ment were available for a mission, Toth said. “None of
the information was integrated.”
The system was put to the test in March during the
relief mission to Japan following the earthquake, tsu-
namis and subsequent nuclear power plant meltdown.
“C2RPC was stood up within 48 hours to provide
situational awareness for the joint task force during
Operation Tomodachi,” Toth said.
Besides identifying equipment that could be
deployed to Japan, C2RPC provided situational
updates, such as radiation levels near the stricken
power plant, he said.
To Leigher, systems such as C2RPC are an early step
toward what he sees as the future of intelligence —
automated systems that can analyze and fuse enough
intelligence information from multiple sources to
begin to predict events.
With the right automated analysis and fusion “you
could see an attack like the one on the USS Cole as it
unfolds,” he said.
Cole was struck by suicide bombers in an explosive-laden small boat in 2000 when it moored in Aden harbor, Yemen, to refuel. The attack killed 17 Sailors and
“There were signals in the environment that we
understood — in retrospect — as indicators” of the
coming attack, Leigher said.
Various agencies had signals intelligence from intercepted phone calls and human intelligence reports of
increased al-Qaida activity in Aden harbor before the
attack. Such intelligence could have provided a better
warning if it had been possible to see it “in aggregate
instead of in parallel,” he said.
Eleven years later, technology appears to be moving
toward making that possible — but not fast enough.
“We’re pretty good at the next iteration of technology,” Leigher said. “But this is an area where we really
need to look for truly innovative leaps, not iterative
“I think the technology is there,” he said. “But we
need to think outside of analytical paradigms that were
developed in a different era.” ;
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