Human Intelligence Essay Sample

Published: 2022-05-02
Human Intelligence Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Intelligence services
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1686 words
15 min read

Section 1 - Topic Discussion and Background

Concisely describe and define a problem scenario that could benefit from Human Intelligence (HUMINT) intervention.

The phrase "sleeper cell" contributes to important distinctions and confusion on the nature of terrorism threat in the US. Sleeper cell is defined as an operative who infiltrates the government or the society and is there to stay dominant until activated based on a particular chain of events or a pre-arranged signal (Desai, 2016). However, unless activated, a sleeper cell does nothing operational apart from blending into the society. Therefore, human information during the cold war was a powerful tool of Human intelligence (HUMINT) used as a deterrent in monitoring terrorist activities (Desai, 2016).

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Explain why you selected this particular problem.

Despite technological prowess of the US, sleeper cells has been able to execute gruesome attacks once activated using a particular chain of events or a pre-arranged signal (Desai, 2016). No technology can detect them nor notice their movements. For example, the response to 11 September terrorism attack saw the subsequent administrative shakeups and the introduction and implementation of stringent security measures (Wieder, 2005). However, such an initial reaction of the US may not have been enough to reduce the danger of terrorism. Today, there is a need to readdress the effectiveness of US intelligence services to ensure there is a readiness to protect the country from mortal surprises in an age of international terrorism and nuclear proliferation (Wieder, 2005). At this point Human intelligence (HUMINT) becomes essential. Therefore, HUMINT intelligence network is a powerful medium to deter impending terrorist attacks from sleeper cells.

Review historical background and pertinent intelligence issues that relate to the problem.

The power of human information was first seen during Cold War when HUMINT intelligence was used in deter and monitor terrorist activities (Bonner and Seth, 2002). Since 1979, many Muslims have waged Jihad in Bosnia, Afghanistan, Chechnya, and most recently Syria, Yemen, Iraq, and Somalia (Masi, 2015). These people have left their countries to be attending training camps and ideologically indoctrinated in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. For example, during Jihad in Bosnia and Afghanistan, most men were recruited Muslim charity organization linked to Maktab al-Khidmat (Masi, 2015). These men are taught paramilitary skills, and their mindsets are radicalized. Al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups have used such networks to their advantage. For example, in 1992, Abdel Basit arrived in the US, and he used contacts from Brooklyn's Alkifah Refugee Center, one of the US branches of Maktab al-Khidmat. He immediately cobbled a team, which helped him in planning and executing the World Trade Center Bombing in 1993 (Masi, 2015).

Successful use of HUMINT happened in India during the 'mukhbir" scheme in Mumbai (Bonner and Seth, 2002). After the 1993 attacks, the Mumbai Police Department decided to give impetus to the "mukhbir" scheme by placing informants in every area and their information and movement regulated on the level of a local police station. The informant system worked wonders AND Mumbai did not see any significant terrorist attacks between 1993 and 2005 (Bonner and Seth, 2002). Their success was primarily based on HUMINT. The informants informed the police and the attacks would be averted. The US, continue to support HUMINT by increasing the budget and funding. The CIA's sources that report about terrorist activities and groups have increased leading to better HUMINT which is precisely what the country requires (Bonner and Seth, 2002).

Briefly describe how Human Intelligence is likely to offer a practical solution to the problem.

The main reason for the collapse of the global war on terrorism is the failure of human intelligence. HUMINT intelligence is collected through interpersonal contact, the difference from other technical intelligence gathering disciplines like imagery intelligence (IMINT) and signals intelligence (SIGINT) (Desai, 2016). Human intelligence (HUMINT) is the collection of information or intelligence reasons from humans and related documents. It involves the human intelligence network by placing informants who through conversations and interrogations with individuals would gather valuable information. For example, if sleeper cells were being activated or arms were being transported through US borders, the informants would inform the police, and the attacks would be averted (Desai, 2016). It provides different kinds of information that can be used to monitor and deter terrorist activities. HUMINT can provide observations during events from refugees, and travelers, and provide data on things such as sensitive information from spies or defectors (Desai, 2016). HUMINT can also provide data on networks of interest and interpersonal relationships. Therefore, Knowledge of sleeper cells can only achieve by deploying informants and spies in these enemy areas. For example, Uncovering terror plots such as the detection of letter bombs that targets synagogues in the US and arrests in Europe are only credited to HUMINT (Desai, 2016). Therefore, HUMINT has positive intelligence with a strong counterintelligence value.

