Weekly Intelligence Notes #39-01
1 October 2001

WIN #9-01 dtd 1 Oct 2001

WINs are commentaries on intelligence-related events and issues produced by Roy Jonkers for AFIO Members and for WIN Subscribers, for non-profit educational uses only. RADM Don Harvey and Dr. John Macartney also contribute articles to the WINs. Opinions expressed are solely those of the editors and/or authors referenced with each article.

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COUNTER-TERRORISM 'CZAR' APPOINTED AT NSC -- President Bush named retired Army General Wayne Downing as Assistant to the President and National Director for Combating Terrorism, on the National Security Council staff.
     Downing wrote a scathing 1996 study of security lapses by U.S. commanders in the Middle East after a bomb in June 1996 killed 19 members of the Air Force in a barracks in Saudi Arabia called  Khobar  Towers . The report criticized the entire military chain of command
from the Air Force wing commander up to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and concluded that the U.S. government should stop regarding terrorism as an intermittent problem and instead begin treating it as "undeclared war against the United States ."
     The National Security Council and the State Department have prepared a 10-paragraph "Afghanistan Declaratory Policy" that says the international community "must devote itself to stabilizing Afghanistan . . . The Taliban do not represent the Afghan people, who never elected or chose the Taliban faction . . . We do not want to choose who rules Afghanistan, but we will assist those who seek a peaceful, economically developing Afghanistan free of terrorism."
(WashPost 30Sep01 //Allen & Ricks) <http://www.washingtonpost.com>

NEW INTELLIGENCE SUPER-CUSTOMER TO BE CREATED -- After the Sept. 11 attacks, the President announced the establishment of the OFFICE OF HOMELAND DEFENSE and the appointment of Governor Tom Ridge of Pennsylvania to head it. Recent White House statements have begun to flesh out the duties and authorities of the OHD (probably to be referred to as "Odious" by bureaucrats in the 40 plus federal agencies and departments to be coordinated by the office).
     A new HOMELAND SECURITY COUNCIL is being set up, with Mr. Ridge as chairman and including the attorney general, the secretaries of defense, treasury, health and human services and agriculture as well as the directors of the FBI and FEMA. The counter-terrorism "czar" of the last 11 years, Richard A. Clarke, will be put in charge of the new Office of Cyber Security. Experts in bio-defense from HHS will supervise the vaccines and antibiotic stockpiles now managed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The new council will have 100 staff members, comparable in size to the NSC staff and will be paid for with White House money.
     There will be NO Congressional confirmation or oversight. Mr. Ridge and two other White House officials will be charged with bringing together all the available intelligence and all the services necessary to respond to an emergency or an attack. State and local governments will be represented in some form on the HSC. An executive order is expected to be issued setting up the HSC some time before Mr. Ridge takes up his duties 8 October.
     This new White House agency is intended to have powers to match those of the National Security Council, and is intended to help coordinate counter-terrorism and prevent a repeat of the Sept. 11 attacks. Mr. Ridge is to coordinate federal agencies at the highest level and is to have some authority, as yet undetermined, over their budgets. The White House chief of staff has said the government had a "good track record on reacting to emergencies. But in intelligence gathering, prevention and defense it's been less good."
      By all appearances, this planned reorganization is not the usual "In case of doubt, reorganize, preferably at the top." syndrome. There have been a number of congressional and executive branch bipartisan efforts to define a viable approach to homeland defense in the last several years. Given the fact that Mr. Ridge is a close, personal friend of the President and the awareness of all concerned that something had to be done, OHC may well develop the clout and smarts to pull the sometimes quarreling two score or more agencies into an effective posture. Intelligence, counterintelligence and security will have to figure largely in the planning and management by the new organization which at the very least will be an important customer.(Harvey) ( NY Times 28 Sept '01 /// E Becker & T. Weiner; Wash. Post 26 Sept, '01, P. A4 /// E. Planin & B. Graham; Time Magazine 1 Oct, '01, p. 64 // K. Tumulty

