Focus
Conference on "Intelligence and the Threat from International Terrorism"
(Volume 2, Number 3-4, Autumn-Winter 2001.)
16 lis 2001 05:01:00
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Zagreb, Croatia, November 30 - December 01, 2001
Participants

Main topics of the Conference

Section I

The politics of the sociology of terrorism.
The use of intelligence and counter-intelligence by terrorist organizations

Section II

Old means for new tasks: Humint and Covert Operations
Merging police intelligence and national intelligence

Section III

Legal, ethical and media aspects of "Intelligence Wars".

Section IV

Preuzmite članak u PDF formatu

Problems and prospects concerning international intelligence cooperation and joint action in counter-terrorism.
Lessons from the EUROPOL-cooperation

Participants:

General Boyadjiev Boyadjiev
Dr. Krešimir Ćosić
Professor Stevan Dedijer
Admiral Davor Domazet
Mr. Drago Ferš
Dr. Janos Gömbös
Mr. Richard Kerr
Admiral Pierre Lacoste
Dr. Klaus Lange
Mr. Ivo Lueić
Mr. Miroslav Međimorec
Mr. Doug Smith
Dr. Miroslav Tuđman
General Markus Wolf



Topics


 

Section I

The politics of the sociology of terrorism.
The use of intelligence and counter-intelligence by terrorist organizations

Tuđman:

Last year we discussed Intelligence at the beginning of the 21st Century. This year, we will be focussing on the events of September 11, and the consequences they will have for national and international security policy. This morning we will begin with a general framework of the issue. The floor is open.

Boyadjiev:

I would like to start with a short slide presentation. I recently spent a month in the States, and left New York late in the evening on September 10 with the last Lufthansa flight, just hours before the airport was closed. By chance I was taking pictures of the Twin Towers on September 10 from the other side of the Hudson river just before leaving around 5.00 pm. I was in the air when the tragedy occurred. I felt guilty to some extent that we, the professionals, had allowed such a thing to happen. I'm sure we'll discuss this later. I collected some unique slides from the Internet and would like to start our meeting with a visualization of the tragic events that have provided the incentive for meetings such as this all over the world (slides are shown).
Since September 11, the world has changed radically and it is not necessary to explain why. What can we now expect? International terrorism is on the move. Many assumptions are no longer valid. Many elements of national security doctrine seem obsolete now and need to be changed. We can expect an increase in left-wing, right-wing, religious, antiglobalist, minority, nationalistic, and other forms of radicalism, and new types of attacks. Before starting the discussion I would like to show you something else. It's called the "Handbook for the Dedicated Terrorist" and it is based on the way of thinking and ideology of the Basque terrorist organization, ETA, presented by one of its leaders, Ricardo Garcia. I took some points from it to provide an overview of their philosophy and operations. What do they consider their main weapons and means to perform terrorist acts and reach their goals? What do the terrorists believe in?
The first weapon, according to Ricardo Garcia, is motive, and he lists several rules: 1) Do not kill without motive; 2) your reasons for acting must be shared by others; 3) Be an honorable David against the Goliaths; 4) All rationales are valid; 5) Seek the support of reliable people; 6) Keep attacking until victory is achieved.
The second weapon is efficiency, and the rules are: 7) Perform the violence with the precision of brain surgery (the tragedy on September 11 was performed in this manner); 8) A dead dog doesn't bite; 9) fast, confident and cheerful; 10) Be mercurial and militant; 11) Prepare "the picture", the background; 12) Keep that "patriotic flame" or religious flame burning; 13) The people's cause always is a good cause; pretend to be fighting for a real cause; 14) Kill with your brain; 15) God is accepted for he punishes and forgives; 16) Throw the stone and hide the hand. 17) Plan the terrorism like seeds. 18) Cleverness and caution (it's foolish to put your head in the lion's mouth); 19) Discretion; and 21) When you hunt deer, don't settle for a hare.
The third weapon of the terrorists, according to Ricardo Garcia, is the moral weapon: 22) Who defines the morals?; 23) Let the circumstances be your shield; 24) Cover yourself in the cloak of "progress"; 25) The violence will never appear necessary unless it is committed; 26) A drop of oil leaves a bigger stain than a bucket of water; 27) In the name of peace; 28) To harvest you must also sow; 29) Little streams make great rivers; and last 30) Do not forget that the hangman can also be hanged.

Dedijer:

What is your source?

Boyadjiev:

These are quotations from the Philosophy of Ricardo Garcia, the chief ideologist of the Basque terrorist organization ETA.

Dedijer:

Who published it?

Boyadjiev:

Somebody found it in Spanish and translated it into Bulgarian, and I got it from him.

Kerr:

The only comment I'd have is that it seems to me ETA has violated all the fundamental principles you just laid out. They violated their own guidelines, because if you look where ETA is right now, it's lost any popular support. It has very little popular support.

Boyadjiev:

This was not written recently, but years ago.

Kerr:

They didn't follow their own creed very well.

Smith:

You're right that they did break all their rules. However, I think that the terrorists probably thought they were following their rules. We must remember that most people, but particularly fanatics, are able to convince themselves that what they are doing is right and consistent with their own rules. They set up rules and they believe they're following them.

Boyadjiev:

Since we will be talking about the politics and sociology of terrorism, I thought it would be interesting to share this.

Tuđman:

There is probably an explanation for that. Do you know what year it was published?

Boyadjiev:

I do not know exactly; probably about 10 years ago.

Tuđman:

That is exactly what I would like to discuss. The impact of terrorism on international security policy. Why is September 11 so significant? Because this is probably the first time terrorism became a global activity. Terrorists are attacking strategic targets using methods and techniques offered by the global market. That is why the character and nature of terrorist activities are changing; globalization is being utilized. Terrorism has become an international activity, because it is financed in one country, training takes place in another, and in a third, the operation is performed. So it is not just national anymore; international borders have been crossed. So now we have to find new answers for old problems, but in a completely new global context.
From that point of view, we can also evaluate international security policy, and contemporary security problems and international conflicts. The case of southeast Europe and the former Yugoslavia, for example. Even today, there is no clear understanding of the sources of the conflict. Why did it happen and what was the background? Without this understanding, there can be no proper diagnosis of the situation. The international community could not reach agreement on its objectives or on ways to resolve the crisis. How to manage the crisis does not mean how to resolve the crisis. The system of international security is not designed to resolve the problem. The same problem applies to military management. The military, in my experience during the last ten years, was advocating political solutions. But the most we can say is that some countries are supporting terrorism in one way or another and that terrorist activities today are adapting themselves to the global environment and using its resources. We see that terrorists do not care anymore about the consequences. The focus now is not on threatening somebody, but protecting ourselves and our interests. Another threat which has developed as the result of global terrorist activities is that today the lines are blurred between national, public, external, and internal security. That is important because services are divided along that principle. If we change this, the internal and external division among the services is in question. The intervention by NATO was rationalized according to Article 5, which talks not about attacks from another state or country, but about protection of NATO itself. Another point is that no country can fight terrorism alone. That means we need to interpret partnership in another way. I believe that the basic principle of international, bilateral, and multilateral relations today is the application of pressure. I don't believe that pressure should be a guiding principle because pressure, by definition, is legalized force applied by entity against another. Obviously there are overlapping and conflicting national interests, but how do we resolve this? Today the world order can be described somewhere between a multiple and monopolar system, because America is the biggest country wielding the greatest influence on the world order. The problem is that individual human rights are being transformed into universal human rights, and imposed upon all the other countries of the world. Many of these individual human rights are not suited to Europe, and other countries do not accept these definitions. If the approach is that certain principles or definitions are superior to all others and should be imposed on everyone else, then we have a problem. That leads to negative consequences. If we are talking about national security, intelligence, and threats of international terrorism, we have to think within a global framework. The world is at a turning point, but what kind of new world order can we expect? What do we want? The bipolar world disappeared during the 1990s. For decades now, the Security Council has represented only those countries who wield the most power and influence. Without a consensus between all the countries, our task will be impossible.

Dedijer:

On September 12, I wrote down three pages of notes, and posed three questions. What is terrorism? What causes it? How can we fight it? And I'm going to apply these three questions to the September 11 terrorist attack. It may just be an illusion but it seems to me there have never been so many people living in freedom in the world as there are today, so many people who have been freed from their chains. Terrorism comes from those who have not been freed. The little group says "I'm going to speak on behalf of my community. I want them to be free. I don't have tanks and I don't have planes. I don't have any weapons except terror. I'm going to use that." The interesting thing is that suddenly we have Putin and Russia joining the war against terrorism. I read in Le Monde a long article about two significant minorities in China who have announced a terrorist attack against the Chinese government. They want freedom from China, just as Chechnya wants freedom from Russia. And the ETA from Spain. The Irish have been fighting the English for 180 years. The United States' struggle for freedom began with a terrorist act and a bunch of people going to Boston and refusing to pay the British. We have to consider what causes terrorism and who are the people it engages.

Tuđman:

There is a problem with such an explanation. In the September 11 events, there was no political objective, and nobody knows who exactly is behind it. The group behind it is not asking for anyone to be freed and anything like that. They are just making threats. I think we can expect to see more terrorist activity using the resources of a globalized world to threaten vital world centers, and committed by a group of people who are simply dissatisfied with something; for example, how wealth is distributed in their country.

Kerr:

It seems to me that the terrorists involved in September 11 were fundamentally different, at least in terms of motivation, than terrorists in Ireland and other countries. I think you're right, Miro; I think that for the most part terrorism has had specific objectives: changes in government, independence, liberation, or ethnic separation. In some ways I think one can look at September 11 more historically as anarchism aimed at destruction. Like the anarchists of the late 1800's and the early 1900's, those involved in the September 11 event were not trying to change the government to something else. They were trying to destroy government. They were trying to destroy a global order they felt was for a variety of reasons evil, but their goal was not to overthrow the government. They were trying to cause instability and panic.

Lange:

I would like to comment. We have to distinguish between classical terrorism and new terrorism. Classical terrorism aims at destabilizing a specific system by attacking its representatives. In many ways, classical terrorism has tried to go for hard targets. Of course there is always collateral damage, but this is not the intention. Now we are seeing something completely new. Concerning September 1l , there is no visible system which was destabilized by this action. I think at this stage we know much less than we believe we know. Of course, we know the people involved had a link to Islam. But I doubt that the people sitting on the planes were the ones who planned the operation. I also do not believe that Mr. Bin Laden was coordinating each phase from faraway Afghanistan. There is more behind it. Just for the sake of terminology, I think we should distinguish between classical terrorism and new terrorism, even though we do not really know yet what new terrorism is. But the ETA, IRA, and Red Brigades were something else.

Tuđman:

In a globalized world, it's difficult to identify the leader or organizer of the action. Everybody uses Internet, but who's in control of the Internet. Who are the users? It is difficult to locate and identify them. That is one of the main problems with the new terrorism.

Lange:

Just one additional remark. I feel it is important to differentiate between soft and hard targets when it comes to fighting new terrorism. In the case of classical terrorism, you knew vaguely what the targets would be; now you don't know. This has consequences for the struggle against new terrorism. We will have to make radical changes in organization and personnel. This is a precondition for success. Changes will have to be more radical than we think.

Lučić:

Classical terrorism has the aim of waging war against a certain state or authority. New age terrorism, meaning Islamic terrorism, is attempting to halt the process of globalisation. That is the crucial difference between the two.
Dedijer: Conflicts among civilizations cannot motivate twenty people to sacrifice their lives, sit in a plane, and hit targets. This idea of somebody overthrowing western civilization is nonsense. You can't overthrow a civilization. But this is a concrete case of a terrorist act with a political background.

Ćosić:

After September 11, I gave an interview to a Croatian newspaper here in Zagreb. The objective was to discuss and identify some unexpected technical and technological changes in the world of terrorism at the beginning of the 21st century. In the interview, I introduced terms like smart terrorists, well-educated terrorists, high-tech terrorism, etc. I was surprised later when I saw that the terrorism we witnessed on September 11 was committed by well trained, well-educated and extremely well- organized terrorist cells. The complexity and quality of their training, recruiting methods, coordination and synchronization, low profile preparation, communication and action, autonomy in target selections, and team leadership were amazing. What contributed most to their success was the fact that they were unknown for a long period to the majority of intelligence organizations. The training technology they had at their disposal was really high-tech in comparison with classical terrorism training methods; for example, flight simulators to practice various flight missions without any government surveillance and so on. So they had the infrastructure necessary to generate the skills they needed to successfully execute the terrorism missions, including financial support, civilian communication, infrastructure, and Internet. We know know we were mistaken about the infrastructure the terrorists have at their disposal. The main threat now, in the age of information, is the abuse of modern technologies for purposes of terrorism.

Ferš:

I would like to return to three questions we posed earlier. What is terrorism, what caused it, and how do terrorists operate? We agree that the world has changed during the last year, but that terrorism is nothing new. When I prepared my remarks for this conference I tried to formulate a concrete definition for terrorism. I must admit that I failed. In the past we had a different definition, but as the world changed, the definition changed. We knew how to define it in 1933 in the League of Nations. Crime and terrorism were at that time synonymous. Then later, in 1983, the United States US Code, Section 2625 L (d) came up with a different definition. And the Federal Bureau of Investigation has yet another definition. But I think that after September 11, the European Commission and the Security Council have devised a good definition for international terrorism as a new phenomenon, and have separated this type of international terrorism from other extreme acts of the past. I think there is a difference between so-called national terrorism and extremism. What we have now is not terrorism, but extremism. Why has this type of international terrorism appeared now? Some say the people who aren't free or don't feel free are the ones who commit this terrorism. Maybe this is accurate; they are imprisoned in their minds. Yesterday we spoke about this, and I think we came up with a good explanation. Most of the world is uneducated, but many have money. Without money there can be no terrorism. Everything is an expense. But what is important is that they are unable to participate in world politics. They are segregated in one part of the world and have no opportunity to create policy.

Wolf:

I fully agree with the way Stevan and the last speaker from Slovenia, Mr. Ferš, analyzed the problem. No question, the well-organized, terrible terrorist attacks of September 11th opened a new page in the history of terrorism and raised new questions about how to combat it. But I don't agree that it's a totally new situation in terms of terrorism, and I think we should discuss a revamped strategy for the intelligence services which addresses the new aspects of international terrorism. There have been numerous examples of terrorism in the 20th century, but since the 1970s, it has become a central focus for intelligence services in the East and West, who have the task of reconnaissance, infiltration and, if possible, paralyzing the opponent. If a division were made between classic terrorism and a totally new terrorism, it would be difficult to formulate a strategy. In the past, there was a big difference in the approaches used by the socialist and Western countries. What did they consider terrorism? Their views were different. In socialist countries, top priority was given to hijack attempts by people trying to flee those countries. But there were also terrorist occupations of embassies and attacks against people or objects. From the point of view of western countries, particularly the United States, every national movement in Africa or PLO was regarded as a terrorist organization, Yassir Arafat was the head of terrorism, and so on. There were national aspects; for example, the IRA or ETA, but there were also international aspects, and communication existed between the different terrorist entities. Now of course we have to consider the Muslims, Bin Laden, and his kind of organization, but if we limit our attention to them, I think it will be difficult to find a real strategy.
The first reactions of the American people, the American administration, and the American president after the terrible attacks in New York and Washington are understandable. But after the declaration of war and the implementation of military measures, reactions have changed. Of course it is a political question, and the politicians must decide if it is possible to combat international terrorism with war and consider the consequences. President Bush's declared war aims were very vague, and lacked a clear definition of goals and a strategy for the intelligence services.
We will discuss today and tomorrow methods and problems of cooperation, but the aims must be declared clearly. Now there is confusion among the politicians as to whether Iraq is a war aim or not, whether Iraq is involved in the terrorist activities, and in Bin Laden's terrorist organization or other organizations of this kind. This is a difficult question which requires an answer, and the services must inform the politicians so that they have a clear picture. Only if the aims are clearly defined can a strategy be formulated by the services to combat international terorrism. We need at least an abstract division in order to analyze the new problems and utilize the existing information. Who decides where the centers of international terrorism are? What countries support international terrorism? Should only one government have the power to declare which countries are terrorist? This is a difficult problem. The main goal is to find a strategy that provides a clear analysis of the situation. But international terrorism cannot be defeated over a short time period by war. We will be confronted with international terrorism the rest of our lives.

Kerr:

I tend to agree with this question of definition. First of all the definition of terrorism depends where you sit. From an American perspective, I can tell you September 11 is quite different. This is the first major attack inside the United States. People around this table have had that experience, but it is new to the US. The attacks on the US embassies in Africa, the barracks in Saudi Arabia, and the USS Cole involved US personnel overseas. That is seen as an acceptable risk when you send your military forces and civilian representatives abroad. But when it happens in the United States it changes everything for us. Calling it a war is a way to mobilize the country to a full effort. Unfortunately, the term war is not a good one because you win or lose wars. We're not going to lose this war, I'll tell you. I'm not sure how you win it precisely, but we're not going to lose it. But from an American perspective it would be a mistake for you not to think of it as a war. It is seen that way and that means that when the president says you're either with us or you're for them, he means it and so do the American people.

Dedijer:

This is the first attack on the United States since 1814, when the great-grandfather of a friend of mine, Scott Gerald Cockburn, burned down the White House. Since then, the United States had not been attacked until September 11th. We understand the psychological reaction. There are two reactions. One is from the gut. I am going to kill him! That's one reaction. The other is a policy reaction, a US change of policy, and I will discuss this later.

Boyadjiev:

I want to react to what Dick Kerr said. Emotionally speaking, yes, it is a war. It is a war for the American people. Politically speaking and internationally speaking, it's a reaction against terrorism. It has its political and economic component, and there is cooperation between police and intelligence services, with war as the military reaction. I put war in last place as a reaction against terrorism. We still do not have a uniformly accepted definition of terrorism. I believe a double standard regarding terrorism still exists and that's not only when we talk about the past, but also the present. One of the things that we have to agree upon during the first, political stage of cooperation is to accept a common definition for international terrorism. I know it's difficult, but without one, it will be impossible to fight the common enemy, terrorism, as a joint entity. And several more things. Drago Ferš mentioned that terrorism needs money. Here I want to suggest another topic for discussion. Terrorism not only needs money, terrorism makes money, a lot of dirty money. I'll give an example and I dare anyone to say that I am wrong. For the month before September 11, banking analyses in the States showed that options to buy shares in United Airlines, American Airlines, and some insurance companies ranged somewhere about 240 - 270 per day. On the September 10, there were 2800 options to buy shares of those companies during the upcoming week. For me, that is an indication that not only Bin Laden but many other parties knew that the shares of the airline and insurance companies would fall. So terrorism for me has a financial side: making money. A large part of it will finance further terrorism, but another part of it makes dirty profits, and it ought to be punished.

