News & Information

 

CSI Director Remarks to JMIC Conference

Remarks By Lloyd Salvetti, Director,
Center for the Study of Intelligence to the
JMIC Conference at the Defense Intelligence Agency

June 18, 1999

 


Thank you Ann.

 

A colleague told me that speaking here in the JMIC auditorium reminded him of the Dienbienphu school of architecture--"place the speaker on the low ground and fire down on him." Standing here, I understand the comparison.

Before we get started I'd like to poll you with the following question: How many of you were teaching an intelligence course in 1990? 1995? Today? We are making progress but we have still some distance to go, in my view.

We have had a full morning of presentations and discussion. General Wilson's remarks on his career and experience in teaching intelligence created an excellent foundation for the conference and the agenda for this afternoon promises to be stimulating as well. I hope to contribute to the dialogue.

I want to compliment Denis Clift, President of the Joint Military Intelligence College, for organizing this event. The last conference of this sort--of which I am aware--occurred in 1993 and was sponsored by the institution I represent, CIA's Center for the Study of Intelligence. I think we ought to have such a conference about every five years to take a measure of how we are doing and what we must to do to enhance this particular niche of academic research, writing and teaching.

I know that we have participants from several nations at this conference. They enrich the quality of the dialogue on teaching intelligence for all of us. We need to increase the representation of foreign scholars and teachers at these conferences. Debate, discussion, research, and writing on the history, practice, and the proper role of intelligence in a democracy should be promoted in every way possible. To underscore this point, we practitioners in this country need to heed the words of former Director of Central Intelligence, the late William Colby who, in his 1978 memoir, Honorable Men, wrote:

"Whatever may have been the tradition of the past, it is essential that the relationship of the people to our intelligence apparatus be redefined and made appropriate for modern America. Intelligence must accept the end of its special status in the American government and take on the task of informing the public of its nature and its activities as any other department or agency. The public must be informed of what intelligence is doing in its name and how this contributes to the general welfare of the nation."

I believe the intent of his reflection on the importance of communicating to the American public the purpose and role of intelligence in the American system of government applies to the need to foster and support the teaching of intelligence at U.S. academic institutions. Moreover, we ought to promote and support the debate, discussion, research, and writing on the history, practice, and the proper role of intelligence in a democracy in other countries. Inviting foreign scholars and representatives of foreign governments to conferences of this sort is an important step in that direction. We in the Center for the Study of Intelligence welcome opportunities to support and collaborate with academic institutions and think tanks in the U.S. and overseas interested in sponsoring such conferences.

Now, let us turn to the topic of promoting the teaching of intelligence. I'd like to begin by telling you something about myself and the organization I head, the Center for the Study of Intelligence. It is important that you know who we are and what we do, because in a few minutes, I'm going to make you an offer I hope you'll find too good to pass up.

As you have heard, I am a practitioner of the craft of intelligence, having served in positions ranging from intelligence collector to intelligence analyst to intelligence consumer. I am a career operations officer who took over the helm at the Center for the Study of Intelligence in October of last year. I have served in the US and overseas, in a variety of senior management positions in CIA and in policy support positions. My practitioner experience has been in two areas: intelligence collection operations and covert action--the latter including the design and operational control of some of the larger covert action programs of the Reagan years and in managing the policy process for covert action in President Bush's NSC. I have taught and continue to teach intelligence at the National War College and I have lectured on intelligence at various universities. It is from that perspective that I welcome the opportunity to discuss teaching the American system of intelligence with you.

Before I do that, however, I would like to acquaint you with CSI in the hope that we can become a resource for those of you teaching about the craft of intelligence. For those of you unfamiliar with CSI, we are essentially the Agency's "think tank" on intelligence issues. In this capacity:

  • We produce the classified and unclassified history of CIA--the CIA History Staff is in CSI;
  • We support the State Department's production of the Foreign Relations of the United States volumes;
  • We sponsor and conduct classified and unclassified research on intelligence programs and activities by active duty and retired Agency officers;
  • We publish Studies in Intelligence--the journal of record of the intelligence profession;
  • We write and publish books and monographs;
  • We host conferences and symposia; and,
  • We coordinate several academic outreach programs and activities.

