afternoon. It is good to be here among
colleagues and friends. I would like to
thank Harold Milstein--not only for the
invitation, but for his leadership. To
Mayor Bloomberg, Commissioner Kelly, my
former colleagues in the U.S. Attorney's
office, District Attorneys, Tom and everyone
at the Citizens Crime Commission, it is
good to see you, and I thank you for coming
With the end of the year upon us, it is
a good time to take an accounting of where
we are in our mission to protect our country
against terrorism. And, given the events
of 9/11 and the inspirational leadership
that we have all seen from New Yorkers
since that terrible day, there is no better
place for us to take stock than here in
New York City.
Someone once said that at moments of crisis,
words are hollow vessels. I felt this
again this morning flying into New York,
remembering not only 9/11, but also my
visit to Ground Zero just ten days after
the attacks. Even for a Marine who thought
he had seen it all, that day remains among
the saddest of my life. I will never forget
it. My heart and the hearts of all FBI
employees remain with the victims, the
victims' families, and the people of this
We have all been changed by 9/11. Nowhere
is that change more apparent than in the
Let me start with an update on our war
on terror. This truly is a war, a global
war--from Kabul to Karachi, from Bali
to Mombasa, from Sanaa, Yemen, to New
York City. Preventing terrorism means
identifying cells and disrupting their
operations. And it means crippling and
dismantling terrorist networks country-by-country,
so that they no longer pose a threat to
the United States.
2002 has been the first full year in this
war, and looking back, much has been accomplished.
We have taken the fight to Al-Qa'ida,
to where they train, recruit, plan, and
live. We have taken away their safe haven
in Afghanistan. We have taken into custody
more than 3,000 Al-Qa'ida leaders and
foot soldiers worldwide. Here in the United
States, we have charged nearly 200 suspected
terrorist associates with crimes. Worldwide,
we have prevented as many as a hundred
terrorist attacks or plots, including
a number here in the U.S.
successes have come because of the singular,
united focus of virtually everyone engaged
in this war--law enforcement, intelligence,
the military, and our diplomatic community.
Every level--federal, state, local, international--has
contributed its unique set of skills.
Nowhere is that more evident than here
in New York. This city has been a leader
in the war against terror since the 1920
bombing of the old J.P. Morgan building.
That tradition of leadership continues
today. Commissioner Kelly has done an
outstanding job in leading the NYPD's
post 9/11 fight. The new Counterterrorism
Division led by Frank Libutti, and the
newly revamped Intelligence Division led
by David Cohen, are models for the nation.
Commissioner, my thanks to you, Frank,
David, and the 40,000 officers and detectives
who serve this city so well.
New York's leadership includes the men
and women of the FBI. Our Assistant Director
in Charge here--Kevin Donovan--has picked
up where the tireless Barry Mawn left
off in the war on terror.
September 11 made the prevention of terrorist
attacks the FBI's top priority and overriding
focus. While we remain committed to our
other important national security and
law enforcement responsibilities, the
prevention of terrorism takes precedence
in our thinking and planning; in our hiring
and staffing; in our training and technologies;
and, most importantly, in our investigations.
With this shift in priorities has come
a major shift in the allocation of resources
within the Bureau. We have doubled the
number of Agents devoted to terrorism.
We have hired nearly 300 new counterterrorism
translators specializing in Middle Eastern
languages. And, we have completely overhauled
our counterterrorism program at Headquarters,
centralizing our management and accountability,
beefing up existing units, and adding
Essential to preventing future terrorist
attacks is improving our intelligence
analysis and predictive capability. The
FBI has always been a collector of intelligence
in pursuing its criminal cases. But with
the mandate of prevention, we are now
restructuring to provide proper analysis
and dissemination of intelligence to all
our partners in the war on terror.
