the 2019 Nat’l Intelligence Strategy Report
Consider this a PSA; although it’s not a sexy subject, it does give insight (if macabre) into the US hegemonic desire for Full Spectrum Dominance and ostensible fears (seeking moar Warbucks?).
Martin Berger has the most fun with it in his ‘Is the US Really Going to Make It in This World?’, feb 4, journal-neo.org
“A couple of days ago, a 36-page long document titled the 2019 National Intelligence Strategy first appeared on the Office of the director of national intelligence (ODNI) website.”
“This paper explores the threats that the US is alleged to face over the course of the next four years. Additionally, the paper outlines the tasks and duties of various security and civil bodies that are bound to adjust accordingly to prepare for the incoming threats. ODNI states that the main threat America is going to face in the foreseeable future is Western isolationism that is said to be exacerbated by the “weakening” of the post-WWII “rule-based” order and the nations that have embraced the rapidly evolving modern geopolitical landscape.
No similar strategy had been released since 2014, he writes, and notes that one change is that China has emerged as a global economic and military power, and that both Russia and China are continuing to develop anti-satellite weapons to weaken the US military and security, but: no rationale is given for why they’d even bother to create them.”
Similar reports are generated every four or five years by a ‘whopping’ 17 intelligence agencies, and reader can imagine Berger chuckling as he types, including that the 17 actually believe that the reports will aid policy makers in making informed decisions about the global chessboard.
“Upon revealing the strategy to the general public, the sitting director of National intelligence, Dan Coats announced that a number of states may pose a direct threat to the US, including China, Iran, North Korea and Russia. Additionally, he described a number of non-state actors as potential troublemakers, including various radical militant groups, organized crime groups and so on. Dan Coats stated that Washington is particularly concerned with the prospects of some of those forces merging together.
It’s curious that intelligence officials predict that Russia will attempt to increase its influence and authorities, which “may conflict with US goals and priorities in multiple regions.” It’s been added that over the course of the next four years Russia will make an attempt to modernize anti-air and electronic warfare capabilities, which is curious as it doesn’t look that it was lagging behind in any of those areas anyway. It’s also been added that the rapid development of China’s military capability along with its determination to pursue its own interests in the Asia-Pacific region is going to be a tough ball for the US to dodge.”
Berger further reminds readers that when the recent Pentagon Report on China Military Power kinda makes this report redundant, as it shows Washington couldn’t be any more worried about Chinese missile systems, hypersonic weapons, and that China’s technology may be the best in the world: rapid advances in air, sea, and space tech, plus cybersecurity and cyberspace.
And of course the Biggest Worry is due to the fact that Moscow and Beijing have been prone to working together in the past in various fields.
“It’s been noted that China and Russia are more aligned than at any point since the mid-1950s, and the relationship is likely to strengthen in the coming years as some of their interests and threat perceptions converge, especially in the light of Washington’s persistent unilateralism and interventionism.”
Apparently at a recent Senate Intelligence Committee’s world-wide threats hearing, it was made clear that the President and the heads of the Intel agencies seem to be living on different planets, providing a link to: nbcnews.com’s ‘Trump and his intel chiefs are worlds apart on ISIS, Russia, border; Analysis: Senate testimony reveals deep divide between U.S. intelligence agencies and President Trump’ (North Korea, Iran and the nuclear deal, ISIS, and a third video labeled “Intel chief warns of foreign interference in 2020 elections”.
All of which leads one to wonder if the Intel agencies will be the ones to ‘interfere in the 2020 elections, as the WikiLeaks publication the CIA Vaults 7 and 8 demonstrated how easy it was to create foreign bot look-alikes. Whaddya say, Dan? Wanna Dump Trump?