I hope some of you are familiar with our recent work. Let me cite a few examples:

  • Last September, CSI hosted, in collaboration with the US Air Force, the National Reconnaissance Office, and three firms (Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and Kodak) a very successful conference on the past, present and future of the U-2 program. As part of the conference, we published The CIA and the U-2 Program, 1954-1974, the CIA's now-declassified internal history of the U-2 program. It is the only history of the program based upon both full access to CIA records and extensive classified interviews with many of its participants.
  • In 1996, we organized, in cooperation with the National Security Agency, the Venona Conference and published concomitantly the volume, Venona: Soviet Espionage and the American Response, 1939-1957. As you know, Venona was the codeword for the program that sought to read and exploit Soviet intelligence messages collected in the 1940s. The book contains important declassified US Government documents outlining the US response to Soviet espionage, as well as 99 of the most significant and revealing Soviet messages translated by Western analysts.

This year we are sponsoring two additional conferences:

  • In September, we will collaborate with the German Allied Museum on our first overseas conference, to be held in Berlin. The conference, entitled Berlin: The Intelligence War (1946-1961), will bring together Cold War intelligence veterans from both sides of the Iron Curtain, academics, and authors to discuss the intelligence dimensions of some of the pivotal events of the early Cold War, from the Berlin Blockade to the famous tank standoff at Checkpoint Charlie in 1961.
  • We also have begun organizing for a conference in November of this year in collaboration with the George Bush School of Government and Public Service and the Center for Presidential Studies at Texas A & M University on the Role of Intelligence in the End of the Cold War. President George Bush will participate in several events at the conference as will former Secretary of State James Baker, former Secretary of Defense Richard Cheney, former Advisor to the President for National Security Affairs Brent Scowcroft and former DCI Judge William Webster. Former DCI and Assistant to the President Bob Gates will be the keynote speaker. For release at the conference, we are preparing a collection of declassified National Intelligence Estimates on the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe that were written during the closing months of the Cold War and the collapse of Communism in the Soviet Union.

Let me also mention some of the books our Center has recently published:

  • Earlier this year, The Society for History in the Federal Government bestowed one of its most prestigious awards, the George Pendleton Prize for the best major manuscript on a US Government program, on a book CSI published: CIA and the Vietnam Policymakers by Hal Ford. The book is a candid and scholarly account of how the US Intelligence Community, particularly the CIA, provided wartime intelligence support to the Kennedy and Johnson Administrations-and how US policymakers, at times, brought great pressure to bear on analysts to treat controversial aspects of the problem in ways more favorable to Administration war aims. More often than not the CIA got it right in Vietnam.
  • Our newest book is by Doug MacEachin, a former CIA Deputy Director for Intelligence, who has written: The Final Months of the War with Japan: Signals Intelligence, U.S. Invasion Planning, and the A-Bomb Decision. This book uses newly-discovered, declassified SIGINT to show that the Japanese were dramatically expanding their defensive forces in the area chosen as the invasion point on the Japanese home islands by U.S. planners, thereby likely ensuring heavy U.S. casualties if an invasion had taken place.
  • Let me also say a word about our journal. Studies in Intelligence is a publication with which I hope you are familiar. It has been published since 1955, but the first unclassified edition did not appear until 1992. The publication is the United States Government's journal of the intelligence profession. Our objective in publishing Studies in Intelligence is to capture historical, operational, or doctrinal aspects of intelligence for students of the intelligence profession (the unclassified edition) and for practitioners (the classified edition). I believe the journal can be a valuable resource for teachers and students about various intelligence issues. For example, the latest unclassified issue addresses such subjects as:
    • An article entitled: "Calling the Sino-Soviet Split, The CIA and Double Demonology," which chronicles the debate within the intelligence community on the nature of the Sino-Soviet relationship up to 1963, by which time the estrangement between Moscow and Beijing had become public.
    • An article proposing a new doctrine in reconnaissance operations entitled: "Planning Satellite Reconnaissance to Support Military Operations."