Međimorec:

Every one of us fully supports the United States in the war against terrorism; there is no doubt that we all oppose terrorism. But if I may say - there are two different perceptions of terrorism: that of the USA and that of many other countries which are willing to fight terrorism, but also want to investigate the sources of its growth and expansion. Are the roots in the economic gap between the rich and poor, cultural and religious differences, poverty, or political inconsistencies? Different civilizations? When we try to identify the sources and nature of terrorism, we are, metaphorically speaking, passing through a murky forest where we'll be confronted by all sorts of hobgoblins. There are many obstacles to reaching a clear understanding of the terrorism phenomena. In the Croatian media, terrorism has been analyzed from a philosophical, sociological, religious, and historical point of view - it has been given a political perspective. Huntington and Fukuyama are often quoted. We are eager to understand the causes of terrorism. There was some of it during the national liberation processes of nations during the disintegration of former Yugoslavia. Terrorism, disguised as humanitarian aid and aid to resist communism and Serbian hegemony, appeared in Croatia in 1992 at the beginning of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. As the disintegration of Yugoslavia progressed, it moved to Bosnia, Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, and even to southern Serbia. Terrorism has shown another face - that of the national liberation movements both in Kosovo and Macedonia. Terrorists, with foreign financial aid, have misused and compromised a just cause: Albanian national liberation from the harsh rule of Serbia. Should we call all Albanians terrorists if the majority of the Albanian population opposes terrorism and its methods? It is not simple and clear. Terrorism can have a "legal face" as well. It can present itself in a humanitarian and social role, using cultural and religious methods of operation. Though many terrorist methods are already known, it is distinguish villains from true humanitarian or social workers. We must take all these elements into consideration when analyzing and trying to understand terrorism. It can be the driving force behind actions of enslaved, impoverished, humiliated, and desperate people. Terrorism can be committed in the name of ideas like Huntington's "The Clash of Civilizations", and can collect or even steal money for revolutionary purposes. It can also be backed by extreme political ideas. We should talk about all these disguises terrorism utilizes because this will help us uncover its true nature. And it is not a simple task.

Smith:

There are different kinds of terrorist outbreaks. In this case I think the Bin Laden terrorist attacks are in some ways similar to the outbreaks of violence in the Middle Ages in Europe and Asia, wherein peasants rebelled in a most destructive way but lacked a program; they were just rebelling against a situation they considered intolerable. They attacked whatever power structure existed because that power structure was not treating them well or because it was the only thing to attack. Inevitably the rebellion was crushed and the movement died. There are some similarites between the medieval revolts and the Bin Laden attacks [both are fighting against things they don't understand] but there are also great differences. And the Bin Laden problem will not disappear quickly. It is a major problem; it will go on for a long time and our children will probably also have to deal with it. Whether we like it or not, it is a kind of clash between civilizations. But by a combination of firmness, often involving military force, [and good international cooperation] and understanding of cultural differences, we will prevail. As always in such cases it is important to understand the motivation of the terrorists so that the appropriate strategy can be devised.
I would like to make another point. Bush's declaration of war was both necessary politically [to mobilize America first and then the world] and morally correct. Americans were terribly mad; if Bush had not acted as he did the country's morale would have been destroyed. The question of Iraq is a separate question but Iraq is certainly part of the terrorist problem. In all likelihood, Iraq was responsible for the first attack on the World Trade Center. Saddam's Iraq is known to support and train terrorists and to have used them extensively for their own purposes. Saddam tried to blow up Bush's father in 1992 when Bush visited Kuwait. Saddam is unquestionably a user and supporter of terrorism and is also directing an extensive program to develop weapons of mass destruction. I think that we would be irresponsible if we allow Saddam to continue to develop weapons of mass destruction and support terrorism. If we did, the result would be an attack even more destructive than that on the World Trade Center. We knew that Bin Laden was planning something, we knew he was a terrorist leader, we knew he had a worldwide link and a worldwide organization. Unfortunately it took this massive attack to mobilize the Americans to do something about it. I think once mobilized there will be a movement led by America to destroy terrorist capabilities around the world, including that of terrorist states. Iraq is a brutal dictatorship. If we don't do something about them, they may well attack the United States suddenly and without warning, like the attack on Pearl Harbor, only much worse. To summarize, as the leader of the United States, Bush was absolutely right to react the way he did. In marked contrast to the way his predecessor handled Bin Laden attacks, Bush has been thoughtful, effective and relentless. He devised a strategy and then acted. He did not merely shoot missiles the next day and then ignore the problem.

Tuđman:

The focus should be to keep the nation together and create political support for actions aimed at protecting national interests and values. But will the same principles be used to evaluate how other nations react in a similar situation? That is international security policy's main problem. Today every government in the world is reacting against terrorism on a political or professional level. But I would like to stress once again a need for vision in international security policy. And that vision can be developed and accepted only if all principles are equally valid for everyone.

Smith:

Those terms are very hard to come by.

Tuđman:

Of course.

Kerr:

But I would disagree with you in a sense. I think you underestimate the implications of September 11 for larger US policy, even beyond terrorism. What that brought to the front is that we waited until we were attacked and then responded. I think you will find the United States is going to be much more proactive in dealing with future threats, whether they are nuclear, chemical, or biological weapons. The US is not going to wait until it is attacked to respond. It is going to be very aggressive and identify direct threats beyond terrorism in the area of weapons of mass destruction and so on. In information warfare against the United States we are also going to be more aggressive. So if you think we're going to be passive in the future about actions like this, I think you're mistaken.

Tuđman:

My comment was more an observation on some prior events, not on that one. But if the United States is going to act alone, then September 11 will be interpreted as a threat against only the United States. In that case, we would have one type of international security system. If a system of international security is organized to protect most or all other countries, then the system will be different. That is the dilemma we are faced with.

Kerr:

I think we will act alone; we would prefer to act in concert but if not, we will act alone. I think it is of sufficient urgency and importance. We would prefer the former, but we will do the latter.

Dedijer:

This morning President Bush stated that Iraq is almost an enemy.

Kerr:

It's not almost, it is.

Dedijer:

Tony Blair said "no, let's finish Afghanistan first. Let's forget Iraq." Chirac just shrugged his shoulders. So if the United States wants to go alone, what can we do about it.

Lučić:

Blair said that yesterday, but he changed his mind today. There is a problem in defining terrorism. Different agencies have different definitions. United States DOD, State Department, and FBI all have different definitions because they stand on different ground. Here we also have different views, because we are looking at the problem from different points of view: the European, the small countries, and the US.
I can give you an interesting example - a car bomb explosion in Mostar, BiH in 1997 that went off and destroyed 94 apartments, 96 cars, 13 businesses, shops and stores, wounded 3 people seriously and approximately 40 lightly. Police conducted an investigation and arrested a Saudi, Ahmad Zuhair. Zuhair went to trial but the court didn't even consider charging him with terrorism, because in Bosnia and Herzegovina you can only be charged with terrorism if you deemed to be working against Bosnia and Herzegovina interests. Zuhair was a Mujahedeen in the 3rd Corps of Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina; he came to BiH to fight for BiH; therefore it was ruled he could not be considered its enemy! That was the position Zuhair's attorney argued and the Court accepted it. Zuhair was found guilty not of terrorism but of disturbing public order and possessing illegal substances. Bosnia and Herzegovina's law still states that it is a crime to act against a foreign state, international organization, or liberation movement! This article is the same as in ex-Yugoslavia, which cooperated closely with a number of so-called, liberation movements.
This is a completely different point of view than that of the US or Europe.

Kerr:

I believe international law considers terrorism to be indiscriminate attacks on civilians without a military objective. Attacks on military or government facilities during a war are not considered terrorism.

Kerr:

Over the past eight years, there have been several major terrorist attacks on US facilities. In Africa, the Embassies, the Saudi barracks, and the USS Cole.The US approach to those problems has been fundamentally legalistic. It has chosen to pursue the terrorist using the FBI and legal means to bring terrorists to the courts. It did at one point send some missiles into Afghanistan in a token response, but its real response has been in the courts. As a result of the court action, there has been an extraordinary amount of information published in the press, particularly during the trial of the people in New York following the first bombing of the New York Trade Center. Nearly all the information on how we identify the terrorists, how they were tracked, how they were followed through cell phones, computers, and money transfers was revealed. They were tracked after the fact, of course, but we talked about how law enforcement began to study the techniques they use to get into the United States. How they got through immigration, how they used their passports, how they moved money, how they communicated, how they planned; all of this was laid out in great detail in the courts. It was also done in later investigations, so whoever wants a blueprint on how we track and found the terrorists has a great one here. Even the dumbest of us could figure out how to avoid intelligence surveillance, and these terrorists are not dumb. I don't think they are geniuses, but they are smart, worldly, and clever enough to understand how to use our collection techniques against us, how to avoid being tracked, and how to avoid being caught. We not only told them how to get into the country undetected, we also told them what things we could not do well and things that we wished we would have done. In typical American fashion we gave them all the information they needed to avoid us. They also understood better then we the disconnect between foreign and domestic intelligence. It was easy to operate in the United States, to build an infrastructure, and to operate relatively free without detection from the authorities. The Iranians had quite a comprehensive infrastructure in the 1980s throughout the United States. Nearly every nationality is represented; there are close ties between major populations of foreign born groups, so almost every country has a infrastructure in which they can operate. Before 1990, people didn't understand how easy it was to operate in the United States. Foreigners believed we were far better at domestic surveillance monitoring than we were. We looked better than we really were. You could do a lot of things below our level of surveillance in the United States. I think they realized after the bombings in Africa, Saudi Arabia, and USS Cole that it was a very porous society. It was easy to get in and out, and our system for passports and immigration was fairly shoddy.The various organizations like the Nationalization Service and Customs do not communicate with each other. Foreign intelligence, despite its shortcomings, and certainly major shortcomings prior to 11 September 11 , had information that the US was targeted and that there was a real potential for attack inside the country. Fundamentally, civilian organizations lack the culture of intelligence organizations; they don't know how to organize analysis, they don't know how to disseminate information to each other or pass information across organizational lines and cooperate on operational activities. They have a long way to go, and I think it's problematic just how effective it's going to be. Not only because of the level of difficulty, but because those who feel strongly about social rights, human rights, and legal freedom in the United States are going to be very concerned about an internal police force. The United States citizens have always opposed a national police connecting everybody. They like it the way it is now with just cities, counties, and states acting independently. Most of these organizations lack experience in information processing.

Boyadjiev:

After your brilliant introduction, Dick, I would say that we had read each other's minds if I believed in extra-sensory perception. But we are thinking on the same wave length, because I wanted to summarize everything you said into a few sentences myself.
One thing that was clearly demonstrated on September 11 was the fact that the terrorists took full advantage of all the achievements of democracy - mobile phones, credit cards, technologies, and information. They did not need a special intelligence structure to get the information you mentioned. They took it from newspapers, Internet and so on. The terrorists have at their disposal all or most of the information they need to plan acts which result in such devastation. You raised another question I was going to raise as a discussion topic: the boundary between rights on one side and regulations and limitations on the other. Since we are living in a new and changed world, a new balance between liberties and human rights, and regulations and limitations must be achieved. We cannot afford to make available information that can be used for evil purposes. It's a matter of discussion, but I am afraid that's one of the big problems humanity, civilization, and democracy are going to face. I recall something that Mark Twain wrote many years ago: "The American people have many rights, plus the wisdom not to use all of them". It's probably time now to figure out how to best use these rights and liberties. The way this issue is addressed in the United States will influence the entire civilized world. It will produce a lot of negative reaction but we must find a balance.
My contribution to the discussion we are going to start now is based on a specific case in which I was heavily involved in late 1990- early 1991 prior to the Desert Storm operation in Iraq. At that time, I was Executive Secretary (deputy minister) in the Ministry of the Interior. Bulgarian Intelligence got a signal that an international terrorist group was preparing a rocket attack on a certain foreign embassy in Sofia. The international terrorist group had been operating outside of Bulgaria and in Sofia, and consisted of a Japanese member of the Japanese Red Army, a Philippine from a Philippine terrorist organization, a Palestinian Arab, and money coming from Colombia, South America. It was an entirely new pattern of terrorism with an indication of international backing from Saddam Hussein. After picking up that signal, our service exchanged it with partner services. The result was true international cooperation between representatives of several foreign services. The terrorist operation did not transpire that time, but it illustrated several things. First of all, it demonstrated a new form of terrorist internationalism. A wide variety of different groups, with different aims, combined to perform an operation against the United States on Bulgarian soil. Financing was coming from new, unexpected sources. Many of the mechanisms of the planned operation were not discovered, but it still showed that international terrorism was on the move. I do not make a parallel here between this and what happened on September 11th. But one of the conclusions I would like to draw is that we cannot oppose international terrorism if we do not internationalize our efforts to fight it. New forms of cooperation are needed. For many years I characterized what was needed by using a variation of the old-new "slogan": "Spies of the world, unite!" I say this because I disagree with the opposing view: "If you're not with us,we'll do it alone." One entity cannot fight everything and everybody around the world. We need to cooperate. So it is better to look for new ways to cooperate.
I will go back to the operation I was talking about to cover one more aspect. How did the terrorists get their information? It turned out that they didn't need a lot of intelligence and counterintelligence. They just needed a corrupt customs officer at the border to import the weapons, bring the rocket and launchers, and prepare the operation. It was not that difficult to engage a co-conspirator in Bulgaria to rent an apartment with a direct line of vision to the Embassy. Sophisticated intelligence or connections in the Bulgarian or Foreign Intelligence services were not needed. The terrorist organization once again took full advantage of the liberties within democratic societies. Using public information, they can predict repercussions, learn how to avoid them, and operate on another plane.
I suspect at one point that someone played a bad joke on the CIA. Director George Tenet once said that the CIA's classic mission is to separate fact from fiction. I suspect there was some information coming through the information channels which was probably considered too far-fetched and, instead of continuing through the channels, was blocked somewhere in the middle.

Kerr:

I think there was generalized information about the threat. It was not specific information. It is quite clear that all the pieces were not put together as well as they should have been, both by foreign intelligence and certainly by the FBI and the people inside. I don't think it was a question of it not going forward, I think it was a question of less than complete analysis and more fragmentary information. In hindsight, a lot of things were seen that made sense. Hindsight's a marvelous thing. Sometimes things that seemed disconnected before look different and fit together perfectly after the fact. So it looks a lot better in hindsight than it did at first. I think your description is a very complete one in terms of the nature of the terrorist ability to use our information against us. Then it kind of goes back to the point that was made earlier on technology. You don't want to think of them as masterminds, because they were using technology that was available to everybody. They just used it rather cleverly.

Dedijer:

I have a question of Mssrs. Kerr and Smith. What was the reaction of your intelligence colleagues on September 11th? How did they react? Were they surprised? A little more difficult question is: how is the United States intelligence community going to change? Now, what you said about internal security sounds like something President Truman said when establishing the CIA. It's easy for the Communist countries. They can control everything, stop everything, say anything, provide no information, and so on. Now is that the way you want to go? What was your reaction to the event and how is the community going to change, in your personal opinion?

Smith:

My reaction was anger because I thought we had not done a good job collecting intelligence, and I think the answer is, we don't have to reorganize, what we have to do is get better. We have to stop doing some of things that we were doing, like social things and making sure that everyone gets promoted, all sexes and all races and that sort of stuff. What we have to do is return to being very good human intelligence officers. We have to make a greater effort to get sources because what you need in intelligence service is sources and I don't think have enough sources. That's what we have to do.

Kerr:

I was going to answer his question. I would agree, but would say my first reaction was that it was a disaster because intelligence did not accomplish its fundamental mission. I also believe that law enforcement, policy people, and many others bear responsibility. But intelligence is the first line of defense and it failed to do what it is supposed to do. The reason it was less effective is scale. The size of the CIA and the cost of operations against terrorism were small scale. The intelligence effort by analysts and overseas operations conducted against terrorism is far less than the cost of a single US carrier. Put into the context of US Defense activity and US defense spending, intelligence is cheap. If you're going to do the kinds of things that Doug is talking about, you need to put much more effort into it, you need more expertise and human intelligence, and you need more sophisticated counterintelligence and analysis. We've been unwilling meet the costs.

Ćosić:

How can we improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the intelligence community? I am definitely not an expert, but in papers I wrote a couple of years ago about integrated strategic approaches to regional conflict management, I presented ideas that could be useful as early warning tools in the war against terrorism. New analytical tools and methods can help predict potential terrorist attacks. The problems are complex so a new creative use of the methods and tools is needed. The scientific community and decision makers have to be more involved. And better education and training is the best preparation for preventing and eliminating terrorism. Integration and coordination of information, analytical processing of information, and decision-making must be improved as well. This means closer cooperation between agents in charge of collecting information and analysts responsible for processing of information with decision makers. The design and development of systems with built-in data could also be effective in the war against terrorism. And finally, decision makers are often political appointees who have different views, personal interests, and preferences, but cooperation between these key players is necessary to improve the quality of the intelligence community.

Tuđman:

I would like to comment on two things. The first concerns the reaction of the American government. We can understand the reaction by the use of two criteria. There is still a need to make a distinction between defense and security. Defense is something that is primarily the obligation of the country itself. Each country does everything possible to defend itself, but security is a question of partnership and cooperation. So there are two different levels, and how to balance and combine those two approaches is dependent on the skills of the politicians. The second thing is, I believe that terrorist groups do need intelligence and counterintelligence. If we agree that terrorist activities have changed and are now oriented toward strategic targets, then they need intelligence, need to know how to recognize the target, and approach and destroy it. So it is reasonable to expect they will develop certain types of intelligence. For example, a possible target for a large number of dissatisfied people could be international or national data banks (governmental, military, financial, scientific, cultural, etc.). What then? There would not necessarily be physical destruction and killing of people, but data banks and such would be destroyed. It's also reasonable to expect that terrorist groups will develop counterintelligence, because certain security measures must be undertaken now by a number of countries; for example, controlling the Internet. And we learned that even the September 11 terrorists were using the Internet. That means protection of communications, but also counterintelligence protection.

