How to Fix US Intelligence

By Richard A. Stubbing and Melvin A. Goodman | The Christian Science Monitor, June 26, 2002 | Go to article overview

How to Fix US Intelligence


Richard A. Stubbing and Melvin A. Goodman, The Christian Science Monitor


Accurate and timely intelligence is the critical first line of defense against terrorism, America's major national security threat in the 21st century. The contentious debate over the proposed new Department of Homeland Security merely masks the far greater need to reform the intelligence community.

That community's performance in the past quarter century has been unacceptable. It failed to warn of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and overstated Soviet military and economic power. The first Indian nuclear test in 1974 came as a surprise. When the CIA missed Indian underground testing in 1998, Director George Tenet stated: "We didn't have a clue."

Intelligence misses over many decades in the Mideast are too numerous to list. Before the failure of Sept. 11, the CIA and FBI provided no warning of terrorist attacks in the 1990s, including those on the World Trade Center in 1993, the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, and the USS Cole in 2000.

How do we explain this miserable performance? After all, the United States spends well over $30 billion annually on 13 intelligence agencies, with a director of central intelligence (DCI) responsible for foreign intelligence and an FBI responsible for domestic intelligence.

Unfortunately, the DCI has direct control over the CIA but not over key agencies staffed by, and reporting to, the Pentagon. The priorities of the DCI and those of the Pentagon are quite different. Turf wars and information hoarding are endemic to all intelligence bureaucracies. The protection of "sources and methods" has long been an obstacle to information sharing, with the CIA and the FBI having a long history of poor communication.

The CIA and FBI both suffer from organizational overload. The CIA has operational missions to collect human intelligence and conduct covert action. It is also responsible for the analysis and publication of national intelligence estimates. The agency cannot perform both missions well.

The FBI also suffers from a bipolar mission. Its traditional law- enforcement mission involves reacting to crimes that have already occurred. Its counterterrorism mission, by contrast, requires a proactive role - ferreting out incipient threats to national security. Reorganization is required in both agencies, and is central to changing the culture of motivation of the CIA and FBI.

The current structure for foreign intelligence must change, but the power of entrenched bureaucracies at the Pentagon, CIA, and FBI and their close allies in Congress has thwarted all efforts to correct flaws. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

How to Fix US Intelligence
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.