Threat and Hazard Components of Somalian Famine: A Case Study
In the December 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines the ongoing famine in Somalia as a case study to highlight the intermingling of man-made threats with naturally occurring hazards as a potent combination often leading to increasingly severe consequences. The UN estimates 3.2 million Somalis need immediate life-saving assistance. In seeking to understand this crisis, there are multiple threats and hazards that must be addressed. Drought, climate change, and land use are all hazards contributing to the current situation. Additionally, the impacts of political, military, and terrorist groups must be considered.
Situation Update: Chinese Space Ambitions
In the November 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines Chinese space ambitions along with recent developments and advancements in China’s space technology, infrastructure, and capabilities. For the last five years China has seen a rapid and innovative progress in space related capabilities and has expanded its space operations into South America and Africa. As seen in the paper’s case studies, China’s space program is rapidly advancing as it seeks to be the main competitor to the U.S. in space capabilities. This rapid advancement in space capabilities by China has contributed to increased security concerns by the U.S. DoD. This paper provides insight into China’s current space capabilities, ambitions, and future goals as it seeks to surpass the U.S. in the space industry.
An Introduction to Superfund Sites
In the October 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines the roots of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, now commonly know as “Superfund.” The long-term impacts of designated Superfund sites have been apparent for decades and will continue to be seen, even as the clean-up and restoration process is underway. This paper will provide an introduction to what a Superfund site designation means, the subsequent legal requirements, and the effects that may be seen over time or are already observed.
Accidental Disruption: An Overview
In the September 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines the subject of accidental disruptions affecting critical systems and infrastructure. An accidental disruption is defined as the unintentional failure or loss of technology, systems, and utilities due to aging equipment and infrastructure, harsh environmental conditions coupled with inadequate maintenance, negligence, or other accidental events. As seen in the paper’s case studies, accidental disruptions can have significant impacts to the environment, as well as public health and safety. This paper provides a baseline understanding of accidental disruptions and their effects.
Foreign Influence on Protest Activity: An Overview
In the August 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines the relationship between social media, protest activity, and foreign adversaries. Adversaries such as Russia, China, and Iran have bolstered misinformation, disinformation, and malinformation on social media to create chaos, confusion, and division in the U.S. These social media strategies, which generate a more intense and divisive virtual environment, have sought to make U.S. society more polarized, influence U.S. political decisions, delegitimate democratic institutions, and create confusion. This promotion of divisiveness by foreign adversaries has contributed to the formation of protests, rallies, and other similar gatherings in the U.S.
Hazard Seasonality: An Overview
In the July 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines the subject of meteorological hazard seasonality as it relates to the emergency management process. An understanding of hazard seasons allows planners to predict peak occurrences and drive active risk reduction processes. Additionally, hazard seasonality can be affected by short-term trends such El Niño/ La Niña, as well as the long-term impacts of climate change. This paper provides a brief overview of hazard seasonality (as well as case studies related to flooding and wildfires) in order to enhance stakeholders’ understanding.
Nation-State Research Activities as a Deniable Cover for Espionage
In the June 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines the foreign nation-state practice of utilizing legitimate scientific/research objectives, programs, and vessels as a deniable cover for espionage activities. U.S. adversaries such as Russia and China have been accused of such activity in recent years, to include the suspected tapping of undersea communications cables and the placing of undersea acoustic sensors near U.S. Naval hubs. In many of these cases, “dual-use” technology capable of both scientific and intelligence-gathering purposes was utilized, allowing deniability for U.S. adversaries.
State-Sanctioned Hacking Groups: An Overview
In the April 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines state-sanctioned hacking groups, which can serve the objectives of nation-state adversaries, without explicit direction, while receiving safe haven and (likely) tacit approval from their host nation. Groups such as this were involved in the 2021 ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline, as well as the defacing of a U.S. government website following the killing of a high-profile Iranian military leader by the U.S.
Terrorist Targeting of U.S. Utilities Infrastructure
In the March 2022 edition of the White Paper Series, the Intelligence & Analysis Division examines the targeting of utilities infrastructure by transnational and domestic terrorist groups and individuals. Utilities infrastructure remains a relatively soft target, which if exploited by terrorists could have devastating effects on public health and safety, as well as economic impacts.