AFIO Weekly Intelligence Notes #01-11 dated 11 January 2011

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Pakistan Releases top Al Qaeda-Linked Terrorist Leader. A senior Pakistani terrorist linked to al Qaeda and the country's intelligence service has been released from "protective custody."

Qari Saifullah Akhtar, the leader of the Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HUJI, or the Movement of Islamic Holy War), was released in early December after being taken into protective custody in August 2010. HUJI is closely linked to al Qaeda and the Taliban. Ilyas Kashmiri, the operational commander for HUJI, also serves as al Qaeda's military commander and is a senior leader on al Qaeda's external operations council. HUJI is also supported by Pakistan's military and the Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate.

Akhtar's release was first reported in The News on Dec. 28, 2010. US intelligence officials contacted by The Long War Journal said that they believe the report is accurate.

Pakistani intelligence officials took Akhtar into custody in August after he was supposedly wounded in a US Predator strike in North Waziristan, The News reported. He traveled to Peshawar and then Rawalpindi, where he was taken into custody and then moved to Lahore for treatment and subsequently placed in an ISI safe house.

A US intelligence official told The Long War Journal that it is thought that Akhtar was not arrested, but "placed in protective custody so he can be treated for his injuries and debriefed."

Akhtar was placed into custody at the same time that five Americans who were recruited by the HUJI leader were convicted in a Pakistani court of attempting join al Qaeda to carry out attacks for the terror network. The five Americans were recruited by Akhtar via the Internet and traveled to Pakistan in November 2009. They were arrested by police in Sargodha before they could travel to North Waziristan to join al Qaeda.

Another US intelligence official said that the timing of Akhtar's detention and the conviction of the five American jihadis was "no coincidence."

"Pakistan's ISI often brings in its top assets when the heat is turned up; they are placed in safehouses to avoid being targeted, or to get them out of the limelight," the official told The Long War Journal.

"This has happened in the recent past, with LeT [Lashkar-e-Taiba] emir Hafiz Saeed and JeM [Jaish-e-Mohammed] emir Masood Azhar after Mumbai in 2008," the official said, referring to the deadly terror assault on the Indian city of Mumbai that killed more than 170 people.

Both Saeed and Azhar were identified by the Indian government as being involved in the Mumbai attacks. Both were placed under house arrest and freed months later by the Pakistani government.

Qari Saifullah Akhtar and the Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami have worked with the Taliban and al Qaeda for more than a decade. In 2002, The Friday Times described the HUJI as "the biggest militia we know nothing about."

HUJI was formed by Islamist extremists inside Pakistan's Punjab province in the early 1980s to help battle the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. After the defeat of the Soviets in 1989, HUJI turned its focus to fighting the Indian Army inside Jammu and Kashmir. The group maintained camps throughout Pakistan. The largest camp, in Kotli in Azad Kashmir, had "a capacity for training 800 warriors." As of 2002, more than 650 HUJI fighters had been killed fighting the Indian Army.

Like many Pakistani-based jihadi groups fighting in Kashmir, the HUJI received support from Pakistan's military and the Inter-Services Intelligence. The group has offices in more than 40 locations inside Pakistan and maintained "organized seminaries in Karachi, and Chechnya, [Xinxiang], Uzbekistan and Tajikistan." Its members have participated in attacks and fighting in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, Chechnya, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan. The leader of the Bangladeshi branch of HUJI was one of the original signatories of Osama bin Laden's 1998 fatwa against the West. This fatwa, or religious ruling, established the International Islamic Front for Jihad against the Jews and Crusaders and officially incorporated various Islamic terror groups such as Ayman al Zawahiri's Egyptian Islamic Jihad.

Akhtar took control of the HUJI after the group's leader was killed fighting the Soviets in 1985. He expanded HUJI's infrastructure throughout Pakistan and in Afghanistan. Akhtar largely stayed off the radar until he emerged as being part of a plot to overthrow the Pakistani government in 1995, when he was implicated along with Major General Zahirul Islam Abbasi and three other senior officers in an attempt to assassinate senior military leaders during a Corps Commanders Conference at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi. Charges against Akhtar were dismissed after he testified against his conspirators. Abbasi was released from detention after President Musharraf took power in a coup in 1999.

The Pakistani government released Akhtar in 1996, and he promptly fled to Afghanistan, where he became a close confidant and adviser to Taliban leader Mullah Omar. Three members in the Taliban's cabinet and 22 judges were members of HUJI. Akhtar has been described as a "crucial figure" in the efforts to unite Mullah Omar and Osama bin Laden.

HUJI established training camps in Kandahar, Kabul, and Khost. Taliban military and police forces were also trained at HUJI camps. HUJI became a critical force in the Taliban's efforts to consolidate power in Afghanistan in the 1990s, and more than 300 HUJI fighters were killed fighting against the Northern Alliance. HUJI also used its bases in Afghanistan to conduct operations in Chechnya, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan.

Akhtar accompanied Mullah Omar as he fled the US onslaught during Operation Enduring Freedom after the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. Omar moved his operations to Quetta in Pakistan's Baluchistan province. Akhtar took shelter in South Waziristan, where he was born, and established links with Baitullah Mehsud, the former commander of the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan who was killed in a US Predator strike in August 2009.

After being implicated in two attempts to assassinate Pervez Musharraf in December 2003, Akhtar fled to Saudi Arabia, ultimately taking refuge in the United Arab Emirates. The UAE arrested Akhtar in August 2004 and deported him to Pakistan, where he was held for more than two years without trial. The Pakistani security services released Akhtar in May 2007 after the Supreme Court began inquiring about a number of missing persons.

Pakistani security forces detained Akhtar once again in February 2008 after he was implicated in several bombings, the most prominent being the October 2007 suicide attack in Karachi that aimed to assassinate former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto as she returned from exile to begin her political campaign.

Bhutto, who was later assassinated in an attack in Rawalpindi in December 2007, implicated Akhtar in her posthumously released book. "I was informed of a meeting that had taken place in Lahore where the bomb blasts were planned. However, a bomb maker was needed for the bombs," Bhutto wrote. "Enter Qari Saifullah Akhtar, a wanted jihadi terrorist who had tried to overthrow my second government in the 1990s. He had been extradited by the United Arab Emirates and was languishing in the Karachi central jail. According to my sources, the officials in Lahore had turned to Qari for help. His liaison with elements in the government was a radical who was asked to make the bombs and he himself asked for a fatwa making it legitimate to oblige. He got one."

The Pakistani government released Akhtar from jail on bail in June 2008 after claiming that the evidence was insufficient to link him to recent attacks. Akhtar is believed to have fled to North Waziristan.

Akhtar is one of the main leaders of the September 2008 suicide attack on the Marriott hotel in Islamabad. Akhtar acted in concert with Qari Zafar, the leader of the al Qaeda and Taliban-linked Fedayeen-i-Islam. Zafar was killed in the Feb. 24, 2010, airstrike in the town of Dargi Mandi near Miramshah in North Waziristan. [LongWarJournal/3January2011]

Mongolian Spy "Lured" to UK to be Arrested. A senior member of the Mongolian security services was lured to Britain so he could be arrested and jailed under a European Arrest Warrant, his lawyer said yesterday.

Bat Khurts, the head of the executive office of Mongolia's National Security Council, thought he was coming to the UK for talks on Muslim fundamentalism. But his solicitor said the Foreign Office was "duplicitously luring Mr. Khurts to his arrest and imprisonment at the behest of the German government".

The 41-year-old was arrested at Heathrow in September and will appear before City of Westminster magistrates today to fight extradition to Germany. He is accused of involvement in the kidnap of a Mongolian national in France, who was allegedly drugged and returned to Mongolia from Berlin. [Johnson/Independent/5January2011] 

Frustrated Family Wants CIA Detainee's Remains. The family of Gul Rahman is still trying to recover his remains for burial, months after learning that he was stripped naked, doused in cold water and then left to die in a CIA-run Afghan prison known as the Salt Pit.

Suspected of links to al-Qaida, Rahman was picked up in the early morning hours of Oct. 29, 2002 from a home in Islamabad and taken with four other people to a CIA black site called the Salt Pit near the Kabul Airport.

Rahman died Nov. 20, 2002, but his death was not known until revealed by an Associated Press investigation in March. Since then, appeals by his family - Afghan refugees living in Pakistan since the 1980s - for his remains have gone unanswered.

"It has been a mental torture for his family," said Dr. Gharat Baheer, who was picked up with Gul Rahman. Baheer spent six months at the Salt Pit and six years in Afghan prisons before being released in 2008. Baheer said the family has yet to even receive confirmation of his death from the United States.

"His wife and his mother are in agony," said Baheer. "They want to have a religious ceremony."

Baheer, who spoke to the AP last week, is in regular touch with Rahman's family, who he says are living in a refugee camp outside the Pakistani frontier city of Peshawar. Baheer said they fear that if they protest too loudly, the U.S. will press Pakistan to harass them or even expel them from the country.

Rahman's brother, Habib Rahman, spoke to the AP in April, saying his family hopes U.S. authorities will return the remains. "We want them to let us give him a religious burial," he said. Reached by the AP last week, he said he was too distraught to speak again.

The CIA on Monday declined to comment on the return of Rahman's remains. The agency has said that its detention and interrogation program is over and it's focused on preventing future terrorist attacks. An AP Freedom of Information Act request for Rahman's autopsy report was rejected - a decision upheld on appeal by the Justice Department in November.

The Rahman family has sought the help of the International Committee for the Red Cross both in Peshawar and in Afghanistan.

"But the Red Cross isn't able to get anything from the Americans," Baheer said.

Baheer is the son-in-law of wanted militant Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, whose al-Qaida-allied group Hezb-e-Islami is battling U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan.

Najum-ul-Saqib, the Red Cross communication officer in Pakistan, told AP on Tuesday that the Geneva-based organization has registered Rahman as a missing person and has sent out requests for more information. "Beyond that we are not authorized to say anything more," said Saqib.

Gul Rahman's name had not been previously known until the AP identified him as the detainee who had died at Salt Pit. Rahman was the only detainee known to have died in a CIA-run prison, and his death stands as a cautionary tale.

Former CIA officials say Rahman was acting as a conduit between Hekmatyar and al-Qaida. Hekmatyar's insurgent group is believed to be allied to al-Qaida. The former officials said the CIA had been tracking Rahman's cell phone at the time of his capture and were hoping the suspected militant would provide information about Hekmatyar's whereabouts.

But Rahman never cracked under questioning, refusing to help the CIA find Hekmatyar. Former CIA officials described him as one of the toughest detainees to pass through the CIA's network of secret prisons.

So far no CIA officer has been formally punished for the death of Rahman, who died of hypothermia. But federal prosecutors are re-examining his death, along with a small number of other cases involving CIA detainee abuses.

In March, the FBI rejected a Freedom of Information Act request the AP submitted for autopsy records in Rahman's death, saying it was relevant to "a pending or prospective law enforcement proceeding."

The AP appealed, but the Justice Department upheld the decision in November because releasing the information "could reasonably be expected to interfere with enforcement proceedings." The Justice Department added that disclosing the autopsy report could cause "foreseeable harm" to the ongoing investigation.

Baheer said Gul Rahman, in his early 30s, went by the nom de guerre Abdul Menan when he served as one of Hekmatyar's elite guards. But when he was picked up in 2002, he had left Hekmatyar's service and returned to his family at Shamshatoo refugee camp, near Peshawar, said Baheer.

At the Salt Pit, the code name for an abandoned brick factory that became a forerunner of a network of secret CIA-run prisons, Baheer said his own interrogation often consisted of being tied to a chair while his American interrogators, wearing masks, would sit on his stomach. For hours he would be left hanging, naked and shivering.

"They were very cruel." [Goldman/AP/5January2011] 

FBI Spy Catcher to Run New York Counterintelligence. A veteran FBI agent who helped coordinate the case against an elderly Northwest Washington couple who were spying for Cuba has been promoted to run the New York office's huge counterintelligence program.

Randall C. Thysse, 48, was a counterintelligence section chief at FBI headquarters in 2009 when retired State Department officer Walter Kendall Myers and his wife Gwendolyn, both in their seventies, were arrested on charges of spying for Cuba. (Last July Walter Myers was sentenced to life in prison, his wife 81 months.)

It was Thysse's second headquarters stint in counterintelligence. From 2002 through 2004, he was responsible for Cuban espionage and internal security.

In his new job as special agent in charge of the FBI's New York Field Office Counterintelligence Division, Thysse will be responsible for tracking spies from every nation trying to steal American secrets. The United Nations has often been described as "a nest of spies."

"You run up against some very sophisticated targets," Thysse said in a brief interview. "It's a different kind of thrill compared to chasing bank robbers," he added.

A Minnesota native, Thysse was also assistant special agent in the Memphis Division's national security branch in 2005. He joined the FBI in 1989. [Stein/WashingtonPost/6January2011]

Harper Eyes Parliamentary Committee to Vet Top-Secret Intelligence. Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is considering creating a multi-partisan parliamentary committee to vet the top-secret intelligence gathered by Canada's national security agencies.

Several of Canada's close allies - including Britain and the United States - have established committees of lawmakers to keep tabs on the operations of their spy agencies.

When asked Friday whether he would consider creating a parliamentary intelligence committee, Harper noted that Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff and NDP leader Jack Layton have been sworn in as members of the Queen's Privy Council, a process that allows them to receive sensitive national security intelligence under an oath of secrecy.

But the prime minister said the government is looking at ways to broaden Parliament's involvement.

"I know that has been under consideration for some time. I don't think we've yet landed on a particular model that we think would be ideal," Harper told reporters at a news conference in Welland, Ont.

"But as you know, I have sworn the leaders of the opposition, other than Mr. Duceppe, to the Privy Council. So they are in a position to receive confidential security briefings. But we are looking at broader ways to involve Parliament."

Liberal and New Democrat MPs cautiously welcomed the overture, saying such a committee would improve oversight of the country's national-security agencies, in particular, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service.

"We've certainly been pushing for a security and intelligence oversight committee for some time. Most other democracies have such a committee to ensure that Parliament can look behind the curtain," said Liberal public safety critic Mark Holland.

New Democrat MP Jack Harris said his party has also been calling for enhanced parliamentary oversight of CSIS, as well as the RCMP and the Canadian Forces.