Berger concludes with these great observations and a magnificent question:
“As the most informed people in the US seem to agree that things are not looking good, it seems that Washington has a troubled path ahead of it. It remains unexplained how Donald Trump and his administration are going to preserve the so-called sole hegemone in its current shape and form in a world where the number of dissent voices is growing by the day. But is it really the fault of the rest of the world that Washington is convinced that the only way for it to exist and operate is to dictate its will to the rest of the world on the premise that might makes right? It’s clear that the US is depriving itself of a lot of viable steps on the geopolitical chessboard by pretending that it can still pick up a fight with any number of contenders and still come out on top.”
But moving on to those who believe The Report is #EstimablyImportant™:
From longwarjournal.org ‘ODNI releases annual overview of Islamic State and al Qaeda networks’
(click for larger)
“The ODNI warns that both the Islamic State and al Qaeda maintain global networks that are far from defeated. The Islamic State still has “thousands” of fighters in Iraq and Syria alone, contradicting claims by President Trump and other administration officials that the so-called caliphate has been defeated.
The map above is the ODNI’s assessment of the areas where the Islamic State, al Qaeda and affiliated groups operate. The Islamic State and al Qaeda remain bitter rivals, often clashing in some of the areas shown. However, both have a significant global footprint.”
Oddly, the Map leaves out the ‘Violent Extremists’ in most of the resource-rich nations of sub-Saharan Africa, from which CIA astro-turfed terr’ist sprees provide the organization ‘the duty’ to swoop in and stabilize the chaos they create. Yet we know that a major portion of Africom’s mission on their ‘Operations’ tab is:
‘Along with regional partners, U.S. Africa command conducts military operations to disrupt, degrade and neutralize violent extremist organizations that present a transnational threat.
Operations set conditions for continued partnering to help African partner nations build the capacity they need to secure the region.’ Wish they had their own ISIS map…but back to long war journal:
“Al Qaeda’s senior leadership and global network
Despite years of counterterrorism pressure, al Qaeda’s senior leadership remains active and in command of a widespread network. Al Qaeda’s senior leaders (AQSL) are “strengthening the network’s global command structure and continuing to encourage attacks against the West, including the United States,” the ODNI states.” [snip]
“However, the ODNI does not explain why each of these al Qaeda affiliates is waging an insurgency. They are attempting to overthrow existing governments or power structures and replace them with Islamic emirates, or states, based on al Qaeda’s version of sharia. For al Qaeda, this is a long-term project, fraught with difficulties and setbacks, but it is the organization’s goal nonetheless.”
One might ask why those Islamist groups are actually kicking back against the Western occupations and colonialism, but moving on…
See for instance bernhard’s Feb. 4 ‘Syria Sitrep – Trump Says U.S. Will Leave But Pentagon Keeps Adding Forces; The U.S. retreat from northeast Syria is still not happening. In yesterdays interview with CBS President Trump again said the troops would leave, but the Pentagon is doing the opposite of retreating’, moonofalabama.org
Aaaaand from cnbc.com Feb. 1 comes The Panic Button: ‘China and Russia could disrupt US energy infrastructure, intelligence report warns on heels of Huawei indictments’
“China and Russia pose the biggest cyberthreat to the United States, but for very different reasons, representatives from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence say. The ODNI report also says Russia has developed the capability to shut down U.S. infrastructure, including power and energy companies, as it did in Ukraine in 2015. Threats from Iran and North Korea area also continuing to grow, including substantial attacks against the banking sector, according to the intelligence officials.” [long paranoid rant snip], but just for fun:
“FBI Director Christopher Wray said Russia is also continuing to use social media platforms to continue influence campaigns, including the 2018 midterms. “Not only did they continue to do it, they are continuing to adapt their model and other countries are taking interest [in conducting similar campaigns],” he said.
U.S. social media companies like Facebook and Twitter are increasingly — but tentatively [you betcha!]— cooperating with U.S. intelligence on monitoring for misinformation campaigns, said ODNI director Dan Coates.
“Our tech teams are working with their tech teams. I can’t say that’s worked with every social media company, but it’s significantly better because there is information we can provide them that’s in their benefit. I’m encouraged — having made some trips to several of these companies — with the openness and willingness to see what we can do,” said Coates.”
(cross-posted from Café Babylon)