Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Intelligence Quotient

Britain, in response to the WOT, has taken a dramatic move. To respond to the vast needs for human intelligence and special forces, they've developed their own new intelligence service explicitly for counterterrorism purposes. The new unit will serve alongside the Special Air Service and receive the same training as Britain's most elite sets of spies and special forces. This new unit, the Special Reconnaissance Regiment, will incorporate all the accumulated wisdom and practice of those dealing with terrorists in Northern Ireland and elsewhere. This is the right way to go, and not just from the country who brought us James Bond and the drama "MI-5".

Terrorists require special institutional capacity. No matter how many nonfunctional Strykers and Virginia-class Submarines Donald Rumsfeld wants to build, the key to winning is human intelligence and cloak and dagger stuff. If we in America want to see a faster, lighter force, then we should be more heavily invested in Special Forces, Recon, and Intelligence, not in yet more super stealth fighter planes that probably won't work ever. This British path is one that yields knowledge and through covert action a minimalization of civilian casualties.