1997 Congressional Hearings
OPENING STATEMENT BY CHAIRMAN RICHARD C. SHELBY:
SSCI OPEN HEARING ON CURRENT AND PROJECTED NATIONAL SECURITY THREATS TO THE
(Wednesday, 5 February 1997)
- The Committee will come to order.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the enactment of the National
Security Act of 1947 which established the post-World War II era
structure for our national defense and intelligence organizations --
including the creation of the Central Intelligence Agency.
- With this legislation, the CIA's Director was given the role of consolidating intelligence obtained by elements of other departments and agencies, usually referred to as the Intelligence Community, to support the vital national interests of this country.
Half a century later, the Intelligence Community's mission is more
important in some ways than it was in 1947. While the Cold War is over,
the U.S. confronts a host of threats including terrorism, the
proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems,
and the spread of illegal narcotics.
- In recent years, the Intelligence Community is increasingly being asked to justify its budget -- and therefore its role -- to the American public. This pressure for greater openness will persist for a long time to come. And this is, as it should be.
To the fullest extent consistent with the protection of sensitive sources
and methods, Americans should be made aware of what the Intelligence
Community is capable of accomplishing.
- This public hearing on the Intelligence Community's assessment of the national security threat to the United States is conducted in this spirit: to inform the American public about the threat to their country and their country's interests.
We have with us today Mr. George Tenet, Acting Director of the Central
Intelligence Agency; Lieutenant General Patrick Hughes, Director of the
Defense Intelligence Agency, and Assistant Secretary of State for
Intelligence and Research (INR) Ms. Toby Gati ("Gotti").
- We welcome you all to the Committee.
I would like to take a moment to note that Ms.Gati has recently been the
subject of a State Department Inspector General investigation regarding
allegations about improper disclosure of classified information. This
investigation concluded that the allegations were without merit. This
Committee has enjoyed a close and productive working relationship with
Assistant Secretary Gati -- a capable and respected public servant with
Acting Director Tenet will give his statement, and then we will open the
session to 5 minutes of questions from each Member of the Committee.
General Hughes and Ms. Gati will submit their written testimony for the
record, and are available to answer questions.
At the conclusion of this open session, we will recess and reconvene in SH-219 for a closed session to address Members questions regarding classified details supporting the witnesses open statements, and testimony.
- Vice Chairman Kerrey...
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