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The Asia Times on CIA Reform:

This article treats a perceived collapse of the Central Intelligence Agency, and the hope for its recovery under Porter Goss. They are "shading to cautiously optimistic" on his prospects.

What do Goss and his new DDO Jose Rodriguez aim to do to fix the clandestine service? "More stars on the wall," said a DO officer, referring to the stars placed on the wall of the lobby in CIA headquarters at Langley for every CIA officer killed in the line of duty. What must change, according to Goss, is the agency's "culture of risk aversion". He wants the DO to "launch a more aggressive campaign to use undercover officers to penetrate terrorist groups and hostile governments" - a high-risk strategy to increase drastically the number and use of non-official cover (NOC) officers instead of the current practice of deploying the majority of DO officers as diplomats assigned to US embassies with the benefit of diplomatic immunity as they attempt to recruit and gather intelligence from foreigners.
That is what we need the CIA's Directorate of Operations to do. The rest of the article outlines how the culture of risk aversion came into place, and why.

It is not hard to understand. Those nameless stars represent a sacrifice as final and terrible as the one represented by the Tomb of the Unknowns. Yet these risks must be run, if the agency is to provide us with the intelligence we need to make right decisions and correct assessments.

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