Tag Archives | Intelligence Agencies

The “Rot” Rots On

Titan II MissileAt what point does an organization “rot?”

“Rot” seems to be a new phrase du jour being used by the military in the case of several offices charged with mishandling the highly sensitive and uber-responsible job of operating our top-secret nuclear weapons systems. They are the people who literally have their fingers on the big boom button.

According to a Guardian report, here’s how this rot came to public attention.

“The US Air Force has stripped an unprecedented 17 officers of their authority to oversee nuclear missiles, after a string of failings that the group’s deputy commander said stemmed from ‘rot’ within the ranks.”

“Rot within the ranks!”  That’s a neat way of putting it. Is that rot just confined to the underground silos on the lonely plains below their “amber waves of grain?”

Could there be mental “rot” in the intelligence world that we know is usually anything but intelligent?… Read the rest

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‘The Activity’ Comic Reveals Secrets of US Army’s Intelligence Support Activity Unit

Have you ever heard of the US Army’s Intelligence Support Activity unit? Not many people have, and there’s not much written about it. Surprisingly one of the best sources is in a comic, as reported by ABC News:

In a dark corner of American special operations there exists, alongside the Army’s Delta Force and the Navy’s Osama bin Laden-killing SEAL Team Six, a small unit of Army spies known as the Intelligence Support Activity.

Created more than 30 years ago, the ISA has had its hand in almost every high-profile American special operation around the world in recent history, and countless others, according to published reports and special operations veterans with firsthand knowledge of the group.

And though relatively little is known about the secret unit — the military still refuses to acknowledge its existence — a new, colorful picture of the group has emerged through, of all things, a comic book.

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Former Project Bluebook Spokesman: Government Covering up UFO Details

Picture: Public Domain

Ironies upon ironies: During a public appearance at the National Atomic Testing Museum retired Air Force Col. Charles Halt, a former spokesman for the Air Force’s now defunct UFO “investigation” arm, Project Blue Book”, stated that the government is engaged in a cover-up regarding the existence of UFOs:

“Folks, there is an agency, a very close-held, compartmentalized agency that’s been investigating this for years, and there’s a very active role played by many of our intelligence agencies that probably don’t even know the details of what happens once they collect the data and forward it. It’s kind of scary, isn’t it?

“In the last couple of years, the British have released a ton of information, but has anybody ever seen what their conclusions were or heard anything about Bentwaters officially? When the documents were released, the timeframe when I was involved in the incident is missing — it’s gone missing.

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The Ignorance of ‘Intelligence’

Some years ago, I met a major in American intelligence, a member of the “Red Cell Unit.”

As he explained it to me, his unit was actually charged with assessing other spy shops by offering other views, critiquing intelligence estimates and perhaps even evaluating security systems like the specialists who test airport systems by probing for their soft spots and vulnerabilities, and seeing if they can beat them.

This soldier had been sent as one more gung-ho officer into the war in Iraq only to return, like many, if not disillusioned, aware that all was not working well. He was actually involved in guarding so called HVP’s (High Value Prisoners) including Saddam Hussein himself, who he came to respect for his intelligence before his untimely demise with a rope around his neck.

Saddam’s many crimes and errors were often dwarfed by our own.

The United States today has a vast intelligence apparatus, on the ground, in the sky and even in space.… Read the rest

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CIA Allowed to Sustain Cover-Up of the Full ‘Bay of Pigs’ History

Bay of PigsVia the National Security Archive at George Washington University:

More than year after the National Security Archive sued the CIA to declassify the full “Official History of the Bay of Pigs Operation,” a U.S. District Court judge today sided with the Agency’s efforts to keep the last volume of the report secret in perpetuity. In her ruling, Judge Gladys Kessler accepted the CIA’s legal arguments that, because Volume V was a “draft” and never officially approved for inclusion in the Agency’s official history, it was exempt from declassification under the “deliberative process privilege” despite having been written over 30 years ago.

The National Security Archive called the decision “a regrettable blow to the right-to-know” and vowed to press the Obama administration to force the CIA to adhere to the President’s Executive Order 13526 that “no information shall remain classified indefinitely.”

The volume, titled “CIA’s Internal Investigations of the Bay of Pigs Operations,” was written by CIA historian Jack Pfeiffer in 1981.