In November 2005, then-Liberal public safety minister Anne McLellan introduced legislation that would have created a national security committee composed of three senators and six MPs, including representatives from the opposition.

But the bill died when the government fell later that month.

National security expert Wesley Wark said McLellan's proposal was closely modelled on the British Intelligence and Security Committee, made up of nine members from both houses of Parliament. The panel's responsibilities include oversight of both MI5 and MI6, Britain's domestic and foreign intelligence services.

Among other things, the committee conducted a review of how intelligence was handled prior to the July 7, 2005 subway bombings in London.

In the United States, powerful intelligence committees in both houses of Congress oversee the Central Intelligence Agency.

The establishment of a parliamentary intelligence committee in Canada would be a "terrific thing," said Wark, a professor at the University of Ottawa's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs.

"It's a missing piece in the accountability puzzle. It's a missing piece in terms of how Canadians come to understand what is going on in this world," he said. "In general, it would just give an indication that the Canadian government and Parliament are seized by the seriousness of security and intelligence matters."

One thing the Conservatives likely will have to consider is the optics of offering a seat on the panel to the Bloc Quebecois. A spokesman for Duceppe didn't immediately reply to a request for comment.

The Prime Minister's Office didn't immediately respond to a request for more information. [Mayada/VancouverSun/7January2011] 

Ex-KGB Agent Sues MI5 Over "Privacy Breach." A former senior KGB agent is suing MI5 over invasion of his privacy, alleging his family members were victims of a campaign of harassment and unlawful surveillance.

Judges are now investigating claims made by Boris Karpichkov that his east London home was broken into and his telephone calls and post unlawfully intercepted.

Mr. Karpichkov, 51, worked as a spy for the KGB and its successor, the Russian FSB, in Latvia, where he rose to the rank of major. In 1995 he swapped sides and started passing on information to the newly independent Latvian government and its Western allies. But after Russia discovered he was a double agent he fled to live in the UK in 1998.

He claims that after initially working with MI5 and Special Branch his relationship with the UK intelligence community broke down. His refusal to co-operate any further with MI5 and Special Branch officers led to threats and blackmail over his legal status in the UK, he alleges in documents lodged with the Investigatory Powers Tribunal (IPT), which investigates complaints about the security and intelligence services, MI5 and MI6.

"They wanted to know if I still had some reliable unexposed secret informants in Latvia and Russia who could be 'reactivated'," Mr. Karpichkov said.

He claims MI5 approached him in order to set him up as an agent in Spain where he was to penetrate organized crime with links to the UK. He said he was also asked to help in tracing funds from tycoon Robert Maxwell's collapsed media empire. Mr. Karpichkov further alleges he was asked to provide detailed information about Russian mafia infiltration of Western businesses.

But when the security services refused to offer him any protection for his wife and two sons living in the UK the relationship broke down, he said. Central to his claim is the allegation that MI5 tried to block his application for asylum in the UK after he moved to London 12 years ago. "They described very clearly that MI5 can easily influence the Home Office's decision regarding my application for asylum and make my life miserable," he wrote.

As part of his complaint to the IPT he argues that the actions of the security service have breached his human right to privacy under article 8, which provides general protection for a person's private and family life, home, and correspondence from arbitrary interference by the state. He alleges that his home in Leyton was broken into and valuable documents removed.

He said he was forced to flee the UK to live in New Zealand for a year in 2006 after his life was threatened by Russian security services who were concerned about information he had disclosed.

After taking eight months to investigate Mr. Karpichkov's claims, the IPT has asked him to shorten his claim so that it can "be better understood".

The Tribunal secretary wrote: "I look forward to your reply as soon as possible so that the investigation into your complaint and Human Rights Act claim can proceed without delay." [Verkaik/Independent/6January2011] 

FBI: Evidence Mistakenly Returned to Alleged Spy's Woodinville Home. The night of his arrest, potentially key evidence was mistakenly returned to the Woodinville home of the man federal prosecutors claim was in "essence" a spy for the Chinese government, according to unsealed court documents.

At the same time, other FBI statements also unsealed Wednesday show that agents raided the Redmond home of a man - as yet uncharged - suspected of helping in the alleged smuggling scheme.

Now charged with attempting to smuggle sensitive military equipment to China, 46-year-old Lian Yang was arrested Dec. 3 during a meeting with undercover FBI agents.

The arrest followed a nine-month investigation that saw an informant offer to help Yang obtain satellite parts barred from export, federal prosecutors claim in charging documents filed in U.S. District Court at Seattle. The day of his arrest, prosecutors contend Yang was prepared to pay $20,000 for five components that he intended to personally smuggle to China.

Shortly after Yang was arrested, agents served a search warrant on his home. There, they seized electronics and documents allegedly related to the purported smuggling attempt.

According to an FBI agent's statement unsealed Wednesday, agents arresting Yang also took custody of his personal effects - an iPhone, a shoulder bag and several notes. The agent - a member of a Seattle-based counter-intelligence squad - intended to examine those items after booking Yang into federal detention.

Instead, Yang's possessions were returned to his car, which was then driven to his home, the agent told the court. Yang's wife was given the key.

"I intended to maintain the iPhone as evidence in this case, and to conduct a more thorough search of the phone pursuant to the consent Yang provided," the agent said in court documents. "In addition, I intended either to search the contents of Yang's shoulder bag (and) review the contents of the small documents that were seized from Yang's pockets.

"It was an inadvertent oversight that these items were placed in the trunk of the 1991 Toyota Camry and returned prior to these searches taking place."

During a search of the car conducted three days after Yang's arrest, agents recovered documents, an iPhone and an external hard drive, according to court documents.

Also detailed in the recently unsealed search warrant affidavits was a raid on a Redmond home belonging to a man suspected of assisting Yang.

Writing the court, investigators claimed $60,000 was wired from accounts belonging to a corporation based at the alleged helper's home as part of the scheme. During the search, which occurred the same day as Yang's arrest, agents seized various electronic storage devices and documents.

What role the man is suspected of having remains unclear, though additional details about Yang and the prosecution have made their way into the court record. Yang's attorneys have fought for his release from federal detention.

Prosecutors contend Yang had arranged a meeting with undercover FBI agents on Dec. 3 at which he planned to pay $20,000 for five "sensitive military" parts he planned to send to China.

Charging him with conspiring to violate federal arms control laws, prosecutors claim Yang was attempting to pay $620,000 to acquire 300 satellite components. Sales of such items requires State Department approval.

"Boiled down to its essence, the defendant's offense amounted to a form of espionage on behalf of the People's Republic of China to acquire the United States' sensitive military technology," Assistant U.S. Attorney Todd Greenberg told the court, expounding on allegations.

"There is also no doubt that Yang was aware of the nefarious purpose to which his contacts in China intended to put the parts he was attempting to acquire," Greenberg continued.

Greenberg went on to contend the components have no non-military purpose.

Yang allegedly told an informant the parts were meant for the China Space Technology Co.'s spacecraft program. On another occasion, federal investigators contend Yang said some of the parts would be used in the design of "China's new generation of passenger jet."

A Seattle FBI special agent assigned to counterintelligence noted that Yang later said he didn't know how the high-tech components would be used.

"I don't know where it goes exactly," Yang is alleged to have said. "Maybe I know something totally different. At the end, it's used in a commercial airline. That's what they say, anyway."

Writing the court, Yang's attorney described him as the son of a Chinese dissident who made a life for himself in the United States during his 22 years in the country. A former Microsoft employee and Portland State University alum, Yang became a citizen in 1999.

Defense attorney John Henry Browne also assailed the allegations offered by prosecutors and asserted his client may have been entrapped by the FBI informant.

"The evidence is underwhelming - at best - with potentially serious overtones of entrapment," Browne told the court.

Yang remains jailed at the Federal Detention Center in SeaTac. Federal prosecutors have until March to return an indictment. [Pulkkinen/SeattlePI/6January2011]

Navy Intel Chief: Information Dominance Must Balance Firepower. "Information as warfare" requires operational commanders to employ intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance to dominate the information realm even as they direct combat actions, the Navy's senior intelligence officer said, Jan. 5.

Vice Adm. David J. "Jack" Dorsett, the director of naval intelligence and deputy chief of naval operations for information dominance, spoke to defense writers about what he called a shift from an Industrial Age military force to an Information Age force.

"We're great at strike warfare - dropping bombs. It's now time for the Navy, and frankly the U.S. joint forces, to step up and start dealing with information in a much more sophisticated manner than they have in the past," Dorsett said.

Adm. Gary Roughead, chief of naval operations, announced in October 2009 the Navy was combining its intelligence directorate, communications networks and related information technology capabilities into the information dominance organization.

Dorsett said as leader of that organization he serves as the Navy's "banker" for information capabilities.

"I do resources, I do requirements, I do policies," he said. "Tenth Fleet is the operational commander for our cyber forces and our network forces, and our Navy's information operational capabilities.

"Tenth Fleet is a three-star operational commander," he continued. "The [chief of naval operations] this past year also created Navy Cyber Command, a two-star commander, and he's responsible for manning, training and equipping the fleet."

In just over a year since the Navy reorganized its intelligence and technology communities, Dorsett said, the service has made great progress in organizing its work force and developing sensors and networks, but hasn't accomplished as much in analyzing collected intelligence.

"Managing data, making sense of the information, is one of our largest challenges," Dorsett said. "Part of the job dealing with information dominance is looking at information from one end to the other: from sensors to networks to transport to exploitation dissemination.

"One area this past year we haven't made as much progress on was on processing, exploitation and dissemination," he continued. "It's high on our list for this upcoming year."

Within the Defense Department, the Navy is primarily partnering with the Air Force in "tackling imagery exploitation first, as something ... easier to get our hands around," Dorsett said.

"But we're also partnering with agencies like the National Security Agency on their cloud computing initiatives, their cyber pilot initiatives, and ... how you manage information, how do you get it to flow from one point to another," he added.

Effectively processing intelligence imagery - managing data - requires combining automated tools with skilled human analysis, Dorsett said.

"An awful lot can be automated," he said. "You don't need to look at every single piece of electro-optical imagery that comes in, necessarily. You need tools to alert you to the key issues that you can then apply an analyst to."

But if those analysts aren't well-trained and experienced in looking at data from signals intelligence to imagery to open-source data, Dorsett said, some of the available information will be lost.

"We look at things holistically," he said. "If you just look at the data and technology and tools and you forget to apply energy to training your people, you won't get to the right solution set."

A major emphasis over the past year, he said, has been to increase the number of sensors gathering imagery in the "battle space."

"But I think more needs to be applied to this issue of processing, exploitation and dissemination, especially as all of the services bring more sensors to bear in our future capabilities," Dorsett said. "That's part of our game plan."

In replacing legacy weapons systems with new capabilities, he said, a one-for-one substitution isn't the most effective approach.

The Navy is taking a "family of systems" approach to balance information and firepower requirements, he said, noting the approach includes incorporating signals intelligence capability on surface ships.

"One of the principles for information dominance is, every platform needs to be a sensor and every sensor needs to be networked," Dorsett said.

While increasing the intelligence-gathering capability of weapons systems is critical, he said, the military also needs to maintain its other combat capabilities.

The Navy's P-8 Poseidon aircraft is an example, he said. The aircraft, now in development as an anti-submarine and shipping interdiction platform, is "a primary warfighting tool for the Navy," Dorsett said.

"We don't want to optimize it for [signals intelligence] at the expense of [asymmetric warfare]," he said. "We'll deal with spiral approaches to a variety of our systems and platforms and plug-and-play in the years ahead, so I wouldn't preclude the P-8 from having a [signals intelligence] or [multi intelligence] payload, but at this point we're going to focus on primarily on [asymmetric warfare]."

Historically, the U.S. military has emphasized combat power over intelligence activities, Dorsett said.

"I think you see, with the Department of Defense and the creation of [U.S.] Cyber Command, the recognition by the secretary of defense and the seniors within the department that the nonkinetic, the cyber, the information side of the house is really critical," he said. "You need a combatant commander that is dealing in that arena as his primary mission area."

Commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan have seen the value of integrating intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities with operations over the last five years, he said.

"Ops-intel integration was the 2000-2010 era improvement we made in joint war-fighting," Dorsett said. "2010-2020, it needs to be this elevation of non-kinetic information capabilities."

The Navy has integrated intelligence and surveillance capabilities, electronic warfare, cyber, networks, oceanography and meteorology - knowledge of the environment - to break down barriers in warfighting, Dorsett said.

"Out of balance? We have been," he said. "I think ... DOD is taking a variety of steps to make improvements in this non-kinetic, information side of the house." [Dvidshub/6January2011] 

Former CIA Officer Charged with Disclosing Defense Information. A federal judge in St. Louis ordered a former CIA officer held in custody as a flight risk Thursday after his arrest on charges that he disclosed secret defense information, a CNN affiliate producer who was in the courtroom said.

Jeffrey Alexander Sterling, 43, of O'Fallon, Missouri, is charged in a 10-count indictment with unauthorized retention and disclosure of classified information, mail fraud and obstruction of justice, the Justice Department said.

Sterling, wearing jeans, a long-sleeved green shirt and shackles on his legs, told U.S. Magistrate Judge Terry Adelman he understood the charges against him, according to KMOV reporter Steve Perron. Sterling was represented in court by St. Louis attorney Steve Welby.

Edward MacMahon, who represents Sterling in Virginia, where the case originated, told CNN that Sterling will eventually be brought back to U.S. District Court in Alexandria for trial.

"He's always maintained his innocence, and I'm sure he will when he gets to court," the attorney said.

Sterling's next court date is a detention hearing on Monday.

Sterling worked at the CIA from May 1993 to January 2002, the Justice Department said. One of his assignments was working on a top-secret operational program related to the weapons capabilities of certain countries. His role in that program included working with "a human asset," the department said.

He was fired from his job in 2002, it said, adding that he had filed discrimination complaints against the CIA before and after he left.

The indictment alleges Sterling stole classified information and orally disclosed the contents to a newspaper reporter who was writing a book.

The author of the book is not named in the indictment, but the case appears to match up with newspaper accounts about New York Times reporter James Risen, who was subpoenaed to testify about his confidential sources for his book "State of War: The Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration."

Joel Kurtzberg, a lawyer representing Risen, would not comment on whether Sterling was one of the reporter's confidential sources.