All of these materials and more are available to you as intelligence scholars. I have brought copies of the latest issue of the unclassified Studies and other unclassified materials published by CSI for those of you desiring a copy. They are on a table at the entrance to the Conference Hall. If you do not now receive our publications please complete one of the forms on the publications table and we will add you to our mailing list. You can also gain access to our unclassified materials on the CSI homepage on the CIA Internet site.

Additionally, next year, we are committed to producing a compendium of intelligence course syllabi, and we invite each of you to submit yours for inclusion in this publication.

We also want to serve as a bridge between you and the rest of the CIA, locating speakers for you, placing your students in touch with our recruiters, and so on.

Finally, I urge you to invite CSI officers, especially our historians, to lecture in your classes and participate in your seminars and colloquia.

Let me just say a few words about our History Staff. It consists of six superb historians led by Gerry Haines, the CIA Chief Historian. They produce a steady stream of classified and unclassified monographs, articles, and books, which are consistently recognized for the quality of their scholarship and writing. Our historians hold Ph.D.s in history or political science, have extensive "line" experience within the Agency, as analysts or operations officers, and are experienced lecturers.

To underscore the unique role played by CIA historians, I'm pleased to announce that we have recently begun a program that will help us capture more fully the history of CIA: a systematic oral history program. We understand, of course, that not every historian is an enthusiastic supporter of oral history. But in our organization, in particular, in which the details of sensitive operations are frequently captured in a variety of documents with limited dissemination or even not written down, as was the practice in some of the most sensitive operations in the 1950's, we think an oral history program will make an important contribution to our understanding of history and the evolution of the intelligence profession.

So, that is my offer to you. If you are teaching a course on intelligence and would like our support, be it in securing copies of our publications or in requesting a guest speaker, call us. We will do everything we can to help you. We would like to be your guide to unclassified and declassified resources in CIA and the rest of the intelligence community that might benefit you in your courses.

What can we bring to the table? -- To answer that question, let me quote something Professor Ernest May of Harvard's John F. Kennedy School said at a CIA-sponsored symposium on teaching intelligence earlier this decade:

"Access to documents is only part of what scholars need from the Intelligence Community. Scholars need orientation to the world from which the documents emerge so they can understand and evaluate the documents, make informed guesses about the extent to which the essential record is complete or incomplete, and cross-question memoirs and testimony."

To illustrate his point, May related the following anecdote:

"Some years ago, an eminent and exceedingly able scholar presented at the Woodrow Wilson Center a paper dealing with postwar planning during World War II by the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The paper made much of some memoranda issuing from a JCS committee composed of very senior officers. General Andrew Goodpaster, Eisenhower's personal secretary, commented on the paper. Though with characteristic tact, General Goodpaster made the point that those particular senior officers were not the ones in whose judgment the Chiefs of Staff placed great trust. 'If you are looking for the memoranda to which General Marshall paid attention,' General Goodpaster said, 'find those with the initials GAL for Col. George A. Lincoln. That was the person Marshall respected.' The basic point is one that any academic should appreciate. To thread one's way through the immense volume of papers in any modern government agency, scholars need the kind of guidance that General Goodpaster offered-about whose initials mattered to whom. That information has to come from people who were there."

My point is: Let us be your guide. We want to be a resource to you.

To facilitate communications between you and the Center, I have named Dr. John Hedley to be CSI's Academic Referent. John just recently retired after a distinguished 33-year career with the Agency. Among his many important assignments, John taught a graduate course on intelligence and wrote several articles for academic journals while at Georgetown University from 1993-1995. He continues to teach intelligence as an adjunct professor at Georgetown and is on the editorial board of the International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence. I would like John to be in frequent correspondence with you--via the telephone, the Internet or the post office. I would like to see him making visits to your campuses to observe and participate in your courses and seminars. I hope you will view him as your resource.

I'm sure some of you will be asking yourselves, "Why? Why is he proposing this?" I can assure you that it is not because we want to put a pro-CIA spin on intelligence history. I can assure you that our historians are ready, willing, and able to call them as they see them. They have no need to fear for their careers when they produce works that are critical of the Agency.

