Personal and academic blog. Explores the borderlands between rhetoric, politics and intelligence.


The power of collaborative intelligence?

Ever so often, a little development shows how the internet is increasingly powering collaborative intelligence efforts. The increasing number of "sensors" out there (mobile-phones, etc etc) and the many specialist corners of the internet makes for more and more value in the open intelligence "production" on the internet. And compared to closed intelligence productions, the free flow of debate, rhetorical "anti-logos", makes for much more nuanced analyses in the end.

The latest of such anecdotes is that the US Airforce has just disclosed a hitherto secret drone project it was working on. The french newspaper Liberation's Secret Defence blog had pictures of a mysterious drone over Afghanistan, brought a picture snapped over Afghanistan, by god-knows-who, a grainy photo of a flying UAV. This unknown model was circulated and processed in a lot of specialist blogs and a pretty credible explanation was arrived at. At the same time, new pictures surfaced. And voilá! If you secret is safe with everyone on the internet, why not go public as the US Airforce did. Read more here.

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The mysterious Israeli Airstrike: Revisited

Last year, Israeli airplanes hit a target inside Syria - and the expected fuss over that incident, didn't materialise. This has led people to speculate that it was a nuclear facility, but not much is know.

Now, the New Yorker provides us with some quality journalism in digging deep into the story and revealing some of the contradictions that other media (and most of us bloggers) have raced past.

An interesting aspect of the article is how much information can be found in Open Sources and with some dedicated effort turned into usable intelligence.

Whatever was under construction, with North Korean help, it apparently had little to do with agriculture?or with nuclear reactors?but much to do with Syria?s defense posture, and its military relationship with North Korea. And that, perhaps, was enough to silence the Syrian government after the September 6th bombing.

A Strike in the Dark. What did Israel bomb in Syria? by Seymour M. Hersh

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Fly-by to fame

Recently it was publicised that Denmark had had a brush in with the new aggressive Russian strategic bomber circus, touring the world at the time (See: "The Good Ol' War and the Bad New One").

But nobody picked up on the implications for Danish intelligence. If Russia resurges as a powerful player on the world-stage, our geographic location will once again provide us with an advantage. In the Cold War our bargaining chip was SIGINT and shipsightings and such. If we're lucky, Putin will play that back in our hands....

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