from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
Volume 2004, Issue No. 104
November 24, 2004
THE COLLAPSE OF INTELLIGENCE REFORM Psychoanalysis, wrote Viennese polemicist Karl Kraus, is itself the mental illness that it proposes to cure. Similarly, "intelligence reform" has now come to embody many of the defects that it was presumably intended to rectify, including irreconcilable priorities, lack of accountability, and contempt for democratic decisionmaking. Neither the unanimous recommendations of the bipartisan 9/11 Commission nor the subsequent months of public deliberation were sufficient to dislodge the intelligence bureaucracy and its congressional allies from their entrenched positions. Yet the failure by Congress to approve an intelligence reform bill also comes as a relief, because the final version of the bill contained numerous unexamined and objectionable provisions that were inconsistent with the 9/11 Commission recommendations. Among others, the bill endorsed the false claim that disclosure of the intelligence budget total is inconsistent with national security, a claim that is refuted annually by the United Kingdom, Canada, the Netherlands and other countries, all of which routinely publish their intelligence expenditures. With the collapse of congressional deliberation, the White House has stepped in energetically to fill the void, proposing a massive expansion of CIA personnel. "I direct you to implement within the CIA measures to... increase, as soon as feasible, the number of fully qualified, all-source analysts by 50 percent... [and to] increase, as soon as feasible, the number of fully qualified officers in the Directorate of Operations by 50 percent," President Bush wrote in a November 23 memorandum to the Director of Central Intelligence:
- THE COLLAPSE OF INTELLIGENCE REFORM
- CRS ON NAVY FORCE STRUCTURE
- NAVY DIRECTIVE ON FOREIGN DISCLOSURE
- MCCAIN ON BOEING TANKER LEASE
- MANHATTAN PROJECT PHYSICIST ROBERT BACHER
CRS ON NAVY FORCE STRUCTURESeveral new reports from the Congressional Research Service address aspects of U.S. Navy force structure. "Navy-Marine Corps Amphibious and Maritime Prepositioning Ship Programs: Background and Oversight Issues for Congress," November 15, 2004:
NAVY DIRECTIVE ON FOREIGN DISCLOSUREU.S. Navy policy on the disclosure of classified information to foreign governments is set forth in a new Secretary of the Navy Instruction. See SECNAVINST 5510.34A, "Disclosure of Classified Military Information and Controlled Unclassified Information to Foreign Governments, International Organizations, and Foreign Representatives," October 8, 2004:
MCCAIN ON BOEING TANKER LEASEIn an unusually vigorous and confrontational display of congressional oversight, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) last week described how U.S. Air Force officials and the Boeing Corporation colluded on a contract to supply aerial-refueling tanker aircraft that would have cost taxpayers unnecessary billions of dollars.
MANHATTAN PROJECT PHYSICIST ROBERT BACHERRobert Bacher, a leading Manhattan Project physicist and later a member of the Atomic Energy Commission, died last week.
Secrecy News is written by Steven Aftergood and published by the Federation of American Scientists.
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