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tv   Former DHS Officials Testify on Agencys Intelligence Gathering Sharing  CSPAN  May 19, 2021 11:56am-1:37pm EDT

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the u.s. house today will be voting on whether or not to create a bipartisan commission to investigate the january 6th attack on the u.s. capital. several committees are looking into what happened and how security can be improved. the senate homeland security and government affairs committee heard testimony on gathering and the sharing of intelligence. >> the committee will come to order. today we'll hear from former homeland security intelligence civils and civil rights experts on their views of the appropriate roles,
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responsibilities, and authorities for the department of homeland security's office of intelligence and analysis. i would like to thank each of our witnesses for joining us today. and for their work in the public and private sectors to protect the american people. today's testimony will give the committee critical insight into how the office of intelligence and analysis operates, and what roles it should play in providing threat assessment and domestic terrorism intelligence to department of homeland security leadership, state and local law enforcement partners and other private entities. we will also hear testimony on how to ensure citizens' fundamental civil rights and civil liberties are safeguarded as we work to better tackle a rising domestic terrorism threat. earlier this year the committee heard about how systemic breakdowns in planning and preparation led to the deadly
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attack on the united states capitol, the heart of our democratic. the office of intelligence and analysis along with other intelligence and counterterrorism agencies failed to effectively identify the threat on january 6th. we need to understand the factors that led to that failure and what concrete steps can be taken to better understand the current threats that we face. and ensure that the department of homeland security is effectively sharing information with local and state law enforcement. i appreciate the hard work and the ongoing dedication of the national security experts in the office of intelligence and analysis, and i recognize they have challenges and face challenges they must address. however, it is apparent that the office must also do more to effectively counter the rising threats posed by white
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supremacists and anti-government violence that threatens communities all across our country. one of the greatest challenges, the office of intelligence and analysis has faced is the pressure to politicize domestic terrorism threats under the previous administration, the office reportedly down played the threat posed by white supremacists and anti-government violence and reportedly censored some intelligence information under pressure from president trump. at times this political pressure led to problematic and inaccurate analysis related to peaceful protest movements overstating the roles of certain groups and even reportedly developing intelligence on american journalists. our national security and the safety of americans cannot depend on political whims or individual leader's biases. that is why congress must work to ensure that analysis conducted by the intelligence community is separated from the political environment.
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and based in facts and in data that accurately assessed security threats. the office also struggles with employee morale. a challenge identified by the government accountability office reports that -- and employee surveys, possibility because of a lack of consistent leadership and direction. since this office was first created 19 years ago, it has had more than a dozen different leaders. only three of those individuals including one of our witnesses today, led the office for more than two years. these obstacles and other challenges must be addressed quickly. our nation faces very real and deadly domestic terrorism threats. own our national security agencies must ensure that our counterterrorism efforts and resources align with those threats. a recent long delay joint report from the fbi and dhs identified
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racially or ethnically motivated extremists, primarily white supremacists as the most significant national security threat based on data from recent years. and while i appreciate the initial steps the biden administration has taken to begin addressing thehe alarming rise of these threats, it's clear there is so much more work to be done. american lives are at risk. and we must ensure that we are taking all, all appropriate action to safeguard the american people and protect their fundamental rights as well. i look forward to hearing from our witnesses who bring unique perspectives on how we can improve the office of intelligence and analysis to meet our security goals. i have no doubt that this committee can work in a nonpartisan way to protect americans from threats both foreign and domestic.
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with that i turn it over for opening comments. >> thank you for holding this hearing. @important and timely for us to learn more about what the homeland security office of intelligence and analysis does, and how to ensure that they're doing their job better. dhs is responsible for protecting the homeland, and i believe its intelligence and analysis capabilities are essential to that effort. so let me just start by saying i think the role that's being played is critical. and i look forward to discussing how to best equip the department and the partners with critical, timely, and actionable intelligence to keep us safe from both foreign and domestic adversaries. there's plenty of challenges. the events of recent attacks on
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federal facilities and law enforcement. mexican and other foreign cartel networks that are now operating much more so as i understand it, within our cities. the ongoing threat, of course, posed by foreign terrorists. all this underscores the need for ongoing intelligence and analysis focussed on identifying and mitigating threats to our country. since its inception dhs has had an intelligence office to support the mission. understandably. congress underscored the importance of intelligence and information sharing in the implementing recommendations from the 9/11 commission. this was back in 2007. and that formally established the office of intelligence and analysis. while it's one of the smaller entities within the ic community, the intelligence community, ina is the only ic member charged with delivering intelligence to our local, our state, our tribal, our territorial and private sector partners and developing
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intelligence from these important partners for the department and for the intelligence community. so to put it simply, ina is intended to facilitate domestic coordination required to support the effort of dhs to protect the homeland. in ohio we have three fusion centers that have benefitted greatly from the partnership with ina. i visited one a couple times. the cincinnati fusion center where i have seen the importance of the support and the partnership that ina provides. for example, i recently learned that an ina intelligence officer at one of our fusion centers in columbus, ohio provided critical information on a suspect who had a plot to cause mass violence at a large music concert venue in columbus. the center was able to work with law enforcement to locate the suspect and place the suspect on
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the no fly list. he was then intercepted while attempting to board a flight on his way to columbus to carry out the attack. that's an example of one example, but there are many like that where ina has played a critical role. the committee learned from our oversight commission that ina fell short in reporting on the potential threat to the attack on the capitol. they weren't the only ones, but they did fall short in my view. security officials cited the lack of intelligence sharing from ina and others as a reason law enforcement was not better prepared to respond. in our investigation, the then acting undersecretary for ina revealed weaknesses in how they collect intelligence and leverage the relationship with state, local, tribal, and territorial and private sector partners to learn of new evolving threats. and that will be part of the report that we will be issuing
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here in the next few weeks. notably, ina is an important role to play in combatting transnational criminal organizations. so-called tcos. including those responsible for drug trafficking, violence, human smuggling, child exploitation and a host of other criminal activities. as i said earlier, tcos are increasingly present here in this country. they're always evolving. they're always adapting to maximize their profits. as they did, as covid-19 reshapes supply chains and transport patterns. in fact, according to the dea, the drug enforcement association, mexican cartels, quote, reinforced supplies and are sending larger fentanyl and methamphetamine loads into the united states. we certainly see that at the mexican border. it seems more important than ever for federal and local partners to be in close coordination to understand and
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combat these dynamic threats. and while the challenges are national, they have hit local communities, including in my home state of ohio particularly hard. there are a number of issues i hope we're able to explore today. there are differing opinions on the role in regard to collection of intelligence. in my view having timely quality intelligence is an essential component to keep our communities safe. i hope today we can talk about how dhs can appropriately provide. the threats we face are dynamic and becoming complex every day. they aren't all focussed on washington d.c. considering the current environment, how can i na best leverage the fusion centers we talked about and the partnership with state, local, and private sector partners to meet the needs of the department charged with securing our homeland? finally, over the years ina faced challenges in recruiting qualified talent and has experienced consistently low
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morale and high rates of attrition. this is a deep concern of mine. i hope our witnesses can help us understand what can be done to address the long-standing personnel issues. so, i'm looking forward to your testimony and some answers to those questions we posed today. thank you. >> thank you for the opening comments. it's the practice of the committee to swear in witnesses, so if our witnesses will please stand and raise your right hand and our witnesses on video, raise your right hand so we can see you on the video. do you swear that the testimony you will give before this committee will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth so help you god? >> i do. >> witnesses may be seated. our first witness is general francis taylor, the former
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undersecretary at the department of homeland security. prior to his assignment at dhs, ina, general taylor was vice president and chief security officer for the general electric company. the general has served as the assistant secretary of state and director of the office of foreign missions with the rank of ambassador. general also previously served in the u.s. -- as the u.s. ambassador at large, and coordinator for counterterrorism for the department of state from july of twun to november of 2002. prior to that the general accumulated 31 years of military experience. the former general, welcome to the committee. you are recognized for your five minutes opening remarks.
