Here’s what caught our eye in the world of intelligence this week:
New information about the CIA reorganization shows that much of it is intended to combat the Islamic State. Five of the ten new “mission centers” will be tasked with combating ISIS, discount viagra discount with groups called “Near East, viagra usa ambulance ” “Europe and Eurasia,” “South and Central Asia,” and “Global Issues.” Each new division will have its own network of spies and analysts, but also linguists, cultural experts and computer analysts. Deputy Director Cohen said this type of collaboration will help with “targeting our operations against the areas in ISIL where we think there are vulnerabilities.”
A piece in Just Security addresses the disparity in reports that announced the killing of Nasir al-Wuhayshi. The first report told a story of the CIA “building a methodical case on his whereabouts over months from information collected through technical means.” The second report, which came a few days later, claimed the CIA did not know the strike would kill al-Wuhayshi. The authors of the piece fear this incident suggests “a total lack of concern for the possibility that anyone will ever hold officials accountable for their statements.”
The CIA’s chief information officer, Doug Wolfe, visited Silicon Valley and argued the Agency and Valley have a lot in common. Wolfe was explaining the agency’s interest in a new technology for data processing called Spark to the crowd in San Francisco. Spark allows businesses to analyze data much quicker and is supported on Amazon Web Services; where the new CIA cloud is built. Wolfe’s speech emphasized cooperation between the government and private sector; he called the cooperation “critically important.”
In an order released Friday, the FISA Court said the brief lapse of a few Patriot Act provisions would not prevent them from renewing the NSA’s powers. However the order did not say the court would renew the powers any time soon; it just said they could. In the order the FISA court also determined they did not need the advice of a new expert panel, despite it being its first ever opportunity to use the friend-of-the-court analysis. Without the input of the expert panel, the court only hears arguments from the government.
The chief of Germany’s BND foreign intelligence service is reorganizing the agency to provide more oversight to the agency and bring in external advisors. The head of BND, Gerhard Schindler, said he wanted to bring agents in field offices under central control, saying some of them have taken on “a life of their own.” Schindler also said the “administrative and technical supervision” of the agency needs to be significantly improved. In regards to the BNDs relationship with the NSA, Schindler said: “without this cooperation we wouldn’t be able to carry out our work.”