From Tue Jun 4 13:30:06 2002
Date: Mon, 3 Jun 2002 21:04:19 -0500 (CDT)
From: MichaelP>
Subject: CIA on Role of Intelligence Services In a Globalized World
Article: 139682
To: undisclosed-recipients:;

The Role of Intelligence Services In a Globalized World

Remarks by John C. Gannon, Chairman, National Intelligence Council, at the Conference Sponsored by Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, Berlin Germany 21 May 2001 (as prepared for delivery)

Thank you. I am delighted to be back in Berlin and honored to participate in this timely and relevant conference sponsored by the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, which commands such respectand deservedly soaround the world.

As you know, I am Chairman of the National Intelligence Council, or NIC, a small think tank of senior analysts reporting to the Director of Central Intelligence that produces estimates on priority national security issues for the President and his top advisers. Today, I would like to share with you some observations about the future drawn from the findings of a strategic study the NIC published recently called Global Trends 2015. (6.4MB)

I want to emphasize that Global Trends 2015 is not just a product. More importantly, it reflects a process of engagement with outside sources of information and expertise that exemplifies how our intelligence community must behave in the future. I have discussed this report, at their invitation, with several USG agencies, including our FBI, our military services, and our diplomats at State Department, as well as with numerous experts in academia and with foreign governments.

To deal with this future, in my view, our services will require a revolution in five areas: First in our communication with senior policymakers who must understand and support our mission and who must benefit directly from the intelligence we provide; second, in collaboration with new partners within our own governments, with law enforcement, and with liaison abroad; third, in our approach to advanced technology, which will be critical to our success; fourth, in our recruitment and development of the skills we need to achieve our mission; and, fifth, in our commitment to leverage outside expertise, which will require unprecedented transparency in much of the way we do business.

Let me elaborate a bit on each of these points:

First, democratic governments and electorates, in collaboration with many new partners at home and abroad, recognize that the strategic threat environment has changed profoundly in the past decade with the collapse of the Soviet Union. At the same time, few of my countrymen, and I suspect yours, need to be convinced that our governments will continue to need intelligence services to protect their interests in a dangerous world. The question is whether we are demonstrating to our leaders and our parliaments that we are adapting our capabilities to new challenges; whether, in fact, we can do the tough job ahead. Our parliaments ask not whether we should exist, but what exactly our new mission should be and how much it should cost.

Second, to position ourselves to succeed, we must recognize that the much broader national security agendas we face will be increasingly transnational in nature and that our responses will have to be more collaborative across the agencies of our own governmentsincluding intelligence and law enforcementand across the borders of friends and allies. Threats—from global financial volatility, to illegal migration, to terrorism, organized crime, and information operations—will be globally dispersed and often complex, requiring close international cooperation from the get go.

Third, Technology. Every aspect of the intelligence business—collection, operations, analysis, dissemination, and protection of our sources and methods—will depend on the application of new technologies. Intelligence services will need to have access to state of the art technologies, which can only be realized these days by partnerships in the commercial sector.

Fourth, People. To cover the complex issues and meet the formidable technological challenges ahead, services must have the right mix of professionals who are recruited, trained, and deployed to deal effectively with the agenda of the future. Most of us, I believe, are struggling with this.

Fifth, Outside Experts. No service is likely to have in-house today the information and expertise needed to answer the critical questions our governments expect us to tackle: in such areas as science and technology, especially biotechnology; environment; humanitarian disasters; infectious diseases; etc. Services, therefore, will need to have sustained partnerships with outside experts in academia, the corporate world, and—most importantly—in the scientific community. GT2015 is an example, a model really, of intelligence professionals working with outside experts on a wide range of issues.

The NICs Global Trends 2015 study is not a traditional intelligence report based on classified sources and methods. Rather, as I have said, it reflects an Intelligence Community fully engaged with outside experts to talk about the future. For over a year, the NIC worked in close collaboration with specialists throughout the government as well as in academia, business, and the private sector to produce a strategic study that would identify drivers that will shape the world of 2015. The drivers that emerged from our discussions include:

Taken together, these drivers intersect to create an integrated picture of the world of 2015, about which we can make projections with varying degrees of confidence. The resulting report has drawn a lot of constructive reaction from US and foreign government officials and from the press and nongovernmental experts in the United States and abroad.

