REMARKS OF WILLIAM J. CASEY DIRECTOR OF CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE BEFORE THE JEWISH

Created: 5/15/1986

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

REMARKS OF WILLIAM J- CASEY

DIRECTOR OF CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE

before

THE AMERICAN JEWISH COMMITTEE

Thursday,5

J. W. Marriott Hotel Washington, D- C-

Ladies and Gentlemen,reat privilege for me to be speaking beforeh anniversary of the annual meeting of the American Jewish Committee- Thisave been asked to speak to the problem of international terrorscourge that increasingly is beginning to dominate our lives and times- butegin, let me say that itpecial privilege to appearroup that has done so much itself to fight this epidemic of violence- now that rabbi tanenbaum and the aherican jewish committee have been at the forefront of the effort tor0ad national constituency in this country in support of the administration- let me tell you that those of us inside government need your help and appreciate your efforts. terrorismancer that is spreading- 3 henternational terrorist incidents; last year the number rose to- the united states and its friends and allies continue to be the primary targets- the number of persons killed or injured5ore than any other year, more even than the terrible3 when the us and french contingents of the peacekeeping force in Lebanon were bombed- The rising casualty rate reflects the increased use of large bombs by terrorists as well as greater willingness to harm innocent bystanders through indiscriminate attacks-

The capability of the terrorist to kill, maim, kidnap, and torture his victims has been enormously enhanced by state sponsorship. Libya, Syria, and Iran use terrorism as an instrument of foreign policy- they hire and support established terrorist organizations, of which there are many around the world These countries make their officials, their embassies, theiti diplomatic pouches, their communications channels, and their territory as safehaven for these criminals available to plan, direct and execute bombings, assassinations, kidnappings and other terrorist operations-

They have operated largely in the Middle East and in Europe-Today they are now spreading their wings into this hemisphere-

the threat to us facilities, personnel, and interests is particularly high in colombia, ecuador, and peru where strongly anti-us terrorist groups are active-

The link between Libyan- and Cuban-sponsored terrorism and nlcaraguan-sponsored terrorism is large and growing larger-For some years, the Libyans have been supporting the Sandinista government in nicaragua with something0 millionear- You'll remember how Nicaraguan-supporteo insurgents inSalvador killed our Marinesafe in the capital of that country-

He now see Nicaragua training young men for violence and subversion, sending them into SouthColombia for the attack on the Palace of Justice in Bogota and as far south as Chile- Young men from Latin American countries are being sent to Libya for training in the terrorist camps there and then brought back to be planted among the- population in* Central America, in Venezuela, in Ecuador- If the Sandinista regime consolidates itself, we can expect Managua to become the Beirut of the Western Hemisphere-

Thereoviet connection and support for all this-While some refer to that connection as shadowy, it seems very real to me- Theave just mentioned are not necessarily close allies to moscow, but theyundamental hostility to the West- The Soviets, who hold no moral objections to the use of terrorism and see much of the unrest it creates as ultimately beneficial to their foreign policy objectives, do not participate in any international efforts to block terrorism or to join in multilateral efforts to combat it- in backing revolutionary causes against establishedt isatter of indifference to the soviets whether terrorist tactics are used as long as the groups that commit these acts attack non-soviet or non-bloc and soviet support for international terrorism comes packagedariety of ways ranging from direct training of terrorist personnel to political backing and funding for states actively engaged in sponsoring terrorism.

The East Europeans, almost certainly with Soviet knowledge and support, provide safehaven, transit privileges and movement of weapons bombs for terrorists- bulgaria's state trading organization ki ntex'-which istate smuggling open" "andomparable organization omni pol are among the most prominent companieseventually have appeared in terrorist hands-

Let me now turn to the problems US intelligence analysts and counterterrorism policymakers as they seek to tackle the

problem of international terrorism- you've all heard an endless stream of commentary callinguch greater intelligence effort against terrorism- ouldn't agree more-But it is also important for you to know that we haveemarkable amount of progress over the past few years-

in order to prevent terrorist plans or disrupt their activities, we need information about them- but the very nature of terrorist groups and their activities makes this task extremely complicated- terrorist groups are very small, makingery difficult task for police or intelligence agents- moreover, the 0peratin6 life of any single group of terrorists is often no moreew years-Likewise, typical terrorist leaderselatively short business life.

so how do we go about it? flrst, we are acquiring as much information as we can about terrorist groups including modus operandi, organizational structure, personnel support, financial and communications arrangements, and their relationships with other groups or state much of this is just hard research,arge data base and* attempting to fill in the gaps- it is not very glamorous and people whot do not capture the headlines- but it is the foundation upon which the us counterterrorism effortContinuing collection and analysis enables us to improve our ability to detect trends in terrorism operations, upgrade security in areas most likely at risk, and determine vulnerabilities of terrorist groups- we have put inystem of rapid communications to gather assessments, have reports tested by experts throughout our government, and pass conclusions and warnings quickly to the point of the

