Army Memo on Oversight of Sensitive Activities

06.12.06 | 1 min read | Text by Steven Aftergood

Some agencies treat oversight of their programs as a burden or a threat to be avoided or evaded. But that is a shortsighted view.

The paradox of oversight is that when properly performed it actually serves the interests of the overseen program by building confidence in its legitimacy and integrity.

Perhaps with that in mind, U.S. Army Secretary Francis J. Harvey recently issued a memo (pdf) to senior Army leaders stressing the importance of effective oversight, especially when it comes to classified “sensitive” activities.

“I expect my oversight team to have an informed understanding of the Army’s conduct of, or support to, sensitive activities,” Secretary Harvey wrote.

“Sensitive activities may include intelligence activities and military operations, organizational relationships or processes, and technological capabilities or vulnerabilities.”

See “Oversight of Sensitive Activities,” May 18, 2006.