"(Risen) doesn't comment on any confidential sources," Kurtzberg said, adding that he has not provided any testimony or documents or cooperated in any other way with the government investigation about his sources.

In a prepared statement, Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer said, "through his alleged actions, Sterling placed at risk our national security and the life of an individual working on a classified mission."

The CIA would not comment specifically on the case, but spokesman George Little said, "Separate and apart from any specific instance, including this matter involving a former agency officer who left the CIA years ago, we take very seriously the unauthorized disclosure of classified information." [Bensen/CNN/6January2011] 

Hero to Some, Terrorist to Others, Posada Gets Day in Court. Luis Posada Carriles has been accused of killing 73 people by bombing a Cuban airliner, plotting to kill Fidel Castro by blowing up a jam-packed auditorium in Panama and masterminding a string of blasts in Havana that killed one tourist.

But when the Miami exile goes on trial Monday in a federal court in Texas, he will be facing only 11 counts of lying under oath and related offenses - mostly because he denied to U.S. immigration officials any role in the Havana blasts.

The Cuban and Venezuelan governments say the lowly charges show that Washington is coddling a world-class terrorist. Others say the charges of perjury, rather than terrorism or murder, are akin to trying Al Capone for tax evasion: maybe lowly, but effective.

"They wisely chose a perjury case,'' said Thomas Scott, a former federal judge and U.S. attorney in Miami. "On that issue, they've got a reasonable shot of conviction.''

The case has been five years in the making, since the CIA-trained explosives expert and inveterate hatcher of anti-Castro plots turned up in Miami in 2005. If convicted, Posada, who is 82 years old, could get from five to eight years in prison.

Many of the 560 filings in the case so far remain sealed - not available to the public - including items related to Posada's CIA history and his taped interview with author Ann Louise Bardach. Justice Department attorneys asked for the seals.

But it's clear that Bardach, who was subpoenaed by prosecutors, will be a critical witness. Her role: To authenticate her recordings of a 1998 interview with Posada in which he allegedly confessed to orchestrating the Havana blasts.

A contract writer for The New York Times, Bardach fought the government subpoenas in an attempt to avoid turning over the tapes and testifying about them in court. "It's either testify or go to jail,'' she told The Miami Herald last week.

Bardach and Times staff writer Larry Rohter wrote a series of stories in 1998 about militant Cuban exiles, including one reporting that Posada had confessed in the taped interview to the bombings that hit Havana tourist spots in 1997, killing an Italian man.

"We didn't want to hurt anybody,'' the story quoted Posada as saying. "We just wanted to make a big scandal so that the tourists don't come anymore.''

During interviews with U.S. immigration officials in 2005, however, Posada denied he had confessed to Bardach and claimed that he had misheard some of her questions and misspoke in some of his answers because his English was not fluent.

"I am saying that is not true,'' Posada said in Spanish when he gave sworn testimony in El Paso during one of several hearings related to his request for asylum and efforts to fight a deportation order against him.

Prosecutors don't have to prove he was responsible for the Havana blasts. They need only show that there was a crime, that Posada played some part in it - and prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that he lied when he denied any role in the bombings.

Toward that end, prosecutors plan to present 3,500 pages of Cuban and Guatemalan government reports on the Havana bombings and call Cuban police officers as witnesses. Also expected to testify is a Cuban American who claims Posada handled explosives for the Havana blasts in an office they shared in Guatemala City.

In addition, FBI agents have records showing about $19,000 in wire transfers from Cuban exiles in New Jersey to Posada in El Salvador and Guatemala between October 1996 and January 1998. The FBI alleges the money was used to finance the bombings.

In a victory for the defense, U.S. District Judge Kathleen Cardone denied a prosecution request for permission to travel to Havana to depose two Salvadoran men, jailed in Cuba, who claim that Posada paid them to set off the bombs.

But the bulk of the evidence would seem to pose a daunting challenge for his defense. Nonetheless, Posada's Miami attorney, Arturo V. Hernandez, remained upbeat last week.

"My client is innocent of every single count of this indictment,'' Hernandez said. "The tapes, together with the other evidence in the case, are going to show that.''

Hernandez has made it clear he will attack Bardach's New York Times reports, the U.S. government transcriptions of Posada's comments to Bardach and the immigration officials, and the evidence obtained by prosecutors from the Cuban government.

In a motion last month, he alleged that Cuba regularly lies to suit its needs and noted that officials of a U.N. agency that investigated the killing of four Brothers to the Rescue members in 1996 concluded Havana had doctored some of the evidence.

Whatever the outcome of the trial, it may well be the final chapter in the life of Posada. who will be 83 next month and is reported to be in ill health.

Cuba and Venezuela accused him in the 1976 bombing of a Cubana de Aviacion plane in which 73 people died. A Venezuelan court acquitted him, but a new trial was ordered and in 1985 he escaped from prison and turned up in El Salvador, where he played a role in supplying the CIA-backed Nicaraguan guerrillas known as "contras.''

In 2000 he was arrested in Panama in connection with a plot to kill Castro with a bomb during a speech at a Panama City university. Convicted on a lesser charge and sentenced to eight years, he was pardoned after four and returned to El Salvador.

He has denied both the Cubana de Aviacion and Panama allegations.

Posada turned up in Miami in 2005 and held a very public news conference. Angry immigration authorities arrested him and took him to El Paso, where he was questioned under oath about the Havana blasts and how he had entered the United States.

He claimed he had crossed Mexico's land border with Texas and then traveled by bus to Miami. Prosecutors alleged that Cuban exiles transported him by boat from Mexico to South Florida, and charged him in 2007 with lying about how he entered the country.

Cardone threw out the indictment, condemning authorities for using Posada's immigration proceedings as a "pretext for a criminal investigation'' to gather alleged terrorist evidence on him.

Her ruling was overturned on appeal, and in 2009 prosecutors again charged Posada with lying about his entry into the country as well as the Havana bombings.

Hernandez said he expects the trial to last from four to eight weeks, depending on the number of witnesses to be presented. Security will be tight because both critics and supporters of Posada plan to stage demonstrations near the courthouse.

On Sunday, former U.S. Attorney Ramsey Clark and Jose Pertierra, a U.S. lawyer who represents the Venezuelan government, will stage a "people's tribunal'' in El Paso to condemn Posada and demand his extradition to Venezuela or Cuba. [Weaver/MiamiHerald/8January2011] 

Ghailani Gives Reason for Seeking Leniency. Al-Qaida embassy bombing conspirator Ahmed Ghailani is seeking leniency at his Jan. 25 sentencing because he was mistreated by the CIA - and because he provided "substantial assistance" to anti-terror efforts by spilling information after he was mistreated.

The defense strategy, contained in a sealed sentencing memorandum, was revealed in court papers filed by Manhattan federal prosecutors that urge U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan to reject arguments comparing Ghailani to a cooperating witness or informant, and to sentence him to life in prison.

"The defendant was a central participant in an al-Qaida terror cell that killed hundreds of people... spread fear and terror and by virtue of its monumental scale and its indiscriminate mass murder, evinced extraordinary brutality, hatred and evil - well beyond the baseline of first-degree murder," prosecutors wrote.

Ghailani, accused in the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa that took 224 lives, was convicted in November on one count of conspiring to destroy U.S. buildings, but acquitted on 284 counts, including all charges that he acted with an intent to kill. He has asked the judge to dismiss the conviction as inconsistent with the acquittals.

Prosecutors conceded at trial that Ghailani was subjected to abusive interrogation after his capture. Held first at CIA black sites and later at Guant�namo, he was the first ex-detainee to be tried in a civilian court. [Riley/NewsDay/8January2011] 

American Woman Feared Held in Iran Found Safe. The State Department says an American woman who was the focus of unconfirmed media reports that she had been arrested in Iran for espionage while entering from Armenia is safe and not in Iranian custody.

"We have located the U.S. citizen who appears to have been the subject of the reports and confirmed that the individual is safe," State Department spokesman Mark Toner said late Saturday. "She is not in Iran."

He could not provide further details.

A U.S. official told ABC News that the woman is in Istanbul, Turkey, and that American consular officials are in touch with her.

On Thursday, reports in some state-run Iranian media outlets said an American woman had been arrested by customs officials for hiding "spying technology or a microphone" in her teeth while trying to enter northwestern Iran from neighboring Armenia.

On Friday, State Spokesman P.J. Crowley cast doubt on the reports of the woman's arrest as he said that neither Armenia nor Iran had a record of an American woman entering Iran through a checkpoint along their borders.

"We have no information to corroborate this alleged incident," Crowley said.

He said that "in addition to checking our own records, we have contacted Armenian authorities and through our Swiss protecting power the Iranian government concerning these reports. Neither Iran nor Armenia reports having any record of a U.S. citizen crossing or attempting to cross the Iran-Armenia border as indicated in media accounts."

Attempts by American officials to confirm the woman's citizenship and identity proved difficult as contradictory information began to appear in other Iranian media outlets that denied the initial reports and said no American had been detained. The contradictions continued on Saturday as new media reports from a senior Iranian police official provided even more contradictory details on the woman's alleged arrest and identity.

Gen. Ahmad Geravand told the ISNA news agency that the woman was 34-year-old Hal Fayalan and that she had been arrested at a border crossing with Azerbaijan. He said she "was on a mission for the Americans to film the country's borders."

However, the initial reports on Thursday identified the woman as 55-year-old Hal Talaian and said she had been arrested as she entered from Armenia.

U.S. officials said Friday they could not find a passport record or any other files for a woman with the reported name or any variation of it. [Martinez/ABC/10January2011] 

Egyptian to Stand Trial for Israel Spying. An Egyptian businessman charged with spying for Israel's Mossad and recruiting agents in telecoms firms will stand trial on Jan. 15, the Cairo Court of Appeal said on Saturday.

Tarek Abdel Rezek Hussein, 37, owner of an import-export firm, was arrested in August on charges of providing Israel with information about Egyptians in telecoms companies who could be recruited to spy in Egypt, Syria and Lebanon.

Hussein, accused of accepting $37,000 for spying, as well as two Israelis who were charged in absentia will be tried at the Supreme State Security Emergency Court. Israel, at peace with Egypt since 1979, has denied involvement in the affair.

"The three defendants are accused of harming Egypt's national interests by providing information to Israel about officials working in the field of communication who could potentially cooperate with the Mossad," a judicial source said, referring to the Israeli foreign intelligence service.Egypt and Israel have maintained diplomatic and limited trade ties but their peace has been relatively "cold". Continued Israeli occupation of land Palestinians seek for a state is a key factor in popular Egyptian resentment of the Jewish state.

Egyptian security sources said Hussein confessed in December to spying for Israel, detailing many meetings with Mossad agents in India, China and Thailand among other countries.

Lebanon has witnessed a series of arrests for spying in the past two years, some involving telecom sector employees over similar accusations of espionage on behalf of Israel.

Egyptian authorities have not explicitly said if the Lebanese arrests were linked to Egypt's. But a second charge accused Hussein of planning to provide information to Israel on potential Syrian and Lebanese operatives.

Other security sources said Hussein collaborated with a Syrian Mossad spy to provide Israel with information on alleged Syrian nuclear activity in 2007.

In 2007, Egypt convicted a 31-year-old Egyptian-Canadian dual national of spying for Israel. Three Israelis were charged in absentia. Israel dismissed the case as a fabrication.

In 1996, Egypt sentenced Azzam Azzam, an Israeli Arab textile worker, to 15 years in jail for spying for Israel. Egypt said Azzam had passed messages in women's underwear using invisible ink. Both Azzam and Israel denied the charges. [Awad/Reuters/10January2011] 

Gates Moves to Overhaul, Boost Military Intelligence. In a little-noticed move, the plan by Defense Secretary Robert Gates to reorganize the Pentagon's budget includes an overhaul of military intelligence programs as well as increased spending on intelligence and surveillance capabilities.

While the plan outlined by Gates on Thursday would cut $78 billion from the Pentagon's budget over the next five years, it also includes significant actions affecting military intelligence operations and spending.

For example, Gates said he wants to consolidate intelligence organizations that are "excess and duplicative" while buying more platforms like the Air Force Reaper unmanned aerial vehicle and the Army MC-12 reconnaissance aircraft.

"The demand from ground commanders for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance assets continues to exceed the military's supply," Gates said. "In response, the military, with the Army, will buy more MC-12 reconnaissance aircraft, accelerate procurement of the service's most advanced Gray Eagle UAVs, and begin development of a new vertical unmanned air system to support the Army in the future."

Reading into Gates's announcement, defense industry officials and analysts expect military intelligence programs to reap increased investments in the coming years.

"We believe a priority investment area not at risk to significant cuts is future procurements of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) systems," financial advisory firm Lazard Capital Markets wrote on Friday in assessing Gates's plan.

"In our opinion, investor sentiment in the space has improved; however, there remain risks of further budget pressures if Congress rejects Gates' proposals and takes a sword to the defense budget rather than a scalpel," the firm added.

Under Gates's plan, some military intelligence organizations will be downsized, while redundant programs will be consolidated into two task forces under the Defense Intelligence Agency.

"Based on this review, I have approved a number of changes," Gates said, adding that he consulted with Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. "They include downsizing the new intelligence organizations that have grown up around a number of the combatant commands in recent years, most of which are not directly engaged in the post-9/11 military conflicts."

Gates said the Pentagon "will transition to an arrangement" under which DIA can surge intelligence support to combatant commands as needed. Clapper's office referred additional questions to DIA, which did not respond for this story.

Laying out new areas of investment, Gates said his plan would "move essential intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance programs from the temporary war budget to the permanent base budget."

For example, he said, "advanced unmanned strike and reconnaissance capabilities must become an integrated part of the Air Force's regular institutional force structure."

"The Air Force will increase procurement of the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle to assure access to space for both military and other government agencies while sustaining our industrial base," he added.

Gates also said the Navy plans to accelerate developing a new generation of airborne surveillance, jamming, and fighter aircraft. "They will develop a new generation of seaborne unmanned strike-and-surveillance aircraft," he added.

On a related front, Gates said he also plans to reform how DoD uses information technology, which now costs about $37 billion a year.

