Originally created by Dr. Mark Lowenthal, then with OSS.Net, Inc. and since modified, this slide, combined with Graphic: OSINT and Missing Information, depicts the challenge. What most do not understand is these two facts:
1. Open Source Information (OSIF) is not the same as Open Source Intelligence (OSINT). The latter is deliberately discovered, discriminated, distilled, and delivered decision-support tailored to a specific decision. No does this now in the IC that we know of.
2. Humans and Human Minds, not vast unaffordable non-interoperable technical processing farms, are how we cut to the chase. The magic of OSINT, as Dr. Stevan Dedijer stated so clearly in 1992, is to “know who knows,” so as to connect, as Robert Steele stated in Canada in 1994, the source with the consumer. This can only be done with Multinational Engagement, it absolutely will never happen if we continue to insist on US citizens with clearances as the heart of “national intelligence.”
IC’s Language, Linguistic Shortfalls Under Scrutiny
by Anthony L. Kimery
Thursday, 21 January 2010
The IC still has important pockets of critical intelligence analysis that continue to suffer.
The rank and file analysts at the CIA, NSA and elsewhere throughout the Intelligence Community (IC) are patriotic, dedicated … hardworking. But they have long been hampered by a lack of both linguists and language proficient subject matter experts to help them make sense of the overwhelming storm of intelligence that is routinely siphoned from the air and gathered by human intelligence sources every day. This blizzard of information is blinding.
According to IC sources HSToday.us talked on background, the IC’s failure to detect the recent attempted terrorist attacks on the US homeland wasn’t just about the failure to connect the existing dots – of which there were many – but also was because of the inability to quickly and effectively interpret country-language specific intelligence, such as that which was collected in Yemen.
. . . . . . .
Last July, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence reported that it “is concerned about the abysmal state of the Intelligence Community’s foreign language programs.”
The Committee’s report noted that “the collection of intelligence depends heavily on language, whether information is gathered in the field from a human source or from a technical collection system. Even traditionally nonlinguistic operations such as imagery rely on foreign language skills to focus and direct collection efforts.”
However, the Committee concluded, “almost eight years after the terrorist attacks of September 11th and the shift in focus to a part of the world with different languages than previous targets, the cadre of intelligence professionals capable of speaking, reading, or understanding critical regional languages such as Pashto, Dari, or Urdu remains essentially nonexistent.”
Continuing, the report stated that “the Intelligence Reform Act required the DNI [Office of the Director of National Intelligence] to identify the linguistic requirements of the Intelligence Community, and to develop a comprehensive plan to meet those requirements.”
But “five years later, the ODNI has still not completed an IC-wide comprehensive foreign language plan that designates specific linguist or language requirements, lays out goals or timelines, or designates specific actions required to meet them.”
To the left is the traditional intelligence wheel, consisting of the 16 or so (there are other elements not listed) entities that in theory comprise the predominantly secret U.S. Intelligence Community.
Below is the emergent intelligence wheel that harnesses all human minds in relation to all information all the time. We still need spies and secrecy but in moderation.
Although this version is centered on the President, it can just as easily be centered on any Cabinet Department down to the branch level, any Congressional jurisdiction, any private sector domain of interest.