DoD to Set Up Joint Intelligence Operations Centers Worldwide
By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, April 12, 2006 – The Defense Department is moving to establish
a worldwide group of joint intelligence organizations designed to rapidly gather,
interpret and act on information to better meet 21st-century military needs, senior
military officials said here today.
On April 3, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld issued a directive to establish
a Joint Intelligence Operations Center at DoD's Defense Intelligence Agency, at
each unified combatant command and at U.S. Forces Korea, Army Lt. Gen. William
G. Boykin, deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence and warfighting support,
told reporters at a news briefing.
"What we're trying to do is move towards 'operationalizing' intelligence,"
Boykin explained. This entails transforming military intelligence from being a
staff function into "both a staff function, when appropriate, and an operational
concept," he said.
Findings of Capitol Hill and DoD commissions and studies, including the latest
Quadrennial Defense Review, conducted since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the
United States recommended the department integrate and improve the processes it
uses to more rapidly gather, analyze and act on intelligence information, Boykin
One of the first changes DoD made to improve its intelligence structure, Boykin
said, was to establish the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence
in 2003, headed by Stephen A. Cambone.
Cambone then directed a study titled "Taking Stock of Defense Intelligence,"
which sought present and future warfighting requirements feedback from combatant
commanders and DoD's global intelligence community, Boykin said.
DoD also conducted a "Reform of Human Intelligence" study at about the
same time, Boykin said.
The two studies were combined into a single program in January 2004, called "Remodeling
Defense Intelligence." The JIOC concept came out of the RDI initiative, Boykin
A JIOC that's now operational in Baghdad will serve as a template for the other
new centers, Boykin said.
"We're getting nothing but positive feedback from Iraq," Boykin said.
That center uses a single-source analytical database system, he said, which saves
time during intelligence operations.
Analysts at the Iraq JIOC now accomplish tasks in minutes that would routinely
take hours to do at an old-style center, Boykin said.
Boykin said the JIOC system is structured to eliminate traditional chain-of-command
logjams to facilitate rapid cross-communications between analysts and intelligence
gatherers in the field, known as collectors.
"What we're trying to do is create a situation where the analyst is talking
to the collector, and there's no filter in the middle," Boykin said.
Collection managers work with analysts and collectors to maintain information
flows, set priorities and allocate resources, Boykin said.
Initiatives like JIOC are part of U.S. efforts "to continuously strive to
improve our intelligence system, whether that be in support of the president of
the United States, in support of our troops deployed around the world, or those
working here to protect the homeland," said Army Lt. Gen. Ronald L. Burgess
Jr., deputy director of national intelligence for customer outcomes at the National
The key goal is to achieve more integrated and better-focused intelligence activities
that are closely linked with actual operations, Burgess said.
"The JIOC concept gets us to that linkage that we need to see," the
Modern battlefields like Afghanistan and Iraq have highlighted the need for decentralized
intelligence activities that can rapidly assess information and then "react
to the fleeting opportunities that we have to get a target that is presented to
us," Burgess said.