No, I want to help you because I believe it is important. It is important that the public be given a realistic and historically accurate picture of the intelligence profession--its successes and its failures; its strengths and its weaknesses. It is no longer adequate to have the history of intelligence written by journalists and malcontents. It is no longer acceptable to have an intelligence agency, or the intelligence community as a whole, unnecessarily or inappropriately isolated from the citizens from which it draws its funding, its recruits, its political support-indeed, for whom it works.

If I may quote former DCI Bob Gates,

"The purpose of greater openness is to make CIA and the intelligence process more visible and understandable. We must try to help people understand better what CIA does and how we do it. Our … approach grows out of the belief that it is important that CIA should be accountable to the American people-both directly and through the Congress-as a law-abiding organization comprised of talented people of integrity who have a critical role in supporting national security policymakers in a complex and often dangerous world. We are under no illusions that CIA, whatever the level of its efforts, will be able to win recognition as an 'open' institution. What we hope to do is all we can do to be as forthcoming, candid, informative, and helpful as possible to the public, the media, and academia consistent with our mission and the protection of sources and methods."

In my view, the time is well past for moving public knowledge of the intelligence profession beyond the image it has received in countless pieces of pulp fiction and Hollywood adventure movies, in which intelligence professionals are regularly either demonized or treated as omniscient and omnipotent super-heroes. No one who bases his understanding of intelligence on The Hunt for Red October, for example, would have the slightest idea what role an intelligence analyst plays, or how the intelligence process as a whole works, for that matter.

In fact, we have found that even many experienced military officers and civilian employees in national security agencies frequently have a limited understanding of what we do or how we do it. To help remedy that situation, I believe we need to explore creation of a National Intelligence University that would more fully inform professional military officers and civilian government employees about the capabilities and processes of the Intelligence Community. Our University would not necessarily have a campus, but rather would consist of coordinated course offerings that would be taught by the Intelligence Community members. For example, NSA could offer a course on SIGINT collection; CIA could teach HUMINT collection and all-source analysis; NRO and the National Imagery and Mapping Agency could teach imagery; DIA could offer a course on military and tactical intelligence and so on. The model for such a National Intelligence University is right in this building. I believe the Joint Military Intelligence College is the foundation for such a university.

Similarly, I believe the way to close the gap between intelligence professionals and the citizens they work for is to promote the serious academic study of, and research into, the intelligence profession. I think many of you would agree that courses on intelligence are badly underrepresented at American universities. We can all list our favorite reasons for that. Some might point out that it is for the same reason that such subjects as military history are underrepresented: such courses are simply out of favor in the prevailing socio-political climate on campuses and within disciplines today. Some might mention the James Bond syndrome as a cause: the derring-do of secret agents surely can't be seriously discussed as an academic topic. Some might point out that intelligence studies have largely been captured by the larger field of diplomatic history, where the tendency seems to be to treat intelligence as a minor sideshow whose contributions have been largely unimportant in the vast sweep of the foreign policy process. There is, however, another, important, reason that I'm sure many of you are thinking about.

I suspect many of you might mention the limited availability of source material as a reason for the lack of courses on intelligence. After all, you can't teach it if you can't first research it. And you can't research it if the primary source material isn't available. Perhaps just as importantly, if you can see only some of the material on a given subject and not all of it, how can you trust what you see? The matter of mistrust looms large in all this, and it is focused on the CIA much more so than on any other government agency involved in intelligence activities.

At this point, the "D" word stares us right in the face: DECLASSIFICATION! Is the CIA doing all that it could to declassify records, the release of which would no longer harm the national security? Before going any further let me hasten to note that I am not in charge of the Agency's declassification programs. But I can say a few words about DCI George Tenet's commitment to declassification.

In May 1998, he issued a statement on declassification that reads in part as follows:

"Although much of our work must be done in secrecy, we have a responsibility to the American people, and to history, to account for our actions and the quality of our work. Accordingly, I have made a serious commitment to the public release of information that with the passage of time no longer needs to be protected under our security classification system."

