Woodrow Wilson School Policy Conference 401A Intelligence Reform in the Post-Cold War Era
Conference Director Diane C. Snyder
January 6, 1996
I pledge that the following paper represents my ideas in accordance with the university Honor Code.
Global Organized Crime in the Post-Cold War Era
Since the end of the Cold War and the subsequent refocusing of Intelligence away from the Soviet Union, Global Organized Crime has been recognized as a priority threat to national security. Global Organized Crime has been defined by FBI Director Louis J. Freeh as "a continuing criminal conspiracy having a firm organizational structure, a conspiracy fed by fear and corruption." The international crimes that extend over foreign borders and into the United States include drug trafficking, extortion, money laundering, arms smuggling, bribery, and fraud schemes. In recent years these criminal groups have dramatically increased the scope of their activities by taking advantage of many Post-Cold War opportunities such as the lowering of economic and political barriers; the end of communist regimes and the founding of fragile new democracies; the increase in legitimate international trade; and the advances in technology that facilitate global communication and transport.
The Administration, Intelligence and Law Enforcement have reacted to the new organized crime groups, emerging on a global scale after the Cold War, by creating a strong national response. The current system is not "broken." However, the threat itself is growing in terms of its scale and complexity at a such a fast rate that it is important to look at possible ways in which the national response to Global Organized Crime can be improved. In order to understand the significance of improving current policy and national efforts against Global Organized Crime, the changing nature and seriousness of the threat must first be understood.
The Changing Threats
Emerging threats vs. Familiar problems
Global Organized Crime in the Post-Cold War Era pose some familiar national security threats and some threats that United States did not previously have to address. The security concerns that existed during the Cold War include: political instability of foreign governments, international drug trafficking and arms transfers to hostile parties. Global criminal leaders present new puzzles within these familiar threats. Former Director of the CIA, R. James Woolsey, described the difficulties of applying traditional national security methods when addressing Global Organized Crime,
...the tools of diplomacy are ineffective and irrelevant in dealing directly with these criminal groups. Even under the most difficult, intractable period of the Cold War, if consensus was not possible, communication was, nevertheless, feasible. Not so in the world of organized crime. Although we do negotiate with our key allies and friends to better attack the problem, there is no negotiating table where we can try to work out a compromise or reach a consensus with criminals....
In addition, certain distinctions can be made between Global Organized Crime and terrorism. While many terrorist groups that engage in violent acts are motivated by specific political causes, such as Egyptian Islamic Fundamentalist terrorists who use violent means to protest their country's current government and Western influences, most organized crime groups are only interested in political power for the security it would provide their organization and are primary motived by money.
The international economic threat, posed by Global Organized Crime, in an increasingly global economy is among the major "new" threats to national security. The major economic powers and the less developed nations did not previously share a collective problem of this nature. Global Organized Crime does not just affect a select group of financial institutions or regional areas, it affects international financial networks and economies at a national level. These threats present new conflicts that will require innovative strategies in the future. Global Cooperation among Organized Crime Groups
Cooperation among Global Organized Crime groups has increased as restrictions have lessened between international borders. These foreign havens for criminals and their assets have made it increasingly difficult for Law Enforcement to trace illegal profits; gather evidence on the criminal leaders; and identify and contain criminal groups. When Law Enforcement activities in Florida reduced the amount of Colombian cocaine being smuggled into the U.S. through the Carribean islands, the Colombian drug cartel leaders simply began working with their Mexican counterparts instead of their Carribean partners. Another example of an international partnership is Columbian drug lords selling methamphetamine to American dealers in the U.S., the ingredients for which were produced through Colombian connections to organized crime in Europe, Asia and the Far East. These global networks allow organized crime groups to greatly increase the profits of their operations and their methods of evading local governments as they share information, skills, costs, market access and relative strengths.
