Saturday, April 21, 2007

Military Intelligence

My father has always said that 'military intelligence' is a contradiction in terms (and he should know because that was his business).

Nevertheless, I'm enjoying reading John Keegan's Intelligence in War which describes the history of how different sides have tried to learn what, when, and where the other guys are doing.

Keegan describes the 5 fundamental stages of the intelligence game
  1. Acquisition - collecting or finding it, whether from public or secret sources.
  2. Delivery - once collected, the intelligence data has to be sent to its potential user.
  3. Acceptance - intelligence has to be believed - this likely only after the bona fides of the source are verified.
  4. Interpretation - scraps of intelligence have to be pieced together into a consistent whole.
  5. Implementation - ultimately, you have to act on the data for it to prove valuable.
Two thoughts
  1. This must be easier with everybody, from grunt to general, blogging. Do a Technorati search on posts tagged with 'enemy strategy' and you're halfway home.
  2. Identity and intelligence data share a very similar lifecycle.

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