Tag Archives: CIA

The Super Bowl: Jeez, Say Something

Jeez, Say Something

Janet “The American Commandant” Napolitano, the Secretary of Homeland Security, must be a hell of a football fan.  She’s employing the full might of the Department’s “If You See Something, Say Something” ™ public awareness campaign to secure Super Bowl XLVI.  Napolitano has toured the security operations at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, overseeing the additional security being brought in to screen cargo, secure the air space and provide security screening.

No less than the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Martin Dempsey has also delivered a Super Bowl message to the troops.  The Defense Logistics Agency began planning the left hook to Afghanistan in June.  They have now delivered thousands of pounds of mozzarella cheese sticks, jalapeno poppers, chicken mini bites, chicken wings, pork and beef meatballs, turkey wings, chili, pizza, french fries, onion rings, potato chips and non-alcoholic beer to wash it all down.   Ironic, I guess, that America’s warriors in the field will be the only Americans not drinking; but then so many aren’t old enough to drink.

And it isn’t just homeland security and the Pentagon who are involved.  The FBI and the National Counterterrorism Center are monitoring the intelligence.  I don’t know how many feds or intelligence people are involved in this year’s event, but for the last Patriots-Giants meeting in Super Bowl 42, according to a briefing I have, security included:

  •  300+ personnel working interior
  • 500+ personnel working exterior
  • 600+ specialty personnel available
  • 60+ agencies involved in planning
  • 24+ months of planning & preparation
  • 8 Interoperability Meetings specifically related to Super Bowl
    • 90+ attendees, 50+ agencies represented

Here how the Arizona battlefield looked then.

For last year’s Super Bowl, the combined federal agencies issued a nine page “for official use only” intelligence report, suggesting properly cleared personnel should consult the further intelligence available on the Secret-level SIPRNET and the Top Secret-level JWICS.

But here was the punchline; the report said: “The FBI, DHS, the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM), the Terrorist Screening Center (TSC), and Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex-area (DFW-area) law enforcement agencies have identified no credible terrorist threats to Super Bowl XLV or its associated events and venues.  Nevertheless, the Super Bowl’s high profile could make it a desirable target for violent organizations or individuals seeking to exploit intense media coverage to promote their cause.”

I know, I know, this is important, this Superist of American battles.

Today in Secret History: February 4 – What’s in the Word Selected?

What’s in the Word Selected?

Why the continuing use of euphemism in foreign affairs when everyone knows?   For anyone who even has a passing interest in the subject, the famous words “such other duties” contained in the 1947 National Security Act probably ring a bell.  This was how the CIA was legally granted the authority to conduct covert action without the words ever being officially uttered.  Everyone knew it, but yet Congress conspired.

These days, the National Clandestine Service of the CIA states on its official website that it conducts “covert action.”   So I guess a lot has changed.

What hasn’t though is the euphemism.  On February 4, 2003, the Joint Chiefs of Staff issued a revised Unified Command Plan (UCP), the Presidentially-approved document that assigns responsibilities to the military.  UCP 2002 with Changes 1 and 2 was the first major promulgation of a new directive after 9/11, and it assigned expansive new responsibilities to both Special Operations Command (SOCOM) and Strategic Command (STRATCOM).  And included in those responsibilities were the underpinnings of a whole new world of military covert action, a world that continues and grows) today.

On SOCOM, the new UCP stated:

“The Commander, US Special Operations Command, headquartered at MacDill AFB, Tampa, Florida, is the commander of a combatant command comprising all forces assigned for the accomplishment of the commander’s missions.  SOCOM has no geographic AOR for normal operations and will not exercise those functions of command associated with that responsibility.  In addition to functions specified in sections 164(c) and 167 of title 10, USSCOM’s responsibilities include:

            a. Providing combat-ready special operations forces to other combatant commands when and as directed;

            b. Training, to including joint training exercises, of assigned forces and developing appropriate recommendations to the CJCS regarding strategy, doctrine, tactics, techniques, and procedures for the joint employment of special operations forces;

            c. Exercising command of selected special operations missions if directed to do so by the President or the Secretary of Defense.”

 STRATCOM is given responsibility for:

“Integrating and coordinating DOD information operations (IO) (currently consisting of the core IO capabilities of computer network attack (CNA), computer network defense (CND), electronic warfare (EW), operations security (OPSEC), military psychological operations (PSYOP), and military deception (MILDEC)) that cross geographic areas of responsibility or across the core IO capabilities, including:

            (1) Supporting other combatant commanders for planning;

            (2) Planning and coordinating capabilities that have trans-regional effects or that directly support national objectives;

            (3) Exercising command and control of selected missions, if directed to do so by the President or Secretary of Defense;

            (4) Identifying desired characteristics and capabilities for DOD-wide CND [computer network defense], planning for DOD-wide CND, and directing DOD-wide CND;

            (5) Identifying desired characteristics and capabilities for CNA [computer network attack], conducting CNA in support of assigned missions, and integrating CNA capabilities in support of other combatant commanders, as directed;

            (6) Identifying desired characteristics and capabilities for joint electronic warfare and planning for and conducting electronic warfare in support of assigned missions;

            (7) Supporting other combatant commanders for the planning and integration of joint OPSEC and military deception.”

 Those italics are mine.  The actual UCP finds no need to highlight SOCOM’s selected special operations missions or STRATCOM’s selected missions.  Both refer to specific functions, in Special Operation’s case, the clandestine activities and indeed covert action of the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC).  That’s well known.

But In STRATCOM’s case, since computer network attack and military deception is openly mentioned in separate paragraphs – and is now the responsibility of STRATCOM’s subordinate U.S. Cyber Command — it is unclear what “selected missions” are.  Given the new candidness of the CIA on its responsibilities for covert action, shouldn’t it be.