Weekly Intelligence Notes #35-02
WIN 35-02 dtd 2 September 2002
Weekly Intelligence Notes (WINs) are produced and edited by Roy Jonkers for non-profit educational uses by AFIO members, ISIS associates and WIN subscribers. RADM (ret) Don Harvey contributes articles to selected WINs.
ED. NOTE: The unfortunate sudden departure (for medical reasons) of Mrs. Gretchen Campbell has severely impacted on the workload of the remaining small staff. We are fully stretched. This WIN is brief and late, and so will the next one be. But you WILL receive 50 WINs again this year.
ED. NOTE: An Agenda and Registration package of the AFIO National Intelligence War Symposium 2002 will be sent out this week, by e-mail and mail. I urge you to sign up early. It will help us. We plan another great, expanded, symposium, at a very moderate price, thanks to numerous contributing volunteers. AFIO members will have a few weeks for priority registration, before other professional intelligence associations are also invited. Our capacity is 250 attendees.
CONTENTS of this WIN
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IRAQ INTELLIGENCE -- As the war with Iraq accelerates and emerges from covert to a killer strike -- ( well beyond the constant ongoing patrolling of Iraqi airspace, intelligence collection, and decade-long bombing of local Iraqi air defense sites, with some 100,000 fighter-bomber-reconnaissance sorties flown over the past decade) -- it may be of interest to see the Iraqi "threat" as it is reflected in the media.
The precise nature of Iraq's arsenal of chemical and biological weapons is said to be unclear. The CIA is reported to hold that Iraq has residual stocks of biological and chemical weapons manufactured before the 1991 war - which casts some doubt as to their operational status but Iraq is also said to be seeking to acquire new weapons. Iraq's progress in acquiring nuclear weapons is said to be uncertain. The bottom line of this threat seems to be that there are a number of Iraqi scientists with the knowledge that may be utilized -- a line of thinking that leads to the conclusion that the Iraq must be cleansed of scientific manpower.
As to airborne delivery vehicles, the UN/US inspection/intelligence officials criss-crossed Iraq searching for a rumored new drone that could carry BioChem munitions. Not a shred of evidence was found until December 17, 1998, when a British Tornado took photos of a ruined base southeast of Baghdad and found rows of new drones in a hangar - Czech-made L-29s, a light trainer jet that Iraq had purchased and converted to unmanned flight. The hangar was struck, but a few drones, of doubtful capabilities, survived. In a 2000 report, CIA cited a new series of aerial tests involving L-29s, believed to be modified for biological warfare purposes.
Besides the drones the Iraqi military also experimented with two other kinds of airborne delivery systems. One was an adaptation of an industrial aerosol sprayer, with the nozzles modified to spray bacteria, to be mounted on helicopters for close-range attacks. The other device was a torpedo-shaped 500-gallon container mounted on the wings of Mirage F-1 fighter jets, like a reserve fuel tank. Iraqi engineers added a British-made electric valve and aerosol sprayer adapted for BioChem warfare -- in particular, anthrax-like bacteria - according to UN documents. Four of these were found and destroyed. The delivery capability and killing power of these types of weapons are limited by many factors, including wind, sunlight, and even the size of aerosol droplets, a terror nuisance weapon but not a military tie-breaker.
In terms of missiles, Iraq possess two types of short-range missiles (the liquid-fueled Al-Samoud, and the solid-fuel Ababil), both with less than the permitted range of 100 miles, and mobile launchers. According to CIA reports cited, "a low level operational capability could be achieved in the near future." Iraq is suspected to be interested in increasing the range of these missiles, and still has the infrastructure to progress on this course. In addition, there is speculation that Iraq might have cobbled together a few Scud missiles from parts of the destroyed ones. A Pentagon intelligence official is quoted with the theory that "The parts are probably dispersed, but on short notice you could pull them together into a working missile and shoot it." This sounds like an Iraqi Superman theory of threat analysis.
Iraq has the knowledge and capability to outfit its missiles with BioChem warheads, despite severe technical problems they encountered in their efforts. In a declaration to the UN in 1995, Iraq acknowledged filling 25 Scud warheads with BioChem agents, including anthrax spores and deadly botulinium toxin. These warheads were never found.