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>> chairman peters, ranking member portman and members of the committee, thank you for the opportunity to appear before you today to talk about the dhs office of intelligence and analysis. i've submitted written testimony and would ask that be entered into the record and i will try to summarize that in my five minutes this morning. ina's mission is integral to dhs. the intelligence community and the security of our nation. it's the only u.s. intelligence agency that is specifically chartered to provide intelligence, support to state, local, tribal, territorial, and private sector partners to improve the flow and quality of information sharing across our nation. as the intelligence arm of the dhs, ina has a responsibility to support the intelligence needs of the senior leadership of the department. to ensure relevant intelligence from the ic as shared systemically with our state,
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local, tribal, territorial and private sector partners and that relevant information from those partners becomes intelligence that is shared more broadly with the ic. as the chief intelligence officer for the department, the undersecretary of ina coordinates and deconflicts the efforts of the dhs intelligence enterprise to meet the intelligence needs of the department and our ic partners. additionally, the undersecretary's responsibility to lead information sharing and safeguarding for the department provides a unique opportunity to use the myriad of data generated by dhs and to turn that data into effective information to share with our sltt, federal, and international partners. there are several initiatives that i believe ina leadership must focus on. first, restoring trust. ina leaders will need to focus on rebuilding trust with key
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stake holders within and across dhs, the intelligence enterprise, as well as externally with broader ic, with the ic and congress. controversy surrounding ina activities and the use of intelligence authorities in recent years have undermined its reputation and raised questions about the integrity and objectivity of the information it provides to stake holders. in order to rebuild stake holder and public trusts, ina will need to focus on advancing the core mission and demonstrating that it brings value -- invaluable mission expertise to the customers. second, focus on sltt and private sector partners. moving forward, ina should to dus on effective prioritizing of the information sharing activities ensuring they meet the needs of state and local law enforcement and yield
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intelligence information that could useful. as a complement, not as a competitor of the fbi. likewise, ina should continue to engage the partners in private industry to gain perspective on national and homeland security challenges facing the sector and ways to facilitate public/private partnerships. third, reinvent intelligence analysis. ina leadership focussed on the office's intelligence analysis activities and creation of intelligence products that draw upon unique dhs data sets and data science with a robust framework for privacy and civil liberties. ina can be a leading player in government focusing on data science to create unique insights and produce clearly differentiated intelligence products. with the excess special data sets and focussed on a set of priorities, ina can lead the ic
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in reinventing how dhs does intelligence. i believe the mission center concept that was established by the most recent undersecretary is a great idea and needs to be further developed within ina and within the dh s ie. ina should create a budget and fully resource each mission center to appropriately support the needs of the intelligence enterprise, components, the department leadership, and the broader ic. finally, ina should lead and data analytics using unique data generated by the department. dhs generates a tremendous amount of relevant information as dayty mission activities, and when i was there, that information was -- sat in more than 900 mutually independent databases. that needs to change.
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finally as senator portman mentioned, we need to invest in our work force. i'd be happy to talk about that and morale during your questions. thank you for the opportunity to be here today. >> thank you for your testimony. our second witness is the former deputy administrator of the transportation administration. she's currently a senior strategic adviser for guide house national security segment. prior to serving as the administrator, she led the department of homeland security and the department of justice related to intelligence, information sharing, border security, screening, and watch listing and aviation maritime and service transportation. miss cogswell, you are
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recognized. >> thank you. distinguished members of the committee, thank you for the opportunity to testify before you this morning. as you examine the role of dhs's office of intelligence and analysis. my comments for the committee are informed by my more than 24 years of career, federal, civilian service and from the various capacities in which i have both led and worked with dhs/ina. i served in multiple dhs leadership roles including with three different head quarters elements and three different dhs component agencies as well as a three-year tour. when i served as the department assistant secretary for screening coordination as special assistant at the national security council and most recently at the deputy administrator for -- i was a consumer. while at dhs policy, another head quarters office, i
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partnered with dhs/ina, to collaborate on the reports for leaders and to lead dhs governance processes. as the assistant director for intelligence, i was a member of the homeland security intelligence council working with dhs/ina to inform policy, priorities, requirements, and production. finally, i led dhs/ina serving as the acting undersecretary as the nominee was undergoing confirmation. >> i found the highest value roles for dhs/ina to be supporting the enterprise, the undersecretary as -- should lead development of strategy, policy and integrated set of priorities including training and budget. advocating for the dhs mission, to the intelligence community and through associated budget processes. dhs/ina should advocate on
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behalf for priorization of collection. access to information, use of ic information platforms and tools and associated resources. providing the secretary deputy secretary and head quarters organizations with intelligence services. ensuring the head quarters offices and the secretary have access to the same high quality intelligence as their counterparts, particularly in advance of interagency and policy meetings. coordinating production, analysis to support dhs and homeland security unique needs. in addition to products like the homeland security threat assessment, they should support development of sense of community products to support policy and operational decisions. development of individual products should be by the dhs entity best positioned to speak on behalf of the information including not only traditional, but analysis developed by dhs in support of the ongoing programs and other knowledgeable stake
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holders including academia and associations that the products are scoped to answer relevant questions for the conversations. engaging the fusion centers. they should support state and local and tribal partners with training information and analysis that helps the partners based on the partner needs. and collaborating with other dhs entities to enable and effective information sharing environment. dhs/ina should support the design and funding of technical architectures and multiuse tools that enhance the ability to match and exchange information where appropriate to achieve their missions. in collaboration with the operating components and other head quarters offices. dhs/ina should work to ensure it can perform effectively with approaches based on the needs and capabilities of the partners. to do so, dhs/ina needs to examine staffing and morale, including in particular, stabilizing the organizational
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structure, mission, and role. the work force needs consistency and continuity. something that lasts beyond the tenure of an undersecretary. they need to be recognized as having subject matter experts and are seen as partners. enhancing career development opportunities that. they should invest to positively impact mobility to dhs agencies, increasing opportunities and exposure to the wider homeland security mission. depoliticizing products and career staff. they should enhance the strategic communications with the customers and stake holders, providing for the opportunity for input into ina's analytic product selection process, methods, data used, how it's assessed. and ensure that it seeks out support from partners and oversight including this
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committee for efforts in areas that may become controversial. as this committee examines dhsina's role, i would encourage you to consider things that help the organization for years to come. it takes investment and time, developing talent, a willingness to measure, impact, and modify activity based on the rumts, and a commitment to strategic communications. thank you for the opportunity to testify before you today. i look forward to your questions. >> thank you, miss cogswell. our next witness is mr. sinna. he centers encourage effective, efficient, ethical, lawful, and professional intelligence and information sharing. and prevent and reduce the harmful effects of crime and terrorism on victims and
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communities. in addition to his leadership positions, he serves on law enforcement and homeland security advisory committees for the members of the president's cabinet, the department of homeland security, the federal bureau of investigation, and the attorney general of the united states. welcome to the hearing. you may proceed with your opening comments. >> thank you, chairman, and members to the committee. i appreciate the opportunity to be with you. i am the director of the northern california -- the nfca represents the interest of eighty state and locally -- public safety employees. we refer to all eighty centers as the national network of fusion centers. they assist in the prevention, mitigation response and recovery of terrorist acts and other major criminal threats.
