IWP professor Dr. Norman A. Bailey wrote an article for the Association of Former Intelligence Officers’ (AFIO) journal, The Intelligencer (Volume 20, Number 3, Summer-Fall 2021). His article, “The Evolving Nature of International Relations and What It Means for Intelligence,” advocates for the intelligence community to improve the training of its professionals and how they conduct their activities with regard to the current international situation.
Dr. Bailey’s concern is that today’s international society is returning to a political structure that is similar to what existed prior to the Westphalia Treaty in 1648. Prior to the treaty, the prominent political entities included the great empires of the world, a hodge-podge of political entities, and non-state actors (NSAs) like the Catholic Church. Similarly, the great powers, individual countries, and non-state actors are the important political figures in the present day.
There are six ways to improve the intelligence community’s effectiveness, considering this trend, noted Dr. Bailey. First, there should be an emphasis on the nature and practices of non-state actors. Second, the behavior of non-state actors should be analyzed on a psychological, sociological, economic, and anthropological level. Third, the intelligence community should reconsider how it deals with countries based on their geography, population size, military strength, and their ability to exert its influence on the international community. Fourth, intelligence must coordinate effectively with the other implementers of foreign policy under new and rapidly changing conditions. Fifth, counterintelligence agencies must understand the threat that NSAs pose and be able to confront them. Lastly, intelligence training should be swiftly and thoroughly modernized so that intelligence continues to serve as an effective contributor to the implementation of foreign policy.
Dr. Bailey serves as a Professor of Economics and National Security at The Institute of World Politics. He previously served as the Senior Director of International Economic Affairs on the White House National Security Council.