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HTST 489
John Ferris

Sept 30 HTST489 Last day: Non sovereign competitions. Intelligence within a state bound by a rule of law. Very different from those that states undertake against each other. When dealing with these internal competitions, there is sovereign restraint and self-restraint. If you have a sovereign who is weak, the rules may not even be there. What MI5 can do in Britain is different from what CSIS can do in Canada. Legal regimes affect Intelligence. Sovereign Competitions Less complex. Power politics, war, simpler recourse to a set of rules that can't easily be broken. If you're at war with someone, you can play war any way you like, restrict your use of force, avoid collateral damage, play quite nicely. On the other hand, if you're up against an enemy who's ruthless and willing to accept heavier casualities, either you lose or you respond. Room for less fine distinctions than is true in business, politics, economics at home. Two main categories: Power politics and various types of war. Power politics involves relations between states short of direct use of force. Can involve a threat of force, show of force, or statement that one has force to use. Deterrence. Coercion meaning I want you to do something and if you don't I'll beat you up.Areas where force plays a role, but not the same as going to war. Power politics involves a high level of cooperation. Behaviour between liberal states in the past century and a half, liberal states interacting with other liberal states have been unwilling to use force directly to achieve aims. Intelligence can shape any action in power politics, whether cooperative or competitive. Intelligence can show you you have common interests, gives assurances no one is betraying rules of cooperation, and thus is valuable to it. If you are involved in a bargain or a treaty, what you need to know is what the others are determined to get and will not compromise on – their bottom line – and how far you can push them to a bottom line or what they will compromise on. Imagine you're playing cards and you can see the other players hands.Limited number of players with limited number of actions – limited number of possibilities. Intelligence can narrow it down, important with one priviso – if the other side isn't willing to budge on a deal breaker issue, Intelligence will just tell you you're nto going to get anywhere. Smart diplomat chooses where they will win and where they will lose, what they'll compromise on. Sometimes the tradeoffs you have to make mean you're not getting what you imagined. Intelligence may lead you accidentally or deliberately to giving the other side what you want. If intelligence shows you can get gains if you offer them xyz, then maybe intelligencce is leading you to give them what they want too. How can intelligence help you understand long term policy? Here we have to bear in mind strengths and weakness simulatneously. If I can't figure out your order of battle or number of forces, i'm incompetent. Figuring out capabilities and quality of those forces is harder to do, but a good service can do it. Can I know what your policy is? Yes and no. Dealing with a decision making system coming from one person, only their decisions matter. Can you understand a decisionmaker like Hitler or Stalin through intelligence? The answer is no. Nuances: if you can intercept a direct communication from a head of state, you can get a sense of how they think and what they're after. Not commonly done. If you had a different idea of that person it'd change your mind. Even then, their public utterances can sound insane and stretch belief, including belief of analysts at times in history. Rational analysts looking at statements from USSR, for example. What you're looking for in intel and diplomacy you're looking for that one piece of intel that lets you know how a leader thinks, but that rarely happens.Analysts aren't mind readers. Most of the data you get is information rather than intelligence. Crisis and strategic surprise. Intelligence historically doesn't work here very well. Certain elements of intelligence and power politics where intel isn't helpful. Crises, whether planned or random.Any minor change can effect the decision making system when you're crunched for time. In normal diplomacy/strategy you have a lot of incoming material that's straightforward. In crises, far more messy. In strategic surprise, intel becomes problematic. Strategic surprise in peacetime is someone launching a surprise attack against you. Record for surprise attacks is the party launching it gets something out of the attack by you being caught offguard, and sometimes the effects are catastrophic. Pearl Harbour, German attack of Soviet Union, Egy
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