Support to National Policy

We're on a mission to say to the rest of the world, come with us—come with us, stand by our side to defeat the evildoers of freedom, as we know it.

President George W. Bush,
Address to the Intelligence Community, George Bush Center for Intelligence,
26 September 2001

Support to national policy includes: daily briefings to the President, his senior advisors, and his Cabinet members; ad hoc situation reports throughout the day on late-breaking events; and long-term strategic analyses in the form of National Intelligence Estimates as well as other long-term analyses produced by the National Intelligence Council with input from IC-wide analytic organizations. Examples of such analyses include: the foreign ballistic missile threat to the United States; challenges to monitoring conventional weapons treaties; implications of tensions between India and Pakistan; and growing global migration and its implications for the United States. Daily reporting on a wide variety of national intelligence issues is distributed through the Senior Executive Intelligence Brief, which is produced by CIA with support from other analytic production agencies. 

The Intelligence Community's Support to National Policy mission contains six components:  Strategic Warning, Diplomacy, Arms Control and Treaty Monitoring, Combating Proliferation, Promoting Trade and Economic Security, and Promoting Civil and Environmental Stability. 


Strategic Warning

The Intelligence Community warns senior officials of changing threats to the United States, potential attacks against the United States and its interests around the world, impending actions against our allies, and other foreign crises.  By providing strategic warning that is both persuasive and timely, the Community tries to give the decisionmaker and military commander enough time to either avert a crisis or be prepared to effectively deal with it.  Over the past year, IC analysts supported policymakers on such issues as terrorism; global and regional, political, economic, and military concerns; the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD); and narcotrafficking. 

During FY 2001 the Intelligence Community supported the strategic warning mission area by provided the following:

  • In-depth intelligence support to the in-coming Administration, such as customized daily intelligence reporting to the new President and his senior national security advisers.
  • Wide-ranging, substantive intelligence briefings to Congressional Committees of both Houses as well as individual Members of Congress.
  • Detailed and timely coverage of events on the downing of the P-3 in China and the surrounding diplomatic efforts to secure the return of the American military personnel involved in the incident.
  • Strategic warning of terrorist threats to the United States, our allies, and other interests around the world. 
    • Over the years the Intelligence Community has provided consistent reporting and warning on possible terrorist attacks against the United States and its interests abroad. Prior to the attacks against the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, warnings of unspecified attacks were provided to senior policymakers through daily reporting.
    • In the aftermath of the 11 September attacks, Community analysts frequently briefed senior Administration and Congressional officials on immediate developments. The Community also provided long-range strategic assessments, current intelligence briefs, and operational support to consumers involved in the conduct of foreign policy, military actions, law enforcement, and homeland security. 
  • Timely intelligence and expert analysis on developments relating to strategic warning for the Secretary of State, our ambassadors abroad, and senior Department of State officers. 
  • Comprehensive coverage of threats to our deployed military forces abroad and analysis on key developments in the areas of responsibilities of our military commanders.
  • Critical information on indications and warning of foreign threats and intentions of foreign states with respect to political, economic, social, and environmental issues.

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The Intelligence Community's support to US diplomatic efforts is quite broad. It uses its in-depth knowledge of countries and regions to aid international negotiations of all kinds and help US negotiators to understand whether and how their agreements can be verified and monitored. For example, in April 2001, the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR, which is an element of the Intelligence Community) coordinated a Community effort in support of the Key West peace talks on Nagorno-Karabakh. Secretary Powell personally opened the negotiations between Armenian President Kocharian and Azerbaijani President Aliyev. INR and NIMA worked closely to prepare a menu of computerized mapping options as well as a video fly-through of the area.  (See figure 1.) 

The Intelligence Community provides our diplomatic corps with invaluable information on negotiating approaches and tactics. 

Figure 1—Preventing Conflict: Key West Talks on Nagorno-Karabakh

The IC developed its Support to Diplomacy Plan to help focus and guide our activities.  Other efforts in this mission area include:

  • The production by the National Intelligence Council in December 2000 of a special unclassified publication, Global Trends 2015: A Dialogue About the Future With Nongovernment Experts.
    • The report, which was based on extensive consultation with nongovernment experts, outlined key drivers that will affect the world in the year 2015:  demographic trends, natural resources and the environment, science and technology, the global economy and globalization, national and international governance, the changing nature of future conflict, and the role of the United States. 
    • The Global Trends study received widespread international attention and prompted discussions between foreign government officials and US government officials on ways to approach the challenges and opportunities outlined in the report.
  • INR organized and conducted 101 conferences in FY 2001 on topics of foreign policy interest.  The conferences brought together 800 speakers and close to 5,000 attendees from across the government.  This service provides important outreach and incorporates outside expertise into the Intelligence Community from the academic and other nongovernment communities. 
  • An interagency effort spearheaded by INR developed and provided a comprehensive geographical information system for agencies involved in relief and reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan.
  • The Joint Intelligence Center of the US Pacific Command (JICPAC) provided comprehensive intelligence to US policymakers during the presidential transition in Indonesia.  Throughout the past year, JICPAC analysts continued to provide tailored intelligence to UN-sponsored Australian-led peace enforcement operations in East Timor.
  • CIA analysts produced detailed intelligence on foreign nations' attitudes about the impact of the US intention to build a new strategic framework that included a missile defense.  Analysts provided frequent support to policymakers to help them identify the positions of foreign nations and place them in context.
  • DIA's support to senior Defense policymakers was instrumental in shaping US policy during the transition of the new Administration and in supporting preparations for Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. 

