Intelligence centre to provide terrorism analysis

President George W. Bush announced the creation of an intelligence centre to provide analysis of foreign and domestic terrorism threats facing the United States.

The Terrorist Threat Integration Centre, to be headed by CIA director George Tenet and include the CIA, FBI, Department of Homeland Security and the Pentagon, would "deal with connecting the dots" to better protect Americans against a repeat of the September 11 attacks, said a senior Administration official.

The centre would have no operational capabilities, but would "marry up all elements so intelligence is seamless".

The CIA and FBI have been criticised for missing clues before September 11 and not adequately sharing information that if pursued might have led to unravelling the plot Washington has blamed on Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda organisation.

The House and Senate intelligence committees last year conducted a joint inquiry into September 11 failures and a new national commission will follow that with a broader look at Government shortcomings related to the attacks.

"Since September 11, our intelligence and law enforcement agencies have worked more closely than ever to track and disrupt the terrorists," Bush said in his annual State of the Union address.

- REUTERS

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