Section 2 - Organization and Mission

Specifically, identify the HUMINT organization that is chartered for and capable of conducting intelligence operations to correct the problem defined in Part 1 of this project.

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is the chief example of HUMINT organization in the United States. CIA HUMINT was created in 1947, and it has foreign nationals to carry out the espionage-the use of travelers to collect intelligence and debriefing of defectors and individuals with valuable information (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). CIA HUMINT operations have been strategic since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the US with the aim to capture and execute terrorist leaders and their supporters and interrupt terrorist activities (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). CIA HUMINT has also brought all elements of the intelligence community together to gather information across the world on terrorist groups on the manner in which they operate, who finance and support them and where they find sanctuary (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). Therefore, the CIA is the best HUMINT organization in the world. It knows better what is happening in the complex, international world of terrorism.

Include a concise mission statement that defines the objectives and parameters that the organization will operate under.

The CIA HUMINT primary objective is to execute its national security mission by providing actionable intelligence to capture and execute terrorist leaders and their supporters and interrupt terrorist activities inside and outside the US (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). Officers in CIA HUMINT perform some functions to support and execute the mission such as direct intelligence support to collection operations and collectors, an overt and clandestine collection of intelligence and management of the reporting cycle and collection (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018).

Describe the participants you expect will be involved in the mission (both friendly and adversarial).

The CIA HUMINT has professional officers from different agencies including the State Department, the FBI, Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), and National Security Agency (NSA) (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). These agencies work together to provide intelligence on international terrorists looking to sponsor terrorism in the US. The CIA HUMINT has recruited officers as spies and informants to gather information from human sources on terrorist activities and operations, who finance and support them and where they find sanctuary (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018).

The professional officers who are recruited as spies or informants are members of the following specialties:

Operations Support

Officers involved in this specialty are tasked with managing, guiding, and overseeing HUMINT collection operations carried out by clandestine and overt HUMINT collectors inside and outside the US. The officers assist in HUMINT operations through providing operating directives, focusing on collection efforts and ensuring collector's responsiveness to CIA's national security information requirements (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). The officers in this specialty also oversee the preparedness the preparation of clandestine and overt HUMINT collectors and ensure the production of quality reporting by collaborating with the community.

Overt Collection

Officers involved in this specialty get information through open and legal means. These intelligence officers work secretly to be able to gather data from different sources. They usually have financial support to be used as a pretext when meeting individuals with valuable information (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). Sometimes these officers are disguised as diplomats or officers of the government. Overt information is gathered through liaison activities, intelligence exchange, interrogation, elicitation, and observation (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). These officers conduct worldwide HUMINT operations through Combatant Command, Secretary of Defense and national priorities.

Clandestine Collection

Officers involved in this specialty conduct and plan clandestine collection of HUMINT around the world and report about the type of intelligence information got from human sources. The officers gain skills and expertise in foreign languages and languages to manage sources with vital information during their mission (Criminal Investigation Agency, 2018). Therefore, this specialty needs people with sound judgment, ability to manage projects and highly developed interpersonal skills.

Section 3 - Operations and Activities

Concisely describe a scenario in which your organization will execute a specific HUMINT operation from beginning to completion.

Any HUMINT operation requires five phases:

Planning and Preparation: The HUMINT officer or collector would carry out research and operational planning regardless of the methodology used as long as the methodology is systematic and carefully prepared (U. S Army, 2006). The preparation will focus on a specific mission, a particular region in the world and use particular collection requirements.

Approach: The HUMINT officer or collector would establish the conditions of control and rapport to facilitate information collection and cooperation of the source. The approach used will vary based on the identity of the source, the time available, position, personality, the status of the source and the experience of the HUMINT officer or collector (U. S Army, 2006).

Questioning: The questioning phase involves debriefing or interrogation using good questioning techniques to allow the collector to get pertinent and accurate information. It also allows the collector to gather the maximum amount of data in less time and ascertain source veracity (U. S Army, 2006).

Termination: The HUMINT collector can terminate the questioning of the source if it is prudent or necessary. The reasons for termination maybe because the source is uncooperative, the objective cannot be met, the collection objectives have been met, the collector lose control or fail to maintain rapport with the source (U. S Army, 2006).

Reporting: This is the final and the most critical phase of HUMINT collection. The collected information must be reported accurately, in the correct format and promptly (U. S Army, 2006). The information cannot become be part of the intelligence product if it influences operational decisions.

Explain the variou...

Cite this page

Human Intelligence Essay Sample. (2022, May 02). Retrieved from

Request Removal

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the SpeedyPaper website, please click below to request its removal:

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism