28 Jun 2010
Monday Morning News Kick Off: Pelosi Could Block Clapper Nomination, Panetta Warns of Iran Threat and Much More
Welcome to the Monday Morning News Kick Off post from got geoint? As always, we hope everyone had a restful weekend, and yes, it was hot. So now is the time to cool yourself off with some actionable news to jump start your week. Leon Panetta warns of Iran’s threat, Pelosi is creating a potential block to General Clapper being nominated and much more. So, as we always say, fire up that second cup of coffee and read on. Happy Monday!
Panetta Warns of Iran Threat
Central Intelligence Agency Director Leon Panetta said Iran has enough fissile material for two atomic bombs, and that it could develop nuclear weapons in two years if it wanted, in the Obama administration’s starkest assessment to date of Tehran’s nuclear work. The CIA chief’s comments mark a further distancing of the U.S. government from a controversial 2007 National Intelligence Estimate, compiled by Washington’s 16 spy agencies, that concluded Tehran had stopped developing atomic weapons in 2003. The office of the Director of National Intelligence, the U.S.’s top intelligence body, has been preparing a new NIE that was expected to be released as early as last December. Read the full Wall Street Journal article here.
Pelosi’s Deadlock Holds Up Intel Czar Nomination
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is blocking a House floor vote on an intelligence reform bill that, she says, doesn’t go far enough to strengthen congressional oversight of sensitive spy operations. But congressional sources say that unless Pelosi allows the legislation to move forward, key senators are likely to stall confirmation hearings for James Clapper, the Obama administration’s nominee to be director of national intelligence, potentially leaving that key job vacant indefinitely. When President Obama earlier this month announced that he wanted Clapper, currently intelligence supremo at the Pentagon, to succeed the ousted Dennis Blair as his new intelligence czar, administration officials indicated they hoped the Senate could vote to confirm him before Congress adjourns for the July 4 holiday. Read the full Newsweek blog post here.
US Lawmakers Grill Apple on Location Tracking Changes
Mobile Apps Are Watching You
The Police famously (and creepily) sang “every step you take, I’ll be watching you”. Now, many people are worried about just how much their mobile devices and applications are watching where they go and what they do. Location-based services and applications have officially moved beyond the cool new feature phase and have become pretty much a fact of life of the modern online world. Every new phone has the ability to pinpoint exactly where you are and many mobile applications now include geolocation as one of their features. Read the full InformationWeek post here.
NASA Radar Images Show How Mexico Quake Deformed Earth
NASA has released the first-ever airborne radar images of the deformation in Earth’s surface caused by a major earthquake — the magnitude 7.2 temblor that rocked Mexico’s state of Baja California and parts of the American Southwest on April 4. The data reveal that in the area studied, the quake moved the Calexico, Calif., region in a downward and southerly direction up to 80 centimeters (31 inches). Read the full NASA press release here.
ESRI Helping Track Wildlife, Spread of Oil
In a Louisiana marsh, far from any roads or news cameras, mapping specialist Tom Patterson looked for pelicans made sick by oil. When he found one, he entered its location into a handheld GPS device. And within seconds, the updated map was shared with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies responding to the disaster resulting from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Patterson, a Redlands resident and former Joshua Tree fire chief, was sent by Redlands-based Environmental Systems Research Institute to teach responders to collect and input data using mapping software developed by ESRI. Because the software allows maps to be live and to be instantly shared, it has become a valuable tool in responding to the Gulf oil spill. Read the full San Bernadino Sun article here.
Tags: Central Intelligence Agency, CIA, Clapper, Clapper Nomination, ESRI, GEOING, got geoint?, James Clapper, Leon Panetta, Monday Morning News Kick Off, Nancy Pelosi and the Intelligence Community, United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation, USGIF