NATIONAL SECURITY

10

NATIONALSECURITY

InternationalRelations

29thAugust 2014

Question1

Securityis an importantissueof governmentsconcernsworldwide,andthisis becauseof thechangingtactics in terrorism andothermattersof intelligenceworldwide.Theneedforsecuresystemsin governmentandindividualinstallationshas beenan issueof concernin manycountries.TheUnited States of America is always in forefrontto championforthecreationof modern,tightandsecuresecuritysystem,not onlyinAmerica butalsoin theentireworldat large.TheCentral Investigations Agency (CIA), since its creationin theearly1960s, has beenbasing its activitieson theneedto haveandwithholdinformation.Forthisreason,theagencyhas beenensuringthatitsafeguards its informationto anyauthorizedpersonsincludingits seniorofficialsin thegovernment.Thewithholding of suchinformationisdonewith theintentionof protectingthem from anyconsequencesthat may arisein casetheinformationhappensto leakandbecomea matterof publicknowledge.PlausibleDeniability

Followingtheneedto havesecureandimportantinformationfrom thepublic,theCentral Investigations Agency devised apolicythat would controlthemannerin which thegovernmentwould behaveandreactin situationswheresuchinformationlandin thehandsof thepublicandotheran authorizedpersons.Indeterminingthesignificanceof thepolicy,theagencybased its caseon “covertoperations,”definingthem as, “activitiesconductedpursuantto thisdirective which are soplannedandexecutedthatanyU.S. Government responsibilityforthem is not evidentto unauthorizedpersonsandthatifuncovered theU.S. Government can plausiblydisclaimanyresponsibilityforthem.”1

Thistermas usedby theCentral Investigations Agency, oftenrelatesto seniorofficialsin thegovernmentandsecurityinstitutionsin a formalorinformallineof commandto disagreewith anyknowledgeof and/oraccountabilityforanyactionsconsidereddamnable.In addition,theseare theactionsthat havebeendoneby officialsin lowerranksdueto lackof evidencethat can giveproofof their participationin suchactions,eventhoughtheywerepersonallyinvolvedorthey were willfully ignorantof thesaidactions.

Applicationof thepolicy

Accordingto thepolicy,anyactivitiesconsidereddisreputableandunpopularfrom theCentral Investigations Agency andthegovernmentat largehaveto be deniedby high-ranking governmentofficials,thisis donein orderto insulatethemselves orshifttheblameon thepersonsandagentsthat wereinvolvedin theact.2In addition,itallowsforthosewhomay havedoubtsagainst them to haveanyevidenceagainst such.

Inthisunderstanding,thefactthatthere is noevidenceagainst suchactivitiesmakesthedenialplausible orcrediblein theeyesof thepublicorthosedoubting. By makingapublicdisclaimer against suchinformationthat has reachedin theeyesof thepublic,itsetsthegroundforplausiblyavoidinganyresponsibilityforan individual’sactionsin thefutureorits knowledge.Isthere anyneedforplausibledeniability?

Thecreationof thepolicyof plausibledeniability by theCentral Investigations Agency has resultedin mixedreactionsfrom differentsectionsof thepublic.3In as muchas it’sa legalargument,theseargumentshaveheldthathighranking officialsshouldalsobeheldaccountablefortheir actionsthesamewayjuniorstaffandotherlowerranking officialsare madeto. Itis forthisreasonthatdifferentlegaldoctrineshavechampioned forthecreationof variouslawsandpoliciesto ensurefairplayas faras securityof informationisconcerned.

CommandResponsibility, is a policythat is existent in variousorganizationsin placeof thepolicyof plausibledeniability. Under thispolicy,seniorofficialsin theorganizationare equallyheldaccountablefortheir actionsjustas itis forjuniorstaffandotherlowerranking officials.In fact,thepolicyexiststo makeseniorstaffaccountablefortheactionsandactivitiesof subordinatesandotherjuniorstaffwhoareinvolvedin a heinousactandinvalidateanystandinglegalprotectionunder which their denialof involvementorpartof theactionwould suffice.

Ina bidto supportthefactthatlawismeantforeveryone in governmentandotherorganizations,there should not be a needforcovertoperationsunder which seniorgovernmentofficialsshould becushionedagainst.In moderntimes,itis importantthateverybody takesaccountof themistakesthattheymake,thisway,itis not possibleforseniorofficialsandotherpeoplein highpositionsof influenceto becushionedfrom certainactivitiesat theexpenseof their subordinates.Question2Iran-ContraIncident andOperation Greystone

Theabove incidenceshappenedat differenttimesandinvolvedtheAmerican Central Investigations Agency in differentways.TheIntra-Contra incidenttookplaceduring theadministrationof President Ronald Reagan in the United States of America.4In thisincident,someseniorgovernmentofficialstookpartin thesaleof armsandartilleryto therepublicof Iran. Theagreementwasratified withtheaimof airingthereleaseof someseven American hostagesthat werebeingheldby a groupthat wasaffiliated to theIran administration.