Threat to Global Economy
Transnational organized crime groups pose more of a threat to international financial markets as the world economy becomes increasingly interdependent. Laundering billions of dollars in organized crime money worsens national debt problems because the large sums of money are then lost as tax revenue to that country's government. Russian organized crime groups are actively involved in banking, according to FBI official James Moody, because public financial institutions are "the most vulnerable and lucrative target." The Russian Interior Ministry has estimated that organized crime "controls" most of Russia's 200 banks and half of its financial capital ("control" ranges from ownership and operation to influence over bank decisions through threats of violence). U.S. and Western businesses in Russia, in particular, are frequent targets of extortion, robberies, threats and murder. Security costs for these businesses (especially physical protection, extra protection of cargo, and forced payments to gangsters for "protection,") often consume more than 30% of profits. The fear generated combined with organized crime monopolies in certain industries, such as the agriculture and construction markets in Columbia and Venezuela, damages the overall economy because it discourages legitimate, innovative businesses and entrepreneurs (foreign and domestic) from entering the market.
Global Organized Crime can have a damaging effect on political structures, especially the fragile new systems of government found in the former communist or totalitarian regimes. South American drug cartels have a destabilizing effect on governments through their financial support of local guerilla rebels, such as the Sendero Luminoso in Peru and the Revolutionary Armed Forces in Columbia, who share their animosity toward the government and who exchange protection for money and arms supplies. The Sicilian Mafia have used their economic power over local businesses and banks and their supplies of cash to corrupt politicians, judges and Law Enforcement, assassinating many of those public figures who will not cooperate. Media polls indicate that the many Russians believe the "mafiya" is more powerful than the government. As people feel that the government is powerless to stop organized crime, they turn to crime leaders for protection and political institutions begin to deteriorate. Fear of organized crime undermines the credibility of political reform and may encourage support for anti-democratic, hardline politicians such as Russia's Vladimir Zhirinovsky who promised during the 1993 campaign to end organized crime in 3 months through mass arrest and execution. The Potential for a Major Nuclear/Arms Theat
The global networks of criminals, terrorists and corrupt government officials and their complex methods of smuggling goods could easily be transferred to the smuggling of nuclear materials on a massive scale. While Global Organized Crime has become increasingly more involved in the transfer of arms, encouraged in part by conflicts in the Balkans and former Soviet Union which proved to be profitable for the Russian and Italian mafia, the smuggling of nuclear materials seems to be currently isolated to select incidents and mostly to amateurs. Russia no longer has the nuclear materials protection that it had during the Cold War when materials were controlled by a tight, centralized system under a politically powerful government. In the past year, the FBI has seized major shipments of nuclear materials in Eastern Europe, including large seizures of cesium in Lithuania and uranium in the Czech Republic. As Global Organized Crime groups become more powerful and as nuclear materials become more vulnerable (through poor management, underpaid desperate workers in the nuclear facilities, and government corruption) the threat becomes more serious. Damage to Society caused by International Drug Trafficking
International drug trafficking poses a threat to the social fabric of all countries. The increase in the scale of these operations has led to an increase in drug use, addiction, and general crime level. The common U.S.-Mexico border alone causes a tremendous increase in the American drug problem: 60-70% of cocaine in the U.S. enters at this border through a Mexican-Columbian organized crime partnership. Other European organized crime groups use this border to transport heroin, marijuana, and methamphetamine. It is becoming increasingly difficult to track the flow of narcotics into the United States as the drug cartel methods become more technically sophisticated: redesigning the interiors of Boeing 727s to hold maximum amounts of cocaine; transferring drug profits electronically to dozens of banks around the world in less than 24 hours; and using falsified export documents and invoices for goods in order to disguise drug trafficking transactions.
President Clinton and the current administration have acknowledged the threat of Global Organized Crime by supporting new anti-crime legislation and by highlighting the issue in public forums. Reducing transnational crime, according to President Clinton, is a part of the challenge of "making sure America remains the strongest force in the world for peace and freedom, security and prosperity" as it enters the 21st century. Presidential Decision Directive-42 (PDD-42), created by President Clinton, recognizes that Global Organized Crime is a threat to national security. The directive orders government agencies to "use creatively and aggressively all legal means to combat international organized crime,"creates the authority to deny visas to a broad range of organized criminals, and sanctions authority against governments that cooperate with or provide sanctuary to organized crime figures. While PDD- 42 brought public attention to the issue of international organized crime, it did not expand or change current policy. President Clinton merely highlighted the topic with PDD-42 and repeated older policy. In comparison, PDD-35 may prove to have a significant effect on the threat because it will affect the amount of Intelligence resources devoted to global crime. PDD- 35, which defines intelligence requirements, declares that intelligence collection and analysis of international criminal and drug activities should be a high priority. The President has also actively supported the International Crime Control Act of 1996 which addresses Global Organized Crime with measures that include expanding the definitions of money laundering, eliminating the statute of limitations for all federal criminal offenses committed outside of the United States and encourages global cooperation among governments through joint-law enforcement programs. The Act will provide U.S. Law Enforcement with a little more flexibility overseas in their investigations and arrests of international criminals.
It is possible for the President to lead a government-wide initiative against a new security threat. In the late 1940's, the U.S. developed a strategy for containing Soviet sponsored communism. This unified plan of action included the Marshall Plan, military build-up, development of long-standing alliances (especially NATO), public diplomacy efforts to rebuild foreign democracies and the focusing of the Intelligence Community on the problem. The Post-Cold War Era has a different world context, but the successful strategy can still serve as a model for intergovernmental cooperation.
Law Enforcement and Intelligence
Different Perspectives on Global Organized Crime
Containing organized crime traditionally has been the domain of law enforcement agencies while addressing national security concerns has been primarily the field of the Intelligence Community. Transnational crime blurs the line between "domestic" and "foreign" affairs because the criminals have a global impact: they are based in foreign countries, but have international ties, including many in the United States. The Law Enforcement perspective on Global Organized Crime is that it is a major cause in the increasing domestic and international crime levels. Law Enforcement seeks to reduce global crime through arrests and successful prosecutions of the international organized crime leaders. The Intelligence perspective examines global crime in terms of its political and economic impact overseas and as a threat to national security. Intelligence agencies pursue information on Global Organized Crime that will assist Law Enforcement in their investigations but are primarily concerned with providing policy-makers with global crime intelligence.
The differing perspectives on Global Organized Crime reveals larger differences between Law Enforcement and Intelligence. Since the Law Enforcement mission is to enforce the law and provide information to court trials that will establish proof beyond a reasonable doubt, they are acutely sensitive to evidentiary requirements when collecting information. Intelligence agencies, because of their mission to provide policy-makers with relevant national security intelligence, collect information for their own analysis and are more concerned with preserving their sources than placing them under the public scrutiny of trials. Generations of Law Enforcement and Intelligence officials working for different missions have resulted in a mutual distrust of working together; while Intelligence worries about protecting its sources and methods when assisting a criminal investigation, Law Enforcement is concerned about protecting their evidence.
The Law Enforcement Approach
The Department of Justice seeks to reduce Global Organized Crime by presenting a strong Law Enforcement presence overseas. In recent years, FBI Legal Attache offices alone have grown to 70 Senior Agents in 23 countries. The Legal Attache program works closely with foreign police on specific cases and acts as a "distant early warning system" to alert the FBI of emerging crime threats. Director Freeh has focused on "building cop-to-cop bridges between American law enforcement and our overseas counterparts" and views this as being the most effective means of fighting international crime. The FBI programs in the U.S. and overseas that train foreign law enforcement officers are a central element of this partnership. The model for global cooperation through training is the recent creation of the International Law Enforcement Academy in Budapest.
Although the FBI has been successful in building an increasingly extensive network of police force partnerships, the Law Enforcement approach to Global Organized Crime does have its limitations. Director Freeh has suggested that "such international law enforcement problems are not solved by merely an intelligence community response. It is not a matter of spy- counterspy. Instead, it requires a law enforcement response..." Despite Director Freeh's persuasive arguments, there are certain obstacles for a law enforcement response. Collecting evidence beyond a reasonable doubt in Global Organized Crime cases is more difficult because the international networks allow criminals to hide their tracks in different bank accounts, partners, and storage areas around the world. The overall effectiveness of prosecuting these criminals is also questionable in cases when a crime leader is brought to trial, and his organization simply promotes a different criminal to that position in order to continue with its operations.
The Intelligence Approach
As part of its new role addressing non-traditional threats of the Post-Cold War Era, Intelligence makes contributions of Global Organized Crime information to Law Enforcement and policy-makers. Former DCI John Deutch redirected the Intelligence Community's resources and activities toward assisting Law Enforcement to "identify, target and apprehend" criminals engaged in illegal trafficking and smuggling. The CIA has reorganized the Director of Central Intelligence's Counter-Narcotics Center into the DCI Crime and Narcotics Center. The new center has tried to provide greater opportunities for law enforcement agencies to gain "actionable intelligence" on specific global crime groups. According to David Carey, Director of the DCI Crime and Narcotics Center, intelligence collection has been primarily directed at the structure of international crime networks and the political and economic impact of the threat.
HUMINT (Human-Source Intelligence) has proven to be the most effective Intelligence discipline in collecting information on global crime. In SIRs prepared at the request of the DCI and under the auspices of the National Intelligence Council, HUMINT was graded as being critically more important for narcotics intelligence than all other intelligence disciplines put together. The global networks of organized crime groups interacting with other criminal groups, terrorists and corrupt officials, are not easily observed using the technical methods that were successfully employed for national security concerns during the Cold War. They can, however, be penetrated by human sources. Human agents, through their internal access to the criminal groups, provide information on future dangers and weaknesses of the criminal networks, and without the use of covert action, disrupt and isolate international criminal groups by allowing Intelligence to place them under intense scrutiny.
Although the National Security Act of 1947 prohibits the CIA from having domestic Law Enforcement powers, the CIA continues to be involved in Global Organized Crime cases that have domestic elements. Many transnational criminals have connections to American citizens and operate parts of their organization in the United States. For example, over 200 of Russia's estimated 6000 organized crime groups operate with American counterparts in 17 U.S. cities spread out across 14 states. Reagan's Executive Order 12333 clarifies CIA statutory authority in this area by authorizing the CIA to "participate in law enforcement activities to investigate or prevent clandestine intelligence activities by foreign powers or international terrorist or narcotics activity." Cooperation with Law Enforcement allows the CIA to remain active in cases with domestic elements. The CIA, under E.O. 12333, participates in the international aspects of the global crime case and Law Enforcement then handles the domestic aspects that involve U.S. citizens or other areas of domestic involvement. Cooperation Between Intelligence and Law Enforcement
Problems in coordinating overseas activities between Intelligence and Law Enforcement have resulted from the greatly increasing number of overseas Justice Department agents (especially FBI), overlapping responsibilities, lack of a clear hierarchy for coordination, different missions and concerns over the risks involved in cases. Law Enforcement agencies alone have problems with inefficient overlap and interference of cases. In April 1992, five Law Enforcement agencies had duplicating analysis of drug smuggling movement by air into Mexico. There is controversy over Law Enforcement coordinating activities with the Ambassador although it is required by law to do so (22 U.S. C. 3927). Law Enforcement expresses interest in keeping the Ambassador informed of its activities but is reluctant to involve him in prosecutorial decisions. On an inconsistent basis, Law Enforcement coordinates the recruitment of confidential informants overseas with the Chief of Station. Although the Chief of Station and Law Enforcement representative are under the authority of the Embassy, there is not a clear hierarchy or set of guide-lines for coordinating activities. Since there is not a single individual or group to organize individual activities, the FBI often acts independently of Intelligence and vice versa.
Intelligence and Law Enforcement, from worker to director levels of authority, have created projects to improve coordination between the communities. A special task force is trying to clarify guidelines for cooperation between Intelligence and Law Enforcement overseas. A Joint Intelligence Community-Law Enforcement (JICLE) working group (comprised of lawyers and officials from both sides) was created in 1995 and meets on a weekly basis to help devise solutions to common problems. The recommendations of the JICLE have included Intelligence- Law Enforcement training programs that overcome mission and community culture barriers through education on the laws, regulations, and procedures that facilitate coordination. The new Transnational Threats Committee of the NSC, which includes the DCI and the Attorney General, provides the first formal opportunity for overseas coordination problems to be solved at the highest levels of authority.