"At this time, all of our bases and headquarters have their own separate IT infrastructure and processes, which drive up costs and create cyber-vulnerabilities," he said. "The department is planning to consolidate hundreds of data centers and move to a more secure enterprise system, which we estimate could save more than a billion dollars a year." [Strohm/GovExec/9January2011]

Ex-Taiwanese Intelligence Officers Visit China. Nineteen retired Taiwanese intelligence officials last month visited late General Tai Li's hometown in Jiangshan City, Zhejiang Province, China, reports said yesterday.

The Chinese-language China Times reported that former National Security Bureau chief accountant Lieutenant General Hsu Ping-chiang and former Military Intelligence Bureau (MIB) official Major General Huang Chi-mei led 17 retired MIB officials on a visit to Tai's hometown - the first time former Taiwanese intelligence officials paid a formal visit to China.

Tai is known as the father of the Chinese Nationalist Party's (KMT) infamous intelligence apparatus during the Chiang Kai-shek presidency.

For many years, Hsu handled the nation's spending on secret diplomatic and national security funds. He was charged in 2003 with embezzling money from a secret diplomatic fund, but was cleared by the Taipei District Court in 2004.

Huang spent many years handling intelligence on China at the MIB, the newspaper said.

The group left for Zhejiang on Tuesday, the paper said, adding that officials from the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) Jiangshan City branch and officials of the city's United Front Work Department hosted the group during the five-day trip.

The group visited Tai's old residence and the Jiangshan City Museum, which has displays on Tai relics, the report said.

The Taiwanese delegation and officials from Jiangshan City's Taiwan Affairs Office also discussed restoration plans for Tai's tomb in Nanjing and building a new tomb for Tai, it said.

The paper quoted Huang as saying the visit was at the invitation of the CCP. The group entered China and left the country together and no one was harassed during the trip, Huang said.

Responding to the visit, Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Tsai Huang-liang said former intelligence officials should not be allowed to visit China because sensitive information can easily be leaked on such occasions.

Although Chinese intelligence officers did not meet members of the delegation, the visit was -sensitive because "the spy war never ends," the China Times said, adding that intelligence gathering against Taiwan was now conducted through academic exchanges and commercial activities.

"China's invitation could be bait to launch counter-intelligence," the paper said.

Visits by government officials and military officers have become more frequent since President Ma Ying-jeou came into office. Closer contacts between retired Taiwanese military officers and Chinese authorities have sparked concerns in Washington, reports have said, with US officials especially concerned that such contacts could endanger longstanding military cooperation projects with Taiwan. [Chang/TaipeiTimes/20January2011] 


After 65 Years in the Shadows, the Indian Heroine of Churchill's Elite SOE Spy Network to be Recognized with a Statue in London. For more than 60 years, the heroism of Noor Inayat Khan, one of Winston Churchill's elite Special Operations Executive secret agents, has remained largely forgotten.

She was the first female radio operator sent into Nazi-occupied France, where her bravery has long been recognized, and for three months she single-handedly ran a cell of spies across Paris until she was betrayed and captured.

For ten months she was tortured by the Gestapo desperate for any information about SOE operations, but she stood firm and was eventually executed at Dachau concentration camp on September 13, 1944, aged just 30.

Khan was posthumously awarded the George Cross in 1949 and the French Croix de Guerre, but her courage has since been allowed to fade into history in Britain... until now.

And, mainly due to the efforts of her biographer Shrabani Basu, her bravery is finally to be permanently recognized in England with a bronze bust in central London, close to the Bloomsbury house where she lived as a child.

A campaign to raise �100,000 for what will be the first memorial in Britain to either a Muslim or an Asian woman has won the backing of 34 MPs and prominent British Asians.

Khan was born on New Year's Day 1914 in Moscow to an Indian father and an American mother. She was a direct descendant of Tipu Sultan, the renowned 18th century Muslim 'Tiger of Mysore' who refused to submit to British rule and died in battle.

Her father was an Indian Muslim preacher who moved his family first to London and then to Paris, where Khan was educated and later worked writing children's' stories.

Despite carrying a passport of an imperial subject, Khan had no loyalty to Britain. But she and her brother Vilayat despised the greater evil of Nazi Germany and fled to England after the fall of France.

In November 1940 she joined the Women's Auxiliary Air Force, and two years later her quiet dedication and training in radio transmitting attracted the attention of the SOE.

Despite doubts about her suitability, she was flown to France in June 1943 to become the radio operator for the 'Prosper' resistance network in Paris, using the codename 'Madeleine' and with the famous instruction to 'set Europe ablaze'.

Many members of the network were arrested shortly afterwards but she chose to remain in France and, frequently changing her appearance and alias, she spent the summer moving from place to place, trying to relay messages back to London.

She was eventually betrayed by a Frenchwoman, supposedly the jealous girlfriend of a comrade, and arrested by the Gestapo who discovered that she had unwisely kept copies of all her secret signals. The Germans were able to use her radio to trick London into sending new agents - straight into the hands of the waiting Gestapo.

In November 1943, she was sent to Pforzheim prison in Germany where she was kept in chains and in solitary confinement. Despite repeated torture, she refused to reveal any information and in September 1944, Khan and three other female SOE agents were transferred to Dachau where they were shot.

Shrabani Basu, who has spent eight years researching official archives and family records, told the Independent newspaper: 'I feel it is very important that what she did should not be allowed to fade from memory, particularly living in the times that we do.

'Here was a young Muslim woman who gave her life for this country and for the fight against those who wanted to destroy the Jewish race. She was an icon for the bond that exists between Britain and India but also between people who fought for what they believed to be right.'

His efforts to rekindle interest in her story includes the making of a �10 million biopic by a British production company.

Around �25,000 of the cost required for the bust has been raised, and permission has been granted to site the sculpture on land owned by the University of London in Gordon Square. The cause has won the support of human rights campaigner Shami Chakrabarti and film director Gurinder Chadha. [DailyMail/3January2011] 

The People Even James Bond Avoids. There are two foreign intelligence services in today's Russia: SVR and GRU. The first one is the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service. It is the former First Chief Directorate of the Soviet era KGB, which has managed intelligence for decades. Its activities are well known throughout the world.

The second one is the GRU, Russian military intelligence. It is a part of the Defense Ministry. Its full name is much longer (The Chief Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff of the Russian Army). GRU has retained its Soviet era name, and just about everything else. GRU is seen as a living relic of the Soviet times. That is why GRU is so much more secretive than the "Westernized" SVR. GRU officers are considered more patriotic (and old school) than those of the KGB/SVR. During the Cold War, there were fewer GRU defectors, still a point of pride in the GRU. GRU prefers to stay in the shadows. Western writers have not written many books about SRU, compared to the KGB. This is largely because GRU keeps its secrets better, and, in the West, is considered an obscure part of Russian intelligence.

Both GRU (Russian Military Intelligence) and SVR (Russian Foreign Intelligence Service) perform the same functions: Political Intelligence, Scientific and Technical Intelligence (industrial espionage) and Illegal Intelligence. Because of this, the two agencies have a very real rivalry going.

But there was, and remains, one area where only the SVR (and its predecessor, the KGB) participates; running counter-intelligence abroad. This was long a KGB monopoly because it was the KGB's job to make sure the armed forces remained loyal, and GRU was, and is, very much a part of the armed forces.

Thus when the GRU officers are working abroad, they are monitored by Directorate "K" (counter-intelligence) of the SVR. Those who serve inside Russia are watched by the Directorate of Military Counter-Intelligence (The Third Directorate) of the FSB (Federal Security Service, inheritor to the KGB). Interestingly, in the Soviet period, it was also called the Third Directorate. It is not a coincidence but a continuation of the Soviet tradition. The Third Directorate of the FSB is still assigned to monitor Defense Ministry, of which the GRU is a part. The head of GRU does not even report directly to the Russian President. GRU reports have to go through the Head of the General Staff and the Defense Minister before reaching the top man. Thus GRU is very much number two in the Russian foreign intelligence business. As Number 2, they tend to try harder, and consider themselves more elite than those wimps over at SVR.

On the other hand, there also is one function monopolized by the GRU; battlefield intelligence. The battlefield intelligence is run in peacetime as well. For example, in preparation for future wars, the GRU sets up illegal weapon and ammunition dumps in the territory of many foreign countries. This is a risky operation. It usually involves groups of junior Russian diplomats secretly going into rural areas to bury rifles, machine-guns and other weapons. They have to do this discreetly and in a hurry, to avoid detection by the local counterintelligence service. It is considered a hard job. 

Western analysts regard the GRU as the most closed Russian intelligence service partly because it does not even manage its own press relations. That's because GRU is one of many components of the Defense Ministry, and is not eligible to have its own press relations staff. The FSB and SVR are higher up in the government pecking order, and entitled to their own press relations operations. Formally, GRU is nothing but one of the numerous Chief Directorates of the General Staff of the Defense Ministry. It does not even report directly to the Minister of Defense. That is why, those foreign journalists who have questions about GRU, must address them to the Press Service of Russian Defense Ministry. The questions are often handled by some press aide who knows little about intelligence work, while FSB and SVR press people are very well informed. So foreign journalists tend to seek out the SVR press department when seeking information on Russian intel operations.

During the Second World War, GRU worked in close contact with the NKVD, the predecessor of the KGB. For example, in March, 1941, both intelligence services jointly carried out a successful operation aimed at overthrowing the pro-German government of Yugoslavia. During the entire war, GRU and NKVD were managing a joint network of foreign agents in Europe. The current system of two separate intelligence services, competing with each other, only came about in the 1950s, after Stalin's death. It was done by the Central Committee of the Communist Party in order to secure itself from the coup inspired by either intelligence service. Thus the GRU not only competes with the SVR, it is supposed to keep an eye on the SVR, for signs of disloyalty.

In Soviet times, although the GRU was monitored by the KGB, both organizations reported to the Central Committee of the Communist Party. In case of emergency, the Central Committee could control the KGB using the GRU. The communists believed it best that someone guards the guards. Nowadays, GRU does not monitor the SVR anymore. GRU, the military and the rest of Russia, are all subordinate to the FSB/SVR.

The SVR has more money and resources. It's long been like that, and the GRU has developed a tradition of getting by on very little. GRU methods are considered more aggressive and crude than those of the SVR. GRU operatives tend to think they are at war even at the peacetime. Thus the SVR assigns its officers to do some job in the form of tasks, not orders. The task is not supposed to be necessarily accomplished, while the order is to be carried out by all means. The GRU prefers ordering, and expects results no matter what.

In the GRU nobody cares how their officers obtain secret information (like parts of missiles and other weapons). They may even buy it legally or semi-legally or even steal. The SVR officers are not allowed to do so. They are supposed to use foreign collaborators for it. In the GRU, you just go get it. [StrategyPage/5January2011] 


Two Tales of Military Intelligence. Over in Wired's Danger Room they recently published a humorous piece on the increasing number of US Generals that are using Twitter. There are two common reactions to this concept. One is the acceptance that the position of General is a prestigious one and not without its own political jockeying, thus the need for social media and public relations. The other is the mental image of a bespangled uniform awkwardly hammering a keyboard, tongue firmly tucked into cheek.

According to Wired's Spencer Ackerman you can decidedly go with the latter.

Is it really necessary to tweet "Thanks!!!" to everyone who fills out a survey? Ham, the next commander of all U.S. troops in Africa, had the unenviable task this year of studying troops' attitudes to the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. By all accounts, he did a thorough and professional job. But if @GenCarterHam was supposed to supplement Ham's effort, it didn't exactly take advantage of Twitter. Not only did Ham tweet a mere 42 times between March and September, only 12 of those tweets asked troops to fill out online surveys about the repeal - and only half of those actually gave his tweeps the URL to do so. None used the popular #DADT hashtag to attract nonfollowers' attention.

Okay, so the above critique of Gen. Carter Ham clearly demonstrates someone who is new to the nuanced realm of Twitter. Certainly there are worse offenses that a military leader can commit. It does bring to mind the question of why even bother to have a Twitter account? As Ackerman outlines throughout his piece these suddenly sociable Generals seem merely to be going through the motions of having a Twitter account. It's as though they're being forced to do it and awkwardly avoid revealing too much about themselves or their jobs. Well, most of them at any rate. Brigadier General Steven Spano has confidently wandered into the social network to share his special brand of organizational jargon. Emphasis on special.

The previous tweeters are stingy with their big-think. But Spano, the communications chief for the Air Force's Air Combat Command, has no shortage of way-out-there-in-the-blue tweets. His feed is actually one of my favorites, because rarely am I sure what @accsix is actually tweeting about. "Best practices in theory often result in best intentions in reality," begins Spano's Dec. 22 gem, "unique variables must drive unique practices in similar business lines." Come again? "If the value of information at rest greatly diminishes over time, shouldn't our security model be more flexible and adaptive?" If only, general! Run with that! Lead the way! I promise it'll get you more followers.

This Rumsfeldian poetry brings me to the second recently published story about failures in military communication. The AP recently reported a story about the opening and decoding of a sealed Civil War message. The sealed glass vial contained the response of the Confederate Commander in Vicksburg to Lt. General John C. Pemberton's request for reinforcements. The undelivered communication offered no solace to the beleaguered Pemberton: "Reinforcements are not on their way."

Useful information, no doubt, but obviously meaningless when left undelivered. So why did the messenger, who was not slain, fail to deliver his important message? Museum of the Confederacy collections manager Catherine M. Wright speculated for that since the message is dated the same day that Pemberton lost out to the Union that:

The Confederate messenger probably arrived to the river's edge and saw a U.S. flag flying over the city. He figured out what was going on and said, 'Well, this is pointless,' and turned back," Wright said.

I feel like there is a moral somewhere in this. [MHPBooks/4January2010] 

Covert Action Makes a Comeback. We're in an era of "covert action."

That phrase went into disrepute in the 1970s, when Congress's Church Committee exposed hare-brained CIA plots to eliminate foreign leaders, such as assassinating Fidel Castro with exploding cigars. President Ford banned assassinations, a chastened CIA cast many veteran officers into the cold, and Congress imposed new limits on covert activities. From then on the president would have to approve all operations in writing and notify senior members of Congress. There would be no more "wink-and-nod" authorizations.

