Tag Archives: Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence

Have You Ever Wondered Why DoD Relies on the Polygraph?

EDITOR’S NOTE: The article below first appeared on this site Aug. 7, 2013. Several months later, it vanished — along with nearly 5,000 others written and published since October 2006 — as detailed in a post eight months ago. Today, I rescued it from where it appears on an alternate site in order to share it below with only minor modifications. Please read and share.

Click image above to order a copy of The Clapper Memo.

Click image above to order a copy of The Clapper Memo.

You’ve probably never wondered why the Department of Defense relies so heavily on the polygraph.  Likewise, you’ve probably never thought about how polygraph technology has maintained its place as the only DoD-approved credibility assessment technology.  After reading the details in my latest nonfiction book, The Clapper Memo, you’ll know why and how.

On no fewer than three occasions since 2004, top DoD officials — including Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper while he was serving as Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence in 2007 — have declared the polygraph to be the only such technology approved for use by DoD personnel.  Though many on the front lines, including elite U.S. Special Operations personnel I interviewed for the book, ignored the DoD declarations for as long as they possibly could (see Sample Chapter for details), the Pentagon’s polygraph-only stance remains in place today and is having an often-deadly impact in the form of “Green-on-Blue” attacks against American and Coalition Forces personnel in Afghanistan.

Part of the blame for DoD’s polygraph-only stance lies in the fact that DoD officials withheld critical information from members of the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee when they were conducting an inquiry into the treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay and at other detention facilities in Iraq (i.e., Abu Ghraib, Camp Cropper and Camp Bucca) in 2008. That inquiry resulted in the publication of an unclassified 263-page report, “INQUIRY INTO THE TREATMENT OF DETAINEES IN U.S. CUSTODY,” dated November 20, 2008.

That wasn’t all they kept to themselves.  DoD officials also withheld critical information about an Air Force talking paper on Relevant/Irrelevant Screening Tests (R/IST) conducted on detainees in the Iraqi theater of operations from Aug. 1, 2004, to Oct. 15, 2006.

Notable among the 50-page document’s results, found after conducting polygraph tests on 768 detainees, was the finding that “detainee personnel are just as likely to have committed the suspected act as not.” That finding stemmed from the fact that 47 percent of the tests yielded “No Deception Indicated” results while 46 percent yielded “Deception Indicated” and seven percent “No Opinion.”

In addition to the fact the tests yielded results showing polygraph no more effective than flipping a coin, a quarter of the polygraph examiners surveyed pointed out problems posed by language barriers.

“The Arabic language itself presents an obstacle due to the different translations and dialect and at times the wrong translation of the question was noted by other interpreters,” one examiner said.

“Many interpreters were not fluent in the written Arabic language, precluding them being used by polygraph,” another reported. “They could not translate questions from English to Arabic and back again.”

“I was fortunate to have had motivated interpreters,” a third responded.  “Without them we can’t do the job (without language/culture knowledge).”

A fourth examiner reported, “there was definitely a difference in the level of interpreter experience. Some knew the language and some had a hard time.”

Click image above to order book.

Click image above to order book.

In The Clapper Memo, the 268-page product of an exhaustive four-year investigation, I highlight the fact that a non-polygraph technology was used at GITMO more than 90 times and achieved a success rate — defined as developing new, previously-unknown intelligence which was independently confirmed or confirmed existing information that otherwise could not be verified — of 92 percent despite the fact most exams were conducted using interpreters.

Now, I ask again:  Have you ever wondered how polygraph technology has maintained its position as the only Department of Defense-approved credibility assessment technology?

In their endorsement of The Clapper Memo, Gold Star parents Billy and Karen Vaughn used words such as “dirty little secrets of politics and greed” and “filthy backroom deals” to describe events and actions that have enabled the polygraph to remain DoD’s credibility assessment technology of choice.  The Vaughns lost their son, U.S. Navy SEAL Aaron Carson Vaughn, two years and one day ago in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan that is the subject of a soon-to-be-published book, BETRAYED: The Shocking True Story of Extortion 17 as told by a Navy SEAL’s Father, co-authored by Billy.

