Vernon Loeb

H - I


Loeb,Vernon. "Has the U.S. Blunted Bin Laden? Yes and No, Terrorist Fighters Say, Describing an Invisible War." Washington Post, 17 Feb. 1999, A4. "U.S. Intelligence Claims Progress against bin Laden." Washington Post National Weekly Edition, 22 Feb. 1999, 16-17.

"Six months after Osama bin Laden allegedly masterminded the truck bombing of two U.S. embassies in east Africa, senior U.S. officials say they have disrupted planned operations by his followers and stayed one step ahead of new threats through aggressive intelligence-gathering and cooperation with foreign authorities."


Loeb, Vernon. "Hobbyists Track Spies in the Sky." Washington Post, 20 Feb. 1999, A1. []

"As Operation Desert Fox unfolded in December and the Pentagon released reconnaissance photographs taken from space of destroyed Iraqi targets, retired CIA scientist Allen Thomson sat at his home computer in El Paso and produced a schedule of classified U.S. satellite overpasses of Baghdad from the hour the bombing began. Thomson was not trying to alert Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, but to underscore a point he has been making for years about supersecret U.S. spy satellites: They aren't so secret anymore."


Loeb, Vernon. "Independent Sept. 11 Commission Gaining Ground." Washington Post, 29 Jul. 2002. []

The U.S. House has added an amendment to the FY 2003 intelligence authorization bill to "create an independent commission to investigate possible Sept. 11 intelligence failures." This action seemed to be "a vote of no confidence in the House and Senate intelligence committees, which have postponed public hearings in their own probe and already concluded that the intelligence agencies could not have averted the terrorist attacks."


Loeb, Vernon. "Intelligence Budget Can Be Secret, Judge Rules." Washington Post, 23 Nov. 1999, A4. []

In an opinion dated 12 November 1999, "U.S. District Court Judge Thomas F. Hogan dismissed a lawsuit filed by the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) under the Freedom of Information Act, saying the director of central intelligence has broad power 'to protect the secrecy and integrity of the intelligence process.'" The opinion was made public on 22 November 1999.


Loeb, Vernon. "IntelligenCIA: Inside Information." Washington Post, 4 Oct. 1999. [http://]

Frank Anderson, former chief of the CIA's Near East Division, "told the Center for Policy Analysis on Palestine in a September speech" that "the agency's role in the Middle East peace process has likely diminished since the election of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak but is 'certainly not going to go away' as Israel and the Palestinian Authority try to complete a land-for-peace accord."


Loeb, Vernon. "IntelligenCIA: Inside Information." Washington Post, 31 Oct. 1999. [http://]

"Two lawmakers from opposite ends of the intelligence spectrum, Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Porter J. Goss (R-Fla.), introduced legislation last week that would create a nine-member board to oversee the declassification of historical government documents 'of extraordinary public interest.'"


Loeb, Vernon. "IntelligenCIA: Inside Information." Washington Post, 31 Oct. 1999. [http://]

According to NIMA officials, the agency is "working to produce a data base of high-resolution satellite imagery of 25 percent of the earth's land mass by the end of Fiscal 2005, thanks in part to the availability of high-resolution commercial imagery from Space Imaging Inc.'s recently launched IKONOS satellite. The stored imagery -- detailed enough to show white lines on a city street -- will be geo-referenced and suitable for targeting, meaning exact coordinates can be derived for anything depicted."


Loeb, Vernon. "IntelligenCIA: Inside Information." Washington Post, 10 Jan. 2000. [http://]

Tenet and others comment on changes at the CIA.

[CIA/00s/00; CIA/DCIs/Tenet]

Loeb, Vernon. "IntelligenCIA: Portrait of a Pessimist." Washington Post, 6 Mar. 2000. []

This is a report on a "recent lecture at the Smithsonian" by HPSCI staff director John Millis. He "is strikingly pessimistic about the future of America's spy agencies.... The problem ... begins at the top": the DCI has far too little authority. The Pentagon controls more than 85 percent of the intelligence community.... But even if the DCI had the power he needs,... it is not clear better management would help all that much in a high-tech world where technology, paradoxically enough, has suddenly become enemy number one.

"Signals intelligence ...'is in a crisis,' threatened by hard-to-decode digital cell phone traffic, hard-to-tap fiber optic cable and proliferating encryption software that, for all intents and purposes, is impossible to break. At the same time, America's near monopoly on high-resolution satellite imagery is about to end.... All of these changes, meanwhile, are taking place in a post-Cold War environment in which intelligence targets -- rogue states, weapons proliferation, terrorists and narco-traffickers -- have multiplied and become harder than ever to penetrate....

"Such an environment, Millis said, puts a premium on ... [h]aving an effective clandestine service ... [which] enables the president to make effective use of covert action, from paramilitary operations to maneuvers designed to influence another country's political system.... 'We must have the capability of influencing foreign media,' Millis said. 'But we almost have totally gotten out of that business. It's ridiculous for [us] alone out of all the major nations in the world' to have nothing in the covert action tool box between 'a feckless demarche and calling in the bombers...'

"The one bright spot Millis noted is counterintelligence ... [where] real improvement has come within the intelligence community through the cooperative efforts of the CIA and the FBI."


Loeb, Vernon. "IntelligenCIA: Rebuilding Clandestine Operations." Washington Post, 20 Sep. 1999. []

DDO James L. "Pavitt, 53, a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Missouri," served tours "in Austria (1976-1978), Germany (1978-1980), Malaysia (1980-1983) and Luxembourg (1983-86).... When he first returned from overseas, Pavitt became special assistant" to then DDO Richard Stolz. In 1990, he was detailed "to the National Security Council as director for intelligence programs and became special assistant to the president for national security affairs during the final year of the Bush administration in 1992. He then went back to Langley and became deputy director for operations at the CIA's Nonproliferation Center, where he served until he was asked to start up a counterproliferation division inside the DO in 1995. From there, he became [DDO Jack] Downing's deputy two years ago before [DCI George] Tenet named him DDO in August" 1999.

[CIA/90s/99/Gen; CIA/C&C/DO]

Loeb, Vernon. "IntelligenCIA: Wanting the SR-71 Blackbird to Soar Once Again." Washington Post, 26 Jun. 2000. []

Rep. Howard P. "Buck" McKeon (R-CA), "whose district includes Lockheed Martin's legendary Skunk Works, where the SR-71 and the U-2 were secretly designed, can't quite give up the idea of a comeback" for the SR-71 Blackbird. He tried in 1997 and again last year to reactivate the legendary plane.

Clark comment: If a U.S. Congressman cannot figure out why the Air Force maintains such a high level of antipathy to this aircraft, having virtually refused to use it, then it remains unlikely that those among us unknowledgeable about matters aviation, yet convinced of the rationality of having a plane such as the SR-71 in our national security arsenal, can possibly understand what is going on here.


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