Covert action made a comeback in the 1980s, as the U.S. directed billions of dollars in aid to the Afghan anti-Soviet mujahedeen - the most successful covert action in American history. Yet at the same time President Reagan's National Security Council was pursuing a crazy scheme to sell weapons to Iran and channel some of the proceeds to the Nicaraguan Contras, so as to bypass a congressional ban on aid to the guerrillas. The Iran-Contra scandal almost brought down the Reagan administration and once again tarnished the reputation of covert action.

In the 1990s, out of an abundance of caution, the Clinton administration failed to act effectively against Osama bin Laden and the growing danger of al Qaeda. The CIA and the military's Special Operations forces offered proposals for capturing or killing bin Laden and his senior lieutenants, but the risk-averse White House rejected them.

Since 9/11, however, CIA and Special Ops "operators" have been unleashed to take the battle to the jihadists across the world. Some of their actions have been controversial, particularly "extraordinary renditions" (i.e., seizures of suspects abroad) and "enhanced interrogations" at CIA "black sites" which have since closed. President Obama has been critical of aspects of the Bush-era "war on terror," but he has actually accelerated some types of covert action, including the CIA's drone strikes in Pakistan. The CIA is also running several thousand paramilitaries in Afghanistan, in its biggest war effort since Vietnam.

Now another covert-action program appears to have scored a big success. Israeli cabinet minister Moshe Yaalon, a former Israeli military chief of staff, said last week that, as a result of recent setbacks, Iran will not go nuclear until 2014 at the earliest. That's quite a change from earlier Israeli forecasts that Iran could get the bomb in 2011.

Why the extra three years? Mr. Yaalon didn't elaborate beyond the bland statement that "the Iranian nuclear program has a number of technological challenges and difficulties." But it has been widely reported that Siemens computers used to control Iranian nuclear facilities in Natanz and Bushehr were infected by a fiendishly clever virus, called Stuxnet, that is hard to detect and even harder to eradicate.

Meanwhile, there have been several assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists. In November, for example, mysterious men on motorbikes attached magnetic mines to cars being driven by Majid Shahriari and Fereydoon Abbasi, both of whom are said to have worked in the Iranian nuclear program. The former was killed, the latter wounded.

Iranian leaders have blamed these attacks on Israel and the United States. While the mullahs blame the Little Satan and the Great Satan for everything under the sun, in this case they are probably right. There has been rampant speculation that the Mossad or the CIA is behind the assassinations (my bet would be the former), and that the U.S. National Security Agency or its Israeli equivalent, Unit 8200, is behind Stuxnet.

Whoever is responsible may have scored the most notable victory yet recorded in the brief annals of cyberwarfare. It appears that Stuxnet has managed to delay the Iranian nuclear program as long as Israeli air strikes might have, while avoiding any of the obvious blowback. Hezbollah has threatened to rain thousands of missiles on Israel in the event of Israeli attacks on its Iranian sponsors, but a computer virus doesn't offer an obvious casus belli even to the most fanatical terrorists.

We shouldn't get carried away with the power of covert programs. There are still many challenges so severe - such as the Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan - that they cannot be resolved by a handful of secret agents and daring commandos. But covert action can be a valuable part of the policy maker's tool kit, provided that it is integrated into a larger plan.

In the case of Iran, the question is whether we'll make good use of the time apparently bought by successful covert action. If the Obama administration spends the next three years trying to push sanctions resolutions out of the United Nations or trying to open negotiations with Tehran, it will accomplish little. Better to ramp up another covert action program - this one designed to help the Iranian people overthrow their dictators.

The U.S. missed a prime opportunity when Iran's Green Movement was hitting its stride in the summer of 2009. Back then, the Obama administration was still too focused on cutting a deal with the mullahs to extend a helping hand to Iran's democrats. That gave the regime the time and space to stage an effective crackdown. There remains tremendous disaffection with the regime, though, and it could grow with some outside help in the form of money, printed materials, radio and TV broadcasts, tools for circumventing Internet controls, and other aids to revolution.

Of course, Tehran is on guard against what happened with the Orange Revolution in Ukraine, the Rose Revolution in Georgia, and the Cedar Revolution in Lebanon - all of which received American assistance. Toppling a regime is far more difficult than impeding a nuclear program or a terrorist plot. It may be impossible. But we must try. Otherwise we risk sacrificing the recent gains achieved by skilled and daring intelligence operatives. [Mr. Boot is a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He is completing a history of guerrilla warfare and terrorism.] [Boot/RealClearWorld/5January2011] 

Charting a Course to the Next Renaissance. "Doing more with less" is an axiom of this age of frugality. Budgets are being cut and programs slashed even at the all-mighty Pentagon. Yet this is perhaps the greatest window of opportunity America has had in two decades to shift away from its astoundingly costly and questionably effective military-industrial complex towards an approach more suited to a multidimensional, globalized world: a diplomatic-industrial complex.

Fifty years ago in his 1961 farewell address, President Eisenhower claimed that the toil, resources and livelihood - the "very structure of our society" - was involved in defending America during the Cold War. The resulting "military-industrial complex" was comprised of an "iron triangle" among government, the military, and national industry that has since become the main driver of American grand strategy and costing taxpayers close to $500 billion per year.

More recently, 9/11 spawned an intelligence-industrial complex, with the intelligence community's budget ballooning to over $40 billion and the creation of the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS), whose FY2011 budget is $56 billion. Add it together and you have over a decade of "contractors gone wild" and questionable gains in national security.

What is needed today - more than defense and espionage - is a diplomatic-industrial complex. Diplomacy is the force multiplier which strategically melds a country's resources, population, institutions, and ideology. What Eisenhower said about the "very structure of society" being involved in national defense applies far more to diplomacy. America's companies, products, universities, and philanthropists are active in every corner of the world. When we think of American foreign policy, we should think not only of what the government does, but what Americans do, whether through,,, or entities. America's footprint around the globe is far greater than that of the State Department.

America has always had multiple voices clamoring for attention and influence in foreign policy, from ethnic diasporas to oil companies. At America's founding, the young nation barely had a foreign policy beyond its commercial presence in Europe. Even into the early 20th century, private sector leadership drove the Open Door strategy of trade expansion. American diplomacy was so sparse in the late 19th and early 20th centuries that National City Bank and Standard Oil both operated and deployed their own diplomatic corps extensively throughout Latin America and Asia. Worried by the dearth of American ambassadors in these regions, they helped finance the founding of Georgetown's School of Foreign Service, effectively America's first diplomatic academy. After World War I, business' fear of isolationism led to corporate lobbying for the League of Nations and the founding of the Council on Foreign Relations, and business made a big push to support the post-World War II Marshall Plan (which had only 15 percent public support).

Today, such a common public-private vision is needed again by which America's non-state actors are considered structurally in every issue, and included in a flexible fashion into policy formulation and implementation. In an age of diminished resources, the task for foreign policy makers is to develop an apparatus which harnesses America's vast governmental and non-governmental resources to make America's global footprint greater than the sum of its parts.

It's America's talented private sector that needs to be the tip of our diplomatic spear, building B2B and P2P alliances with American companies and citizens in the lead. Two great examples of this are Saudi Arabia and India. The big story with Saudi Arabia isn't the recent $60 billion arms deal, but the $10 billion Alcoa investment in a new aluminum smelter; only the latter hires and trains locals, building reservoirs of goodwill. And despite Obama's high-profile India visit, Hu Jintao came right on his heels to patch things up, while India will also continue buying nuclear reactor technology from France and weapons from Russia and sell petroleum to Iran. The key difference, however, is that America's software and clean-tech companies are in India, Russia's aren't. One-third of America's software imports now come from India.

No country wants America's preaching anymore; they'd rather have America's CEOs visit than Hillary Clinton. As the State Department mulls how to implement its Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR), it should remember that the world still benefits greatly from America's technocrats, not its bureaucrats. According to a 2007 Pew survey, even amidst widespread opposition to U.S. foreign policy, in 48 countries America's image and respectability remained very high in the arenas of science, technology, and culture. Of the top 100 brands in the world, 52 are still American, with the top four being Coca-Cola, IBM, Microsoft, and GE (Source: BusinessWeek). The State Department is starting to catch this wave, organizing delegations of technology investors and entrepreneurs to go to the Middle East and set-up programming and training centers for Arab youth. This costs very little, but delivers much bang for the buck.

Education might be the most successful arena of the diplomatic-industrial complex, demonstrating American far-sightedness and generosity for over a century. China's prestigious Tsinghua University was founded with money America gave back to China from indemnity payments it was forced to make after the Boxer Rebellion. Today higher education is America's best export; Harvard's dean of admissions is treated like a rock-star on recruitment trips to China. Far beyond the original crop of government supported American schools such as in Beirut and Cairo, private American universities have set up campuses around the world and particularly in the Persian Gulf countries. Doha's Education City in Qatar is packed with branches of Georgetown, Cornell, and Texas A&M, collectively having a demonstrable impact on women's rights and professionalism in the region. An American nursing school in Pakistan provides education and jobs to women who would otherwise have neither. Remember that spreading English is as important as spreading democracy or the dollar; even as foreign currencies and governance models compete with America, English remains the world's reserve language.

The diplomacy of development is also dominated by companies and NGOs. The American government is hardly magnanimous to poor countries in per capita terms, but American citizens are by far the most generous in the world. Most of the $192 billion that flowed from the U.S. to developing countries in 2007 came from corporations and foundations, as well as remittances. The Gates Foundation, of course, is now the world's largest by far, out-spending entire governments in its investments in public health programs and disease eradication across the globe.

It is fashionable these days to argue that America needs to focus on repairing itself internally, rebuilding its infrastructure and focusing on competitiveness. This is certainly true, but there is a virtuous circle to making sure all sectors of American society continue to engage internationally. When multinationals expand and grow abroad, the clear evidence is that they actually create more jobs at home as well. American financial institutions manage one-third of the world's investable assets. As they invest in and help build businesses overseas, they also generate returns for Americans across the spectrum. This is how globalization is good for America, especially when more American companies participate in it.

Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan used to say that "you cannot have a great country without a great government," but America's government is bulging and creaking. Only a new process can remind the rest of the world that America is still a leading innovator in global affairs, and set a model for others to follow. Towards the end of "Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo," the fictitious George W. Bush waxes philosophically while smoking a joint, "You don't have to trust your government to be a good American; you just have to trust in your country." The diplomatic-industrial complex is the new diplomacy Americans can believe in - because they all participate in it. [Parag Khanna is a senior research fellow at the New America Foundation and author of the newly released How to Run the World: Charting a Course to the Next Renaissance, published by Random House.] [Khanna/HuffingtonPost/8January2011] 

Why the CIA is Spying on a Changing Climate. Last summer, as torrential rains flooded Pakistan, a veteran intelligence analyst watched closely from his desk at CIA headquarters just outside the capital.

For the analyst, who heads the CIA's year-old Center on Climate Change and National Security, the worst natural disaster in Pakistan's history was a warning.

"It has the exact same symptoms you would see for future climate change events, and we're expecting to see more of them," he said later, agreeing to talk only if his name were not revealed, for security reasons. "We wanted to know: What are the conditions that lead to a situation like the Pakistan flooding? What are the important things for water flows, food security... radicalization, disease" and displaced people?

As intelligence officials assess key components of state stability, they are realizing that the norms they had been operating with - such as predictable river flows and crop yields - are shifting.

Yet the U.S. government is ill-prepared to act on climate changes that are coming faster than anticipated and threaten to bring instability to places of U.S. national interest, interviews with several dozen current and former officials and outside experts and a review of two decades' worth of government reports indicate.

Climate projections lack crucial detail, they say, and information about how people react to changes - for instance, by migrating - is sparse. Military officials say they don't yet have the intelligence they need in order to prepare for what might come.

Rolf Mowatt-Larssen, a 23-year veteran of the CIA who led the Department of Energy's intelligence unit from 2005 to 2008, said the intelligence community simply wasn't set up to deal with a problem such as climate change that wasn't about stealing secrets.

"I consider what the U.S. government is doing on climate change to be lip service," said Mowatt-Larssen, who is currently a fellow at Harvard University. "It's not serious."

Just getting to where the intelligence community is now, however, has been a challenge.

Back in the 1990s, the CIA opened an environmental center, swapped satellite imagery with Russia and cleared U.S. scientists to access classified information. But when the Bush administration took power, the center was absorbed by another office and work related to the climate was broadly neglected.

In 2007, a report by retired high-ranking military officers called attention to the national security implications of climate change, and the National Intelligence Council followed a year later with an assessment on the topic. But some Republicans attacked it as a diversion of resources.

And when CIA Director Leon Panetta stood up the climate change center in 2009, conservative lawmakers attempted to block its funding.

"The CIA's resources should be focused on monitoring terrorists in caves, not polar bears on icebergs," Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., said at the time.

Now, with calls for belt tightening coming from every corner, leadership in Congress has made it clear that the intelligence budget, which soared to $80.1 billion last year, will have to be cut. And after sweeping victories by conservatives in the midterm elections, many political insiders think the community's climate change work will be in jeopardy.

Environmental issues have long been recognized as key to understanding what might happen in unstable countries. In the 1990s, while spies studied such things as North Korean crop yields, attempting to anticipate where shortages could lead to instability, the CIA also shared a trove of classified environmental data with scientists through a program that became known as Medea.

"The whole group (of scientists) were patriots and this was an opportunity to help the country do something about the train wreck (we) saw coming" from climate change, said Robert Bindschadler, a glaciologist at NASA who received a security clearance when Medea started in 1992.

Cleared scientists also helped the CIA interpret environmental data and improve collection methods, former CIA Director John Deutch said in a 1996 speech.

But the Republican-controlled Congress gradually trimmed these programs, and after President George W. Bush took office in 2001, top-level interest in environmental security programs disappeared. Intelligence officials working on them were reassigned.

Terry Flannery, who led the CIA's environmental security center until 2000, said he had to tread lightly in his final years running it.

"You had this odd thing where it became an interchange of science and politics," he said. "At times, it was just strange."

Retired Gen. Michael Hayden, who led the CIA from 2006 to 2009, said issues such as energy and water made Bush's daily briefings, but climate change was not a part of the agenda.

"I didn't have a market for it when I was director," Hayden said in a recent interview. "It was all terrorism all the time, and when it wasn't, it was all Iran."

The Bush administration's open skepticism of global warming hurt the intelligence community's efforts to track its impact. A 2007 congressional oversight report found the administration "engaged in a systematic effort to manipulate climate change science and mislead policymakers and the public about the dangers of global warming."

