Intelligence drives our national security policies, and the Intelligence Community is responsible for supplying accurate and usable information to those in charge of national security. The successful intelligence process converts acquired information into clear, comprehensible intelligence and delivers it to the President, policymakers, and military commanders in a form they can utilize to make educated policy decisions. Generating reliable, accurate intelligence is an active, never-ending process commonly referred to as the intelligence cycle.
The process begins with identifying the issues in which policy makers are interested and defining the answers they need to make educated decisions regarding those issues. We then lay out a plan for acquiring that information and go about collecting it. Once we have the proper intelligence, we sort through it, analyze what it means, and prepare summary reports and recommendations, which we deliver to national security policy makers. The answers our reports supply often reveal other areas of concern, which lead to more questions. In this way, the end of one cycle effectively leads to the start of the next.
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