Soft Target Hardening: Protecting People from Attack

Monday, February 16
Breakout 1

Provides a critical examination of vulnerabilities to soft target attack, the perpetrators and their targets. Presents hardening tactics and deterrence/mitigation methodology and activities.

Terrorist attacks occur daily at civilian-centric venues worldwide, and approximately ninety percent of fatalities in modern day wars are now non-combatants. The battlefield lines have clearly been redrawn, with innocent men, women and children caught in the crossfire. The purposeful targeting of civilians and associated breach of moral boundaries is shocking and causes a ripple effect of fear - two primary goals of terrorism fueled by radical religious and political ideology. Despite escalating violence against places of worship, study and leisure around the world, there is a universal psychological "blind eye" to the threat; as such, we hesitate to explore susceptibility to soft target terrorist attacks and discuss deterrence and mitigation tactics. This presentation serves to enlighten and arm those who secure, own, and operate soft target facilities.

Presented by: Jennifer Hesterman, Academic Author, Taylor & Francis Group, Qatar

Dr. Jennifer Hesterman, Colonel, U.S. Air Force (retired) is a counterterrorism expert, author and professor. While in the military, she served three Pentagon tours, commanded multiple field units, and was Vice Commander, Andrews Air Force Base, home of Air Force One, where she led base security and escorted the President. She has a doctoral degree from Benedictine University, and Master of Science degrees from Johns Hopkins University and Air University. Dr. Hesterman was a fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and the Harvard Senior Executive Fellows program. She is a member of the ASIS Crime and Loss Prevention Council, contributing editor for The Counter Terrorist magazine and author of The Terrorist-Criminal Nexus (CRC Press, 2013) and Soft Target Hardening (CRC Press, 2014).