29 Apr 2022

Duyane Norman on Disrupting the CIA to Deal with Emerging Threats

Duyane Norman spent nearly 30 years in the CIA with three Chief of Station and multiple other tours in a variety of interesting geographies and also had a focus on technology issues serving as Deputy Director of the Office of Technical Service within CIA’s Directorate of Science and Technology, and as a member of the CIA Counterterrorism Center’s Incident Response Team. Duyane established a reputation as an innovator and a disruptor looking for ways for the intelligence services to flourish given the fast pace of technological change and the dynamic threats emerging on the global landscape. In this OODAcast we discuss his career in the CIA, how the agency must adapt over time, and the role disruptive technology will play in the geopolitical landscape. We also talk about his Station of the Future project and how that can serve as a roadmap for future innovation.

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01 Apr 2022

Jim Lawler on the Art of Espionage and the Perfect Intelligence Operation

In this OODAcast, we talk with Jim Lawler who is a Senior Partner at MDO Group, which provides HUMINT training to the Intelligence Community and the commercial sector focused on WMD, CI, technical and cyber issues. Mr. Lawler is a noted speaker on the Insider Threat in government and industry. Prior to this, Mr. Lawler served for 25 years as a CIA operations officer in various international posts and as Chief of the Counterproliferation Division’s Special Activities Unit.  We talk with Jim about his career in intelligence and national security, his views on the current threats including some of his fictionalized accounts in his novels, and his most notable intelligence operation; the A.Q. Khan nuclear takedown.

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10 Mar 2022

The Putin Profile: Takeaways from our Interview with a CIA, FBI, and Military Psychologist

Today we recorded an OODAcast with long time colleague Dr. Scott Shumate who has 33 years of national security experience with both the Central Intelligence Agency as an undercover operations officer and the Department of Defense with the Counterintelligence Field Activity as a Senior Executive level director of Behavioral Science support to the departments investigative and counterintelligence units.

Here are the major takeaways from the interview to inform your perspective.

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09 Mar 2022

Intelligence Gathering Tools and Analysis, Strategic Thinking and Uncertainty

We continue our effort to underscore certain patterns and themes found throughout the OODAcast library of over 80 conversations with leaders and decision-makers, on topics such as leadership, empowering a team, finding the right people, clear decision-making while operating in a low information environment, the qualities and best practices of a true leader,  the future of intelligence, the future of cyber threats and cyber espionage and strategic action.

In May of 2020, OODA CTO Bob Gourley had an OODAcast conversation with Carmen Medina, who served 32 years in senior positions at the Central Intelligence Agency, most of which focused on one of the hardest tasks in the community, that of analysis. Bob and Carmen discuss information-gathering and intelligence tools, uncertainty, and decision-making.  The conversation is also interesting as a time capsule from the May 2020 timeframe of the pandemic:  before the vaccine, before variant surges, before the 900,000 plus death toll.  It is interesting to read now  – with the knowledge of how the uncertainty at the time Bob and Carmen spoke has now played out.

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20 Dec 2021

OODA Salon 20 December 2021: Digital Innovation and Threats, A discussion with Deputy Director of CIA for Innovation Jennifer Ewbank

This 20 Dec 2021 OODA Salon features a discussion with Jennifer Ewbank, Deputy Director of CIA for Digital Innovation.

Her office is responsible for current and future activities associated with both technologies and business processes around digital innovation, a topic which touches every aspect of agency missions. This includes activities in domains like Cloud, IT, Cyber Operations, Cybersecurity, Data Policy, Artificial Intelligence and Open Source. We will discuss the nature of the modern digital threat environment, things that American C-Suite leaders should know regarding CIA missions and how to serve them, and things we should all know about how to survive and thrive in the tech enabled world.

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24 Sep 2021

Inman’s Rules: The Enduring Principles of Operational Intelligence

Admiral Bobby Ray Inman retired from the US Navy in 1982. But his influence endures. His principles, which he codified into a list still exchanged among intelligence community leaders today, is now known as Inman’s Rules. In this OODAcast interview of Admiral Inman we review these rules, seeking insights into how they can be applied to business and government intelligence and operations today.

Consider his 31 rules and how they will apply to your organization.

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11 Sep 2021

Decision-Making Inside the CIA Counterterrorism Center Before, During and After 9/11

We started the OODAcast as a way of highlighting insights and lessons learned from leaders and decision-makers in the OODA Network including former intelligence community leaders and operators. Themes emerge throughout these interviews on topics such as how clearly the intelligence community warned of the pending attacks, the early preparedness of a response by the intelligence community, the role the agency played in the success of the early stages of the campaign in Afghanistan, leadership in a crisis, empowering your team and finding the right people to execute on a plan, clear decision-making while operating in a low information environment, situational awareness and the qualities and best practices of a true leader.  In this second part of the series, we draw on perspectives from former CIA Counterterrorism Center (CTC) Director Cofer Black and former CIA CTC Director of Operations Ric Prado.

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10 Sep 2021

A CIA Officer and Delta Force Operator Share Perspectives on 9/11

We started the OODAcast as a way of highlighting insights and lessons learned from leaders and decision-makers in the OODA Network including former intelligence community leaders and operators. Themes emerge throughout these interviews on topics such as how clearly the intelligence community warned of the pending attacks, the early preparedness of a response by the intelligence community, the role the agency played in the success of the early stages of the campaign in Afghanistan, leadership in a crisis, empowering your team and finding the right people to execute on a plan, clear decision-making while operating in a low information environment, situational awareness and the qualities and best practices of a true leader.  In this article we draw on perspectives from former CIA Officer and Congressman Will Hurd and former CIA and Delta Force operator Gary Harrington.

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26 Aug 2021

CIA, U.S. Troops Conduct Missions Outside Kabul Airport to Extract Americans, Afghan Allies

According to new reports, the Central Intelligence Agency and the US military are conducting extraction operations to evacuate Americans outside of the Kabul airport with just days remaining before the August 31 operation deadline. US forces are using ground troops and helicopters to conduct the missions. The clandestine operations to

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02 Jul 2021

Cofer Black on Leadership Lessons Learned and Speaking Truth to Power

In this OODAcast, we talk with renowned counter-terrorism expert and career clandestine services professional Cofer Black. Cofer is best known for having been the Director of the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center on 9/11 and having been part of the intelligence community warning about the near-term threat of terrorism in the United States prior to the attacks. However, his pedigree in counterterrorism issues was well established with a distinguished career in the field in high-risk areas and operations.

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