Law Enforcement and Intelligence have found that international cooperation is one of the most effective solutions to transnational problems. The Law Enforcement Community has made significant advances in global cooperation through delegations of American law enforcement leaders visiting foreign counterparts, cooperative criminal investigations, and training programs for foreign Law Enforcement. The Aspin-Brown Commission found that Intelligence derived great benefit from such cooperative arrangements as: exchanging requests for collection; exchanging analysts and technicians; and assisting foreign countries to acquire collection capabilities in order to share the results of future collections. While U.S. Intelligence Community might not want to pursue a thorough "spy-to-spy" method analogous to FBI Director Freeh's "cop-to-cop" approach (due to the inherent risks to sources and methods), the IC still needs to continue global cooperation efforts. In many cases, global cooperation is worth the risk because it provides access to geography, skills, contacts and information that would be otherwise unavailable.
Direction from the Administration
The Aspin-Brown Commission's Preparing for the 21st Century: An Appraisal of U.S. Intelligence recommends that the President by Executive Order reaffirm that global criminal activities are national security matters and require a multi-agency response. The recommendation further suggests that "a law enforcement approach is inadequate." If implemented, this recommendation would have almost zero costs and obstacles but would create little improvement on the present situation by providing no additional funds, manpower or plans for action. The President has already recognized these issues in PDD-35, PDD-42 and through his support for the International Crime Control Act of 1996. The additional Executive Order would not contribute significantly to the reform effort.
The Aspin-Brown Commission recommends an E.O. that would clarify that intelligence agencies with collection capabilities may collect information about non-U.S. persons outside the United States at the request of Law Enforcement. The Commission does not specify if Intelligence would participate based on its own volition and if Law Enforcement could actually task Intelligence. "Tasking," as opposed to "requesting information," would imply a certain amount of Law Enforcement control over Intelligence during the case. The recommendation would basically leave the situation as it is currently but would officially recognize the legality of Intelligence agencies collecting for Law Enforcement. There is a reluctance on the part of the Intelligence Community to accept direct collection requests from law enforcement agencies. NSA and CIA refuse to be directly tasked by Law Enforcement and will only proceed with a collection request on a specific target if they first determine that there is a "foreign intelligence" purpose. This formal requirement is often a mere procedural formality because most requests are determined to be relevant to foreign intelligence. Unfortunately, the requirement can also create tension between the two communities by fostering the perception that Intelligence is unwilling to assist Law Enforcement.
Instead of the President creating an E.O., the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal year 1997( IAA97) responded to the Aspin-Brown recommendation with an amendment to the National Security Act of 1947 that clarifies Intelligence assistance to Law Enforcement. Section 105A states "elements of the intelligence community may, upon the request of a United States law enforcement agency, collect information outside the United States about individuals who are not United States persons." The careful wording still implies that Intelligence will participate based on its own volition. If it had been phrased as "Law Enforcement may request that...", it would have had slightly different connotations. As it is currently written, it follows the Aspin-Brown model, and officially authorizes the current Intelligence-Law Enforcement collection procedures without trying to significantly improve them.
The amendment, as it was recommended by the Commission, will provide some benefits to Law Enforcement and Intelligence cooperation and will have little costs. The CIA and NSA will benefit by collecting for Law Enforcement with less concern about their legal authorities being questioned. Law Enforcement will benefit from a probable increase in collection requests that are answered. In evading the more controversial question of collection responsibilities and overseas tasking, the Aspin-Brown recommendation and IAA97 also had fewer implementation obstacles.
The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence's IC21: Intelligence Community in the 21st Century recommend that no additional clarifications of the law be made in terms of coordination and cooperation between Law Enforcement and Intelligence. They suggested that there is already enough flexibility and a workable set of legal boundaries in the current laws and standing Executive Orders. E.O. 12333 provides reasonably flexible boundaries for Intelligence assisting Law Enforcement in international criminal cases. Despite these arguments a clarification of the law, as the Aspin-Brown Commission recommended and IAA97 created, still provided some benefits. Lack of precise legal authorities can hamper, delay or side-track cooperation and communication efforts between the two communities.
