July 19th, 2010
07:29 AM ET
4 years ago

Report: U.S. intelligence community inefficient, unmanageable

Washington (CNN) – The Sept. 11, 2001, attacks have created an intelligence community so large and unwieldy that it's unmanageable and inefficient - and no one knows how much it costs, according to a two-year-long investigation by the Washington Post.






Ahead of the publication, many in the intelligence community worried that the stories would disclose too much information about contractors and the classified tasks they handle.

The Post article that appeared in Monday's edition says its investigation uncovered "a Top Secret America hidden from public view and lacking in thorough oversight. After nine years of unprecedented spending and growth, the result is that the system put in place to keep the United States safe is so massive that its effectiveness is impossible to determine."

The Post investigation found that "33 building complexes for top-secret intelligence work are under construction or have been built since September 2001," or the equivalent of nearly three Pentagons.

Full story


Filed under: Intelligence
soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. Larry

    How many billions are going to Haliburton for security in this country, for work they tend not to do?

    July 19, 2010 08:03 am at 8:03 am |
  2. jp,michigan

    Once again big government at its best, ineffective and does not protect the American people. Larger does not make it better! This Administration and its motley crude, believes it what it is doing , which is not fulfilling the tasks needed in protecting its citizens. Example: #1 the boarders, #2 when Labor Sect. tell illegal to call if their pay is not adequate, we will make sure it is, #3 continue to fabricate the number of jobs saved or started.

    July 19, 2010 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
  3. g

    another republican mess- follow the money

    July 19, 2010 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  4. Keith in Austin

    Seemingly America is perilously on the edge of another terrorist attack and our Government is clueless.

    The single-most important role of government is to protect the People.

    Meanwhile, our fearless leader is more focused on taking over banks, auto industry, healthcare, oil industry and shortly the energy industry. Our borders remain like a sieve while Bozo is searching for his next tee time while still blaming the mess he's created on George Bush!

    July 19, 2010 08:44 am at 8:44 am |
  5. WARNING, AMERICA WAKE UP

    If we'd had our missile defense system still in place this could have never happened in the first place. REPLACE NORAD AND STOP THIS BULL CRAP. At least with it in place the only thing that would have been lost was the planes with their passengers. That's would be sad enough but thousands could have been save. IT'S A SHAME THAT THE U.S. OUTSMARTS THEMSELVES.

    July 19, 2010 08:56 am at 8:56 am |
  6. btannerski

    Yet another fine legacy of George W. Bush.

    And he represents a party who claimis that it is for small government.

    Laughable....and very sad.

    July 19, 2010 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  7. kd

    Yet another Bush fear-driven legacy. We're suffocating under the messes that Bush created and left.

    July 19, 2010 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  8. American Patriot - a "real" tea partier

    But we already knew that it was inefficient and unmanageable. 9/11 pretty much showcased that point and things haven't gotten any better.

    July 19, 2010 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  9. Joan

    Obviously after 911 there was a need to dramatically change and enlarge the securtiy mechanisms to try and divert another catastrophe. That was done nine years ago and just now the Post is writing an article which criticizes the whole organization and makes it look enept. Why are they writing this now and not six or seven years ago? Criticizing the security measures followed by your country can certainly enbolden the enemy and make them question how safe your country really is. This was irresponsible reporting and I hope they haven't put your country at risk just to get a story.

    July 19, 2010 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  10. jim

    Whatever happpened to the phrase"lean mean fighting machine"?We need some new leaders that are willing to do what is necessary to put our country first !!!!

    July 19, 2010 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  11. Rick McDaniel

    The world has become a very despicable place, and trying to keep up with all of the problems and dangers that today's world inflicts upon us, is a very difficult job to do.

    July 19, 2010 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  12. mike

    intelligence community is government welfare for the simple fact that as long as there is public fear and not solid solutions that will change are
    mine set on the way we look at other countries we will always be sold the idea that they are out to get us but if that were the case how come for years during the cold war with Russia we never had this problem it
    was always the fear that Russians were out to get us and now it is
    terrorists what will be next mickey mouse

    July 19, 2010 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  13. Dale

    Spend on intelligence now, or spend orders of magnitude more on war later.

    July 19, 2010 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  14. Limbaugh is a liberal

    And I'm sure it's all Obama's fault that he overbloated government with inefficient bureaucrats since 2001... oh wait, all of that was under Bush Jr.'s watch. Then it must have been absolutely the right thing to do and anyone questioning the intelligence community is a terrorist sympathizer!

    July 19, 2010 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  15. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    We, as a country, are comparatively new to being attacked in our own soil by a foreign entity. There are, however, many other countries around the globe to whom we could turn for advise as to how to streamline the out-of control agency we currently have in place now. Our current agency was probably haphazardly put together without benefit of a complete thought process, as a result of yet another knee-jerk reaction by Shrub & Co.

    Might I suggest we turn to Spain for assistance.

    July 19, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  16. La Piovra

    Having read the Washington Post account, I suggest each of these agencies needs to spy on itself, in order to find out what it's doing.

    July 19, 2010 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  17. Josiah

    Yet another thing that Bush & Co. set in motion – it will take years for all that they have done to come to light – as usual a Republican presidency is used to expand Big Business, Big Government, steal away liberties from citizens & bankrupt America in the process.

    July 19, 2010 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  18. Bertina

    Republicans are lining up to blame Obama.

    July 19, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  19. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    Too many chiefs and not enough Indians our country can never be too secure but with chiefs conflicting with each other we dont win wars just ask the Indians .

    July 19, 2010 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  20. GI Joe

    The Republicans have been and are so paranoid that this comes as no surprise.

    Fear, hate, misinformation - spread like wildfire for the last 10 years has made for some awful politics in this country.

    July 19, 2010 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  21. Four and The Door

    The Washington Post is doing Al Qaeda's investigative work for them. How convenient for the terrorists. I don't see much benefit to anyone else.

    July 19, 2010 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  22. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    Think that any media that uncovers top secret information and then reveals it to the public is a danger to our national security and are no better then traitors .

    July 19, 2010 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  23. waheid

    More is not necessarily better and bigger is almost never more efficient. Knowing the identity and location of every foreign national in the U.S. does not enable the government to spot the foreign national who is plotting the next terrorist act. There comes a point where the sheer volume of facts makes any meaningful analysis of those facts nearly impossible. Similarly, making an organization – and especially a government organization – bigger on the mistaken belief that bigger is more efficient usually has the opposite effect. A prime example is the Dept. of Homeland Security, which probably is the most inefficient government bureauocracy ever invented. Another example is the Dept. of Defense, which was supposed to eliminate inefficiencies of a separate Army, Navy, and Air Force. There comes a point where an organization becomes so large and so complicated that the so-called managers at the top are completely isolated from the people at the bottom of the organization, who tend to live in their own world, solving their problems as best they can. With regard to our intelligence agencies, we have passed that point a long time ago.

    July 19, 2010 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  24. sammieb51

    The intelligence community was further distracted by the creation of Homeland Security at the cost of $140 BIllion – not paid for – to the taxpayers. Thank you George Bush.

    July 19, 2010 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  25. Give me an R!

    Obama, Pelosi and Holder have already neutered the agency with attacks, lies and threats. What do you expect?

    July 19, 2010 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
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