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a locally integrated and inch gauged ina is critical for our partners to analyze and share threat related information relevant and timely. we're offering concrete recommendations that would help ensure ina is able to maximize the potential capacity to protect the homeland. ina must increase the deployment of well trained and experienced personnel to fusion centers. they must offer high quality training an analytical trade craft and civil liberties. they must also ensure reliable access to critical data including criminal justice information and classified data and finally, they must be empowered to have direct coordination authority of dhs resources that are allocated to support fusion centers. having the partner engagement function which is routinely coordinating with us and having them report directly to the ina
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undersecretary and principle deputy would be helpful in facilitating this. some fusion centers do not have any ina presence, and some others have part time ina personnel. currently ina only has a little more than 100 personnel deployed across the nation. from our perspective, that is not sufficient. we strongly encourage congress to support increased funding for ina to ensure it can hire, train an adequate number of personnel. more than two-thirds of all the funding that supports fusion centers comes from state and local budgets. the grand funding is another critical source that comes through the urban area initiatives. some centers are almost entirely grant funding. some fusion centers provide operational support. in some cases fema has limited or denied the ability for fusion centers to provide the support. we must find better ways to
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improve efficient authorization of grantd funding in a timely manner. they should be empowered to ensure that grant guidance and funding are closely aligned with the needs of federal, state, territorial and local public partners. it's critical to the successful operations of the fusion centers. some centers still lack access to critical daxs like the treasuries financial crimes enforcement networks system. the national data exchange, index brings together over 7700 agencies records systems. we have over 18,000 agencies in america. most agencies are not connected to the critical resource and some fusion centers do not have access. they should be equipped to help protect everyone in america, regardless of where they are. ina can work with federal partners to ensure appropriate access by state and local partners. ina should continue to support the enhancement of existing systems including the homeland
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security network and work with us to deploy for advanced technology. it's a trusted fusion center tools. ina should continue to support the capabilities by providing access to analysis tool and increasing training opportunities. right now fusion centers, the original information sharing systems and the fbi's national threat operation centers are analyzing data and sharing information on the reported threats to life through the fbi's guardian system and directly with local and public safety agencies. the criminal coordinating council and global adviser committee are writing recommendations for management tips and threats like reporting. we need the dhs resources to support this effort to mitigate immediate threats to our communities. in summary, strengthening ina's
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capabilities to support the network and the nation require some we to reorient the focus. the focus must be on the state, local, and territorial partners that are the heart of protecting our homeland. the recommendation i mentioned would help support the national network that are helpful to our members and partners across the nation. on behalf of the nfca, thank you for the invitation to testify and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you. for your testimony. our final witness is the director of the liberty and national security program at new york university school of law's brennan center for justice. she has previously received before congress regarding the government surveillance of muslim and arab americans following the september 11th attacks. and has organized advocacy efforts against diskrim ma tory state laws. she helped establish an
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independent inspector general for the new york police department and she worked as a senior policy officer at the organization for prohibition of chemical weapons in the hague and clerked for the judge at the international criminal tribunal in the former yugoslavia. welcome. you're recognized for your five-minute opening statement. thank you, chairman. ranking member, and members of the committee, i'm happy to be here testifying today. as our country faces the persistent problem of white splem cyst and far white -- to help guide the response. the office has great influence because it sits at the center of a web of intelligence and law enforcement agencies spread throughout the country. in light of the influence, it is critically important that ina's output and advice meet the highest standards of respect of american civil rights and civil
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liberties. this is especially true when it comes to domestic intelligence which presents unique threats because of its obvious overlap with protected political speech and organizing. ina is prohibited from collecting or giving information based solely on first amendment protected activities but it has in the past targeted muslim americans for little apparent reason other than their religion. last summer as demonstrations triggered by the killing of george floyd broke out across the country, ina led the expansion of intelligence activities under the guise of protecting federal courthouses. ina's software collected information about matters that can be reasonably trusted for homeland security, but also matters that are traditionally handled by local authorities as part of their public safety mandate. "the washington post," ina even had access to protester's communications on telegram which is not allowed by the guidelines, and these were
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written up in an intelligence report disseminated to the network. and the office circulated three intelligence reports summarizing tweets written by the editor of the legal blog in a reporter for the new york times. it's particularly critical that ina gets the house in order as dhs pivots to confront the threat of domestic terrorism. they have designated extriechl as a priority area and created a family within ina to focus on the threat. it seems they will look at social media postings to identify narratives and grievances to gauge their prif lens and see if they may influence acts of violence. i am concerned this focus is likely to be ineffective and invase ive, sweeping in reams of information, including about constitutional protected activities. targeting what people say online is unlikely to be effective. the reason is pretty simple.
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large numbers of people believe in the types of narratives that dhs has already identified as drivers of violence in the january 27th bulletin. the sentiment has a long sentiment in the u.s. many people believe -- many americans dispute the results of the 2020 elections. and police use of force against african americans triggers demonstrationsing across the country. we can argue about whether people holding the views are right or wrong, but they're hardly a way of predicting harm. it is not specific to the threat of violence. the acting undersecretary of ina, we acknowledge this fact noting that it is difficult to discern actual spent to carry out violence from any hyperbolic speech on the internet. this is supported by years of research which show the difficulty of interpreting social media posts without context or knowledge of the conventions in particular
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communities or plat forms. dhs and all agencies should know the limits of social media to find threats. according to their pilot programs, it did not help in finding security threats. the people charged with running the programs said they were not able to rely on the accounts to people and even when they were, they weren't able to determine the context and reliability of what they saw. to address the concerns i outlined, i think it's critical to strengthen ina's civil rights safeguards and oversight over the functions. i have four recommendations. first, given social media centrality to political discourse and the difficulty of finding threats online, they should at a minimum explain how it intends to ensure it is focussed on identifying violent actors rather than simply keeping tabs on what americans see on the internet. second, oversight needs to be strengthened. this hearing is a great example.
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the dhs also has a dedicated office of civil rights and civil liberties and a privacy office. their role was eliminated. congress should consider ensuring the oversight functions cannot be so easily sidelined in the future. regular audits can help. lastly, we need to pay attention to the enormous amount of information americans contained in dhs databases. former dhs officials have said that this level of information -- raises privacy and due process concerns. this would be an appropriate topic of inquiry for the oversight board in my opinion. thank you for the opportunity. . i look forward to answering any questions you may have. >> thank you for your opening statement. general, in last year's homeland threat assessment, dhs stated
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that domestic violent extremism, specifically white supremist extremist are the most lethal homeland security threat. that's a finding that both myself and ranking member portman have been saying for some time now. and it's clear that this threat is real and it's clear that we need to combat it. so my question to you is beyond establishing the domestic terrorism branch, which is certainly i think we all agree, a step in the right direction, are there other changes to ina's organization or authorities that you believe would help them address this threat? >> it's my view that ina has the requisite authorities to address this threat. if it prioritizes the threat. and in the last administration, it's my understanding that domestic terrorism was not considered a priority for ina.
