This Joint Intelligence Bulletin is intended to provide information on the 7 January 2012 arrest by the FBI Tampa Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF), as part of a planned law enforcement action, of Florida-based Sami OsmakacUSPER. Osmakac is charged with attempted use of weapons of mass destruction. This information is provided to support the activities of FBI and DHS and to assist federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial, counterterrorism and law enforcement officials to prevent or respond to terrorist attacks against the United States.
February 1, 2012 in Federal Bureau of Investigation
A collection of 25 flyers produced by the FBI and the Department of Justice are distributed to local businesses in a variety of industries to promote suspicious activity reporting. The fliers are not released publicly, though several have been published in the past by news media and various law enforcement agencies around the country. We have compiled this collection from a number of online sources.
Steganography—the practice of concealing data within a carrier—may be used to obscure malicious or criminal information and activity from law enforcement. While steganography dates to the fifth century BC, it has long been regarded as, and remains, one of the most advanced forms of clandestine communication. In modern usage, the Internet allows accessibility to, and broad dissemination of, steganography tools, and its application continues to evolve with technology. Understanding steganography in its current state is essential to its identification and detection.
January 30, 2012 in Documents
We have no specific or credible information indicating a threat to the US Capitol or the National Capital Region (NCR) to coincide with the 2012 State of the Union address. We assess, however, that al-Qa‘ida and its affiliates and allies remain committed to attacking the Homeland and, as of February 2010, al-Qa‘ida identified the NCR and the State of the Union address itself as important targets, presumably for attacks. Moreover, homegrown violent extremists (HVEs) as well as lone offenders could view the event as an attractive target, offering the means to inflict casualties and garner extensive media coverage. Detecting homeland plots involving HVEs and lone offenders continues to challenge law enforcement and intelligence agencies due to the operational independence of the perpetrators, which can reduce or eliminate preoperational indicators.
Local governance in rural Afghanistan is not simple. Older customary local assemblies operate alongside GIRoA officials, Community Development Councils (CDC’s), and insurgent groups. Although we speak of insurgent governments as “shadow governments,” they rarely exist in the shadows for those over whom they wield power. In villages where insurgents continue to exercise control, the insurgents and not GIRoA perform traditional governmental functions; they levy taxes, resolve disputes (they are, in many villages the only law in town), and maintain local defense forces. Western Powers have invested their hope and their treasure in inventing a new form of local control: Community District Councils that come out of the National Solidarity Program (NSP). Managed by the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (MRRD) with funds from NGO’s and from the World Bank, these organizations set priorities for the expenditure of donor money and oversee contracts. Although they offer an alternative to the indiscriminate funding of the past that encouraged favoritism and corruption, these organizations have little authority except when it comes to the stewardship of outside money. As those development funds begin to dry up, will CDC’s vanish? Can they be further empowered?
January 26, 2012 in Joint Chiefs of Staff
This publication provides joint doctrine for planning and executing counter-improvised explosive device (C-IED) operations. It outlines responsibilities, provides command and control considerations, discusses organizational options, details the C-IED process and attack the network methodology, and introduces models for coordinating with C-IED supporting organizations.
January 25, 2012 in U.S. Army
All assets and capabilities at a commander’s disposal have the capacity to inform and influence selected audiences to varying degrees. While specific assets termed as “information-related capabilities” are information-centric in mission and purpose, others are standard capabilities that inform and influence officers use for planning to support commanders’ information strategy and mission objectives. The primary information-related capabilities that support inform and influence activities typically include, but are not limited to, public affairs, military information support operations, combat camera, Soldier and leader engagement, civil affairs, cyber electromagnetic activities, counterintelligence, operations security, military deception, and others so designated by a commander. In addition to the primary information-related capabilities, there are operational capabilities not solely designed to inform or influence that commanders can designate to assist in achieving mission objectives, such as maneuver forces, engineers, and medical units. Success depends on commanders and staffs effectively employing all available operational assets to best shape the information environment.
January 24, 2012 in U.S. Marine Corps
January 24, 2012 in Virginia
January 23, 2012 in Department of Defense
Operational experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan support the continued need to eliminate barriers to information sharing that currently exist on DoD’s multiple networks. A concerted effort to unify the networks into a single information environment providing timely information to commanders will improve command and control, thus increasing our speed of action. Providing an information technology (IT) / National Security Systems (NSS) infrastructure that is accessible anywhere and anytime is key to ensuring the agility of the Department and allowing our most valuable resources, our people, nearly instant access to the information they need to make decisions in the execution of their missions. In turn, the Global Information Grid (GIG) must be designed and optimized to support warfighting functions of advantaged and disadvantaged users, to include mission partners, across the full range of military and National Security operations in any operational environment. The GIG must also be resilient and able to support the missions despite attacks by sophisticated adversaries.
