In the National Interest: Organising Government for National Security

An anticipatory view on national security From The Demos Annual Security Lecture 2006

Quote:
“I start with the desirability of taking an anticipatory view of national security. ‘Clear and present dangers’ do of course arise unexpectedly. Such dangers have to be faced with whatever weapons and defences are at hand at the time. That will always be the case, but it is more important now than for some time past that we look ahead and recognise what may lie ahead; preferably, when the prospect of danger is sufficiently clear to justify attention but before the danger becomes present; ideally, acting in advance so as to avert the problem altogether but if not then reducing its likely impact on our lives; and certainly, preventing the needs of the moment crowding out the necessary preparations to face the future with confidence. And a similar statement can and should be made in respect of spotting opportunities when they are real enough prospects, and early enough to allow the necessary investment to capitalise on them. Risk management is about seizing opportunities as well as avoiding loss.”

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