CHAIRMAN SEES NO INTELLIGENCE FAILURE .BUT . Intelligence Committee Chairman Porter Goss, speaking on CBS' "The Early Show," emphatically states that there was no major intelligence failure by the U.S. government in the terrorist attacks on September 11th. Said the Chairman: "We've got plenty of areas we can improve, but I don't want anyone to get the idea that there was a great intelligence failure.. . . It was a combined failure of all our government protection assets, not having the right information on the right day.'' Further, he noted that, if it was anything, it was probably a question of "who would have expected an atrocity of that magnitude?''
     The Chairman ( who will make the keynote address to AFIO members at the AFIO Symposium on 2 November in McLean ) noted that the nation needs additional investments in intelligence, and further also needs to improve such things as border security, the visa program, and domestic intelligence technology at the FBI. In terms of Homeland defense, terrorism and security, "There are many things we can do and are doing that will make it better,'' Goss said, "But . . . it's never going to be 100 percent.''
      In addition, in spite of the Chairman's firm statements in regard to "intelligence failure" and the impossibility of a 'zero defects' capability (absolute security) in an infinitely complex world, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence has suggested in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks that a "fresh look" be taken at restructuring the CIA and the rest of the U.S. intelligence community, including establishment of a separate clandestine service devoted to human intelligence. (Jonkers) (AP, 2 Oct 01)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A55479-2001Oct1.html (Macartney)

Meanwhile... On the Cuban Front. With the nation's attention riveted on the 11 September horror, the arrest of a DIA analyst for spying for Cuba has been largely over-shadowed. The FBI felt it had to accelerate the arrest of Ana Belen Montes, a senior Cuba analyst for DIA earlier than it preferred because of concerns that she would pass along classified information about the US response to the 11 September terrorist attacks. As a consequence, she was arrested in late September before surveillance could reveal with whom she was in contact. Cuba , according to government sources, has been known to share information with Libya , Iran and others that might be sympathetic to Osama bin Laden.
      During the four-month surveillance, Montes continued to have access to highly classified material, including the computer site maintained for the US intelligence community, Intelink. A court-approved surreptitious entry into her Northwest Washington apartment obtained information from her laptop computer that appeared to tie her directly to Cuban intelligence. She also was observed making a series of questionable calls from pay telephones. According to government sources, continued surveillance might never have produced a face-to-face meeting between Montes and her contact since Cuban intelligence avoids meetings, depending instead on coded telephone messages, computer diskettes and short-wave radio.
      According to the 17-page affidavit, Montes communicated via short-wave radio with her contacts in the Cuban government, and documents relating to classified military maneuvers were discovered in her home. Montes, 44, began work at the DIA in 1985 and her spying activities began in 1996. Press reports have not given how much compensation she received from Cuban paymasters or whether her motivation was ideological. It will be interesting to learn eventually what led her into treason, what caused her to become an object of suspicion, how long she was active as a spy, and what could have been done to reveal her activities sooner. ( Harvey ) (WashPost 28 Sep01, p. B3 ///Pincus/Miller; WashTimes 24Sep01, p. A18)

BOUNTY HUNTERS CHASE BIN LADEN - British mercenaries have been trying to trace Osama bin Laden so they can claim the multimillion-dollar bounty put on his head by the United States . A former SAS soldier and a special operations veteran last week confirmed that private operations have been mounted by British and U.S. bounty hunters. There is plenty of incentive. The reward "for information leading directly to the apprehension or conviction" of the terrorist mastermind has been increased to $30 million, and President Bush has made it clear he wants bin Laden "dead or alive."
 The FBI has already received detailed information on bin Laden's whereabouts "on a number of occasions" from military "privateers," according to a security source.
      The source said a bounty hunter would not need to capture or kill the terrorist to claim the reward. Intelligence on his future movements or position would qualify if it led to an official operation that brought him to justice, meaning a lucky intercept by a freelance computer hacker or radio ham could qualify for the reward.
      Even before bin Laden's rise to infamy, bounty hunters were regular visitors to Afghanistan . In the early 1980s, William Lindsay-Hogg led a quasi-official team of mercenaries and British special forces as part of a successful effort to arm and train Afghan fighters who were resisting the Russian invasion. David Tomkins, who took part in the mission, said the men were paid thousands of dollars to steal examples of the Russian AK74, a military assault rifle, from Soviet troops. Tomkins said the unit also grabbed ammunition, filters for gas masks and Russian military papers. Ironically bin Laden, then a military leader in the region, benefited from this raid as he too was fighting the Russians. When the Russians pulled out, yet more bounty hunters moved in. They were tempted by a $10 million US reward offered by the administration of former President George Bush in 1992 for the return of Stinger shoulder-fired missiles that had been supplied by the West to the Afghans during the Russian war. Some 100 Stingers, probably mostly non-operational, remain in the hands of bin Laden and the Taliban.
      Anybody considering taking up the FBI's offer should be aware that bin Laden has responded in kind. In 1998, bin Laden issued a bounty of $10,000 US to his followers for every American killed. (Jonkers)
( Calgary Herald , Canada , 30 Sep 01) //D. Leppard) (PJK)