To achieve his declassification goals, little more than a year ago, the DCI created the Office of Information Management (OIM) to consolidate the operations and management of the various information review and release functions at CIA. During this brief period of time, OIM has made substantial progress in meeting the demands of the public and complying with a multitude of legislative mandates. Let me mention just a few of their accomplishments last year:

  • CIA released more than 1 million pages of records under the 25-year declassification requirements of Executive Order 12958. This year, we expect to review 5 million pages, and 8 million or more pages a year thereafter.
  • We closed in excess of 7,000 FOIA/Privacy Act requests, 2,000 more cases than the prior year and a record for the program, which began in 1975. As a result, we were able to reduce the backlog of FOIA/PA requests by over 1,000 cases-a drop of about 20 percent.
  • We reviewed for classified information and approved in a timely manner more than 300 manuscripts-over 20,000 pages-by current and former employees for publication in newspapers, books, journals, and the like.
  • We released well over 200,000 pages of JFK assassination records in full compliance with federal legislation mandating the review and release of these materials.

Having cited those statistics, let me quote from DCI Tenet again:

"None of this is easy. There are no shortcuts here. It takes experienced, knowledgeable people sitting down with each document and going over it page by page, line by line. There is no alternative. We take our obligation to protect those who have worked with us in the past very seriously. We also have to consider the impact of release on our ongoing diplomatic and intelligence relationships. A mistake on our part can put a life in danger or jeopardize a bilateral relationship integral to our security. Suffice it to say, the demands for declassification review far exceed the capabilities of the personnel who are available under current budgetary limitations to perform it. This forces us to make choices in terms of what information will be reviewed first. In setting these priorities, the Agency is guided by its responsibilities under the law and Executive Order, as well as by policies established by the DCI."

In fact, CIA now has the equivalent of over 350 people working full-time declassifying documents. I can assure you that this number compares very favorably to the numbers of employees the Agency has assigned to several of its most important core missions.

I also would like to express my hope that our greater openness in recent years has contributed to the expansion of intelligence literature that has taken place in the last few years. In 1994-95, there were only 215 intelligence books listed in Books in Print; today, there are 813. There is a great deal of material publicly available to support courses in intelligence, material to support research and writing on all the elements of the intelligence profession, and material available to write new books on all aspects of intelligence.

I do not imagine that all of this data will satisfy those of you who are suspicious of us or those who are simply impatient with us. Nor do I want to give the impression that I am saying, "Trust us." I only want to emphasize that I personally believe the CIA and DCI George Tenet have a serious commitment to declassifying and releasing documents, consistent with our mission responsibilities, just as quickly as possible. No other intelligence service in the world has as open a policy.

My objective is to communicate that we are trying to do the right thing. But, it would be disingenuous of me to stand here and try to use this data to infer that the dam on the release of the full range of intelligence documents--operational cables, source files, the details of espionage operations and similar documentation will be breached. Analytical products that deal with the gamut of issues addressed by CIA and the Intelligence Community will be declassified unless, in their declassification, we endanger a source, expose a method, or have the potential to seriously damage our relations with a foreign government.

At the end of the day, the choice for us is clear--as is required by law and our conscience--we are going to protect those men and women who choose to secretly work for the US Government against terrorists, rogue states, proliferators of weapons of mass destruction and anyone else, who seeks to harm US citizens or vital US interests.

Earlier, I tried to answer the question: Why is he proposing this? There is another reason I feel strongly it is important to study the history and role of US intelligence. There are 77 stars inscribed on the wall at CIA Headquarters for the men and women who gave their last full measure of devotion to their country. Of those 77 stars, 38 are not identified because they died in secrecy, under cover, anonymous to the world but heroes to those of us privileged to have served with them. They sought to protect America and Americans from those who threatened our freedoms and our way of life. We owe it to them to study the profession in which they served their country and to tell their story as fully and completely as possible.

Let me turn now to some other steps the Center is taking to promote the teaching and study of intelligence in our universities.

