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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Overview of the Intelligence Process
Most books about intelligence end up being boring discussions about the intelligence cycle or intelligence sources and never get to the heart of the process. Clark begins with a brief discussion about the intelligence process, but quickly focuses on why it is important to accurately define the problem that you are trying to assess. This step is often missed, even by...
Published on May 22, 2007 by Ronald A. Woodward

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9 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good content, bad shell
The content of this book, a required reading in my program, is informative. It's a shame however, I had to pay over 40 (!) dollars for this product only to have pages separating from the binding after just a few weeks of use. With such high prices, and for a new book, yet, won't you allocate a portion of the fees you collect towards improving the quality of your...
Published on November 16, 2008 by Mason


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Overview of the Intelligence Process, May 22, 2007
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This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
Most books about intelligence end up being boring discussions about the intelligence cycle or intelligence sources and never get to the heart of the process. Clark begins with a brief discussion about the intelligence process, but quickly focuses on why it is important to accurately define the problem that you are trying to assess. This step is often missed, even by seasoned intelligence analysts, who frequently leave many of their assumptions unclarified. Clark uses many references to actual historical case studies to make valid points about common failure tendencies. The real value of this book is in the area of predictions. Clark states rather emphatically that "(D)escribing a past event is not intelligence analysis; it is history. The highest form of intelligence analysis requires structured thinking that results in a prediction of what is likely to happen. True intelligence analysis is always predictive". He goes on to dedicate a sizeable share of remainder of the book to predictive techniques. Many who claim to be intelligence officers do not employ the predictive techniques describes in this book. Intelligence folks have a propensity to gravitate to current intelligence and retell what has already been told, while neglecting to take on the challenging task of predicting what is next. This is one of the best overview books on intelligence analysis. Highly recommended reading.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, but not perfect, September 18, 2008
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This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
This is an excellent work on intelligence analysis, but is not for the layman. Mr. Clark is up front about his target audience, so I went into it knowing that I might struggle a bit. He routinely uses terms and refers to concepts that are somewhat obscure, a glossary would create a huge improvement. But the effort invested in reading this was well rewarded.

The title; "Intelligence Analysis: A Target-centric Approach" is misleading. The book provides a comprehensive overview of the entire intelligence process from collecting information to the civil and military leaders using the product of analysis in their decision process, not just "Intelligence Analysis". "Target-centric" analysis sounds very impressive, but it is more a reflection of LTC (ret) Clark's Air Force roots, and a rebuke to intelligence in support of political agendae than a new concept for analysis. The content of the book doesn't suffer at all, but some potential readers might be put off by this.

The use of diverse and fairly well cited examples (I assume the uncited ones are first-hand information for the author?) made this an excellent read, but some of the examples could benefit from clarification as to whether or not they're notional. The entire intelligence process is descibed, along with some of the bureaucratic idiosyncrosies that created some of the confusing arrangements of agencies and nomenclature. The specifics of analytical methods were excellent. I thought the discussion of link analysis for describing social networks was excellent, but he neglected to point out that sociologists use the same tools and methods in their research, as do investigative reporters. Again, it could have benefited from some clarification (like the difference between covert and clandestine, and the inconsistent use of operational level and tactical level) but this was, at worst, a trivial distractor from his main point.

His main point was the need for collaboration between all the concerned parties; intelligence collectors, analysts, and the decision-makers that use it. He discussed an illustrated the problem at length and certainly makes his case. I was intrigued though. He seems to be personally struggling with some of the underlying issues like chaotic, nonlinear, and non-hierarchical issues and organizations facing our nation. Despite this, he is doing the right thing and acting as a proponent for a radical revision of our structure rather than trying to pound in post 9/11 screws with a Cold War rock, and he certainly has earned my personal respect for that.

This is an excellent work and should be read by any responsible citizen with desire to better understand the workings of the process behind our national policy decisions (but be prepared to do a lot of supporting reading if you're not a member of Clark's world).

E. M. Van Court
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Got any Spooks in training? Get a copy of this book!, November 21, 2008
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This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
BE WARNED - this book will NOT teach you how to kill a man, overthrow governments or set up a military tribunal at GITMO... if you want to learn how to analyze problems, and see a peek into how the U.S. government analyzes national security information, this book is for you.