We have taken a number of steps to build
that capacity within the FBI. We set up
a National Joint Terrorism Task Force
at FBI headquarters, staffed by representatives
from 30 different federal, state, and
local agencies. This national task force
coordinates the two-way flow of information
and intelligence between Headquarters
and the JTTFs around the country. We have
quadrupled the number of strategic analysts
at Headquarters. We are building a cadre
of more than 700 analysts nationwide.
a result of our efforts, we will now be
able to produce a greater quantity and
quality of analytical product, and to
share that product more effectively with
policy makers, with the intelligence community
and with our law enforcement partners.
We are also completely upgrading our information
technology capability in the Bureau. Our
longstanding problems with information
technology are well known. What is less
well known is what we are doing to fix
those problems and to add a whole new
set of capabilities to FBI operations.
We have brought in some of the best and
brightest from private industry to lead
this effort. These individuals--along
with a range of outside experts--are bringing
the Bureau into the digital age. From
the rollout of new hardware, to the upgrade
of critical networks, to the redesign
of investigative applications, we are
making progress. Thanks to these new initiatives,
we will soon have a system that we can
mine for data and analysis, and that will
allow Agents to manage their case files
electronically for the first time in history.
In step with these institutional changes
have come important legal and cultural
changes that are enhancing our ability
to prevent terrorism.
Principal among these is the manner in
which September 11 has torn down the legal
walls between intelligence and law enforcement
agencies. For those of you who followed
the 9/11 hearings in Congress this fall,
you may recall meetings between the CIA
and FBI where it was unclear what information
on a hijacker could be legally shared
under the arcane set of rules and laws
that was known as "the Wall."
Since 9/11, we have breached the Wall.
First, thanks to the PATRIOT Act and the
recent FISA Appeals Court decision, we
no longer have legal obstacles to coordination
and information-sharing between the law
enforcement community and the intelligence
agencies. Law enforcement officers can
now coordinate their approach to terrorist
targets without running afoul of the law.
In addition to the collapse of the legal
"Wall," we have also seen the
collapse of the cultural and operational
wall between the FBI and CIA. Those who
focus on stories of the feuding between
the agencies back in the era of J. Edgar
Hoover and Allen Dulles are overlooking
the increased operational integration
between the two agencies since 9/11. From
my daily morning briefings with CIA officers
and George Tenet to the widespread assignment
of executives, Agents, and analysts between
the two agencies since 9/11, the FBI and
the CIA have become integrated at virtually
every level of our operations.
The third wall we are tearing down is
the one between us and our state and local
partners. Our 11,500 FBI Agents are a
small cadre compared to the nation's 670,000
state and local law enforcement officers.
We need every one of those officers to
be fully integrated into the war on terror.
That is why we created the National JTTF;
that is why we have established JTTFs
in all of our field offices; and, that
is why we are standing up regional information
sharing operations that will revolutionize
the way we work together. These efforts
are opening doors to cooperation that
simply did not exist prior to 9/11.
This crumbling of pre 9/11 walls brings
us to the issue of whether America should
create a new domestic intelligence agency
similar to the British MI-5. This idea
is based on a faulty understanding of
counterterrorism that sees a dichotomy
between "intelligence operations"
and "law enforcement operations."
This misunderstanding of counterterrorism
has led some to conclude that we should
separate these two functions and create
a new domestic intelligence agency.
We have just discussed how important it
is to break down walls to enable the sharing
of information. Building new walls is
going in the wrong direction. There is
no reason to separate the two functions
of law enforcement and domestic intelligence.
On the contrary, combining law enforcement
and intelligence grants us ready access
to every weapon in the government's arsenal
against terrorists. We can now make strategic
and tactical choices between our law enforcement
options of arrest and incarceration and
our intelligence options of surveillance
and source development.
The wisdom of this approach has been clearly
borne out. Over the last year, the FBI
has identified, disrupted, and neutralized
a number of terrorist threats and cells.
We have done so in ways an intelligence-only
agency like MI-5 cannot. Why is that?
Because the FBI is uniquely situated for
the counterterrorism mission.