Action based on our intelligence, along with that of other friendly countries including moderate arab governments, has been taken toreat many planned terrorist attacks

around the world- ThE rate of effective warning is increasing,

rising touring the month of april this year -

Sometimes we fall just heart-breakingly short of success as was the case with the berlin nightclub bombing last month-

YOU HAVE HEARD THE PRESIDENT's STATEMENT OUTLINING THE EVIDENCE

for the Libyan complicity in theN6- He also have compelling evidence of libyan involvement in attempts to attack other us targets, several of which were designed to cause maximum casualties similar to the berlin bombing*

expelled two members of the Libyan People's Bureau in Paris for their involvementlanned attack on visa applicants waiting in line at the us Embassy-

rance subsequently expelled two disgruntled Fatah Forceembers recruited by Libya to conduct another operation against the united states in paris-

In earlyibyan-inspired plot to attack the us Embassy in Beirut was aborted whenm rocket exploded on launch-

Turkish police in late March arrested two Tunisians in Istanbul who claimed they were planning on behalf of the Libyans to use explosivess target in Turkey; the operation was planned to inflict heavy casualties-All IN ALL, NEARLY IBYAN DIPLOMATS HAVE BEEN expelled RECENTLY FROM SPAIN, ITALY, FRANCE AND WEST Ih FACT, SO FAR THIS YEAR WE HAVE REPORTS OF WELL OVER lBYAN" ASSOCIATED THREATS, INCLUDING SURVEILLANCE OF PLANNED ATTACKS AGAINST us PERSONNEL AND FACILITIES IN EUROPE, AFRICA AND asia-

Together with the intelligence and security services of friendly countries, we haveorldwidet network which functions through intelligence exchanges, training and technical support and joint operations-the terrorists are everywhere, moving silently across borders and striking with as much stealth and surprise as they can .

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This apparatus must be able to follow them, pass word

on their movements, pick them up or abort their plans, or otherwise defend against them-

he have become increasingly effective in this and our capabilities are improving- I take this occasion toecessary dialogue on how we can overcome what I consider the greatest single impediment to protecting our interests and our citizens from the scourge of international terrorism..

IN recent years, publication of classified information by the media has destroyed or seriously damaged intelligence sources of the highest value- every method we have of acquiring !NTELL1GENCE"0UR agents, our relationships with other security services, our photographic and electronic capabilities, the information we get from communi cat ions"has been damaged by the publication of unauthorized disclosures-

in recent weeks and months, lood of information and misinformation has appeared in print and on the air waves-

you've all seen it- before the president spoke to our people and told then about the conclusive evidence that we had about Libyan direction of the attack on Allied soldiers in the Berlin nightclub, major newspapers and news magazines published that Libyan communications were being read- The Libyans stopped using those communications and this is bound to puteaceful citizens in jeopardy- thisevere problem we must address if our fight against terrorism is to succeed-

thiselicate and critical problem,ant to be very careful and precise in addressing it- let me first sayield to no one in my respect for the media and the people who work for it and for their function in our society-

It has been my OWN PERSONAL ACTIVITY IN NEWSPAPERS, BOOKS, MAGAZINES AND ELECTRONIC BROADCAST ING THAT HAS GIVEN ME THE CAPITAL TO RUN A PERSONAL DEFICIT FOR MORE THAN TEN YEARS IN ORDER TO SERVE OUR COUNTRY- I RESPECT THE DILIGENCE AND INGENUITY OF THE WORKING PRESS IN GATHERING AND PUBLISHING NEWS AND APPLAUD ITS EXPOSURE OF WASTE, INEFFICIENCY, CORRUPTION AND OTHER MISCONDUCT. IN SHORT, I SPEAK FROMEARS OF EXPERIENCERIEND, PARTICIPANT AND SUPPORTER OF THE MEDIA-

I HAVE TWO POINTS THAT 1 FEEL 1 MUST MAKE AT THIS TIME

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IN ORDER TO DISCHARGE THE OBLIGATION SPECIFICALLY PLACED ON ME BY THE LAW OF OUR LAND TO PROTECT INTELLIGENCE SOURCES AND METHODS-

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Put very simply, they are first that the media like everyone else must adhere to the law- second, all of us have responsibilities to balance in carrying out its mission-In the face of the new dangerous threats that he face from international terrorism, now is the time to mutually address those responsibilities togethererious and measured hay-Congress, shortly after it established the National Security Agency to gather signals intelligence,0ah hh1ch prohibits the publication of information about communications intelligence- there has been widespread violation of that lah over recent heeks and months- much damage has been done-Kay Graham, the publisher of THE WASHINGTON POST,ecent

very thoughtful and constructive speech cited the kind of damage which he have sustained- she toldelevision networkolumn 1ST had obtained information that he were reading the messages of people arranging the bombing of the

u-s- Embassy in Beirut- Shortly after this public disclosure,

that traffic stopped- Th is undermined our efforts to capture

the terrorist leaders andource of information about future attacks-

Where there already has been public disclosure about communications intelligence, the law has been violated but the milk has been spilled- ould not, therefore, at this time favor action for these past offenses- trongly believe that if we are to protect our securityation

and the safety of our citizens in this age of international terrorism and intercontinental missiles, the law now on the books toery narrow segment of information, that dealing with communications intelligence, must now be enforced-

