Antiterrorism Awareness Month campaign aims to remind people that threat is real

Aug. 5, 2011

U.S. Army Europe Public Affairs

U.S. Army Europe

To report suspcious behavior in your community, visit

Photo credit U.S. Army illustration

HEIDELBERG, Germany -- August is Antiterrorism Awareness Month for the U.S. Army, and U.S. Army Europe is hoping to raise awareness of the terrorist threat by following the Army antiterrorism theme for the fourth quarter of FY 2011: Understanding the Threat.

Antiterrorism is defined as the measures taken to detect, deter and defend against potential or actual terrorist plans or actions, said Robert C. Balcerzak, deputy chief of USAREUR’s Antiterrorism Division. He said terrorism has always been a threat to the U.S. forces community, and perhaps a greater threat to military communities outside the U.S.

“There continues to be threats within Europe, and what is most important to understand is that terrorism can happen anytime and anywhere,” said Balcerzak. He said that U.S. servicemembers can be in danger even when they are not the terrorists’ intended target.

There are many resources available to help servicemembers and their families stay safe.

“Tools can be mundane yet effective, such as dead-bolt locks on private residences or complex intrusion-detection systems,” he said. But he said prevention and caution are the best tools in combating terrorists.

Those tools include training in techniques for avoiding becoming a victim of terrorism, community vigilance programs such as the iWatch program that helps community members to watch for and report suspicious activity, and resources such as the U.S. State Department website that informs the public of conditions across the globe that could place them in danger.

“The key to the process is not completing annual training, but rather living the lessons,” said Balcerzak. “A vigilant and aware community is one of the most potent tools in the arsenal.”

For a wide range of information and resources for combating terrorism and reporting suspicious activity, visit the USAREUR vigilance page.