Class Notes

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Reading a chapter from 9/11 Commission Report

Chapter 13 – How to do it? A Different Way of Organizing the Government

13.1 – Unity of Effort Across the Foreign-Domestic Divide

  • No one was formally in charge that day
  • Commentary up to the point this was written had been about “lost opportunities”
  • Issue of joint action
    • 2 Reasons
      • the virtue of joint planning
      • the advantage of having someone in charge to ensure a unified effort
  • NSC staff not funded or sized to be an executive agency
    • have many day-day tasks, which makes it difficult for them to advise the President on issues, etc.
    • Solution:
      • Recommendation: We recommend the establishment of a National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), built on the foundation of the existing Terrorist Threat Integration Center (TTIC). Breaking the older mold of national government organization, this NCTC should be a center for joint operational planning and joint intelligence, staffed by personnel from the various agencies. The head of the NCTC should have authority to evaluate the performance of the people assigned to the Center.
    • The NCTC would not eliminate interagency policy disputes. These would still go to the National Security Council.

13.2 – Unity of Effort in the Intelligence Community

  • “Reflect on whether the government is organized adequately to direct resources and build the intelligence capabilities it will need not just for countering terrorism, but for the broader range of national security challenges in the decades ahead.”
  • The CIA, during the Cold War, did not operate as one unit – each sector had its own duty and performed their own ‘mission’ and later reported it after the fact; this worked
  • 6 problems have occurred before/because of 9/11, so they want to find a solution to these
    • “The current DCI is responsible for community performance but lacks the three authorities critical for any agency head or chief executive officer: (1) control over purse strings, (2) the ability to hire or fire senior managers, and (3) the ability to set standards for the information infrastructure and personnel.
      • Recommendation: The current position of Director of Central Intelligence should be replaced by a National Intelligence Director with two main areas of responsibility: (1) to oversee national intelligence centers on specific subjects of interest across the U.S. government and (2) to manage the national intelligence program and oversee the agencies that contribute to it.
      • The National Intelligence Director would retain the present DCI’s role as the principal intelligence adviser to the president.
      • The National Intelligence Director would manage this national effort with the help of three deputies, each of whom would also hold a key position in one of the component agencies.
        • Would also be located in the Executive Office of the President
      • Recommendation: The CIA Director should emphasize (a) rebuilding the CIA’s analytic capabilities; (b) transforming the clandestine service by building its human intelligence capabilities; (c) developing a stronger language program, with high standards and sufficient financial incentives; (d) renewing emphasis on recruiting diversity among operations officers so they can blend more easily in foreign cities; (e) ensuring a seamless relationship between human source collection and signals collection at the operational level; and (f) stressing a better balance between unilateral and liaison operations.
      • Recommendation: Lead responsibility for directing and executing paramilitary operations, whether clandestine or covert, should shift to the Defense Department. There it should be consolidated with the capabilities for training, direction, and execution of such operations already being developed in the Special Operations Command.

13.3 – Information Sharing

  • U.S. government has access to a lot of information
  • “Current security requirements nurture overclassification and excessive compartmentation of information among agencies.”
    • Recommendation: Information procedures should provide incentives for sharing, to restore a better balance between security and shared knowledge.

13.4 – Unity of Effort in the Congress

  • Want to strengthen congressional oversight
  • Worry that U.S. won’t have the security it needs if congress continues to operate in its current ways
  • Overall goal: structure
    • Recommendation: Congressional oversight for intelligence-and counterterrorism-is now dysfunctional. Congress should address this problem. We have considered various alternatives: A joint committee on the old model of the Joint Committee on Atomic Energy is one. A single committee in each house of Congress, combining authorizing and appropriating authorities, is another.
    • Recommendation: Congress should create a single, principal point of oversight and review for homeland security. Congressional leaders are best able to judge what committee should have jurisdiction over this department and its duties. But we believe that Congress does have the obligation to choose one in the House and one in the Senate, and that this committee should be a permanent standing committee with a nonpartisan staff.
    • Recommendation: Since a catastrophic attack could occur with little or no notice, we should minimize as much as possible the disruption of national security policymaking during the change of administrations by accelerating the process for national security appointments. We think the process could be improved significantly so transitions can work more effectively and allow new officials to assume their new responsibilities as quickly as possible.

13.5 – Organizing America’s Defenses in the United States

  • Future role of FBI discussed
    • “concern about the FBI is that it has long favored its criminal justice mission over its national security mission”
    • They do not recommend creation of a new domestic intelligence agency
      • Recommendation: A specialized and integrated national security workforce should be established at the FBI consisting of agents, analysts, linguists, and surveillance specialists who are recruited, trained, rewarded, and retained to ensure the development of an institutional culture imbued with a deep expertise in intelligence and national security.
    • FBI is one part of the national law enforcement community in U.S.




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