Closing Thought–28Jan19

What the Hell is DIA?

30 years ago very few Americans had evn heard of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)….it was ultra secret and a bit shadowy…but recently the former head of DIA has made the news and a DIA contractor has been killed in Syria….so once again…what the Hell is the DIA?

DIA, provides military intelligence to warfighters, defense policymakers and force planners in the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community, in support of U.S. military planning and operations and weapon systems acquisition.  We plan, manage, and execute intelligence operations during peacetime, crisis, and war.

Our diverse workforce is skilled in military history and doctrine, economics, physics, chemistry, world history, political science, bio-sciences, and computer sciences to name a few. We travel the world, and meet and work closely with professionals from foreign countries.

To this day few people know exactly what the DIA does…it came to be a thing when Obama fired the head of the DIA, Flynn…..but functions are still in the shadowy world of intelligence.

This is a new day and a new transparency…..

…the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Lt. Gen. Robert P. Ashley Jr., gave a wide-ranging interview in which he discussed the DIA’s core mission. Ashley noted that the DIA is charged with producing foundational military intelligence for consumption by warfighters and senior leaders to avoid surprise and prevent or decisively win wars.

As a DIA veteran, however, I’ve always worried that descriptions of the agency’s core mission have typically been overly broad and never been quite so clear cut. Ambiguity over the DIA’s responsibilities prompted Congress to probe more deeply into the specifics of how the agency is charged with supporting U.S. national security and defense objectives. Specifically, Section 2432 of the latest proposed Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 seeks “to prevent imbalanced priorities, insufficient or misaligned resources, and the unauthorized expansion of mission parameters” of the DIA. It further calls for “a repeatable process for evaluating the addition, transfer, or elimination of defense intelligence missions, roles, and functions, currently performed or to be performed in the future by the Defense Intelligence Agency.” Thus, a clearer explanation of what the DIA does and, more importantly, what it is supposed to be doing is in order, and I try to provide that here.

https://warontherocks.com/2019/01/explaining-the-dias-critical-role-in-national-security/

Just another cog in our National Security…..

Hopefully I help my reader understand the function and the necessity of this “agency” within our intel community.

Will CIA Make History?

Pompeo is gone from the CIA to the big seat at State…..the word now is that a women will lead the CIA…..that would be historic…..

With his decision to move CIA chief Mike Pompeo into the post of secretary of state, President Trump made a little history. He also nominated Gina Haspel to replace Pompeo, thus setting her up to be the first woman to run the spy agency. The nomination must be confirmed by the Senate, and it’s a safe bet that critics will raise the issue of Haspel’s links to the CIA’s controversial waterboarding program. Haspel, as was reported last year during her confirmation process to become deputy CIA chief, once ran a secret CIA prison in Thailand where terror suspects such as Abu Zubaydah and Abd al Rahim al-Nashiri were waterboarded in 2002, reports the AP. In fact, Zubaydah was waterboarded 83 times, per NPR, which also notes that Haspel is accused of destroying videotapes of the interrogations after Congress demanded they be preserved.

The flip side of her resume is that Haspel joined the CIA in 1985 and made a name for herself in covert operations, reports USA Today. Trump called Haspel an “outstanding person,” and Time notes that President Obama’s national intelligence director, James Clapper, said last year that he was happy she’d been nominated for the No. 2 post and that Haspel was “widely and deeply respected by the workforce.” Still, the waterboarding issue had already surfaced in the first hours after Trump’s announcement. “No one who had a hand in torturing individuals deserves to ever hold public office again, let alone lead an agency,” said Human Rights First’s Raha Wala, per the AP. No word yet on when the Senate confirmation process will begin

I was mistaken….I thought the ass kisser Sen. Cotton would be made head of the CIA…..he should have to wait for the next opening…..and that opening my be McMasters gig……

Step Right Up!

Let the meddling begin.

It is a prove fact the the Russian meddled in our 2016 election…..I do not care at this point who won the goddamn thing only that a foreign entity was brazen and emboldened enough to actually get into our process and fuck around.

Now that we know that these pricks did what they did it is time for the US and its intel agencies to find a way to stop this from ever happening again…..right?

Boy would you be wrong in that thinking……

The New York Times is out with an attention-grabbing statistic related to the government’s effort to fight Russian interference in US elections: The State Department has been allocated $120 million to counter foreign meddling but has not spent a single dollar of that sum. The story chalks it up in part to President Trump’s unwillingness to confront Moscow on the issue, as well as Rex Tillerson’s apparent skepticism that the money would do any good. “If it’s their intention to interfere, they’re going to find ways to do that,” Tillerson told Fox News last month. One tangible result of the ambivalence: None of the 23 analysts working in the department’s Global Engagement Center, whose job it is to deter Moscow’s propaganda, speaks Russian.