Unless the President reveals more and better intelligence information, this appears to be the threat -- from a third or fourth-class military power, facing superior nearby powers and potential enemies to the east and west (Iran and Israel), under the most intense super-power intelligence scrutiny. However, there is obviously more to this threat than meets the eye in terms of US National grand strategy and inevitably, domestic politics and elections. And despite all the fuss and feathers in the international and national political discourses, and the hand-wringing over the reality of this "threat," the debate is over, the war is on, and Saddam, an unlamented minor dictator, one among many, will be history within a year, if not much sooner. The world will go on. (Jonkers) (WashPost 5Sep 02, pA1/26 / /M. Allen & K. DeYoung)
AFIO - #Sept 01 - IRAQI SANCTIONS AVOIDANCE INTELLIGENCE -- Largely unreported in the media, the US/UN has a continuing and sizable effort (sometimes involving up to 20 ships from a number of nations) underway to enforce UN sanctions on Iraq and to collect maritime intelligence on the tactics of Iraq and its confederates to circumvent the sanctions. It was recently reported that the US has begun targeting vessels as small as 40-foot sailboats (called dhows in the Gulf) in stepped up enforcement to stop oil smuggling out of Iraq. As of mid-August, 298 ships had been detained and checked for smuggling in the Gulf, almost three times the total in all of 2001, and yielding 143,000 barrels a month. In August, the Navy began patrolling the northern Red Sea, presumably based on intelligence that some illegal oil ( Jordan takes 110,000 barrels a day by truck) is being transshipped through the Jordanian port of Aqaba. The program reflects international concern that Saddam Hussein is selling more illegal oil than heretofore, using the proceeds to rebuild his arms supplies. In total, the sanctions enforcement maritime effort intercepts less than ten percent of the estimated $280 million of illegal oil sold by Iraq each month. As one Dubai-based oil trader put it, "The policing is somewhat irrelevant in terms of its impact on the markets. But the key point is that it acts as a deterrent for larger, more established companies from getting involved, which could move much larger volumes."
The blockade program is about all the UN can do to curtail the illegal commerce since it is not willing to cut off the 180,000 barrels a day going to Syria, the 110,000 a day to Jordan, or the 50,000 going to Turkey. The Gulf smugglers attempt to avoid the blockade by hugging the Iranian coastline before shuttling across the Persian Gulf to the UAE. Much of the seized product is marine fuel, which is easier to sell than crude oil. (Harvey) ( Bloomberg.com 16 Aug '02, /// Sean Evers from Manama, Bahrain)
INTELLIGENCE KEY WEAPON IN AFGHANISTAN AIR CAMPAIGN -- Afghanistan is proving to be a watershed in gathering and integrating intelligence about an elusive foe in some of the world's most difficult terrain. Difficulties have ranged from desert sand and wind storms to blizzards in the mountains. The air campaign is not over, but analysts and senior military officials are hailing it as the first conflict in which intelligence was the primary U.S. weapon. Intelligence-gathering aircraft are overhead all the time, and all are linked in some fashion. If for some reason they can't communicate with each other, they at least can communicate through the combined air operations center (CAOC), a state-of-the-art facility at Prince Sultan AB in Saudi Arabia.
The information networking task sounds deceptively simple. For example, a Rivet Joint orbiting over Pakistan or signals intelligence satellite in space picks up a communication indicating Al Qaeda activity in some corner of Afghanistan. That SIGINT "tipper" is sent to the CAOC. Operators there look for the fastest intelligence platform--Joint-STARS, AWACS or P-3, for example--and send it to the hot spot to begin controlling the local engagement using its wide-area sensors. Meanwhile, a slower Predator UAV is turned and starts taking its acute but narrow field-of-view sensors to the scene. A Joint-STARS ground surveillance radar can look over a wide area and find moving objects, for instance. So having Joint- STARS cue the Predator was very effective. The Predator shows up and relieves the manned aircraft, which moves off to the next problem. The UAV then provides precise target coordinates to an AC-130 gunship or a strike aircraft. But these simple tasks of matching Predators, P-3s, Rivet Joints, U-2s and AC-130 were hard to learn.
The CAOC (Combined Air Operations Center) in Saudi Arabia has proved itself an essential part of the Afghanistan campaign. An official said. "Without it, there would have been chaos. It was the one place that had a complete picture of the air campaign. "
We can look forward to hearing more about the air and ground campaign at the AFIO National Intelligence War Symposium 2002 on 1 and 2 November. And incidentally, the reference to the central role of the CAOC in Saudi Arabia again highlights the importance of the Saudi Government as an overt or silent ally, particularly given the next war in the region -- Iraq. (Jonkers) (Aviation Week & Space Technology, March 11, 2002, Pg. 24 //D. Fulghum)
FINANCIAL WAR ON TERROR, A SUCCESS?? -- According to a 26-page draft Treasury Department report, to be issued next week, the US has made backers of terrorism more vulnerable by forcing them to turn to cash and other, riskier means of financing their operations. The report claims that the financial measures against the terrorists have "bankrupted their institutions, and beggared their bombers." Some $112 Million in assets have been frozen worldwide, of which about $34 Million in the US. The report notes that the financial steps taken have forced al Qaeda to "re-position its assets and resources" but also concluded that the terrorist network retains the financial and logistical means "to strike again how, when and where it chooses." It may be noted also that a recent United Nations report found that the financial war on terrorism had largely stalled. (Jonkers) (WashPost 7Sep02, p. A6)
E-TERRORISM -- Doomsday predictions of a "digital Pearl Harbor" have persisted in the year since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11.