I've carried around a copy of this book for the last 5 months since my Intel Analysis class ended. I refer to it constantly, whether it be the list of INTs (intelligence disciplines) or targeting methodologies... This may have been the best $40 I have spent on a book in a while.

This copy has also been asked about by colleagues in the intelligence field, who hesitantly admit there is no "introductory" textbook to intelligence analysis - most of it is on-the-job training. I have seen it used in undergraduate and graduate studies, on the desk of Subject Matter Experts at the National Air & Space Intelligence Center, and in other "nondescript" locations. The prevalence of this text in the IC (intelligence community) should be enough to convince a bystandard that this text is worth of their time.

The only downside was the package - a paperback book for the cost seems excessive, but once you get into it (chapter three at least), you'll see how useful the information is... and my griping about the cost stopped.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive, September 7, 2009
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This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
Really enjoyed this book. Had to read a section or two twice, but it was worth it to fully comprehend the concepts Mr. Clark was explaining. Was very educational and practical. Brings reader back to the purpose of intelligence analysis and furnishes a blueprint for a systematic approach to this art.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Handbook for Today's Analyst, December 13, 2007
This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
Robert M. Clark's "Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach" is an up-to-date, practical manual on the conduct of analysis in the context of the current global war on terrorism. This manual is well suited for classroom use for intelligence professionals, whether in the military, in civilian government agencies, or private industry.

Clark divides his topic into three principal sections. In the first, he provides a detailed break-down of the target-centric approach as the collaborative, interactive, information network-enabled analysis that has replaced the hierarchial stovepipe architecture of the Cold War.

In the second section, on modeling, Clark explains in clear and understandable language the process by which analysts synthesize available information into a conceptualization of the intelligence problem. This key step produces the basis to which analysts will apply predictive analysis.

The heart of the book is Clark's exploration of the techniques and potential pitfalls of predictive analysis. Clark discusses a variety of methods to approach analysis, along with their practical limits and familar challenges such as bias and customer interaction. His liberal use of examples from recent intelligence failures help make clear just what a challenging combination of art, science, and team effort good intelligence analysis should be.

This book is not without some faults. His definitions of Strategic, Operational, and Tactical intelligence are imprecise and not those commonly in use in, for example, the Department of Defense. Strategic intelligence is better defined by the level of the customer served and not by whether it is long range or short range. Similarly, his breakdown of the standard intelligence disciplines achieves simplicity at the expense of considerable accuracy. As an example, his explanation of TECHINT confuses the acquisition of foreign materials with their actual exploitation for intelligence value. It should be noted in Clark's defense that the U.S. Intelligence Community lacks standardization, which fault contributes to the challenges of collaboration.

This book is very highly recommended to intelligence professionals interested in a systematic and unclassified exploration of the techniques of good analysis.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good Resource, May 10, 2013
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Very good resource for crime and intelligence analysts working on smaller projects. The book should also be read by criminal investigators. It provides an alternative to the traditional intelligence cycle and argues for a Target Centric approach to intelligence.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, August 18, 2014
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This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
Excellent condition. Really good book for intelligence analysts and wannabe analysts in today's world..
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Grad Student, December 29, 2008
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M. Harris (Fresno, Ca USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
I am a grad student in International Relations; Confilct Resolution in International and TransNational Security. I purchased this book to better understand the concepts and innerworkings of the intelligence community, and the book was not only extreamly insightful, but also very easy to read and understand.
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9 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good content, bad shell, November 16, 2008
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This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
The content of this book, a required reading in my program, is informative. It's a shame however, I had to pay over 40 (!) dollars for this product only to have pages separating from the binding after just a few weeks of use. With such high prices, and for a new book, yet, won't you allocate a portion of the fees you collect towards improving the quality of your merchandise?
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0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The storage of experience makes it possible to predict future, July 31, 2008
This review is from: Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition (Paperback)
Actually, theory was made from experience of real world. But, when we try to adjust it to real world, it isn't always available. Because during the book was wriitten, the real world was being changed. This book was wriiten by the authors who have experience of Intelligence community and they regreted not to protect attack of terrorists. (i.e. 9/11) I recommend this book them who have seek to the way to keep the security of nation.
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Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition
Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition by Robert M. Clark (Paperback - September 11, 2006)
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