A Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence led by the University of Maryland

Anti-Terrorism Assistance Programs


Anti-Terrorism Assistance Programs

Investigators: 
Other START Researchers: 
Peter WeinbergerDevin EllisRon Capps

Project Details

Abstract: 

The Anti-Terrorism Assistance Program is a suite of training projects funded by the Department of State's Office of Antiterrorism Assistance (ATA), which states that it trains civilian security and law enforcement personnel from friendly governments in police procedures that deal with terrorism. DS officers work with the host country's government and a team from that country's U.S. mission to develop the most effective means of training for bomb detection, crime scene investigation, airport and building security, maritime protections, and VIP protection.

Anti-Terrorism Program: Executive Forum for Foreign Fighters – Development

Abstract: START developed two sets of curricula on the Foreign Terrorist Fighter phenomenon. The first course, “Whole of Government Approaches to Disrupting the Foreign Terrorist Fighter Lifecycle,” is geared towards senior leadership from the criminal justice and related communities, and highlights policy and organizational characteristics of a successful response to the foreign terrorist fighter threat. The second course, “Creating an Interagency Foreign Terrorist Fighter Task Force,” is geared towards investigators, and highlights operationally-relevant characteristics of the foreign terrorist fighter threat and responses to the threat. The ICONS team developed an ICONS simulation on creating an interagency task force to address foreign terrorist fighters to support this second course.

Methodology: START utilized a multi-stage process to develop the curricula on the foreign terrorist fighter phenomenon. The curricula were focused on pre-approved topics based on feedback from the ATA Program Officer. START worked closely with the ATA Program Officer to determine additional themes and key content for each course. START then identified appropriate subject matter experts that worked with the curriculum developers at START to develop all course materials. The program relied on standard instructional design principles to optimize the learning environment for ATA students.

Executive Forum for Countering Improvised Explosive Devices (C-IEDs)

Abstract: The Executive Forum for Countering Improvised Explosive Devices was provided to 17 Algerian and Tunisian officials, 23-28 April 2017 at the University of Maryland, College Park campus. START assisted the Antiterrorism Assistance Office with facilitating a customized training program that raised awareness on: terrorism trends; improvised explosive devices worldwide; bomb squad commander’s roles and responsibilities; encountering improvised explosive devices; hotel security concerns and initiatives; improvised explosive device awareness and recognition; post blast investigations; Algeria and Tunisia bomb squad capabilities and posture; Fairfax County police bomb squad capabilities and posture; and the Terrorist Explosive Device Analytical Center. Participants were able to leave the week-long forum with a better understanding of the topics discussed, and a greater ability to apply the knowledge and skills obtained during the forum to their respective countries.

Methodology: START utilized a multi-stage process to develop and deliver the forum. The Antiterrorism Assistance (ATA) Office managed the requirements definition phase. START then assisted the ATA in content and subject matter expert selection. After a balanced and complimentary line-up of experts and forum agenda were finalized, the forum delivery phase took place at the University. This was followed by the final phase, the after action report of forum experience, in which START provided an After Action Report containing analysis of the forum delivery, learning outcomes assessment, satisfaction survey results, and recommendations for future trainings.

Timeframe

Project Period: 
June 2016 to May 2017