Mitigating Key Intelligence Gaps in Colombian War on Terrorism   [open pdf - 107KB]

"Successfully transitioning from a war on drugs to a war on terrorism in Colombia is a national security concern for the United States and poses significant operational readiness challenges for USSOUTHCOM. The enemy is well funded and growing in capability. Drug trafficking, arms purchases, and distribution of cocaine continue, as does the terror threat to U.S. interests and its citizens. The pursuit of operations of mutual interest to nations of the region will require intelligence information interoperability among forces and allies. To successfully assist the current Colombian government and others in defeating this narcoterrorist threat, a range of intelligence is needed. This information should be timely, detailed and sharable with both Colombia and its neighbors. Today, intelligence gaps are a direct result of a lack of this type information and as a result, intelligence used to formulate operational planning assumptions in the Colombian area is grossly inadequate. Geospatial intelligence can be used to help mitigate the current intelligence gaps associated with our lack of knowledge about narco-terrorist groups in Colombia and, providing the foundation from which intelligence and other operational readiness challenges can be mitigated, will be a key force multiplier. Commercial satellite imagery is a way to meet objectives of more, timely, and current geospatial intelligence. This intelligence information will enable a situational awareness of the battlefield environment previously unknown to the USSOUTHCOM joint commander and can be provided in an unclassified venue when required for sharing between coalition partners."

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