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Column: The FBI’s Struggle to Transform Into an Intelligence Agency

Henry Crumpton served as U.S. coordinator for counterterrorism from 2005 to 2007.

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Henry Crumpton/ charlie rose show

 
By AMB. HENRY A. CRUMPTON
Politico

Since the Sept. 11 attacks, the FBI, the world’s leading law enforcement agency, has labored to transform itself into an intelligence organization — while preserving its policing pre-eminence. This challenge has proved difficult.

There are major cultural and structural differences between law enforcement and intelligence. I saw how different when I was a senior CIA officer on loan to the FBI, as the deputy chief of the International Terrorism Operations Section from 1998 to 1999. I retired from government service — but recent conversations with knowledgeable government officials suggest that this remains true today.

The FBI is still measuring success, according to one well-informed confidant, based on arrests and criminal convictions — not on the value of intelligence collected and disseminated to its customers.

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