The next threat” is the biggest worry facing the U.S. intelligence community, according to its director. While terrorism is the current primary threat facing the security of the Free World, the purveyors of terrorism might take new approaches to tactics and procedures that would change the nature of their threat—and the type of damage that they could inflict on an innocent populace. The same players would be doing harm, but they would be striking in entirely different ways—and they might be joining forces with others to pursue their agenda of destruction.
Recognizing that the Global War on Terrorism covers many distinct areas of the world, the U.S. Army is expanding its intelligence databases by adding regional analysis capabilities for its areas of operation. This information will be stored in distributed data warehouses that allow analysts to access and share actionable intelligence to support forces in theater. Army intelligence brigades will use these tools to store and study data before providing it to deployed forces.
The United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence is integrating all of its intelligence and reconnaissance platforms and systems into a single architecture capable of providing 24-hour battlefield surveillance. The effort also will provide a means of distributing and disseminating collected data to warfighters down to the tactical level.
The intelligence community is breaking down boundaries—geographic and policy—in an effort to transform itself for the 21st century. As a new wave of personnel demands more information more rapidly, operations are becoming more federated, and the way agencies view their relationships with each other and foreign countries is adapting.
The intelligence community’s one-year-old Intellipedia already is paying benefits to its users, according to Central Intelligence Agency officials. However, a majority of the community remains unfamiliar with its benefits and uncomfortable with its use.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence has created an organization that will increase the speed of technical developments and infuse synergy into the intelligence agencies so they can recapture their ability to surprise adversaries. The activity merges the efforts and expertise of three intelligence organizations and takes aim at the process problems that crept into the agencies during the past few years. Among the technical targets will be ways to improve knowledge in the social sciences, neural sciences, biology and nanotechnology.
A language analysis system is making it easier for intelligence organizations to identify and track suspicious conversations on military and civilian voice communications networks. The technology identifies keywords in a target language and also can be triggered by a specific regional accent.
The U.S. Department of Defense Intelligence Information System has completed phase one of a multiyear effort to transform into a more agile enterprise. This global information technology enterprise, led by the Defense Intelligence Agency, serves both analysts and warfighters and provides the backbone of intelligence technology for the Defense Department, combatant commands, the services and many other elements of the national security community. The transformation effort has enhanced the ability of the entire defense intelligence enterprise to serve the mission needs of the military.
New collection and storage technologies, along with the need for greater collaboration across the intelligence community, are changing the nature of intelligence analysis. But obstacles that stand in the way of that change could prevent intelligence analysis from achieving its full—and necessary—potential to serve national requirements in the Global War on Terrorism.
The U.S. Air Force is reorganizing its intelligence community to connect the dots before moving information to the decision maker and the warfighter. The ongoing reorganization is eliminating bureaucratic layers and improving communication among diverse elements responsible for designing and delivering intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities.