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1. You have created several concepts which you explain throughout your books and articles such as, Smart Nation, Information Arbitrage, and Information Peacekeeping. Can you explain the concept of Information Peacekeeping and Peacekeeping Intelligence?
Information Peacekeeping is the use of information to create a prosperous world at peace, and therefore to avoid conflict. Peacekeeping Intelligence is the application of the proven process of intelligence (which is not secret by definition, only selected sources are secret) to actual peacekeeping operations, generally under a United Nations or regional international organization (e.g. African Union) mandate.
2. You write about sharing across the eight “communities” of intelligence, which approach to intelligence do you suggest here?
Governments and corporations generally do not respect the intelligence function, in part because the secrecy of intelligence allows the consumers of intelligence to avoid accountability for ignoring intelligence. Only public intelligence is shareable as well as scalable. The eight tribes or communities of information and intelligence are Academic, Civil Society (including labor and religion), Commerce (including the black market and System D as well as organized crime), Government, Media, Military, and Non-Government/Non-Profit. Furthermore, the secret communities have refused to do “whole of government intelligence or compare and contrast intelligence (domestic competitiveness with foreign competitors). Apart from assuring pervasive deep sharing across all boundaries, we continue to require an Open Source Agency, as proposed on pages 23 and 423 of the 9/11 Commission Report, but under diplomatic auspices as a sister agency to the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), or as a presidential agency affiliated with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
3. One of the challenges of OSINT can be the danger of revealing one’s interests and intentions when using OSINT, for example when asking a commercial information service for certain information. How do we prevent or protect from such danger or challenge?
This is nonsense. 95% or more of what anyone needs to know is openly available, and there are in additional ample means for creating cut-outs or cover for action, ranging from graduate students doing a thesis to investors doing due diligence. Most secrecy is about protecting fraud, waste, and abuse, about avoiding accountability.
4. What is the best way of integrating OSINT in to all source analysis? Should OSINT serve as a foundation for other intelligence collection disciplines?
OSINT is both a sub-discipline within each of the classified disciplines, and an all-source discipline in its own right. The classified managers have been unprofessional, ignorant, and in betrayal of the public trust by refusing to do the right thing: as is now the law in The Netherlands, nothing should be collected by secret means that can be collected via open source means. The pioneers have already moved beyond OSINT to M4IS2 (Multinational, Multiagency, Multidisciplinary, Multidomain Information-Sharing and Sense-Making). The legal world is now starting to do what transnational crime and System D have always done: routing around governments that lack intelligence and integrity.
5. Could you explain more about the Burundi exercise? Both books that you mentioned (Bean and Olcott) refer to this exercise, however, you point out areas where they misunderstood the exercise.
6. You speak of the need for faith-based global intelligence exchange. What do you mean by this? Do you believe that this would apply or be possible for all faiths such as, Islam where you see there are many conflicts among different sects of Islam? Also, is this a politically feasible idea; would this lead to more conflicts and more distrust among different faiths?
We desperately need a religious counterintelligence service in the USA. In my view, the Muslims, Quakers, and most moderate Protestant groups are not a threat to the USA. The greatest threat to the USA are Jews under Mossad and Israeli Zionist control, Catholics in Opus Dei, and the Pentecostals that have penetrated the U.S. Army’s highest ranks. At the same time, I think very highly of Capt Doug Johnston, USN (Ret) and his work on faith-based diplomacy.
7. I know as part of your many years of experience you have also served at the Foreign Intelligence Requirements and Capabilities Plan (FIRCAP) and you were also responsible for creating the Marine Corps Intelligence Center. Combining these, what you see as requirements for creating a “bare bone” targeted OSINT CELL? (targeting a foreign language)
The gravest problem we have is the refusal of secret intelligence mandarins—and defense operational program “leaders” such as those in charge of the USAF Gorgon Stare program—to do serious multinational information collection and processing. We do not speak 183 important languages and we do not have US citizens with clearances capable of discovery, discrimination, distillation, and dissemination of what is important in foreign language open source. The defense insistence on treating OSINT as a technical collection challenge instead of a human intelligence (HUMINT) challenge is the primary obstacle to making progress in this area.
8. What are the particular functions of a ‘regional intelligence centers’ and what you believe the advantages of such centers are?
Using the military as the C4I (Command and Control, Communications, Computing, & Intelligence) hub in each country, I believe that we can quickly and inexpensively establish a global M4IS2 grid that operates predominantly in OSINT mode, with the military in each country being responsible for outreach, integration, and exploitation of the other seven tribes in their respective countries. At the same time, joint M4IS2 efforts would be able to crowd-source diaspora tweets and translations—I am very impressed by the International Crisis Mapping endeavor and the pioneering of Dr. Patrick Meiers, who is now in Qatar because the US Government simply refuses to be serious about OSINT innovation. It is a source of disappointment to me that Jim Clapper chose to be a DNI for the past rather than the future—all of these ideas have been known to him since 2006 [the DoD OSINT Leadership and Staff briefings were created for him by Dr. Joseph Markowitz, myself, and the one totally holistic DoD employee in the OSINT domain], but for reasons only he can articulate, he has refused to redirect the IC toward the future…..hence we are creating all of this outside the government, and the government will be the persistent loser over the next decade.
9. What do you see as the best practices of NATO OSINT?
There are none. JAC Molesworth is a disaster area, NATO is if anything worse than the UN is its legacy pathologies, and I expect nothing from them in the near future. When BGen Jim Cox, Canada (Ret) left NATO, and LtCdr Andrew Chester, Canada (Sep) left SACLANT, OSINT within NATO died immediately. Although there have been a proliferation of handbooks across many different organizations, there is no coherent means of creating an global M4IS2 grid. While I personally organized events that trained 7,500 mid-career officers that now oversee what I am told is a global population of 25,000 OSINT practitioners, most of them have taken on the “butts in seats” model, using citizens with clearances instead of a constantly changing mix of individuals with exactly the right knowledge acquired at someone else’s expense and ready to create new knowledge in the instant. Citation analytics is a classic example of how ignorant governments are and the US Government in particular—we do not take the trouble to identify the top journalists, top academics, top field practitioners across the eight tribes, and hence we continue to rely—fully 24 years after I started this line of inquiry—on children and annuitants (retired people brought back as contractors) with clearances, and zero access to 80% or more of what can be gotten via OSINT (less than 2% is actually online in retrievable form—we still do not do deep web, C drives, emails for substance, or primary direct outreach to real people). I continue to believe that only an independent Open Source Agency, one that provides all OSINT directly to the high side in copy, but keeps ownership of the originals for unencumbered multinational unclassified sharing, is the way to go. I am in active search for a government that will fund this—if the US Government does not, its slide to the bottom will be persistent and inevitable.
2011: Competitive Commercial Intelligence and Strategy in International Markets – Context and Challenge Inteligencia Empresarial y Estrategia Competitiva en Mercados Internacional – Contexto y Desafio
- Analysis (10)
- C4/JOE/Software (4)
- HUMINT (11)
- Law Enforcement (12)
- Military (19)
- OSINT Generic (14)
- Stabilization (20)
- Threats/Topical (13)
- UN/NGO (18)
10. What organizational structure or design do you see best appropriate for creating a targeted OSINT Cell?
See my response to question 7. However, I would stress the concepts of hybrid and panarchy. Only “open” is agile and responsive. This is why I wrote and have seen published THE OPEN SOURCE EVERYTHING MANIFESTO: Transparency, Truth & Trust. We don’t just need OSINT, we need Open Source Everything. The US Government is headed for a much worse collapse in 2013-2014, and in my view, the only thing that could save both the government and the Republic is an Open Source Agency that aggressively implements and open source everything strategy, beginning with a full commitment to open source software, open source hardware, open spectrum, and of course open government.