WIN 41-01 dtd 15 Oct 2001
AFIO SYMPOSIUM "Statecraft, Tradecraft and Hi-Tech:
Intelligence 2001 and Beyond" -- LAST CALL -- NOTE THAT
AGENDA IS INTACT -- Congress, White House, CIA, Office of the
Secretary of Defense, NSA, and FBI leaders remain on AFIO's speaker
list -- in spite of the War on Terrorism now in full swing.
You and your US citizen guests and
colleagues are cordially invited to take advantage of this exceptional
educational opportunity -- See the agenda and sign-up form at the AFIO
Website www.afio.com, or contact us at email@example.com.
EDITOR's NOTE: This WIN abbreviated due to demands of Symposium
Planning //R. Jonkers
-- CURRENT INTELLIGENCE
THE FBI's OPERATIONS CENTER AT WAR -- One of the
principal centers for the war on terrorism is the FBI's Strategic
Information Operations Center (SIOC), a 40,000 square ft. facility at
FBI Headquarters. More than 500 lawyers, agents, intelligence
officers and support personnel are currently working 12-hour shifts to
pursue this new kind of war that has blurred the lines between law
enforcement and intelligence. Working alongside agents from the FBI,
Customs, Secret Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and
Firearms are personnel from CIA, the Defense Department and NSA.
The center is headed by Director Thomas Pickard, who has a Deputy
Director from CIA. Their day starts at 7 a.m. with a inter-agency
coordination conference, which demonstrates that although CIA and
FBI are separate agencies operating under different laws and using
different methods, they now act together. This fact is further
demonstrated by the CIA's Counter-Terrorism Center at Langley, which
has similar cross-agency representation.
The SIOC links command centers and intelligence collectors in the US
and around the globe, including the State Department, Treasury, DoD,
CIA, NSA, and FBI field offices, as well as allied nations. The
Attorney General, who has an office within the SIOC, and the
Director of the FBI, have forged the major federal law enforcement
agencies and US attorney's offices into a combined force
coordinating evidence and intelligence from federal agencies and
providing centralized direction. The FBI's SIOC exemplifies the
impact of strong and coherent National leadership and the high
degree of motivation among the intelligence and law enforcement
personnel in this war on terrorism, which has eclipsed, at least for
the time being, the ubiquitous turf battles that pervade normal
Government and intelligence operations. (Jonkers) (Wpost 14 oct01, p.
A16 //J. McGee)
PALESTINIAN --ISRAELI ASSASSINATION WAR ESCALATES
-- Israel's far-right Tourism Minister Rehavam Zeevi has been
assassinated. He was hit three times at close range in the Hyatt Hotel
in east Jerusalem. Zeevi was one of the most controversial
politicians in Israel, reportedly advocating the ethnic cleansing of
the Palestinians. He had repeatedly called for Arabs to be transferred
out of the state and is notorious for using the line: "Let the
Arabs go back to Mecca."
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), in statements to
the Al-Manar TV in Lebanon said the shooting was a revenge attack for
Israel's killing of the PFLP leader, Abu Ali Mustafa Zibri, who had
been assassinated by the Israelis in August. Israel held Zibri
responsible for a series of PFLP car bombings. The PFLP announcement said
that the Israelis had killed one of their prominent leaders, and that
Zeevi was "one of those who have very, very right-wing points of
view on discrimination - he wants to deport Palestinians and he is
with the most severe terrorism against the Palestinians."
Israeli Prime Minister Sharon called an emergency meeting of his top
intelligence, security, military and cabinet officials to discuss the
assassination. Sharon noted that relations between Israel and
the Palestinians had entered a new era and that "things can never
be the same again." This is the first assassination
of a senior Government Minister by Palestinian terrorists since the
formation of Israel in 1948.
Israel's response is likely to be severe, and include the
re-imposition of the blockade on the Gaza and West Bank, and possible
operations against the Palestinian Authority and in Lebanon against
Hezbollah targets. There are open-source reports that elements of the
Lebanese Army are moving south and that Syrian military forces
in the area in are in a heightened state of alert. Neither of these
should be of much significance should Israel decide to strike.
