Un articolo illuminante sull’attuale capacità dell’intelligence USA di penetrare i gruppi insurrezionali iraqeni…
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. intelligence is still struggling to understand the nature of Iraq’s insurgency more than two years after the fall of Saddam Hussein, U.S. intelligence chief John Negroponte said on Thursday.
Negroponte, a former ambassador to Iraq who became director of national intelligence five months ago, said not enough had been done to come to grips with the insurgents who by some estimates have killed more than 5,000 Iraqi civilians and security forces.
Some 1,780 U.S. troops have also died in Iraq since U.S. President George W. Bush declared an end to major combat operations.
"It’s a very, very difficult issue," Negroponte told an audience of intelligence officials in Washington.
"There’s no analytical issue that is more important, no intelligence issue more important, than understanding the nature of the insurgency in all of its aspects.
"There’s a desirability, a thirst really, to get as much fidelity about what is happening within the insurgency, and I think also a feeling that much more could still be done in terms of finding out now what the nature of that insurgency is," he said.
Negroponte was speaking at a Defense Department intelligence conference, where he also addressed the task of moving the 15-agency intelligence community further into an era of post-September 11, reform.
The Iraq insurgency, which U.S. forces have yet to stamp out despite repeated attempts, began months after the fall of Saddam Hussein in April 2003 and spans a disparate collection of groups from Baathists and former regime elements to the Al Qaeda-linked network of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
Negroponte’s remarks come at a time of growing concern about the spiral of violence in Iraq as voters prepare to cast ballots in a constitutional referendum on October 15.
Zarqawi recently raised the specter of widening civil unrest by declaring all-out war against Iraq’s Shi’ite population.
TERRORIST TRAINING GROUND
The CIA has also warned in a classified report that Iraq was becoming a more effective training ground for foreign terrorists than Afghanistan was during the war against Soviet occupation in the 1980s, which gave rise to Osama bin Laden’s al Qaeda.
"We’ve got major challenges in Iraq," Negroponte told his audience. "It’s (an issue) that occupied me when I was up there as ambassador, and continues to be one of great concern to me in this new position."
Negroponte took up his position in April as a result of congressionally enacted reforms aimed at overhauling the intelligence community after huge lapses over Iraq and the September 11, 2001, attacks.
He said U.S. intelligence also needed to assume greater risks in order to share more sensitive information with allies such Australia, Britain, Canada and New Zealand in order to address threats.
"Sometimes we’ve been a bit too categorical in withholding information from partners and allies," he explained.
Negroponte said that task of reforming the intelligence community’s culture would require a generation but pointed to early successes in the FBI’s creation of a national security division and the emergence of new intelligence centers devoted to counterterrorism and proliferation.
"It’s a challenging job to say the least," Negroponte said of his own position. "We’re up and running and I think we’re starting to have an impact."
Riflessione personale: l’articolo mi fa venire in mente che dovrei pure scrivere un articolo su Intelligence e controguerriglia (o Intelligence e MOUT… ma in tal caso diventerebbe un mezzo trattato… ). Adesso aggiungo un nuovo punto alla lista qui sotto…