Today, climate scientists say their research is hindered by a data gap resulting from inadequate funding during the Bush years. In 2005, the National Research Council said the nation's environmental satellite system was "at risk of collapse."

Even during the Bush administration, though, pockets of work moved forward.

In 2007, Department of Energy intelligence chief Mowatt-Larssen built an experimental program called Global Energy & Environment Strategic Ecosystem, or Global EESE. He tapped Carol Dumaine, a CIA foresight strategist known around the agency as a creative visionary, to lead the program.

"Our modern intelligence evolved for a different type of threat: monolithic, top-down, incrementally changing," Dumaine, who has since returned to the CIA, said in a recent interview. She, on the other hand, was "trying to grow a garden of intelligence genius."

The program brought together more than 200 of the brightest minds from around the world to explore the impact of issues such as abrupt climate change, energy infrastructure and environmental stresses in Afghanistan.

But after only two years, the program was shuttered. Former members say it was brought down by bureaucratic infighting, political pressure from Congress and the Bush White House, and concerns about including foreign nationals in the intelligence arena.

"The most important thing we lost is data. We lost the data that accompanies new ways of conducting intelligence and for getting it right with environmental problems," Mowatt-Larssen said.

In April 2007, a group of high-ranking retired military officers published a report that said projected changes to the climate posed a "serious threat to America's national security."

Within weeks, a handful of lawmakers from both parties were pushing to get climate change back on the intelligence community's agenda.

Chuck Hagel, then a Republican senator from Nebraska, drafted legislation that called climate change "a clear and present danger to the security of the United States" and would have required an intelligence report on it.

Although the provision went nowhere, the National Intelligence Council moved ahead on its own.

"The goal was to produce enough understanding of the effects, the way they played out, government capacity, to tee up for U.S. government agencies the kind of questions they better start asking now in order to be ready 20 years from now," said Thomas Fingar, who was the chairman of the NIC at the time and now teaches at Stanford University.

Three months after the assessment was completed, the NIC appointed retired Maj. Gen. Richard Engel as the director of its new climate change and state stability program.

Some lawmakers were so alarmed by the findings of the classified National Intelligence Assessment that they pushed for a resurrection of Clinton-era environmental intelligence programs.

In the months since the CIA's climate change center began operations, a team of about 15 analysts has inventoried the intelligence community's collection of environmental data, restarted the Medea program and begun developing tools that bring global climate forecasts down to the regional level.

But Pentagon officials say the information they need most doesn't yet exist.

"Right now there's a gap between, OK, we can have a weather forecast for what the weather's going to be in the next month, and then we have the climate forecast, which is 30 to 100 years out," said one Pentagon official, who spoke only after he was granted anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the news media. "It really doesn't help the combatant commanders plan their operations."

The Defense Department has sponsored research on climate change and security, and last year pledged $7.5 million to study impacts in Africa, where security experts say terrorism and climate change could become twin challenges for weak governments.

For example, some projections point to Niger, which had a military coup last year, as highly vulnerable to climate change.

"Before I started looking at Niger, I wouldn't have necessarily put it as a place that we would be that concerned about," said Joshua Busby, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin conducting the Pentagon-funded research. "But they provide a significant percentage of the world's uranium supplies, and al Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb is active there."

The CIA climate center recently brought in an Africa specialist, and its director just returned from a visit to the continent.

Senior intelligence officials say it will take a marriage of regional experts and climate change specialists to make vital connections such as these.

Last December, the center launched a website that gives other CIA analysts access to its work and the classified 2008 NIC assessment. The unit is now developing environmental warning software that combines regional climate projections with political and demographic information.

But whether this early work by the climate change center will be enough to produce needed culture change within the intelligence community remains to be seen.

"You have a lot of regional experts who haven't thought in those terms," said one senior intelligence official, who agreed to speak only if his name were not revealed, because of the sensitivity of the topic. "That's the difficult part."

Through the National Academy of Sciences, the CIA also is collaborating with outside experts who include leading climatologists, former CIA Director R. James Woolsey and former Vice President Al Gore's national security adviser, Leon Fuerth.

Ralph Cicerone, a veteran of the 1990s Medea group who's now the president of the National Academy of Sciences, leads the work. He said the group was trying to fill scientific holes that could become major problems for policymakers.

"If some future president calls up the secretary of state or the director of Central Intelligence, and says, 'Gee, I have this draft treaty on my desk, should I sign it? Can we verify it?' and one of them were to say to the president, 'Gee, we never thought of that,' that's not an acceptable answer," Cicerone said.

Intelligence officials also say more work is needed on low-probability, high-impact events. In 2003, a Pentagon-sponsored study concluded that if rapid glacial melt caused the ocean's major currents to shut down, there could be conflicts over resources, migration and significant geopolitical realignments.

"We get a lot of these shocks of one kind or the other, whether it's Katrina or the financial crisis," the senior intelligence official said. "We need to be prepared to think about how we would deal with that."

This summer, the CIA plans to host a climate war game looking at exactly these sorts of high-impact events. The CIA intends to build the scenarios with the help of security experts, scientists and insurance specialists, as well as Hollywood screenwriters who can conjure up the most unforeseeable and disastrous scenarios.

But politics makes such forward-thinking work risky. Intelligence analysis of climate change has been carefully designed to try to sidestep the topic's political controversy. The National Intelligence Council scrupulously avoided delving into the science of climate change, including whether it is man-made or cyclical, and the CIA climate center has been instructed to do the same.

But with many newly elected Republicans questioning the scientific grounding of climate change and politicians from both sides of the aisle looking for places to cut spending, many think this intelligence work could be removed from the agenda.

New House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, plans to disband the House of Representatives' three-year-old global warming committee, which has pressed the connection between climate change and national security and held a hearing where Fingar and Mowatt-Larssen testified.

"There's just no doubt that the support for focusing on (climate issues) in the intelligence community - even energy security - has completely diminished," said Eric Rosenbach, who served as Hagel's national security adviser. "They need a champion."

If a lack of political support causes this intelligence work to fall by the wayside once again, it probably will be the Pentagon that feels it most acutely. Not only is the military concerned with how a changing climate could increase conflict, but it is also the emergency responder to humanitarian crises worldwide.

"The Navy must understand where, when and how climate change will affect regions around the world," Rear Adm. David Titley, the Navy's oceanographer, said in November at the last climate change hearing of the House Science Committee's Energy and Environment Subcommittee in the previous session of Congress.

The effects of climate change are most evident in Arctic ice melt, where "new shipping routes have the potential to reshape the global transportation system," Titley told subcommittee Chairman Rep. Brian Baird, D-Wash.

The hearing began with a lively debate on climate science, but by the time Titley testified, Baird was the only committee member left.

But for the lone lame-duck congressman, Titley delivered his testimony to two rows of empty chairs.

[Mead and Snider are graduate students in Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. This story is part of Medill's National Security Reporting Project, which is overseen by Josh Meyer, a former national security writer for the Los Angeles Times who now teaches in Medill's Washington program, and Ellen Shearer, the director of Medill's Washington program.] [McClatchyDC/10January2011]



Senior Intelligence Analysts with 15+ years exp. advanced writing, editing, verbal communication and mentoring skills, TS/SCI, DC Metro Area;
BAE Systems is the premier global defense and aerospace company, delivering a full range of products and services for air, land, and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, information technology solutions, and customer support services. With 105,000 employees worldwide, BAE Systems had 2008 sales of $34.4 billion. Bachelor's degree or higher with at least 15 years intelligence experience; be an all-source intelligence analyst with advanced writing, editing, verbal communication and mentoring skills; have experience training and mentoring intelligence analysts.
Must be available for a phone or in-person interview today and/or tomorrow
If you're interested, please send me an updated copy of your resume to
Joseph Ghannam, Sr. Intel Recruitment Consultant, BAE SYSTEMS –Intelligence & Security, 2525 Network Place
Herndon, VA 20171; Phone: +1 (703) 563-8536;

OSINT WRITER SOUGHT: Security Solutions International seeks a person well-versed in Open Source Intelligence [OSINT] able to write 1500 words a week of analysis useful to U.S. Homeland Security personnel in understanding threats, not only from Terrorist groups but also from criminal or other malfeasance. SSI is using this "Intelligence Blog" to enhance membership and generate advertising revenue. Renumeration will be partially paid and partially earned through participation in advertising revenues.
To research SSI, view their work at or at their HSN - Homeland Security Network - at SSI has provided Homeland Security training to more than a thousand U.S. agencies since 2004.
To apply for the writer's position: Henry Morgenstern, CEO, Homeland Security Network LLC, 13155 SW 134th Street STE 204, Miami, FL 33186, at 954-916-7169 or email him at

MIT Seeks Scientific Intelligence Analyst and Associate. The MIT Lincoln Laboratory Cyber Systems and Technology Group conducts R&D efforts on techniques for protection , and detection and reaction to, intrusions into networked information systems, and for preventing software faults and understanding malicious code that exploits those faults. The group tests and evaluates the security of U.S. Government systems and networks and identifies and demonstrates vulnerabilities in such systems. Emphasis is placed on realistic data and experimental evaluation of techniques in test beds. Positions are located in Lexington, MA.
Scientific Intelligence Analyst: Work with a small team of technical experts to identify and research threats to US systems and infrastructure. Will research open source and classified reporting to gain big-picture as well as detailed technical understanding on relevant topics. Will perform efficient, high-quality research and will be committed to becoming a subject matter expert on assigned research topics. Prepare reports and deliver oral presentations to team members as well as Government officials.
Requirements: PhD in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Aerospace Engineering, Physics or Applied Mathematics. In lieu of a PhD, an MS with 5+ years of directly related experience will be considered. Strong knowledge and understanding of at least one of the following categories of US and foreign systems: Communication Infrastructure, Radars and Air Defense, Air Combat, UAVs, Space Systems, Mechanized Ground Combat, Naval Surface Warfare, Missile Defense, and Nuclear Capabilities.
Desired Skills and Qualifications: In addition to a technical degree, a BA or BS in International Relations or Security Studies. Written foreign language proficiency in one or more of the following: Mandarin Chinese, Russian, Arabic or Persian. Military service or intelligence community background is highly desirable, with special preference given to career intelligence officers. Formal training, certification, and/or service academy coursework in intelligence analysis methods is beneficial. An active or recently inactive TS/SCI clearance with SSBI is also highly desirable.
Associate Scientific Intelligence Analyst: Work with a small team of technical experts to identify and research threats to US systems and infrastructure. Will research open source and classified reporting to gain big-picture as well as detailed technical understanding on relevant topics. Perform efficient, high-quality research and will be committed to becoming a subject matter expert on assigned research topics. Prepare reports and deliver oral presentations to team members as well as Government officials.
Requirements: MS in a technical field such as Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Aerospace Engineering, Physics, or Computer Science. In lieu of an MS degree, a BS in the same fields with 3+ years of experience will be considered. Strong knowledge and understanding of at least one of the following categories of US and foreign systems: Communication Infrastructure, Radars and Air Defense, Air Combat, UAVs, Space Systems, Mechanized Ground Combat, Naval Surface Warfare, Missile Defense, and Nuclear Capabilities.
Desired Skills and Qualifications: In addition to a technical degree, a BA or BS in International Relations or Security Studies. Written foreign language proficiency in one or more of the following: Mandarin Chinese, Russian, Arabic or Persian. Military service or intelligence community background is highly desirable, with special preference given to career intelligence officers. Formal training, certification, and/or service academy coursework in intelligence analysis methods is beneficial. An active or recently inactive TS/SCI clearance with SSBI is also highly desirable
Interested candidates can apply on-line at US Citizenship is required.


CIA Delayed Breakup of Khan Network for Decades, Journalists Assert. The CIA for more than three decades monitored the nuclear smuggling ring once headed by former top Pakistani nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan, allowing the network to proliferate sensitive atomic technology for years in order to gather intelligence, two journalists state in a new book.

"They could literally have stopped [Khan] in his tracks (in the 1970s). It would have done an enormous amount to delay Pakistan building its own nuclear weapon, to delay the arms race on the South Asian continent and to stop Iran from getting where it is on the nuclear front," said Douglas Frantz, who with Catherine Collins authored "Fallout: The True Story of the CIA's Secret War on Nuclear Trafficking."

"This is something that the CIA, in our view, has been guilty of for more than 30 years now," Frantz told National Public Radio's "Fresh Air."

Khan in the 1970s acquired details in the Netherlands on producing fissile material for nuclear weapons. The European nation, concerned by the potential embarrassment of the leak becoming public, consulted with the CIA on whether to detain the scientist, the journalist said.

"The CIA told the Dutch, 'Let him go; we'll watch him,'" Frantz said. "This was in 1975. In the subsequent years and decades, Khan became clearly the most dangerous proliferator in history."

Pakistani authorities ultimately detained Khan at the beginning of 2004.

The CIA was believed to have obtained as informants Friedrich, Marco and Urs Tinner, Swiss engineers already deeply involved in the smuggling ring. Switzerland later launched a probe into allegations that the men had supplied Libya and Iran with components and expertise for building uranium enrichment centrifuges (see GSN, Dec. 23, 2010).

"The CIA enlisted senior officials in the Bush administration ... to begin to put pressure on the Swiss government to kill this investigation," Franz said. "But two weeks ago, on December 23, a Swiss magistrate announced that he had filed a report with the Swiss attorney general recommending charges against the three Tinners for selling nuclear equipment to Libya. ... If they go to trial, all of this could come out in the open eventually, which would be absolutely fascinating" (Dave Davies, National Public Radio, Jan. 4). [GlobalSecurityNewswire/5January2011]


Vang Pao, Hmong Guerrilla Leader, Dies in California. Vang Pao fought the Japanese as a teenager. He later led Hmong guerrillas in their CIA-backed battle against communists during the Vietnam War. More recently he was a father figure to Hmong refugees who fled Laos for the United States.

After immigrating to America once the communists seized power in Laos in 1975, Vang Pao was venerated as a leader by his transplanted countrymen who settled mainly in California's Central Valley, Minneapolis and cities in Wisconsin.

Xang Vang, the general's chief translator who fought by his side, said Vang Pao died Thursday night following a battle with pneumonia, which he caught while traveling in central California to preside over two Hmong New Year celebrations.