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in fact, that the ina leadership kind of deferred to the fbi on that. so i think it's the authority exists. it's a focus on what the outcome is. ina is trying to achieve, and how they do that consistent with privacy civil rights and liberties going forward. >> so your testimony was not prioritized. they have the authorities to do it. perhaps let me drill down on that a little bit if we could. what do you see as the added value that ina provides to the broader federal intelligence community and partners in combatting this? what is the specific value they could bring if sufficiently prioritized? >> much of the work against violent extremists occurs in the 18,000 police departments across our country. local law enforcement confronts these individuals, investigates these folks because they're
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committing acts in communities that those officers are sworn to protect. it's my view that through the fusion centers, ina, and the intention officers can bring better perspective to the national level of what these 18,000 police organizations are seeing trend-wise and tactics, techniques and procedures in their communities. the fbi plays an extraordinarily important role in its jttf, but as the director testified, there needs to be a definitive act of violence for the fbi to get involved. and i think that's the gap that ina can help cover with its collection and production in the field. >> very good. this question is as ina attempts to better understand and analyze the real threat posed by
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domestic terrorism, could you share with the committee some of the concerns that communities of color in particular are facing with the suffer to combat domestic terrorism? >> thank you for that question. so for communities of color, when you have broad open intelligence gathering, authorities and programs, there is a risk that they will be the target of those programs. and we've seen this sort of systemically over the last two decades where people are targeted for surveillance, often on the basis of nothing other than religion. we've seen this with african american communities being targeted. we've seen the black lives matter movement being targeted. and this is a pretty well-known phenomenon in the united states. so i think the overall concern is that domestic terrorism is discussed almost as a stand-in
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for white supremacist violence but covers a broader range of issues as we've seen from documents. so the concern is that these kinds of broad open surveillance programs will actually be used to target communities of color as has been the case in the past. >> very good. general, last year you authored an op ed noting your significant concern with ina's reportedly problematic intelligence operations in portland, and the publishing of intelligence on journalists specifically. more recently, this committee has found that ina warned generally about the potential for election-related violence, but failed to issue a warning specific to the risk facing the capital on january sixth. in both examples, ina did not clearly did not serve its customers or the american people in that respect.
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my question is you is in your opinion, what are the key reasons for ina's failures over the past year? >> it's hard for me, senator, to kind of focus in on the key reasons for failure, because i wasn't in the decision cycle. but i think organizations like ina fail to meet their mission if they're not organized in a way that ensures consistency of production. consistency of focus. and it's my understanding that those processes and procedures that at least existed when i was there were no longer being used from an execution point of view. so i think solid leadership and solid management will save the day. by the way, i'm a product of the church commission. and the followon from counter intel-pro. i've been on the privacy and
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civil liberties commission for president bush. privacy and civil liberties are fundamental to how we should think about domestic intelligence, and for whatever reason, that was not the case during the last year. >> we talk about the stability and continuity, i would assume the fact that we've had a lack of stability when it comes to ina over in the leadership has contributed to the problem. >> yes. as you mentioned in your opening statement, 12 different leaders over 19 years really does not give you a lot of confidence about continuity. and during my tenure, it has been my experience in the military is when you take over an organization, you try to organize it to focus on the mission. much of what we put in place was dismantled after we left office
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in 2017. >> thank you, general. >> let me start with general taylor and miss cogswell. a fundamental question. both of you have broad national security background including a role of managing ina. do we need ina at dhs? yes or no. >> yes. >> agree. >> i think it's important that we have this, particularly as you both commented on our state, local, tribal, and private sector coordination and communication goes through ina. nobody else has that responsibility. is that correct? >> that's correct. >> one of my big concerns has been the growth of these so-called tco, the transnational criminal organizations.
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they're responsible for a lot of criminal activity as you know, but one that is particularly pernicious right now is the movement of drugs into our communities, fentanyl and synthetic opioids. they seem to be working their way into the system more. in other words, they're more vertically integrated in our communities themselves. not just bringing things across the border as they're certainly doing. what are we doing with regard to ina in that issue? are we thinking expansively enough when it comes to combatting the tcos that have the tentacles in the communities around the country? what's your view? >> senator portman, i think that this is a problem for the entire dhs intelligence enterprise. the organization miss cogswell led in i.c.e. has a very important role to play in
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helping state and local law enforcement and other federal partners to gather the intelligence necessary to disrupt these organizations going forward. so i don't think it's just ina, but it's how the intelligence enterprise is organized to support the investigation and field work of cbp, of united states, of dea, across the country is the important role that ina plays, trying to coordinate that effort. >> how about the coordination with the 18,000 police forces around the country. isn't that a key role? >> absolutely. and that's a part of understanding what is going on on the ground. what the priorities are and sharing that information more broadly with federal partners, not just ina, but with i.c.e. and cbp. >> miss cogswell, do you have
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thoughts on this? >> a critically important topic for us. i would like to give one example to the point from when i was still there. we were extremely fortunate as the national security council began examining the transnational organized crime issue that they said we want to look to have a law enforcement organization lead a whole of community effort to assess the threat across all the different dimensions that will help set the stage for us to have the right policy debate about how the u.s. government can take better and broader action. i was extremely fortunate that my team, my chief of staff at the time was selected to lead the effort for the entire community with support of dhs/ina as well as other members of dhs, the department of justice and the intelligence community. i think that's a fantastic example of how the community comes together through these mechanisms to provide valuable intelligence that helps set direction for policy whether additional legislation may be needed, where the resourcing is
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allocated. >> from what you know, and we don't have the acting undersecretary with us, but from you know and those who are joining us virtually speak of it as well, do you think the current administration is focussed enough on the tco threat? >> i know it is in fact a priority for them and there is work underway, and in particular, i'm aware of some very good discussions underway between dhs/ina, the office of policy and the operating components of dhs. >> i agree. but senator portman, one of the challenges at ina, there's 700 people in the entire organization. there are directors that have twice as many people. i think ina is trying to satisfy as many customers as it can, but it doesn't have the resources to spread itself as wide as it needs to. and so one of the things i think
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we should focus on is where should the priorities come from? where should the investments be made and resources to prioritize. >> that's a good point. that's one of the reasons i'm asking. we talked about domestic terrorism and we agree that's important. i think the tcos are from what we know, from open source information as well as others, that it's growing, and as a threat, and again, working its way into our communities. you talked about the relatively small number of people compared to others in the community. we have a real problem with attrition and morale. and both of you have been consumers of the intelligence and also working with the individuals. i want to hear from others who are on virtually as well, but miss cogswell, what do you think ina can do to deal with the consistently low morale and the lack of leadership, and i would
