The need for individual vigilance
By Maj. Nathanael Jones, 151st ARW Antiterrorism Officer
/ Published December 07, 2008
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah -- Recent events on base highlight the operational need for individual vigilance. Operational security and antiterrorism succeed only when all personnel buy into the concept that every member is a sensor and every member has a responsibility to report suspicious events, activities or people. It is crucial that we do not dismiss suspicious activity simply because we conclude we're being paranoid or too suspicious. There is no such thing when security is concerned. When in doubt, report it. It's that simple.
Call the 151st Security Forces Squadron at DSN 245-2411 to report any suspicious activity. Allow our SFS professionals and our partners in local law enforcement the opportunity to investigate and ascertain the nature, scope and impact of the threat. I've often exited the base and called back to security forces to report suspicious vehicles parked in front of the installation. If I see a package or box left unattended, I'll call it in. If I hear a suspicious sound, like gunfire that is out of place, I'll call it in. If I see people acting suspicious, I'll call it in. Last January, the base employed a team of civilian contractors to map out every building on base. At the time I was new to the installation, and was walking over to the gym and noticed a man and a woman using what looked like a laptop and a filming device to film and record different areas of the base. I had no idea who they were. They didn't appear threatening, so I approached them and asked for some identification. They showed me their contractor badges and explained what they were doing. Although it sounded legitimate, I still called over to the SFS when I arrived at the gym to verify their story and report what I saw. It turned out to be nothing. But what concerns me most is when a suspicious activity turns out to be something and nobody says anything about it. It is imperative that you, as an individual, understand your role in the security of our base. If you see something and it feels wrong, it probably is wrong and you have a duty to report it. The atmosphere we want here is one in which when you turn to the right or the left, you know the person standing next to you won't hesitate to do the right thing. Be the wingman you know you need to be and take this responsibility seriously.