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Military Intelligence
Always Out Front

Military Intelligence provides timely, relevant, accurate and synchronized Intelligence and Electronic Warfare (IEW) support to leaders at all levels (tactical warfighting commander to strategic policy makers and the President) across the range of military operations. In war, IEW operations support the winning of battles and campaigns. In Low Intensity Conflicts, IEW operations support the promotion of peace, the resolution of conflict, and the deterrence of war. These operatins reduce uncertainty and risk to US Forces and permit the effective application of force.

Intelligence has been an essential element of Army operations during war as well as during periods of peace. In the past, requirements were met by personnel from the Army Intelligence and Army Security Reserve branches, two-year obligated tour officers, one-tour levies on the various branches, and Regular Army officers in the specialization programs. To meet the Army's increased requirement for national and tactical intelligence, an Intelligence and Security Branch was established in the Army effective July 1, 1962, by General Orders No. 38, July 3, 1962. On July 1, 1967, the branch was redesignated as Military Intelligence.

Strategic Intelligence encompasses all intelligence collection activities conducted at Echelons Above Corps (EAC). Strategic Intelligence analysts work at places like the Defense Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, the National Reconnaissance Agency, and at theater level commands like European Command (EUCOM) or Central Command (CENTCOM).The Strategic Intelligence analyst does both long-term and short-term analysis that can be in a number of different areas: Biographic Intelligence (getting the scoop on military leaders throughout the world); Economic Intelligence (analysis of the economic capabilities of other countries); Scientific and Technical Intelligence (analysis of the scientific and technical capabilities of other countries); Armed Forces Intelligences (analysis of the capabilities, limitations, structure, equipment, doctrine, tactics, future capabilities, etc. of other military forces); Political Intelligence (analysis of the political leadership, goals, policies, etc. of other countries); Sociological Intelligence (analysis of the societies and cultures of other countries). There are other components of Strategic Intelligence, but these give you an idea of some of the things it encompasses. MI officers generally don't begin to work in Strategic Intelligence assignments until they've reached the rank of captain and have successfully completed company command and S2 time.

All-Source Intelligence is what every intelligence officer starts off with. Graduates from OBC, you graduate as a 35D All-Source Intelligence Officer. OBC develops a strong foundational knowledge of all the intelligence disciplines, what their capabilities and limitations are, and how to use them to support the commander's intelligence needs. An All-Source Intelligence Officer can be considered the "Jack of all trades," with a good working knowledge of all the disciplines. An All-Source Intelligence Officer orchestrates multi-discipline collection management of intelligence assets; coordinates surevillance activities; you conduct Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield (IPB); analyzes the enemy's capabilities and their impact on the maneuver commander's plan; and ultimately understands the maneuver commander's intelligence requirements and know how to get the answers to the questions that need to be answered so that the commander's plan can be executed successfully. Many MI officers remain 35D All-Source Intelligence Officers, and don't specialize in any one particular intelligence discipline. 35D's have a solid understanding of all of the disciplines, and understand how to use them in support of the commander's intelligence needs.

Since the earliest wars, military commanders have always wanted to be able to "see over the next hill." Those who held the high ground, the commanding position, could see with their own eyes what the opposing army was doing and could concentrate forces at the enemy's weak points and often order a decisive attack. Imagery Intelligence (IMINT) is the intelligence discipline that lets commanders "see over the next hill." Satellites, spy planes, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), and even cameras are all tools of the trade in IMINT. IMINT allows us to take "pictures" of enemy formations, equipment, bases, people, etc., that we can then analyze to determine enemy intent and capability. The National Imagery and Mapping Association (NIMA) is the head proponent for IMINT, and the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) is another key player in the IMINT arena.

The essence of the Army's Counterintelligence mission is to support force protection. In general, the CI mission is focused on preventing the enemy from gaining intelligence on our own forces. CI does this in a number of ways. By its nature, CI is a multidiscipline function designed to defeat or degrade threat intelligence and targeting capabilities. CI operations support force protection through support to operations security (OPSEC), deception, and rear area operations across the range of military operations. CI personnel generally work in small teams, and play a key role in helping the commander successfully execute his mission. CI personnel play an integral role in developing and implementing deception plans that confuse and hinder the enemy's ability to determine friendly courses of action. CI personnel also play an extremely critical role in the acquisition of first-hand, primary source intelligence. CI personnel do this through interrogation of enemy prisoners, through surveillance operations, and through establishing and maintaining relationships with various people (known as sources) who provide intelligence on enemy capabilities and intent. Counterintelligence is one of the smaller intel disciplines, but certainly an important one.

Human Intelligence (HUMINT) is the oldest of the intelligence disciplines. HUMINT is particularly important because it can confirm, refute, or augment intelligence derived through other disciplines. HUMINT is a key contributor to the all-source picture of the battlefield. HUMINT is the intelligence derived from information collected from people and related documents, using passively and actively acquired human sources to gather information to answer intelligence requirements and to cross-cue other intelligence disciplines. HUMINT tasks include but are not limited to: Source operations using tactical and other developed sources; Liaison with host nation officials and allied counterparts Debriefing of civilian populace; Interrogation of enemy prisoners of war and detainees; and Exploitation of adversary and open-source documents, media, and material. The CIA is the overall manager of the national HUMINT collection program. Selection for HUMINT in MI is highly competitive, and only senior captains and majors are considered.

Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) results from collecting, locating, processing, analyzing, and reporting intercepted communications and noncommunications emitters. What does that mean? Basically, SIGINT is the intelligence derived from intercepting and analyzing either voice communications (like radio comms, phone comms, or any communications that involves the voice transmission), or electronics communications. Electronic comms can be radar transmissions or any type of communication that is non-voice. SIGINT is a powerful intelligence discipline, because it can provide near real time intelligence for the commander. Imagine if you could listen in on enemy radio traffic and hear the enemy discuss his operational plan as he's talking about would be able to develop a clear picture of the enemy's intent pretty quickly, right? Well, that's what SIGINT can provide!

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One Billion Americans: The Case for Thinking Bigger - by Matthew Yglesias

Page last modified: 05-07-2011 01:36:16 ZULU