So, let's run through the drivers.


First, demographic trends—including population growth, urbanization, migration, and health issues.

The world in 2015 will be populated by some 7.2 billion people, up from 6.1 billion in the year 2000. More than 95 percent of the increase in world population will be found in developing countries:


By 2015 more than half of the worlds population will be urban. The number of people living in mega-cities—those containing more than 10 million inhabitants—will double to more than 400 million. These will include Mexico City, Buenos Aires, Lagos, Cairo, Karachi, Mumbai, Calcutta, Dhaka, Beijing, Shanghai, and Tokyo.


In addition to increasing urbanization, during the next 15 years globalization, demographic imbalances between industrialized and developing countries, and interstate and civil conflicts will fuel increasing international migration. Rising migration will create opportunities and challenges:

Illegal migration—another issue that will demand closer international cooperation and better coordination between intelligence and law enforcement—will be facilitated by alien-smuggling syndicatesand will grow dramatically—especially in the United States, Europe, and in the more developed countries of Asia, Africa, and Latin America.


Another form of illegal migration is the reprehensible crime of trafficking women and children across international borders for sexual exploitation and forced labor. Human trafficking—which includes alien smuggling as well as trafficking in women and children—is now the second most profitable criminal activity—following only drug trafficking.

The US Intelligence Community assesses that trafficking in women and children is likely to continue at high levels in the years ahead given the large profits, relatively low risk, and rare convictions for traffickers. Increased international attention, countermeasures, and law enforcement will be required to stem this heinous activity.


Looking at global health concerns, our report projects that the gap between the health of people living in developed and developing countries will widen over the next 15 years. In developed countries, progress against a variety of maladies will be achieved by 2015 as a result of generous health spending and major medical advances—sparked by the biotechnology revolution.

Developing countries, by contrast, are likely to experience a surge in both infectious and noninfectious diseases and in general will have inadequate health care capacities and spending.



Looking at the third driver—natural resources and the environment—world food grain production and stocks in 2015 will be adequate to meet the needs of a growing world population. Advances in agricultural technologies will play a key role. But distribution problems will persist in some countries.


The outlook for water is troubling:

By 2015 nearly half the worlds population—more than 3 billion people—will live in countries that are water-stressed—having less than 1,700 cubic meters of water per capita per year—mostly in Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, and northern China.


Our report also projects that many of todays environmental problems will worsen over the next 15 years and I know that this is a major concern in Europe. With increasingly intensive land use, significant degradation of arable land will continue as will the loss of tropical forests. Given the promising global economic outlook—which I'll get to in a minute—greenhouse gas emissions will increase substantially.

The work that intelligence services—including the CIA and the BND—are doing on environmental issues reflects the broadened definition of national security that is appropriate for today's globalized world.

Several years ago—in 1997—the National Intelligence Council, which I chair, produced an unclassified assessment entitled The Environmental Outlook in Central and Eastern Europe. The report assessed that environmental conditions in CEE countries have improved considerably since the collapse of Communism, but CEE governments face an uphill battle to build on that progress.

One area of particular interest to CIA is environmental crime


On the energy front, despite a 50 percent increase in global demand, energy resources will be sufficient. But there will be major changes in the geopolitics of energy.

Asia—especially China and to a lesser extent, India—will drive the expansion in energy demand, replacing North America as the leading energy consumption region and accounting for more than half of the world's total increase in demand.


Looking at the third driver—the global economy, though susceptible to cyclical downturns, is well positioned to achieve a sustained period of dynamism through 2015.

Our study suggests that the fundamentals of a global economy driven by information technology are strong, including increased international trade and investment, improved macro-economic policies, and the rising expectations of growing middle classes. Dynamism will be strongest among so-called emerging markets—especially in the two Asian giants, China and India—but will be broadly based worldwide, including in both industrialized and many developing countries.

The networked global economy will be a net contributor to increased political stability in the world in 2015, but the rising tide of the global economy will not lift all boats. The information revolution will make the persistence of poverty more visible, and regional differences will remain large, notably to the disadvantage of Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia and the Caucasus.


