The Controversial Call for 'Humility' in Intelligence Analysis

(Photo credit: Samuel Zeller, via

(Photo credit: Samuel Zeller, via

A Defense Intelligence Agency analyst recently wrote that the American intelligence community is inundated with analysts describing themselves as “subject matter experts” whose occasional lack of “humility” can cloud their judgment on critical issues — an argument disputed by two former CIA analysts, at least as far as their old agency is concerned.

In “A Call for More Humility in Intelligence Analysis,” written by current DIA analyst John Mohr and published in the CIA’s unclassified Studies in Intelligence journal, Mohr makes the case that the nature of intelligence gathering and analysis, and the pressure to be the smartest person in the room when it comes to a particular topic, makes it difficult for the community to make an honest assessment of its own expertise day-to-day.

“In my 13 years in the IC [intelligence community], I can think of a handful of analysts I would consider true experts,” Mohr writes.

Read the full story over at Real Clear Life.

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