Boyadjiev:

Before giving the floor to our colleague, Markus Wolf, I would like to make a short comment. I agree with Miro. What I meant was that thus far terrorists have obtained much of the information needed to achieve their purposes "for free". In the future, we're going to face more and more terrorist intelligence and counterintelligence. If they are really Enemy Number One now, everybody will be trying to get agents into their circles. So they will develop more counterintelligence. With limitations on the dissemination of information, they will need more intelligence. I'll mention just one of the hypotheses advanced in the newspapers. It was claimed that for September 11, the terrorists obtained information from a Japanese construction company about where and how to hit the twin towers in New York to cause the greatest damage and the collapse of the structures.

Tuđman:

There was a movie on the bombing of the twin towers made in the 1990s. They said only an airplane of that size and type could damage the towers.

Boyadjiev:

So once again they didn't need intelligence to get answers they needed for their plan.

Wolf:

Only one short comment on communications. The flawlessness of the acts of September 11 showed that there had to be a lot of communication. I don't know what type; I only know what has been published. But it is a fact that the enormous surveillance possibilities of the United States, including the NSA, did not prevent these events. I was thinking about it and remembered the rules of conspiracy we were taught during the struggle of every revolutionary organization. But those rules are archaic now. In a conspirative organization, every man knows only what he needs to know, and knows not more than two other persons involved. Of course we talked about the use of modern methods of communication by terrorists, and they certainly use them; but in the organization of Bin Laden and another similar organizations, the old rules of conspiracy play a major role, and if Bin Laden or someone like him was devising a plan from his cave in Afghanistan or somewhere else, he would not use mobile phones or other gadgets. He would be aware of the abilities of the NSA and similar agencies. Perhaps he would send a courier on horseback. I think to prevent these terror attacks, human intelligence is needed most of all. You can only protect yourself and discover the plans if you have an agent inside this conspiracy.

Kerr:

I think you're right. It goes back to this question of separation of intelligence, foreign intelligence from domestic intelligence. NSA cannot collect communications against US citizens in the United States. It is a foreign intelligence collection organization, so it has serious limitations. I think it is unlikely that the United States is going to be able to control information. The information is out there in so much detail and volume that there is no way to limit it. The only point I'll make to Professor Ćosić is that technology to assist the analysts in interpreting information is valuable. In the September 11 attacks the terrorists were quite effective in denying us information and staying below our threshold.

Boyadjiev:

You are saying that you can't limit information. But the world organized to find means to limit pedophile information on the Internet. Why not to find a way to limit information about how to construct, let's say, binary weapons. I know a website on the Internet where one can find a terrorist handbook much better than the Afghan "Encyclopedia" on terrorism. You can find a lot of "recipes" for biological weapons, chemical weapons, buying and selling weapons, and so on. That's not limitation of the freedom of information. That is limitation of the abilities of terrorist groups in the world to find recipes on the Internet to enable them to kill Americans or Europeans or somebody else.

Ćosić:

Yes, there is clearly a lot of information out there. The problem is very simple. We didn't recognize the information. We have to have techniques capable of extracting knowledge from this information, because if you have billions of pieces of information, there is no result without proper processing. It can only cause confusion. But analytical experts will be able to extract the information and prepare suggestions for the decision makers.

Lange:

We must not be under the illusion that we can eradicate all this sort of information from the Internet because then you have to burn your books, and prohibit people from studying certain things, and where does it all end? On the intelligence-counterintelligence end, I would be interested in your opinion on whether the September 11 was a group operating autonomously. Was it guided by another organization, is there another movement behind it? If there is a State involved, then we would use one type of intelligence-counterintelligence, and for a professional group, we would use another. We also can't rule out the commercial aspect. Commercial terrorism might develop further. But was it just a group on its own looking for an organization, which got together and did the action? I don't believe that, quite frankly. I would be very much interested in your opinion because what sort of intelligence- counterintelligence we will have in the future depends on it.

Kerr:

There are grievances against the US. In the case of September 11 , it may have been a grievance against the developed world and globalization, and the United States is the foremost representative of that group. So it is a logical target if you have that set of grievances. It seems to me that it grew from the period following the Afghan war with people who were trained in Afghanistan primarily to fight against the Russians following the invasion in 1979, people who came to the assistance of the Afghans and made connections which continued when they returned to their home countires. But I think it goes back to Markus's point that these are small groups operating semi- independently, but with connections to the center. They committed an independent action, but were part of a greater plan. When you dissect it, it isn't that sophisticated a plan, it didn't involve that many people, it didn't cost that much money, but it required a single objective and coordination of a lot of different people. When you look at the actual things that had to be done and the number of people involved, if there were more than 150 people involved, I would be surprised. If there were more than a couple of million dollars involved, I would be surprised.

Tuđman:

There was an analysis in the New York Times, according to which the schooling and training of those pilots cost no more than 200-300,000 dollars.

Kerr:

No, but you need other money; you have to rent places, you have to rent cars, you have to live, you have to pay people to help you. And there's also infrastructure. It is not millions and millions of dollars.

Lange:

I'm just trying to figure out how the recruitment was done. How did the group constitute itself? How was the coordination organized?
And the guys from Hamburg. There's one thing that still raises some questions. What about this strange visit by Atta to Prague and their alleged meeting? Maybe it was nothing.

Kerr:

I haven't had direct experience in this event, but I have considerable experience in figuring out who was involved in the bombing of the Pan Am aircraft. I followed the analysis of how we tracked that problem and it's a very complex set of connections. Not unlike the connections in the Bin Laden group. When we first started, our first reaction was that we were led down a path initially to the wrong group of people. It wasn't that they were innocent people, because they were also planning attacks against aircraft, it's just that they didn't plan the attack against this aircraft. So as we followed these people, we eventually came to a dead end. We then got on the track of the Libyans, primarily thanks to an agent. But a connection between those cells is not unlikely. These are people who knew each other or who had family connections or political connections. It resembled a network that you would draw from friends and acquaintances around the world. I think the Bin Laden network is very much like that.

Smith:

A great many contacts and connections were made in Afghanistan during and after the war. These people had known each other, and had assembled to fight the infidel, in this case the Russians, and after that war some of them stayed there. The war gave them a chance to establish connections, people from the Islamic Jihad, Egyptian terrorist groups, and so on. Terrorist groups and Islamic terrorist groups came and got to know each other, and then we were surprised to discover that the Islamic Jihad had branches in about 30 countries around the world. We discovered this in the mid 1990s. It was all the result of the friendships, acquaintances, and connections they made as a result of the Afghanistan fighting. This is the result. Bin Laden went there, raised money, got interested in fighting, and then turned very anti-American during the Gulf War when we moved troops into Saudi Arabia. His first aim was to overthrow his own government because the Saudi government had permitted US troops to be stationed on sacred Saudi soil. It's relatively easy for Bin Laden and other terrorist leaders to recruit among the Muslims who had fought in Afghanistan, and that's what they did. The result was that a large terrorist network was established. It would simplify things if it develops that Iraq was involved in the attack on the World Trade Center, but I'm not sure it is. The meeting that the terrorist Atta had in Prague with an Iraqi intelligence officer doesn't necessarily mean that Iraq was involved in the attack. Atta might have been trying to get some support from Iraq; or maybe he was an Iraqi agent. It is conceivable that the Iraqis would like to know what Bin Laden was doing. My own guess is that there was no state sponsor.

Lange:

Then you would say you can explain the workings of this group just by analyzing the group, and that you don't need to find any missing link, be it a state or commercial group, which recruited people who did not know what they were really being recruited for.

Smith:

We don't know much about it. We know enough that we can be confident it is what we are saying it is. It's a group of people that is very anti-Western, anti-Christian, [anti-infidel] and their hatred was transferred from the Russian side to the American. That's why they attacked.

Dedijer:

I want to say one thing. The Americans made a survey in Israel as to how many Israelis support an independent Palestine. It was 60%. 19% voted for war against Palestine. Now I suggest that an American firm go to the Palestinians and ask how many of them would give their lives to ensure Palestine's existence. I'll think you'll find 10,000 among the millions of Palestinians who would be willing. That is how these 19 - 20% were recruited. They are willing to give their lives. I think it is important to change that mentality.

Ferš:

I never heard that Bin Laden took responsibility for anything that happened on September 11 or before.

Kerr:

I don't think he has.

Smith:

He came very close, I think, a couple of weeks ago.

Ferš:

He never said it was his organization, or that he was responsible. He spoke only generally. We are against, we fight against… and so on.

Kerr:

That's unique; no one took credit for the Pan Am bombing, either. Yet generally people understood what the reason for it was, even if nobody claimed credit for it.

Ferš:

Yes, but what is this new phenomenon? Before we had terrorist organizations who said "OK we are responsible for this and we are fighting for this and that." Here we don't know what the target is or the object of the attack.

Kerr:

Do you think there is any doubt, though, in the minds of the Arab and Islamic world about the source? Do you think there is any doubt as to what the object was, regardless of who did it? It seems to me that goes without saying. We may want evidence, but it seems to me the general population knows why it was done and believes they know who did it.

Ferš:

Yes. But, for instance before when a terrorist group hijacked a plane or something, they wanted to have some leader released from prison or something like that. Or else announced what they were fighting for. But now they just act without announcing anything or raising any issues.

Kerr:

But doesn't that go back again to what we were talking about at the beginning?

Ferš:

I think it is important to have clear intelligence information about how and what they are planning.

Tuđman:

It is not always clear who is behind certain activities. I am not talking about terrorist activities in the States because I don't know anything about that. This afternoon I will give some examples of terrorist activities in my country and who was accused publicly of them. They were terrorist operations organized in support of Serbian information warfare against the Croatian government. And it took time to collect clear evidence against the terrorists and people who instigated the information warfare. That is why obtaining intelligence about terrorists and their objectives is very important.

Lange:

I would like to link up here and ask the American colleagues: Is there really hard evidence that the embassy bombings were executed by Al-Qaeda? Why not keep an eye on other organizations? I could think of two dozen organizations who would like to have done the September 11 action, could have done it, and maybe have done it. Why Al-Qaeda?

Smith:

We were able to identify some of the operatives and we know that they are Al-Qaeda.

Lange:

But you know there are overlapping loyalties. The same person can serve in 3 - 4 different organizations.

Kerr:

I think you're asking an important question. First of all, I don't know enough about the details of the investigations to be specific about it, but you do have to distinguish between intelligence and the knowledge needed to actually prosecute in a court of law. There is a distinction between those two kinds of knowledge. But I think everyone is reasonably confident that it was involved. Could you prove that in a court of law? Actually, there was a formal case presented by the Attorney General in the case of the Embassy, so at least from that perspective they believe they had a case that would stand up in a court of law.

Lange:

You are more of an expert than I. We have to be skeptical of so-called intelligence. I'll just mention one case, the so-called chemical weapons factory in Sudan, the attempt to make it look like more than it was. There are many such cases, as you well know. But there was no direct need for Bin Laden to be involved from Afghanistan in the operation. As you said, it was not that complicated or expensive.

Kerr:

I would be very cautious about saying what you just said. There are many cases. Even the pharmaceutical plan had an evidentiary base, however flimsy. There was information that people made judgments on that led the policy makers to conclude there was a connection. How good that was is debatable, but you act on information that is not firm for a variety of reasons, some of them very good.



 

Section II

Old means for new tasks:
Humint and Covert Operations.
Merging police intelligence and
national intelligence

Smith:

Old means for new tasks. I would like to talk a little bit about HUMINT. It was unfortunate that we didn't have the kind of intelligence that would have enabled us to forestall the attack on the World Trade Center, but we didn't. The immediate task for all the intelligence services is to do their best to build their capability to penetrate terrorist organizations. First, start by identifying the terrorist organizations and second, identify persons, or a person either in or close to that terrorist organization so that they, or he, can get information on it. The only way you can protect yourself against terrorist organizations is having information. It's very hard to get because the people in terrorist organizations, as you know, are not very nice people, and are very hard to deal with. They would shun contact with, or kill, most people sitting around this table. Certainly the Bin Laden group wouldn't have anything to do with any of us, so you have to find intermediaries to do it for you. Something, for example, like the Pakistan Intelligence Service. You need lots of help from the liaison. They have to work very closely together. Intelligence services have done a remarkably good job with sharing intelligence on the World Trade Center attack. This is unusual, but it's going to become more and more routine, because without a global intelligence network these kinds of attacks will not be stopped. Unless you have world coverage, world services working together, you won't be able to deny the terrorists a place to operate, a safe haven. They need safe havens. They function only with great difficulty without a safe haven, it makes it much more difficult for them to operate. If we have active and effective intelligence and internal security services worldwide, the problem will start to go away. It will never go away entirely, but its threat will be greatly diminished. I was talking with General Wolf this morning about these problems, because he is one of the 20th century geniuses on human intelligence. I asked him if he would give his views about how to improve HUMINT on terrorist organizations and then I would like to ask Drago Ferš and our moderator the same question. You have all been chiefs of service and you have all had experience in doing this kind of thing. I think the number one issue facing intelligence services now is how to get better at recruiting HUMINT sources. A HUMINT service is the most effective weapon against terrorism.. Could you, General Wolf, comment on how you would go about improving human intelligence on terrorist targets?

Wolf:

You know I have been out of the service for 15 years. Of course, I have no right to speak about the reasons for the failure of the services to protect this important part of the United States. You said the most important thing, and I repeat: without information from inside the conspiracy, it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to prevent a repetition of those terrible events. I can say again what I said this morning. The services need a strategy, and if I were to share my personal experiences from Germany about the struggle between East and West, I would say we concentrated our efforts on specific aims. It was not easy to protect my strategy. I think one of the main problems is to define the objects against which the services have to work; to concentrate efforts on gaining human sources.
Certainly now, after analyzing the events of September 11, it is possible to stop Bin Laden and his organization, but what about the others? What about Hamas, Jihad and others in the Muslim world? They are not alone, and they can certainly count on - if Stevan is right - the poorest and least free people as a constant reservoir of terrorism. Americans of course know better than I what happened in Latin America. It is not my business to propose the objects against which you should concentrate the most effort. Of course what happens inside a nation is different, and the activities of organizations such as ETA or IRA are mainly a national problem. National services have to think about that and concentrate their efforts on it; nevertheless, it's necessary to follow the international connections between different terrorist organizations and those specific national organizations as well. We talked about that in the morning, and the next problem would be rules of communication. Todor talked about the finances, and that's a central question. I'm sure based on the analyses there will be a determination about what finances are needed to surveill the various organizations, and locate human-intelligence possibilities. Terrorist activities can only be prevented if services focus on their raison d'etre. Maybe a re-allocation of personal and material funds and radical new commitments should be considered. I assume the U.S. services will use the immense financial support given by the President of the United States to create some balance between the the amount of funding for technology and for HUMINT. One lesson to be learned from September 11 is that the scale, methods, and professionalism of those terrible attacks call for a redefining of priorities. Above all, in my opinion, it is necessary to increase the use of human intelligence.

Ćosić:

The title of this session is "old means for new tasks." I would like to talk more about new means. New means for old tasks for new challenges might be a good definition of this session. In that sense, the question is: What are the new means? I will cite a report published a couple of weeks ago by the Pentagon. The Pentagon issued a rush request for ideas and technologies for fighting terrorism, exotic new surveillance technologies that could be used against distant enemies as well as at American airports, shopping malls, etc. The Pentagon bypassed its own bureaucracy, requesting that proposals be submitted by December 27 so that products and projects could be in place in 12 to 18 months. This is a great opportunity for people in the high-tech business. They requested items such as computer systems for tracking those who purchase bomb-making materials, portable polygraph machines for questioning airline passengers, print software for automatically recognizing people speaking Middle East languages, and digital systems to more quickly recognize threats. So it is clear that part of the future budgeting is shifting from heavy jet fighters to the struggle against this type of warfare. Sophisticated tools for identifying people who have handled weapons of mass destruction, use of digital fingerprints by law enforcement, and faster identification of fingerprints. This means all potential technologies can improve the tracking of the people and the movements of terrorist groups. I fully agree that human intelligence should be most important, but the tools and technologies human intelligence has at its disposal are also very important. Additional funds can improve our potential. This is one aspect, the impact of technology. The other aspect is understanding society, what's going on in society today? A lot of research is being done on behavior modeling using techniques such as agent base modeling, which focus on social influences and cultural dynamics. This research helps us to better predict the behavior of terrorists in the future; in the past we were unable to do this. The theory of homogenous culture has definitely disappeared since it showed we were not, in fact, moving toward a common system of values, a common culture. My favorite topic, though, is related to the transition in our society. The transition to democracy creates potential threats. Why? Many states have been unable to manage the transition to democracy and a market economy successfully in a globalized world, where values have been imposed on us by the most successful economic power. Many states will fail in the process of globalization, so we have to be aware that with globalization we also have fragmentation. We should oppose the imposition of values upon states without the agreement of the states participating in the globalization process; otherwise, great frustration and insecurity will result . In short, we need more creativity and imagination to predict what was earlier unpredictable. Especially in a high-tech war. High-tech war means war without a single dead soldier on one side and all the casualties on the other side. This can lead to a decision, for example, to activate biological and nuclear weapons.