Looking at the fourth driver, the world will encounter quantum leaps in science and technology. The continuing diffusion of information technology and new applications of biotechnology will be at the crest of the wave.

Internet usage in Europe is already expanding rapidly. As you know, with the introduction of flat-rate access, the number of Germans who are connected to the Internet is projected to grow substantially over the next three years—boosting e-commerce and Germany's rapidly growing Internet economy.


By 2015, the biotechnology revolution will be in full swing with major achievements in combating disease, increasing food production, reducing pollution, and enhancing the quality of life. Many of these developments, especially in the medical field, will remain costly and will be available mainly in the West and to wealthy segments of other societies.


Developments in other technologies are also noteworthy.


Turning to the fifth driver, nation-states will continue to be the dominant actors on the world even though they will confront fundamental tests of effective governance. The decisions that governments will make will be the critical factor that determines whether the negative trends I have described so far will continue or indeed will be reversed, and whether the full benefits of the positive trends I have cited can be fully realized by struggling countries.

Globalization will complicate government decision-making and create increasing demands for international cooperation:

Transnational criminal organizations will pose a particular challenge to nation-states. Such groups will become increasingly adept at exploiting the global diffusion of sophisticated information, financial, and transportation networks.

Criminal organizations and networks based in North America, Western Europe, China, Colombia, Israel, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, and Russia will expand the scale and scope of their activities.


Let me say a few words about the sixth driver—the nature of future conflict. The risk of war among developed countries will be low over the next 15 years. But the international community will continue to face the possibility of interstate wars as well as a number small-scale internal conflicts.

The potential for inter-state conflict will arise from rivalries in Asia, ranging from India-Pakistan to China-Taiwan, as well as among the antagonists in the Middle East. Their potential lethality will grow, driven by the availability of weapons of mass destruction, longer-range missile delivery systems and other technologies.

The bottom line is that the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction will tend to spur a reversion to prolonged, lower-level conflict.


Over the next 15 years, internal conflicts stemming from religious, ethnic, economic or political disputes—such as we have seen in Bosnia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Sierra Leone, Congo, and Indonesia—will remain at current levels or even increase in number.

Meanwhile, states with poor governance; ethnic, cultural, or religious tensions; weak economies; and porous borders will be prime breeding grounds for terrorism. In such states, domestic groups will challenge the entrenched government, and transnational networks seeking safehavens.


The United States and other developed countries will face asymmetric threats in which state and nonstate adversaries avoid direct engagement with military forces but devise strategies, tactics, and weapons to exploit perceived weaknesses.

Increasing reliance on computer networks make developed countries critical infrastructures more attractive as targets. Computer network operations today offer adversaries new options for anonymous attacks. We do not know how quickly or effectively such adversaries as terrorists or disaffected states will develop the tradecraft to use cyber warfare tools and technology, or, in fact, whether cyber warfare will ever evolve into a decisive combat arm. Clearly, we all need to collaborate in defining and responding to the cyber threat. It is a classic transnational issue.

Rapid and encouraging advances and diffusion of biotechnology, nanotechnology, and the materials sciences, moreover, will add to the capabilities of adversaries to engage in biological warfare or bio-terrorism.

Such asymmetric approaches—whether undertaken by states or nonstate actors—will become the dominant characteristic of most threats to the US homeland and to US allies. So, looking at the world of 2015 as a whole, what are the implications for governments and their intelligence services?

I suggest four conclusions for nation-states:

Let me conclude with three corollaries for the intelligence business, which, hopefully, will provoke some useful discussion among us.

Today's open source environment challenges us to provide desktop Internet access to all of our analysts to help them develop contacts in the commercial sector with open source companies; and to incentive their contact with outside experts who have much information and expertise to share. Mastering open source information will be an imperative, not an option, for the intelligence business because it will increasingly contain the answers to critical national security questions. In a near reversal of the old order, open-source information will dominate the universe of most intelligence analysts—the problem will be coping with vast amounts of information rather than too little.

Let me stop here. Id be happy to take your comments and questions.