Blogs

15 June 2021

Professional Warning People

by :

Excerpt:

Warning intelligence is a function of the intelligence community that manifests in different ways, but at its best tends to come about as a small and senior team filled with experienced professionals with the ears of decision makers. The problem is, that while this structure emerges with some frequency (the CIA’s National Intelligence Officer for Warning, or NIO/W is an example of this), these offices tend to pretty quickly get a reputation for crying wolf.

9/11 tends to be the most widely known failure in warning intelligence that many think of — a coordinated strike on American domestic targets, both civilian and military, by a well established terrorist network, whose rhetoric and actions forwarding a religiously-framed war against the United States were known to the American IC. But actually, you could argue this wasn’t a failure in warning intelligence — whose purview fits the six month to several year timeline according to one of its great practitioners and thinkers, Cynthia Grabo — but rather a failure in tactical intelligence and interagency coordination…

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