Intelligence Failures and Political Realism

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Intelligence Failures and Political Realism Intelligence Failures: Following the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and Flight 93 on September 11th, 2001, U.S. security and intelligence leaders scrambled for an explanation. While a great many questions over what transpired on 9/11 remain unanswered even to this day, one certainty is that American intelligence experienced its most glaring historical failure since the attack on Pearl Harbor. How these intelligence failures transpired is, according to the 9/11 Commission's report as published in 2004, the product of two substantial conditions: first, that the U.S. intelligence community was highly splintered, decentralized and absent of coordination; second, that the CIA and other key security agencies had no clearly defined or actionable plan for defense against a terrorist attack or a campaign of such attacks. According to an article published by CNN in the wake of the 9/11 Commission's report publication, these conditions conspired to create a bureaucratic jumble within the security, defense and intelligence communities. The result, the article denotes, would be an absence of strategic engagement between different agencies and, consequently, an incapacity to draw critical connections between various strands of loose information. According to CNN (2004), "the CIA and FBI, in particular, were blasted in the wake of the 9/11 attacks by many lawmakers and experts for not sharing tips and
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