Dec 14, 2007
Integrating 21st Century Development and Security Assistance
A new CSIS report deals with today's expanded DOD "non-traditional" security assistance programs, including CT capacity building, post-conflict operations, stabilization and reconstruction, and humanitarian assistance missions.
From Integrating 21st Century Development and Security Assistance [61-page pdf]:
The Task Force welcomes DOD’s commitment to building the capacities of vulnerable developing countries to secure their borders and territories and to mitigate the underlying sources of support for terrorism. A review of regional CT programs in Africa suggests that unity of effort remains elusive at the strategic, organizational, and resource levels. There is a lack of coherent strategic vision and authoritative plans to guide identification of critical U.S. government CT capabilities, to rationalize resources across agency boundaries, and to integrate activities in target countries. At the organizational level, there is a persistent structural misalignment between regionally-based Combatant Commands and State Department country-based approaches, complicating the use of either instrument as an interagency platform. Finally, at the resource level, a failure to invest in the civilian CT capabilities required to improve governance and the rule of law, promote economic and social development, and advance public education, results in an overreliance on military instruments in the Global War on Terror
To promote a more integrated U.S. approach to counterterrorism, the Task Force endorses stronger State/DOD joint strategic planning and coordination at the regional level and recommends that DOD, State and USAID present relevant congressional committees with a joint CT security assistance budget, part of the more comprehensive effort requiring increased Executive Branch budget rationalization and transparency. To overcome organizational obstacles to unity of effort, the Task Force calls for more robust cross-staffing at Combatant Commands, the State Department, and USAID; the creation of interagency CT task forces in U.S. embassies; and additional funding and professional incentives for cross-agency counterterrorism training and exercises. To redress funding gaps, the Task Force recommends interagency formulation of country-specific assistance strategies, the establishment of flexible CT accounts for use by U.S. ambassadors, and increased funding for USAID’s Office of Transition Initiatives.
The issue of 1206 [Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2006 established a new program that gives the Department of Defense the authority to spend up to $200 million (now $300 million) of its own appropriations to train and equip foreign militaries to undertake counterterrorism or stability operations] funding authority was the most contentious facing the Task Force.
Some members questioned DOD’s competence in conducting non-military security training (as proposed by the administration) and worried about the potential militarization of U.S. foreign assistance. They argued that Section 1206 authority should be repealed and more emphasis placed on reforming the FAA to provide more flexible tools to the State Department for such training purposes. Other members disagreed, arguing that Section 1206 represents exactly the kind of innovative and agile mechanisms required to conduct the global war on terrorism. They also noted the historical inability of other agencies to operate in non-permissive environments. These members generally supported the Bush administration’s request to make 1206 authorities permanent and global, to allow DOD training of non-military counterterrorism elements under the provision, and to create a higher resource ceiling for the program.
The Task Force ultimately concluded that Section 1206 does provide a valuable, flexible instrument to meet unanticipated contingencies and opportunities in the struggle against terrorism. The use of such funds, however, has wider foreign policy implications. Accordingly, 1206 authority should be restricted to time-sensitive, emerging threats, require robust State Department concurrence and joint formulation of projects, and be subject to close Congressional oversight. To maximize the effectiveness of the 1206 authority, which currently requires annual reauthorization, Congress should extend 1206 authority over 3-5 years to foster program stability (rather than making it permanent and global) and allow DOD to carry over unspent funds across fiscal years. It should also permit DOD to use such monies in combat zones or other insecure environments to work with non-military internal security forces that typically fall under the Ministry of the Interior (such as constabulary, border police, counterterrorism forces, and coast guards), subject to explicit agreement from the Secretary of State and intense legislative oversight. Over time, Section 1206 authority should be phased out, replaced by a substantial, flexible cross-government contingency fund (notionally within Foreign Military Financing (FMF)) to support current 1206 activities.
The Commanders’ Emergency Response Program (CERP) permits U.S. military commanders to use appropriated O&M funds to meet urgent humanitarian and reconstruction needs of local populations in areas where U.S. military forces are operating. CERP currently applies only to Iraq and Afghanistan, with temporary authorities granted to DOD in successive supplemental appropriations covering those wars. The Pentagon regards CERP as a critical force protection and engagement tool, fostering a permissive environment for U.S. forces in SSTR and counter-insurgency operations. Overall CERP has been a reasonably successful instrument at the disposal of U.S. commanders to deliver goods and services rapidly and elicit local cooperation. The Building Global Partnership legislation submitted to Congress would permit commanders to use CERP funds for urgent humanitarian relief and reconstruction assistance to local populations anywhere that U.S. forces are operating.
CERP was created to provide U.S. commanders in Iraq with an instrument to help bring stability to Iraq after the U.S.-led invasion, by providing tangible benefits to the Iraqi people. The initial funding for the program came from the hundreds of millions of dollars in cash discovered by the 3rd Infantry Division and other U.S. forces in the vaults of Saddam Hussein’s Ba’athist Party. U.S. commanders had been frustrated by their inability, in the vacuum that resulted following the collapse of Iraqi public institutions, to meet massive emergency needs, from removing trash to restoring basic sanitation and public health, distributing rations, and repairing schools. On May 7, 2003, the Coalition Commander issued an order to establish a “Brigade Commander’s Discretionary Recovery Program to Directly Benefit the Iraqi People.” In June 2003, Ambassador Paul Bremer, the newly arrived Administrator of the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), gave the program its current name and delegated authority over its use to the Coalition Commander. The establishing memo declared: “This Program will enable commanders to respond to urgent humanitarian relief and reconstruction requirements within their areas of responsibility, by carrying out programs that will immediately assist the Iraqi people and support the reconstruction of Iraq."
Under initial guidance, permissible uses of CERP funds included the building, repair, reconstitution, and reestablishment of the social and material infrastructure in Iraq. This included, but was not limited to, the following: water and sanitation infrastructure, food production and distribution, healthcare, education, electricity, telecommunications, transportation, economic and financial management, the rule of law, effective governance, irrigation systems, civic improvement, and repairs to cultural facilities. Prohibited expenditures* fell into several categories: expenses of direct or indirect benefit of CJTF-7 (including coalition) forces; entertainment of the local Iraqi population; weapons buy-back or rewards program; purchase of firearms, ammunition, or removal of UXO; duplication of services available through municipal governments; support to individuals or private businesses (with some exceptions, e.g., repair of damage caused by the coalition); and salaries, pensions or emergency payments to civil service. Each division commander was provided with $500,000 and each brigade commander $200,000 in CERP funds and instructed to coordinate all projects with regional CPA offices, governorate support teams, and Civil Affairs teams, and to submit weekly expense reports.
* In September 2005, this list of prohibited activities was extended to include “providing goods, services, or funds to national armies, national guard forces, border security forces, civil defense forces, infrastructure protection forces, highway patrol units, police, special police, or intelligence or other security forces”; “training, equipping, or operating costs of Iraqi or Afghan security forces”; and “conducting psychological operations, information operations, or other U.S. coalition, or Iraqi/Afghanistan Security Force operations.”
Among the uniformed military services, support for the HA [Humanitarian Assistance] mission is strongest within the Marine Corps, light infantry of the Army and National Guard, and the indirect action portion of the Special Operations Forces, which focuses on civil affairs and psychological operations. Among the geographic Combatant Commands, the humanitarian assistance mission has found a receptive audience both in CENTCOM, which is deeply involved in stability and counter-insurgency operations, as well as in the so-called “economy of force” commands, including PACOM, SOUTHCOM, and now AFRICOM, a large share of whose mandate includes responding to humanitarian crises.