Retired U.S. Navy SEAL Capt. Larry W. Bailey, co-founder of Special Operations Speaks and former commander of the U.S. Navy SEALs Basic Underwater Demoliton/SEALs (“BUD/S”) Training Program, describes what I uncovered in The Clapper Memo as “an unconscionable cover-up.”

Others have endorsed it, too, but you should judge for yourself!  Order a copy of The Clapper Memo today!

SEE ALSO:  Horrific Tragedy Ensues After AC-130 Gunship Crew Denied Opportunity to Engage Afghan ‘Squirters’ in Tangi Valley.

For links to other articles of interest as well as photos and commentary, join me on Facebook and Twitter.  Please show your support by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  To learn how to order signed copies, click here. Thanks in advance!

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

CIA Torture Report Might Be Moot Issue If Not for Clapper

If only people like Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr. had not worked so hard to ban the use of our most-effective interrogation technology, the use of the words “CIA interrogation techniques” and “torture” in the same sentence would likely not be making headlines around the world today.

Click image above to order a copy of The Clapper Memo.

Click image above to order a copy of The Clapper Memo.

Instead, members of the national and international news media are in a tizzy about the long-awaited and much-anticipated release Tuesday of a CIA report on interrogation techniques used on suspected al-Qaeda detainees held in secret facilities in Europe and Asia in the years after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Many Washington power brokers believe the report will spur attacks against American interests.

In my second nonfiction book, The Clapper Memo, I reveal never-before-published details about interrogations conducted by Defense Intelligence Agency officials at Guantanamo Bay during the early days of the so-called “Global War On Terror.” In addition, I share details from my exclusive interviews with the men who used this highly-effective technology to interrogate members of Saddam Hussein’s inner circle (a.k.a., “The Deck of Cards”) as well as hundreds of al-Qaeda and Taliban terrorists and other detainees at locations around the world.

I also share details of how elite military and intelligence warfighters offered effuse praise for the technology — even after Clapper worked so hard to ban its use by Defense Department personnel while he was serving as Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence.

Learn more about this interrogation technology and how it, unlike waterboarding and other torture techniques, is touch-free and pain-free for those undergoing interrogations while producing superior results for interrogators.

Learn more about the reasons why, during a five-year period, members of our nation’s elite Special Forces units ignored no fewer than three Pentagon directives to stop using it.

Read some of the high-profile endorsements of the book.

Order a copy of The Clapper Memo. Thanks in advance!

If you like this article and my other efforts, please show your support by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  Thanks in advance!

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

Throwback Thursday: Intelligence Agency Spotlights Clapper

Something interesting showed up in my inbox a few minutes after noon today under the headline, Throwback Thursday: DNI Clapper as DIA director.

Click on image above (if you dare) to read full article on DNI website.

Click on image above (if you dare) to read full article on DNI website.

Released by the Defense Intelligence Agency Office of Corporate Communications, this nostalgic piece begins by reminding all of how then-Air Force Lt. Gen. James R. Clapper Jr. was sworn in as the DIA’s 11th director Nov. 18, 1991. It ends by noting that Clapper now serves as director of national intelligence. I, however, am more interested in an action Clapper took while serving as Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, before he assumed his present role as our nation’s top intelligence official.

As our nation’s fourth USDI in October 2007, Clapper issued a memo in which he declared the polygraph to be the only credibility assessment technology authorized for use by employees of the Department of Defense. In doing that, according to Army Green Berets and Navy SEALs with whom I spoke during a four-year investigation into the federal government’s use of credibility assessment technologies, he effectively removed the best interrogation technology in existence from warfighters’ toolkits.

To understand the serious implications of Clapper’s directive, read some of the endorsements of the book — including two from retired, high-ranking military officers — that appear near the bottom of this page. To learn even more, order a copy of The Clapper Memo.

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.