Sunday, January 18, 2009

U.S. Intel to Produce Sticky Web of Information on Citizens

America's outgoing Intelligence Chief informed the public of his agency's move to collect and integrate data on terror threats. The Jerusalem Post reported:

McConnell announced that a new policy that will require sharing of all finished intelligence and much of the raw information that feeds it across the agencies will be signed in the next few days. "It's the policy to hope that we would never repeat 9/11," McConnell said.

"I believe we failed the nation at 9/11. There was sufficient information in the system that had it been properly recognized, shared and considered, we probably would have reacted in a different way," He said.

He was talking about poor judgment demonstrated by intelligence and other government agencies before the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks on the United States.

I've never read a policy that requires "hope". I thought they outlined operational aims and procedures. Hasn't the country undertaken numerous efforts to improve intelligence? What's special about this change?

Under the coming system, he said, analysts in one agency will be able to do quick searches of classified intelligence and turn up almost every bit of data or analysis any other intelligence office has compiled on it. The small percentage of information that could reveal the identity of spies or secret methods of collection may be blocked from view, but the director's office can intercede to reveal that as well if a compelling case is made for it, McConnell said.

The difference in the amount of information available to analysts will be staggering, he said, and they will have access to raw information that they can weigh for themselves.

A staggering amount of information? From where, on whom? Access to raw information staff can weigh for themselves? We've seen the results of past intelligence errors, robbing people of their liberty and subjecting them to torture. This revelation isn't the least bit comforting for a Jeffersonian democracy. The Cray Black Widow is a strong sting in our Founding Fathers' vision.