PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The attacks on the World Trade Center fifteen years ago changed the way the United States looked at security.
Since then, the local, state, FBI, and homeland security communication system has improved.
According to Colonel Steven O’Donnell, information flow through the fusion center by the Department of Defense has modernized the NSA and CIA’s ability to vet out terrorists.
“Information coming out of those places shared better, top secret info shared better, information that’s classified/de-classified quicker, much better,” O’Donnell explained.
You can never be too cautious. “You call police and we go and ask questions,” continued O’Donnell about how a simple phone could prevent a tragic event. “At the end of the day, we will have a data base on that if it happens again and again.”
Another key component in keeping our state and country safe is the Rhode Island National Guard. Rhode Island is the only National Guard with a special forces unit, a special operations detachment unit and an airborne infantry unit.
General Reginald Centracchio was the Commander of the RI National Guard on September 11, 2001. He said that 89% of the Guard has combat experience.
Centracchio also stated, “we need to build upon our ability to defeat our energy on cyber-terrorism as well as making sure we’re smart enough on how security effects each of us.”
Both O’Donnell and Centracchio stress if you see something, say something.
Seven Rhode Islanders died on September 11, and 29 more lost their lives while serving in the war on terror. On Sunday, they, among others, were honored at the Rhode Island State House.