Tuđman:

I also wanted to talk about new means for old tasks, but from an historical perspective. I want to point out that it's not only Americans who have problems with terrorism and terrorist activities; so do other countries. I would like to give some examples of Serbian terrorist activities in Croatia in the 1990s, data which are now more or less declassified and open, but not that well-known by the public. I think they illustrate the legal and ethical dimension of terrorism.
At the end of the 1980s, and especially after 1985 when it was clear that the communist system and the future of Yugoslavia was danger of disintegrating, Belgrade developed a parallel intelligence system under the control of communist hard-liners. Due to a lack of trust between Yugoslav and republic services, the parallel system was organized from Belgrade, and in Croatia located and run from the headquarters of the Central Committee of the Croatian Communist Party in Zagreb. Slavko Malobabić, who was formal counselor and/or Chief of staff of several presidents of the Croatian Communist Party between 1985-1990, was running at the same time a parallel intelligence center under the cover and sponsorship of the Communist Party. The service was formally organized as an analytical group working in the Central Committee. But it had official sources in Yugoslav military and Croatian civilian intelligence services. The analytical group had access to the intelligence products of existing services, and all citizens' dossiers from the Ministry of Internal Affairs. The group was preocupied with collecting all intelligence and personal data, and planning special operations and information warfare against "internal enemies". They had a budget, documentation, access to the documentation of other services, and a network of journalists to disseminate their "analytical products". That was the situation up until May, 1990, when the first democratic elections were held in Croatia. At that moment, the group and documentation were moved to the Military Counterintelligence Headquarters (KOS) in Zagreb. The same people continued planning operations now under the sponsorship of the Military Counterintelligence Service of the Yugoslav Army. The group organized number of terrorist activities in Croatia, and I will relate a few of them.
During the short war in Slovenia they planned and mined the power-transmission lines as revenge for the siege of the military barracks in Slovenia. On August 19, 1991, a bomb was planted in the Jewish municipality building in Zagreb at 4.15am. Ten minutes later, another bomb exploded in the Jewish graveyard. The man arrested and found responsible was Serbian and an agent of the Military Counterintelligence Service, working in the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Zagreb. After he planted those two bombs, he moved to Bosnia and was one of the organizers of Republic Srpska.
Another example is the rocket attack on the presidential residence on October 7, 1991. The presidential residence was hit with rockets during a meeting between Croatian President Franjo Tuđman, Stipe Mesic, President of Yugoslavia at that time, and Ante Markovic, President of the Federal Government. Nobody was killed inside the residence, but the residence was destroyed. Today, the names of the perpetrators are known. The pilot of the MIG was Ivan Dopuđa, and the navigator Eedomir Knežević, the head of counterintelligence in the Air Force. All the necessary intelligence data were obtained from Slavko Malobabić, who had been operating the parallel intelligence center from 1985-1990.
The Zagreb group was forced to leave Croatia in the summer of 1990. because some of their members were arrested and prosecuted. The group was relocated to Belgrade, and as a part of the military counterintelligence service continued the same activities, but under a new name. The code name for the new operation was "Opera". The objectives of "Opera" were to organize information warfare and covert operations, and to arm paramilitary units engaged in Serbian aggression on Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Just to give you some examples of their activities: the military counterintelligence service (KOS) gave approval for all the official statements of the JNA (Yugoslav Army). KOS also controlled press conferences and all press releases. "Opera" produced and prepared video information to combat reports of JNA aggression, first on Vukovar, and then in Dubrovnik, where they provided their interpretation of aggression on Dubrovnik. The point is that the first information about aggression on Croatia and the atrocities by the JNA were prepared by KOS - the JNA counter-intelligence service. "Opera" was responsible for fabrication of information from the Military Medical Academy in Belgrade as well. The objective was to produce disinformation and then blame others for the atrocities. The information, misinformation, and disinformation products were distributed to the international press center in Belgrade. KOS and their agents were very successful. Even today, some of their disinformation are still cited in the former Yugoslavia and European media.
For example, Jane's Intelligence published in 1994 an article about the Croatian Intelligence Service. We know today that the author of the article was close to an individual in the person Serbian service. And several years ago there was an affair in the British media connecting that same person with a member of British Parliament. But the article in 1994 offered a negative picture of the Croatian service and myself. The main thesis of the article was that the Croatian service is under the control of the German service. At that time we didn't even have a relationship with the German service. But the main message and context was the "Nazi" background of both the services.
"Opera" was organized to spin Serbian aggression, and the atrocities and terrorist activities committed. "Opera" thus promoted messages and disinformation such as: Herzegovinians are fighting for Croatia while people from Zagreb are skiing in Austria; the leaders of HDZ are former agents of the Yugoslav Military Counterintelligence Service (KOS), etc.
Operations run by (KOS) can be rightfully described as terrorist activities. The objective of the "Proboj" (Break through) operation was to plan acts of aggression and arm the Serbian population in Croatia and Bosnia (before the conflict had evenstarted). Just to illustrate, all the key actors in the Serbian aggression on Croatia were KOS agents: Milan Martić, Goran Hadžić, and Milan Babić.
A Yugoslav MIG caused a UN helicopter to crash in January 1992, near Podrute, and several EU monitors were killed. General Bajić gave the command for the operation and the MIG took off from the Bihać airport. The operation was coordinated by the Yugoslav Military Counterintelligence service.

Kerr:

I don't disagree at all with what has been said about the need for human intelligence and the nature of that problem. But it seems to me there are some other things worth addressing. Some of the restrictions, certainly in the United States, on activities that the government imposed on itself are going to change. For instance, intervention in financial transactions. There has been a reluctance in the United States to take action electronically by attacking financial accounts because of the concern about the disruption of financial institutions and intervention in global financial systems. But I think we're going to find that people are a little inclined with the appropriate authority to go after people's financial accounts electronically. There also is a real likelihood that in the United States, especially against non-US citizens, there is going to be more intrusive surveillance, whether it's electronic, telephonic or other. I think the ground rules for our intelligence involvement in activities it tended to stay away from in the past or be very careful about are going to change. That has some serious long term implications for legal and civil rights. On the other hand, it seems to me that those very capabilities also give opportunities to people for a different kind of terrorism. There will be opportunities for disruption of normal business activity, changing or bringing down stock markets, or affecting normal business transactions. The ability to create havoc in the financial system is very real.

Dedijer:

Like what Soros did in Tyron.

Kerr:

There are all kinds of things. Opportunities for disinformation are very great. Stevan mentions in his paper that there was a panic in the United States in part because people did not understand the reason for the attacks. They did not think the US was at war.

Wolf:

Speaking about targets and priorities, we only mentioned in passing the question of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons and the possibility of uncontrolled production. I think after the events of September 11, this should be a high priority. We must prevent access to them by terrorists, and maintain very close, strict control over them. The first step is to analyze where and who, and to establish priorities about how to manage this problem.

Lacoster:

This subject is for me a very important one; as you know, I have not been in charge of secret affairs in my country since 1985, more than sixteen years. However, I still have a great interest in intelligence and security matters. I am teaching in a French university and writing articles and books on these subjects. Last June, I published a book with one of my friends, Secret Services and Geopolitics. Among other issues, we argue that in the present world, previous distinctions between foreign intelligence and domestic intelligence are much less relevant. The September 11th attacks in the US are an example of the new complexity of intelligence problems after the end of the Cold War and the opening of most state borders. For several years I have been studying that specific aspect, and I believe that just because we have new tasks, we do not have to discard old methods. We cannot get rid of the traditional "HUMINT" because of the remarkable performances of the new SIGINT and other scientific systems now at the disposal of intelligence services. We have to keep in mind basic stratetic principles, and classical knowledge about war and law and order enforcement. Military and police affairs have many points in common; both are fighting enemies or adversaries, and in both cases, you have to reveal and understand the intentions, capabilities, behavior, and logistical problems of your "enemy". It has always been the job of intelligence services to address those questions. When police officers are fighting against gangsters, it takes another form, but it is not much different than when the military fights its enemy on the battlefield.
In my country we have dealt for many years with various forms of terrorism. I remember during the Second World War, when I was young and the victorious German army was ruling my country, we were working to build and operate "resistance" networks to help our Anglo-Saxon allies in their fight for victory. But the German authorities considered members of those networks "terrorists"; for the allies they were "freedom fighters". You could say that when the Communist party ordered a German officer killed in the Paris Metro in 1941, it was an act of provocation intended to "radicalize" the situation. Nowadays, we see similar situations between Tsahal, the Israeli Army, and the Palestinian "intifada" fighters.
Many years later in the 1970s, when I was in charge of the Prime Minister's office, we had to deal with "Basque" terrorism. At that time, a conservative government was in power in France, and if our President had openly assisted the Spanish authorities in their struggle against the Spanish Basque terrorists who were "political refugees" in our country, he would have been fiercely attacked by the "French left" parties. However, a few years later there was a political change in France and Spain, making it easier for President Mitterand to cooperate with the Spanish police than it had been for President Giscard d'Estaing to work with Franco's police and justice system.
International cooperation against terrorism is politically difficult, even bilaterally. It is not only a question of good relations between intelligence and police systems; it is also necessary for judges to work hand in hand, which raises the problem of compatibility between two justice systems and procedures. When you arrest a terrorist in one country, that country's laws and procedures apply. The professional terrorists take advantage of the differences in procedures, and know how to profit from their " civil rights" in order to escape prosecution .
I had another experience with the Italian "Red Brigades" in the early 1980's. The Italian government and judges were very concerned about the political violence that had led to so many murders and terrorist actions in the 1970s. They knew some of the Red Brigades leaders were living in France as "political refugees". But President Mitterand and his socialist friends were convinced that those people were being punished for their political opinions, not for having committed crimes, and opposed all extradition requests from Italy. Today we have similar problems between Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and the US government, in regard to financial aspects of Islamic terrorism, money laundering, and so on.
We also had the case of terrorism in North Ireland, where the British have been fighting for many years against the IRA. In Germany, they had the " Red Army Faction". Through this, the European governments learned to improve cooperation between national services. You have heard of the "Schengeningen agreements." It demonstrates how difficult it is to achieve collaboration between different countries. It is possible to cooperate efficiently when different entities work within the same " task force" on a common task for a limited period of time. It is easier than creating permanent organizations or modifying laws through national Parliaments.

Dedijer:

The Middle East policy of the United States is changing. Suddenly President Bush says Palestinian has to be independent, and then Colin Powell and Shimon Peres, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, say the same thing. Shimon Peres, who should be in The Hague himself for what he did to the refugees in 1978. I have a copy of a speech Powell delivered on November 21 in Kentucky, in which he says that the vision of the United States is to have a conference in the Middle East out of which will come two States, Palestinian and Israeli, both secure and with firm borders, both working to improve the lives of their people. If this policy is followed by the United States, I think we can solve the problem of Arab terrorism. If Bush follows the policy of giving the Palestinians independence, the main threat of terrorism will disappear. We have a lot of political experience; let's think how this problem can be solved. We have to treat Israel like any other country, like Macedonia, Croatia, or Serbia, no special privileges. That's the only way to solve the problem. Then Arab terrorism is going to disappear, because you'll disarm people. They'll say: "I've got country, Palestine. I can live in it, I can go to school in it, and I'm not terrorized by anybody. That is why I think the American policy of declaring war on Bin Laden is ridiculous. How many Afghans have been killed so far? OK, 4500 people were lost in New York and the Pentagon. How many Afghanshave died so far? It's a pure eye for an eye policy being followe by the United States, but at the same time the idea of independence for Palestine is being promoted to rout this kind of terrorism.

Kerr:

The US has tried to solve this problem. A great deal of energy, time, emotion, money, investment, and even a good deal of Presidential prestige has been put into the solution. But I would also argue that solving the Israeli-Palestinian problem will not solve all the problems the Arab world has with the US. Bin Laden's hatred of the US and a good deal of the Arab hostility toward the US is not necessarily because of the Palestinian problem. It's also the forward presence of the United States in the Persian Gulf and elsewhere in the Middle East which is seen as an intrusive foreign presence in an area that they presume is their area of dominance. You quote Susan Sontag, who I think is an idiot. Her argument about the September 11 event is like telling the wife of someone whose husband has been shot in a robbery that if she understood the motives of the killer, she would have more sympathy for the killers. I find that a very illogical and fallacious argument.

Dedijer:

But look, this is the first time you have been at war in your own country. But we've experienced all kinds of wars.

Smith:

But we are going to work to prevent it from ever happening again. We don't sit there and say "I wonder why they did that?" There are some people, a very small segment of the population, who said "I wonder why they did that, let's study and see why they did that'. That is a foolish reaction. It's crazy. When someone hits you, you hit him back. You don't say "I wonder why they did that." Maybe after you beat them, you say it. But in this case, the first duty of the president is to defend his country, and when you're attacked, you attack back, you defend, you find the person that did it, and you get them. That is what we are doing. This is a very rational reaction from Bush.

Ferš:

You said in the beginning that the only way to protect ourselves is to have the information. I agree. What will happen after September 11 is a new challenge, as you mentioned earlier. There are different ways of gathering information. During my career I didn't have these different means at my disposal, because when I started out in Slovenia, we didn't have the technical equipment; we started from scratch and had only human resources. I am sure my American colleagues could push a button and have half of Afghanistan and the world on the screen. If I want to see this, I have to get on the Internet. But ten years ago we didn't have the Internet, we didn't have anything, we had to find human resources to engage. How much energy needs to be expended for people to understand why the former Yugoslavia collapsed? Who in 1989-1990 and later understood what former Yugoslavia's real problems were? A very small group of people. Maybe they didn't have information or inaccurate information. I am sure people abroad had all the information they needed, but they didn't understand the situation because they didn't understand the issues. How could you understand the events that Miro mentioned earlier in Zagreb and in Croatia. It was very hard. Also my experience fighting the Yugoslav Army in 1991 showed that we couldn't finish our job using only technical equipment; we needed human resources. But without without technical support, we also wouldn't have been able to do anything. A combination of both is the optimal way to perform a HUMINT covert operation. Each case is unique, in each area we have a different situation, and each case must be prepared using several different actions and reactions. We heard earlier that the Mujahedeen and the Afghans are poor people and have nothing but their lives to give. But those who organized these criminal acts are still alive and will be alive in the future. They will not give their lives for a concrete action. That is a different issue.

Smith:

Their belief, their grievance, is that Islam, which was once the great civilization, has fallen behind the upstart, infidel, and corrupt West. They are angry and terribly resentful.

Ferš:

I think the real question is: How much power are we prepared to give to the ones fighting against the terrorists? I agree that if you have a big problem, you ask the Government to allow new measures to be introduced. But are there any governments anywhere prepared to open the door and say: "OK, services, you now have a new measure, so you can do what you want because in Europe and Washington, three buildings collapsed and a lot of people were killed.

Smith:

I think even now if we press the Europeans and ask them for help, engage and work with them, I think their governments will help. I think they're all concerned. European governments realize that this can happen anywhere, because the more developed the world, the better the targets, the easier they are to hit. The big targets are in the United States, Europe, and certain countries in Asia, and if we have decent liaison relationships with services, those services will be responsive to our arguments that they have to do something. We can't do it all ourselves, and that is why it is so important to have close, continuous, and harmonious liaison relations.

Lange:

I would like to comment on Mr. Dedijer's remarks. I agree with him, but only 50%. We must clearly differentiate between two types of terrorists. There are the guys walking out of the camps with bags of dynamite, and underprivileged and frustrated people linking themselves up with the Israeli or American policy in the Middle East, but the people who enacted the September 11 attack are a different breed. If you look at their biographies, you will find they have above average qualifications, are very introverted and rational, not very socially integrated, but not unpleasant people. They're not the lunatic fringe type, and this makes human intelligence a very different task, because it's difficult to infiltrate the groups, develop a pattern, and search for these people. This is a task that cannot be solved by individual psychology. What we need is to approach it as an organizational problem and develop search patterns for certain types of organizations, money flow, and so on; forget about psychology, because that takes us nowhere. There's a big difference between suicide bombers wearing dynamite belts and the WTC pilots.

Dedijer:

You said you agree with me 50%. I've been in this field for 30 years, and since the 1970s, I've been saying that spying is dying out. I also published a lot of articles saying that spying was not necessary, and that it's just a way to get information. Now that is supported by others. You can find everything on the Internet. But human intelligence is extremely important. We have here the man who made better use of it than anybody else. Used it to penetrate the entire German government. Lord Johnson is a very respected writer on intelligence and he says now that human intelligence and espionage were Cold War techniques which are no longer useful. I think that's wrong. Because if the FBI, CIA, and 13 agencies were clever enough to have had one Bin Laden, they would have shot down those planes before they struck. That means you didn't have the knowledge to find these people. Technical intelligence can't supplant human intelligence. Most terrorist groups are working conspiratively, using the skill of keeping their mouths shut and knowing how to keep secrets, not giving out information, and so forth. What will human intelligence and espionage consist of in the future, what's terrorism and what is not terrorism?

Wolf:

Let me say just one word. I am absolutely sure that there is no group or organization that cannot be infiltrated. To use an example, though this was long ago: the Chancellor's office in Germany, where it was almost impossible to recruit agents. But it was possible to infiltrate that office by using a long-term strategy, by choosing the right people. It is hard for me to understand why the services did not have sources in the Al-Qaeda organization.

Kerr:

I wouldn't assume they had no sources. They had no sources on this operation but they had a number of sources. It is true on this operation they did not have good enough sources.

Boyadjiev:

I want to ask something. First of all, do we agree that terrorism is not a war between Islam and Christianity? I think this is one of the aims of Al-Qaeda, to show it as confrontation between religions. Are we going to agree that it's not a war between civilizations? If we agree - because terrorism doesn't have anything to do with civilization - then I agree with General Wolf. If it's not a religious or civilizational conflict, then we have a common denominator with people from other religions. We have common ground to fight a common evil, terrorism. Because it's working against Islam, it's working against Christianity, it's working against humanity and civilization.
I can give the example of the Branch Davidian sect in the States - a Christian sect that committed mass suicide which can also be characterized as mass murder. Let's agree on two major things. It's not a religious war, it's not Islam against Christianity, and it's not one civilization against another. I think if we accept that position, then one of the main aims for the intelligence people and HUMINT operatives is to locate sources in the Islamic world ready to cooperate and help fight terrorism. They will then more easily understand that terrorists are radicals working against Islam and Islam interests.

Smith:

But this is about Christianity; it's in the minds of the people who attacked the World Trade Center. Bin Laden. It's a fight against Christianity. We're the infidels, but we should not present it that way. We should not say yes, it is. Bush has been good at this. He has been trying to isolate the extremists in the Islamic world by being careful to say nothing critical about Islam and to describe the terrorists as persons who have gone against the teachings of Islam. He has tried to make it clear to the Islamic world that it is not Christianity versus Islam. He realizes that it is important to frame the issue as the terrorists being against both Islam and Christianity. We want to isolate the terrorists and we do that by not saying it is Christianity against Islam.

Kerr:

There is fundamental tension between the Islamic and western worlds. Islam has not changed since the 8th century, while the Christian world has gone through several reformations and changes necessary to adapt to a changing world. To say that there is no difference and that there is no conflict there is to ignore a very important issue. I don't agree with Huntington that conflict is inevitable. But I think there is a very important schism that needs to be healed.

Boyadjiev:

But this is not the basis for a general confrontation. This is a difference that ought to be overcome but it should not become a basis for confrontation. Otherwise, we all lose.

Smith:

I think we're talking about two different things. Our tactics should be to not say that there is a clash between the West and the East, between Christianity and Islam, because that would be very counterproductive. We have singled out the terrorists and distinguished them from the vast majority in the Muslin world who are moderate and non-violent.

