INTELLIGENCE REFORM—CONSIDERATIONS FOR TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO
Mc Clean, Derron
Bruneau, Thomas C.
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The 1990 attempted coup in Trinidad and Tobago threatened democracy in the twin-island state. An Islamic group, the Jamaat Al Muslimeen, attacked an essential institution—the parliament—of the then 13-year republican state. While the security sector had prior indications of the group’s intent, varying levels of inaction allowed the group an opportunity to attack. This incident revealed a lack of predictive intelligence to prevent terrorism in the country. In subsequent years, gang violence and drug-related crimes exploded to unprecedented levels. More recently, the influence of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) resulted in a number of the country’s citizens going to Syria and Iraq. These events signal a requirement for intelligence reform in Trinidad and Tobago to assist the security sector in effectively dealing with threats to the state’s safety and security. In an effort to determine a template suited to the security environment of Trinidad and Tobago, this thesis evaluates the characteristics of a domestic intelligence agency. By reviewing intelligence theories and evaluating the application of the theories in consolidated and transitioning democracies, this thesis identifies the necessary elements for a transparent yet effective domestic intelligence agency. The lessons from case studies of Romania and the United Kingdom show that the process of balancing transparency with effectiveness is both complex and necessary to safeguard Trinidad and Tobago’s security.
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