Coordination between Law Enforcement and Intelligence
Global Crime Committee
The Aspin-Brown Commission, HPSCI and the Council on Foreign Relations reports agree that the Intelligence and the Law Enforcement Communities need a better mechanism for finding solutions to disagreements and for forming cohesive strategies. The Aspin-Brown Commission recommends that the President create by Executive Order a Global Crime Committee of the National Security Council to direct the U.S. actions against transnational security threats. The committee would be chaired by the National Security Advisor and the core members would include the Director of Central Intelligence, the Attorney General, and the Secretaries of State and Defense. Unfortunately, the Secretary of Treasury is not included among the core members even though his input would be important when the Committee discussed such transnational threats as financial crimes and illegal smuggling. The new committee would identify specific transnational groups that require a coordinated response; establish an overall strategy and monitor its implementation; develop improved procedures for sharing relevant information between the two communities; and develop guidelines to govern the coordination of law enforcement overseas. The recommendation for the creation of this committee is the one of the most significant efforts by the intelligence reform reports to improve the national strategy toward Global Organized Crime.
Instead of the President using an Executive Order, Congress responded to the Aspin- Brown Commission's recommendation by creating the Committee on Transnational Threats, under section 804 of the Intelligence Authorization Act of FY 1997. With the exception of the committee's name and a few minor differences, the new Committee follows the model created by the Commission in their recommendation. Unlike the Transnational Threats Committee, previous Intelligence and Law Enforcement working groups, task forces and meetings were not held at a director level, and were not focused on forming a national strategy but rather on resolving individual conflicts between the communities. The Aspin-Brown recommendation succeeded in convincing the Congressional committees to create the Transnational Threat Committee but the real obstacle remains insuring that the directors actually use this opportunity to forge better cooperation instead of a superficial collaboration. The major cost of the committee is pulling already busy leaders away from other activities. The potential benefits of improving the national approach toward global crime will outweigh the costs.
The Committee, as it was modeled after the Commission's recommendation, blends all international criminal threats into one label of "global crime" or "transnational threats." While some of the security and diplomacy issues are similar, Global Organized Crime and terrorist groups have different organizational networks, agendas, and weaknesses. They also pose different economic and political threats. While the Transnational Threats Committee will address both of these issues, it should be aware that strategies that are responsive to the differences in Global Organized Crime and terrorism will be more effective in reducing each threat. Single Law Enforcement Representative
The Aspin-Brown Commission recommends that the President designate the Attorney General as the focal point and spokesperson for formulating the Law Enforcement strategy for global crime, facilitating cooperation with Intelligence and coordinating overseas Law Enforcement activities. Currently, Law Enforcement responsibility is split between the Attorney General (whose department includes FBI, DEA and INS) and the Secretary of Treasury (whose department includes Secret Service, Customs Service, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms). The majority of Global Organized Crime issues fall under the Attorney General's responsibilities but Global Organized Crime cases that involve smuggling goods into the U.S., money laundering and other financial crimes, fall under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of Treasury. They should both be included in forming national strategies and in representing Law Enforcement as they direct departments with different responsibilities and resources. The additional Treasury perspective provides more significant benefits than the gain in efficiency that a single representative would provide.
The HPSCI report similarly opposes the Attorney General acting as the single representative or the FBI acting as the lead agency of Law Enforcement. HPSCI argues that it would be a mistake to ignore overseas law enforcement agencies outside of the Justice Department. This is an important recommendation because while the FBI has provided innovative solutions to global crime and should continue to be active in influencing the improvement of the overall law enforcement strategy, it is not the only agency involved in overseas activities.
Priority in the National Strategy and Coordination
Since effective coordination requires strong leadership, the Aspin-Brown Commission and the Council on Foreign Relations Report suggest that a coordinated national effort against global crime would benefit from Intelligence taking priority over Law Enforcement. According to the Aspin-Brown Commission, in order to coordinate daily activities overseas, Law Enforcement should play a subordinate role under the Ambassador and the Chief of Station. However, HPSCI argues against Intelligence taking immediate priority over Law Enforcement and only recommends that the Chief of Station and the Ambassador be "kept reasonably informed of law enforcement objectives and plans." While Intelligence agencies can make a significant contribution to policy-makers forming decisions on Global Organized Crime, they should not necessarily be given priority over Law Enforcement. The CFR's suggestion that Intelligence be given priority "lest pursuit of evidence or individuals for prosecution cause major foreign policy problems or complicate ongoing Intelligence and diplomatic activities" does not justify subordinating Law Enforcement. In many foreign countries, American Law Enforcement agents and their local activities are eagerly welcomed by the foreign governments who are concerned with stopping their national crime problems. There may be more distrust of American Intelligence. Since the majority of Law Enforcement cases are overt and carried out with the coordination of foreign police, there is little danger of Law Enforcement causing a "major foreign policy problem."
Recommendations for the new Transnational Threats Committee:
1.This study recommends that the Committee include the Secretary of Treasury when addressing such issues as illegal smuggling and financial crimes. The agencies under the Department of Treasury, in addition to those under the Department of Justice, are actively involved in the national effort against transnational crime. Global crimes that fall under the Treasury jurisdiction include: narcotics and other contraband smuggling (U.S. Customs Service); counterfeiting American money (U.S. Secret Service); money laundering and financial crimes (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network). One obstacle to implementing this recommendation is the argument that inviting the Secretary of Treasury would be unnecessary because the Attorney General is already representing Law Enforcement in the Committee. While the departments under the Attorney General are also involved in these areas, there are some situations where Department of Treasury would be more affected and more importantly, the Committee and its national strategy would benefit from the Treasury perspective.
2.The Committee should set up a practical, working hierarchy overseas to conduct Intelligence and Law Enforcement activities under a coordinated policy. One of the stated functions of the Committee is to "develop guidelines" for coordination overseas but it is necessary to specify that the Committee needs to set up guidelines for a specific hierarchy, if coordination reforms are to be effective. There is already interest in both communities in improving coordination of activities overseas. But in actual practice, Law Enforcement often acts independently of Intelligence and vice versa because lines of authority overseas can become blurred. Problems with communication are due there not being a single person or group to lead and organize the individual activities. It is further recommended that the Chief of Station (COS) be in charge of the actual coordination of these activities. As the head of the Embassy, the Ambassador should be kept informed of both Intelligence and Law Enforcement activities but his personal involvement in the details of coordination should continue to depend on the individual Ambassador. The Committee should give the Chief of Station clear guidelines for organizing activities and the authority necessary to accomplish efficient coordination of resources. They should clearly define the COS and the Law Enforcement responsibilities to each other as well as to the Ambassador. The major obstacle could be opposition from the Attorney General and Law Enforcement officials (especially FBI) who are supportive of greater cooperation but who are rapidly increasing their activities overseas and do not want to see their freedom limited by the Chief of Station. Another concern is that unless the Committee sets up clear lines of authority, it may be difficult for the Chief of Station to coordinate activities and ensure that Law Enforcement adheres to the guidelines.
3.The Committee should form a separate proactive strategy for Global Organized Crime and Drug Trafficking Networks. The IC, in order to avoid wasting resources through duplication, must recognize the similarities between Global Organized Crime and other transnational threats. However, the different activities and potential vulnerabilities of Global Organized Crime must also be acknowledged by the Committee if it is to form an effective strategy against the threat. For example, an intelligence strategy for Global Organized Crime might focus on gathering information on the international money laundering networks. Since laundered money is necessary to continue the daily operations of these criminal networks, a concentrated multi- agency attack on the money laundering channels could be debilitating to Global Organized Crime groups and Drug Traffickers. While terrorist groups can also be involved in money laundering, this strategy may not be as successful in preventing terrorist attacks. From the other perspective, strategies used against terrorism may not prove to be as effective against organized crime. Implementing this recommendation would strengthen the national effort against Global Organized Crime by producing a coordinated strategy specific to its own concerns. The costs would be low because it would not necessarily entail devoting more resources to addressing the threat but rather using the existing resources more effectively. Certain Committee members may oppose the recommendation on the belief that it would be a waste of resources to devote the Committee and the agencies they represent to one transnational threat when they could take advantage of the similarities of the threats. However, the importance of having a "Transnational Threat" committee instead of having a "Global Organized Crime" committee already takes advantage of these similarities by pooling the leaders and resources involved in all of these threats. Within the Committee, the differences should also be recognized.