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hope that the administration, by the way, would nominate somebody for that undersecretary slot right away and get somebody in there willing to stick around for a while and provide leadership. >> i agree with you. consistency and leadership that will be there for a period of time is critically important. i would also say that assuming that this committee proceeds forward with some recommended changes, i know dhs will consider them as well, i'm hopeful they're built in a way that will pass the test of time, last for a period of years, much like the reviews after 9/11, we looked at how various activities occurred in the intelligence community. i would hope similar activities would play themselves at dhs/ina and across the homeland security enterprise. >> our report is going to be helpful this that regard as well. let my quickly end on one really comment and it's a question, but we don't have time to get into it. i see a contradiction in some of the things miss patel is
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advocating and others. we want more focus on domestic terrorism we've seen with regard to january 6th, we didn't have the information needed. it was online. there was plenty of threats of violence that were followed through on. and yet, you seem to be saying we shouldn't rely on online nflgs. it's unreliable. it's free speech. and violence is threatened to online doesn't mean it's really violence. that seems like a contradiction to our experience. can you comment on that quickly and to the extent we don't have time, maybe you could get into that in the second round. >>. >> i think you're on mute. if you could get off mute. >> i'm not on mute from my side. >> you're good now. we can hear you now. >> thank you for the question. i think we have to just define what we are looking for online. i'm not saying by any means that we can never tell that violence
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is going to occur or criminal activity is going to occur online. i think that there are probably ways that we can figure that out. what i am saying, though, is that we should start with the violence rather than focusing on different narratives and grievances which are widely shared. it's really a question of whether you go broad to narrow or whether you start with actual threats of violence, criminal activity, and then fan out from there to find other people who might be involved. >> thank you. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, senator portman. for the record for our folks online, senator portman started with a fundamental question, do we need ina given the rest of the intelligence community. we heard yes from the witnesses. i did not hear from the two witnesses online. >> i think ina plays a useful role in terms of its sharing of information in the networking
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that state, local, tribal, and territorial. but i guess i would say you know, that doesn't necessarily mean that that role could not be played by somebody else. and we know that the fbi, for example, does have gtts which perform ajgts which performs kind of a similar role in an investigative capacity. while i recognize the importance of the role, i guess i'm not as committed to it necessarily being in ina per se as the other commentators are. >> okay. we can pursue that further. mr. sena, yes or no for preferable? >> strong yes. >> strong yes, very good. senator hassan, you are recognized for your questions. >> thank you, chairman peters and ranking member portman. thank you to our witnesses for being here today and the service you've provided in multiple arenas. quickly, general taylor, i just wanted to give you a chance to comment on something that senator portman and ms. cogswell discussed. would it help overall employee
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morale in ina if there was a nominee to head the office? >> absolutely. and i would also say, senator, that ina's moral was in the dumps when i took over with secretary johnson. and we were able to improve morale by focusing on kind of basic taking care of people, things i've learned over 40 years in the military, and to get people focused on mission. so it's not an impossible task, but leadership needs to focus on it and make it a priority. >> thank you. i also want to follow up, senator portman talked with both of you, general taylor and ms. cogswell, about the role that ina plays in particularly combating tcos. but i would like you to expand a little bit on it. the office of intelligence and analysis is one of 17 entities within the larger intelligence
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community. so please take this opportunity to briefly talk about how ina can take advantage of its own relationships and authorities to inform its own activities and the activities of the intelligence community as a whole, and how is its relationship with state, local, and tribunal authorities different from other agencies? why don't we start with you, general taylor, then to ms. cogswell. >> as i said in my opening comments, ina is the only intelligence agency specifically chartered to provide intelligence to support our state, local, tribal, and territorial partners really as a result of 9/11 and the fact that we had people in this country who were about to commit a terrorist act and there was no way to loop in the 18,000 police organizations and 800,000 cops to understand what the nature of that threat is. and that's what ina and dhs has worked on over the years. that's what makes it unique.
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most of the ic cannot do work in the homeland. the fbi can from an investigative perspective and counterintelligence perspective and dhs/ina but the rest of the ic is precluded from the kind of specific intelligence work that ina does in the homeland. >> thank you. and ms. cogswell. >> i agree with everything general taylor said. i would add, it is partnered up with other elements that have the ability to deal with countering threats. the ability to wrap in policy and operational entities to help formulate direction and then work with counterparts at the state and local level, to exercise them, critically important. >> thank you. general taylor, i want to turn to the issue of cybersecurity for a minute. we've seen a series of high profile cybersecurity breaches
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and attacks against the federal government and critical infrastructure and we don't expect that these threats are going to diminish. how can the office of intelligence and analysis work with the cybersecurity and infrastructure security agency, other than known as cisa, to help prevent these attacks from happening? >> i think the most important part is, ina is already at cisa with about 30 of its analysts working directly with cisa in the computer security division to produce intelligence coming out of the einstein system. i believe cisa should have its own dedicated intelligence organization to assist not only ina but its director in formulating intelligence that's specific to the data that's collected by cisa. i also think that that would allow them a much more robust relationship with the national security agency. while nsa can't actually do domestic intelligence
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collection, its analytical capability i think is important to what our understanding of the cybersecurity risk is, and informing our partners in the federal government and the state and local and private sector, what actions they need to take to address those issues. >> thank you. now i want to turn to the issue of terrorism threats. and we've talked a little bit about it this morning, but general taylor, i am pleased that the office of intelligence and analysis recently announced a new effort dedicated to analyzing the threat from domestic terrorism. i also remain concerned about the threats posed by international terrorists and home-grown violent extremists. in your view do you believe the office of intelligence and analysis has the capacity to adequately monitor the various terrorist threats? >> absolutely, in conjunction with nctc and the fbi.
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this doesn't stand alone. this is a partnership between the intelligence community, fbi, and dhs in understanding the nature of the phenomenon we're seeing both in the homeland and overseas. and the international threat is not diminished. isis and al qaeda continue to threaten the u.s. and we need to keep a very clear eye on that threat as well as what we're seeing in the homeland as it's unfolded over the course of the last two or three years. >> thank you. ms. cogswell, you testified today about the importance of depoliticizing the intelligence process. what specific steps can the office of intelligence and analysis take to accomplish this goal and how can congress assist? >> thank you so much, senator, for the question. in particular, as i thought about this particular issue, i very much liken it to night after 9/11 where we had a whole
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of country kind of rethink about why we didn't see that coming, what was our failure of imagination on that front. we put in place a number of activities, different processes, post that threat. and part of it was starting with how we did the intelligence analysis itself. the ability to have different entities look at the problem from multiple different viewpoints, a diversity of viewpoints. the ability to have war gamings that looked at both the most likely scenario and the worst case scenario. the ability to have a community that knew how to receive that information and then take action based on the fact that there's a variety of potential options. even if they didn't think the worst case was likely, they at least had discussed it and prepared for it. i think there is real opportunity in this space to take some of those lessons learned and practices and apply them here. >> thank you. mr. chair, would it be already if i asked general taylor to quickly comment on that same issue, how to assist in depoliticizing the process?
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>> absolutely, proceed. >> politics has no place in intelligence. it's the anathema, in my view, of solid intelligence collection, analysis, and reporting. and so during my tenure, or actually during my 50 years of doing this, speaking truth to power is what intelligence officials are supposed to do. and despite politics, that's our job. and we need to do it and do it effectively. >> thank you very much. thank you, mr. chair. >> thank you, senator hassan. senator rosen, you are recognized for your questions. >> thank you, chair peters, ranking member portman. i appreciate the good questions and testimony already given today and for everyone's service to our nation. but general taylor, i want to move over to white supremacist
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extremists that we have. before january 6, dhs did not issue a threat assessment or joint intelligence bulletin specific to the event. on march 3, acting undersecretary of homeland security for intelligence melissa mislova told the committee, quote, more should have been done to understand the correlation between the information and the threat of violence, and what actions were warranted as a result. elizabeth newman, former high ranking dhs official, stated, and i quote again, but for reasons of fear, for reasons of fear, the department did not issue a formal report. so general taylor, can you speak to whether there's a current fear to report, either specifically towards domestic violent extremism as it turns into white supremacy, and/or more broadly to other pertinent threats that you might be assessing? >> thank you for that question, senator. i was not there, and therefore i
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can't get into the mind of the leadership of ina. what i would say is we have a process in this country around majors events, producing threat assessments culminating from the information that we've collected across the country. that didn't happen. why it didn't happen, i can't say what's in the mind of the leadership that was in charge at the time. but i find it difficult to accept the fact that that process was not applied to this event, as with all other events in our threat analysis process. >> thank you. like you said earlier, intelligence should be nonpolitical. because we know that the rise in anti-semitism is closely correlated with the spread of extremist ideologies. the adl's audit of anti-semitic
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incidents recorded 331 anti-semitic incidents in 2020 attributed to extremists. how do you think dhs intelligence could better account? is there something you might recommend for us to work with them to better account for this growing threat? >> dhs has partnerships across the country, in state and local law enforcement, and think tanks, and all sorts of organizations that are monitoring this type of activity. i think continuing to coordinate with those organizations and entities to get a better picture consistently of what's going on on the ground and what tactics, techniques, and procedures law enforcement can use, as well as the private sector. we have a relationship with religious organizations that we give information to about what these trends are and how they can protect themselves. so sustaining those relationships with up to date
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information about the nature, how the threat is unfolding, i think is the best prescription for success in defending those communities that are targeted. >> i think you're right, and we do have good partnerships, especially when it comes to our national fusion centers. i would like to ask mr. sena about the role that fusion centers, that they play in protecting americans from terrorism. in my home state of nevada, our fusion center has been at the forefront of tracking the domestic violent extremist threat, specifically emanating from militias. the southern nevada counterterrorism center also played an important role in addressing the 1 october shooting back in 2017, the deadliest mass shooting in modern american history. so on behalf of all of nevadans, i want to thank our fusion center, their tremendous service to our state and our community. but mr. sena, you stated you were surprised that fusion centers didn't receive any
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specific information ahead of january 6. why do you think that is, that no specific threat information was shared? and again, maybe you might speak to see if there's a fear to report across the department. >> and thank you very much, senator, for that question. when we look at the national network of fusion centers and our coordination effort with ina, especially on events that, as was said earlier, information is online. so there are a lot of restrictions on how information is collected and analyzed. and, you know, back in 2017, the national network of fusion centers in conjunction with the criminal coordinating council developed a real time open source analysis guidance and recommendations. but within those roles and responsibilities, just because it is hate speech doesn't mean it's extremist, violent speech. so being able to collect the information is one key element to this. having the personnel on it and
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make it part of the reporting requirements as a key issue we still continue to have. prior to january 6, we as a network, the national network of fusion centers, held a call the monday before the event because we were concerned. we were worried. and that call was directly related to a request from the director of the fusion center in washington, d.c. and we did have dhs/ina personnel on that call who did say they would have personnel on site at the fusion center because there's not always personnel available to help. we tried to build that network to share that information. and i was apprised that there wasn't anything developed at that time. but we were communicating in real time with them. so, you know, those that need to talk about the threat, need to share the information about the threat, we were actively working with the washington, d.c. fusion center to share information in real time. and the washington, d.c. fusion center had personnel with the u.s. capitol police to tried to
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make sure the information was shared in real time. there are some issues with that real time information sharing. one of the issues that we've got is that dhs/ina is a title l agency but they don't have the law enforcement authorities that other organizations have such as the fbi. and the washington, d.c. fusion center at the time was not considered a law enforcement agency. so they were restricted from having that law enforcement information. using that real time open source analysis guidance, you know, expanding the roles within our privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties policies that every fusion center has along with the policies that ina has, they need to have that law enforcement authority. they also need to have the capacity to access that data online to address those threats and push information out in a timely manner to every agency that needs it to address specific terrorism, domestic
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violent extremists and whatever major criminal threat is coming that we're seeing as a pre-indicator online. >> thank you for that answer. i'll look forward to following up with you on some things we can do to enhance the communication, the collaboration you're already doing, but make it a little bit more robust so that we can stop any of these violent attacks before they start. thank you, mr. chair. >> thank you, senator rosen. senator johnson, you are recognized for your questions. >> thank you, mr. chairman. general taylor, when you look at the title of the agency you once headed, it's intelligence and analysis. and from my standpoint, the analysis is really all about gathering that information, then trying to prioritize it. so we can adequately address the threats that face this nation. i thought ms. patel had a pretty good suggestion, that you start with the violence. pretty good way of prioritizing things. you know, what -- what is the
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greatest threat magnitude, how many people could lose their lives, how much damage could be done. i've always thought it was a little strange, the chairman is focusing on white supremacists. listen, i don't condone them, i condemn white supremacists, i condemn any act of violence, i don't categorize, right wing, left wing. general, do you have any idea how many deaths, how many murders occur from drug violence, gangs? >> i have no numbers, sir. but it's an epidemic across -- >> it's thousands, isn't it? >> it is, across -- >> it's thousands. i don't know what the current level of white supremacist killings, but i think it's in the hundreds. again, condemn it completely, but we're talking about thousands of drug-related
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murders every year. tens of thousands of drug-related overdoses. and now we're supposed to concentrate on domestic terrorism as the greatest threat? again, it's not. >> well -- >> right now "the new york times" reported 160 different nationalities of people being picked up on the southern border over the last couple of months. ms. cogswell, would you believe that's somewhat of a threat? >> i think that we have to continue to look at the processes by which people are showing up at the border. it is always possible that these networks and routes can be used by those who intend to do us harm. >> so when we are clogging up our system with close to 6,000 apprehensions a day, general taylor, you were in the administration, we had a humanitarian crisis, according to president obama, of 2,000 people being apprehended today.
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during 2018, 2019, it was a little over 4,000. in the last couple of minutes, it's been 6,000 people per day on average, 6,000 people. what happens to our system when it's clogged up with 6,000 people? doesn't that open up the border to additional drug trafficking? doesn't that create opportunities for transnational criminal organizations to exploit it? doesn't that open it up to other human trafficking of let's call it higher value targets to get in here that could create acts of violence? i mean, isn't that -- shouldn't we be concentrating on that as opposed to, last week it was surreal in this committee room, secretary mayorkas first of all blaming the previous administration for the crisis they created and quite honestly senator peters talking about, the numbers are coming down, we're getting this under control. no, 6,000 people a day, it isn't
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being abated at all. isn't that a threat, an enormous threat? >> absolutely, and it's a threat that we have to face along with the other threats that come at us from across the globe, from our international -- not just partners but international adversaries. look, in my view the myriad of threats facing this country are significant and broad, and not just for the department of homeland security, but for our state and local law enforcement, organizations for the fbi, the department of justice, and a coordinated effort to address -- >> again, my point being we really ought to concentrate on the numbers and the magnitude of the threat. listen, i condemn what happened here on january 6th. but i condemn as well the more than 500 riots that occurred through the summer including in kenosha, wisconsin. a couple, two dozen people
