Thursday, August 05, 2004

No Wonder There's No Work!

Instead of cranking out screenplays for movies and TV shows, Hollywood Screenwriters have been busy working for the CIA! Hmmm, wonder if they need any Sets built?

CIA Checking if Life Imitates Art

(1 hour, 34 minutes ago)

By Tabassum Zakaria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - When the plot thickens, the CIA calls in the professionals -- Hollywood screenwriters.

Addressing what the Sept. 11 commission said was one of the main failures of government -- imagination -- a senior CIA official said Wednesday the spy agency was willing to "push beyond the traditional boundaries of intelligence."

"We had our terrorism and counternarcotics analysts meet with Hollywood directors, screenwriters and producers. People who are known for developing the summer blockbusters or the hit TV show that often have a terrorism theme," said Jami Miscik, CIA's deputy director for intelligence.

"It was an attempt to see beyond the intelligence report, and into a world of plot development," she told a House Intelligence Committee hearing on the Sept. 11 commission's recommendations about analysis and the need for imagination and creativity.

The CIA also ran a round-table discussion with 10 science-fiction authors so intelligence analysts could see how the writers spun possible scenarios.

"An invaluable opportunity for analysts to push the envelope on where a nascent development might lead," Miscik called it.

"To truly nurture creativity, you have to cherish your contrarians and give them opportunities to run free," she said.

"Leaders in the analytic community must avoid trying to make everyone meet a preconceived notion of the intelligence community's equivalent of the 'man in the gray flannel suit'," Miscik said.

To address a key election-year issue, House and Senate committees are holding hearings during their summer recess on the recommendations of the Sept. 11 commission for an overhaul of the intelligence bureaucracy.

The hearings come amid heightened alert in the United States for a possible al Qaeda attack in the run-up to the November presidential election.

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