Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Trump Blasts His Intel Chiefs as Naive

The Intelligence Community Seal

UPDATE: [31Jan2019] 
Senator Schumer has called for an "Intelligence Intervention of Trump" to "educate the President on issues of National Security."  This comes from the Democrat Party which routinely leaks highly classified and sensitive materials to CNN and other elements of the Press.  

More importantly, Schumer's inference is that he is setting the stage for the "impeachment" of the POTUS, implying that Trump is incapable of managing the Affairs of State.  Mr Trump made clear early on that he had no confidence whatever in the US Intelligence Community's judgment, based on the weaponization of the Intelligence products he had received before and after his Inauguration.
Importantly, Schumer's comments border on Treason, and issue which could backfire on his belligerence.

The POTUS, like any other Chief Executive [Private or Public sector], listens to his advisors and makes his decisions which includes their input.  
[Obama was notable for ignoring his Presidential Daily Brief and instead going to the Golf Course; he was also notable for going to Las Vegas to gamble in the midst of the Benghazi disaster.]


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Yahoo News, by Dylan Sableford (Senior Editor)

According to the Yahoo News, President Trump has criticized his Intelligence Chiefs as "Extremely Passive and Naive" after they disagreed with his assessment of Iran as a "source of potential danger and conflict".   Trump also discounted their assessments of North Korea and ISIS as continuing to pose serious threats to the US.

This is not to say these managers are not professional and competent; it IS to say the organizations they manage, because of their histories and massive growth since 2001, no longer have the capability to produce objective, precision analysis - in a timely fashion.

Our opinion is based on roughly 50 years of experience operating in and around
 the Intelligence Community and LEC with Military Intelligence, CIA, DIA, NSA, 
DOJ, theFBI [including active roles as Analyst and Operations Manager, as 
Case Officer, Special Operations advisor, builder, instructor, and director of a 
national MilitaryIntelligence organization that trained over 1,000 units, 
Special Intelligence Advisorto the CG of Southern Command and to the 
CIA's DDO-LADirector of Operations for the Defense Clandestine Service
and Editor of the (Intelligence) Black Book at  the Pentagon]. 

Our judgement is that Mr Trump is correct in doubting the ability of the current Intelligence Community to provide an accurate National Security assessment.  What he receives has no particular value.

The IC ranks are filled with programmed analysts who feed the current leadership the politicized drivel they’ve been forced to produce over the previous four Administrations.

This is a bloated, relatively incompetent bureaucracy, incapable of making objective assessments.

Now, what may have originally begun as an extremely accurate, objective assessment by an experienced and highly skilled analyst must currently  navigate through a dozen or more layers of politicized supervisory bureaucrats, altering content to meet the accepted political orientation of each layer.

By the time the modified assessment reaches the Director level, it has become worthless pablum, inoffensive to even the most mindless politician - and thus acceptable to brief the President.

Back in 2002, with Ed Meese, we redesigned the Intelligence Community and capped the entire IC at fewer than 10,000 for all the components, with no more than 100 staff for the newly created Director of National Intelligence [DNI] to replace the Director of Central Intelligence which had become an incompetent but all-powerful overseer of all the Intelligence organizations.

The DNI, as we envisioned it, would become a streamlined coordination point through which intelligence collection could be coordinated and assessments could be conducted in an open and collegial manner.

Previously, coordination of precision intelligence was routinely conducted over the Grey Phone
[aka: STU, or secure telephone unit] in which all levels of classified information could be discussed without fear of interception.

A collective call could bring in analysts from key agencies, complete with tasking and retrieval, and on the spot assessments -- to be translated into refined intelligence.

But, the last time we checked, the IC had swollen to nearly 900,000 underemployed drones cleared at the Top Secret level, staffing nearly 1,300 government organizations, supported by nearly 2,000 private companies in 10,000 locations, with a proposed budget of about $60 Billion.

Today, that same coordination would be either impossible, or would take weeks of coordination, and "oversight".

To clarify, supporting this monstrous behemoth, we calculate there is a core competency of about 10,000 superb analysts, operators, and support personnel whose professionalism and expertise carry the weight and expense of the other 890,000 non-essential employees.

These professionals can tap into the collection and analysis of experts in accessible organizations [e.g., NSA, DIA, or NRO] in order to add technical expertise to their assessments and operations.  Agencies such as NSA have highly sophisticated equipment which gathers an incredible amount of information, which is stored, but inadequately analyzed to become finished Intelligence.  Furnished to the right analysts, the information can serve to create accurate intelligence.

As a footnote, 
the IC is NOT composed of 17 agencies - as reported in the accompanying article which apparently uses Hillary Clinton or Senator Warner as its prime sources.

There are more than 1,000 organizations which collect, process, and contribute to a few actual agencies tasked with producing national Intelligence products.

These are:
1) CIA
2) DIA,
3) NSA [National Security Agency]
4) NRO [National Reconnaissance Office]
5) NGA [National Geospatial Intelligence Agency]

The DNI [Director of National Intelligence] is an Administrator - not an agency.

The following are not agencies, but are Intelligence subsets of Departments or other agencies
     a) Army
     b) Navy
     c) Air Force
     d) USMC
     e) USCG
     f) Secret Service [formerly under Treasury Department]
     g) ICE
     h) Customs & Border Protection
     i)  TSA

2) Treasury Department [Intelligence Bureau; Secret Service]
3) Energy Department [Office of Intelligence and Counterintelligence]
4) Department of Justice
    a) FBI
    b) DEA
    c)  ATF
5) Commerce Department [Intelligence Bureau]
6) State Department [Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR)]

There are a few other highly specialized organizations which conduct unique programs; but, those are not officially part of the Intelligence Community.

 In summary, Trump is correct in his assessment of the IC chiefs who are Administrators, and not experienced operators or analysts.

Mr Trump is better served by outside organizations which specialize in collecting and analyzing Intelligence on specific areas and topics pending a complete revamping of the Intelligence Community.