CORPORATE SECURITY OFFICERS ASSESS CYBER RISKS -- A new poll of 1,000+ chief security officers (CSOs) and security executives conducted by IDG's CSO magazine reveals top concerns of today's security experts, as well as insight into the emerging CSO job function. The poll, released in tandem with the launch of CSO magazine, reveals 59% of CSOs believe electronic attacks (such as viruses) pose the biggest concern to their company over physical attacks (8%) or electronic attacks with physical consequences (3%). Nearly half (49%) anticipate a major cyber attack by a terrorist organization (i.e., Al Qaeda) will happen within the next 3 months to one year, with only 7% saying it will never happen. (Levine 08/30)
SACRED SECRETS: How Soviet Intelligence Operations Changed American History, by Jerrold and Leona Schecter. Brassey's, Inc. 402 pages, $26.95
Senator Patrick Daniel Moynihan's favored oratorical hobbyhorse was the claimed irrelevance of intelligence agencies, foreign and domestic. Rather than contribute towards sensible foreign policy decisions, he contended, the spooks spent most of their time in meaningless spy-vs-spy games. I suggest that Sen. Moynihan pick up a copy of Sacred Secrets, by the talented Washington writer-couple Jerrold and Leona Schecter, and flip to page 187, where they pose several questions: "How did the activities of Soviet intelligence agents change American government policies? Did they really affect American political thinking and cultural life? Did they change American history? The answer is, 'They did.'" And then the Schecters proceed to examples documented in their intensively researched survey of Soviet intelligence, which draws upon archival work and interviews in Moscow, as well as astute examination of the famed VENONA intercepts of USSR spy traffic:
---"The influence of American pro-Communist ideologues in the government heightened tensions that brought about the war between Japan and the United States." The Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin feared being drawn into a two-front war with Germany and Japan; hence it was essential to turn Tokyo's attentions elsewhere. The Soviets dispatched an intelligence operative to Washington, where he met with Harry Dexter White, a high Treasury Department official, at the Old Ebbitt Grill. White had been under the control of GRU (Red Army intelligence) since the early 1930s, and he willingly followed Soviet instructions. Over the next month, in his role as a key economic adviser, White steered the Roosevelt Administration into bargaining demands that he knew the Japanese would not accept, chiefly withdrawal of their troops from China and Manchuria and "an end to expansionism." He also urged an oil embargo -- a taunt that led to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
---"An idealistic American diplomat gave the Soviet Union the West's bargaining positions at Yalta, helping to bring down the Iron Curtain on Eastern Europe." Here the villain was Alger Hiss, of the State Department, whose role as a Soviet agent is no longer arguable by serious persons. Soviet documents examined by the Schecters "reveal that he secretly met with a high ranking officer of the GRU…during the Yalta Conference and laid out for the Soviets all the strengths and weaknesses of the Western allies' bargaining position." Thus Stalin knew the points on which the Allies would yield, giving him a blue print on obtaining Soviet domination of Eastern Europe.
---"A high ranking American bureaucrat gave the Soviets the printing plates with which they issues so many occupation marks in postwar Germany that the Western allies had to change the currency to stop inflation; this led to the Berlin Crisis of 1948." Once again, the American doing Moscow's bidding was White, in conjunction with Treasury colleague Nathan Silvermaster. At the Teheran Conference of 1943, the British and the Americans agreed to a common German occupation currency, Allied Military, or AM, marks, to be printed in the U. S. At White's insistence, and over vehement objections from Generals George Marshall, Dwight Eisenhower, and others duplicate printing plates went to Moscow. A Soviet boast overheard in a VENONA intercept stated that White, "following our instructions…attained the positive decision of the Treasury Department to provide the Soviet side with the plates for engraving Soviet occupations marks, namely the consent to produce for the Red Army two billion occupation marks." Predictably, the Russians flooded Western zones of Germany with AM marks, leading to a currency crisis in 1948 that resulted in the Berlin blockade.
