Inside The POTUS’s Daily Intelligence Briefing: DNI Moves With Care – To Tablets

Inside The POTUS’ Daily Intelligence Briefing: DNI Moves With Care – To Tablets

Colin Clark had an online article in yesterday’s, April 21, 2014,, with the title above. The traditional picture we envision in our minds with respect to a POTUS in the oval office managing a crisis — typically would have had the POTUS on the phone, and/or with briefing books to provide the latest intelligence. Mr. Clark notes that historically accurate vision is likely to change in the coming months and years — as secure I-Pads, capable of displaying classified articles and videos — replaces these outdated, traditional means.

“At the end of last week’s GEOINT conference in Tampa, Florida last week (the world’s largest intelligence conference), Robert Cardillo, the Deputy Director for Integration — within the Office of the Director for National Intelligence — Mr. Cardillo offered a rare glimpse inside the President’s Daily Intelligence Brief (PDB), and how the Intelligence Community (IC) continues to grapple with the problem of how to tell the POTUS what he needs to know, as well as deciding what he needs to know.” That has always been an issue in the IC. The new dynamic is social media and the fact that information flow via the Internet/Worldwide Web is much faster than traditional IC methods of writing and staffing intelligence articles.

Mr. Clark writes that “the White House and the POTUS initially pushed, quite forcefully, to get the PDB delivered digitally, early on in his first term in office. But, this kind of fundamental change comes slowly in the IC and it is not s surprise that this initiative has been slow and cumbersome to implement. “Almost two years ago,” Mr. Clark noted that he wrote about the “efforts to digitize the PDB, as well as giving the POTUS SmartPhones or Tablets, from which he could both push and pull information.

It is inevitable that the IC must go to these faster methods of dissemination of intelligence products. Encryption and failsafe procedures should be in place — in case one of these devices — connected to the POTUS, NSC, etc. are lost, or in some other way compromised. But, the days of staffing and bureaucratic hurdles to overcome before being disseminated are over. V/R, RCP

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