FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 12, 1998
SEN. SHELBY COMMENTS ON
"COLOSSAL INTELLIGENCE FAILURE OF THE DECADE"
WASHINGTON, D. C. --- U. S. Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.), chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, expressed his extreme concern about what he called "a colossal failure of our intelligence gathering---possibly the greatest failure in more than a decade." Sen. Shelby provided the following comments after hearing the news about India's testing of nuclear weapons.
Sen. Shelby said, "This is a colossal failure of our nation's intelligence gathering that could set off a nuclear arms race in Southeast Asia. It is an extremely dangerous situation, and one that I am very concerned and distressed about. Our intelligence forces were caught completely off guard. While intelligence gathering is certainly not perfect, we must do better. Our failure to detect this shows that India did a good job of concealing their intentions, while we did a dreadfully inadequate job of detecting those intentions.
Before the week is up, I will have worked with my colleague Sen. Kerrey to schedule an oversight hearing on this issue. It is imperative that we not only determine what went wrong and why, but also how we can ensure that this does not happen again. We simply cannot and must not tolerate such failure on the part of the intelligence community."