In the harrowing days after September 11, 2001, the President of the United States reached out to one man to help guide the nation in its quest to shore up domestic security. In this candid and compelling memoir, Tom Ridge describes the whirlwind series of events that took him from the state capital of Pennsylvania, into the fray of Washington, D.C., and onto the world stage as a new leader in the fight against international terrorism. A Washington outsider, Ridge went above and beyond in his new post, identifying the need to integrate response teams on a wide-reaching scale and leading the nation's ambitious initiative of establishing a new Cabinet department, the Department of Homeland Security. The author recounts how the new department's unsung heroes, brought together under great duress, succeeded against difficult odds and navigated the politics of terrorism. Perhaps most importantly, Ridge offers a prescriptive look to the future with provocative ideas such as a national ID card and the use of biometrics to track not just who enters the United States but also how long they are here. Tom Ridge simply tells it like it is, offering a refreshingly honest assessment of the state of homeland security today - and what it needs to be tomorrow.
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