Lučić:

I want to again refer to terms, definitions, and names. Are you aware of any terrorist organization having the word Christianity in its name? There are Western terrorist organisations such as ETA, IRA, etc., but they are fighting for their national interests, not for Christianity! So I would use the term western world, not Christianity. On the other hand, the majority of terrorist organisations from the Islamic world include Islam in the organization name, and in their agendas they clearly state that they are fighting for Islam and Allah. This form of terrorism is becoming stronger and growing in numbers, and we can define it as "green socialism".

Kerr:

There are some extreme right-wing people in the United States that are activists willing to kill to support their views. Some of these are Christians. I don't think you can find a movement whose primary objective is Christian domination, though.

Lacoster:

May I make a practical comment? The leaders of radical Islamic terrorism must find and train recruits. The best way is to take young, uneducated people, because they are easy to influence and inculcate with radical ideas. We know what is happening in the "Koran schools" and the "military" camps in Afghanistan and Yemen, where future "Mujahedeens" are being trained. In the Sierra-Leone civil war, teenagers have been the most ferocious and merciless fighters.
However, in the September 11 attacks we saw something new: the arrival of a new generation of terrorists. They are very clever, well-educated people who have been living for years in western countries - Germany, France, Great Britain, Spain, and even in the USA, as "normal" citizens. But they are also fanatics. It is a strange psychological condition, similar to that in the so-called "religious" sects, when some apparently sane people fall under the influence of a " guru", oblivious to the fact that he is a common thief and so on. You might recall the collective suicides in Guyana, and in Switzerland a few years ago.
A third point is that the terrorist groups have a remarkable ability to impose strong discipline and strict rules of secrecy on their members. Professional police and Secret Services in charge of collecting intelligence find it very difficult, and sometimes impossible, to penetrate terrorist organizations.
The task of "counterintelligence" is hard because the terrorist networks apply perfectly all the basic principles. I remember a specific experience during the civil war in Lebanon, when we were confronted with clandestine and terrorist organizations, bombings of our barracks, assassination of our diplomats, and even terrorism on French territory. My Service, DGSE, succeeding in introducing an agent into one of the groups which was preparing an action in France. I was then confronted with the problem of confidentiality vis a vis my colleagues in French domestic counterintelligence; if they caught the man they would deprive us of an important asset. Was it better to tell them or to keep the secret ? When you are dealing with terrorist networks, it can often be more dangerous than conventional espionage.
A fourth point is what I call "the mafia syndrome". I believe the most dangerous criminal organzations are those organized like the traditional mafias. The mafia system is much more subtle than "ordinary crime" gangs. Their leaders are more clever; they have friends and agents in different parts of society, and they strictly observe the "omerta", the rule of silence. Law enforcement forces seldom infiltrate agents into those organizations; the knowledge we have of the members and structure was not gained by infiltration operations but from the revelations of former "mafiosi" who had been threatened by their former compatriots (in Italian, the "pentiti"). When former members of terrorist groups feel remorse for their crimes and agree to help us eradicate terrorism, we will have similar successes here.

Dedijer:

I read a book recently called Fight against God. It is a book about three kinds of extremists: Christian, Jewish and Muslim. The author appeared a week ago on CNN. There are extremists in every religion. In my article you will find a wonderful scene from the National Cathedral. All the presidents were there, Bush and son, everybody. Then a beautiful man dressed in red with a little red cap appeared, got up, and said only this: "The Gospel of Matthew says to be modest. Be humble in spirit." It was a beautiful lecture to Bush and the others; take it easy, don't go crazy. There's no need to pass a resolution here. We are all against extremists of any religion.

Boyadjiev:

Continuing with what you said, I was working in the States during the Teheran story, the kidnapping of Americans at the Embassy. In regard to extremism, I recall a popular country western song from that time that became very famous in the States. I liked it, too, but it was a good example of extremism. I do not recall the name of the singer but he was singing to the ayatollahs: "Let our people go or we'll turn your country into a parking lot". It was very nationalistic with a lot of extremism. I wouldn't be surprised if some small group appears claiming to be the new prophets working for Christianity and planning terrorist acts against Islam. I do not think this can be excluded.

Međimorec:

I would like to raise an important question. In Croatia, terrorism has been examined from political, economical, sociological, cultural, and religious perspectives. But the arguments are simplistic and the conclusions reached are always predictable. "Black and white" explanations are given. The roots are not explored; faults, misconceptions and erroneous political characterizations (towards countries and societies inclined toward terrorism) are not analyzed. An intellectual doesn't dare risk public attack to praise Huntington's thesis about the clash of civilizations. It is almost considered offensive to study the violent streams of Islamic fundamentalism, or current Islamic ideas and movements. An intellectual has to follow the governing school of thought and repeat ideas until they become "mantras". The world is based on multicultural, multireligious, multiracial dogmas, on intercultural understanding and tolerance. But there are religious, cultural, and historical schisms and tensions. Such differences are obvious to people living within these schisms; for instance, the nations along the boundary (the old Roman lines in former Yugoslavia) which divides the West from the East. This is a fact that cannot be ignored and must be taken into account in any serious political analysis. It is not possible to understand the problems in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, or Macedonia, and act accordingly if you don't take into account differences between the two major religions - Islam and Christianity. Two philosophies, two cultures, two civilizations. If you do not understand the depth of the roots of those two different civilizations, you will not be able to understand the real nature of terrorism. The Admiral links different kinds of terrorism to different politics. I would like you to focus on what I call the "asymmetrical flow of history". We have been observing the process of national liberation and homogenization in Albania, Kosovo, and Macedonia. Ten years ago, Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina went through the same turbulence. These countries are undergoing a historical process which occurred 150 years ago in the rest of Europe. The historical framework was not the same for the nations in the West and those in southeastern Europe. The historical discrepancies are obvious. The means for achieving a national state, freedom, and liberation from an oppressing hegemony vary in every country. Is the Albanian national movement in Kosovo terrorist or is it waging a legitimate struggle for independence? Is this "terrorism" the same as Al Qaeda's? Terrorism in one country is not the same or identical in another. There are many variations and forms. One should be able to differentiate between the various situations, roots, and causes of terrorism. Today, Bin Laden's and Al Qaeda's terrorism is the most dangerous and obvious, and should be neutralized by all posisble means. Future conflicts in Somalia, Philippines, Iraq, and Yemen depend on the outcome of this struggle. Different means and methods must be devised. In the fight against terrorism, different tools should be used according to individual characteristics. Reformation was mentioned. A few days ago an article appeared in The Times dealing with the period of reformation. The author is a professor at York University, and his thesis is that we should return to the pre-reformation period in which differences between religions were normal and acceptable. His idea is that we should accept differences between Islam and Christianity in their purest form, which would enable us to better understand modern tensions between the two major civilizations. A short remark on HUMINT. All these technological "miracles" are helpful, but only intelligence officers on the ground can obtain vital information and accurately assess the dangers. In my experience, cooperation, exchange of data, and joint operations are the best means to counter terrorism.

Boyadjiev:

If we do not agree that all forms of terrorism - left, right, religious, national, minority, majority terrorism are crimes against humanity, we are going to have double standards. With double standards we cannot fight any form of terrorism, because there will always be someone supporting some type of terrorism. Terrorism is a crime against humanity and that ought to be accepted totally, without any differentiation between the different kinds of terrorism. It's a crime.

Lacoster:

I agree. It is different because in addition to terrorist actions against the USA, it also creates a dangerous threat for moderate Muslim and Arab states. There is the possiblity of destabilization of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, the Gulf Emirates and so on. It is more a new kind of revolution than a "crusade" of the Muslim against the Christian world. We have been confronted for decades with the political revolutions of Marxism and Fascism. Now we have another challenge, another revolution involving two billion people. We have to watch this problem very carefully.

Lacoster:

I agree it is different, because it is not just a terrorist act against the USA. It is even more dangerous for many Muslim, Arab states. It could destabilize Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, and so on. It is not a crusade of the Muslim world against the Christian world, but a new kind of revolution. We know about the political revolutions of Marxism, but this is another type of revolution because it affects more than one or two billion people. So we have to consider this issue very carefully.

Tuđman:

To return to what Boyadjiev said: terrorism is a crime. Any kind of violence is unacceptable. Any threat against a life is a crime. What I would like to ask is: do we accept distinctions or not? Do we acknowledge nations' differences in politics, cultural identities, society, cultures and interests in the world? How do we deal with differences we do not like and that are unacceptable to us because they are conflict with our interests? That's the problem. Obviously, history is replete with the struggles of nations to survive and achieve a better position in the world. Throughout history, there are periods of war and periods of peace, when nations or states are able to achieve better positions without military conflict or loss of life. Theoretically, it is easy to agree on what constitutes terrorism. How to evaluate the different types of terrorism is not so easy. Some governments or individuals classify certain activities as terrorist, while others disagree. Are there universal or international legal criteria or standards on terrorist activity? Perhaps on a theoretical and philosophical level, but I doubt something like that can formulated among countries with different political, cultural, economic, and developmental disparities.

Gömbös:

I'd like to quote The Economist that terrorism is not only a religious but a complex, overall problem. "The truth is, America is despised mainly for its success; for the appealing and, critics would say, corrupting alternative it presents to a traditional Islamic way of life; and for the humiliation which many Muslims feel when they consider the comparative failure, in material terms, of their once-mighty civilization. It helps Arab governments, no doubt, to blame that failure on outsiders."

Wolf:

You asked about Albanian terrorism. I read that during the time the KLA was preparing for terror attacks, hundreds of fighters of the "holy war", recruited from different Islamic countries, came into Albania to plan terrorist activities with the locals. I don't intend now to discuss the war in Kosovo, the KLA, and terror activities, but just wanted to say how difficult it is to define terrorists and terrorist organizations.

Ćosić:

There is no doubt that we need a revolution in intelligence affairs, but a revolution which will define and design a new strategy to prevent terrorism and provide a clear vision of potential terrorist threats! That's why I have stressed technology as a new tool. I agree that the most valuable resource is human intuition, expertise, and knowledge. But human intelligence failed on September 11th.

Dedijer:

The theme here is merging police intelligence and national intelligence. Since 1945, every country has worked on building up an intelligence community consisting of different agencies. The English were the pioneers. They established the Central Intelligence Board in 1936, which is in Downing Street 11. And that National Intelligence Board deals with all intelligence issues, all threats to the British Empire. Then other countries after the Second World War started developing intelligence communities for intelligence: security, FBI, police and so forth. Now the world is changing so rapidly that you can't comprehend it, you can't measure it; still we have to monitor all these organizations and determine how they function. Recently I quoted Robert Gates, former head of CIA, and four Presidents who said that the CIA is the most closed organization possible, and that they don't tolerate the anyone's opinion but their own. You've had intelligence failures; intelligence failures occur everywhere, but my question concerns the role of bureaucracy. What is meant by bureaucracy? I think that we have to consider the issue of bureaucratization of intelligence communities. How did the NY operation escape the 13 United States intelligence organizations? Another favorite case of mine is Aldrich Ames. The New York Times wrote that he was totally incompetent but was nonetheless promoted. He lived like a king and nobody saw it or had the courage to speak out. What happened with Ames applies to all intelligence organizations. I'm not picking on the United States. So the question is how to motivate people? During the Cold War everybody was a hero in intelligence, they were all 007s, and felt proud about it. In "Foreign Affairs" the CIA still advertises, inviting young people to apply to the CIA. But they are all bureaucratic organizations; you don't measure the output. You don't know what you get for the money you put in. How are you going to evaluate what you get from the money you invest in all this different groups and how can you coordinate them? I don't know how bureaucratic Croatian intelligence is, but I suspect it is at a high level.
Intelligence is effectiveness, how you use your brain, what ideas you produce, how you create ideas, and so forth. I would like to raise the question of how to fight bureaucracy in the intelligence communities. How can we make them more efficient, so that they produce measurable results and do not miss problems or fail to predict events? So I am going conclude with this, the theme of bureaucracy, bureaucratization of intelligence organizations. I think this should be on the agenda of every community, regardless of specific problems of intelligence or acts of terrorism act in New York.
I just want to add this. IBM has estimated that business intelligence investment is 70 billion dollars, and I think it's bigger now than the national intelligence community of all countries put together. I think it is going to grow, and business intelligence investment is going to be much larger than for national security.

Tuđman:

I believe in the future the intelligence community will grow more than the military. The intelligence community will be more important, in order to protect a country or society from the threat of terrorism. Someone mentioned that terrorist groups of less than 100 or 200 people can present a serious threat, and that there is no need to activate brigades or divisions against such groups. On the other hand, because of the growth of business intelligence, the role of national intelligence services is now only one segment of intelligence activities. That means the role of business intelligence will grow, and maybe we can't address the issue of bureaucratization of systems because the system will soon be organized on a completely different basis. But to answer your question: if our intelligence community were bureaucratized, how would that occur? My answer is very simple. We were too small and too busy to be bureaucratized. The size of our services is not a secret. We have fewer officers than journalists in a typical daily or weekly paper. That means that we were not big enough to have become a bureaucratic organization. In Croatia, we developed an intelligence community from four services; three were established during the last ten years. They did not exist previously because Croatia was not an independent and sovereign state, so everything started from scratch. We established an intelligence community, but it was not easy to establish cooperation among various services in the beginning. After a couple years, the other services realized that cooperation was advantageous for them. Croatia was at war and none of the services wanted to take the risk or responsibility for possible failure, and that was the main rationale for cooperation among the services. On the other hand, we were in a position to cooperate closely with police and law enforcement services; that is, customs, financial police, and criminal police. We achieved a lot of success here.

Kerr:

I think you have to look at why that bureaucracy exists. Fundamentally, it's a accretion of various functional organizations that were brought together primarily during the Cold War. There was a compelling need to understand Soviet strategic forces. Out of that grew this very complex organization, very bureaucratic, but capable of meeting the Soviet strategic military threat. In some ways, it is not well adjusted to the problems of today. At the same time you can't scrap it all, you can't say "well, we'll start out again", for a variety of reasons. Some of it is very valuable. The problem is how do you take what you have and focus on a new set of problems with new eyes? It is very difficult for organizations to recreate themselves. Concerning the likelihood of significant changes in the intelligence community, I think it will become more effective in dealing with current problems, and this doesn't mean that because its bureaucratic it isn't effective.

Lacoster:

I would like to raise another point: the connection between the decision-making and information systems. It is a major problem. Every country has its own governmental traditions. There are many common features between the American and the British intelligence communities, but they are not the same. The differences are based on history and national cultures. In British society, we see several centuries of merchant, naval, and imperial tradition. The British had to learn how to deal with the complexities of managing a worldwide empire, to take responsibility and, at the same time, handle internal political issues (i.e., in India, Malaysia, and Africa), and foreign policy in and outside Europe. Their culture on intelligence issues is very different from the French. Their military traditions are in many aspects not comparable with ours, and their political institutions are also very different.

Kerr:

To be frank, though, you have to be very careful, because the British live off US information. They don't have to do all of the hard stuff. They can step in at the top and look at the big issues.

Lacoster:

Yes, we know that everything doesn't originate in England.

Kerr:

And if you want to look at failures, you might look at the history of British failure to anticipate change. I wouldn't give the British too much credit for brilliance in predicting the future. The years 1930, 1940, 1941, the Far East, and the Middle East are replete with examples of poor intelligence. Everybody has a problem predicting the future. The US is not unique in its failure at times to predict the future.

Lacoster:

But unlike us they are not confronted with frequent elections, political change, and so forth. There is more continuity than in other democracies, which is good.

Dedijer:

I want to raise an issue that's extremely important, and that is democracy and intelligence. Bill Colby and I developed a list of the main traits of the current intelligence revolution. One was insight and control; a country has to know what intelligence is doing. Miro, you said about two years ago that you were going to expose what's going on in Croatian intelligence, and you wrote a long article about it. But there is no publicity in Croatia about what they are doing. All you hear about is that the President is fighting about whose is going to be the chief of intelligence, but you don't see anything about what in fact intelligence is. Why do we need it? Why do the businessmen need it? Why does the whole country need it, and why should books be published about it? I think Europe is much more conservative in publishing material about intelligence issues. England publishes quite a lot. I think that in the smaller countries like Croatia, they think everything should be kept secret, away from the public, but in a democracy you must publish and talk about it.

Tuđman:

Here everything is going in the opposite direction. This government is so democratic that they concluded it's better to eradicate the services; unfortunately, they are dealing with the Americans, and the Americans want to preserve cooperation. Because of that, the services still exist. I'm joking, but the real problem here is… Unfortunately my opinion about the current situation here is that we are not capable of discussing the role of intelligence and because of that, they don't want to even know intelligence can be used. You see this in the media, the President of the Republic said the same thing, and so did the government. So when you don't even know how or want to do that, control of the services is even less important. From that point of view, the situation is bad. But the issue of multilateral and bilateral cooperation is very important.

Dedijer:

I was at a meeting two weeks ago attended by six heads of Croatian firms: Pliva, Podravka, and so on, and I asked them: "Tell me, where do you get your information in the office? When you come to the office, what is the first thing you read? Who do you talk to? Do you have a system for doing that? Do your people supply you with information?" It was very interesting. How does an individual businessman acquire the necessary knowledge to make a profit? That is what intelligence is, information.

Kerr:

There is a fundamental difference between information and intelligence. I think that we often confuse the two. Information is all kinds of stuff; intelligence is putting it together in a relevant way to support national policy. I've had considerable experience with business intelligence, and I'm not impressed. I think they're amateurs at best, and are focused on a specific problem- their product relative to other people's products. If you can't figure that out, you are in deep trouble in business. It differs so dramatically from a problem of a country, let alone a country like the United States, that sees itself as having interests everywhere. Everything involves its business, so I don't think they're comparable kind of issues.

Dedijer:

A big cooperation has to know what's going on in the world.

Smith:

Not the same way the government does.

Dedijer:

They have to know exactly what's going on in the world. That's global intelligence. A big cooperation has to have intelligence about the competitors and customers. What do the customers want? Why did they decide to buy my product and not other products? They've got to have intelligence about their colleagues. Croatia is about 400 on the list of world economies, with 20 billion dollars. If you think of Croatia as a corporation, what do I have to know about the world? How am I going to use that information? How am I going to get this information cheaply and act upon it? That applies to everything, so I don't think there is a big difference between them; some are more effective than others.

Ćosić:

I would like to make some comments on the business intelligence conference, which took place here a few weeks ago. I was very disappointed that it was just a discussion about business intelligence, without clear definition, goals, and objectives. First of all, there were no relevant discussions. There were no intelligent questions asked regarding business intelligence. Each company somehow has to define its strategy. Everyone was saying strategy, strategy, but no one never explained how to devise a strategy. There was no discussion regarding business intelligence. There were no points of intersection with well-organized national security. The conference lacked clear vision and that's why there were no results. This year the number of participants compared with last year was two times less.

