SHIFT - The End of the War on Drugs, The Beginning of the War on Terrorism

A Drug Cop’s Four Year Romp through The White House National Security Council

by Richard L. Cañas



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 9/3/2014

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 326
ISBN : 9781496937025
Format : E-Book
Dimensions : N/A
Page Count : 326
ISBN : 9781496937018

About the Book

A discerning Washington bureaucrat (there are a few) once professed that an accurate appraisal of government policies, laws, and procedures requires a thorough examination of the intent and context surrounding their enactment in the first place. A sage and logical deduction, right? Yet this guidance is so often ignored by the impatient. The inimitable national security events described herein occurred over twenty years ago, a lifetime to some, just yesterday to others. The #1 national security concern of the United States government during the early ‘90s was the domestic threat posed by the illicit international drug trade. By comparison, the threat of foreign terrorism was considered a distant third or fourth on the priority scale. It was during this period of time that a mid-level Drug Enforcement Administration field Special Agent was detailed to the National Security Council staff and given the lofty title of Director for Counternarcotics. The assignment was designed to enhance DEA’s influence at the policy level while providing policy-makers with valuable “real world” background information. The one year duty lasted four years and took the author, now the sole Director of Counternarcotics and Counterterrorism on the NSC staff, through a maze of inter-agency squabbles and national security policy inefficiencies. The author’s last two years were the first two years of the William J. Clinton presidency and involved an unprecedented shift between the previous national security priority and a new emerging threat to the US. The account is a compelling narrative of the events that led to this shift and the often unmeasured consequences of inexperienced executives leading the development of national security policy. The lessons not-learned, admittedly with the invaluable assistance of hindsight, continue to effect the world we live in today.

About the Author

Richard “Dick” Cañas is the former Director of the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (2006-2010), and member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Homeland Security Advisory Council (2008-2013). He is currently the President/Chairman of Betts Global Consulting, LLC, a homeland and international security consulting firm.
Cañas has had an impressive and diverse national security career, from managing programs for a private consulting firm with the National Security Agency and the National Guard Bureau, to a 26 year career with the U. S. Department of Justice where he served as Director of the National Drug Intelligence Center and a Special Agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration, (DEA). With DEA he served in various domestic and foreign posts including 12 years in Latin America, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Phoenix Divisional Office, Special Advisor to the Central Intelligence Agency, and Director for Counterterrorism and Counternarcotics at the White House's National Security Council. The latter assignment covered a four-year period under both President George H.W. Bush and President William J. Clinton.
Prior to DEA, Cañas was a police officer and detective for eight years with the Salinas, California Police Department.
A graduate of California State University at San Jose, Cañas has a teaching credential in Police Science and is a sought-after lecturer and instructor on Criminal Justice and Homeland Security both in the U.S. and most recently in Mexico and the United Arab Emirates. He has self-published three books including a text on State Homeland Security and numerous articles on related subjects.