Al-QAIDA THREATENS MUSLIM GOVERNMENTS -- One of the reasons that the U.S. drive for a coalition against terrorism has been supported by many Middle East governments is that they are also targeted. This was reflected in three days of court testimony earlier this year by Jamal Ahmed Fadl, a former mid-level operative in the Qaida network. He said that the organization advocated a destabilizing brand of Islamic fundamentalism in a number of Middle Eastern and Central Asian regimes, at the same time that it declared a jihad on the United States .
      During his testimony in federal court last February he described Qaida's assistance to groups working against governments in Algeria , Syria , Chechnya , Turkey , Jordan , Eritrea , Tajikistan , the Philippines and Lebanon . The strategy is that, if the US leaves the area, current Muslim regimes will collapse and bin Laden and his crowd will be able turn them into fundamentalist Islamic states.
       Although Fadl mentioned working with Iraqis who were members of Qaida, he did not identify any group in Iraq that opposed President Saddam Hussein. He testified repeatedly about bin Laden's criticism of the Iraqi dictator, sometimes for attacking Muslims and killing women and children, but most importantly for not believing "most of Islam" and for setting up his own political-religious group, the Ba'ath.
      Fadl's testimony was an important piece of the case against bin Laden and 21 other defendants in the August 1998 bombing of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania (Jonkers)
(Intl Herald Tribune, 1Oct01 & Wpost Service /W. Pincus) (http://www.iht.com) (T. Hart)

EBOLA-STYLE VIRUS SWEEPS AFGHAN FRONTIER -- An outbreak of a highly contagious disease, Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF), that causes patients to bleed to death from every orifice, was confirmed yesterday on Pakistan's frontier with Afghanistan. At least 75 people have caught the disease so far and eight have died. An isolation ward has been set up in the regional hospital at Queta in Baluchistan , on the border with Afghanistan . An international appeal for help has been launched.
      CCHF has similar effects to the Ebola virus. Both viruses damage arteries, veins and other blood vessels and lead to the eventual collapse of major organs. As one doctor put it, a patient suffering from hemorrhagic fever "literally melts in front of your eyes". Dr Akhlaq Hussain, the hospital's medical superintendent, said: "The first cases came in June. There were a number of deaths, but at first we did not know what was the cause." A number of blood samples were sent to Pakistan 's national virology testing centre in Islamabad . "When the results came back we knew we were dealing with Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever." The first known case of the disease was among Russian soldiers serving in the Crimea in 1944 and then among villagers living near the Congolese city of Kisangani in 1956. Not until 1969 were scientists able to isolate the single virus common to both. The virus is widely distributed in the blood of sheep, cattle and other mammals across eastern Europe, Asia and Africa . It can be passed to man by a species of tick, Hyalomma marginatum, common in the same areas.
      The doctor said: "It would seem there is a reservoir of the virus in Afghanistan ." There are fears of an epidemic if millions of refugees flee across the frontier into Pakistan . "The virus is carried by domestic animals, and if they come in large numbers with large numbers of animals we can expect many more cases." (Jonkers)
(10/04/01/Tim Butcher) ( PJK)

INTERNET LANGUAGE APPEALS -- Subscribers to internet servers in Central Asia and Afghanistan have received email adverts for American citizens who can speak Farsi, Pashto, Dari, Turkmen and Uzbek, all languages of Afghanistan and Central Asia . Other languages needed are Urdu, spoken in Pakistan , and Arabic. " US citizenship required for secret security clearances, positions are also available for non-US citizens," reads an email from Worldwide Language Resources. "Positions available for language instructors, interpreters, translators, analysts, human intelligence, area experts, liaison elements, transcription technicians and interceptors," the email says. "Current or previous security clearance highly desirable."
 Another US-based organization, All World Language Consultants, wants Uzbek linguists who "must have been granted or be able to obtain a minimum of a Department of Defense security clearance with no felony record".
 Former CIA agents are cited to have said that in the past seven years Western intelligence organizations have failed to penetrate any of the extremist groups which have joined al-Qa'eda, the global network led by bin Laden. According to the article's author in Lahore , now we know why: the organizations do not have people who even speak the languages used by the terrorists. (Jonkers)
(UK/Telegraph 29/09/01 //Ahmend Rashid/Lahore)


Virus exploits fears over war on terror -- Adestructive virus, which tries to exploit anxiety generated by approaching military action, has been released on the Internet.
      Vote, a mass mailing virus that affects only Windows PCs, normally comes in an email with the subject line "Fwd: Peace Between America And Islam !", inviting users to "vote" on peace by clicking on an attachment, which in reality contains malicious code. If a user open the attachment (normally called WTC.EXE), the virus attempts to delete files associated with the user's anti-virus program, overwrite HTML files and download Trojan horse files from the Internet. Worse still, it attempts to format a user's hard disk when a user next tries to reboot. (Levine's Newsbits 25 Sep01)