Smith:

How did we get into business intelligence from police intelligence and national intelligence? This is a very important question: merging police intelligence and national intelligence. It has to be done, but it is difficult. You are dealing with two organizations that probably don't like each other very much, have different types of sources and handle them differently, and finally have not had much experience exchanging intelligence with each other. We in the States have that problem with the FBI. I would like to think that we are both mature and experienced, but we still have the problem, and the FBI has that problem with the police forces.

Kerr:

One is fundamentally a police force without any analytic capability, whose purpose is to convict people and throw them in jail, and the other is an organization that takes information and makes it relevant to national security issues.

Ferš:

In this session we heard that the intelligence and police systems in the United States have not radically changed, if I've understood well. It's possible to change something with new people and new ideas, but this is not the new vision of intelligence. Do you think the system you have now in your country is capable of using new methods to confront the new challenges that emerged after September 11?

Kerr:

I don't think there's any question that it's not adequate. They have a long way to go to begin to even speak to each other on common terms. There are certainly things that can and will be done to improve that, there is going to be an improvement in the connections between those organizations and an improvement in the flow of information across the organization. But I think there are some very fundamental problems that are going to be hard to overcome. One is the American population's concern with a national police force and more intrusive law enforcement. Those are going to be major obstacles. Then, as Stevan mentioned, if you think there's bureaucracy in the intelligence community, you have not seen anything yet until you look at the bureaucracy in the domestic organization. There are 20 or 30 of them that probably need to talk to each other, each one in a different part of the department in the government, and there are major problems of connectivity. While things can be done to improve things, it is a major undertaking.

Ferš:

I am not talking about inside the United States, but about cooperation with other services in the world; for instance, cooperation on one side and partnership on the other side. There need to be changes in all the intelligence communities in the world.

Tuđman:

If I can raise a similar question. You just mentioned that intelligence is for collecting information for national security, and the police force task is to put people in jail, but when we are discussing a need for international cooperation, what happens when national security intelligence is collected in one country, appears in the police files in another, and is used as evidence to jail someone to limit or prohibit his activities? That means a source giving information is free to travel in this country but in another country is limited in his activities, which was certainly not the intention. We need to resolve this issue, because it also creates a major problem between police and intelligence services.

Lacoster:

It is not just a professional problem for police and intelligence services, or a question of internal and external security. This is about the real democratization of society, which includes judicial issues and the role of lawyers. You probably know that we captured the well- known international terrorist, Carlos. He is responsible for many actions in my country in which several people lost their lives. His trial took place a few years ago, and he is now in jail in Paris. Two months ago, I was summoned by a French judge because he had received a complaint from Carlos charging me, as well as several other French officials, with plotting to murder him. Isn't this an excessive use of "civil rights" ? The "mafiosis" do the same thing. The mafia bosses are experts in taking advantage of the subtleties of law and judicial procedures to escape conviction. Many terrorists do this as well. In the case of Islamic terrorism, we are confronted with another problem existing in modern societies: the "gray areas". Gray areas are areas which are lawless or outside the control of the law; for example, certain suburbs of major cities, and parts of poor, under-developed countries. The police is not allowed to enter. Other laws are in effect, the laws of the most violent, the laws of the drug dealers.

Wolf:

There is one issue I suppose we have to discuss. I'm not sure whether we can establish an international convention on legal rules for intelligence services, but perhaps we should do our best to prepare something like it.
I think in cases of terrorist actions prepared and executed within one country, the legal aspects should be in harmony with the national law in terms of criminal prosecution and punishment. The fight against internationally directed and externally planned operations must comply with international law. The use of international law in cases of terrorist acts is, I think, an issue that comes up often.
There are many other questions, and I will ask some of them just to be provocative. Do services have the right to kill or torture if they are able lay their hands on terrorists or suspected terrorists? There has been a lot of discussion about this subject recently. I get a lot of interview requests on this specific question: what should services be permitted to do under circumstances such as occurred last year?

Tuđman:

What kind of legal consequences will the government face if it shoots down civilian airplanes, for example?

Wolf:

We spoke a lot yesterday about the necessity for more human intelligence inside terror organizations, but if you have such an agent, what is he allowed to do? In the past there were examples of agents in organizations like the Red Army Faction. In one case, one of these agents participated in the organization of an explosion in a prison, and there are many other such examples. This is a very sensitive and difficult question.

Dedijer:

I would like to start. The issue of the legal basis for or constraints on intelligence is much broader than these two terrorist incidents. What happens when intelligence changes occur is that it has to be decided which earlier methods and activities can be legalized. I know, for example, that civilian airlines have been used for intelligence purposes. I think there should be an international convention forbidding this. The first one caught would have his head chopped off. I think we should be examining all intelligence activity today, including business intelligence and other forms from the legal point of view. What can be done internationally to advance cooperation and obtain information from all kinds of sources, but within legal boundaries? This will never be a gentlemen's game. That question I will leave to the lawyers. We agree that there are international laws forbidding certain acts, but I think we should look beyond this horrible act in New York; the discussion should be broader.

Kerr:

My first reaction is to argue that the United States would be reluctant to embark upon a set of rules that would limit the actions of the US intelligence community. I think that would begin a very slippery slope, a process which, at least from my perspective, would not only be dangerous but also difficult to enforce. The issue of torture is very interesting. I think torture dehumanizes the torturer. The implications of torture for those who are doing the torturing are significant. If I were responsible for the intelligence organizations, I would not allow it or condone its use by countries supporting us. I think you have to be very careful about the words used and their precise meaning. I think political assassination aimed at an individual is unacceptable. This action could set in motion a train of events and retaliation that you cannot control. Just from a US perspective, I think we're more vulnerable than the people we go after. On the other hand, I would differentiate political assassination from a preemptive attempt to stop a terrorist operation. I would have no compunction whatsoever about that. A preemption for self-protection is quite different than an attack on an individual.

Smith:

I would like to address the question of whether agents should be allowed to participate in terrorism. I start from the fact that a penetration agent in a terrorist organization is a very valuable agent, and is in the position to save lives and prevent great physical damage. It is very difficult to recruit a penetration of a terrorist organization. Because of their potential for saving lives and the difficultly in acquiring a penetration it is of great importance to preserve and extend their operational life. This often comes down to the issue of whether the agent should be allowed to participate in the terrorist act he has warned about, and in which his organization has directed him to participate. If he refuses to participate, he may be punished by the leadership of the terrorist organization [this might mean his death or that he is marginalized in the organization]. Neither outcome is good for the service running the agent because he will have lost his access and hence be unable to warn of future terrorist operations planned by his group. Therefore, it would seem necessary to occasionally permit an agent to participate in a terrorist act so that his ability to continue to report is preserved. The information he provides regarding the planned terrorist operation should allow the authorities to thwart the operation in a way that prevents loss of life but protects the source.

Kerr:

I'm not sure I agree with Doug. I wouldn't like to be the person who had to stand up before oversight committees and the press and explain why he allowed an agent to knowingly commit a major terrorist attack. Now it is a matter of scale. Can you belong to a terrorist organization? Can you participate at a certain level? But if they were actually involved in the killing of other people, innocent people, I find that indefensible, so I think Doug and I will probably have a little disagreement.

Dedijer:

I'll just point out that the two gentlemen who just spoke were speaking as representatives of the US intelligence community, but there are other entitities in the United States. For example, Book 5 of the Church Committee on Intelligence in 1977 speaks about assassination, and there are all kinds of arguments opposing this idea. This is the most interesting discussion we've had these past two days, on this legal question. Can the international community, not the United States but the international community starting with Europe, introduce an initiative to examine the legality of intelligence procedures and methods, and what should be legalized?

Boyadjiev:

While doing my homework, I tried to summarize the existing treaties, European and UN, which consider terrorism a crime. Maybe it would be helpful to cite some of the laws so we can see what is missing. I started on the basis that terrorism as a crime is connected to other crimes such as arms trafficking, drug dealing, racketeering, trafficking of human beings, smuggling, and money laundering. All those crimes exist, and all or part of them are committed during the preparation of a terrorist act. The legal framework of the European Union thus far consists of the Convention on the suppression of terrorism; Convention on mutual assistance in criminal matters; Convention on extradition; Convention of laundering, search, seizure and confiscation of the proceeds from crime; and Convention on the international validity of criminal judgments. The United Nations instrumentation consists of Convention for the suppression of financing of terrorism; Convention against the taking of hostages; Convention for the suppression of unlawful seizure of aircraft; Convention for the suppression of terrorist bombing; Measures to eliminate international terrorism. There are a lot of documents that provide a legal basis for fighting terrorism. I am referring to Europe and the UN, not to national laws. And two more things. I'll try to summarize the parts about sharing international experience on terrorist crime and criminal procedures against terrorism. Here we find procedures related to the collection of evidence and proofs of the existence of a terrorist organization; governmental decisions about terrorist activities; investigative tools; intelligence analysis; punishment standards; confiscation of property; specialized branches for investigation and justice. The final thing to summarize is how I envision a model law on antiterrorism, and what is needed to harmonize the relevant legislation. First of all we have to describe all forms of terrorism as criminal acts with penalties that must be enforced. We must have investigative tools for detection of explosives, chemicals, nuclear materials and so on; definition of modus operandi - kidnapping, bombing, threats and other forms of terrorism or methods used in a terrorist operation; the uncovering of logistical support - operational, financial and personnel; and regulations concerning people under immunity and international protection. How can we ensure that the diplomatic pouches of a certain country do not contain materials which will be used to assist a terrorist operation? And then there is introduction of evidence; examination of witnesses and victim protection; and international cooperation and exchange of information. I think we are still lacking some legal instruments, but we are on the right path to creating an acceptable legal basis for fighting terrorism.

Tuđman:

International and national security policy requires an understanding and definition of terrorism which reflect the principles and philosophy of international and national security policy. Everything is related. We have already agreed there are many definitions of terror and terrorism. Basically, it always involves illegal use of force or violence against people. It's easy to reach agreement that destruction, killing, and violence are unacceptable, and that human life holds the highest value. But how do we classify political activities and the legal or illegal use of force applied not to destroy lives, but to eradicate identity, values, and interests? For example: one of the basic legal principles of international political behavior is the use of pressure. We are continually faced with the one government using pressure against another government or country. There are so many different ways to apply pressure. From an ethical and philosophical point of view, how can we condone force used against national interests and values, forcing people to change their values? Let's agree, for example, that Talibans do not behave appropriately towards women. We can agree that that behavior is not acceptable, but from a moral point of view there is always a set of values which belongs to a certain cultural, political, and social identity. From a philosophical point of view, is it acceptable to destroy the cultural, political, or social identity of a nation or social entity? From that point of view, I believe we are talking nowadays about terrorism and terrorist operations only in a narrow sense. There are so many ways to use and abuse force. So I believe that it's possible to make a distinction between hard terror and soft terror. Hard terror accompanied by killing, violence, and destruction is not easy to accept, but it is easier to recognize and define. Soft terror is oriented to subverting national interests and values by using pressure, political force, or other means to change the identity of a nation or political group against its will. Intelligence activities, covert operations, disinformation, information warfare, etc., play an important role in soft terror. So I think we need to recognize and define all kind of terrorism in order to develop the basic principles on which international and national security policy can be organized.

Dedijer:

In 1980 I was invited to attend a conference in Turin by the Democracia pro Italija. They were holding lectures for members of Parliament in Italy, and I discovered most of the members of Democracija pro Italija were policemen. They invited me and a lot of interesting people from all over the world. People who were not free and who wanted to be free. Your father, Miro, was in prison because he wanted to make Croatia independent from Communism. At that conference I started talking to an Italian and told him that the Palestinians are a people without a country. They can't live in their own country. He asked me if I would like to meet the Palestinians. I said yes. So I flew to Tunis and met up with one of the leaders of the Palestinians at that time. He said that Arafat wanted to meet me. They wanted to know in what way I could help. I suggested we call a conference of people who are not free in the world. I made a list: the Irish, the Kurds, and a lot of others. I met Abu Jihad, one of those who organized the Munich attack on the Israelis. I contacted a member of the United States Social Sciences Council, who is a Mexican, and he said "what a wonderful idea, let's get together." So imagine if we had instead of us sitting here representatives of all the people who do not feel free. How would they view terrorism? Terrorism is a poor man's war, which is a definition that is very hard to swallow in the United States. I have always been pro-Irish and I am glad that they have discussed revolution. Let's look at things in broader terms than this incident in the United States. I think that if the Arabs had succeeded in organizing this conference, your father would have come to the conference, Miro; most Croatians would have come. I read this morning in the Herald Tribune that the prince is advocating free elections in Saudi Arabia.

Lacoster:

I believe there is a legal framework. For example, in most countries peace and wartime laws are different. The legal powers of various institutions in the United States are different. But I have said for many years that the traditional distinction between wartime and peacetime is becoming less and less relevant. The Gulf War was legitimized because Saddam Hussein was foolish enough to attack his neighbor, Kuwait, enabling the US to obtain a positive vote in the United Nations Security Council. After September 11, they did not receive formal approval to launch military operations in Afghanistan in order to kill or capture Bin Laden. It is not "war-time.
Let us consider the history of Israel since 1948. When it was created, the founders behaved like violent terrorists (i.e., in the bombing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem). But since they were fighting to survive and not to be destroyed by the surrounding Arab countries which were threatening to wipe Israel off the map, their terrorism was "morally authorized" for self-protection and self-defense. Nowadays the situation is not the same. Tsahal is not in the same situation as before the "Six Day War" or the "Yom Kippur War". They are now engaged in a different kind of war, an asymetrical war waged against individual terrorists. Their huge military assets, tanks, highly sophisticated planes and attack helicopters, are being used against civilian objectives, to kill individuals, one man after another. Is this "war" , a confrontation between two armies fighting in true military tradition?
I remember how Israel's Prime Minister Golda Meir reacted after the terrorist action at the Olympic games in Munich. She ordered the Mossad to go throughout Europe to search and kill the terrorists. When Mossad agents made a mistake in Norway, killing an innocent citizen of Morocco, there was a scandal in the world press and the public was outraged. But she bravely assumed responsibility. Other Chiefs of State have not acted the same way in similar circumstances. Today, we need to endorse unilateral definitions for crimes and illegal actions within a new global framework, so that the United Nations can adopt international rules allowing governments and the international community to act against terrorism and international crime. However, the principle of self-defense would remain unchanged. It's in the United Nations Charter.



 

Section III

Legal, ethical and media aspects of
"Intelligence Wars".

Međimorec:

I would like to talk about the moral aspects of the intelligence profession. Admiral, I read your interview in today's paper. You stressed an important point - the morality of this profession. When I was called in 1992 to take one of the leading positions in our intelligence community, I was honored, but at the same time confused and reluctant to accept that responsibility. The late President asked me personally to join the service. My perception of this profession was biased by the negative examples and practices of Tito's former secret police. The secret services in communist Yugoslavia, civilian and military, controlled every aspect of our lives. Their methods were harsh, brutal, and terrifying,; there was even a rhyme that "OZNA sve dozna", "The secret police knows everything"! The former Yugoslavian secret police fought a bitter war against the so-called enemies of Socialist Yugoslavia; in fact, against people who left Yugoslavia, dissatisfied with the dictatorial nature of its regime. People were killed all over Western Europe; even liberal political activists who advocated democratization were persecuted. The majority of people, especially Croatian intellectuals, rejected any connection with such a compromised profession. A lot of prejudice existed. Even now, due to continuing media influence and bias, the majority of people in Croatia considers the intelligence profession to be dirty, immoral, and unacceptable. Terms like spies, dirty, illegal, indecent methods, and immorality are used to describe this profession. I talked to the late President about my dilemma, that I wasn't sure whether this profession was moral. Secret services participated in killings, kidnappings, and assassinations. I was not ready to perform such deeds. The late President rejected all my arguments, explaining that during World War Two, the top intellectuals in US and Britain were members of intelligence services. Even today, they are proud of their efforts in fighting Nazi Germany. Members of the intelligence profession in a democracy are responsible, he told me, for gathering and analyzing data. They are not members of a law-enforcement agency. And there is nothing immoral in collecting information, he said. I was finally persuaded by his arguments and agreed to enter the profession. From time to time, moral dilemmas have emerged. And I have learned that intelligence work is not only collecting information. Sometimes it is more than that - especially in time of war. What if I should, in the name of the State, be forced to perform an act which is against my conscience? What should I do? But I was never asked to do such a thing. The late President had told me the truth. In our service nobody was ever asked to perform an immoral, indecent, or criminal act. But this ethical dilemma will always be a fundamental one - the difference between morality and immorality; the thin red line which separates them. How do we deal with the under-cover agent who has infiltrated a terrorist organization such as Al Qaeda? Should he under certain special circumstances be permitted to act as a member of this terrorist organization? Should he be allowed to perpetrate an act against civilians or citizens of his own country? Which moral imperative is higher - toward the individual or the state? This is a perpetual dilemma and it has to be dealt with case by case.

Kerr:

I would like to go back to the issue the Admiral and Miro raised. It seems to me it would be unwise to try to define with precision the nature of terrorism and the equivalency of various kinds of terrorism. We cannot put on the same legal or moral equivalent the September 11 event and the killings conducted by both sides in the Palestinian/ Israeli conflict.

Smith:

The question of whether the asset, a penetration of a terrorist organization, should be permitted to commit a terrorist act is a very delicate but very important one. It is a difficult operational, political, and moral question. I want to be sure I do not leave the impression that I think the most important thing is to protect the agent; the most important thing is to prevent the attack, but a great effort should be made to protect the agent so that he can serve again. Stop the attack and preserve the agent's security - these two objectives must be met if possible, although obviously stopping the attack takes priority.

Wolf:

We can't separate the aspects of an intelligence war from the current war. Yesterday I had my problems with the term "war", but an intelligence war has now been declared against terrorism. I think it was good that Todor gave examples of existing conventions, international law, and of course we also have national laws in our countries, but the discussion has shown it is not easy to use all the rules of law. We can't allow the terrorists of September 11 to destroy the efforts we have made to establish some kind of international law. It seems to me a bit abstract that if a terrorist act is committed in one country, there exists a national law and it is possible to fight the terrorists and these activities on the basis of this national law. In the fight against international terrorism it's necessary to use existing rules; of course, they are not good enough, but they exist and I think it would be very dangerous to disregard them. I think the American government, the American president understood this when they tried to obtain a United Nations approval (but not during the Kosovo war). This is a very abstract statement, but I think it is the basis to use.

