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National Military Joint Intelligence Center

National Military Joint Intelligence Center

The United States National Military Joint Intelligence Center (NMJIC), sometimes called the National Military Joint Intelligence Alert Center, is the nerve center for defense intelligence activities in support of joint military operations. Located physically and administratively close to the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS), NMJIC is also the fullest realization of the joint intelligence center (JIC) principle that developed in the last days of the Cold War.

The Fleet Intelligence Center falls victim to changing views. One of the most significant agencies absorbed into the then-new NMJIC during the early 1990s was the United States Navy Fleet Intelligence Center (FIC). With precedents dating back to the early days of World War II, the FIC operated on shore and provided United States fleets with intelligence support. Out of these wartime foundations emerged Fleet Intelligence Center Pacific (FICPAC) in 1955, FIC Europe (FICEUR) in 1960, and FIC Atlantic (FICLANT) in 1968.

The last two merged in 1974 to form FIC Europe-Atlantic (FICEURLANT). FICPAC played a critical role in providing intelligence to United States Navy and Marine forces in Vietnam. With more than 500 active-duty personnel by 1991, FICEURLANT was the largest of the FIC units. As it turned out, 1991 also marked the end of FIC, which fell victim to changing times. However, the army and air force counterpartsthe Analysis and Control Element and the Air Intelligence Squadron respectivelymanaged to survive the change.

As for the causes of this change, this emerged in the 1980s, a period that saw the rise in popularity of the unified command principle among United States military circles. According to this principle, unified or area commanders in chief would direct all United States military operations in a given geographic area. For their intelligence needs, they relied on the JIC. The latter served as J-2, or joint intelligence, making it a "one-stop shop" for the intelligence needs of a given combatant command.

The nerve center of joint intelligence. At the national level, the function of J-2 is performed by the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), which oversees NMJIC. The latter in turn supports JCS, serving their needs, as well as those of unified commanders. NMJIC maintains a focus on global indications and warnings (I&W; intelligence that relates to time-sensitive information involving potential threats); operational intelligence (intelligence involved in military planning for a particular theatre or area of operations); national targeting support (prioritizing areas for possible action); production of reports; and database management.

Located alongside the National Military Command Center and the Defense Collection Coordination Center, NMJIC monitors worldwide political and military developments on a 24-hour basis, with an eye toward crises that may require United States intervention. Among the components of NMJIC are an alert center, warning and crisis analysts, targeting specialists, and a network of intelligence personnel, some of whom may deploy in support of war operations. In addition to DIA and those organizations, such as FIC, that have been subordinated to NMJIC, the center also includes representatives of the National Security Agency, Central Intelligence Agency, State Department, Defense Mapping Agency, and other United States military services.

FURTHER READING:

BOOKS:

Richelson, Jeffrey T. The United States Intelligence Community, 3rd ed. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1995.

ELECTRONIC:

Appendix A: Joint and Naval Intelligence Organizations That Support Naval Operations. Navy Warfare Development Command. <http://www.nwdc.navy.mil/Library/Documents/NDPs/ndp2/ndp20007.htm> (January 22,2003).

SEE ALSO

DIA (Defense Intelligence Agency)
Joint Chiefs of Staff, United States

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