Former CIA analyst Lisa Ruth said she agrees with a point made by former National Security Agency director General Keith Alexander
that the surveillance done by the NSA is merely a piece of the puzzle.
"Taking it out of the ethical part of it, what you may or may not want there, NSA surveillance does provide us a piece of a puzzle," Ruth told J.D. Hayworth on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV. "And really what analysts do, more so than the collectors, is take each of these little pieces and try to put it together and build something."
"The surveillance program does provide some of those pieces," she said Monday.
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FBI Director James Comey told The New York Times
that he had underestimated the terrorist threat, particularly from al-Qaida.
Ruth explained that one of the problems in the intelligence community is that CIA and FBI agents "don't share intelligence" and "that is a real deficit" because it also was a problem leading up to the 9/11 attacks.
In the "CIA — we're promoted based on recruiting, when we go out, we recruit someone. FBI is promoted based on arrests," Ruth said. "If I collect information that talks about a terrorist and I provide that to the FBI, the FBI wants to arrest the guy. From an intelligence standpoint, we want to continue to be able to collect intelligence."
"It does create some tension between the two groups. There's not sufficient intelligence sharing from anyone," she added.
As for the situation in Nigeria with more than 200 kidnapped teenage girls, Ruth says she "wouldn't be surprised" if the Nigerian government negotiates with Boko Haram, the terrorist group responsible for the kidnapping, but she is doubtful it will work.
"Historically, Boko Haram has a very simple method of dealing with people who try to negotiate with the government, and that is they behead them," she said. "So, when you're talking about sitting down to negotiate, whether it's the Nigerian side or the terrorist side, I'm not sure if that will work."
Ruth said Nigeria is "at a very big disadvantage" because while Boko Haram has "great intelligence" on the Nigerian government, "Nigeria does not have intel on Boko Haram."
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