Bush defends expanded wiretap, detention powers. President Bush defended Tuesday his administration's request for expanded wiretap and detention powers, saying they were vital to the war on terrorism. Bush used a brief appearance at FBI headquarters in Washington to lobby for his proposed anti- terrorism package, which has run into opposition among Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill who fear it would curb U.S. civil liberties. (Levine 25 Sep01)

National ID card idea kindles old debate  Oracle Chief's Proposal Raises Constitutional, Feasibility Issues. Oracle CEO Larry Ellison's call this weekend for a national ID card system has ignited a raging debate over an issue that has simmered in the United States since the 1930s.

Terrorists and steganography:  Guess what? Osama Bin Laden uses steganography. According to nameless "U.S. officials and experts" terrorist groups are "hiding maps and photographs of terrorist targets, and posting instructions for terrorist activities, on sports chat rooms, pornographic bulletin boards and other Web sites." (Levine/25/09/01)


BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY, by William Burroughs, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, October, 2001. When a Chinese fighter collided with an American EP-3E Aries II reconnaissance plane on April 1, 2001, it was merely the most recent incident in a long string dating back to the end of WWII. Burrows (author of "Deep Black"), a professor of journalism at New York University and founder and director of its Science and Environmental Reporting Program, uses a host of personal interviews among his many sources, and details for the first time the secret American reconnaissance
missions against the Soviet Union, China, North Korea and North Vietnam. (Macartney)

ONE PAGE COMMENTARY, "Crushing Terrorism and Protecting America: Common Sense and Public Strategy" by Robert Steele, suggests that a new balance is needed between capabilities for traditional war ($250B), special operations including counter-terrorism and crime fighting ($50B), peacekeeping operations including diplomacy and economic assistance ($50B) and home front defense ($50B).


     See also related reports in pdf and pps formats on various terrorism subjects and responses, including one on "Anticipated response from a terrorist Anthrax release".
http://www.potomacinstitute.org/projects/cbt/apls.htm ( Greg O'Hara www.nbcnco.com )

CHEMBIO WEAPONS AND WMD TERRORISM NEWS -- Issues covered by the listserv include: CBW state programs; chemical and biological nonproliferation treaties and verification measures; demilitarization and destruction of chemical and biological weapons; sub-state incidents involving CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear), including threats, hoaxes, intentional contaminations, poisonings or agent release; threat assessment, national and international policies and legislation. The email listserv is distributed on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. If you would like to subscribe to this free service, please email chembio-terror@miis.edu with the subject heading "subscribe" and your email address in the message body. (Wayne Livermore)


INSIDE AL-QAEDA. [ Compton ]








STRATFOR War Plan Analysis <http://www.stratfor.com/home/0109282120.htm


RE: AFGHAN OB -- Walt J. writes -- Ref WIN 36 Afghan order of battle article listing 8,000 Pakistani volunteers -- Pakistani brigades are not volunteers. They are regular forces, controlled by ISI, seconded by generals who run Pakistani Army (and Pakistan). They assisted in combat operations against the Rabbani Government to put Taliban in power. Policy and program began with Islamic Fundamentalist General-President Zia ul Haq. Principal architect of Taliban support was Major General Hamid Gul, Director of Inter Services Intelligence during late eighties.
            Ed. Response: Good point. Yes, in the article, the Pakistan ISI-controlled Army "volunteers" should have been in quotation marks.(RJ)

RE: NICE SPIES -- B. G. writes In the WIN 38-01 there is an Editor's Note that says the central bureaucracy doesn't trust the Chiefs of Station as all sources must be vetted through the central bureaucracy. This was so when I joined in 1955 and remains so, to the best of my knowledge. It's not because the "central bureaucracy" (wow, do you know how to pick a loaded term) doesn't trust the COS ; of course the CIA leaders do, otherwise those women and men wouldn't be COS. It's because there is always information available at HQS which must be checked--info from other sources not available in the field; info from other Govt agencies; info from old files. The Deutch-induced added restriction on "unsavory individuals" does risk having the negative effect written about in the WIN (and I criticized this in a 1997 academic paper).
            Ed. Response: Appreciate the comment. The sole focus of the Ed. Note was on the "unsavory individual's" limitations, requiring central legal and political (PC?) scrubbing beyond the usual central vetting and the judgments of meeting operational requirements by the COS . Your excellent comment corrects any who might have misinterpreted the Ed Note.

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