As Antiterrorism (AT) Awareness Month winds to a close, it’s important to remember that vigilance is required year-round to protect ourselves from the global threat of terrorism.
“The awareness month program presented an opportunity to highlight the seriousness of this important topic given today’s threat environment,” said HQ IMCOM Protection Branch Chief Dale Roth. “But it is always important to take extraordinary action to increase awareness across our Army communities worldwide, all year long.”
“The only way to prevent, protect, mitigate, respond and recover collectively and as individuals when faced with a hostile situation is to know what to watch for, and how to respond,” Roth explained.
“Our personnel must remain mindful of the potential circumstances that could develop,” Roth said, “placing them as a target of opportunity or consequential victim of a terrorist attack.”
Multiple attacks over the past year in both our homeland and abroad have resulted in increased force protection actions on our installations, but there still remains a need to remain vigilant and maintain an ever increasing awareness of activities around us.
Threats may range from local criminal activity and insider threat actions to violent terrorists and radicalized active shooters to breaches in our security through the use of unmanned aerial systems or cyber-attacks. As these threats continue, so must our vigilance, to include maintaining a keen awareness and understanding of actions to take when observing and responding to these activities.
As individuals and units, we must synchronize awareness efforts to avoid circumstances that could increase risk of becoming a target. For example, become current on all required antiterrorism and active shooter training, rehearse individual and collective response options, maintain high vigilance and awareness, and know when and how to report any suspicious activity.
“It is imperative that not only leaders but all Army personnel participate in AT Awareness activities year-round,” Roth said. “We must be consistent in reinforcing the importance of protecting our Army communities against this ever-evolving and persistent terrorist threat.”
Roth encourages family members, dependents and non-CAC card holders to take the “Level I Antiterrorism Class” available at Joint Knowledge Online, or JKO at http://jko.jten.mil. From the homepage click “Enter JKO.” At the bottom of the page there is an option for Non-CAC card holders under the title “JS-US007: Level I Antiterrorism Awareness Training.”
After completing the training, Roth encourages parents to discuss what they’ve learned with children in an age-appropriate manner. “Keeping us safe is everyone’s responsibility,” he said. “Year round.”