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Info Sharing (Update)

Pakistan’s claims that it does not have terrorist training camps in its territory is being strongly contested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which has told a US court that satellite pictures pointed towards such a camp.

In the trial of 23-year-old Pakistani American Hamid Hayat, who has been accused of terrorism-related charges, Defense Intelligence Agency’s expert Eric Benn has stated that there was about 70 per cent ‘probability’ that the satellite images pointed to a terrorist training camp in near Balakot in northeast Pakistan. [emphasis mine]

After the fact, but then a little something is better than a lot of nothing . . . and we are talking about the government.


A.M. sounds off:

Has this ever happened before? Do intel analysts need to worry about being called to testify? Does that not open you up to a lot of cross examination and pummeling from defense during voir dire?  

I would imagine that during selected parts of previous espionage trials analysts would have been called to testify or deliver affidavits to the court for things like damage assessments, but I’m not aware of any cases like this. I think the last time a serving analyst presented PHOTINT material was John Hughes, who went on TV back in the 60s to present a briefing on what the Cubans were up to during the missile crisis (he got a library named after him). More recently there was this briefing by a senior DIA officer.

Unless the defense had another analyst with similar skills on his side of the aisle, I’m not sure how he’d be able to question Eric’s quals. Not a lot of guys on the inside or out lining up to testify in defense of an alleged terrorist, but in the interest of justice, you never know.

Michael Tanji

Michael Tanji

Michael Tanji spent nearly 20 years in the US intelligence community. Trained in both SIGINT and HUMINT disciplines he has worked at the Defense Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, and the National Reconnaissance Office. At various points in his career he served as an expert in information warfare, computer network operations, computer forensics, and indications and warning. A veteran of the US Army, Michael has served in both strategic and tactical assignments in the Pacific Theater, the Balkans, and the Middle East.