Thursday, January 12, 2006

Where’s Waldo? I Could Tell You, But Then I Would Have To Kill You

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Yes, it’s me again, “shilling” for the Intelligence Community, or more accurately explaining some of the roles of and distinctions between the different agencies and offices in the Intelligence Community (IC). The Aluminati will claim it’s all conspiracy of course, but the actual separation of duties and roles for each agency is important to seeing the mosaic which is U.S. National Security. I have already discussed the CIA, NSA, and FBI, although barely touching the surface of each. Today, I examine one of the more obscure agencies, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).

From its name, one would suspect that the DIA performs a military version of the functions done by the CIA, but that is not exactly correct. The DIA is a manager of information for the military, but where the CIA uses its agents to collect information and analyzes that for decisions by the Executive Branch, the DIA receives military intelligence and disseminates it to the men in the field.

The DIA was created in 1961, and enjoys the distinction of being the first agency to conclusively determine the existence of Soviet missile launch pads on the island of Cuba in 1962.

This parsing of information may seem small matters to people obsessed with our collection efforts, but analysis is the key to making use of any information. As important as it is to gain the clues to what our enemies intend, we must have capable analysts who can not only determine the likely intentions of our foes, but offer useful information to the men who must prevent those intentions.

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