An intelligence-sharing continuum : next generation requirements for U.S. counterterrorism efforts
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The September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks were a major catalyst for intelligence reform in the United States. Since this date, most government agencies have strived to evolve and advance in this capacity. One such way has been through the development of multi-agency, multi-disciplinary intelligence centers, such as the National Counterterrorism Center, the Interagency Threat Assessment and Coordination Group, and the 72 state and major urban area fusion centers established throughout the nation. However, despite the changes that have occurred throughout the U.S. intelligence and law enforcement communities, significant issues still remain that are impeding the creation and flow of actionable intelligence to support domestic counterterrorism efforts. This has been identified from research conducted on numerous sources. Several policy, technological, cultural and political challenges exist, all contributing to the less-than-perfect nature of the United States' existing counterterrorism framework. This thesis aims to identify potential solutions that leverage existing intelligence operations to promote an intelligence-sharing continuum across all tiers of U.S. government. The author provides an analysis of specific, priority issues that require fixing within our nation's counterterrorism system, and provides evidence-based recommendations to improve the capability and value of existing intelligence support structures and further-develop the desired intelligence-sharing continuum.
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