The International Crisis Group is pleased to announce its new premiere annual event in Brussels: The Global Briefing. This two-day exclusive gathering – involving over thirty of Crisis Group’s senior staff and expert Board members – will take you beyond the headlines to examine urgent issues and solutions to the major conflict flashpoints across the globe today. The briefing is targeted at mid-level and senior representatives from governments, multilaterals, think tanks, NGOs, media, foundations, corporations and universities and will be limited to 120 participants. Details on the agenda, format, cost, and registration process will be posted on Crisis Group’s website at the end of June.
Although Dr. Metz fully understands the asymmetry of will and touches on the asymmetry of morale, he does not address the core intelligence question of our century: the asymmetry of morality. Will & Ariel Durant understood this and highlighted the strategic value of being “in the right” in their capstone work, The Lessons of History. Others, including Buckminster Fuller in Critical Pathand Dr. Robert Ackoff (see first link below), understood that context matters, and within context, morality and doing the right thing.
Morale is not the same as moral, and the “collateral advantage” that allows one to harness the distributed intelligence of the Whole Earth–to receive unsolicited warnings large and small, to receive unsolicited good ideas large and small–comes ONLY when one holds the moral high ground. It merits stressing that CONSENSUS is most easily achieved when those striving to achieve consensus share a common faith in integrity–in morality.
America is in the wrong today, because the US Government is imposing on both the domestic public and on humanity at large the wrong policies, the wrong programs, and the wrong acquisitions–as well as the wrong distribution of US taxpayer funds in the service of dictators, cartel leaders, and predatory immoral banks and businesses not at all interested in earning legal ethical profit fully compliant with true cost economics also known as the triple bottom line.
On Dennis Blair’s last day in office as director of national intelligence, the Obama administration seems more stymied than ever in its efforts to replace him.
Following a torrent of criticism from Capitol Hill—apparently touched off by this Declassified interview with Rep. Pete Hoekstra, the House Intelligence Committee’s top Republican—the candidacy of James Clapper looks doubtful to say the least. On top of Hoekstra’s criticism of the retired three-star general, who currently serves as the Defense Department’s intelligence chief, the Senate Intelligence Committee’s leaders are now also publicly saying they think he’s the wrong man for the job.
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The latest boomlet in speculation on potential candidates is centered on Michael Vickers, a former Green Beret and CIA operative who has been the Defense Department’s top civilian in charge of counterterrorism and special-operations programs slnce late in the Bush administration. Vickers was one of 15 potential DNI candidates we identified when news of the job opening broke….
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But other names keep coming up. Some, such as Homeland Security undersecretary Rand Beers, Joint Chiefs of Staff Deputy Chairman Gen. James Cartwright, and outgoing Sen. Evan Bayh, have surfaced before (one former official who worked in national security positions with Beers describes him as “indefatigable”). But others are new to this particular search, including Rep. Jane Harman, former Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker, and former CIA deputy director John McLaughlin.
Phi Beta Iota: Worth a complete read. Here are the fifteen potential DNI’s they identified earlier:, followed by our picks.
Political and bureaucratic heavyweights:
FBI Director Robert Mueller
CIA Director Leon Panetta
Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg
Marine Gen. James Cartwright, deputy chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
Intelligence and defense technocrats: Lt. Gen. Jim Clapper, currently Defense Department intelligence supremo;
Michael Vickers, assistant defense secretary for special operations;
John Hamre, a former deputy defense secretary;
Harvard academic Joseph Nye, also a former senior Pentagon official; and
John McHugh, a former GOP congressman whom Obama named as secretary of the Army.
