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Fixing the FactsNational Security and the Politics of Intelligence$
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Joshua Rovner

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801448294

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801448294.001.0001

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A Basic Problem

A Basic Problem

The Uncertain Role of Intelligence in National Security

(p.1) [1] A Basic Problem
Fixing the Facts

Joshua Rovner

Cornell University Press

This chapter first sets out the book's focus, namely the relationship between intelligence and strategy. Broadly, it addresses the question of how intelligence informs state perceptions and strategic decisions. Specifically, it explains how policymakers respond to intelligence estimates about real and imagined threats to national security. The chapter then cites the lack of attention given to the subject of intelligence–policy relations and then infers three hypotheses on politicization from the literature on intelligence–policy relations: two are based on the concept of proximity, i.e. personal proximity and organizational proximity; the third is based on how leaders exploit bureaucratic dependence to manipulate intelligence products.

Keywords:   intelligence agencies, national security, security threats, intelligence–policy relations, politicization, proximity

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