Inthisoperation,theIsrael governmentplayedan importantroleits mainfunctionwasto shiparmsandartilleryto Iran, in addition,itwasto receivepaymentandfacilitatesits transferto theAmerican government.TheUnited States would in returnresupply Israel with morearmsandtheprocessto proceeduntil theagreementto freethehostageswasfinallymadesuccessful.

Ontheotherhand,theGreystone operationreferredto programsthat wererunby theCentral Investigations Agency immediatelyafter theSeptember 11attacks. In thisoperation,theCIA concentratedon variouscounter-terrorism programsincludinginterrogating suspectedmembersof theal Qaeda groupandholdingthem in secretprisonsin variouspartsof theworld.Mostof theseoperationsincludedpre-military operationsin variouspartsof theMiddle East, especiallyin Afghanistan, at thesametime,droneattacksandrelatedactivitieswerealsoinvolved.

Thisoperationhadbeencarriedout secretlyusingtheabbreviationGST, which fewpeoplewould recognizeas an investigative programof theCentral Investigation Agency. The secret code latercame to be revealed later in 2005 in one of the posts in an articlein Washington. ThisarticlereportedthatGST wasa programrunby theCentral Investigation Agency andincludeda planof recapturing anddetaining of suspectslinkedto theAl-Qaida terroristsgroup.

Objectivesof theoperations

Thesetwo operationsthoughrunningseparately,haddifferent objectives.Themainagendabehind Iran-Contra Incident wassafeguarding andrescuingtheAmerican hostagesthat werebeingheldby theIran government.5Theoperationwasbeingheldwith suchesteemandsecrecysothatthegovernmentwasnot viewedas sellingarmsto theterroristsin exchangeof their soldiersthat werebeingheldhostage.Forthisreason,theIsrael governmentwasseenasa worthypartnerto aidin theexchangeof weaponsfrom theAmerican governmentandreceiptof paymentson their behalf.

IntheGreystone operation,themainobjectiveseemsto havebeenfollowingandcapturingsomeof thesuspectsthat hadtakenplacein theplanningandactualexecutionof theSeptember 11 attacksin theUnited States. In addition,theoperationwasto rununder highlysecuredsystemsthat would giveminimalornoproofof their existenceandoperations.Planningof theoperations

Essentially,itis imperativetounderstandthatthesetwo operationsinvolveda lotof privatepoliciessince theybothconcernedsecurityissueswith theUnited States. Forthisreason,thegovernmentandtheCentral investigationAgency wasafter showingthecommitmentof thegovernmenttowards protectingits bordersandpeopleirrespective of wheretheywere.

Inthefirstoperation,therepublicof Israel wassupposedto facilitatetheshipmentof weaponsandartilleryto Iran whiletheUnited States would be responsibleforre-supplying Israel andreceivingpaymentson behalfof theAmerican government.Lateron,theplanchangedits courseto becomean arms-for-hostages plot,in thisnewoutlook,membersof thegovernment’sexecutivebranchstartedsellingweaponsto thegovernmentof Iran in exchangeforthereleaseAmerican hostagesbeingheldby a terroristgroupaffiliated to theIranian governmentin Lebanon.

ItisbelievedthatLieutenant Colonel North Oliver playedan importantrolein modifyingtheplan,North belongedto theAmericas National Security Council. In thisnewmodification,a sectionof profitsfrom thistransactionwasto be re-directed to findingtheanti-Sandinista andanti-communist rebels,which werereferredto as Contras in therepublicof Nicaragua.On theotherhand,theCentral Investigations Agency wasthechiefplannerof theGreystone operation.TheCIA decidedto carryout its operationsin differentpartsof theworldandMiddle East in particularusingthecodeGST with variousnumeralson itlike GST 001 among others. Thisway,itwasableto establishsecretprisonsin theMiddle Eastanddetain peoplesuspectedto havea linkto theoutlawedAl-Qaeda terroristgroup.Emergingissuesin theoperations

Inas muchas bothoperationsachievedcertainlevels of success,there wereseveralissuesthat arosealong theway.In thefirstplace,variouslegalissuesseemedto disdainthereputationof thepresidentandtheUnited States Republic. PresidentReagan wasa staunchproponentof theContra Cause,however,there could not be an establishedrealevidenceof his authorizationof diversionof moneyfrom thesaleof weapons.

Accordingto someinformationfrom somenotesthat werecapturedby thesecretaryof defenseat thattime,thepresidentis saidto havehadfullawarenessof potentialhostages’transferswith therepublicof Iran. In fact,itis believedfrom thisrevelationthathewasfullyawayof thesaleof Hawk andtheTOW missilesto some“moderateelements”that weresaidto belongto thecountry.

Asinvestigationsinto thisissuecontinuedto intensify,thepresidentappearedonnationaltelevisionto shedlighton theissue.In his address,heconfirmedthatthere wassufficientproofof thetransferof armsandartilleryto theIranian government,however,thetransferhadnot beenconductedin theobjectiveof tradingarmsforAmerican hostagesthat werebeingheldin Lebanon. Later,furtherevidencecameinto light,makingthepresidentappearagainon thenationalairwaves. Thistime,thepresidenthada differentmessageandpointedout thathewaswillingto takefullresponsibilityof anyarisingconsequences.Hecommunicatedthatwhathadbegunas a noblecourse,a strategicplanto deterioratetherepublicof Iran hadslippedduring its actualimplementation to becomea planof tradingarmsforhostages.

