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There are great benefits to connectedness, but we haven't wrapped our minds around the costs.

Crafting a Revolution with the Brother of the Macintosh
Topic: Human Computer Interaction 1:41 am EDT, Jul 21, 2004

There are currently two genres in interface design: graphical user interfaces and command line interfaces. Neither is exemplary. GUIs are slow to use and CLIs are hard to learn. THE synthesizes the best parts of these two ideas into a framework that creates an interface which is both easy to learn and efficient to use.

To anyone watching, it seems like magic. To a user, it becomes indispensable.

Crafting a Revolution with the Brother of the Macintosh

Reforming the Culture at CIA
Topic: Politics and Law 9:23 am EDT, Jul 20, 2004

By now, almost everyone knows that the CIA is a mess. Almost everyone knows that what it needs is a top-to-bottom overhaul.

Almost everyone is wrong.

Without question, the intelligence community needs fixing. Unfortunately, the debate over reforming the CIA seems to be going off track. Nothing makes Washington's policy wonks more comfortable than rearranging an organization chart.

Reforming the Culture at CIA

The Problem With the CIA
Topic: Politics and Law 9:15 am EDT, Jul 20, 2004

Bill Casey broke all the rules at CIA. It's time to find another Bill Casey.

The Problem With the CIA

Learning to Think, and Live
Topic: Education 8:57 am EDT, Jul 20, 2004

Why aren't there more scholars who teach students to be generalists, to see the great connections? Instead, the academy encourages squirrel-like specialization.

Too many universities have become professionalized information-transmission systems, when teaching should instead be this sort of relationship between the experienced and the young, on whom little now is lost.

Learning to Think, and Live

The Duke In His Domain
Topic: Movies 9:16 pm EDT, Jul 18, 2004

Marlon Brando, who was considered by many to be one of the greatest actors in American movie history, died on July 1st, at the age of eighty.

Here, from 1957, is a long Profile of Brando by Truman Capote.

The Duke In His Domain

Keeping Pace with the Revolution in Military Affairs
Topic: Military 9:12 pm EDT, Jul 18, 2004

In Operation Iraqi Freedom, the world witnessed a progress report on the revolution in military affairs (RMA). The performance of US forces in the major combat phase of the operation in Iraq demonstrated the ability of institutions functioning within standard bureaucratic, hierarchical structures to operate beyond those structures.

To put it bluntly, US forces in Iraq leapt past jointness into networked operating models.

The challenge to the Intelligence Community is to keep pace with the significant flow of change emanating from the Department of Defense.

Keeping Pace with the Revolution in Military Affairs

The Man in the Snow White Cell
Topic: Civil Liberties 9:10 pm EDT, Jul 18, 2004

The war on terror is frustrating and confusing.

A college classmate of mine, someone who knows I am a retired CIA operations officer, recently expressed to me his frustration with the pace of the war on terror.

Our current war on terror is by no means the first such war our nation has fought, and our interrogation efforts against terrorist suspects in the United States, Afghanistan, and Guantanamo Bay are (hopefully) based on lessons learned from the experiences of past decades.

This article details one particularly instructive case from the Vietnam era.

Update: This article is now here, owing to the CIA's move to site-wide use of SSL.

The Man in the Snow White Cell

The Intelligence Community: 2001-2015
Topic: Politics and Law 9:06 pm EDT, Jul 18, 2004

(Editor's note: The authors intend this article to provoke a broad discussion of the role of intelligence in a constitutional republic during an era of accelerating change and terrible new dangers.)

Over the past decade, commission upon commission has urged reform of the loose confederation that is the US Intelligence Community. Opposed by implacable champions of the status quo, precious few of these commissions have provoked meaningful change.

This is a paper about decisions that must be made now. The problems we face are immediate and compelling. If we cannot identify effective responses to these challenges now, the shape of the future will evolve in ever more dangerous and unknown directions.

Are we capable of proactive reform, or will change in intelligence practices and policies require yet another unforeseen disaster? History argues for the latter, but the nation demands that we continue to strive for the former.

The Intelligence Community: 2001-2015

Intelligence Reform: Less Is More
Topic: Politics and Law 9:04 pm EDT, Jul 18, 2004

How can we improve the nation's spy agencies?

By concentrating on the basics and building the capabilities we need to defeat today's threats.

Commissions often have the opposite of their intended effect -- they stall reforms rather than facilitate them.

Creating czars, rearranging organizations, and assigning new authorities are all tempting. Alas, all these proposals may seem reasonable, but none of them address the most important problem facing US intelligence.

Intelligence reform ought to concentrate on creating new capabilities and removing obstacles that keep us from using our existing capabilities effectively.

Bruce Berkowitz is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution. This article appears in the Hoover Digest.

Intelligence Reform: Less Is More

How Not To Reform Intelligence
Topic: Politics and Law 8:47 pm EDT, Jul 18, 2004

... we can expect another round of proposals to reorganize US intelligence agencies ... They deserve serious consideration and, in some cases, prompt action.

There is, however, at least one really bad idea: reviving the old standby suggestion of creating a director of National Intelligence. On the surface the approach may look logical, but the reality in Washington would be a far different scenario.

The way we do foreign intelligence should not be fodder for political campaigns.

Robert M. Gates served as deputy director of Central Intelligence under President Reagan and as director under President George H.W. Bush. This editorial was published in the September 3, 2003 edition of The Wall Street Journal.

How Not To Reform Intelligence

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