High-profile intelligence politicos:
John Brennan, the White House counterterrorism and Homeland Security supremo; or
Rand Beers, a former career intelligence official who left his job as a senior counterterrorism adviser in the George W. Bush White House to become national security adviser to Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, and now serves as undersecretary of Homeland Security
former Sen. Chuck Hagel, a Republican close to Obama; former congressman and
intelligence-reform campaigner Lee Hamilton;
former Indiana senator Evan Bayh; and
former representative Tim Roemer (another intel-reform campaigner who is now U.S. ambassador in India)
Phi Beta Iota: Everyone in the above lists is a ridiculous untenable suggestion with one exception: Senator Chuck Hagel. His combination of integrity, substantive experience, standing on the Hill, and general non-partisan common sense, is ideal. What he lacks is a kick-ass deputy who actually understands all the crap that the agencies–and their den mother Jim Clapper–put forward. Leon Panetta would actually be very good as the Deputy, responsible for turning off all funds to all agencies at 20% a year (10% a year restored for new initiatives; savings to education and national research under DNI oversight as provided for in the Smart Nation-Safe Nation Act) but Hagel is going to need a kitchen cabinet of truth-tellers and we are pretty sure he is not even aware of who they might be. That is his sucking chest wound–if he solves that he will not only earn Obama a second term, he will transcend politics and impact directly on the totality of all budgets–US, state & local, other nations, corporations, NGOs. Jack Devine is in the wings in New York, the Trilateral Commission’s choice for either DNI or Director of Central Intelligence, he has our vote for the latter position.
The problem President Obama has is in the White House is that no one working for him actually “gets it” with respect to 21st Century governance–between his pogomist and his pollster and his talented but oblivious others, he is running on fumes, will not get a second term, and is simply counting the days to when he can follow Bill Bradley, Al Gore, and Bill Clinton in Goldman Sachs honey-land–and screw the American public, they were never the intended beneficiaries of all this in the first place.
The search term brings up appropriate results, but the fact of the search gives us an opportunity to provide comment.
1) Nothing now being used by governments, and certainly not iBase or Palantir, both aging technologies that do not scale and have too many fat-finger handicaps, fulfills the originial requirements documents crafted in the late 1980’s.
2) The ONLY programs that have gotten anywhere close are COPERNICUS plus plus, and SILOBREAKER. However, both of these have been slow to recognize the urgency of integrating–fully integrating–capabilities that address each of the eighteen functionalities. Below is the list of softwares now in use by US Special Operations Command J-23 Open Source Intelligence Branch along with the STRONG ANGEL TOOZL and a couple of other things.
The global standard for multinational information-sharing and sense-making is in the process of being designed, funded, and distributed. If you think you have something relevant to that, generally only open source software will be considered, get in touch with any of the individuals above.
Twitter Teams with Haiti Telco To Provide Free Text Tweets
WIRED 22 February 2010
Text messages have already raised $32 million for Haiti relief. Now Twitter is partnering with the devastated nation’s dominant telco to provide free text Tweets to Haitians so they can better keep in touch with each other and the outside world.
“Kevin Thau and our mobile team have recently arranged free SMS tweets for Digicel Haiti customers,” Twitter co-founder Biz Stone writes on the company’s blog. “To activate the service, mobile phone users in Haiti can text follow @oxfam to 40404. Accounts are created on the fly and any account can be followed this way.”
The move is much more than a gesture, as it might seem in place where limitless text plans abound and the standard of living is much higher. Under Digicel’s pre-paid plan Haitians pay $0.08 to text locally, $0.15 to text internationally and $0.23 to send an MMS. But considering that the country’s per capita income is about $1,300, that would be the equivalent of $2.46, $4.62 and a whopping $7.07 in the U.S. (which had a 2008 per capita income of about $40,000).
As has become almost routine now, the initial flood of information and pictures to emerge from the disaster zone reached the world via Twitter, and the use of texting is an especially crucial lifeline in the underdeveloped world.
Phi Beta Iota: BRAVO TWITTER! Who would have thought Haiti would be the silver lining for the poor. At one stroke Twitter hass connected scharitable giving from the 80% that do not normally give, with the bottom-up needs of the poor articulated via Twitter for free. Now if Twitter can team with others such as Nokia, Microsoft, and IMB to offer free cell phones to the five billion poor, with back office harvesting of the data and a global grid of volunteer translator educators in 183 languages, we save the world quick time.
Unlike Facebook, whose builders strive to make it an ever more organized social network, Twitter seems to thrive on being a jumble. It is an egalitarian sort of mess: Twitter does not sort its users into categories, does not tag some as celebrities, does not map out who does lunch with whom in the real world. You and Shaquille O’Neal are Twitter equals, only he has an extra 2.8 million followers.
There is also a Web site, Listorious listorious.com where volunteers publish personally chosen lists of posters to follow based on specific themes. But it is hit or miss. The Best of Photography list is a sharp collection of 29 eye-catching feeds, but Tech News People is a pile of 499 journalists for you to sort through.