Lacoster:

I can raise another point. There are real differences between countries, even democratic countries. Look at the death sentence. Most democratic countries have abolished it. You can put a criminal in jail for life but not kill him. There are fierce debates between, for example, the US and several European countries on this issue. I agree with you; there are limits to theoretical discussions, even about the right of self-defense. In order to choose the best "ways and means" one has to consider the circumstances. Let's look again at the situation in Israel; wouldn't you say they are implementing the old Bible precept "eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth" ? We are horrified by this behavior because we know it is unleashing endless bloodshed and hatred.

Wolf:

There must be no license for killing in the services. Of course in a special situation - and Dick gave examples - it might happen, but then you have to use the right to self-defense. I agree with this. To give such an order would require a very special situation, and there must be a ruling from somebody who is empowered to give the order. This is a big problem. As to torture, we had advisers in Arab and African countries; in the GDR, and by orders of the Minister of Security of the GDR, there was a law prohibiting torture. Our advisers in Ethiopia and East Africa, however, observed some instances of torture and failed to respond. We did not want to train people for that kind of interrogation. There were recent reports in American publications about a joint co-operation between operatives of CIA and the Albanian Secret Service to arrest suspected Jihad members. They were brought to Egypt, and in Egypt they were tortured. They confessed their participation in terrorist activities; two of them were sentenced to death, and others to long- term imprisonment.
Should the use of torture be tolerated in the fight against terrorism? I think if we say there is no right to give an order to kill, then there is no right to give an order to torture, either, and we have to say this categorically. If, of course, the terrible attack on September 11 is used as an example, if terrorists surrounded by special forces resist arrest by force of arms, they can then be shot. But if captured, they should not be killed. This is the rule in civilized countries, and it is necessary to emphasize this.

Lacoster:

It is easier to deal with these delicate matters from a theoretical point of view than when you are engaged in action. I am old enough to remember some realities about war: in Europe, Indo-China, and Algeria, for example. Many times commanding officers had to subdue their own soldiers who had gone crazy after seeing friends horribly tortured by the enemy. There is a lot of discussion now in my country about torture in Algeria. It is not just an ethical problem; above all,it's a political debate. Nothing is said against the Algerian FLN terrorists who perpetrated horrible actions against innocent civilian victims for years. The French Army is the only target. Our governmenet was powerless to stop terrorism in the streets of Algiers, where bombings were a daily occurrence. They asked the military to do what the police was no longer able to do. Within a few days, they caught the main terrorist leaders and restored security. Of course there were some excesses during these tense times; we see a similar situation in Palestine between Tsahal and the Palestinians resisting colonization. There are no definitive solutions here. But I'd like to cite an old rule from the Catholic Church: if you have to make a choice based on your conscience, between two evils, then you consider which is the lesser of the two. If you can exert violent pressure upon a suspect in order to save hundreds of civilians, would you refuse to do so ? This is a human decision under real circumstances, and the theorizing of irresponsible intellectuals lends little to the discussion. Do you agree?

Tuđman:

We're mixing things up a little, because we were talking about the approach and response to terror and the role of intelligence. Intelligence services do not have law enforcement units so they are usually not performing law enforcement tasks. So if you are allowed to do something, it doesn't mean the intelligence service will be involved. The moral problem still exists, but I think it would be a bigger problem if intelligence services collect intelligence and somebody else executes the action. But if we are talking about the legal framework, I think there has to be a division. Very often we have to solve a problem quickly, so we have to find a way to create a legal structure to address such circumstances. As I said, what I don't like is force. We have to observe basic principles or a legal framework; otherwise we are in a very difficult situation. If we are talking about international terrorism, certain international principles and laws must exist and must be followed by every partner. Those who are contemplating committing a crime need to create a legal basis.

Kerr:

Todor presented a long list of UN prohibitions against terrorism. My question is, have these had any impact? Is there any reason to believe that a long list approved and passed by the United Nations has had any impact on the actions of members of the UN? I'm skeptical, but I don't know the answer to that question.

Lange:

Just out of curiosity: what is the legal basis for President Bush's statement that "we want this Bin Laden guy, I want to catch him or to kill him?" To the best of my knowledge, he has not been convicted by the courts, not even in absentia.

Kerr:

He's been indicted by the US Justice Department. In accordance with American law he will be brought to trial.

Lange:

Can he be killed as well?

Smith:

That's where the war part comes in.

Kerr:

That's not possible; he hasn't been convicted yet.

Lange:

So what is the legal position? They say that they can locate him and then direct a laser-guided bomb to his cave or tent and kill him. But what is the definition of this war? War in international law is something different. This is a different kind of war, one that hasn't been described yet by international law.

Kerr:

Your observation is right. I don't think the President's asserting that he's doing this under any particular legal framework or under any law; he is asserting that we will do it.

Smith:

Under the law of self-defense.

Wolf:

I would like to add one statement to Todor's list that I noted here before our discussion. Any order to kill violates the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948, which stipulates that every person charged with an offense is to be presumed innocent until proven guilty. He's proven guilty or innocent in a public trial in accordance with the law, and he should be given all guarantees necessary for his defense. In my opinion there is no denying that after September 11 there might be, as far as human and civil rights are concerned, a relapse into a situation which was thought to be a thing of the past. Now in the United States and Germany a lot of laws have been changed. It is understandable because of this situation and the terrible events of September 11, but I think it's necessary to understand that civil rights activists might become suspicious. That applies to the imposition of military jurisdiction for suspected foreigners in the USA, and for a considerable expansion of the powers of secret services and police powers by amendments to the law in the Federal Republic of Germany. This is the reason for my beginning statement; I think it would be dangerous to allow terrorists to have such an influence on democratic life and regulations. Measures against terrorist activities, yes, but in Germany we are looking now at the implementation of all-encompassing surveillance which will affect millions of people.

Kerr:

I don't think you'd want to confuse rhetoric with the legal position the Government would take. But if I can go back to something that you raised, I agree with you that we have to be very careful about changing rules we've established and developed over many years to protect our rights and our freedom. I think the Americans are particularly cautious of that. The other point though is that your own rules are used against you and become your vulnerabilities as well. Then the question is what right do you have to protect yourself when there is a direct use of your own freedoms to attack the very freedoms that you're trying to protect? That is an interesting problem.

Lacoster:

Along the same lines, I think it is the obligation of every government not only to punish but to prevent and deter. That is why the law must punish criminals and terrorists harshly to deter others. Of course the law must also protect civil rights, but one must be careful not to indulge in other excesses. There is an example in my country of socialist politicians, probably driven by generous, idealistic motivations, voting in new laws which provide suspects with the opportunity to escape justice with the aid of astute lawyers. A few weeks after the laws were implemented, there was a large rise in criminality. The young people living in the poor "gray" areas of some suburbs realized that they could break the law yet remain unpunished. We must stick to moral, democratic rules protecting the individuual, but at the same time devote attention to rights and obligations toward society. Take the situation where one state is threatened by another; it is morally defensible to maintain a strong military to deter aggression.

Dedijer:

I realize the deep shock of this event on the United States mass psychology. It is much deeper than I thought. I think time will cure that shock. I'm not going to take seriously much of what you have said because I think you're all under shock. What have I learned about war? If you read my memoirs about the war, you'll see that all the things my mother taught me - don't lie, don't kill, don't steal, don't destroy - have all been turned upside down by war. In war you kill, you destroy, you lie, whatever you can do. I think the danger of this whole idea of war against terorrism is that it gives us permission to do whatever we want. I've said for a long time that the United States is the most democratic and creative country in the world, but not the best country. I think Sweden, Scandinavia, many European countries are better countries socially, more comfortable to live in, better than the United States. I think we should look at what I mentioned earlier, that the people who are not free have no other weapon to use but terrorism. We've got to consider how to eliminate that.

Ćosić:

Ethical and moral aspects of this problem are very important, but how about a systematic approach to the problem? What about education and training, which are fundamental for future agents, analysts, and decision makers? Of course some people will have problems performing their missions under certain circumstances, so how can a compromise be made in view of legal or moral constraints? We need more education to deal with this issue. It is not only an individual but a general dilemma: how to be effective, how to fulfill the mission and at the same time respect legal and ethical constraints. We still have major problems seven years after the war. We have to build a common culture through appropriate curricula. What about the code of conduct, do we have code of conduct?

Kerr:

I think the answer is we do have a code of conduct; we do have a training program that talks about the ethics of intelligence. We talk about the very issues that we're talking about here. We talk about our own legal structure and the requirements of executive orders, the limitations, the oversight process, and the law in terms of congressional oversight. We spend a good deal of time talking to our young officers about this very aspect. I'm sorry I talk too much but I always have to respond to Stevan. I think he's mistaken in his judgment that this event of September 11 is going to be forgotten relatively quickly. I think the implications of this event are significant. While the war, the military conflict in Afghanistan, will go away in the not too distant future, it would be a serious mistake to assume that other things growing out of this attack of September 11 are going to disappear soon. I think the changes will be seen in our legal systems, our conduct overseas, and our attitude toward our allies and friends and enemies. I think it will be seen in our response to weapons of mass destruction and our responses to the Islamic world. I'm not saying that as a US spokesman but I think you are underestimating the wider implications of this. You said something the other day that I found very interesting, you said an intelligence officer's responsibility is strictly to predict the future. I would say, no, no, no, not predict the future. What you do is provide some warning and assess the implications of events. As an intelligence officer I cannot predict events in the Middle East, but I can assess the implications of various outcomes based on my knowledge of the area and of current events.

Lacoster:

The point about the code of conduct is interesting. As in other allied armies, we in the French Navy have also had precise "rules of conduct" and "rules of engagement". I remember how difficult it has been to explain that to our politicians, when most of them were ignorant of conditions required for the use of military force. They were reluctant to assume responsibility. When you asked them when you were allowed to use your weapon, under which circumstances, and in which way, they only gave a vague or irrelevant answer. We prepared precise lists of all eventual scenarios in order to facilitate a dialogue between the officer in charge of using military force, and the government leader in charge of making the political decision. I think we should do the same thing between the politicians and those in charge of intelligence.

Wolf:

But bear in mind that hundreds of soldiers, border guards of the former GDR, were brought to trial because they used their weapons, they followed an order.

Međimorec:

There is a lack of law and order, a lack of an ethical code, a "code of conduct". Legal and ethical regulations are always closely linked. Now we are back at the starting point. We must create a new set of laws in order to fight terrorism. If we create a new set of rules for post-September 11 engagement, we should know exactly what terrorism is. We will have rules on the activities of the law-enforcement agencies, intelligence services, and armed forces. But we can still make mistakes in distinctions between terrorism, liberation movements, and struggles for national freedom. There are nuances and differences we should be aware of. The whole world is in the process of re-evaluation; barriers are falling, technology is uniting the world in a thus far incomprensible manner. Philosophers, scientists, artists, and politicians are seeking new ways to explain the future. The theories of Huntington and Fukuyama are relevant here. We should not be satisfied with dogma; we must study all the new elements. We are aware that terrorism has many faces, in Europe, the Middle East, Somalia, Sudan, Afghanistan, Indonesia, and the Philippines. In different regions or countries, terrorists call themselves freedom fighters, liberators, fighters for national independence. We have to make a precise distinction - theoretical, political, cultural, and legal - between true freedom fighters and terrorists. Democracy will have a difficult and sophisticated battle to fight against terrorism in Afghanistan and most likely in Yemen, Somalia, North Korea, and Iraq. Preconditions for the growth of terrorism, disguised under the auspices of a national movement, have been created in Kosovo and Macedonia. If we fail to clearly define terrorism, we are neglecting the essence of the issue. Democracies are waging a prolonged and uncertain war, yet we can't identify the enemy at his core. Admiral Lacoste said in his interview that using the army against civilians is not only illegal - it is immoral. I fully agree with him. Future wars against terrorism in Afghanistan or some other part of the world will probably be a combination of intelligence (targeting) and special military operations (destroying the enemy). Intelligence services will look for them, and special forces using modern weaponry will neutralize the terrorists. And finally, we are entering a globalized world in which there is a push for intelligence and security matters to be transparent and open to society. Every day our societies become more transparent, so everyone will be forced to abide by the law and follow the code of conduct. The media and public will ask more and more questions, wanting to be informed about important matters such as security. They will want to know what we (intelligence and security people) are doing, and whether what we are doing is transparent, moral, legal and above all - efficient.

Wolf:

Let me use my position to support Stevan, who has repeated his position about the causes of terrorism on several occasions. Of course, it is primarily a question of policy, but the services can support by contributing information and analyses. Since September 11, the world public has felt frightened and been deeply affected by pictures of war, aircraft carriers, bombers, and so on. Politicians addressing the causes of terror have for the most part limited their statements to mere lip-service. Photos - of refugees approaching the Afghanistan- Pakistan border, for example - illustrate only a small part of the misery. In all years terrorist attacks in Israel were being shown, where were the photos of Palestinian refugee camps? Why is there no initiative or international plan to end the misery of the Palestinians, to do away with the camps? Why are there not measures executed and supported with the same intensity as the war declared by the President of the United States? The problem of the Palestinian refugees is certainly only one of the causes of terrorism, and a complicated and complex problem which cannot be solved overnight. It will take time,

Lange:

You rightfully pointed out that there are different types of tragedies valued in different ways. Just to make one point: I spoke to an African colleague recently and he asked me: "Why do those 4500 Americans appear to be more important than the 2.5 million that were killed in Central Africa over the last few years?" I couldn't give him an answer. I'm horrified by the events of September 11, but on the other hand, there are similar events occurring regularly which are less spectacular but equally horrifying. I have no answer and I am not passing judgment, but I just wanted to mention this.

Kerr:

That is a specious argument, I have to admit. I don't think there is comparability at all. That does not mean some individuals are more valuable than others. There are certain things, though, that a nation can and must act on and there are other things that it believes either are not its direct responsibility or are the responsibility of others. There is a difference between the responsibility of the United States for 4000 people that were killed in United States terrorist attacks and the responsibility of the United States for a conflict between the Hutus and the Tutsis in Africa. A nation has a fundamental responsibility to protect its own people. Again, I think the Palestinian argument is not valid. They have suffered greatly and they have been taken advantage of. They have been pushed out of their homeland. But at the same time one has to be a little careful about comparability again. Israel is a democracy and it does have elections. The United States should not have responsibility for responding to all the injustice in the world. I think we can argue that in another forum.

Lacoster:

I think there's a dangerous election practice in several democratic regimes; that is, "proportionality" is often not in operation. Deputies elected should reflect the opinions of the majority of citizens. This has always been Israel's rule, for example. As a result, religious extremists have had very little influence in the country's policies. By most criteria, Israel is a real democracy; however, the radical minorities have had, and still have today, a role that does not at all reflect national opinion. In addition to radical Arab Islamists, there are also extremist religious tyrants in Israel promoting excessive views. Deferring to the rule of the majority, as in the U.K. is in my view much more efficient way to conduct policy.



 

Section IV

Problems and prospects concerning
international intelligence cooperation
and joint action in counter-terrorism.
Lessons from the EUROPOL-cooperation

Lange:

Now it is our last session and the topic is: Problems and prospects of international intelligence cooperation and joint action in counter-terrorism, and Lessons from EUROPOL-cooperation. I cannot say much about this, because I haven't been involved in police matters, and because thus far there is too little data on EUROPOL to make a judgement. I am approaching this topic a bit cynically, especially in regard to cooperation. Now where do we have real cooperation in intelligence? There are three reasons for the lack of cooperation. We should not be too enthusiastic about short term prospects for meaningful cooperation. The first problem is national interest. What does this mean? It means that in a concrete situation, service A is trying to exchange information with service B, and the guideline is: always give the other one as much junk as you can for as much gold as you can get. This poses a big problem. If intelligence could transcend the boundaries of national interest and if there were a supra-national intelligence structure, then there could be cooperation. I cannot see something like this emerging, so we are still confronted with the trading, where one is trying to cheat the other. The French often point to the American actions during the Bosnian war; that is, modifying satellite images in order to influence political decisions. This is used by French colleagues to argue for an exclusively European intelligence capacity in this area. Then we have a major problem with international intelligence cooperation in the struggle against terrorism. These terrorist networks now entail economic networks. I had the opportunity to look at a list of companies established by Bin Laden cum Al-Qaeda in Sudan alone. There are about 20 companies still active, with contacts outside, and this is just one country. So we have to start from the preposition that there are huge networks, not only Al-Qaeda but others as well.We have to take into account economic networks connected to the regular economy, and if this is the case, then international anti-terrorist cooperation must include economic espionage. But when you throw your net into the ocean of economic information wanting to catch the herring, you also risk killing the dolphin you are supposed to protect. This creates suspicion as well, as one suspects the other of using the pretext of anti-terrorist intelligence to commit economic espionage. The third problem for cooperation is that there exist different intelligence cultures. Just to address one point of view: you know you have a type of intelligence community clearly separated between internal intelligence, counterintelligence, security, and external intelligence; you also have those with closely intertwined internal and external intelligence, and it is extremely difficult for these two types to exchange information in a meaningful way. One will be more driven by domestic interests and have reservations the other type of service doesn't have. So how realistic is meaningful cooperation? What do we have now, and what are the prospects? Or is it just a myth?

Smith:

I think you are wrong when you say that there can't be good intelligence exchanges; there can be. I've been involved in some very good ones, and some very bad ones. It varies. The best are between two services, as opposed to multi-lateral exchanges; the more services involved the more difficult it is. However, the war on terrorism will require multi-lateral exchanges. This was the case in Bosnia because a number of countries were involved in operations there, and there were productive exchanges among services in Bosnia. It is a myth that an intelligence service spends a lot of time trying to fool the service it is having an exchange with. The only reason to have an intelligence exchange is if both sides gain. In short, I think that intelligence exchanges are always useful and are vital in the war against terrorism because they enable services to track terrorists. I think the response from European services, as far as I can tell from news reports, has been excellent following September 11th.

