Obama Order First Ever Test of US National Alert System

I must admit that I don’t have a clue what this is all about, but something is obviously going on here: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) have just released a couple of public notice’, announcing the first ever presidential alert to be aired across US on the nation’s emergency alert system. At the same time, the US is calling all its ambassadors back to Washington. Conspiracy theories, anyone?

“As Next Generation EAS systems become operational over the next few years, they will complement other public alert and warning systems now being developed, including FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) and the Commercial Mobile Alert System that will enable consumers to receive alerts through a variety of multi-media platforms on their smart-phones, blackberries and other mobile broadband devices.”

US Federal Communications Commission


The Federal Communications Commission today took action to help pave the way for the first-ever Presidential alert to be aired across the United States on the Nation’s Emergency Alert System (EAS), says in a statement dated February 3.

“The national test will help determine the reliability of the EAS system and its effectiveness in notifying the public of emergencies and potential danger nationwide and regionally. The FCC voted unanimously to adopt a Third Report and Order that sets forth rules that will facilitate the federal government’s efforts to conduct a national EAS test by transmitting a Presidential Alert from Washington, D.C. to television and radio broadcasters, cable systems and satellite service providers who will then deliver the alert to the American public.”

“The test will assist the FCC, in coordination with the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Weather Service (NWS), with assessing the current system and better determining what improvements need to be made to further strengthen the Nation’s EAS, particularly as broadband technologies continue to emerge. Although the date for the National EAS test has yet to be
determined, establishing the rules is an important first step in the process.”

“As Next Generation EAS systems become operational over the next few years, they will complement other public alert and warning systems now being developed, including FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) and the Commercial Mobile Alert System that will enable consumers to receive alerts through a variety of multi-media platforms on their smart-phones, blackberries and other mobile broadband devices.”

Copy of document here.

Today, February 7. the FCC have issued the following public notice:

“By this Public Notice, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission), consistent with the Federal Advisory Committee Act,1 announces that the FCC’s Emergency Response Interoperability Center Public Safety Advisory Committee (PSAC) will meet on Tuesday, March 15, 2011.”

“The PSAC is a Federal Advisory Committee that will provide recommendations to assist the Commission and the Emergency Response Interoperability Center (ERIC) in implementing  the following policy objectives: (1) the adoption of technical and operational requirements and  procedures to ensure a nationwide level of interoperability for the public safety broadband-network; (2) the adoption and implementation of requirements and procedures to address operability, roaming, priority access, gateway functions and interfaces, the interconnectivity of public safety broadband networks, and other matters related to the functioning of the nationwide public safety broadband network; (3) the adoption of authentication and encryption requirements for common public safety broadband applications and network use; (4) the coordination of ERIC’s policies with other entities, including other federal agencies; and (5) such other policies for which ERIC may have responsibilities from time to time.”

“Matters to be considered at this meeting include the duties set forth in the PSAC charter, the process for completing its tasks, and committee structure. Topics considered at the meeting may include the interoperability of 700 MHz public safety broadband networks with other public safety networks, including both narrowness networks and broadband networks; user applications; security and authentication features; and network evolution.”

Copy of document here.

Additional Documents:

From the Homeland Security Bureau’s website:

“The EAS is a national public warning system that requires broadcasters, cable television systems, wireless cable systems, satellite digital audio radio service providers, and direct broadcast satellite providers to provide the communications capability to the President to address the American public during a national emergency.”

Calling Home All Ambassadors

In an unprecedented move, apparently one that has never happened before, nearly all US ambassadors to all nations have been called back to Washington for a summit conference this week.

Politico.com reports;  “Ambassadors from almost all 260 U.S. embassies, consulates and other posts in more than 180 countries are expected to convene at the State Department for what’s being billed as the first meeting of its kind.

HuffingtonPost.com; “Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is convening an unprecedented mass meeting of U.S. ambassadors.

What Is ODDR?

 

Link from the U.S. Department of State website:  ‘Notice to the Press’ on February 1.

This meeting was about something called QDDR.

“Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton convened the first ever Global Chiefs of Mission Conference. This will be the first time U.S. Ambassadors will gather from around the world simultaneously. A principal aim of the conference will be to prepare for the implementation of the recommendations in the Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR).”

“The QDDR provides a blueprint for elevating American “civilian power” to better advance our national interests and to be a better partner to the U.S. military.”

Some of the objectives of the QDDR:

  • Creating an Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment
  • Establishing a new Bureau for Energy Resources
  • Creating an Under Secretary for Civilian Security
  • Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security Affairs
  • Establish a Bureau for Counterterrorism
  • Establishing a Coordinator for Cyber Issues

Again, I don’t have a clue to what this is all about.

And at the moment I won’t speculate.

I’ll get back to you…

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