“There are now thousands of former Russian journalists who have been exiled or fired who are doing counter-Russian stuff in exile who could help,” says Richard Stengel, who had oversight of the center under former President Obama. Congress directed the Pentagon in late 2016 to make $60 million available for the State Department’s efforts, but Tillerson did not act in time to use it. Another $60 million was allotted for the following fiscal year, and after five months of deliberation, Tillerson has requested $40 million of that. The department should get the money around April. Meanwhile, a poll by Axios finds that most Americans don’t think the Trump administration will stop foreign interference in the 2018 midterms.

Why?

What part of the attack on our process warrants NO money being spent to see that it never happens again?

How much more will Congress accept?  How much more leeway will Russia be given by this Congress and this president?

Maybe Tillerson is going to use that money to re-decorate his office and build a new “safe room” when the president yells at him.

This president is pathetic…..this Congress is pathetic…….This State Department is beyond pathetic and feeble.

Maybe it is time to make cyber-security a priority……or not……or is this just more about the soft spot that Trump has for his Russian buddies?

Intel For Profit

I have written several posts about the privatization of war by using mercenaries…..corporations like Blackwater like to call themselves a security company but yet they supply mercenaries to fight in several countries…..soldiering for profit.

Nowadays they are also entering into the world of intel gathering taking up some of the slack of our intel agencies like NSA or CIA…….anytime there is a chance for profit I can foresee problems……

There has been an excellent look into this problem with a 3 part series on the privatization of our intel gathering……

Privatized and politicized intelligence is undermining the mission of providing unbiased information to both high-level decision makers and the American public,

Back in 1991, during the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the general consensus of the intelligence community was that America needed a strong Russia. Russians bore the weight of dismantling the Soviet Union and an internally strong and stable Russia was considered the biggest stable democratic government in the hemisphere.

A strong Russia provides stability throughout the region, it was understood. Without a strong and stable Russia, the massive Russian Federation would descend into small nationalist countries. Warring nations and instability would be the norm and not the exception.

https://consortiumnews.com/2018/02/11/u-s-intelligence-crisis-poses-a-threat-to-the-world/

The other 2 parts of this series here…….

https://consortiumnews.com/2018/02/13/how-intel-for-hire-is-undermining-u-s-intelligence-part-2/

https://consortiumnews.com/2018/02/18/a-crisis-in-intelligence-unthinkable-consequences-of-outsourcing-u-s-intel-part-3/

I agree that this has the potential of being disastrous for our intel establishment…..the leaks in the past have been perpetrated by private contractors of our intel agencies.

The more independent people employed the better the chances of catastrophic damage can be done in turn making the country less safe……

It’s All About National Security

The release of the now infamous memo brings the thought of national security to the forefront…..got me to thinking about when our obsession with NatSec began…..

The beginning of the Cold War and Truman was worried about the expansion of the USSR……1947……

The National Security Act of 1947 mandated a major reorganization of the foreign policy and military establishments of the U.S. Government. The act created many of the institutions that Presidents found useful when formulating and implementing foreign policy, including the National Security Council (NSC).

The act also established the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), which grew out of World War II era Office of Strategic Services and small post-war intelligence organizations. The CIA served as the primary civilian intelligence-gathering organization in the government. Later, the Defense Intelligence Agency became the main military intelligence body. The 1947 law also caused far-reaching changes in the military establishment. The War Department and Navy Department merged into a single Department of Defense under the Secretary of Defense, who also directed the newly created Department of the Air Force. However, each of the three branches maintained their own service secretaries. In 1949 the act was amended to give the Secretary of Defense more power over the individual services and their secretaries.

You now have the back story of the beginning of our NatSec framework….while I agree that it was ma necessity back then I also think that it needs some reformation…..

The year 2017 marked the 70th anniversary of the National Security Act of 1947. To commemorate the landmark legislation that powerfully shaped the American national security enterprise, over 60 prominent scholars, practitioners, and national security experts gathered at the United States Military Academy over the course of two years to consider national security reform in the modern era. In April 2016, the group examined how the world has changed since the end of the Second World War and, building upon those discussions in April 2017, endeavored to develop specific, actionable recommendations for reforming our national security institutions and processes.

https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2018/02/02/national_security_reform_for_a_new_era_113001.html

It is a defense industry solution…..while I may not agree with every word I do believe that it needs to be upgraded for the 21st century.  More weapons will not guarantee more peace.

“I Don’t Need No Stinking Briefing!”

