There has been a lot of media coverage on the news recently on the adverse impact of the government shutdown in Washington D.C.
Much of the media focus has been on the closure of National parks and monuments in the Nation’s capitol and around the country. While this is a very serious situation, we sought to look at how the shutdown is affecting national security concerns as well.
This is an issue that the so called “main stream” (entertainment based, corporate owned) media in this country hasn’t really focused on for whatever reason.
Se we visited the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ONDI) and found this message plastered across the front of its website:
“As a result of a lapse in appropriations, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence is operating at reduced capacity. Furloughed employees are not permitted access to Intelligence Community facilities and are not authorized to engage in work related activities without prior approval. The furlough will last until Congress passes and the President signs an appropriations bill that provides funding for ODNI programs and operations. The Office of Personnel Management will announce the end of the shutdown and the return to normal operations” (source: ONDI http://www.dni.gov).
Reading this sent chills down my spine!
The ONDI is responsible for, among other things, the lion’s share of all “intelligence integration and information sharing activities” deemed vital to the national security interests of the United States.
The ODNI in fact sets the strategic direction and priorities for all national intelligence resources and capabilities.
As such its importance cannot be understated.
It’s integrate intelligence analysis and collection to inform decision makers from the White House to the foxhole.
It’s advance cutting-edge capabilities provides the U.S. with a strategic global intelligence advantage above anything any other nation (or combination of nations) on earth currently possess. It’s functioning is deemed vital in the fight against everything from the war on global terrorism to our combat operations in Afghanistan.
Needless to say all this has been adversely compromised as it were, because of the government shutdown, more specifically the lack of necessary budget appropriations to this agency.
We contacted the ODNI press office for comment in this matter and officials refused that request.