Intelligence in Defense of Democracy, PRP 221

Date

2022

Authors

Slick, Stephen B.

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LBJ School of Public Affairs

Abstract

The threat posed to America’s democratic processes by Russia and other foreign adversaries is serious and likely to persist, if not grow, in the future. Russian operations aimed at interfering with or influencing the 2016 U.S. presidential election paired longstanding Soviet and Russian tradecraft with powerful new digital tools. Our governments, both federal and state, are better prepared to address such threats today. U.S. intelligence represents the first line of defense against foreign malign influence by focusing on early detection, appropriate sharing of information, reliable attribution of sponsorship, expert analysis, collaboration with the private sector, and timely communication with stakeholders including the voting public. This report describes the historical context and remaining challenges and recommends steps to improve the IC’s performance on this important mission.

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