Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Intelligence Spending: Be Sure to Read the Fine Print

Mike McConnell, Director of National Intelligence, said on Oct. 28 that Fiscal 2008's intelligence budget was $47.5 billion. But a Baltimore Sun article admitted that this does not include tactical military intelligence. Ten years ago, the TIARA Project (Tactical Intelligence And Related Activities) totaled more than $10 billion. This means the full U.S. intelligence budget exceeds $60 billion.

Another Associated Press article stated that DOD agencies consume 80 percent, or about $37 billion of the total that does not include tactical. Since National Geospatial Intelligence Agency and Defense Intelligence Agency are less than $5 billion in size, this probably means the National Reconnaissance Office (nation's largest by budget) must be well above $10 billion, while the National Security Agency must be approaching, if not exceeding $10 billion. Feel safe yet?

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