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murdered, 700 law enforcement officers injured, $200 million of property damaged. we all just want to move beyond that and let's just focus on january 6th. >> sir -- >> another thing that really concerns me is we just saw the colonial pipeline cyberattack. i don't know if that's a shot across the bow or that's a criminal organization a little out of control of their russian handlers and making going too far. i don't know what that is. but i do know that no administration, as long as i've been serving here, has taken literally the vulnerability of our electrical grid seriously, not when it comes to potential emp or gmd or cyberattack. we've seen what happened now in terms of vulnerability of the grid to some of this green energy in texas. in your time, both of you, ms. cogswell, and general taylor, was dhs/ina, were we looking at the vulnerability we are
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introducing into our infrastructure like our electrical grid with some of these green energy ideas? ms. cogswell, i'll start with you. >> i would say that both during my time with dhs/ina and at my time at tsa which as you know, has responsibility with relation to pipeline security, cyber was of considerable interest to us. we were focused on what we saw as the greatest potential threats, where their vulnerabilities were, how to work with the owners and operators to conduct assessments and help them improve their basic security pipeline. we didn't select one opportunity threat over the other. but looking at it holistically across the board. >> general taylor. >> [ inaudible ] critically important to the security of our country. 85% of the infrastructure of
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this country sits in private sector hands that makes the decisions about how to protect themselves. the sector coordinating councils that dhs has established over the course of the last 15 years have done yeoman work in working with those -- >> we haven't made any move whatsoever for example to purchase and put in place large power transformers that are incredibly vulnerable to emp attack or potentially gmd event. we're literally spending trillions of dollars and proposing spending trillions more and nobody is talking about doing something that prophylactic, that sensible, in terms of protecting our infrastructure. i'm sorry, i'm afraid we're focusing on domestic terrorism that might kill a couple of hundred people a year versus something that could really represent an existential threat. my only point is i think we're completely -- we have
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politicized these threat -- the threats we face and we're not keeping our eye on the ball on the things that really represent a real threat to this nation which is right now border security is probably the number one and we're ignoring that and denying reality. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, senator johnson. senator ossoff, you are recognized for your questions. >> thank you, mr. chairman, and thank you to our panel. general taylor, where is there overlap, based on your experience in government, between the role of ina and its responsibilities and the role and responsibilities of fbi's intelligence branch? >> i think that they're inextricably tied together. because of the nature of the fbi's authorities and the nature of ina's authorities, we can't do our job effectively without the fbi and the fbi relies on us to work with state and local
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partners on a consistent basis to make sure that intelligence becomes part of the overall intelligence that's available to the homeland for decisionmaking going forward. >> thank you, general, i appreciate that. you noted, quote, ina has differentiated itself by informing audiences not usually served by the intelligence community. but you also noted that ina's mission overlaps with that of other agencies. where is there redundancy in the roles and responsibilities of the agencies that have mission overlap with ina that could lead to inefficiency or a lack of clarity about who has principal responsibility for critical missions? >> i think when i wrote that article about mission overlap, it's complementary, not competitive. there are agencies that collect information that's of value to ina and ina's customers. rather than ina going out,
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trying to collect that information independently, they should collaborate with those agencies to make sure that information is available. so i don't see a whole lot of overlap, as long as we are leveraging the rest of the ic and our law enforcement partners to ensure we're not duplicating work that's already being effectively done by our partners. >> thank you, general taylor. how do you think ina and the ic more broadly can do a better job of ensuring that there isn't duplicative or conflicting effort? >> i think that's through governance of the intelligence community, governance of the department of homeland security, continual cooperation or collaboration with our partners in the fbi, and certainly getting feedback from our state and local and tribal and territorial customers of what they need and where those
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gaps are and addressing those gaps. >> how would you describe the breakdown of responsibility? let me ask the question this way. which agency has principal responsibility for developing and analyzing intelligence with respect to cybersecurity threats, that both public and private entities face? whose job is it above all others to develop intelligence with respect to cybersecurity threats, please, general? >> i think it's dhs has the primary responsibility in the homeland. that partnership is with cisa and ina. but i also believe that there's a strong need for a close and collaborative relationship with the national security agency and the cybersecurity directorate of our intelligence organizations to strengthen the analytical
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capability that informs our domestic intelligence efforts. >> thank you very much. ms. patel, you mentioned in your testimony the need for ina to adhere to, quote, the highest standards when it comes to the protection of civil rights and civil liberties. given the central role that ina plays sharing information not just within the federal government but also with state and local officials and private sector actors. you mentioned in your testimony instances during both democratic and republican administrations when in your view ina improperly collected or shared information about u.s. persons. i would like you to comment, please, on why you think there may be a tendency for ina to cross this line, in your view, and how congress might better define or constrain ina's roles, responsibilities, and
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authorities, to ensure that the civil rights and civil liberties of americans are probated. protected. >> so it's not just ina. most intelligence agencies run into this problem. we've certainly seen this starting with the church committee onwards, that there is always a temptation, there's mission creep. and bias always plays a role as well in intelligence collection. and these things are really quite challenging to solve. and i think the best way, really, is to really strengthen the civil rights and civil liberties mechanisms that are within dhs and to strengthen congressional oversight. if you look, there's a lot of different ways that you can do it. i've suggested a few in my testimony, including having dhs actually clear ina's analytical products as well as increasing
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audits of analytical products. there are additional ways in which that office can broadly be strengthened which have been proposed especially by people who previously worked in that office such as direct reporting lines to congress, greater congressional attention to the things that crcl produces, insisting on really specific reporting about crcl problems in dhs as opposed to very generic stuff which is what we've seen in a lot of the reporting. i think these are some of the ways in which ina can be more respectful of civil rights and civil liberties. >> thank you, ms. patel. with my remaining time, general taylor, would you like to comment in any way on ms. patel's analysis there? >> i think ms. patel's analysis is correct in the sense that strong civil rights, civil liberties oversight is key to effective intelligence collection and analysis in the
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homeland. i'm not sure i would agree that i need crcl to clear intelligence products. i would see that as the responsibility of the intelligence officer who produced it. but to ensure that that product does not violate civil rights, civil liberties, or the policies of the does not violate civil rights or civil liberties or the policies of the department would be my way to state it. >> thank you general. thank you mr. tell and i yield. >> senator sinema you are recognized thank you to the witnesses for being here. it is critical every decision dhs makes it is backed up with robust analysis. we cannot protect our communities and secure borders without a strong office of intelligence and analysis. especially true today when the nation and our state is overcoming a arizona are struggling to at
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overcome a pandemic while also dealing with a crisis at the ine border. my first question is a fornaly l taylor. the office of intelligence and h analysis is unique in the intelligence community with itst task to coordinate with federal as well as state and local government and law enforcement entities to protecthe our count from threats including pandemics. the covid-19 pandemic created challenges for many. chall based on your prior experience, how would the situation with the pandemic impact your recommendations to improve the overall effectiveness and ordina coordination for the officeti oh intelligence and analysis with state and local governments and law enforcement?? >> senator, i thank you for thee question. i'm not sure i understand what you're asking me to comment on. could you clarify that a bit?ng >> so now that we have a throu pandemic that we're working through, would that impact any n of your recommendations to improve the overall effectiveness and coordination of the office of intelligence f
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analysis withorce state and loc governments and with local law enforcement? >> look, i think pandemics and other sorts of disruptions occur every day.ow ina i don't think that changes the nature of how ina or a state and local partner approaches their business, maybe that's isolation and that sort of thing. but threats continue, threats continue during pandemics.llecn and we have to continue to focus our efforts on the collection of -- and analysis of those c threats, even during a period of pandemic when people out. are s at home and can't get out. our adversaries see that as a -- potentially an opportunity to be exploited. >> my next question is for mrs. cogswell. as was previously discussed, . transnational criminal [ inaudible ] poses a a crimin significant threat to our d hum national security, facilitating drug trafficking, human a