This local crisis adds another burden to both US Intelligence and Policymakers
in the war against 'international terrorism' -- a phrase which
remains undefined in scope or content, providing both challenge and
opportunity, depending on our National leadership's view of our
national interests. (Jonkers) (based on AFI Research AFI@supanet.com//R.
SECTION II --
CONTEXT AND PRECEDENCE
DISRUPTION AS AN ANTI-TERRORIST WEAPON --
Disruption is one of the techniques employed by U.S. agencies to
counter indeterminate terrorist threats -- when we know
something is about to happen, but the time, place and target are
unknown. During last summer's warnings the disruption technique was
employed, and many individuals were detained. It thwarted some plots,
but it failed to halt the hijackings that caused more than 5,000
deaths at the World Trade Center and Pentagon.
We currently have intelligence indicating that further terrorist
attacks are imminent. Accordingly, the FBI has detained about 700
individuals to disrupt possible or potential al Qaeda or related
networks operating within the US. But current and former intelligence
officials warn that even such zealous efforts are not 100 percent
Additionally, since Sept. 11, the CIA has arranged for 230 suspects in
40 countries around the globe to be jailed and questioned. One notable
aspect of putting possible terrorists in the hands of foreign security
services is that states do not have the same civilized standards
and legal rights as are practiced in the United States, and use
interrogation methods that include torture and threats to family
Disruption remains an important weapon in this war. But as a senior
counter-terrorist specialist said, the approach "only buys you
time to look for more leads." For example, it worked that way in
1997 when an attempt to blow up the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi was
disrupted after Kenyan police collected documents that led to the
temporary break up of an al Qaeda cell. However, a year later, the
bombing occurred anyway. Disruption also worked in late 1999, when
intelligence gathered by the CIA forecast multiple attacks at the time
of the millennium celebrations. The CIA worked with Jordanian,
Egyptian, Canadian and Pakistani services, picking up terrorists, some
associated with al Qaeda, and moving them to either Jordan or Egypt.
Those services then received information that led to disruption of
millennium bombing plots aimed at a hotel in Amman, Jordan, and a
religious site on Jordan's Mount Ebo, in December 1999 . A
Canadian border arrest in mid-December followed by widespread
detentions among the Algerian Muslim community in the United States
and Canada resulted in foiling a plot to attack Los Angeles
International Airport and tourist targets in Washington state.
Finally, last summer, after the CIA received credible specific
warnings that Osama bin Laden was planning a major attack against U.S.
targets, the agency clandestinely worked with police and security
services in 20 foreign countries to arrange the arrest and
interrogation of al Qaeda operatives. But as we know, to
Disruption can work, it buys time, but is not foolproof -- nor,
for that matter, is anything else. In terms of intelligence
performance a dozen victories in the dark make one loss in
daylight look like we are losing the war. We must therefore
expect that the cries of "intelligence failure" will
continue, some because it is the fashion to find scapegoats based on
perfect ex-post-facto hindsight, others to stimulate an honest effort
at self-assessment to improve performance. Meanwhile the President and
key Congressional leaders like the Chairman of the House Permanent
Select Committee on Intelligence focus on providing positive,
forward-looking leadership and optimal intelligence coordination,
collaboration and effectiveness to pursue the war. The disruption
technique is one weapon in the arsenal employed, one among many.
(Jonkers) (based on Wpost 15 Oct01, p6 //W. Pincus)
PRESIDENT LIMITS CONGRESSIONAL ACCESS TO SENSITIVE SECRETS
-- After expressing his disgust at a Congressional leak, the
President ordered that access to sensitive classified material be
restricted to only eight individuals of the 535 members of Congress.
Said the President: "I want Congress to hear loud and clear:
it is unacceptable behavior to leak classified information when we
have troops at risk" To which this editor may be permitted to add --
it is unacceptable behavior for all, at any time -- period.
(Jonkers) (WashPost 10 Oct p. A1)
U.S. CONSTITUTION AND 'SECRETS': A recent op-ed
article by Professor Robert Turner, a respected authority on
Constitutional law, pointed out that limitations on Congressional
access to national security secrets by Presidents has a long,
constitutional and honorable history.
In fact, until the backlash to Vietnam, presidents for over 180 years
managed diplomatic and military secrets unconstrained by Congress.
Despite the claims of some in Congress and the media of
"rights" to access, the record establishing why Congress was
not given routine access to national security secrets is clear.
The general grant of "executive power" vested in the
president by Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution control over
intelligence and diplomatic and military secrets.
In 1776, Benjamin Franklin and his four colleagues on the
Committee of Secret Correspondence of the Continental Congress
concluded they had an "indispensable duty" to keep the
covert support of France program secret, explaining: "We find by
fatal experience that Congress consists of too many members to keep
secrets." In explaining the draft Constitution to the
American people, John Jay wrote that there were important potential
intelligence sources who would willingly confide in the secrecy of the
president but not in that of the Senate or the House. Jay
praised the new Constitution for having left the president "able
to manage the business of intelligence in such manner as prudence may
There is no constitutional basis for Congress to demand
diplomatic or military secrets, and the Constitution cannot be amended
by simple statute. The various "laws" passed by
Congress demanding secret information are no more valid than would be
"laws" telling the president whom he must nominate to be
secretary of defense. In its landmark 1936 Curtiss-Wright case,
the Supreme Court noted that a presidential decision that
release of national security information is not compatible with the
public interest "rarely, if ever, is questioned." The
court noted further that George Washington had refused to give secrets
to Congress during the 1796 dispute over funding the Jay treaty,
"a refusal the wisdom of which was recognized by the House itself
and has never since been doubted."
To do its job, Congress rarely needs sensitive details in
the national security arena. Despite the cries of some
Congressmen that presidential limitation of secrets sharing cut into
their own "constitutional prerogatives," very few members of
Congress received sensitive details about military operations in World
War II and "that enterprise produced an admirable result."
The article concluded that "...limiting the sharing of national
security secrets with Congress is a return to the constitutional
system that served us well for nearly two centuries." (Harvey)
(NY times 13 Oct 01 & WashPost 12 Oct01, p. A33, by Robert F.
Turner, Assoc. Dir. Of the Ctr for National Security Law at U of Va
School lf Law)
SECTION III --
CYBER WAR ASSESSMENT -- Since mid-July of this year,
up to seven strains of the Code Red computer worm have infected nearly
1 million computers worldwide. Media attention has heightened fears in
both the public and private sectors about cyber weapons that can
potentially inflict strategic damage. But although cyber attacks over
the internet will continue to irritate government and commercial
entities, determined attacks targeting the critical, highly-protected
government and commercial information systems that are not connected
to the Internet, such as sensitive military, banking and electric
power systems, are unlikely in the near term. The "electronic
Pearl Harbor" that experts have warned for 'wired' nations such
as the United States, will become harder -- not easier -- to pull
off. Nations and terrorist groups will need to invest increasing
amounts of funds and manpower in cyber weapons to overcome parallel
attempts to defend critical
networks. Computers designed to oversee vital operations are unique
and highly complex, and so must be the cyber weapons that strike them.
To conclude, cyber war will probably
evolve in much the same way as traditional warfare: Well-financed
adversaries will steadily sharpen their battle plans to defeat
increasingly complicated and effective countermeasures. It will be
neither easy, simple nor cheap. (Jonkers) (STRATFOR 9 Oct 01)
SECTION IV --
I read with horror the article "Special Forces Leave for War
Quietly, Without Fanfare" in the New York Times dated 19 Oct 01.
As an SF trooper, the thought of my name/unit/functional
capability/wife's name/wife's work location being transmitted to the
world frightens the hell out of me. I request that your
organization help shake things up a bit. Please help send a
message to the press and to our fellow troopers (and families) that
the press is not looking out for our best interest, that our lives
depend operations security (OPSEC), and that the country/world does
not need to know everything about us, what we do and how we do it.
MEMBERS - let's lean on this one! (author's name withheld).
Weekly Intelligence Notes (WINs) contain commentaries on
intelligence-related events and issues produced and edited 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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