11 March 2015

The Strauss and Clements Centers were represented by Intelligence Studies Project Director Steve Slick at a March 3, 2015 symposium on A Decade of IC Integration & The Challenges Ahead hosted in Arlington, Virginia by the Intelligence and National Security Alliance. The March symposium in the Washington area followed on INSA’s participation in the October 2014 Clements, Strauss, ISP event at the University of Texas-Austin, Intelligence Reform and Counterterrorism after a Decade: Are We Smarter and Safer? which brought together leading intelligence and counterterrorism officials, policymakers, and scholars.

INSA J3912 154 website

(From left to right: Steve Slick, James Cartwright, David Shedd, Joan Dempsey, Gregory Treverton, and John McLaughlin)

The INSA symposium included keynote addresses by Sen. Susan Collins, a co-sponsor of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004, and Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper. Slick moderated a panel including former Vice-Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. (Ret) James Cartwright, former Acting DIA Director David Shedd, former Deputy Director of Central Intelligence for Community Management, Joan Dempsey, National Intelligence Council Chairman, Gregory Treverton, and former Acting Director of Central Intelligence, John McLaughlin. The panel was asked to share perspectives of senior practitioners regarding the last decade’s intelligence reform efforts. Slick clarified that change in U.S. intelligence started immediately in the hours following the September 11, 2001 attacks rather than three/four years later when the IRTPA was passed and the ODNI established. He added that the U.S. IC can be improved through strong, centralized leadership but to unlock the full benefits of these reforms the community must accelerate programs to change the IC’s predominant culture like “joint duty” service requirements and that future presidents must pay closer attention when making senior intelligence and national security appointments to ensure the group shares a common approach to intelligence and will work well together as a team.

In her remarks, Ms Dempsey expressed an equal degree of optimism over the long term benefits of intelligence reform, and offered a guarded assessment of the current health of the “intelligence industrial base” informed by her current management responsibilities at Booz, Allen, Hamilton. General Cartwright described the intelligence implications of the recent Department of Defense review, while Dr. Treverton expressed confidence that the IC was making progress in more fully exploiting for predictive intelligence purposes the mass of data now available on social networks.

ISP and INSA are currently exploring new areas for collaboration between the organizations.