Search: The Future of OSINT [is M4IS2-Multinational]

COIN20 Trip Report

Paradise Found

The future of OSINT is M4IS2.

The future of Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) is Multinational, Multifunctional, Multidisciplinary, Multidomain Information-Sharing & Sense-Making (M4IS2).

The following, subject to the approval of Executive and Congressional leadership, are suggested hueristics (rules of thumb):

Rule 1: All Open Source Information (OSIF) goes directly to the high side (multinational top secret) the instant it is received at any level by any civilian or military element responsive to global OSINT grid.  This includes all of the contextual agency and mission specific information from the civilian elements previously stove-piped or disgarded, not only within the US, but ultimately within all 90+ participating nations.

Rule 2: In return for Rule 1, the US IC agrees that the Department of State (and within DoD, Civil Affairs) is the proponent outside the wire, and the sharing of all OSIF originating outside the US IC is at the discretion of State/Civil Affairs without secret world caveat or constraint.  OSIF collected by US IC elements is NOT included in this warrant.

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments Off
Nov 25

1988-2009 OSINT-M4IS2 TECHINT Chronology

Rock ON, Dude

Steele as Wild Card Speaker

Phi Beta Iota: This started as a short list for the various college and university engineering students that have dialed in, but as we got into it, it became more of a “situational awareness” inventory pulling together both technical “solutions” none of which have been integrated yet, and analytic “requirements” none of which have been satisfied yet.

$75 billion a year for secret intelligence, and we still do not have an analytic desktop toolkit, all-source geospatially and historically and cultural astute back office processing, or global reach to all humans, all minds, all the time.  Sucks for us.  Let’s see what the Smart Mob can do….

We specifically invite suggestions in the Comments for removing items from this list, or for adding items from within this website or from any other website.  This is now a work zone.  Steele is available to visit any engineering workshop and especially those working on bottom-up clouds like Swarm DPL (transparently scalable distributed programming language).

See also About the Idea, Articles, Briefs, Handbooks, and Historic Contributions. Use the Menu–everything on this stie responds to “OSINT” that is not a good search term.  Rock on!

TOTALLY TECH:

2009 Arnold Google: The Digital Gutenberg

2008 Memoranda: Policy-Budget Outreach Tool

2006  USSOCOM Software List and STRONG ANGEL TOOZL

2006 Morville (UK) Ambient Findability Massive Scale Beyond Your Imagination A Recommedned Approach to Creating the World Brain with Instant Recall

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments Off
Oct 20

Monograph: The U.S. Intelligence Community and Foreign Policy Getting Analysis Right

Categories: Analysis,Monographs
Free Online

Free Online

This monograph by Dr. Kenneth Lieberthal, a PDF of 81 pages, is just out (September 2009) from the China Center of the Brookings Institute.  In its area of specific focus, getting analysis right, it is a solid B+, short of an A because it continues the unilateralist mind-set that eschews both full engagement with the other seven tribes of intelligence, and with multinational governments, corporations, and non-profit organizations that do not wish to share secrets but are willing to share substantive knowledge.

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments Off
Sep 16

Review: A Time to Fight–Reclaiming a Fair and Just America

Tags:

Jim WebbUnusual, Thoughtful–Ideal as McCain’s Vice President, June 17, 2008

Jim Webb

The next President is going to have to tear down the US military, resurrect the atrophied civilian instruments of national power, and recreate the U.S. government in a manner that allows us to eliminate the debt and the deficit while waging peace and successfully nailing isolated organized crime, corporate corruption, and individual terrorists.

This means that a Democrat need not apply (less Senator Sam Nunn as either Vice President or Secretary-General for National Security, overseeing Defense, State, and Justice). As I put this book down I was thinking to myself, estranged Republican that I am: “this guy is too good to be a Democrat (or a Republican!).” I stand with Senator Hagel who is calling for a new party and an end to the two-party spoils system How about Bloomberg-Webb? Or Bloomberg-Powell with Nunn at Defense, Hagel at State, and Webb as Chief of Staff?

