Walter Pincus

Sp - Sz


Pincus, Walter. "Spy Agencies Faulted for Missing Indian Tests." Washington Post, 3 Jun. 1998, A18.

U.S. "intelligence agencies and policymakers failed to forecast India's nuclear explosions last month in large part because of a 'mind-set' that led officials to conclude that a new government in Delhi would not risk the consequences of fulfilling a campaign promise to conduct tests, the head of a CIA inquiry said [on 2 June 1998].

"Retired Adm. David E. Jeremiah told a news conference at CIA headquarters that the country's spy agencies should have ordered 'increased coverage' of India after the hard-line Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power in March. Instead, he said, both intelligence officials and policymakers 'acted as if the BJP would behave as we behave' and would avoid provoking a confrontation....

"In closed-door sessions on Capitol Hill [on 2 June 1998], Jeremiah criticized in greater detail intelligence failures and weaknesses illustrated by the India failure, according to one congressional source. The source quoted Jeremiah as saying that the agencies' central management is 'not effective,' its analytic resources are 'stretched too thin,' technical collection by satellites is 'limited or poorly suited . . . and vulnerable to simple deception,' and human intelligence capacity 'is seriously limited'....

"Jeremiah told reporters ... that managers representing Tenet should be given greater control of the various collection operations that now are mostly run by Pentagon agencies. To provide better coordination, Jeremiah called on Tenet to unify collection operations. The various agencies cooperate, Jeremiah said, but they do not coordinate well."

See also, Carla Anne Robbins, "Failure to Predict India's Tests Is Tied to Systemwide Intelligence Breakdown," Wall Street Journal, 3 Jun. 1998, A8; and Tim Weiner, "C.I.A. Study Details Failures; Scouring of System Is Urged," New York Times, 3 Jun. 1998, A1.


Pincus, Walter. "Spy Agencies Warned of Iraq Resistance." Washington Post, 9 Sep. 2003, A1. []

According to administration and congressional sources, "U.S. intelligence agencies warned Bush administration policymakers before the war in Iraq that there would be significant armed opposition to a U.S.-led occupation.... The general tenor of the reports, according to a senior administration official familiar with the intelligence, was that the postwar period would be more 'problematic' than the war to overthrow Hussein.... Before the war, the CIA passed on intelligence that some members of Hussein's Republican Guard military units and his Baathist Party had plans to carry on resistance after the war, according to one senior intelligence official."


Pincus, Walter. "Spy Agency Defended by House Panel." Washington Post, 12 Aug 1994, A21.

Members of the House intelligence committee take issue with their Senate colleagues over the issue of notification regarding NRO's headquarters building project.


Pincus, Walter. "Spy Agency Hoards Secret $1 Billion; Satellite Managers Did Not Tell Supervisors of Classified 'Pot of Gold,' Hill Sources Say." Washington Post, 24 Sep. 1995, A1, A22. "The $1 Billion in the Spy Satellite Agency Cookie Jar." Washington Post National Weekly Edition, 2-8 Oct. 1995, 31.

Pincus, Walter. "The Spy Case That Just Keeps on Growing." Washington Post National Weekly Edition, 3-9 Oct. 1994, 31.

In the wake of Inspector General Hitz' report on the Ames case, DCI Woolsey "announced on Sept. 28 that he had disciplined five active and six retired senior agency officers, but no one was fired or demoted.... Woolsey's actions drew immediate criticism on Capitol Hill."


Pincus, Walter. "Spy Chief's Grasp Reaches Other Pockets; Senate Panel Hands DCI Budget Power in Pentagon." Washington Post, 25 Apr. 1996, A29.


Pincus, Walter. "Spy Satellites Are Under Scrutiny: Negroponte to Advise Congress on Funding New Systems." Washington Post, 16 Aug. 2005, A11. []

According to congressional and administration sources, DNI John D. Negroponte "is reviewing two multibillion-dollar spy satellite programs,... and will make recommendations on their future to House and Senate intelligence committees" in September 2005. Sources said that one of the systems under scrutiny "is a classified program to build the next generation of stealth satellites." The other program receiving attention "is the new generation of non-stealth space vehicles -- using optical, radar, listening and infrared-red capabilities -- known collectively as the Future Imagery Architecture (FIA)."


Pincus, Walter. "Spy Suspect Fired at Los Alamos Lab." Washington Post, 9 Mar. 1999, A1. []

On 8 March 1999, "Energy Secretary Bill Richardson fired [Wen Ho Lee,] a Los Alamos National Laboratory weapons designer ... who was under suspicion of handing nuclear secrets to China in the late 1980s."


Pincus, Walter. "The Spy vs. Spy Report." Washington Post National Weekly Edition, 26 Sep.-2 Oct. 1994, 33.

CIA Inspector General Frederick P. Hitz' report on the Ames spy case cites senior officers in the CIA's Office of Security and Directorate of Operations for failures to pay attention over the period that Ames spied for Moscow.

[CIA/90s/Ames Fallout]

Pincus, Walter. "The Spies Who Are Really Out in the Cold." Washington Post National Weekly Edition, 22-28 Jan. 1996, 18-19.

"[O]ne of the most sensitive debates in the U.S. intelligence community is whether to step up the overseas use of NOCs ["nonofficial cover" officers], not only by the CIA but also by the Pentagon's Defense Humint Service and the FBI, both of which also can work abroad under cover." Pincus quotes a former official for a host of problems associated with the use of NOCs: expense, control difficulties, support costs and complexities, and stress on the individual, among others.


Pincus, Walter. "Staff Director for Hill's Probe Into Terrorist Attacks Resigns." Washington Post, 30 Apr. 2002, A5. [http//]

L. Britt Snider, staff director for the joint House and Senate investigation into the 9/11 attacks, resigned on 26 April 2002. See also, James Risen, "Reason Cited for Ousting of Terror Inquiry's Director: Staff Member's Security Problem Is Blamed," New York Times, 9 May 2002, A34.

[GenPostCW/00s/02/Congress; Terrorism/02/WTC]

Pincus, Walter. "Study Faults Bush's Emphasis On Daily Intelligence Brief." Washington Post, 15 Sep. 2009, A17. []

A study by the Brookings Institution, "The U.S. Intelligence Community and Foreign Policy: Getting Analysis Right," released on 15 September 2009, concludes that "[u]nder President George W. Bush, the President's Daily Brief ... rose to 'an unprecedented level of importance,' with negative consequences for the intelligence community." The study suggested that "focusing on producing PDB items that would draw favorable comment from Bush could have skewed 'topic selection and treatment in the analytic community.'"


Pincus, Walter. "Support for Intelligence Plan: Powell, Ridge Back One Director but Defer to Bush on Specifics." Washington Post, 14 Sep. 2004, A4. [}

Appearing before the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee on 13 September 2004, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell said "that creating a new national intelligence director could guard against the type of faulty intelligence that led him to tell the United Nations in February 2003 that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction.... In testimony, [both] Powell and Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge expressed support for appointment of a national intelligence chief, though each said there are still details to be worked out in the approach that will be supported by Bush."


Pincus, Walter. "Suspect in Probe of China Atomic Spying Fails Polygraph." Washington Post, 7 Mar. 1999, A19. []

"A Taiwan-born American scientist, who is suspected of turning over to China design information about a key U.S. nuclear missile warhead 10 years ago, failed a polygraph test last month, according to administration sources."


Return to Pincus Table of Contents