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Strategy in the Contemporary World

Strategy in the Contemporary World (7th edn)

John Baylis, James J. Wirtz, and Jeannie L. Johnson
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date: 03 June 2023

p. 1459. Intelligence and Strategylocked

p. 1459. Intelligence and Strategylocked

  • Roger Z. George


This chapter examines the role of intelligence in the development and execution of strategy. It begins with a discussion of what intelligence is all about and how its utility has been viewed by strategists. In particular, it considers the different components of the ‘intelligence cycle’, namely, intelligence collection, intelligence analysis, and special intelligence missions that rest on effective counterintelligence and counterespionage. It then charts the history of US intelligence, from its use to support cold war strategies of containment and deterrence to its more recent support to US strategies for counterterrorism and counterinsurgency. It also reviews the challenges and causes of ‘strategic surprise’, citing a number of historical cases such as the September 11 terrorist attacks. The chapter concludes with an assessment of how the US intelligence community has performed since reforms were made in response to 9/11 and its focus on new threats posed by cyberwar and cyberattacks.

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