Communications and Intelligence
Washington, DC Feb. 4th, 2007 ---- The basic concept of intelligence gathering is that you intercept communication between Transmitter A and Receiver B. If Transmitter A keeps his information to himself then there can't be any intelligence gathering opportunity. That requires knowledge of the Transmitter, the Receiver and the method and time of the communication.
This concept has been forgotten by the majority in the Bush Administration. They start from the intelligence they require to fit their political scenario, and work backwards like a blind man hoping to find gold nuggets in a minefield.
The successful intelligence operations over the last thousand years took time and dedication towards a clearly defined goal. This works best with continuous political leadership, and strong and experienced leaders. The United States unfortunately flip flops between political leaders at all levels, with few having any international experience, understanding of the communication process, or the players. This is certainly true of anyone speaking anything else beside English and Spanish. For most politicians learn Spanish to pander to the voters, but can't even point to the area of the world for most other languages are spoken. Bush and his Cabinet are classic examples of the Blind leading the Blind. His experience of global travel before he occupied the White House was to Mexican Cantinas.
The collection of intelligence must also be appropriate to the form of communication. Word of mouth through trusted runners has been used for tens of thousands of years. It's slow, but with modern transportation still effective. The response to Bin Laden using trusted messengers as his channels of secure communication is more billion dollar electronic eavesdropping satellites and ground intercept facilities, and thousands more Agency and Contractor employees to play with this expensive technology. A Goat Herder watching Bin Laden's "Cave" is out of the question, because the Bush Defense Contractor Club would lose all those billions of dollars of taxpayer money. But it takes time to teach a CIA operative to become a Goat Herder and Bush will have moved on to another enemy, in another country by that time.
The whole US intelligence machine is doomed to lumber from one Intelligence Failure to another because it has long forgotten the basics, and because of the Security Clearance trap will never regain that knowledge. The opposition on the other hand has realized that this mighty invincible military machine is backed by Marshmallow leadership. It's a bit like in the Star Wars Return of the Jedi film, where the mighty walking gun platforms can be tripped up with ropes and logs.
The best example of this is the Israeli defeat in their invasion of Lebanon. The IDF hadn't a clue about the tens of thousands of rockets pointing at them, the bunkers and the extent of the supply and training of Hezbollah. On the other hand the highly sophisticated communication, command and control networks of the IDF had been breached by Hezbollah. They knew every move in advance. A replay of the German Enigma story.
The hair brained invasion of Iraq is another global disaster by amateur Texas Marshmallows. How anyone who understands the historical basis of the Middle East would have expected anything other that the total breakup of the country of Iraq following the removal of the Dictator Saddam Hussein is beyond belief. The future was signaled by Saddam many times, and the US had video of his statements that showed the planning of the "Insurgency". But we were far too occupied in playing with expensive satellite eavesdropping equipment to listen to the people in the room.
But looking at the whole picture, including "Off the Record" conversations with government and private intelligence analysts, it appears that the entire US communication process was sabotaged for political reasons, by political operatives with their own agenda. Unfortunately these Bush politicos whilst being brilliant at manipulating the US political and election process, hadn't a clue about the rest of the world. They extended their corruption beyond their ability to manage the communication and intelligence process. Finding an information void they reverted to fabricating the missing intelligence from the sort of communications they expected to hear, to carry out their plan. In other word they made it all up to fool the voters and grab the assets they wanted!
History will look back at this period as a massive Intelligence Failure caused by corrupted Communications, manipulated to create a political scenario.
In the meantime Osama Bin Laden, the most wanted man alive since 2001 continues to send his message around the world communicating to a growing army of followers, and the United States continues to build new intelligence centers and staff them with thousands of contractors to utilize the billions of dollars of technology that can listen to every whisper of the Soviet Union. (not a typo!)
And the Goat Herder watching Bin Laden in his cave? The US military misidentified him as a target, bombed him as part of their Friendly Fire Program, and blew him into a million pieces in a grand show of "Shock and Awe". Bin Laden turned to his trusted messengers and is alleged to have said, "That was Close". That statement was reported by a Pakistani reporter there doing an interview with Bin Laden, the $42,000,000,000 US Intelligence community missed it because they were lost, searching the satellite phone frequencies to find Bin Laden's number.
Sometimes it is good to look at basics and think.