Review: Open Source Information–The Missing Dimension of Intelligence

3 Star, Intelligence (Government/Secret), Intelligence (Public)

CSIS OSINT 2Marginal Across the Board–26 pages of pablum, July 5, 2008

Arnaud De Borchgrave

I went to the meeting at which this was handed out, and left when I realized that most of those in attendance were retirees or students, and this book managed to discuss a topic I and 749 others have been pioneering since 1988, without ever once mentioning anyone else's effort.

I am not easily outraged, but this “immaculate conception” is on the one hand, encouraging (it only took CSIS 20 years to catch up with the rest of us) and on the other, infuriating because the arrogance and myopia of those who put this booklet (note the page count–26 pages) forward is unbounded on the one hand and so narrow on the other as to be clinically blind.

NewsFlash: Singapore is the only country that listened to me when I did my world tour in 1994, and they are well on their way to being the first “smart nation” but they are making the common mistake of believing in technology as a substitute for creating the world brain with real humans. The Nordic countries are close behind, and have pioneered Multinational Multiagency Multidisciplinary Multidomain Information Sharing (M4IS) and public sense-making (24 of us are pioneering public intelligence in the public interest)

CSIS has enormous potential that is failing to contribute to the public dialog because they lack the discipline and humility to reach out to multi-cultural pioneers. Hubris is fatal.

In the comment I provide URLs to material superior to this lightweight endeavor, all free. Below I list a handful of books from true experts:
Early Warning: Using Competitive Intelligence to Anticipate Market Shifts, Control Risk, and Create Powerful Strategies
The New Competitor Intelligence: The Complete Resource for Finding, Analyzing, and Using Information about Your Competitors
The Secret Language of Competitive Intelligence: How to See Through and Stay Ahead of Business Disruptions, Distortions, Rumors, and Smoke Screens
Strategic and Competitive Analysis
Super Searchers Do Business: The Online Secrets of Top Business Researchers (Super Searchers, V. 1)
The New Craft of Intelligence: Personal, Public, & Political–Citizen's Action Handbook for Fighting Terrorism, Genocide, Disease, Toxic Bombs, & Corruption

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