"I touched his hand, I called his name on his ear, and he opened his eyes briefly," Xang Vang said. "He had been getting better for the last few days, but last night he was getting worse and now he has left us."

The general had been hospitalized for about 10 days, Clovis Community Medical Center Michelle Von Tersch spokeswoman said.

Xiong was at the hospital with a growing crowd of mourners. He said he spoke briefly with family members, who were planning a memorial service, but had no details on what caused Vang Pao's death.

During World War II, Vang Pao fought to prevent the Japanese from seizing control of Laos.

In the 1950s, he joined the French in the war against the North Vietnamese who were dominating Laos and later, as a general in the Royal Army of Laos, worked with the CIA to wage a covert war there.

Former CIA Chief William Colby once called Pao "the biggest hero of the Vietnam War," for the 15 years he spent heading a CIA-sponsored guerrilla army fighting against a communist takeover of the Southeast Asian peninsula.

After his guerrillas ultimately lost to communist forces, Vang Pao came to the U.S., where he was credited with brokering the resettlement of tens of thousands of Hmong, an ethnic minority from the hillsides of Laos.

"He's the last of his kind, the last of the leadership that carries that reference that everyone holds dear," said Blong Xiong, a Fresno city councilman and the first Hmong-American in California to win a city council seat. "Whether they're young or old, they hear his name, there's the respect that goes with it."

Regarded by Hmong immigrants as an exiled head of state, Vang Pao made frequent appearances at Hmong cultural and religious festivals and often was asked to mediate disputes or solve problems.

In 2007, however, he was arrested and charged with other Hmong leaders in federal court with conspiracy in a plot to kill communist officials in his native country. Federal prosecutors alleged the Lao liberation movement known as Neo Hom raised millions of dollars to recruit a mercenary force and conspired to obtain weapons.

Even after his indictment, he appeared as the guest of honor at Hmong New Year celebrations in St. Paul and Fresno, where crowds of his supporters gathered to catch a glimpse of the highly decorated general as he arrived in a limousine.

The charges against Vang Pao were dropped in 2009, "after investigators completed the time-consuming process of translating more than 30,000 pages of documents," then-U.S. Attorney Lawrence G. Brown said in a written statement. The government arrested the defendants before understanding all the evidence because they felt a threat was imminent, he said.

In November, a federal judge in Sacramento threw out parts of the case against 12 other defendants. They include retired U.S. Army Lt. Col. Youa True Vang and 11 members of California's Hmong community, many of whom fought for the U.S. during the Vietnam War. All 12 have pleaded not guilty since their arrests in 2007.

"Vang Pao was a great man and a true American hero. He served his country for many years in his homeland, and he continued to serve it in America," said attorney William Portanova, who represents one of the remaining Hmong defendants. "To think that these elderly men would be in a position to try to overthrow a country is, on its face, almost laughable."

Lauren Horwood, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office in Sacramento, said she had no immediate comment.

Vang Pao had been a source of controversy for several years before the case was filed.

In 2002, the city of Madison, Wis., dropped a plan to name a park in his honor after a University of Wisconsin-Madison professor cited published sources alleging that Vang Pao had ordered executions of his own followers, of enemy prisoners of war and of his political enemies.

Five years later, the Madison school board removed his name from a new elementary school named for him, after dissenters said it should not bear the name of a figure with such a violent history.

But such criticism meant little to Hmong families who looked to Vang Pao for guidance as they struggled to set up farms and businesses in the U.S. and assume a new, American identity. The general formed several nonprofits to aid the refugee communities and set up a council to mediate disputes between the 18 Hmong clans, whose president he hand-picked for decades.

"He's always been kind of the glue that held everyone together," said Lar Yang of Fresno, who featured an interview with Vang Pao last month in the Hmong business directory he publishes annually.

"He's the one that always resolved everything ... I don't think it can be filled by one person at this point. There will probably be a search for identity. There will be a lot of chaos for a little while, until things get settled." [AP/6January2011] 

William Robertson. Sportsman, soldier and spymaster.

William (Bill) Robertson, who has died aged 93, had just the right mixture of personal attributes to be successful at all three of these careers, any one of which would be beyond most of us.

Deeply admired by all who knew him for his leadership qualities and his tenacity, Robertson was by nature a private man, but one who was able to combine these tough traits with personal charm to claim some remarkable achievements over his long and interesting life.

Prominent among these was his role in the establishment of the Australian Secret Intelligence Service in 1952 and its operation over the next 25 years, for which he was made a Commander of the British Empire in 1976.

His service in the Australian Army during World War II earned him two Mentions in Dispatches, an Order of the British Empire, the Military Cross and the French Legion of Honour. And before the war, he had managed to reach the pinnacle of sporting achievement by rowing at Oxford University and for the London Rowing Club in 1938 and 1939.

But it was his life as a spymaster that is perhaps the most intriguing. Robertson's career in intelligence probably began earlier than the records show, but after being demobbed from the army in 1947 with the rank of lieutenant colonel, he was quickly recruited from his post-war civilian job with steel company John Lysaght in Wollongong by Alfred Brookes, the first director of ASIS, to help him with a study of the intelligence role of MI6 in Britain. Brookes's plan was to recommend to prime minister Robert Menzies that a similar organisation be established in Australia.

Their recommendations were accepted and by 1952 ASIS had been covertly set up. The organisation's existence was known only to a handful of people although, interestingly, when Robertson was doing his initial training at MI6 he met the Russian double agent Kim Philby. Speculation is that the Russians probably knew of ASIS's establishment before anyone else. Robertson served first as deputy director and then director, and is remembered as much for his capable management and leadership skills as for his ability to gather and assess intelligence.

Although this chapter in his life ended in controversy in 1975 when the then prime minister, Gough Whitlam, terminated his appointment in a fit of rage during the turbulent final few weeks of his own tenure in 1975, Robertson's role in developing Australia's intelligence capability was widely admired by those who knew about the service. He continued to be a highly respected member of the intelligence community until his death. His story was featured in a cover article by Max Suich in Inquirer in 2009.

Robertson's dismissal by Whitlam was almost as covert as his original recruitment and attracted no publicity until sometime later, but the change of government opened the way for him to become closely involved as an adviser to a royal commission, set up earlier by Whitlam and headed by Mr. Justice Hope, which was inquiring into Australia's security and intelligence operations. Robertson's work with the commission earned him the respect of the commissioner, and in the final report ASIS was accorded valuable praise for the work it had been doing. The actions of ASIS and Robertson in the lead-up to his dismissal had been vindicated and his CBE was announced in the 1976 Queen's birthday honours.

Robertson returned to government service in 1978 when prime minister Malcolm Fraser appointed him to head a new institution to co-ordinate anti-terrorism intelligence and training among federal and state authorities, the Protective Services Co-ordination Centre. Apparently Fraser had been alarmed at how easily he had been mobbed by angry students at Monash University while under the protection of state police. At that time, the states were responsible for the security for visiting dignitaries and Fraser's unpleasant experience led him to initiate the change to a national organization. In a way, Robertson's appointment to the PSCC was the new government's way of saying sorry.

Robertson's interest in intelligence and the military began early in his life. His father, William St. Leonard Robertson, had served with the Australian Light Horse in the Boer War and went on to make a career of the military. Robertson joined the school cadets at Melbourne Grammar School, which he attended from 1923 to 1936, and by the time he left school, he had received a full commission as a lieutenant in Australia's Citizen Military Forces.

He followed family tradition to attend Wadham College at Oxford University where he read chemistry and mathematics but was probably more focused on his rowing, another family tradition. His rowing was more successful than his studies (in fact, poor results meant he was almost obliged to leave the college in 1939).

At the outbreak of hostilities Robertson returned to Australia to enlist with the Australian Infantry Forces. Five months later his battalion disembarked in Egypt and Robertson took part in the early battles of the Western Desert. During the battle for Tobruk, he was injured by an Italian shell and left for dead on the battlefield.

He rejoined his battalion in time to embark with them for northern Greece - just as the main German attack began in March 1941. He earned his Military Cross during the battle of Veve Pass. He and his men were embarked on the last ship out of port when they were sunk by a German bomb. Robertson was picked up by a British destroyer.

At the start of the Japanese war in March 1942, Robertson's division returned to Australia, and it was on the ship home that he met Charles Spry, and they became life-long friends. Later, Spry, the newly appointed head of ASIO, would recommend him to Alfred Brookes when Brookes was looking for help in his proposal to Menzies for an Australian international spy agency.

In 1944, Robertson was posted to the British Army, arriving in time for the Normandy landing and he remained at the front in Europe until relieved in December 1944. He was one of the first Australian officers to land and endured six months of solid fighting through Europe. He remained in London until the war was over.

Robertson continued to advise on security issues following his retirement in 1982, setting up a consultancy to work with other intelligence and security experts.

In recent years, Robertson found more time to devote to his family history and his love of art, though he never lost his interest in national and international affairs.

His great grandfather, also William Robertson, had arrived in Hobart in 1822 and, as a member of the Port Phillip Association, which enlisted John Batman to sail to Port Phillip and negotiate a treaty with the local Aborigines, had been instrumental in opening up land around Port Phillip Bay. Robertson had inherited many family papers dating back to these times, and keenly developed links and shared information with other family historians in Australia and overseas. His interest in colonial Australian art stemmed from a collection of fine family portraits by the artists Thomas Bock and Robert Dowling.

Robertson married Jean King-Spark in London on October 31, 1946, and is survived by their two children, Johnnie and Fiona, five grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. His contribution to Australia has been enormous and he will be missed.

[Malcolm Robertson is a freelance writer based in Canberra. His great-grandfather and Bill Robertson's father were brothers. Both served together in the Boer War and had military careers.] [TheAustralian/6January2011] 

Coming Educational Events


MANY Spy Museum Events in January and February with full details are listed on the AFIO Website at The titles for some of these are in detail below and online.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011, 6:30pm - Washington, DC - "Spies of the Civil Rights Movement" - at the International Spy Museum

"The informant, paid up to $200 a month, helped track King in the days before his murder."—Memphis Commercial Appeal, 12 September 2010
One of the most shocking aspects of the civil rights era are the spies, smear campaigns, and other dirty tricks the U.S. government used to infiltrate and discredit the movement and its leaders—especially Dr. Martin Luther King. Join Rick Bowers, author of Spies of Mississippi: The True Story of the Spy Network that Tried to Destroy the Civil Rights Movement, for a fascinating, behind-the-scenes view of the operatives who infiltrated the movement in the 1950s and '60s. From the extensive, secret, anti-civil rights espionage program waged by the state of Mississippi after Brown vs. Board of Education to the clandestine FBI campaign against King, this overview of a disturbing chapter in domestic intelligence is essential for anyone interested in the rights of citizens in the face of government intrusion and oppression. Bowers draws upon once-secret investigative reports and exclusive interviews with both the spies and the spied-upon to lift the curtain on this shameful period.
WHERE: International Spy Museum: 800 F Street, NW, Washington, DC. Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
Tickets: $12.50 per person To register visit:

12 January 2011, 11:30 a.m. - Scottsdale, AZ - AFIO Arizona Chapter hosts Alfonso Sapia-Bosch on "The Use, Overuse, and Mis-use of Classified Information." Dr. Sapia-Bosch devoted the bulk of his active career to dealing with Latin American political, economic, military and cultural issues. He was president of the Latin American Advisory Group, Ltd., a management advisory firm that did business in Latin America. He has been an adjunct professor of international studies at "Thunderbird," At present he is Senior Director for National Defense Technology and adjunct professor at the Biodesign Institute, Arizona State University.
He has long experience as a national security policymaker, analyst, collector, operational manager, inspector, counterintelligence officer, and coordinator; he served in the Army reserve as a strategic intelligence officer. Dr. Sapia-Bosch entered on duty in 1961 with the Central Intelligence Agency as a Latin American analyst. He was later appointed division chief supervising analysts working on Latin America and the Caribbean. As a senior member of the embassy country team, he supervised all intelligence gathering efforts, dealt with senior host country officials, including the president, and coordinated efforts with various U.S. military departments.
He will speak on "The Use, Overuse and Mis-use of Classified Information."
We all have experience in this arena and I would like to get a discussion going with the group after giving out some facts, some perceptions on how it was in the "old" days and what appears to have changed over the years. The WikiLeaks affair, is this a disaster or an opportunity? Some historical perspective: how many are cleared? Classified work; is all of it necessary or worthwhile. Does everyone need to know about almost everything? How about the "need to know." Is this still the rule or has it been abrogated in some way? What changes might be made to protect "real" secrets? Presentation will be unclassified. This event is being held at: McCormick Ranch Golf Club (7505 McCormick Parkway, Scottsdale AZ 85258 ~ Phone 480.948.0260). Meeting fees will be as follows: $20.00 for AFIO members, $22.00 for guests. For reservations or questions, please email Simone or or call and leave a message on 602.570.6016.

15 January 2011, 2 p.m. - Kennebunk, ME - "TURKEY'S ROAD TO THE FUTURE" - at this AFIO Maine event. Kutlay (Peter) Kaya, international trade specialist and consultant will be guest speaker at the January 15 meeting of the Maine Chapter of the Association for Intelligence Officers. Kaya will speak about Turkey's position in light of its political, military, and religious environment and how the outcome of the coming elections will affect Turkey's relationships in the Middle East and with the United States. Kaya is an international trade consultant and broker for over 30 companies on five continents. His previous experience includes positions with the Turkish government and two years in the Turkish Army. He has been in the United States since 1999. He is a graduate of 19 Mayis University in Samsun, Turkey. In 2003 he earned an M. A. degree from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. The meeting is open to the public and will be held at the Community House, 9 Temple Street, Kennebunkport, located directly across from the Kennebunkport Post Office, uphill from the municipal parking lot. For information call 967-4298.

