Insights: Weapons Intelligence

Instant Terrorism Analysis

For most of the last 30 years, I have been an avid consumer of press reports of terrorist incidents.  Such reports are just part of the “open source” intelligence landscape and yesterday’s bomb explosion in Bangkok, is just another set of news stories in this long sad line.     Today those news stories are…

Historical Intelligence Databases

An absolute gem of 19th century espionage intrigue in Paris and the activities of the Tsarist intelligence agency the Okhrana.

Technical Intelligence and Radio Controlled Bombs

The title of this post may have drawn you here under false pretences. I’m not writing about classified Tech Int aspects of radio controlled IEDs. But, as ever, a little dive into history usually provides us with forgotten lessons. So this piece is about the TECHINT operations to defeat German WW2 guided bombs and early cruise missiles used to attack Allied shipping convoys. For those of you familiar with IED jammer technology and “CREW” and the modern TECHINT operations associated with that battle, I think you’ll get some deja vu! As ever, we tend to view the challenges of today through an odd prism, assuming we are the first to face such issues, not appreciating that the challenges we face have usually occurred in the past, if we look hard enough.

Rubber Intelligence and “tiebrapolnud”

This is another post in the series looking at statistical analysis and its surprisingly useful role in intelligence. You might find statistics unattractive as an area of study – I hope to change your mind if you are an intelligence analyst.  Once again I’m looking at WW2 historical experience, because the innovative processes utilised have…

Intelligence, Statistics and the German Tank

A good intelligence analyst needs a golf bag of skill sets. One of the slightly rarer ones is statistical analysis.  Quite often the data collected with regard to intelligence is incomplete. Statistics can be used to extrapolate from that incomplete data to come up with something useful. Statisticians are a funny breed and this overlap…

New Atlantis & an Early Vision of Technical Intelligence

Francis Bacon was a philosopher, politician, lawyer and scientist who lived between 1561 and 1626. At one stage he was clearly involved with the Elizabethan spymaster, Francis Walsingham. Bacon should be particularly remembered for the creation of the formal ‘scientific method’, the rigourous process by which all modern science should be dealt with. Isaac Newton…

Interpreting scenes of crime – new developments at IMSL

One of the pot-boiler projects within the IMSL Intelligence Laboratory is related to a very interesting concept and I want to expose a little of it here. The project is looking at the context of a crime scene, a terrorist incident or other event from a multi-layered geographic and tactical context. This is quite a…

How many lumps of sugar with your missiles, sir?

The story coming out of the Panama Canal is getting just a little attention for now. Once people work out what these objects are and why they are going from A to B, this story will be huge. It has limited coverage at the moment because it’s not yet clear but by golly, this could…

V2 Intelligence Operations

A good short (6 minute) documentary here about the aerial photography based intelligence about the V weapons in WW2. Well worth a watch.  Related to this and mentioned in the film was Constance Babington-Smith. I blogged about a related operation, here, and the remarkable technical intelligence operation to recover a V2 from Poland. Further to that,…

Truth, Conspiracy or Confusion?

A small number of recent incidents have highlighted the challenges to the OSINT analyst when dealing with incidents where several version of the truth (and lies) might present themselves without clarity. Let me define three incidents to explain the challenges and dilemmas. 1. On 1 November 2012 a massive explosion occurred in Riyadh, the capital…

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