There are other large areas of information about our intelligence, our national security and our relationships with other nations which can and frequently should be published without violating any law- but there are situations in which many of us believe thereesponsibility, before rushing into print or onto the air waves, to weigh and consider the danger to life and limb of our citizens and others and to the international relationships and the reputation for reliability of our nation-

the temptation to go beyond the facts and piece together and stretch fragments of information in order toublishable story and sometimes in order to sensationalize is

a dangerous It can and has cost lives- |t can wrongly

impair reputations and disrupt relationships critical' to our national interest. let me illustraterueell-known reporter called the information officer at the central intelligence agency and told him hetory that we had helped the security serviceriendly nationar bombing of the headquarterserrorist organization which had resulted in death or injuryarge

in

number of residents and passers'by in the neighborhood- our officer told the reporter that his information was incorrect and that the cia had no knowledge of and no involvement, direct or indirect, in the attack- He was also told that if he charged

us involvement, he might wind up with blood on his hands- the story was run in his newspaper- it got around thebalsen of us involvement in the bomb ing-

The House Select Committee on Intelligence investigated the matter and concluded that *no complicity of direct or indirect involvement can be established with respect to theombing in Beirut-* But this came too late! onth after the misleading story was published to the world, terroristsha plane andassengers and took them to Beirut- Hhen the hijackers shot and killed an American serviceman, they claimed it to be in retaliation for the bombing in beirut in which the reporter had involved the cia after the cia's spokesman had denied to him any involvement, direct or indirect, in the bomb ing-

In putting this story together, the reporters had talks

with officials in the executive branch and members and staffers of the Congress about collateral hatters including our long-term practice of providing training and technical assistance to the security services of other countries in order to improve our capabilities and cooperation on counterintelligence and counter-terrorism-

This kind of assistance goes back many years- We are doing more of this to cope with today's intensified terrorist threat-This does not make us responsible for the consequences of law enforcement activities in other countries-

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The reporter justified publishing their story by taking the view that this longstanding training somehow made us responsiblearticular action of the organization even though he had no knowledge of the action and no contact with those who carried it out.

Thisragic story. There is enough blame for everyone involved to share- government officials talked more than the rules permit on classified matters- the reporters ignored accurate information with which they were carefully, clearly, and honestly provided- they stretched the implications of scraps of information they gathered- we at the cia either did not have time or were not fast enough in bringing the matter to the attention of management at the newspaper-

We all must do better- Thisangerous and unpredictable world in which all of us must move with caution and responsibility Certainly any responsible person would want to exercise special care to avoid setting in motion this kind of sequence of events-

As he see it, Mrs- Graham stated correctly the responsibility

of the media in such matters in her recent talk - she called forcooperation hherever possible betheen the media and the authorities. when the media obtains especially sensitive information, he are willing to tell the authorities hhat we have learned and what he plan to and hhile* reserving the right to make the final decision ourselves, he are anxious to listen to arguments about hhy information should not be aired- me media; hant to do nothing that hould endanger human life or national security- We are willing to cooperate hith the authorities in withholding information that could have those consequences."

WE have been gratified by the readiness of many reporters and editors to carefully consider sometimes withholding publication of information which could jeopardize national interests or to treat or present a story anner which meets the public need, yet minimizes potential damage to intelligence sources-the trick is to recognize the potential for damage and to consult on how it might be minimized- we are always ready and available on short notice to help on that-

i hasten to add, however, that the first line of defense and the most effective way of preventing these types of leaks is to increase discipline within the government itself-

The inability to control sensitive information is destructive of the morale of people who do keep secrets, as well as damaging to our security- during the last several years, the president has emphasized the special obligation federal workers have to protect the classified information with which they are entrusted-we have increased and must intensify our efforts to uncover* those who violate this trust- we are studying procedures and possibly new laws needed to deal with federal employees who decide on their own to disclose classified information-

inould like to emphasize that all of usery serious challenge in copingapidly growing terrorist threat- we are eager to develop better understanding and closer cooperation with organizations like yours and others in the private sector who canontribution to developing policies and educating our people about this dangerous development

1 particularly applaud and encourage the interest and

efforts of my good friend RaBBI tanenbaum and of this organization to implement the public education aspects of vice president Bush's

Task Force Report on Combatting Terrorism-

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