'Sacred Secrets' is an important contribution to intelligence literature. The authors had long experience in Moscow, where Mr. Schecter ran the Time magazine bureau. As serious historians, they gained the confidence of former Soviet intelligence officers, who filled in blanks in the surviving record with interviews. Earlier books included the memoir of KGB officer Pavel Sudaplatov, and the story of Oleg Penkovsky, accurately titled "The Spy Who Saved the World," for his work during the Cuban missile crisis. Reliance is also made on memoirs of KGB veterans that are available only in Russian -- a major source, for instance, for the story of Harry White's scheming to get the U. S. and Japan into war. These sources enabled the Schecters to flesh out the many hidden meanings of the VENONA intercepts. What is not recognized by the general public is that the VENONA papers, standing alone, are nigh unintelligible. Through diligent research, the Schecters fix the missing pieces into the mosaic. In my estimate, their analysis of VENONA is the best yet published. Their broad picture also contains intriguing footnotes. In 1948, for instance, accusations that Hiss and White were Soviet agents touched off a harsh political war over the issue of "communists in government." For security reasons, the existence of VENONA was tightly held. (The Schecters convincingly dash arguments, by Mr. Moynihan and others, that President Truman never learned of the intercepts.) When the Hiss and White names showed up in VENONA Colonel Carter Clarke, the head of Amy intelligence, feared that the program might be embroiled in politics. As a prophylactic measure, he dispatched aide Oliver Kirby to "brief a small select group that included House Republican leader Les Arens and Washington Post publisher Philip Graham." The revelations "deeply concerned" Mr. Graham. According to what Oliver Kirby told the Schecters, "Graham knew that the Democrats were in trouble. VENONA was a time bomb that could explode and destroy the party of the New Deal…" So his staunchly liberal paper did not endorse a candidate in the 1948 presidential election, and in 1952 he campaigned for General Eisenhower over Adlai Stevenson. Mr. Graham never revealed that he knew the VENONA secret. Sacred Secrets should cause a serious rethinking by persons such as the esteemed Senator Moynihan about the role of intelligence in foreign affairs. Like it or not, the game is a serious one, and it must be played (Reviewed by Joseph C. Goulden)
Larry B. writes on the JEWISH WAR: Ref WIN 34, thought you might want to know that the "Jewish War" by Josephus is available in a current edition of the "The New Complete Works of Josephus" Translated by William Whiston and Commentary by Paul Maier. Published by Kregel Publications, 1999; Grand Rapids, MI ISBN 0-8254-2924-2(hardcover) and ISBN 0-88254-2948-x (soft cover). The section on the "Jewish War" provides some very interesting reading and parallels to the present situation to the situation in the Middle East, including the U.S. role.)
Peter O. writes - I saw JACK THOMAS today in his OSD/C3I office. Amazing at 92 he is still so active and still sharp as a tack. Jack revealed that he had almost completed his autobiography. His thrust was to create a training manual for intelligence officers using his personal experiences as a guide. As you may know, Jack's eyesight is failing. He was working with an enlisted aide, but her Navy unit was mobilized and she is gone. All work on the manuscript has stopped as a consequence. I don't have to make the case to you of how valuable and interesting Jack's autobiography is likely to be. What a shame it would be if he were unable to complete it because of lack of administrative support. Do you think there might be an AFIO member who would want to work with Jack to complete his manuscript? PS. Jack doesn't know that I have written you. Anyone interested? Contact Peter at email@example.com and let us know too! (RJ)
EDITOR's PRIVILEGE - My fine Sailboat for sale - My bones are getting too old. 1973 RANGER SAILBOAT for sale. Excel. condition. Has afforded many great days of sailing. Book $6,000, Sale Price $4,250. Bring me a reasonable and solid offer and you can own it. Great Fall sailing is at hand. HULL: Fiberglass/ LENGTH: 24ft, BEAM: 8ft, DRAFT: 4ft
This fixed keel, fiberglass-hulled sloop is a sleek, fast, and hardy day-sailor or weekender (sleeps two in cabin). Includes 4 sails, a recently overhauled Mercury outboard motor, a marine radio, potty in cabin, cushions, life jackets etc. Fully equipped. See it at Herrington Harbor North, Chesapeake Bay, just south of Annapolis. Roy Jonkers at Sailboat@afio.com
A picture of the sailboat can be viewed here: https://www.afio.com/images/Yacht.jpg Now picture yourself on it, discovering all the secrets Bays, Sounds, Lakes and Inlets have in store for you.
NOTE: The next WIN -- and a separate e-mail going to
all members --
will provide an Agenda, etc. for the
AFIO National Intelligence War Symposium 2002,
to be held in McLean Virginia 31 October 2002 - 3 November 2002
We are planning another WINNER! (RJ)
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