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CIHuntR1
10-05-2007, 14:07
I'd like to know how the intel satisfaction survey is for the last couple years on Africa (This is not sensitive since it is more historic and there is a new team in with Mike R., Lars H. and Fitz gone-- therefore only lessons learned). I got the impression that S-2s may have been coming in light with what was given to ODA since the 96 could not articulate PIRs. Was unsure if they were being protective of the team Commanders or protective of their jobs.

Light meaning biased and not detailed comments in IPB like "Tuaregs are lazy, don't worry about working with them."

Happy to take off line if preferred or if recommended by moderator.

Pete
10-07-2007, 18:07
Africa is a big county and covers a lot of religions, or lack of same, tribes - very important , governments, social customs and terrain.

Even within the same country satisfaction can vary with the different battalions of it's Army.

No "one shoe fits all" works in Africa.

Jack Moroney (RIP)
10-07-2007, 21:02
Africa is a big county and covers a lot of religions, or lack of same, tribes - very important , governments, social customs and terrain.

Even within the same country satisfaction can vary with the different battalions of it's Army.

No "one shoe fits all" works in Africa.

Absolutely. It is all about tribes and the idiot non-Africans that drew boundaries based on European logic and culture.

CIHuntR1
10-08-2007, 10:09
Agreed but I will rephrase...for the Africa insights that you did receive before 2007, specifically those in 1-10, was the content of value or did it suck.

Specifically, I would see some cultural information that covered tidbits like "Tribe X migrates from May to October. Tribe members dye their hair red with urine. Tribe X practices animist traditions. Tribe X has clashed with government forces about land rights."

This content would be opposed to something more operationalized based on the mission at hand. Tribe X will be migrating herds toward this river in April. Tribe X will avoid Tribe Y at all cost. ...

With the operationalized insights on Africa, if a soldier was forced into an E&E situation, they check their surroundings to determine who to seek for assistance. On one side of a river there is a tribe with herds...boys and young men are showering under cows urine...they are armed with AK-47s...women are topless....; on the other side are military dressed individuals, armed, have white SUVs, some armed men have head coverings and only flip flops for shoes.

Who do you pick? Dinka tribe. Who do you avoid? Janjaweed, government troops, and Internal Defense.

This is what I sensed was missing. Curious if others believed the same.

lksteve
10-08-2007, 15:45
Africa is a big county and covers a lot of religions, or lack of same, tribes - very important , governments, social customs and terrain.
damn near big enough to be a continent...:p

Pete
10-08-2007, 16:06
damn near big enough to be a continent...:p


Big County as in Montana:D

lksteve
10-08-2007, 21:00
Big County as in Montanahell, i wouldn't mind going back to Montana...;)

Jack Moroney (RIP)
10-09-2007, 06:37
. I got the impression that S-2s may have been coming in light with what was given to ODA since the 96 could not articulate PIRs. Was unsure if they were being protective of the team Commanders or protective of their jobs. .

I have found over the years that it is not normally the folks at ground level not being able to articulate PIRs as the primary problem. When it comes to working in areas where the US seems to think it has an immediate interest driven by factors other than true national interest with clearly defined outcomes, the problem lies at higher leves where folks who conceive of these "missions" fail to adequately define the requirements for the "mission". What you are left with are folks within the "intelligence community" who try to fall back on templates and checklists built to fight yesterday's conflicts. There is not an ODA in existence, who given a mission and access to the material needed to complete an area study, that cannot define its own intelligence requirements. The problem arises when those requirements are passed to the "intelligence community" for resolution that it does not fit into how the "intelligence community" either see their world or they question why resources should be "squandered" on providing what seems to be low level requirements. We can argue about tactical vs operational vs strategic, but then for want of a nail-etc.

timeshadow (RIP)
10-10-2007, 23:47
My parents were NGO's in Kenya and Zambia for 14 years, and I visited them several times in both locations (during off-duty travel). They learned the local languages, and when it came to intel they were light years ahead of the RSO's at the embassy.

I hope that the new AFRICOM intel people are debriefing the many former and current NGO's. I would take a century to gather all this information using just standard military collection methods.

Pilgrim96BE4
11-07-2007, 12:36
Speaking from the viewpoint of a 96B that used to work at EAC and in MEAF (MiddleEast/Africa) and with PIRs. It was a CONSTANT battle to refocus the attention from the strategic requirements of an upper level command, to the tactical and practical concerns of the people that needed and actually requested the intel.

But it's difficult to discuss without getting into specifics. I'm curious if things have changed within the past five years though...