Reforming Intelligence: The Passage of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act   [open pdf - 13MB]

This report analyzes the history behind the passing of the 2004 Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act. "The United States Government seized its biggest opportunity to restructure the Intelligence Community in almost 60 years by passing the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004. Proponents of the new act believed that only significant reform could address problems such as the inability of the Intelligence Community (IC) to detect and prevent the attacks on 11 September 2001 or to assess accurately Iraq's weapons of mass destruction (WMD) program. The new act created a Director of National Intelligence (DNI) to oversee the community's 15 components, at the time, and sought to settle debates that had raged in Washington for decades. But the shock of 9/11 and the war in Iraq finally created a unique sense of urgency. 'We have come together with a unity of purpose because our nation demands it,' stated the preface to the '9/11 Commission Report,' and instant best seller when released in July 2004. That landmark report set in motion the events that led to the passage of the act and served as a capstone to events of the precious three years--stalled bills on Capitol Hill, congressional inquiries, a close presidential election, blue-ribbon inquiries, and an active public discourse. Commission members and legislation supporters hoped that major intelligence reform would address institutional obstacles that had complicated the IC's struggles to adapt to new technologies and a changing national security environment. The new act would redraw boundaries between foreign and domestic intelligence, set new rules for intelligence and law enforcement, enhance the interplay between civilian and military intelligence, correct the shortfall in information sharing, and meet the needs of traditional and emergent intelligence functions. The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (IRTPA), however, almost never happened. Here is the story of how it did."

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Office of the Director of National Intelligence: http://www.odni.gov/
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