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Intelligence Division


Intelligence Division

Deputy Commandant for Information


Fischer, David Hackett (1970). Historian's Fallacies: Towards a Logic of Historical Thought. .New York: NY Harper & Row Publishers.  While written for professional historians, the pitfalls this accomplished researcher and writer points out are very relevant to intelligence analysts. This work dovetails neatly with Browne and Keeley's, Asking the Right Question and Walton's Informal Logic and greatly expands and illuminates  upon both with additional detail and nuanced treatments.  (Maj, CWO4, IA3)

Neustadt, Richard E., May,  Ernest R.  (1988). Thinking in Time: The Uses of History for Decision Makers.  New York: The Free Press.  Given that military leaders are just as prone to reason from historical analogy as are political figures, this book provides practical warnings and guidance for those intelligence analysts arguing their perspectives from such a standpoint. While others have attempted to build upon this work (e.g., Jeffrey Record's Making War, Thinking History), Neustadt's and May's works remains the best.  (LtCol, CWO5, IA4)

Huff, Darrell (1993). How to Lie With Statistics. New York, NY, W.W. Norton.  Originally published in 1954, this slim layman's primer on statistics has not been superseded. The author explains how statistics are often misused, misinterpreted, and misunderstood even when accurately applied. While advanced analysts will  hunger for more, this volume provides enough orientation to spot the most common pitfalls. (Cpl, 2ndLt, WO, IA1)

Khalsa, Sundri (2004).  Forecasting Terrorism. . Scarecrow Press.  This very concise work provides a customized structured methodology tracking 68 indicators of terrorist activity in hypotheses matrices that are updated daily using raw reporting. Such a method allows quick analysis and assessment for each location of interest for threat, risk, and vulnerability, and helps in providing analytical safeguards against most of the common warning pitfalls.  (Sgt, 1stLt, CWO2, IA2).

Kam, Ephraim. (1988). Surprise Attack: The Victim's Perspective. Cambridge, MA Harvard University Press.  As with most intelligence books on analysis, this work deals at the operational and strategic levels of war. But the challenges intelligence analysts must deal with at these levels mirror those of the tactical intelligence specialists, especially in the face of enemy deception. This work well synthesizes earlier academic work on the subject and is the best one for understanding the theoretical relationships between intelligence and surprise.  (MSgt/1stSgt, Maj, CWO4, IA3)

Grabow, Cynthia. (2004). Anticipating Surprise: Analysis for Strategic Warning. Lanham, MD, University Press of America, Incorporated.  While the focus here is on strategic intelligence supporting national-level decision-making, Grabow continues where Ephram Kam leaves off. Not only is the modern military indication-based system discussed, but also the more ambiguous nature of political indicators and probability weighting of confidence gets detailed treatment. Lastly, her description of influences on policymakers contains a bit more depth. That said, this book is best read BEFORE Kam.  (SSgt, 1stLt, CWO2, IA2)

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