January 21, 2012 in North Atlantic Treaty Organization
In the 20th century, the various governments of Afghanistan were actively involved with the international community in adopting human rights initiatives, including gender equality. However, the conservative nature of Afghan society coupled with weak central governance limited each regime’s ability to extend modern programs beyond the major urban areas. Initiatives that the constitutional monarchy and communist government attempted to implement often faced significant opposition from the countryside and were ultimately eliminated with the rise of the Taliban. Afghanistan joined the international community in ratifying the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in 1948 and established legislation and processes to integrate women into public life from the 1950s through the 1980s. However, in 1996 the Taliban relegated women to a domestic role with brutal enforcement.
January 20, 2012 in Transportation Security Administration
TSA’s Office of Intelligence (TSA-OI) assesses that although counterterrorism pressure has weakened al-Qa’ida (AQ) and al Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), both organizations represent an enduring and evolving threat and remain committed to attacking the Homeland, including the transportation sector. Both organizations have targeted commercial aviation and AQ has repeatedly plotted to attack mass transit. We also remain concerned about the threat posed by homegrown violent extremists (HVE) or lone offenders inspired by AQ’s violent extremist ideology to launch attacks against less secure targets, such as mass transit and passenger bus systems.
The level of corruption across Afghanistan’s public and private sectors represents a threat to the success of ISAF’s mission and the viability of the Afghan state. Corruption undermines the legitimacy and effectiveness of Afghanistan’s government, fuels discontent among the population, and generates active and passive support for the insurgency. Corruption and organized crime also serve as a barrier to Afghanistan’s economic growth by robbing the state of revenue and preventing the development of a strong licit economy, thus perpetuating Afghan dependence on international assistance. Corruption also threatens the process of security transition, as institutions weakened by criminality will be unable to accept the transfer of responsibility for security and governance.
Media Operations is responsible for the Command’s media relations activities, including identifying media to engage with to disseminate information, responding to queries, arranging interviews, and advising senior leaders and IJC members on media issues. Media Operations works with local and international media. The staff also manages the IJC media accreditation and embed programs, and works closely with Regional Commands and NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan (NTM-A) Public Affairs staffs. IJC Media Operations distributes, under its letter head, releases from special operations units.
January 13, 2012 in Multi-National Corps Iraq
Studying past combat helps gain insight into how insurgents may operate in the future. This guide uses short, simple vignettes to highlight common Afghan insurgent tactics. Each vignette focuses on a particular mission profile, such as raids, ambushes, and defending against a cordon and search. While tactics are continually evolving, the Afghans have a well documented history of using similar techniques against foreign militaries. Most of the vignettes in this guide are from the 1980s when Afghan insurgents fought the Soviet Union. Despite being more than 20 years old, many of the tactics remain in use today. For a more complete description of Afghan insurgent tactics against the Soviets, MCIA strongly recommends reading The Other Side of the Mountain by Ali Jalali and Les Grau, which this guide is based on. The final three vignettes in this guide are from recent operations in Afghanistan and demonstrate the evolution of tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) by Afghan insurgents.
A body of open-source reporting suggests that fighters leaving the Afghan insurgency are doing so in greater numbers this winter (1,865 fighters) than last winter (443 fighters). As with the winter of 2009-2010, the majority of defecting fighters have continued to reintegrate into Afghan Government entities in the comparatively peaceful northern and western provinces of Afghanistan. The Taliban have rejected these reports, claiming that those joining the government are not Taliban fighters. Because of variations in the level of detail provided in media reports, this compilation could understate the number of reported militants leaving the battlefield. However, even 2,000 defections over six months would not appear to represent a major blow to an insurgency estimated to have 25,000 to 36,000 current fighters,12 and it is likely that at least some of those taking advantage of government reintegration programs were not committed fighters.
January 10, 2012 in Afghanistan
January 10, 2012 in U.S. Air Force
January 9, 2012 in U.S. Marine Corps
In certain parts of the US government, when an operation has unintended negative second or third-order consequences, they are called “blowback.” The radical Islamic movements in the Pashtun areas today were always present, but putting them on steroids in the 1980′s was pretty short-sighted by any reasonable accounting — a classic case of “blowback.” During the Soviet-Afghan war, the Pakistanis had their own agenda. The Pakistani Army’s intelligence branch, called the Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate, or ISI, became extremely powerful by cooperating with the United States and the government of Saudi Arabia to channel roughly $7.2 billion dollars worth of covert foreign military aid to their preferred Mujahideen clients. To control the Mujahideen, the ISI formed seven resistance groups, each with a notional political party associated with it. These became known as “the Peshawar Seven.” CIA oversight of the covert money was weak, and much of it went into ISI’s pockets.
Max Planck Institute Brandenburg License Plate Scanning, Access to Telecommunications Data and Mobile Phone Localization Study
January 9, 2012 in Germany
A report and presentation compiled by researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law regarding controversial police powers recently introduced in the German state of Brandenburg including automated license plate searches, mobile phone localization and access to telecommunications data.