So, how do you figure out who to follow? Start with a sweeping generalization: Twitter users can be grouped into different categories. For each, there is an automated site somewhere that lets you follow the genre without having to find and follow dozens, or even hundreds, of individual Twitter streams.
Phi Beta Iota: This article provides an extraordinary bridge to the future, when Twitter could become the real-time feed for inputs easily sorted in an infinite number of “back offices” that remix the information by threat, policy, player, and zip code. The difference between Google and Twitter is that Twitter empowers the end-user, Google ravages the end user (intellectually and metaphorically speaking).
Shortly after we posted the original Project 4636 info graphic, a few folks involved in the project got in touch to see if we could clarify the process. There are a lot of moving parts, many of which are constantly changing, and so the original graphic didn’t quite reflect the exact process as well as it could have. With that in mind, we worked with Josh Nesbit of Frontline SMS Medic and Nicolás di Tada of InSTEDD to make sure the graphic reflected the process as accurately as possible. The biggest update that we made is that InSTEDD’s Nuntium SMS Gateway and the Thomson Reuters Foundation Emergency Information System are now the first entities that receive and process incoming SMS’s. Everything else is pretty much the same.
In the absence of US interest, we are asking Brazil, China, and India to bring it up. Should a UNODIN working group be formed, it will certainly include African Union (AU), Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), and Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) counterpart groups, as the regional networks will do the heavy lifting and be the super-hubs for the UN (this is in contrast to a US DoD-based system in which military-to-military hubs would be established to do two-way reachback among the eight tribes in the respective nations). Both concepts are explored in the new book, INTELLIGENCE FOR EARTH and in two DoD briefings that are also relevant to the QDR.
In an era when changes to the Earth that used to take 10,000 years now take three;
In an era when all information in all languages all the time is the non-negotiable first step to achieving holistic understanding of the Earth’s system of systems as well as all the chaotic sub-systems;
In an era when the Nordics are far ahead of everyone else in thinking about Multinational, Multiagency, Multidisciplinary, Multidomain Information-Sharing and Sense-Making (M4IS2),
it is helpful to have a sense of what the U.S. Department of Defense is going with respect to it’s own Global Information Grid (GIG).
Below are a few headlines as well as pointers to a couple of devastatingly critical reviews from the General Accountability Office (GAO).
Phi Beta Iota has just one question: when, if ever, will DoD plan, program, budget, and implement for a world in which 96% of the information DoD needs to exploit is not secret, not in English, and not originating from a DoD device?
After the GAO reports, click on the Frog Left to read what we said to the National Research Council about the Army Communications Architecture in the early 1990’s and Frog Right to read about our recommendations for National Information Infrastructure (NII) cyber-security in the mid-1990’s.
DoD needs a Chief Knowledge Oficer (CKO)–someone that knows the difference between knowledge management, network management, content capture and exploitation, and the Holy Grail, organizational intelligence.
Tom Atlee’s research and thought innovations span from the conscious evolution of social systems to collaborative dynamics to a host of other ideas centering on group, social and political dynamics. He has worked with a number of leading authors on their books including ‘Awakening: The Upside of Y2K’. More recently Tom Atlee has been exploring and writing about collective dynamics.
Tom is one of the 8 US Collective Intelligence leaders, one of 25 (or more) global leaders of collective intelligence and bottom-up deliberative dialog democracy. He received the Golden Candle Award at OSS’04.
OSS ’04: To Tom Atlee, founder of the Co-Intelligence Institute, for his sustained leadership in the vanguard of an informed democracy.His book, The Tao of Democracy: Using Co-Intelligence to Create a World that Worlds for All is in the best traditions of Thomas Jefferson, who said “A Nation’s best defense is an educated citizenry.”
It can safely be said that he has had more influence than any other person on the migration of the original Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) movement away from serving governments and toward achieving its righteous role as public intelligence in the public interest.
This is the seminal work in what the author has long named “information mapping.” Posted as a public service with permission of the author, under Creative Commons license. No commercial exploitation is permitted without documented consent of the author.
Book intended to be read two pages at a time. The author suggests printing by the chapter, and then reading with even pages to the left and odd pages to the right, two pages at a time.