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Arms Control and Treaty Monitoring

The Intelligence Community analyzed the programs and plans of declared or threshold nuclear weapons states regarding development, maintenance, and operational capabilities of strategic weapons and delivery systems.  We also monitored compliance with bilateral and multilateral treaties and conventions to which the United States is party, including START, the Non-Proliferation Treaty, and the Biological Weapons Convention.  The Community also provided policymakers with all-source analyses on transfers of advanced conventional weapons and technologies and on arms control agreements.  In particular:

  • INR provided in-depth analytic support for arms control and proliferation talks with Russia.
  • CIA supported the efforts of various agencies to help form a new strategy for curtailing nuclear, missile, and conventional arms cooperation among countries presenting threats.
  • DIA performed assessments of weapons stockpiles in specific foreign nations that provided significant new insight into arms transfers and their potential use by terrorists. 

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Combating Proliferation

The Intelligence Community carefully monitored foreign entities that continued to provide other countries with technology and expertise applicable to chemical, biological, nuclear, and ballistic and cruise missile projects as well as key foreign suppliers of missile-related technologies.  We also provided expertise and analyses that were used by US officials to monitor Iraqi compliance with UN Security Council resolutions, assess the military impact of satellite technology transfers, and support nonproliferation negotiations with North Korea.  In addition to these efforts, particular agencies performed the following:

  • DIA led the Defense Intelligence Community's portal efforts.  Their on-line "information space" provided focused timely intelligence on nuclear, biological, chemical, and radiological weapons, affording DoD customers seamless access to vital intelligence topics. 
  • INR supported senior Department of State policy officials with analyses on the development of weapons of mass destruction.  In addition, INR coordinated the IC's cleared use of intelligence for diplomatic demarches to combat proliferation.
  • DOE performed detailed analyses of the potential of weapons-related proliferations and environmental threats posed by foreign naval energy sources.
  • CIA analysts supported US efforts to work with Moscow to curb arms technology transfers to threat nations.

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Promoting Economic Security

  • The NIC, as part of its continuing effort to highlight the implications for the United States of transnational trends, produced a National Intelligence Estimate on the economic and political impact of growing global migration patterns.  This Estimate was a more detailed follow-on study to Global Trends 2015, which identified migration as one of several key drivers of the changing security environment.
  • The NIC highlighted for policymakers over the last year the growing economic weaknesses in key countries.  Working with IC analysts and outside experts, NIC Estimates and other papers identified key risks for these countries and addressed policymaker concerns about the potential broader impact.
  • CIA's Office of Transnational Issues as well as the Strategic Assessments Group kept policymakers apprised of the outlook for the global economy, potential financial crises, threats to food security, and energy developments.
  • INR provided policymakers detailed assessments on country views and negotiating postures on outstanding trade issues in the WTO, particularly concerning the establishment of a new round of trade negotiations and accession of new members to the WTO as well as on a variety of bilateral trade disputes.

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Promoting Civil and Environmental Stability

  • Agencies provided policymakers with analyses of issues such as humanitarian relief, refugees, environmental change, and human rights.
  • The NIC published a special unclassified report, Global Humanitarian Emergencies: Trends and Projections, 2001-2002 , which assessed the prospects for ongoing humanitarian emergencies resulting from manmade causes and major natural disasters and the likelihood of new emergencies. The report enabled policymakers and military planners to prepare to respond to calls for US humanitarian assistance throughout the world.
  • The NIC highlighted key dynamics in the US war on terrorism in the immediate aftermath of 11 September regarding the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan as well as the political dynamics within the United Nations.  The NIC, in collaboration with Community partners, pulled together experts on Afghanistan from within the Intelligence Community and beyond to assess the key aid gaps and the capacity for the UN, NGOs, and key states to respond.
  • INR continued to produce the highly regarded Environment and Sustainable Development Review for US policymakers. 
  • Various agencies continued to provide information to support the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia.  This information has contributed directly to indictments and prosecutions, including the conviction of General Krstic for genocide in connection with the events in Srebrenicia. 
  • NIMA and the Department of State joined forces to provide geospatial and imagery data for humanitarian relief projects. 
  • In response to the Philippine Presidential crisis on 19 January, FBIS maintained extended coverage of the Philippines throughout the next few days until former President Estrada peacefully stepped down and Vice President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was sworn in.
  • In supporting other national needs, NIMA was successful in finding the missing NASA MARS Polar Lander (MPL) on Mars.  NASA requested NIMA's involvement after communications with the MPL could not be re-established following its entry into the Martian atmosphere.  NIMA's painstaking analysis of the MPL landing area, covering 667 kilometers, resulted in the MPL being found.

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Posted: May 01, 2007 06:35 PM
Last Updated: Jan 03, 2012 12:53 PM