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trafficking, and violence at oua southwest border. our nation is also dealing with a migration challenge at the border with cvp reporting record numbers of encounters which of course diverts resources and focus. what steps can the office of intelligence and analysis take o to more effectively respond to a the ongoing ttco threats that will better engage law enforcement, cvp, and limited resources? the second question is does ef have the resources it needs to effectively address this threat? >> thank you, senator, for the question. with respect to the first element, i think that one of the most important elements that ina, especially through the mission center construct, can bring to this discussion is strt providing the opportunity and a floor for that strategic assessment, that sense of cross community across all the actorso tour inform strategic discussio, strategic policy decisions, lp strategic decisions about allocation between
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various threats as well as helping to l clarifyookf in tho discussions how best to look for evidence about the impact their actions are taking and whether or not those efforts have been successful. with respect to your second point on resourcing, frankly i d think there is a very good r sec question andon discussion to be hadd across a number of element of the intelligence and al env operational environment we'reiro talking about, to look at comher or not the resources are commensurate to the threats we're currently facing.threat and i thank you very much and ay look forward to further conversations by the committee in that regard.ououforw >> thank you. another question for you on this same general topic. we see a diverse population of migrants arrive at the southwest border in arizona including asylum seekers coming from dozens of countries.s. from thia what unique challenges does this present given your past experience in this area, what unique challenges does this migration a influx present nddhs from an
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intelligence and analysis perspective and what steps willg the office take to make sure criminals are not gaining entry into the united states? h respe >> thank you very much for the question. so with respect to theque first element, the unique aspects, pot dhs/ina i think very much is in a support role for the ongoing a individual elements, much more r so a focus in assistance, when we talk about the strategic picture and the dynamism.ndivida the threats posed within the b migrant communities themselves and how to best assess and scr screen, there is a robust screening architecture already in place. the key is ensuring there is the scre and resources dedicated and available to ensure that occur screening occurs.hings one of the things i found most over time is looking at not only how tools can be an
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assistance to the various entities performing these t functions but also l some of th analysis that goes along looking at the various encounters earn themselves, what can we learn, based on that in terms of routes, trends, practices, tactics being used, funding, acs thether or not they're using different types of travel documents that hadn't been previously identified. i these arede some of the most do important things thaty help us better deploy our resources and >>sets. >> thank you. have and a followup on this question for ms. patel. do you have specific recommendations to help maintain the right balance between privy security, privacy, and civil liberty concerns when it comes to the work that ina does to che combat these ngtcos and identift border challenges? >> thank you for the question, senator. i think i've tried to identify those which are basically that p think it's important that we cen focus on violence. my concern is that there is a te tendency to really broaden the
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aperture through which we're looking at threats, so we focus on grievances on social media. what i would suggest is that wet instead we identify violent actors, which we have done l certainly over the last several months as well, and then fan out from there, in an effort to really constrain ina to focus its work on the most dangerous people. tha >> thank you, it. appreciate thi mr. chairman, i do have another question for mr. sena but since my time has expired, i'll submit it for the record. i yield my time back and i thanm you for this a.hearing. w >> thank you, senator sinema. as we start wrapping up here, it have one more question here, and actually for mr. sena, we've talked a great deal here at thiq hearing about the unique aspecte of ina and how they share information with state, local, tribal, territorial governments. and with your work with fusion centers, of course, as the center of all of that. and you mentioned in your our o
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opening testimony that you had actions that you ely would recommend to a strengthen the sharing of relevant, timelyi actionable intelligence information across thosettee ssd centers. could you share with the committee some of those actionable ideas that we should consider? >> absolutely. you know, one of the biggest soe piecess is that lack of the gro personnel resources that are ons the ground, whether it's intelligence officers, collections managers, reports officers. we've got to have people in the local area, the local regions n across the country that have the capacity to share information io real time and to work closely sy with the fbi intelligence groupk and joint terrorism task force.. and that fusion center environment. we need technology. right now the homeland security information network is riding ot technology that is, you know, in some cases 18 years old. you know, we need that capacityt to have toolsha and resources te
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are easily accessible by all of our leaders out there, not just the folks in the fusion centersn but all of our partners. we also need folks that are on the ground to help support that. privacy, civil rights, civil ole liberties training. ina can play a pivotal role in that capability. and we also need the capacity to have personnel on the ground, that when we run into, whether c it's bureaucratic or whatever the hurdles may be. the fact that we have centers ro right now that can'tse get the critical data they need to prevent terrorist acts, to abym prevent major criminal threats, it's al0abysmal. don here we are almost 20 years later and we don't have the capacity. so having advocates there, i often say that i get more done by having a dhs regional doors director three doors d down frof me than i do with many of the calls that we have in washington, d.c., because that's itere the rubber meets the road, that's where things get done,
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it's done at the local level because that's where the threatt are. i see that formation of ina pivoting what has happened over the last, you know, number of years, where the focus has beenn not as much on the state, local, and tribal territorial partners who are at the local level, and looking at more of a larger intelligence community framework. there are lots of folks in the e intelligence community who do a great job within their avenues of what they do. but the real strength of dhs/ina is with their state, local, tribal, and territorial partners. that's where the information isa at, that's where the threat is,r that's where we're dealing with the opioid andnd overdose epidemics. tran dealing with transnational criminal organizations. that's where we're dealing with domestic violent extremists and every other violent extremists. wed having the personnel there, we can't do this with a little n over a hundred people.e cente we've got to have more folks in the field. i agree, the mission center idea is great. but it needs to incorporate those state, local, tribal,
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territorial partners to be effective. and b ina, in their unique roled has the ability to be our has t champion, for that state, localw tribal, territorial community. i think that's where they need conge uplifted to. they need the resources from congress to make sure that theye have capacity to achieve what they should be and what they were designed to be after september 11th. >> thank you, sir. >> thank you. thank you for that answer. and thank you, again, to all of our witnesses here today for sem giving us your time and your expertise this morning. this hearing is a part of our committee's bipartisan effort to examine the security and t intelligence failures on januar6 6, as well as to identify what reforms are needed to address a thet rising threat of domestic terrorism generally across the country. our witnesses today focused on the importance of ina and how id needs to provide dhs and its lartners, state and local governments, law enforcement,
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and the private sector, with more actionable intelligence. we also discussed the unique position of ina as a domestic focused intelligence agency and the need to ensure that we protect the privacy, the civil rights and the to civil liberti as they workkcivi to execute th mission. i certainly look forward to ng w working with my colleagues as we continue to examine how to combat the rise of domestic terrorism, including white nationalism and antigovernment violence. and certainly ina is a member of the intelligence community that is uniquely situated and suited to interact with both state and local enforcement, focus on strategic issues rather than specific law enforcement investigations, and leverage its existing domestic authorities to help us address that threat. so with that, the hearing recore will remain open for 15 days
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until june 2 for submission of d statements and questions for the record. this hearing is now adjourned.. [inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] the house administration committee is reviewing possible changes to the u.s. capitol police following the january 6 attack on the u.s. capitol. watch live today starting at 3:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span3, online at, or you can listen with the free c-span radio app. american history tv on c-span3. exploring the people and events that tell the american story every weekend. saturday at 2:00 p.m. eastern, a
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discussion about ruth bader ginsburg and the vmi supreme court case that challenged virginia military institute's male-only admission policy. saturday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern, alison parker details activist mary church terrell's 1923 fight against the united daughter of the confederacy's attempt to erect a black mammy statue in washington, d.c., and how she prevent the statue from being built. sunday at 6:00 p.m. eastern, explore the shaw memorial at the national gallery of art dedicated to general gould shaw and one of the first african-american units. and sunday, 8:00 p.m. eastern, a look at the george h.w. bush presidential library and museum and how the complex has entered a new phase. exploring the american story. watch american history tv, this
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weekend on c-span3. go to for the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic. if you miss our live coverage, it's easy to quickly find the latest briefings and the biden administration's response. use the interactive gallery of maps to follow the cases in the u.s. and worldwide. go to the acting head of the transportation security administration testified before congress on tsa's budget. new airport screening technology. domestic terrorist threats. and aviation security amid the coronavirus pandemic. this hearing is just under an hour and 30 minutes. the subcommittee on homeland security will come to order. during today's virtual hearing, members are responsible for mut


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