Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Gates Said Planning To Limit DOD HUMINT Activities

The nomination of Robert M. Gates as secretary of defense has begun to ease concerns in the intelligence community about the rapid growth of Pentagon intelligence activities since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, said experts inside and outside the government and on Capitol Hill. ...

In 1991, after being confirmed for the dual role of director of central intelligence and CIA director, Gates tried to rein in Pentagon activities by getting a White House directive from then-President George H.W. Bush that created the Community Management Staff to help oversee all intelligence activities. A CIA history of that period says Gates, whose background was as an analyst, saw the Defense Intelligence Agency "as 'feeling [its] oats' and 'moving to expand in every direction,' including pushing some 'crazy ideas' " on the collection of human intelligence. ...

More recently, Gates watched Rumsfeld create the position of undersecretary of defense for intelligence, whose role is to coordinate and expand worldwide military intelligence activities in the post-Sept. 11 world. In an op-ed piece in The Washington Post in May, Gates wrote that he and other CIA veterans were "unhappy about the dominance of the Defense Department in the intelligence arena" at a time when "close cooperation between the military and the CIA in both clandestine and intelligence collection is essential." ...

One quick indication of how Gates will deal with interagency tensions will be whether Rumsfeld's undersecretary of defense for intelligence, Stephen A. Cambone, and his top deputy, Army Lt. Gen. William G. Boykin, remain in their current positions. They have backed the growth of the Counterintelligence Field Activity, the controversial new agency that in three years has spent nearly $1 billion to gather data to be used in the protection of defense facilities at home and abroad.

Both have supported the increased roles for the military in sending Pentagon intelligence collectors abroad to gather information that could be needed if military operations against terrorists were initiated in various countries. Some conflicts arose in past years when Defense agents turned up in countries without notice to U.S. ambassadors and CIA chiefs of station.

The word is that Cambone is definitely going, and most likely Boykin, too.


Post a Comment

<< Home