The presidents have daily routine of running this country…..one of the most important is the daily intel briefing this lets the president know what is happening in the world….the situations that will effect the US in one way or another.

Well it seems that Pres. Trump is a lot smarter than he pretends…..he does not want daily briefings because he knows what is happening….why?  He watches FOX News!  (I know I cannot type that without bursting into raucous laughter)……

Donald Trump is the first president since Richard Nixon to not regularly read the President’s Daily Brief—a comprehensive update on the world put together by US intelligence agencies—sources tell the Washington Post, and that has some intelligence experts concerned he’s putting the US at risk. Sources say that within months of Trump taking office, he made it clear he had little interest in the PDB, preferring oral briefings spiced up with graphics, photos, and videos instead. One source says reading full reports is not Trump’s “style of learning,” and the Post notes the president has “a famously short attention span.” Publicly released schedules indicate Trump has been getting these oral intelligence briefings every two or three days.

Former CIA director Leon Panetta and former CIA assistant director Mark Lowenthal say short oral briefings aren’t enough to get a firm grasp on world issues and could put both Trump and the country in danger in the long run. But administration officials defend Trump’s intelligence absorption, with a spokesperson for the National Security Council saying Trump “is an avid consumer of intelligence … and looks forward every day to the give and take of his intelligence briefings.” Sources say Trump asks unique questions during his briefings—like “Why are we even in Somalia?” or “Why can’t I just pull out of Afghanistan?”—but also occasionally brushes off his briefers, complaining they are “talking down to him.” Read the full story here.

This country will eventually regret the routine of this ego-centric toad.  I just hope that when we do that it will not be too costly of a lesson.

Only A Fools Errand

There has been a lot in the news about the now famous or infamous depending on your beliefs and I would like to give my opinion…..

In my younger years I was a member of the US Army CIC counter intelligence……only an idiot would see this as a good thing.

It is about what a single individual wants and not anything about the FISA warrant process.

The saga over whether the White House will or won’t release “the memo” may be over on Friday. Multiple reports—including at Fox News, ABC News, and the Washington Post—say President Trump has read the document and is set to release it. The White House, however, has agreed to make some redactions at the request of the FBI, which strongly came out against the release on Wednesday. Fox describes them as “technical edits,” but it seems the gist of the memo—asserting that the FBI and Justice Department abused their authority in the early stages of the Trump-Russia investigation—would stay intact. The only big question, then, is when the public would be able to read the memo.

ABC lays out the steps: After the White House informs the House Intelligence Committee that it doesn’t object to the memo’s release, the panel would then enter it into the Congressional Record. That step can only take place when the House is in session, which ABC notes would be the case at 4:30pm Friday. Failing that, the House would again be in session on Monday. One last wrinkle: GOP Sen. John Thune on Thursday told reporters that the Senate Intelligence Committee must see the memo before it’s made public. “I think they have to take into consideration what the FBI is saying,” Thune said of House Republicans, referring to the agency’s concerns.

This situation will make the warrant process damn near impossible because our intel people will be afraid that anything they had to get the warrant would later come back as a political football……

Keep in mind that a FISA warrant is used to investigate and prevent a terrorist attack or protect the country from espionage…..so the next attack that could have been prevented and was not will be on the heads of these political pigs that had NO evidence of wrong doing did what they did to assist a single individual and not the country.

It will be released……

The White House on Friday declassified a partisan and bitterly disputed memo on the Russia investigation, clearing the way for House Republicans to release allegations of what they say is FBI misconduct, per the AP. The move came over the fierce objections of the FBI and Justice Department, which have said the document prepared by Republicans on the House intelligence committee is inaccurate and missing critical context. The memo alleges that the FBI abused US government surveillance powers in its investigation into Russian election interference. It wasn’t immediately clear when the House committee would release it.

Trump, who has called the investigation a “witch hunt,” has supported the release of the memo in the apparent hopes that it could help undermine the probe being led by special counsel Robert Mueller. The president, dogged by the unrelenting investigation into his campaign’s ties to Russia, lashed out anew Friday at the FBI and Justice Department as politically biased against Republicans. “The top Leadership and Investigators of the FBI and the Justice Department have politicized the sacred investigative process in favor of Democrats and against Republicans – something which would have been unthinkable just a short time ago. Rank & File are great people!” Trump tweeted.

This is a fools errand that does NOTHING to protect this country from anything….tying the hands of our intel people……remember if there is an attack how we got there and who made it possible.

Trump has pissed up our process and he did it to save his ass….has nothing to do with protecting the country.

But hey…read the memo and try to work it out for yourself…..

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/02/02/full-text-nunes-memo-fbi-transcript-385057

Or you could spend the day believing those scheming toads on FOX…..