Earlier this month we learned that the Obama administration is significantly expanding the number of covert Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) agents overseas. From just a few hundred DIA agents overseas today, the administration intends to eventually deploy some 1,600 covert agents. The nature of their work will also shift, away from intelligence collection and more toward covert actions. This move signals a major change in how the administration intends to conduct military and paramilitary operations overseas. Unfortunately, it is not a shift toward peace, but rather to an even more deadly and disturbing phase in the “war on terror.”
Surely attacks on foreign countries will increase as a result of this move, but more and more the strikes will take place under cover of darkness and outside the knowledge of Congress or the American people. The move also represents a further blurring of the lines between the military and intelligence services, with the CIA becoming more like a secret military unto itself. This is a very troubling development.
In 2010, I said in a speech that there had been a CIA coup in this country. The CIA runs the military and the drone program, and they are in drug trafficking. The CIA is a secretive government all on its own. With this new expanded Defense Intelligence Agency presence overseas it will be even worse. Because the DIA is operationally under control of the Pentagon, direct congressional oversight of the program will be more difficult. Perhaps this is as intended. The CIA will be training the DIA in its facilities to conduct operations overseas. Much of this will include developing targeting data for the president’s expanding drone warfare program.