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STRENGTHENING FBI INTELLIGENCE CAPABILITIES
Director Mueller Presents the Bureau's Vision for Creating an Intelligence Service within the FBI

06/04/04

Photograph of FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III.It's a vital national issue: in a post 9/11 world, what's the best way to structure our country's domestic intelligence operations to help prevent terrorist attacks on our homeland?

On June 3, in testimony before the House Appropriations Committee, Director Mueller presented the FBI's vision in concrete detail, from the broad concepts to the specific initiatives that will make them work.

The main features of the plan, which build on our transformation of our intelligence and counterterrorism capabilities over the past two and a half years:

  1. Create a new Directorate of Intelligence in the FBI with "broad and clear authority over intelligence-related functions."
  2. Streamline budget decision-making so that intelligence resources are more easily coordinated and shared across Bureau programs and more quickly adapted to fast-moving global threats.

We urge you to spend some time studying the proposal and its new initiatives, including ways to strengthen everything from information-sharing to strategic analysis ... from field operations to language translation and training.

We also call your attention to the five key principles the Director says must guide any intelligence reform, namely:

  1. Surgically removing intelligence functions from the FBI would be "counterproductive" because intelligence is ingrained in every aspect of the Bureau;
  2. Combining intelligence and law enforcement tools in one organization enables faster, more coordinated, and more multi-faceted prevention operations;
  3. Our in-depth understanding of the threats drives what intelligence we need to collect and ultimately our overall investigative mission, making it imperative to integrate analysis, collection, and related intelligence efforts;
  4. A centrally managed program is necessary to synthesize intelligence from across the Bureau's many national security and criminal responsibilities and from across the more than 500 FBI offices worldwide;
  5. Walling off information and operations into separate compartments – what's called "stove-piping" – limits collaboration both inside and outside the FBI.

The bottom line: "With these guiding principles in mind, we support the creation of a strong intelligence service within the FBI that leverages our formidable collection capabilities and fully integrates our law enforcement and Intelligence Community partners," the Director said.

Links: The full statement | FBI Intelligence Program