THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
Last year the GAO, Congress’ watch-
dog, undertook a comprehensive and
balanced review of State’s diplomatic
security policy and procedures.
The findings were published on June
25: “Diplomatic Security: Overseas
Facilities May Face Greater Risks Due
to Gaps in Security-Related Activities,
Standards and Policies.” For the full
report and recommendation status, go
GAO found, among other shortcom-
ings, that State has not fully developed
and implemented a risk management
policy for overseas facilities.
Further, State’s risk management
activities do not operate as a continu-
ous process or continually incorporate
new information. For example, in some
instances updating standards took more
than eight years.
The report’s thirteenth recommen-
dation dealt with this shortcoming by
requiring the development of a risk
management policy and procedures
that include identification of the roles
and responsibilities of all stakeholders.
Futher, the policy and procedures are to
be continually updated.
This recommendation has far-reach-
ing implications in that its implementa-
tion could also provide a cornerstone
for the diplomatic security training
programs being offered by the Foreign
Isn’t it time that the State Department
moved more swiftly to address these
findings and recommendations before
another six-month period passes? Move-
ment on the recommendations would
surely help with AFSA’s congressional
James (Jim) Meenan