I take away one star because despite the candor and the reflective tone, the surprising but welcome comments against both the military-industrial complex and the prison complex (most of which is based on marijuane and is used to create slaves for the corporations running the prisons), the author did not offer a strategic framework.

He mentions Tony Zinni with favor, and he does a good job of suggesting that many generals did in fact try to talk the civilian leadership out of the elective occupation on attack, but I for one do not buy the latter. What they should have done was had Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz arrested and turned over to Congress, and told Dick Cheney to go fly a kite.

It is my personal view that the Democratic and Republican parties are dead. A new political demographic is emerging in America, one that demands multiple parties, an end to winner take all control of either the Executive or any half of Congress, and an end to “party line” treason.

Jim Webb is not a Democrat. He is, as Ike so famously said in answer to Marshall’s question, an American. It is just possible we may have found a leader for a new era, an era that demands the leader engage all of us in conversation, and not lead so much as facilitate and nurture. See the images I load above.

Right now, Chuck Hagel, Joe Biden, and Jim Webb are people I respect, and I hope they, rather than the staff pukes that do not read and have never operated overseas, have the necessary influence to draw our new map of the world. Combine them with Joe Nye, Tony Zinni, and a handful of others who have not sold their soul to the beltway bandits, and we just might have what it takes to fight smart.

This is not a political book. This is more akin to public philosophy aloud.

See also:
The Cultural Creatives: How 50 Million People Are Changing the World
The Two Percent Solution: Fixing America’s Problems in Ways Liberals and Conservatives Can Love
The Radical Center: The Future of American Politics
Society’s Breakthrough!: Releasing Essential Wisdom and Virtue in All the People
How to Change the World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas, Updated Edition
The Tao of Democracy: Using Co-Intelligence to Create a World That Works for All
Public Philosophy: Essays on Morality in Politics
Revolutionary Wealth: How it will be created and how it will change our lives
The World Cafe: Shaping Our Futures Through Conversations That Matter
Collective Intelligence: Creating a Prosperous World at Peace

Comments Off
Jul 4

Review: Assessing the Tradecraft of Intelligence Analysis

TradecraftDisappointing, Some Value, October 22, 2008

Gregory F. Treverton

There are six (6) pages in this work that held my attention: pages 11-12 (Table 2.2 Analytic Concerns, by Frequency of Mention); page 14 (Figure 3.1, A Pyramid of Analytic Tasks); page 20 (Table 3.1, Wide Range of Analytical Tools and Skills Required); page 34 (Figure 5.1, Intelligence Analysis and Information Types), and page 35 (Table 5.1, Changing Tradecraft Characteristics). Print them off from the free PDF copy online (search for title).

My first review allotted two stars, on the second complete reading I decided that was a tad harsh because I *did* go through it twice, so I now raise it to three stars largely because pages 11-12 were interesting enough to warrant an hour of my time (see below). This work reinvents the wheel from 1986, 1988, 1992, etcetera, but the primary author is clearly ignorant of all that has happened before, and the senior author did not bother to bring him up to speed (I know Greg Treverton knows this stuff).

Among many other flaws, this light once over failed to do even the most cursory of either literature or unclassified agency publication (not even the party line rag, Studies in Intelligence). Any book on this topic that is clueless about Jack Davis and his collected memoranda on analytic tradecraft, or Diane Webb and her utterly brilliant definition of Computer Aided Tools for the Analysis of Science and Technology (CATALYST), is not worthy of being read by an all-source professional. I would also have expected Ruth Davis and Carol Dumaine to be mentioned here, but the lack of attribution is clearly a lack of awareness that I find very disturbing.

I looked over the bibliography carefully, and it confirmed my evaluation. This is another indication that RAND (a “think tank”) is getting very lazy and losing its analytic edge. In this day and age of online bibliography citation, the paucity of serious references in this work is troubling (I wax diplomatic).