Many of you will be familiar with our Officer in Residence program, in which we sponsor CIA officers for two-year tours on the faculties of participating colleges and universities such as Harvard, Princeton and the military academies. The CIA officers are visiting faculty members. They teach, conduct research, and act as a resource for faculty colleagues and students. Each assignment is tailored to the individual and the institution. Many Officers in Residence speak to community groups and lecture at other, nearby academic institutions as well.

Second, I believe we need to do more to promote research and writing on intelligence topics at the undergraduate and graduate levels. To promote such research and writing, I would like to announce here that the Center is creating an annual award which will be presented to the undergraduate or graduate student who writes the best essay on an intelligence topic at an American university. The competition will be judged by the editorial board of Studies in Intelligence, and the winning paper each year will be published in Studies.

Third, CIA sponsors the Harvard University Intelligence and Policy Project, which supports research and training on how intelligence is actually used, or not used, by government officials devising national security policies. The research culminates in the preparation of case studies on particular policy episodes. The project was founded in 1987 to help those who prepare assessments of foreign events and those who make foreign policy decisions, better understand one another's needs, interests, cultures and perspectives. The program has produced more than 18 case studies at present, on such topics as, "The Fall of the Shah of Iran;" "The 1956 Suez Crisis;" and "The CIA and the Fall of the Soviet Empire: The Politics of 'Getting It Right'." We hope you make use of these cases and the new cases that will be written with our support.

Finally, I'd like to point to the compendiums of declassified documents with historical commentary that we produce in conjunction with our conferences. These unique volumes make fine starting points for professors seeking source material for courses on the Agency or the intelligence profession. In addition to the volumes I mentioned earlier, let me mention others that are available to you:

  • The CIA Under Harry Truman;
  • Assessing the Soviet Threat: The Early Cold War Years; and
  • Corona: America's First Satellite Program.

These volumes combine an interpretative historical essay with selected, representative declassified documents.

So what should we be teaching in our courses on intelligence? I'm sure each of you have your own strongly held views on this subject which I hope you will share with me in the course of this conference, but I thought I might close out my presentation here today by giving you a summary of some of the major themes I think are important in understanding the intelligence process today. These are in no particular order.

  • First, the growth in importance of technology, especially technical means of collection. In the mid-1950s, perhaps the most important event in the history of American intelligence took place: the joining of government (in the form of the CIA and the Air Force), academia (in the person of such intellectual giants as James Killian of MIT), and business (Lockheed, Kodak, Polaroid) to produce the technical systems that finally allowed the US to keep tabs on the strategic threat from the Soviet Union, which had proven largely impervious to the classical methods of HUMINT. The question for today, it seems to me, is can this triumvirate, which is already strained, continue to provide the US with technological superiority in the intelligence field?
  • Second, the growth of oversight, especially Congressional oversight, but also more generally, public scrutiny as evidenced by the far more intensive press coverage that intelligence activities receive, closer attention from the Executive Branch, and also from the Judiciary. It would be hard for me to exaggerate the sea-change the Congressional investigations of the 1970s and the subsequent formation of the oversight committees caused in the Agency's culture and practices. As some of you may know, there were occasions in the 1950s when the Congress would pass the Agency's budget without even holding hearings on it, and one or two powerful Senators and Representatives, such as Richard Russell and Clarence Cannon, would carefully limit the access of other members of Congress to Agency briefings. The change in the relationship is illustrated in the following statistic: Last year, Agency officers briefed members or staffers of Congress on 1,350 occasions, or an average of 5 times per working day.
  • Third, the influence of intelligence on policy, and, concomitantly, the influence of politics and policymakers on intelligence. What has been the impact of intelligence in the broader foreign policy formulation process? Under what circumstances do policymakers use intelligence? Ignore intelligence? Try to influence intelligence? What causes certain Presidents, like John Kennedy, to regularly read intelligence, and others, like Lyndon Johnson, to remain almost completely uninterested?