Boyadjiev:

OK, I would like to approach the problem from another angle. I agree entirely with Doug, but he is talking about bilateral cooperation and I would like to speak about multilateral cooperation. As I mentioned previously, for more than 10 years I have been lobbying in Bulgaria and elsewhere for the resurrection of an "old" new slogan, "Spies of the world, unite!" I think one of the active approaches for fighting terrorism is cooperation. I know that it is still utopian to think about an international intelligence community but sooner or later, and I hope sooner, it's going to happen. The enemy is a common enemy for all democratic societies and we ought to find means to work together against the common enemy. I would like to start with two quotations by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, because I found in them answers to some questions we have discussed these past two days. On November 18, 1999, Kofi Annan said in a speech to the General Assembly: "We are all determined to fight terrorism and to do our utmost to banish it from the face of the Earth. But the force we use to fight it should always be proportional and focused on the actual terrorists." The second part of the quotation: "We cannot and must not fight them by using their own methods - by inflicting indiscriminate violence and terror on innocent civilians, including children." I think everyone will agree this ought to be our approach and reaction to terrorism. The second thing I think is important to mention is that when you fight a shadow, because Bin Laden is a shadow, Al-Qaeda is a shadow, the best way to fight the shadow behind the scenes. I am not sure that using all possible military power in the war against the terrorists of September 11th will be more effective than, say, investing 1/100 of the money spent for that war to fight an intelligence war. I personally believe that the American services, with the help of other intelligence services, would have been able to achieve the same results within the same time frame - to catch Bin Laden and the leaders of Al-Qaeda, and to take them to court - by using an intelligence war. But this is my opinion.
Now, let's talk about some problems. With the end of the Cold War, terrorism has become Enemy Number One. A lot of money has been spent not only by the American services but all over the world to fight terrorism, and terrorists have demonstrated the ability to hit any place and anyone. The events on September 11 marked a huge fiasco for international and national security services, and represented a breakdown of the democratic world's immune system. As I said already, I felt responsible for what happened. I didn't have any personal ability to do anything. But if a sound Bulgarian intelligence service had still been in existence, with the abilities it had ten years ago, I am sure that it would have been in a position to detect some preliminary signs. On September 12 I wrote an article in a Bulgarian newspaper saying the next strike would be a biological. Unfortunately, I happened to be right. So biological, chemical, radiological, and ecological attacks are all within the realm of international terrorism. And we cannot rule out terrorists' ability to make a nuclear strike at some point. An attack on global information and communications systems would also be devastating. I recall something Admiral Lacoste said during his first visit in Bulgaria. He gave as an example illegal financial transactions through the Internet and the fact that they represnet more than mere financial transactions on the stock exchange. If the attack is focused here, and it's far from impossible, it can cause horrendous repercussions. How can we protect ourselves from these dangers? I see the solution in broad international cooperation or, as I call it, "Spies of the world, unite!"
I'd like to give some examples from Bulgarian experiences fighting terrorism, and not just on a national level. General Wolf will recall that the backbone of leftist terrorism in West Germany was broken with the arrest of the Baader-Meinhof group in Bulgaria, with the participation of Bulgarian counterintelligence services. That happened in the 1970's, and created problems between the Bulgarian services and the GDR because at that time, we were cooperating in the battle against terrorism with "the enemy", the West German services. The Bulgarian - Austrian agreement on combating international terrorism signed approximately at the same time created another problem with Warsaw Pact members. We were accused of trying to act neutral like Austria and then later seeking to reach an agreement with NATO countries and so on. The third example I would like to mention is the joint operation, Desert Storm. One more thing is important. In Bulgaria on April 8-10, 1992, representatives from 29 intelligence services got together in an unprecedented meeting, held under the auspices of the Bulgarian President. The professionals discussed one topic - "The Cold War is over, what now?" Terrorism was the main issue. So it all began in Sofia. I know of no other official meeting prior to that where these topics were discussed at such a high level. I will finish with the fact that the Bulgarian Foreign Minister (UN General Assembly speech on October 7, 1996) was the first to suggest the need for intelligence sharing in fighting common evils such as terrorism. I will finish with a potential invitation. I hope to have the backing of the Bulgarian government and the new Bulgarian President to hold another such meeting, this time with a different format; that is, gathering together active intelligence officers, politicians, and veterans, to discuss the same topic - international terrorism and how to fight it. My final thought is this: Intelligence is not a force but an instrument used to apply force. We must find common denominators. We need new rules for a game that has no rules. Maybe not official treaties like the Vienna Treaty but, nonetheless, a new code of conduct, new rules, a new kind of control and national and international oversight. I know Dick still disagrees with this, but we'll need international oversight and new level of accountability as well.
Intelligence is the first line of defense. It was relatively easy to count tanks and warheads. Now we need real insight, the ability to analyze emotions and peoples' ways of thinking, and achieve a cross-cultural understanding. This once again means cooperation. Finally, if the intelligence system is not able to warn of catastrophes before they occur, then it is outdated and useless. I hope the intelligence community - national and international - will make changes as result of the tragic events of September 11th. Let's hope this happens sooner rather than later.

Tuđman:

We are faced with a need for international cooperation, intelligence cooperation not only in the field of terrorism but also organized crime, drug trafficking, and smuggling of people. Even in those areas it's much easier to make an agreement than undertaking the joint operation. On the other hand, when we talk about international intelligence cooperation it can be on at least two levels. First of all, it means multilateral cooperation between the services and international organizations. But who will supply the organizations with intelligence? That's not often discussed, but when the functioning of the organization changes, they will share at least the same intelligence. It's irrelevant how it will be collected. I believe that bilateral cooperation is most important. There are examples of effective cooperation but it's often dependent on the quality of the services, not other elements. But the main problem is that there probably will not be multilateral cooperation because of the nature of terrorism. If they plan activities in one country, train the people in another country, finance from a third, and perform activities in a fourth, there is no chance of avoiding multilateral cooperation. A joint operation on a certain problem can be the first step toward multilateral cooperation. Maybe we could begin with a small number of services. One of the issues that we are faced with after September 11 event is multilateral cooperation. I believe there is a dire need for multilateral cooperation; otherwise, terrorist organizations and criminal groups will use the advantages of globalization.

Dedijer:

Todor, you forget the liberation movements of the world. You've got to look at terrorism in light of liberation movements. The Kurds, the Chechens in Russia, they should be free. The only weapon they had was terrorism. They didn't have tanks, they didn't have F-16s, or anything else; they used what they had. There is a danger in condemning all the liberation movements. The second thing is that I think it's dangerous for the President to start infringing on democracy, introducing new rules, and so forth. Democratization of intelligence is happening going all over the world. There are insight and control committees, parliaments and so on who want to know what the intelligence agencies are doing. What have they achieved? What have they missed? and all these scandals, the press wants to expose that. Half the kids in the world have access to information and they are eager to use it. In that sense, there is a tremendous new wave going on in the world. Senator Goldwater once said that half the intelligence in the United States comes from their multinational cooperations. Now the question is: will Government intelligence supply the multinational cooperations or other cooperations in their country with the intelligence they get from abroad and from other countries. This is big problem. If a German firm finds that Sony is making a new product, will it communicate it to the German firm and say "look what the Sony is doing."

Boyadjiev:

We're talking about the private sector and intelligence agencies. There is a problem, and I do not see how it's going to be solved. The intelligence is paid for by taxpayer's money. You cannot use the information to help one company and not help all the competitors. The only way is to make the information public. I am afraid it is not going to happen soon. About Steven's remarks on liberation movements. I am not talking about liberation movements because that's another topic. But I agree with you. The solution is a definition of terrorism that will point out all the aspects and not leave room for speculation about liberators, freedom fighters, fighters for human rights, and so on. When we are talking about terrorism, we are talking about a crime against humanity. I think that is the answer.

Kerr:

I have a comment on multilateral intelligence. We do need to establish a network and communications among the intelligence services because of the complex problems in the world today. Many of the problems that face us are global. Although the countries involved in a particular crisis will change, you cannot wait for the crisis to develop relationships. If you do not exercise those connections you cannot establish them when you need them. So you do need intelligence relationships, just like you need diplomatic relations and other relationships among countries. There are certain areas, Miro mentioned some, where we can have broad agreements for cooperation: terrorism, crime, narcotics, and a variety of others that often involve law enforcement. There are other areas where those partnerships can fluctuate and involve some but not nations. I don't think a UN intelligence service is a practical idea. They have no assets, they have no resources, they have no ability to keep secrets, and they have no independent capability. Finally, on economic intelligence, the CIA and other US organizations collect macro-economic information. But intelligence organizations do not provide this information to business. The Commerce Department supports US business (not very effectively, in my judgment) but intelligence is concerned primarily with broad economic trends, corruption, and specific issues such as oil. There is macro analysis. For example, analysts do look at international banking, the larger economic situation in important countries, the future price of oil, and the impact of corruption and underground economies. These are legitimate targets for intelligence. Passing information on a foreign company to a US company does not happen. That doesn't mean companies don't go out and try to collect that information, but US intelligence is not involved in supporting one company over another. A US ambassador in a country is obviously trying to support US firms and give them insight and contacts, but intelligence is not a player in that process. Maybe it should be, but it isn't.

Wolf:

I don't know which type of international cooperation exists now. I can only speak about the past. I think the way to cooperate in the fight against terrorism is bilateral cooperation. We have seen the difficulties in European economic cooperation. But this is another question. When intelligence services exchange information, they have to protect their sources and so on. During the last years of my active service, we had a project established by the Soviet Service, SOUD. I don't know how to translate this, but it was a recording done in Moscow, using all possible technologies, of identified members of secret services, intelligence services from Western countries, suspicious persons, terrorists, and others of interest to the services. It took a long time to prepare; eventually, all the members of the Warsaw Pact agreed to contribute information about such persons to the system, but every time we had to decide what to give and what not to give. We had the formal right to use the system to obtain information and answers to certain questions, but this was sometimes a problem because all the members had the right to use it. If we knew, for example, the identity of a member of the American station in India, we would provide the information. The whole thing was an attempt to establish international co-operation. I don't know whether the CIA has agreements with other services about exchange of information of that type. But this can realistically only be done step by step. Todor said it could be done very soon, in terms of fighting terrorism. I think it is necessary to create some form of international monitoring in light of the kind of terrorism we have been confronted with since September 11th. As far as this issue is concerned, I do not see a political problem in recognizing the leadership of the American services; of course, on the basis of bilateral equal rights for collecting, providing, and receiving information.

Lacoste:

A Secret Service is essentially at the service of its own country and is one of the main symbols of the sovereignty of the state.
However, a national Secret Service may share intelligence with other foreign or Secret Services whenever its government has given it a formal agreement to do so. But it not necessary to share all one's intelligence; it is normal and legitimate that a country keep its national secrets to itself.
In wartime, within a military alliance against a common enemy, military intelligence is usually fully integrated between the allies, because operational objectives are well-defined. It is not often so clear with political and strategic intelligence when, for example, war goals are different.
In peacetime, alliances are much looser; many other factors can also affect political co-operation, not to mention the sharing of secret Intelligence.
After September 11, 2001, many countries declared themselves ready to join the United States in their fight against "international terrorism". What does this mean exactly for the Secret Services ? We need to be aware of the difficulties and limits of such cooperation.
Let me raise three points .
What exactly does the expression "international terrorism mean" ? It ultimately depends upon the context and, moreover, terrorism is expressed in a variety of causes, forms, degrees, and participants.
In some situations it is limited to a single country; i.e., the Irish IRA in the U.K., and the revolutionary Red Brigades in Italy. In other situations it involves two or three countries simultaneously: the Basque ETA in Spain and France; the Kurdish PKK in Turkey and Germany.
Patriots fighting against an occupation army on their national territory are designated "terrorists" by that army, and "resistance fighters" by themselves and their friends. Many terrorist actions occurred during colonial wars, and were qualified as such by the former colonial powers. The liberated people called them liberation fighters.
Since the beginning of the second Intifada, Israel has been fighting against Palestinian terrorists; however, 50 years ago the founders of Israel practised brutal terrorism against the British army. From one point of view terrorists are criminals, and from the opposite heroes!
When the spiral of violence and hatred is in motion, words have no real significance on either side. After the World Trade Center attack, the enemy was first designated by Americans as "Islamic terrorism". But this expression encompasses many different models, such as Philippine terrorists, Hamas or Hezbollah, Palestinian FPLP or FPLP-CG, Algerian GIA, Egyptian Muslim Brothers, and so on.
It is necessary to designate precisely which form of international terrorism we are speaking of in order to fight against it. Today we should state that our objective for the coalition is " Bin Laden's Al Qaeda network".
2 ) Several rules must be observed to achieve cooperation between intelligence services.
First of all, one must take into account that there are differences in traditions and behavior between criminal police investigators, foreign Secret Service agents, and customs officers. Even when there is a national "Intelligence Community", it is often difficult to achieve open and full co-operation between those services (an example of this is the FBI, CIA, and State Department investigations of Al Qaeda in Saudi Arabia prior to September 11th).
In Western Europe we have had good co-operation in criminal and terrorist affairs for quite some time. France initiated the TREVI group among the police of several countries to deal specifically with terrorism, the "Schengeningen" protocols to fight trans-national crime, and the EUROPOL system to share police intelligence.
I think it is sometimes easier to share intelligence between specialists of the same branches from different countries than between different services of the same country. But again it is not necessary to share all criminal or terrorist intelligence; in joint European organisations only what is of common interest is shared; for example, when criminals are using open borders to operate in several countries.
But intelligence is not the only issue; the justice systems are also involved. There are many difficulties because of the differences between national legal systems, procedures, and so on. There might be some progress on this in Europe since the New York and Washington attacks, as European governments have agreed to determine "Judiciary European Space". However, it will take years to become fully operational.
3- "Politicization" of intelligence
When threatened by internal terrorism, many states prefer to "export" the dangerous proponents to foreign "battlefields" rather than keep them inside the country. The King of Jordan did this when he expelled the Palestinian extremists (the infamous "Black September"). The Saudis preferred to send their fundamentalists to Afghanistan. The Syrian leader has been brutal against his own extremists, and they now realize it is impossible for them to survive in Syria.

Other nations, for example Great Britain, have a tradition of political asylum, and allow many well-known Arab extremists to live freely in London, under the condition that they stay away from trouble inside the UK. It is a "gentlemen's agreement".
In other places, the terrorists may have friends or "fellow travellers" in neighbouring countries. Some members of the Italian Red Brigades received support in the early 1980s from leftist radical groups in France, and the socialist government looked the other way.
But it is not sufficient to have co-operation between just intelligence and law enforcement services; the judiciary systems must be involved as well. This is a big problem, because, of the 15 countries of the European Union, several observe "Roman Law", others British, and a third Scandinavian, notwithstanding their specific procedural customs or legal limitations (e.g. the present arguments about death sentence).
In conclusion, I strongly recommend that co-operation between Intelligence Services against international terrorism be organised under the principle of specific "task forces", and not through new bureaucratic, multinational structures. Pragmatism is the rule here, and bilateral or trilateral teams are more efficient than large organisations.

Gömbös:

I'd like to make some comments. I believe there are two wars going on simultaneously: a military war and an intelligence war led by the United States. Despite the anti-terrorist coalition, responsibility for the intelligence war ultimately cannot be shared. It is an American duty. An important issue is the control of the movement of money. Access to private banking information would be important. But this level of information would give American intelligence services significant commercial information. So some countries will be hesitant to provide unfiltered information. The information filtered by a state can tainted in many ways. There is the question of what to do with secret accounts and covert corporations that provide a primary source of income for some countries. These countries will lose a source of income and will therefore resist. There are many countries ready to co-operate in the war against the terrorism; for example, Russia and Israel. But these countries are also tring to use the war for their own interests. They are trying to influence the United States to gain maximum benefits. Israel would like the main thrust of the operation to be against Palestinian movements. The Russians would like it to be directed against anti-Russian movements such as the Chechens. The next issue is - Because this is not only a military war but also an intelligence war, the next issue is American operations upon partner territory. They will want to limit American activities on their soil. The partners will skew data, so the Americans will have to take into account the laws of the host nation.

Ćosić:

International intelligence cooperation is important, but we have to be aware of practical limitations coming from conflict of interests in multinational international missions and the particular interests of each state. The failure of the UN in Bosnia, and the problems of IFOR, SFOR and KFOR were the result of disintegrated intelligence systems and the inability to successfully integrate intelligence cooperation, since there existed different interests and political attitudes among the key international players in the multi-national missions. When you have multinational missions, the games among the players can get intense. Different political interests limit intelligence cooperation. Valuable conclusions can be drawn out from the lessons learned in BiH.

Ferš:

I agree with Mr. Ćosić that multilateral cooperation is different than bilateral cooperation. Who will lead it, what is the main task and so on are some of the questions we have to answer. But multilateral cooperation is necessary, and must support it. Everything must be codified, but not a formal act but by a "gentlemen's agreement". We heard today that we are playing a game; in multilateral cooperation, we do play games but not a game of who will win or lose. It is a game of trust. Without trust and clearly-defined tasks, multilateral cooperation cannot exist. So we first identify the targets, problems, and tasks, and then we select the priorities. For somebody with good multilateral cooperation, the priorities might be terrorism or money laundering. Some services are more effective in one area and others in another, but we never divulge our sources. We then perform the concrete task. We try to create a partnership because a partnership is better than simple cooperation.

Međimorec:

As far as I know, the Mediterranean countries are cooperating multilaterally in the field of intelligence. A group of European countries, members of NATO, have also formed an intelligence community. Our service was not yet ready to enter either of these organizations. We lacked the experience for such a multilateral cooperation. But from the bilateral ties we formed, especially working with Bosnia and Herzegovina's intelligence service, we learned many lessons, the most important being that when both the common individual interests of the state and the mutual interests of the two countries were fulfilled, cooperation was successful. If there were no such interests, intelligence cooperation was unsuccessful. The best example is the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1995. After Dayton, foreign fighters and mujahedeens were forced to leave the country. The Croatian and Bosnia and Herzegovina services had both collected a lot of valuable information about them. Later on, we shared this documentation on the mujahedeen with European and overseas services, and even with some Arab countries, all of whom were happy to have information important for natio-nal security and the struggle against terrorism. This was a prelude to the events of September 11th. The spread of terrorism from Afghanistan to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia and back to the Middle East and Afghanistan marked the beginning of the process, which culminated in the attacks on the US. I repeat, when mutual interests are satisfied, cooperation is possible. If there is trust between intelligence services and a high degree of professionalism, multinational cooperation can be successful.

Lange:

Tell me what would have to happen for mankind to unite and heal this rift. Maybe if dangerous aliens were to land on earth. But as far as I know, the September 11 terrorists are not alien enough to bring about this international cooperation.

 

 

 

 

 

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