Community involvement wanted during Antiterrorism Awareness Month
Billed as the 21st century Neighborhood Watch, iWatch is a community terror-watch program that utilizes Soldiers, their families and civilians as the garrison's "eyes and ears" to report any suspicious activity to base authorities.

WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii -- Aug. 1, marks the beginning of the Department of the Army's Antiterrorism (AT) Awareness Month.

In support of the national initiative to combat terrorism and increase vigilance in protecting Army communities, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii directorates and chiefs will ensure their divisions conduct AT training and education, here, and throughout the garrison, through Aug. 31.

"The purpose of AT Awareness Month is to create an awareness of antiterrorism throughout the entire Department of the Army," said Donald Murry, antiterrorism officer; Directorate of Plans, Mobilization and Security; USAG-HI.

This year marks the seventh annual AT Awareness Month observance, with the focus of the Army's AT community for quarter four of fiscal year 2014 on Organization and Individual Protective Measures.

According to Murry, all Soldiers and DA civilians are required to complete the AT Level 1 Course (Online Program Course), located at https://jkodirect.jten.mil as Course #JS-US007-14, during the month of August. Contractors and family members are encouraged to complete the course, as well.

Everyone can do their part to keep their home and work environments safe by actively participating in iWatch Army, a key component of the AT awareness campaign.

Reports are then passed on to the FBI's eGuardian system, which connects law-enforcement agencies and intelligence organizations at all levels of government across the U.S.

The iWatch program is comprised of the following two elements: passive and active involvement.

• Passive involvement -- Requires individual situational awareness of surroundings; requests individuals be alert at all times for suspicious activity.

• Active involvement -- Requires individuals to take action and report observations to law enforcement for further investigation.

"The key to applying iWatch methods is for every individual to get self-educated about the indicators of terrorist activity and about reporting suspicious activity," Murry said. "Everyone can make a difference by recognizing what to report and reporting it to security or law enforcement personnel."

• Suspicious Behavior
Army community members should be on the lookout for the following suspicious behaviors:

- Strangers asking security-related questions;

- Unfamiliar people in secure areas;

- Loitering;

- Anyone drawing or taking photos of important buildings, sensitive areas or access control points;

- People wearing bulky, ill-fitting or unseasonable clothing;

- Chemical smells;

- Individuals purchasing supplies or equipment that can be used to make bombs or weapons, or buying uniforms without having the proper credentials;

- Unattended briefcases, suitcases, backpacks or packages; and

- Unattended cars left in parking lots, in no parking zones or in front of important buildings.

"Law enforcement personnel cannot be everywhere, and they need the eyes and ears of the entire installation community to help in quelling terrorism," said Don Murry, antiterrorism officer; Directorate of Plans, Mobilization and Security; U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii.

"Remember, if you see something, say something," Murray advised.

To report a suspicious activity or behavior, call these numbers:

- (808) 438-7114, Fort Shafter; or

- (808) 655-7114, Schofield Barracks.

Page last updated Wed August 13th, 2014 at 00:00