Here are ten books–only one of mine (and all seven of mine are free online as well as at Amazon):

Informing Statecraft
Bombs, Bugs, Drugs, and Thugs: Intelligence and America’s Quest for Security
Best Truth: Intelligence in the Information Age
Early Warning: Using Competitive Intelligence to Anticipate Market Shifts, Control Risk, and Create Powerful Strategies
The Art and Science of Business Intelligence Analysis (Advances in Applied Business Strategy,)
Analysis Without Paralysis: 10 Tools to Make Better Strategic Decisions
Strategic and Competitive Analysis: Methods and Techniques for Analyzing Business Competition
Lost Promise
Still Broken: A Recruit’s Inside Account of Intelligence Failures, from Baghdad to the Pentagon
The New Craft of Intelligence: Personal, Public, & Political–Citizen’s Action Handbook for Fighting Terrorism, Genocide, Disease, Toxic Bombs, & Corruption.

On the latter, look for “New Rules for the New Craft of Intelligence” that is free online as a separate document. Both Davis and Webb can be found online because I put them there in PDF form.

The one thing in this book that was useful, but badly presented, was the table of analyst concerns across nine issues that did not include tangible resources, multinational sense-making, or access to NSA OSINT.

Below is my “remix” of the table to put it into more useful form:

54% Quality of Intelligence
54% Tools of intelligence/analysis
43% Staffing
43% Intra-Community collaboration and data sharing
41% Collection Issues
38% Evaluation
32% Targeting Analysis
30% Value

Above are the categories with totals (first initial below connects to above). The top four validate the DNI’s priorities and clearly need work.

32% T Targeting Analysis is important
30% V Redefine intelligence
30% Q Analysis too captive to current
30% To Directed R&D for analytic technology needed
27% T Targeting needs prioritization
27% S Analyst training important and insufficient
22% V Uniqueness
22% E PDB problematic as metric
22% To “Tools” of intelligence analysis are poor
22% To “Tools” limit analysis and limited by culture

The line items above are for me very significant. We still do priority based collection rather than gap-driven collection, something I raised on the FIRCAP and with Rick Shackleford in 1992. Our analysts (most of them less than 5 years in service) are clearly concerned about both a misdirection of collection and of analysis, and a lack of tools–this 22 years after Diane Webb identified the 18 needed functionalities and the Advanced Information Processing and Analysis Steering Group (AIPASG) found over 20 different *compartmented* projects, all with their own sweetheart vendor, trying to create “the” all-source fusion workstation.

19% C S&T underused, needs understanding
16% E Critical and needs improvement
14% E Assess performance qualitatively
14% Q Quality of analysis is a concern
14% Q Intelligence focus too narrow
14% S Language, culture, regional are big weaknesses
11% A Leadership
11% L Must be improved
11% Q Problem centric vice regional
11% Q Global coverage is important
11% C Open source critical, need new sources
11% I Lack of leadership and critical mass impair IC-wide
11% I IC information technology infrastructure needed
11% I Non-traditional source agencies need more input
8% V Unclear goals prevail
8% T Targetting analysis needs attn+
8% C Collection strategies/methods outdated
8% S Concern over lack of staff or surge capability
8% S Intelligence Community-wide curriculum desireable
8% I Should NOT pursue virtual wired network
8% I Security is a concern for virtual and sharing
5% E Evaluation not critical
5% Q Depth versus breadth an issue
5% Q Greater client context needed
5% C Law enforcement has high potential
5% S Analytic corps is highly trained better than ever
5% S Career track needs building
5% I Stovepiping is a problem, need more X-community
5% I Should pursue virtual organization and wired network
3% V Newsworthy not intelligence
3% L Radical transformation needed
3% E Metrics are not needed
3% E Evaluation is negative
3% E Audits are difficult
3% Q Long term shortfalls overstated
3% Q Global coverage too difficult
3% T Targeting can be left to collectors
3% C All source materially lacking
3% C Need to guard against evidence addiction
3% C Need to take into account “feedback”
3% S Should train stovepipe analysts not IC analysts
3% S Language and cultural a strength

For the rest, not now, but three at the bottom trouble me: the analysts do not have the appreciation for feedback; they do not understand how lacking they are in sources; and they don’t know enough to realize that radical transformation is needed.