Ontheotherhand,thearticlein one of thepostsin Washington gavethehintinto therealmeaningof thesecretcodeGST as usedby theCentral Investigations Agency. Thiswasaseriousconcernsince manylawyersandlegalsystemsin differentcountriesdidnot acceptmostof thetactics that werebeingusedby theagency.

Inthisunderstanding,theagencyhadto struggleto revealtherealmeaningandobjectivesbehind GST. Itis from theseinvestigationsthatitwasdiscoveredthattheagencywasholdingpeople,suspectedto be linkedto theoutlawedAl-Qaeda network.Nevertheless,theagencyplayedan importantrolein capturingmanyof thesuspectsinto theSeptember 11 attacksanddetainingsomemembersof thegroup.Thiswasimportantin reducingtheir powerandactivitiesglobally CIA playedan importantrolethat culminatedin thecaptureof thegroup’sleaderlaterin Pakistan.6

Question3

Ingeneral,all theaboveactionswerecarriedout in lightof thepolicyof denialplausibility, in thiscase,covertactionswereheldwith highregard.Indeed,manypeoplethatplayeda rolein thefirstoperationshadto facethesackamidst revelationsof theoperationthat seemedto tainttheimageof theUnited States as tradingarmsforhostageswith theIranian government.Thisis themainreasonwhythePresident of United States at thattimehadto comeout andclaimpersonalresponsibilityandaccountabilityforanyactionsandconsequencesfrom theoperation.Arecovertactionsappropriate?

Theissueof whethercovertactionsshould beseenas appropriatecontinuesto remaina legalargument.However,variouslegalthinkingandargumentshaverejectedthepolicysince itmakesjuniormembersof thegovernmentandotherorganizationsstandas sacrificiallambswhenever plansmadeandexecutedby seniormembersseemedto failalong theway.

Infact,someorganizationshaveendedup developingdifferentdoctrineslike thecommandof responsibility,whereseniormembersof governmentagenciesandotherorganizationstakesresponsibilityof theactionsandactivitiesof juniors andsubordinatemembers.

Consequencesof covertactions

Covertactionsandthepolicyof plausibledenialbringmoreharmthan goodto a sectionof staffin organizations,particularlythoseof lowerrank.To seniorstaff,thepolicyensuresthattheyarenot heldresponsibleformistakesthattheyplanandexecuteindirectly.7Thisseemsto workwellespeciallyforsecurityandintelligenceagenciesas theyaimat protectingtheir information,which is at timeskeyto thesecurityof thenationat large.

Itis in thelightof theimpartialitythatthepolicyholdsthata sectionof lawagencieshavelobbiedforits amendmentssuchthatthere are levellegalgroundsforbothseniorandjunior.Itis expectedthatamendmentsinto thepolicyto ensurethatallstaffin organizationsandgovernmentagencieshavesafeworkingatmosphere.Consequently, there should be specialpoliciesthat ensuresecurityinformationandotherrelatedaspectsareproperlysecured.

Bibliography

Campbell,B. B. DeathSquads in Global Perspective: Murder with Deniability.Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, 2000.

Carlisle,R. P. TheComplete Idiot`s Guide to Spies and Espionage.Alpha Books, NY, USA, 2003.

Jamieson,K. H. DirtyPolitics: Deception, distraction and Democracy.Oxford University Press US, Oxford USA, 1993.

Ranstorp,M. Hizb`allahin Lebanon: The Politics of the Western Hostage Crisis,St. Martin’s Press, New York, 1997.

Treverton,G. F. CovertAction: The CIA and the Limits of American Intervention in thePostwar World.Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, 1998.

Zinn,H.&nbspAPeople`s History of the United States.Perennial, New York, 2003.

1 Treverton, G. F.&nbspCovert Action: The CIA and the Limits of American Intervention in the Postwar World. (Palgrave Macmillan: Basingstoke, 1988), 45-48

2 Jamieson, K. H. &nbspDirty Politics: Deception, distraction and Democracy. (Oxford University Press US: Oxford USA, 1993), 185

3 Treverton, G. F.&nbspCovert Action: The CIA and the Limits of American Intervention in the Postwar World. (Palgrave Macmillan: Basingstoke, 1988), 45-48

4 Campbell, B. B. Death Squads in Global Perspective: Murder with Deniability. (Palgrave Macmillan: Basingstoke, 2000), 28

5 Ranstorp, M. Hizb`allah in Lebanon: The Politics of the Western Hostage Crisis, (St. Martin’s Press: New York, 1997), 98

6 Carlisle, R. P. The Complete Idiot`s Guide to Spies and Espionage. (Alpha Books, NY: USA, 2003), 28-31.

7 Zinn, H.&nbspA People`s History of the United States. (Perennial: New York, 2003), 45