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During yesterday’s political affairs program This Week with Geroge Stephanopoulos on ABC, Micheal Leiter, former director of the National Counterterrorism Center, stated people from the film and the gaming industries have contributed with the US to combat terrorism.
Here is the ABCNews.com transcript (with video of the discussion) of the segment about national security just days after a USPS employee landed with a gyrocopter at the back yard of the White House. Martha Raddatz, subbing for Stephanopoulos, told Leiter the U.S. has lacked imagination when fighting terrorist group al Qaeda. The talk with Leiter starts at 6:25 minutes.
RADDATZ: I feel like I still haven’t gotten an answer, and not really from Chairman McCaul, whether there is anything in place that should have stopped that, that should — they should have seen that gyrocopter.
LEITER: They should have seen it. There are all sorts of things in place. There’s actually a whole air defense umbrella around Washington. And so why it didn’t get seen — people are saying it flew so low — what happened was, he’s low. He looks like a car to a radar. So he — it’s my understanding he was seen, but people thought he was a car, it was a bird, and it wasn’t addressed.
But the interesting thing about this gyrocopter it was built in the 1920s. So you have 1920s technology that’s pointing out flaws in $100 million air defense system. And ironically it’s a federal employee committing a felony to point out the flaws in the system.
RADDATZ: Michael, I want to go back to — 2004, the 9/11 commission — and you heard Pierre talking about the 9/11 commission. The U.S. government suffered from a failure of imagination in battling al Qaeda. Are we doing that again planning for the last attack instead of the next one?
And you’ve been in government very recently. How do you red team that? How do you know what’s going to happen, or try to know?
LEITER: It’s a great question and that’s very hard. We did do a better job I think after 9/11 bringing people in who weren’t government officials, who weren’t law enforcement officials. We worked with people from Hollywood and the gaming community to say “you’ve got an imagination, what would you do as the next attack?”
But inevitably, government is a big organization, a big bureaucracy, it tends to fight the previous war and the previous threat. And if you have to invest limited resources, you’re going to do what the most likely attack and the biggest consequence attack is. And that means things like gyrocopters that could pose some threat, but maybe not the threat of a commercial airliner being hijacked, or weapons storming the Capitol. Get lower priority.
And again, limited resources, you have to make those choices.