Thursday, 20 January 2011, 11:30 am - Colorado Springs, CO - Credit Card Fraud - 'Tis the Season - the talk at the Rocky Mountain Chapter by the President of TLC Computer Repair, Jesus Damian

Damian will speak on Credit Card Fraud (CCF). Credit cards are extremely vulnerable to fraud and are used extensively by terrorists. The Internet functions as a mechanism to steal credit card information through hacking, phishing, and other means. An elaborate multi-million dollar CCF scheme by Pakistanis in 2003, was terminated in the Washington, D.C. area. Hamas, Hezbollah and al-Qaeda are extensively involved in CCF. The surprise is how much money can be made at different levels of the schemes. To be held at the new location AFA... Eisenhower Golf Course Club House. Please RSVP to Tom VanWormer at

20 January 2011 – San Francisco, CA – The AFIO Jim Quesada Chapter hosts Supervisory Special Agent (SSA) Steven Merrill, FBI.

SSA Merrill will be speaking about the FBI's first response to the November 2008 Mumbai attacks. The meeting will be held at UICC, 2700 45th Avenue, San Francisco (between Sloat/Wawona): 11:30 AM no host cocktails; noon - luncheon. $25 member rate with advance reservation and payment; $35 non-member. E-mail RSVP to Mariko Kawaguchi (please indicate pot roast or fish): and mail check made out to "AFIO" to: Mariko Kawaguchi, P.O. Box 117578 Burlingame, CA 94011

20 January 2010, 12:30 - 2:30 pm - Los Angeles, CA - AFIO Los Angeles hosts their annual meeting

The AFIO LA-Area Chapters holds their annual chapter meeting at the LMU campus. Pizza lunch will be served, this meeting is open only to L.A. Area chapter members in good standing, no guests. The meeting will cover our objectives and chapter officer elections for 2011. Please RSVP via email if you plan to attend the annual meeting.

Thursday, 20 January 2011, 11:30 am - Colorado Springs, CO - Credit Card Fraud - 'Tis the Season - the talk at the Rocky Mountain Chapter by the President of TLC Computer Repair, Jesus Damian
Damian will speak on Credit Card Fraud (CCF). Credit cards are extremely vulnerable to fraud and are used extensively by terrorists. The Internet functions as a mechanism to steal credit card information through hacking, phishing, and other means. An elaborate multi-million dollar CCF scheme by Pakistanis in 2003, was terminated in the Washington, D.C. area. Hamas, Hezbollah and al-Qaeda are extensively involved in CCF. The surprise is how much money can be made at different levels of the schemes. To be held at the new location AFA... Eisenhower Golf Course Club House. Please RSVP to Tom VanWormer at

20 January 2011 - Arlington, VA - "Mexican Drug Wars" the topic at this Defense Intelligence Forum
The Forum meets at the Pulcinella Restaurant, 6852 Old Dominion Drive, McLean, VA The speaker will be Colonel Sergio de la Pe�a (USA, Retired), who will speak on Mexican Drug Wars: A Practitioner's Perspective.
A former Foreign Area Officer, Colonel de la Pe�a has eighteen years' experience in Western Hemisphere affairs with emphasis on stopping growth and transport of drugs. He now is Director of Business Development for the Americas for Military Professional Resources, Incorporated. He most recently worked with the Mexican government on countering the drug trade's effect on Mexican security. As Northern Command International Affairs Division chief, he worked closely with Mexican counterparts to craft the theater's security engagement strategy. He served in the International Army Programs Directorate in Army Training and Doctrine Command, as Army Attach� in Venezuela, as Army Section Chief in the US Military Group-Chile, and as commander of the US Military Observer Group-Washington. Colonel de la Pe�a was born in Chihuahua, Mexico. He was commissioned in Air Defense Artillery and is both Airborne and Ranger qualified. He holds a BS from the University of Iowa and a Masters Degree in Military Arts and Science.
Make reservations by 12 January by email to Include names, telephone numbers, and email addresses. For meal selections, choose among chicken cacciatore, tilapia puttanesca, lasagna, sausage with peppers, or pasta with portabello. Pay at the door with a check for $29 per person payable to DIAA, Inc. THE FORUM DOESN'T TAKE CASH! If you don't have a check, you'll have to have the restaurant charge your credit or debit card $29 and give us the restaurant's copy of the receipt when you check in.

Friday, 21 January 2011 - McLean, VA - AFIO National Winter Luncheon with The Honorable James R. Clapper, DNI
Register now for the Winter Luncheon featuring The Honorable James R. Clapper, Jr., Director of National Intelligence, speaking Off The Record at noon. Earlier that morning - at 11 a.m. - we will have E. J. Kimball, Director, Government Relations for JORGE Scientific Corporation, and President of Strategic Engagement Group, on the multi-author new book, Shariah: The Threat to America. 3-Course Luncheon is served at 1 p.m. Check in for badge pickup at 10:30 a.m. Event closes at 2 p.m.
EVENT LOCATION: The Crowne Plaza, 1960 Chain Bridge Rd, McLean, Virginia 22102
Driving directions here or use this link:
Register Now To Be Certain of Space

Wednesday, 26 January 2011, 6:30pm - Washington, DC - "An Introduction to Geospatial Intelligence" - at the International Spy Museum

"GEOINT plays a critical role in virtually every Intelligence Community and Department of Defense mission ... "—Vice Admiral Robert B. Murrett, U.S. Navy
Geospatial intelligence (GEOINT) is a rapidly evolving building block of our national security. But what exactly is this high tech discipline that strives to reveal the ground truth? How is it being used to rapidly provide insights into the scope and range of human activity, explore natural features across physical terrain, accurately locate significant events and activities, and precisely measure details above, on, and underneath the Earth's surface. Keith J. Masback, president of the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF) and former member of the Defense Intelligence Senior Executive Service at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, leads this overview of GEOINT for the lay person. With the assistance of other experts in the field, he will reveal exciting current applications and explain how data collected by high resolution electronic sensors on satellites, remotely piloted aircraft, and ground vehicles is interpreted by analysts using sophisticated automated systems. Participants will learn basic techniques for extracting information from images, then using real-world problems and data, they will test their own skills as "geospatial intelligence analysts" to discover how GEOINT is transforming how we engage with our world.
WHERE: International Spy Museum: 800 F Street, NW, Washington, DC. Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
Tickets: $15.00 per person To register visit:

Sunday 30 January 2011, 6 pm - Lyndhurst, OH - AFIO N Ohio Buffet Dinner Meeting featuring COL John Alexander on "Geotransformational Trends and their Impact on the Practice of Intelligence." Meeting includes Election of Officers.
AGENDA:"Election of Officers "Report on AFIO National Symposium "Speaker - COL John Alexander "Please submit additional proposed Agenda items to as soon as possible.
WHERE: Bar Louie Lyndhurst Legacy Village Mall 24337 Cedar Road Lyndhurst, OH 44124 (216) 325-1120
COST: Chapter and AFIO Members and their guests $25.00; National AFIO Members and their guests $28.00 Non-Members $30.00
RSVP: Email to or phone the names of those attending to 440-424-4071 RSVP's will be considered firm.
Reservation needed by January 24, 2011

Tuesday, 1 February 2011, 6:30 pm - Washington, DC - "The Next Decade: An Evening with George Friedman" at the International Spy Museum

Join Author George Friedman for his inside view on ten years that will set the course of the 21st century. In his new book The Next Decade, Friedman directs his penetrating gaze to the immediate future as a follow-up to his bestseller, The Next 100 Years.
George Friedman is the founder and chief executive officer of Stratfor, a private global intelligence firm. Friedman has access to the latest information and intelligence affecting the world today. By combining the insights from his dynamic intelligence network with his extensive background in geopolitical analysis, he is uniquely poised to forecast the events and challenges that will test America and the world in the coming decade.
WHERE: At the International Spy Museum: 800 F Street, NW Washington, DC. Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
TICKETS: $15 per person. To register:

Wednesday, 2 February 2011, 10:15 am - Washington, DC - "China's Mole" at the International Spy Museum - Chinese-Americans Filching American Secrets

Former FBI Washington Field Office squad supervisor, Ivian C. Smith, author of Inside: A Top G-Man Exposes Spies, Lies, and Bureaucratic Bungling in the FBI, Smith will take you inside the case that revealed the CIA's leading Chinese linguist, Larry Chin, had been a spy for more than 30 years. Part of the Spy Museum's THE SPIES WITHIN: UNDERCOVER IN THE USA series. WHERE: International Spy Museum: 800 F Street, NW, Washington, DC. Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
TICKETS: $112 for all four programs on Feb 2, 9, 16, and 23. (must be purchased through the Smithsonian). To register or for more information, visit

Monday, 7 February 2011, 6:30pm - Washington, DC - "Sex(pionage): Spies, Lies, and Naked Thighs" at the International Spy Museum
Anna Chapman "had a libido worthy of a James Bond femme fatale."—New York Post, 5 July, 2010
As Valentine's Day approaches, some lovers plan sensual dinners while others prepare to search their paramours' computer hard drives. Romantic surprises aren't always a good thing! And if you have something to hide you might just find yourself the victim of one of the oldest tricks of the trade: sexpionage. From ancient intrigues to Anna Chapman, spies, counterspies, and terrorists often conduct their undercover activities under the covers! International Spy Museum Board Member, retired FBI supervisory special agent, and owner/founder of the Centre for Counterintelligence and Security Studies, David G. Major will reveal how seduction isused as a tool to attract and manipulate assets, to coerce and/or attempt to coerce and compromise targets, and to control spies in both reality and fiction. Major will tell all about the spies who stop at nothing to get their man—or woman! Guests will enjoy a Zola Choctini as they gather essential knowledge for any questionable or suspicious relationship.
Tickets: $25.00 per person, 18 and older only. Register at

Tuesday, 8 February 2011, 11:30 am - Tampa, FL - AFIO Suncoast Chapter luncheon features Florida State Rep. Kevin C. Ambler.

Kevin C. Ambler (R) has served in the Florida State House of Representatives, District 47. District 47 is located in Northwest Hillsborough County. Representative Ambler attended Cornell University on a four-year Air Force ROTC scholarship where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in economics in 1983. Upon graduation, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the United States Air Force. In 1986, he received his J.D. from Southwestern University School of Law in Los Angeles, California. Soon after, he was appointed as an Air Force judge advocate and assigned to the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate, MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, where he served for nearly 5 years in several positions including Chief of Claims, Chief of Legal Assistance, Chief of Military Justice and Chief of the Civil Law division. During this same time, he also was appointed by the U.S. Attorney General as a Special Assistant United States Attorney and was responsible for prosecuting criminal cases in federal court against civilians arising on MacDill AFB. Later, his responsibilities expanded to defending the United States in federal court in medical malpractice and personal injury cases arising under the Federal Tort Claims Act. Representative Ambler entered private practice and transferred to the Air Force Reserves in 1991. During his first year as a reservist, he was awarded the Harmon Award by the Air Force Judge Advocate General as the Most Outstanding Reserve Judge Advocate in the U.S. Air Force. Representative Ambler's other military decorations include the Air Force Achievement Medal, two Air Force Meritorious Service Medals, and two National Defense Services Medals.
Location: MacDill AFB Officer's Club.
Please RSVP no later than January 31st with the names of any guests to or or call (813) 995-2200 or visit on web at Refer to the information "To attend our Meeting" for important details. Check-in at 1130 hours; opening ceremonies, lunch and business meeting at noon, followed by our speaker,
We have maintained the all-inclusive cost at $15. The cash wine and soda bar will open at 1100 hours for those that wish to come early to socialize.

Wednesday, 9 February 2011, 10:15 am - Washington, DC - "Israel's Controversial Spy" at the International Spy Museum - Jewish-Americans Stealing Secrets for Israel

Ron Olive, author of Capturing Jonathan Pollard, and the assistant special agent in charge of counterintelligence in the Washington Naval Investigative Service office when Pollard was arrested, will take you behind the scenes of this case and the ongoing controversy surrounding Pollard's imprisonment. Part of the Spy Museum's THE SPIES WITHIN: UNDERCOVER IN THE USA series.
WHERE: International Spy Museum: 800 F Street, NW, Washington, DC. Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
TICKETS: $112 for all four programs on Feb 2, 9, 16, and 23. (must be purchased through the Smithsonian) To register or for more information, visit

11 and 12 February 2011 - Orange Park, FL - The AFIO North Florida Chapter hosts FBI SAC Jax, James Casey, including tour of Jax FBI Field office

In conjunction with SAC Casey's presentation at the chapter luncheon being held Saturday, February 12, our Chapter President Baird has arranged a tour of the Jax FBI Field Office the day before -- 2:00 pm on Friday, February 11th. All participants must undergo an FBI background check and for that they need the following personal information: Full name, Social Security number, and date of birth. Rush this to Vince Carnes at or 352-332-6150 by email or by phone on or before Friday, January 28th. Additional restrictions: NO electronic devices, NO cell phones - leave these at home or in your car. A photo ID will be necessary for admittance. Tandy and I look forward to seeing everyone at the meeting, and remember that family and guests are cordially invited to either or both parts of this two day event: FBI visit and/or the luncheon. To attend the luncheon on the 12th, RSVP to Quiel at or 904-545-9549.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011, 10:15 am - Washington, DC - "The Cuban Sympathizers" at the International Spy Museum - Pro-Castro-Americans Stealing Secrets for Cuba

Discover what made Kendall and Gwendolyn Myers spurn their well-connected lives in DC to systematically betray their country until their arrest in June of 2009. Robert Booth, retired State Department diplomatic security agent and CI Centre faculty member shines light on this intriguing case. Part of the Spy Museum's THE SPIES WITHIN: UNDERCOVER IN THE USA series.
WHERE: International Spy Museum: 800 F Street, NW, Washington, DC. Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
TICKETS: $112 for all four programs on Feb 2, 9, 16, and 23. (must be purchased through the Smithsonian). To register or for more information, visit

Wednesday, 23 February 2011, 10:15 am - Washington, DC - "The Russian Illegals" at the International Spy Museum - Russian-Americans Stealing Secrets for Russia

Get the inside story on the June 2010 roundup of ten Russian "deep-cover" spies—from sexy agent Anna Chapman to stylish young Mikhail Semenko. International Spy Museum historian and former CIA analyst, Mark Stout will reveal the latest information on the investigation, the spy swap, and the damage done. Part of the Spy Museum's THE SPIES WITHIN: UNDERCOVER IN THE USA series.
WHERE: International Spy Museum: 800 F Street, NW, Washington, DC. Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
TICKETS: $112 for all four programs on Feb 2, 9, 16, and 23. (must be purchased through the Smithsonian). To register or for more information, visit

For Additional Events two+ months or greater....view our online Calendar of Events


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