And does it matter? Sherman Kent, the Chairman of the Board of National Estimates from 1952 to 1967, once famously said,

"A certain amount of all this worrying we do about influence upon policy is off the mark. For in many cases, no matter what we tell the policymakers, and no matter how right we are and how convincing, he will upon occasion disregard the thrust of our findings for reasons beyond our ken. If influence cannot be our goal, what should it be? Two things. It should be relevant within the area of our competence, and above all it should be credible."

Is, therefore, the search for signs of influence a feckless endeavor? Kent himself came to the conclusion that, "In the last analysis, if the NIEs did nothing else, they contributed to a higher level of discourse in matters affecting the security of the country."

  • A fourth theme is the importance of the DCI as leader, administrator, and intelligence advisor to the President. What makes a successful DCI? Which DCIs have been successful and why? George Tenet is the fifth DCI to lead CIA and the Intelligence Community in this decade. The average tenure of DCIs in the 1990s has been about 19 months, and given the many and lengthy nomination and confirmation processes for all the DCI nominees, the Agency was without a DCI for more than one year of the last nine years. What has caused this trend, and what will be its impact? Can it continue in the future without doing great harm to the Agency, the Community, and the nation?
  • Fifth, the use of covert action by administrations through history. How have US presidents used covert action as an instrument of statecraft since the founding of the republic? What was the role of covert action during the Cold War? Was it a surrogate for conflict between military forces of the U.S. and the Soviet Union? Was it a "quick fix" for problems administrations could not otherwise solve? How important has covert action been as a policy tool? And, what are the costs to the Agency for undertaking politically unpopular covert actions at Presidential direction?
  • Sixth, the relevancy of secret intelligence in the Information Age. Have the classical methods of intelligence collection, analysis, and dissemination been made nearly obsolete by the multiplicity of information sources that policymakers now have at their disposal? What role is left for these traditional methods? What contributions have they made in the past, and does the velocity at which information moves today make it possible for them to make similar contributions in the future? Can intelligence be used to harness the promise of the Information Age?
  • Another theme could be the partnership of intelligence with law enforcement and the military. What is the proper relationship between law enforcement and intelligence? How closely should CIA and the FBI collaborate in their respective missions? What should be the role of intelligence and the military in addressing such transnational issues as counternarcotics, counterterrrorism, and international organized crime?
  • Eighth, the fundamental question of the role of a secret intelligence organization in a democratic society. What should be the role of CIA in the new millenium? In what circumstances should we conduct espionage? What is the ethical basis for espionage? What are the ethical challenges producing all-source analysis for policymakers?
  • Finally, successes and failures. The most important question of all: Have the American people gotten their money's worth out of the intelligence community? Just what is an "intelligence failure?" Are things simply right or wrong in the intelligence business? Or is success measured more accurately along a continuum, in which we should strive to be mostly right most of the time? Is perfect knowledge possible?

I'm sure that many of you could come up with equally interesting lists just as long as this one, and that's why I want to again urge you to submit your syllabus to us for inclusion in the compendium of intelligence syllabi that we intend to produce next year. We can all learn from each other.

In conclusion, I'd like to suggest that we can form a very successful partnership to advance the study of intelligence in our universities. I hope that I have been able to convince you of our genuine commitment to this goal. I have tried to outline for you what we are doing to foster the growth of intelligence studies at present and what we plan to do in the near future. I have even, perhaps somewhat presumptuously, suggested some of the themes we think it is important to address in classes on intelligence.

Rest assured, we will be "out there," lecturing, discussing, and presenting papers about intelligence. But in the end, there are many more of you than there are of us, and it is you and your colleagues who are in the best position to advance the field from its present status as something of a curiosity taught in a relative handful of universities to a more broadly accepted academic subject that will be offered as a standard part of most universities' curricula. It is you who will have to endow it with the conceptual and theoretical framework that will give the subject greater academic legitimacy. It is you who will have to attract the students, you who will have to do the research, write the papers, organize the conferences, and do the dozens of other things that will be required to ensure that the study of intelligence grows as a legitimate field of study.

We at the Center for the Study of Intelligence stand ready to help you. Together, I am confident we can do it.


Historical Document
Posted: Apr 03, 2007 08:57 PM
Last Updated: Jun 20, 2008 08:10 AM