Intelligence

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F. Former Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) Desk Officer

(U) Committee staff contacted a former desk officer in the Office of the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Special Plans and NES A who had come to the Committee's attention through press accounts of the desk officer's experiences.

(U) The desk officer told Committee staff that she never worked the Iraq issue and had no direct knowledge of any attempts to pressure or coerce intelligence analysts. She obtained the information that she provided to Committee staff based on looking at the secret level intranet in the Pentagon and through discussions with colleagues.

(U) The desk officer told Committee staff that a DIA senior intelligence analyst had told her that he had been pressured by the Deputy Under Secretary to change a briefing he was giving on Iraq and that he refused to change the briefing because the intelligence did not support the Deputy Under Secretary's conclusion. She said that after this incident the senior analyst was excluded from bilateral exchange visits. Committee staff interviewed the DIA senior intelligence analyst who said that he had not been asked to change any briefings on Iraq, but said he was asked not to use the word "assassinations" when giving a brief on the Israeli Defense Force. He provided no information to show that he had been excluded from the bilateral visits because of his analysis.

(U) The desk officer told Committee staff that she believed there was a hostile environment between the Office of Special Plans and the DIA, but could not provide any examples of a hostile climate between anyone at the Office of Special Plans and the DIA, other than the senior analyst mentioned previously. She said that she believed talking points used by the Office of Special Plans exaggerated intelligence assessments, but she could not provide any examples of instances where the points differed from analysis at the time they were used.

(U) When asked whether she had any evidence of the Office of Special Plans attempting to pressure CIA analysts she said that she had heard the Deputy Under Secretary make negative comments about the CIA's analysis but said she could not say that the office pressured CIA. The desk officer also made several accusations that Administration policy speeches included information that was not supported by intelligence, specifically on issues such as the threat of Iraq's unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), alleged attempts to acquire uranium from Niger, and attempts to acquire aluminum tubes for use in a centrifuge enrichment program, but she was unaware that publicly released intelligence showed that the IC had in fact published finished intelligence products making each one of these assessments. She had no direct knowledge to support any claims that intelligence analysts were pressured and much of what she said is contradicted by information from other interviews and intelligence reporting.



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