We are given figures in the multi multi billions spent on the wars of choice and the so called 'homeland security', but there are huge amounts, in the multi billions, not known or labeled top secret and blacked out in government reports on the rapid growth of intelligence within government and the added private contractors and the costs of that growth. As pointed out in the 'PBS Frontline' report, below, what has it accomplish over all these years, especially as to the main mission after 9/11 and finally getting bin Laden, with all the now known evidence of what the bush administration ignored before 9/11, found through intelligence of a small group and carried out by a small group of 'special forces'. I'm still wanting to know how much we paid for the 'coalition of forces' of countries in supporting the invasion of Iraq, especially those who only sent a few soldiers or none at all but fell in line with the false pretenses given and not related in any way to 9/11.
September 2, 2011 - The U.S. government has doled out more than $35 billion in homeland-security grants to state and local governments over the past decade. Yet even as questions persist about how effective the spending has been, officials are bracing for belt-tightening cuts.
The grants built up a network of capabilities in states, urban areas, and other regions since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Tens of thousands of first responders trained for dealing with terrorist attacks and natural disasters. At 73 "intelligence fusion" centers, analysts sift through data and share classified information over secret networks. Local police and fire departments have pricey radios, robots, and armored vehicles.
But reports over the years have revealed problems involving no-bid contracts, equipment that didn't work as planned, and poor coordination of resources. For example, emergency-response officials in California - by far one of the largest recipients of homeland-security money - used sole-source contracts to spend about $6.2 million on license-plate readers, $4 million on public-safety radios, and $1.2 million for intelligence-analysis software, according to an audit by the Homeland Security Department's inspector general. State officials acknowledge no-bid contracts were a problem and say they are reforming their procurement policies.
Officials in one California area spent more than $74,000 on 55 large-screen digital televisions for training but didn't purchase the actual training system, the IG found. "On the day we visited, all the televisions were being used to monitor the same television station," the IG wrote. read more>>>
Episode: Top Secret America
September 6, 2011 - Thousands of government organizations and private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence. Last December, The Washington Post reported that this "top-secret world ... has become so large, so unwieldy and so secretive that no one knows how much money it costs, how many people it employs, how many programs exist within it or exactly how many agencies do the same work."
On today's Fresh Air, Washington Post national security reporter Dana Priest, the co-author of both the Post's investigative series and the book "Top Secret America: The Rise of the New American Security State", joins Terry Gross for a discussion about how the "terrorism industrial complex" created in response to the Sept. 11 attacks grew to be so big.
"The government said, 'We're facing an enemy we don't understand, we don't have the tools to deal with it, here's billions ... of dollars and a blank check after that for anybody with a good idea to go and pursue it,' " she says. "Not only does the government find it difficult to get its arms around itself, [but now] it doesn't know what's inside, it doesn't know what works, it doesn't know what doesn't work. And nobody still, 10 years later, is really in charge of those questions." read more>>>