Department of Homeland Security, $98.8 billion year agency mum on attack details, Vegas safety

The Department of Homeland Security, an agency established following the Sept. 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and the White House in order to ensure smooth coordination of protection from and reaction to similar terror events, has remained silent about Friday’s attack on Las Vegas.

With a budget of $98.8 billion a year (roughly twice the net worth of Bill Gates), the agency is charged with coordinating safety for the country through administration of myriad agencies, including activities of the CIA, FBI and a variety of offshoots.

However, as California Gov. Jerry Brown takes the lead in proactive safety in canceling his Governor’s Ball in Hollywood on Saturday and the Academy Awards on Sunday, DHS has remained silent on its findings on the attack and what in fact it or its agencies intend to do.

The Department of Homeland Security has not issued a statement about any responsibility, arrests, findings or proactive precautions in the 17 hours since the attack.

By contrast, on Sept. 11, 2001, it took federal authorities before the creation of DHS about one hour to convey to then-INN White House correspondent John Roi that Al-Quaida was behind the World Trade Center and Pentagon bombings. He reporting it on the air as he himself evacuated from the White House.

The Department of Homeland Security, first headed by former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge in a President George W. Bush appointment recently has failed to pass muster on key measures. The Big Four public auditor KPMG issued a statement that it was unable to audit the fiscal year 2010 books of the DHS due to the high number and relative degree of material weakness in the records.

The office of the Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs at DHS was unable to address any questions about either FY 2009 or FY 2010 or even to produce the audit reports for the press. The office of the Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs, the former head of communications at FEMA was also unable to answer any questions about the events in Las Vegas when asked this morning.

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