On balance, I found this book annoying, but two pages ultimately provocative.

Comments Off
Oct 22

Review: Dark Alliance–The CIA, the Contras, and the Crack Cocaine Explosion

Tags:

Dark AlliancdCIA Case Officer from Central American Era Validates This Book, June 9, 2007

Gary Webb

I am probably the only reviewer who was a clandestine case officer (three back to back tours), who participated in the Central American follies as both a field officer and a desk officer at CIA HQS, who is also very broadly read.

With great sadness, I must conclude that this book is truthful, accurate, and explosive.

The book lacks some context, for example, the liberal Saudi funding for the Contras that was provided to the National Security Council (NSC) as a back-door courtesy.

There are three core lessons in this book, supported by many books, some of which I list at the end of this review:

1) The US Government cannot be trusted by the people. The White House, the NSC, the CIA, even the Justice Department, and the Members of Congress associated with the Administration’s party, are all liars. They use “national security” as a pretext for dealing drugs and screwing over the American people.

2) CIA has come to the end of its useful life. I remain proud to have been a clandestine case officer, but I see now that I was part of the “fake” CIA going through the motions, while extremely evil deeds were taking place in more limited channels.

3) In the eyes of the Nicaraguan, Guatemalan, and Honduran people, among many others, the US Government, as represented by the CIA and the dark side Ambassadors who are partisan appointees rather than true diplomats, is evil. It consorts with dictators, condones torture, helps loot the commonwealths of others, runs drugs, launders money, and is generally the bully on the block.

I have numerous notes on the book, and will list just a few here that are important “nuggets” from this great work:

1) The CIA connection to the crack pandemic could be the crime of the century. It certainly destroys the government’s moral legitimacy in the eyes of the people.

2) The fact that entrepreneur Ricky Ross went to jail for life, while his supplier, Nicaraguan Blandon, was constantly protected by CIA and the Department of Justice, is a travesty.

3) Nicaragua, under Somoza, was the US Government’s local enforcer, and CIA was his most important liaison element. As long as we consort with 44 dictators (see Ambassador Palmer’s “The Real Axis of Evil,” we should expect to be reviled by the broader populations.

4) I believe that beginning with Henry Kissinger, the NSC and the CIA have had a “eugenics” policy that considers the low-income blacks to be “expendable” as well as a nuisance, and hence worthy of being targeted as a market for drugs to pull out what income they do have.

5) I believe that CIA was unwitting of the implications of crack, but that Congress was not. The book compellingly describes the testimony provided to Congress in 1979 and again in 1982, about the forthcoming implications of making a cocaine derivative affordable by the lowest income people in our Nation.

6) The Administration and Congress, in close partnership with the “mainstream media,” consistently lied, slandered witnesses to the truth, and generally made it impossible for the truth to be “heard.”

7) The ignorance of the CIA managers about the “ground truth” in Nicaragua and Honduras, and their willingness to carry out evil on command from the White House, without actually understanding the context, the true feelings of the people, or even the hugely detrimental strategic import of what they were about to do to Los Angeles, simply blow me away. We need to start court-martialling government employees for being stupid on the people’s payroll.

8) CIA officers should not be allowed to issue visas. When they are under official cover they are assigned duty officer positions, and the duty officer traditionally has access to the visa stamp safe for emergencies (because the real visa officers are too lazy to be called in for an emergency).

9) I recently supported a movie on Ricky Ross, one that immediately won three awards in 2006 for best feature-length documentary, and I have to say, on the basis of this book, that Rick Ross was clearly not a gang member; was a tennis star and all-around good guy, was trying to make school grades; was disciplined, professional, and entrepreneurial. He did not create the cocaine, he did not smuggle it into the country, he simply acted on the opportunity presented to him by the US Government and its agent Blandon.

10) There is a connection between CIA, the private sector prison managers in the US, and prisoners. This needs a more careful look.