4.The Committee should create more liaison programs between Intelligence and Law Enforcement dealing with Global Organized Crime. The two communities are already participating in programs like this, but since the benefits are significant, the Committee should encourage cooperation and integration on a working level through more programs. On a case by case level, they would benefit from the different perspectives and on a higher level of authority, they would benefit from the joint programs because it would help to facilitate future cooperation. The cost of adding more joint projects is relatively small when compared with the benefits of cases that result in greater intelligence gathering/prosecutions and in less resources being used overall because manpower and technology have been shared between the communities.
5.This study recommends that the Committee make efforts to improve coordination with foreign governments. Global cooperation is necessary to fight criminal groups with increasingly interconnected networks around the world. FBI Director Freeh has been very successful in establishing working partnerships with foreign Law Enforcement and governments. He sees building "cop-to-cop" connections as the key to fighting global crime. Just as strengthening the coordination between domestic agencies is a necessary step toward a more effective national strategy, improving coordination between American and foreign agencies is also an important part of reducing Global Organized Crime One obstacle would be the reluctance of Intelligence to work even closer with foreign governments, their intelligence agencies and their Law Enforcement. In the case of Russia, many law enforcement officials accept bribes from organized crime and detectives are sometimes forced to not report to their superiors for fear that the suspects will be warned of raids and arrests. Intelligence may not want to work too closely with foreign intelligence agencies in order to protect their sources and methods. However, there is always an intelligence problem of trust when dealing with human sources but the successes of HUMINT demonstrate that the benefits are worth the risks.
6.This study concurs with the HUMINT and Non-proliferation conference studies' recommendation for further use of HUMINT in dealing with transnational threats. These underground networks can be penetrated by human sources. Human agents can learn the complexities and vulnerabilities of an international network of criminal individuals and groups. The expensive satellite imagery that was helpful in collecting information on large military sites during the Cold War may not be that effective in collecting information on Global Organized Crime. There are more risks involved in trusting human sources but it is more effective in dealing with Global Organized Crime and the costs are low when compared with technical collection. Recommendations for the President:
7.This study recommends that the President confer regularly with the Transnational Threats Committee while forming his national strategy on Global Organized Crime. The new Committee offers the President an incredible opportunity to combine all of the separate abilities and interests represented by the DCI, the Attorney General, the Secretaries of State and Defense, under a unified set of anti-global crime objectives. Since IAA97 also states that the President may designate additional members, he has even more opportunities to use the Committee to respond to his needs with regard to transnational threats. The major obstacle is the President's own disapproval of the creation of the Committee. In his statement on signing the Authorization Act regarding the new Committee, he wrote, "Such efforts to dictate the President's policy process unduly intrude upon Executive prerogatives and responsibilities. I would note that under my Executive authority, I have already asked the NSC to examine these issues." The combined decisions of Intelligence and Law Enforcement leaders should provide insights into creating a coordinated policy that the NSC had previously not provided. The President frequently speaks about the importance of addressing transnational threats so he should be more interested in forming an effective solution-oriented policy against them.
8.The President should support the continuation of both the Attorney General and the Secretary of Treasury acting as representatives of Law Enforcement. The President should not select the Attorney General as the single representative for Law Enforcement. The Attorney General already acts as the Law Enforcement spokesperson in many areas dealing with Global Organized Crime. In areas that pertain more to the Treasury, such as financial crimes, the Secretary should continue to be brought in as a representative.
9.The Transnational Threats Committee should make formal annual assessments on the effects of the changes made through the reforms described above and address the weaknesses in the implementation. Reform and improvement of coordination should be a continuous process and the Committee needs to form a systematic way to continue reform of Intelligence and Law Enforcement coordination and the national response to Global Organized Crime. Possible areas for them to examine would be if there was a more cohesive national strategy; if activities overseas were actually being coordinated under the Chief of Station or if Law Enforcement officials were acting independently; and if, as a result of the reforms, there were improvements made in the Global Organized Crime assessments given to policy-makers. The President and his staff should also make a yearly assessment of the success of the Committee. He should provide feedback on how the Committee could better respond to transnational threats and provide him with information relevant to formulating a national strategy. Actual trends in Global Organized Crime and individual cases of major crime groups should be analyzed to determine if the coordinated response formulated by the Committee had an impact on the threat.
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