A New US Intelligence Agency

By Mike Haran
May 26, 2012

The CIA now has a competition. The ‘National Clandestine Service’, a newly created agency is to provide intelligence directly to the military for use in its ongoing operations. This agency, unlike the CIA, is not merely a repository for intelligence, but fully involved in ongoing military operations. This signals an about face in the US strategy. Since the end of WWII the emphasis has been upon conventional warfare. In 1940 the size of the US Army was 243,095 men growing to 12,000,000 in 1945. By the end of 1967, for a single country in SE Asia: Vietnam, the figure was 385, 000 men; over 100,000 that of the 1940 army.

During the latter part of the twentieth century there have been numerous guerrilla wars, mostly power plays by those wishing to replace the colonial powers, in some instances without a single shred of legitimacy. At the end of WWII the US, unlike the Europeans, considered itself immune from attack due to the might of its military. The Europeans did however have an advantage over the US in that they were forced to develop counter insurgency warfare early; France fighting the FLN, Britain the IRA, Germany the various terror groups such as the Bader Meinhoff and the Red Brigades. With the setting up of the NCS the US now seems to have made a dramatic 180 degree turn. Fighting today’s wars is a return to fighting those outside of Europe during the nineteenth century where the enemies were tribal, given to guerilla tactics, unable to oppose conventional European armies.No doubt the NCS will be training agents to fulfill roles similar to those undertaken by nineteenth century British and Russians political officers disguised as horse traders or merchants surreptitiously contacting tribal leaders showing a willingness to work with their governments.

Modern warfare is a whole new ball game. One must know not only how to fight, but also how to intrigue with those who, while not strictly friendly, could be off to help to ones cause. Armies will be smaller, more mobile and having a highly developed reconnaissance and intelligence capability focusing on the local level of operations. Junior commanders will be have to become more aware of a multitude of factors such as: opponent spies, possible defections, friendly and unfriendly non combatants, most likely position of insurgency forces, where next attack most likely to come from etc...

That the National Clandestine Service was set up could be a reflection upon the difficult financial straits the US now finds itself in following the deployments in Afghanistan and Iraq. That the battle field has moved to the Middle East is obvious by just reading the newspapers. That there is a new face to warfare is still not quite so apparent but becoming more so every day..


About the author Mike Haran: Here is the link to my new web site devoid of any connection with the above which I use as a device to publish my war games,link.



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