11) Clinton’s bodyguards (many of whom have died mysteriously since then) were fully witting of Bill and Hillary Clinton’s full engagement in drug smuggling into the US via Arkansas, and CIA’s related nefarious activities.

12) CIA not only provided post-arrest white washes for its drug dealers, but they also orchestrated tip-offs on planned raids.

13) Both local police departments, especially in California, and the US Government, appear to have a standard “loot and release” program where drug dealers caught with very large amounts of cash (multiple millions) are instantly freed in return for a quit claim on the money.

14) CIA Operations Officers (clandestine case officers) lied not just to the FBI and Justice, but to their own CIA lawyers.

15) DEA in Costa Rica was dirtier than most, skimming cash and protecting drug transports.

The book ends with a revelation and an observation.

The revelation: just prior to both the Contra drug deals and the CIA’s ramping up in Afghanistan, which now provides 80% of the world’s heroin under US administration, the CIA and Justice concluded a Memorandum of Understanding that gave CIA carte blanche in the drug business.. The author says this smacked of premeditation, and I agree.

The observation: here is a quote from page 452: ” …the real danger the CIA has always presented–unbridled criminal stupidity, clouded in a blanked of national security.”

Shame on us all. It’s time to clean house.

Lost History: Contras, Cocaine, the Press & ‘Project Truth’
The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade
Cocaine Politics: Drugs, Armies, and the CIA in Central America, Updated edition
The Big White Lie: The Deep Cover Operation That Exposed the CIA Sabotage of the Drug War : An Undercover Odyssey
Kill the Messenger: How the CIA’s Crack-Cocaine Controversy Destroyed Journalist Gary Webb
The Crimes of Patriots: A True Tale of Dope, Dirty Money, and the CIA
From BCCI to ISI: The Saga of Entrapment Continues
Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil
Breaking the Real Axis of Evil: How to Oust the World’s Last Dictators by 2025
Fog Facts : Searching for Truth in the Land of Spin (Nation Books)

Comments Off
Jun 9

History of Bureaucratic War on Public Intelligence (1992-2006)

Categories: History
Lipstick on the Pig

Lipstick on the Pig

2004

US

History Steele The OSINT Story 2.1 in RTF

2004

US

History Steele The OSINT Story 2.1 in Word Doc

1995

US

History Los Alamos Los Alamos Lab on OSINT

1995

US

History Simmons Congressman Simmons (then Major) on OSINT and DIA

1993

US

History Steele God, Man, and Information: Invited Rant to INTERVAL

1992

US

History IC IC Task Force Vision for OSINT

1992

US

History Steele CIM and Transformation (to Paul Strassman, DirInfo DoD)

1992

US

History Steele & USMC Derogatory Comments, Line by Line, on Decrepit IC Vision for OSINT

1992

US

History STIC STIC on OSINT

1992

US

History USMC USMC on OSINT

1992

US

History USMC USMC on IC  Survey re OSINT

1992

US

History USMC USMC Comments on IC Task Forces

1992

US

History USMC USMC Comment on IC OSINT

1992

US

History Wallner OSINT Requirements Memorandum

1991

US

History Harvard JFK Panel US Intelligence and American Enterprise

1989

US

History CIA/OSWR, Webb CATALYST (Computer Aided Tools for the Analysis of S&T)

