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Ron Aledo, former CIA contractor analyst: “There may be naval clashes; India is cooperating with the US against China.”

Dear Mr Aledo, you have been a CIA contractor analyst for several years; it is one of the organizations where an intelligence analyst can best develop. What remarkable experiences have you had during your contract for the CIA?

He was a contractor for the CIA and the DIA for several years. My most remarkable experience was with the DIA, where I was a counterintelligence analyst. The CIA was an analyst for the Middle East during the time more hard of the Iraq war in 2007. As an analyst contractor, DIA had the opportunity to analyze situations geopolitical worldwide, help my colleagues specialists in this or that part of the world. My position allowed me to unify or to blend as we say of several specialties in addition to counterintelligence: political-military, military, the influence of the masses (public diplomacy / strategic communications as we call it), etc.

Also, at this stage, I was able to analyze the specific situation in many countries, work with the entire Intelligence Community and write many documents and reports, including one for the White House Intelligence Council, bone advisors in the White House under the Obama administration. My experience is completed by having worked in the Joint Staff in matters for Afghanistan and detention of terrorists and insurgents, DHS Director for joint operations with Mexico, and having been an advisor to the Afghan National Police in Kabul. I arrived from Iraq just in June of this year.

cia intelligence cycle
Michael S. Goodman and David Omand - www.cia.gov

How would you explain the work of an intelligence analyst?

We are the "brains" of the Intelligence Community, the 16 agencies that compose it. We connect the dots and transform what we call raw information into intelligence as such. The difference between information and intelligence is that the first one has not been passed through the analysis process, while the second is the product that remains after the analysis process. At the strategic level, we receive the information that is obtained by all the Ints (HUMINT, SIGINT, MASINT, GEOINT, OSINT, etc.), we do the blending, and we provide different hypotheses based on what happened, could be happening, and possibly pass. We try to explain the world, its causes, and possible future scenarios. At the operational level, we strive to provide all the intelligence necessary to plan a military operation, covert ops, or even police.

What is the process of intelligence analysis?

In what we call the Cycle the leader whoever in an organization, from the President or the Director of the DIA, or the General of the Division, or the Police Inspector, provides his intelligence with the requirements, what we call the priority Intelligence requirements, bone Priorities What you need to know more urgently. Which obtains such information by the Int q u e is (the collector) passes the raw data to the analyst. The analyst blends and converts the data into intelligence after the analysis process. That intelligence is disseminated and finally returns to the leader who originated the priority Intelligence requirements so that he can make the most appropriate and timely decision. At the operational level, intelligence first helps to choose a route or action, the Course of Action. Once this COA is selected, we provide the intelligence necessary for that operation to be successful.

What are the most critical elements when evaluating a scenario? Economy, technology, alliances ...

It depends on what are you analyzing, whom, or what. First, we look for everything that is known for sure about a subject, the facts, and data that are not subject to interpretation. Then the gaps or voids that we don't know. Later we try to fill those gaps or voids as much as possible. In a country, what more we seek are the intentions or motivations on the one hand and abilities (what really can be done) on the other. From there, we all develop the necessary hypotheses, and finally, we select the most probable hypotheses. In the US, we have not only the specialties of the Ints but also the subject: geopolitics, military, counterintelligence, narcotics, leadership and personalities, human terrain, economic, even medical and health.

kgb intelligence cycle
Trump met with Vladimir Putin 2017: Mikhail Klimentyev/AFP/Getty Images

Are there differences in the intelligence analysis between different countries? Do the MI5, the CIA, the MOSSAD, or the Russian Int operate the same?

Yes, of course. Each country has its doctrine, training, variables. The US is one of the countries that has the professional career of an independent analyst. Other countries use Ex-operational analysts who wish to leave fieldwork. Each country uses its training and education doctrine for its analysts. In the US, the training and training of intelligence analysts changed radically after the 2001 attacks and the fiasco of the imaginary mass destruction weapons of Iraq, 2003. Everything anyone wants to know about US intelligence can be informed on this page https://fas.org/irp/index.html   and of course, here https://www.cia.gov/library/center-for-the-study-of-intelligence, and of course, everything is 100% legal, open-source, unclassified.

What does the operation of the CNI look like abroad?

They are competent professionals and do what they can with the possible budget constraints they have.

Intelligence services make predictions, but they also apply tactics (covert operations) to achieve objectives. How do functions differ within organisms?

