Development of Human Intelligence

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This paper will highlight the development of human intelligence (HUMINT) and the importance of it in intelligence operations. HUMINT can provide information in areas that technical intelligence cannot and also drive the collection requirements of these disciplines when additional evidence is needed. HUMINT is critical in espionage efforts and has undergone the greatest changes from the start of the Cold War to the launch of the War on Terrorism.
Definition of HUMINT
Human Intelligence or HUMINT is intelligence that is collected through espionage commonly by sending clandestine officers to foreign countries in an attempt to recruit spies and gather valuable information. HUMINT can be collected through overt methods, openly known, or through covert measures, in secret. Intelligence officers have official covers that place them at diplomatic posts in foreign states allowing them to collect intelligence overtly. Covert collection efforts are done by those who do not have an official cover, who are typically portrayed as tourists, businessmen, or other various types of relevant covers. These covert HUMINT officers attempt to develop sources that have access to or could gain valuable information of interest to the U.S..
Brief History of HUMINT
HUINT was one of the first intelligence disciplines to be utilized. George Washington used spies during the Revolutionary War in which the operations directly contributed to the successful movement of troops around British forces to avoid conflict when able. The “mechanics” were an organized, patriot intelligence network that gathered intelligence on the British through the information of “spies”. Paul Revere’s famous “midnight ride” was part of a warning system based off of intel...

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