Senate Bill Would Enable GAO to Aid Intelligence Oversight
A bill introduced by Congressional Democrats would empower the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to perform financial audits and other oversight of U.S. intelligence agencies, a function that those agencies have long resisted.
“Since 9/11, effective [intelligence] oversight is needed now more than ever,” said Sen. Daniel Akaka (D-HI) in a September 28 floor statement.
“However, now the Congress cannot do its job properly, in part, because its key investigative arm, the Government Accountability Office, is not given adequate access to the intelligence community.”
“Unfortunately, the intelligence community stonewalls the GAO when committees of jurisdiction request that GAO investigate problems,” Sen. Akaka said.
“If the GAO had been able to conduct basic auditing functions of the CIA, perhaps some of the problems that were so clearly exposed following the terrorist attacks in September 2001 would have been resolved. And yet, it is extraordinary that five years after 9-11 the same problems persist,” he said.
He introduced two related Congressional Research Service memoranda into the Congressional Record: one on “Congressional Oversight of Intelligence” and another on “Overview of ‘Classified’ and ‘Sensitive But Unclassified’ Information.”
See Sen. Akaka’s full September 28 statement on “The Intelligence Community Audit Act of 2006.”
If nothing else, the Akaka bill may provide a clue as to the direction of intelligence oversight in the future, if Democrats take control of Congress.
Under current leadership, intelligence oversight has fractured and decayed. For the second year in a row, Congress failed to pass an intelligence authorization bill this year.
The FAS Nuclear Notebook is one of the most widely sourced reference materials worldwide for reliable information about the status of nuclear weapons, and has been published in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists since 1987.. The Nuclear Notebook is researched and written by the staff of the Federation of American Scientists’ Nuclear Information Project: Director Hans […]
On 14 April 2023, the Belarusian Ministry of Defence released a short video of a Su-25 pilot explaining his new role in delivering “special [nuclear] munitions” following his training in Russia. The features seen in the video, as well as several other open-source clues, suggest that Lida Air Base––located only 40 kilometers from the Lithuanian border and the […]
A photo in a Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) student briefing from 2022 shows four people inspecting what appears to be a damaged B61 nuclear bomb.
In early-February 2023, the Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. Strategic Command (STRATCOM) had informed Congress that China now has more launchers for Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs) than the United States. The report is the latest in a serious of revelations over the past four years about China’s growing nuclear weapons arsenal and the deepening […]