Gilmore called for a national strategy, as opposed to a federal one, saying the bureaucratic federal environment would undermine the government's efforts to work effectively in combating terrorism with state and local agencies. "The state and local agencies are really the cops on the beat," Gilmore said. He praised FEMA for working well alongside state and local agencies in the aftermath of the Pentagon attack, noting that the working relationship among federal agencies is not always so seamless. Despite their differences, both the Gilmore Commission and the Hart-Rudman Commission agreed the national homeland security office, whether housed in an agency or established as a White House office, would require a budget, accountability, and a strong focus on border security. Gilmore, Hart, and Rudman also said the military should play a subordinate role in the coordination of homeland security activities to preserve civil liberties. "The national homeland security agency should not be a military or intelligence collection agency; it should be the central coordinating mechanism for anticipating, preventing, and responding to attacks on the homeland," Hart said. Gilmore also cautioned against giving the military a lead role in coordinating strategies to combat terrorism in the United States. "Although it is generally accepted that events could occur where the military needs to be engaged, particularly the National Guard, nonetheless, we have expressed an abiding caution about deploying a military response to a domestic situation and only then in support of a civilian federal agency like FEMA," Gilmore said.
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