Domestic Intelligence Community Analysis

Decent Essays

How secure is the United States from domestic terrorists? Is there a perception in the US of zero-tolerance for terrorism attacks on U.S. soil? If so then, how much capital and freedom are American’s willing to finance and surrender for this ultra-low risk, high-cost insurance policy? The type of insurance policy that guarantees 100% protection against terrorism within our borders will be expensive both in terms of dollars and freedoms lost. As we move beyond the events of September 11, 2001, these questions continue to be asked at all levels of government as budgets shrink and civil libertarians balk at violations of their Fourth Amendment rights. What is the proper structure and span of control for federal, state and local law enforcement …show more content…

Additionally, would streamlining the sharing of this information both vertically and horizontally at the federal, state and local levels improve efficiencies, effectiveness, and operability? There are almost 50 agencies from the President down to the local level that have “fingers in the pie” so to speak in the domestic intelligence gathering community. This paper will examine the complexity and inherent barriers within the domestic intelligence community from the federal to the state, local, tribal, and territorial (SLTT) levels, then analyze the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) and what appears to be a lack of unity amongst the disparate organizations at both the federal and SLTT levels, and finally assess the levels of training and operational effectiveness to evaluate the overall performance efficiency of the intelligence community at the enterprise level. A way forward is also presented at the end of each section to provide suggested …show more content…

For example, the common theme from the state fusion center construct is once you have seen one fusion center organizational construct; you have seen one fusion center organizational construct. There is currently a network of 78 fusion centers across most states and large urban areas. All are set up and run differently by the state with DHS oversight and grant funding. Seventy-eight different constructs, operating procedures, and systems are not conducive to the local level intelligence community effectively delivery relevant information and inputs to the federal intelligence agencies. Business Executives for National Security (BENS) research shows that very few fusion centers are collocated with federal entities like the JTTF, FBI Field Intelligence Groups or Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). Many of these federal agencies and the fusion centers are located within the same cities so it does not make sense why they wouldn’t be collocated if efficiencies could be realized. Several IC agencies at the federal and SLTT levels have similar functions in terms of collecting information that could help law enforcement at all levels pursue criminals and potential terrorist threats. This would help eliminate artificial walls/boundaries; eliminate redundant/overlapping systems, improve collaboration; build relationships and trust which would stimulate more robust sharing.

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