A covert operation is a tool of a state X. The state can be used to project its power outside a military operation or purely political or economic activity and also covert operations. The classical intelligence doctrine says that a great human intelligence service usually does two things: get intelligence and covert operations. About getting intelligence is what I already talked about: the cycle of intelligence that goes through obtaining, analyzing, and disseminating. Undercover operations are those that serve a specific purpose or mission, and range from eliminating an objective (called murder), to manipulating public opinion in a country, to organizing and paying for street protests, to promoting coups by states, to buy the press and foreign politicians, etc., etc. All is done to advance the political and economic objectives of state A abroad. The cold war was a classic example of these covert operations. The history of Latin America during this period is actually the history of the powerful and efficient Cuban Intelligence Service. The Soviet Union organized revolutions and coups. Today Israel is the best in cover ops.

What agents or organizations are applying intelligence tactics on the global board apart from the states?

Intelligence is typical of states clearly is. Apart from this, terrorist organizations have what we could call their intelligence services. In fact, the analysis of the Living System that is used to measure and analyze terrorist organizations has up to 19 components or cells of the system, of which many are related to intelligence and counterintelligence. In a broad sense also the large multinational companies, NGOs, etc., etc. also have their intelligence departments.

These non-state agents… To what extent do they influence the politics of the states?

When it related to influence, NGOs are powerful. They win public opinion, the media, and politicians. And so politicians feel obliged to please or serve the interests of NGOs. We can see this in global warming activist groups, feminist groups, pro-Third World immigration, etc., etc. At the policy level, we can also see how groups called terrorists can have great power in a government or state such as Hizbollah in Lebanon, Hamas in the Gaza Strip, etc.

Ron Aledo with the head of Afghan intelligence General Safi.

Applying intelligence analysis to the global board, How can Trump's action be understood in the game?

Trump has at his disposal the most potent intelligence community in the world. The one with more resources and global reach. I do not believe that it is in Trump's DNA using intelligence agencies, as it is in Putin's, for example, due that he is a former intelligence operative; he is a teacher using his intelligence apparatus to the fullest. Even so, Trump has the advantage of technology, an almost limitless budget, and the universal reach of his intelligence system.

How does Xi Jingpin's performance looks like?

His goal is to make China a superpower and more even the greatest and mighty superpower of the world in a few decades. Of course, the US is the number one power in the world that prevents it. What China tries is to supplant the US in the world. With Trump that is very difficult for China because Trump is planted with a united front. Since Clinton in the 90s decided to sign an arrangement with China that would turn the country into the large US factory where US multinationals could close factories on US soil to open them in China and pay workers a fraction, US food with his blood, which ticks, to China. Trump has said enough to this. For Trump, Capitalism is not based on the profit margin of the multinational but on the jobs created by that multinational on US soil even if the margins have to suffer. This is slapping the Chinese growth model. China, therefore, uses all its strength, economic, and political to face the US.

Can India be decisive in the Asian scenario?

It already is because it is one of the giants of Asia that grows at an enormous speed and is also a nuclear power. India has conflicts with Pakistan over Kashmir, and borders with China. You can not risk war with China by China since the economic territory is more than five times larger than that of India and also China is allied with Pakistan to open a second front if a war breaks out. Even if India has to be taken seriously. A couple of years ago, I had the opportunity to meet with the Home Minister of India, Rajnath Singh, and visit New Dehli and Hyderabad. I could see the growth of India in influence, economy, and weight in Asia.

What predictions can be made about the Indo-Pacific scenario?

India is cooperating with the US and many other countries in the Pacific on a united front against China and its maritime ambitions. Sooner or later, there could be naval clashes, and I believe that India can be part of those clashes. Also, I think that the US can use India as an ally to corner China in the current US-China trade war.

Is Europe out of the game in the 21st century?

No. Western Europe is a tremendous economic power. Germany is the economic engine of the continent, the United Kingdom a great military and nuclear power, both France and the United Kingdom have seats in the Permanent Council of the United Nations, etc. Europe observes the US and China in their trade war but is also a player of high power.

How is Russia's real influence on the foreign policy of Europe and the US?

Russia is an anti-NATO rival and an economic and political rival of the US and the European Union. They fight for influence, contracts, military supremacy, etc. They are realistic interests, using oil and gas, military alliances, intelligence agencies, etc., to gain supremacy over the other — the classic RealPolitik.

Dear Mr. Aledo, thank you very much for your time. We look forward to having your experience and knowledge in Quixote Globe in the future.

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