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Banks Cooperating With Each Other and Police to Track Occupy Protesters

BankstersMax Abelson reports in the San Francisco Chronicle:

The world’s biggest banks are working with one another and police to gather intelligence as protesters try to rejuvenate the Occupy Wall Street movement with May demonstrations, industry security consultants aid.

Among 99 protest targets in midtown Manhattan on Tuesday are JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America offices, said Marisa Holmes, a member of Occupy’s May Day planning committee.

Events are scheduled in more than 115 cities, including an effort to shut down the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, where Wells Fargo investors relied on police to get past protests at their annual meeting this week. “Our goal is to kick off the spring offensive and go directly to where the financial elite play and plan,” she said.

After evictions and arrests from Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park to London that began last year, the movement against income inequality and corporate abuse will regain strength, said Brian McNary, director of global risk at Pinkerton Consulting & Investigations.

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Defense Clandestine Service: Yet Another U.S. Spy Agency

PentagonDo we really need to add to CIA, NSA, DIA, et al? Greg Miller reports for the Washington Post:

The Pentagon is planning to ramp up its spying operations against high-priority targets such as Iran under an intelligence reorganization aimed at expanding on the military’s espionage efforts beyond war zones, a senior defense official said Monday.

The newly created Defense Clandestine Service would work closely with the CIA — pairing two organizations that have often seen each other as rivals — in an effort to bolster espionage operations overseas at a time when the missions of the agency and the military increasingly converge.

The plan, the official said, was developed in response to a classified study completed last year by the director of national intelligence that concluded that the military’s espionage efforts needed to be more focused on major targets beyond the tactical considerations of Iraq and Afghanistan.

The new service will seek to “make sure officers are in the right locations to pursue those requirements,” said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the “realignment” of the military’s classified human espionage efforts…

[continues at the Washington Post]

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State-Sponsored Counter-Terror Tactics?

Riverdale Jewish CenterAs we count down to the impending “credible terror threat” it is important to take a real look at the nature of many of the planned terror attacks in the USA. Gordon Corera takes an eye opening look at an interesting source of terror in the homeland for the BBC:

In May 2009 David Williams was keeping watch at the corner of 246th Street and Independence Avenue in the Bronx, New York — the look out for a terror group aiming to blow up a building nearby. The target was the Riverdale Jewish Center where the terror cell’s leader, James Cromitie, was planting what he believed to be two devices containing C-4 plastic explosive.

Having completed their task, the four man team planned to then head back to their hometown of Newburgh, a run-down town 60 miles (97km) north of New York City, where they intended to use a surface-to-air missile to take down a military plane at the Stewart Air National Guard Base.

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Former U.S. Intelligence Chief Calls For End Of Drone War

Noah Schachtman of Wired reports on some subversive thoughts expressed by former Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair (thanks to Liam P for submitting this story):
ASPEN, Colorado — Ground the U.S. drone war in Pakistan. Rethink the idea of spending billions of dollars to pursue al-Qaida. Forget chasing terrorists in Yemen and Somalia, unless the local governments are willing to join in the hunt. Those aren’t the words of some human rights activist, or some far-left Congressman. They’re from retired admiral and former Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair — the man who was, until recently, nominally in charge of the entire American effort to find, track, and take out terrorists...
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Secret CIA Prisons And Counterterrorism Sites In Somalia

CIASomaliaThere has been news recently of CIA operated secret prisons in Somalia, as well as sites with counterterrorism training for Somali intelligence agencies. Have these secret sites been funded by US tax payers? Via AlterNet:

Nestled in a back corner of Mogadishu’s Aden Adde International Airport is a sprawling walled compound run by the Central Intelligence Agency. Set on the coast of the Indian Ocean, the facility looks like a small gated community, with more than a dozen buildings behind large protective walls and secured by guard towers at each of its four corners. Adjacent to the compound are eight large metal hangars, and the CIA has its own aircraft at the airport. The site, which airport officials and Somali intelligence sources say was completed four months ago, is guarded by Somali soldiers, but the Americans control access. At the facility, the CIA runs a counterterrorism training program for Somali intelligence agents and operatives aimed at building an indigenous strike force capable of snatch operations and targeted “combat” operations against members of Al Shabab, an Islamic militant group with close ties to Al Qaeda.

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