1989

US

History Steele Operationalization Portion of Steele Thesis on Revolution

1989

US

History USMC USMC Response to IC Data Call on OSINT

1989

US

History USMC Core Documents on OSINT (186 Pages)
Comments Off
Jul 18

2001 Porter (US) Tools of the Trade: A Long Way to Go

1985 CATALYST Concept

1985 CATALYST Concept

In 1985-1986 an utterly brilliant woman, Diane Webb, working with Dennis McCormich and under the oversight of Gordon Oehler, established the definitive requirements statement for an all-source analytic workstation.  We still do not have such a workstation, and the lack of integrity among intelligence community leaders and vendors is the reason.  No one is willing to sponsor a generic Free/Open Source Software (F/OSS) solution that can be used by both all-source analysts and all external analysts.  DARPA STRONG ANGEL TOOZL is a start, but inadequate to the needs of all-source analysts dealing with multiple complex challenges.  Below is the best slide from a presentation to OSS ’01 by Claudia Porter from Austin Information Systems, who totally impressed the audience because unlike all other vendors trying desperately to propose “single-point technology solutions” that are nothing more than a deep hook that shuts the customer off from all other solutions, she examined where specific tools fit on a matrix of need.   Click on the slide to see the entire briefing. Click on Frog Right to see the list of softwares that the US Special Oprations Command J-23 (Open Source Branch) uses today, none of them integrated because the US Government refuses to cooperate with the OMB/GSA efforts–mandated by the White House–to find “common solutions.”  One day, Claudia Porter may get to direct a skunkworks with an anti-turst waiver from the Department of Commerce that achieves what we knew we needed in 1985.

Porter Slide Enhanced

Porter Slide Enhanced

SOCOM SW Cluster and TOOZL

SOCOM SW Cluster and TOOZL

Comments Off
Dec 22

2000 PRIMER on Open Sources & Methods

2000

SE

Training Bjore PRIMER: How InfoSphere Uses the Internet

2000

US

Training CSM PRIMER: Top Secret Kodak Moments in Space

2000

US

Training David PRIMER: Intelligence Analysis in a New Century

2000

US

Training Davis PRIMER: Compendium of Analytic Tradecraft Notes

2000

NL

Training Farace PRIMER: Gray Literature 2: Finding the Not Easily Found

2000

US

Training Klein PRIMER: Gray Literature 1: Finding the Needle in the Haystack

2000

US

Training Lanza PRIMER: Beyond the Internet (Slides)

2000

US

Training Lanza PRIMER: Beyond the Internet (Text)

2000

US

Training Rodriguez PRIMER: Briefing on DIALOG

2000

US

Training Rodriguez PRIMER: Chart Comparing DIALOG to Internet (At the Time)

2000

US

Training Sacks PRIMER: Primary Research

2000

US

Training Sandman PRIMER  Applied Human Intelligence

2000

US

Training Snowden PRIMER: Geospatial Intelligence Options

2000

US

Training Soule & Ryan PRIMER: Gray Literature 3: Technical Briefing

2000

US

Training Steele PRIMER: A Few Thoughts on the Internet (At the Time)

2000

US

Training Webb & Steele PRIMER: Integrated Analytic Toolkit Requirements
Comments Off
Jul 18

1989 Webb (US) CATALYST: Computer-Aided Tools for the Analysis of Science & Technology

CATALYST Paper

CATALYST Paper

When Diane Web reached the Office of Scientific and Weapons Research (OSWR) at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), she entered what John Perry Barlow called in a Forbes article “the gulag.”  Gray desks and rotten tools–she had better computers and better analytic tools as a graduate student prior to joining the CIA.  With help from Dennis McCormick and under the oversight of Gordon Oehler, she devised CATALYST, shown below in obth the original version and the enhanced version that Robert Steele acreated on top of contributions from Bill Ruh (CISCO AON).  Click on the Frog to reach the SOCOM J-23 list of unintegrated softwares, and the DARPA STRONG ANGEL TOOZL initiative.  Although dated 1989, this was devised in 1984 and took the usual four years of editing at CIA before it finally got into the public domain.

SOCOM SW Cluster and TOOZL

SOCOM SW Cluster and TOOZL

Put bluntly, the USA will continue to be stupid at the strategic, operational, tactical, and technical levels because none of the money being provided by the taxpayer and spent by the so-called policymakers has any connection to reality understood in the context of access to all information in all languages all the time, a strategic analytic model for holistic analysis of all ten threats to humanity acorss all twelve policy budget and behavior domains; and a toolset for multinational, multiagency, multidisciplinary, multidomain information sharing and sense-making (M4IS2).

Original Concept

Original Concept

New Cloud Concept

New Cloud Concept

Comments Off
Oct 15