Adonis Diaries

Scalpel operations: CIA heavily immersed as paramilitary agency

Posted on: September 3, 2010

The USA is multiplying “scalpel operations” in North Africa (Algeria), Pakistan, the new republics of the defunct Soviet Union and most of these operations are done by the CIA.  Scalpel operation is the alternative to hammer operation involving massive armed forces.   Twenty-two CIA agents died during operations since 2001; eight of them were hired by private security companies.  Actually, the USA is dealing with 533 more security private companies (in addition to the 1,400 companies before the 9/11 attack on the Twin Towers).  This increase represents 265,000 private contractors (out of the 8854,00 with security clearances) who are siphoning one-third of the intelligence services budget. 

Defense minister, Robert Gates, is waging a war within his department and the Pentagon in order to reducing the spiraling expenses.  The plan is to reduce 100 billion in five years in budget by sending to pasture many of the  4-star Generals crowding the upper hierarchy.  There are 40 such high level officers and admirals, or more than during the peak of the Vietnam War.  For example, 5 4-star Generals are required to handle the emergency military crisis center 24 hours, 7 days a week, and located 8 meters below the Pentagon.  The reduction plan is also targeting the civilian personnel in the military command:  More than one thousand civilians have been hired in the last decade and they cost 25%  more than Federal employees.

The military and the hundreds of Federal security agencies rely heavily on private companies specializing in Satellite imaging, geo-spatial intelligence and transmission, surveillance, recognition, integrated technologies and imageries.  Private providers link the complex computers and communication systems and the analysis of coded intelligence.  The Office of Naval Intelligence at Suitland (MD) employes 2,770 personnel at its maritime (war and merchant ships) operational center.  It is the contribution of 70 private specialized enterprises that allow this institution to function:  They intercept, classify, and analyse communication (public and secret) sent and received by US navy and merchant marine around the oceans and seas.

The Pentagon and the secret intelligence agencies, flushed with money, tend to purchase the latest and most sophisticated equipments without the proper trained manpower to mining their potentials.  In a sense, the construct the railway and then sit tight for the trains to arrive along with the customers.About 110 private companies (out of the 1,931) provide 90% of the work sub-contracted by the State. General Dynamic (GD) is one of these giants under whose shadow 1,814 smaller enterprises sub-contract security clearance required work.  General Dynamic generated 32 billion dollars in 2009, compared to 10 billion is 2000; its task force jumped from 43,000 to 92,000 within less than a decade.General Dynamic was into fabrication nuclear submarines in 2000 but changed strategy to follow the money sources; which means in security and intelligence services.

Another example is SGIS, founded by Hany Girgis in San Diego in 2002.  It was purchased this year by Salient Federal Solutions as it generated 100 million and expanded to hiring 675 employees scattered in 14 strategically located offices (around military and security agencies).  The problem is:  Suppose the employees of SGIS had clearance then, what about the long-range goals of the new owners?  Would they decide to market sensitive intelligence to the highest bidders?  For example, in General Dynamic offices in Herndon employees could monitor a truck in Afghanistan filmed by a camera attached to a drone.  Thus, it is like not only private employees  have clearances bu the company is given clearance and it can obtain pieces of intelligence directly in the same time as the security agencies.  CIA director Leon Panetta and Robert Gates expressed their worries of companies meddling in the general intelligence system (read: problems have already been witnessed.)

A high authority in the Senate overlooking military services declared:  “We have created a machine that escapes any control.  It is a living and breathing organism that has degenerated into a system for creating jobs.”

2 Responses to "Scalpel operations: CIA heavily immersed as paramilitary agency"

[…] Scalpel operations: CIA heavily immersed as paramilitary agency […]

[…] Scalpel operations: CIA heavily immersed as paramilitary agency Tags: Burning The Book, Posted this week (September 11) […]

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September 2010

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