The Survival Podcast Forum

Survivalism & Self Sufficiency Topics => Emergency Preparations => Topic started by: swanson on November 24, 2008, 01:52:56 PM

Post by: swanson on November 24, 2008, 01:52:56 PM

For me, survival is about staying one step ahead in the game of life and living the lifestyle I want in relative comfort and safety.

To do this, I have developed intelligence resources to help guide me in the decision making process.

So here are my thoughts…

Everyone has a need to manage the information they receive in this day and age.

I find it amazing how much info and media bombards us through the internet, available reading materials, TV, and radio alone. It’s overwhelming.

But with all this open source information available, how can we turn it into something useful?

And by useful, I mean actionable intelligence. Here’s the loose definition of what I am writing about:

Actionable Intelligence-…Having the necessary information immediately available in order to deal with the situation at hand.

I submit to you that developing your own trusted intelligence resources is time well spent. Knowing that you are reading this on the survival podcast forum already tells me that you have taken a decent step in developing your own Intel resources.

In general, intelligence should help you develop a general picture of the environment you operate in as well as the dangers and pitfalls you might encounter in the short or long term when moving to reach your goals.

So how do you develop and manage your own actionable intelligence “operation”?

My suggestion is to start your “intel operation” by analyzing your present situation and circumstances and define your needs through sound research and review- It’s all about you.

In figuring out your survival and lifestyle needs and goals, developing intelligence will become a natural part of what you will do to secure yourself and your future.

Everyone is different. My needs for actionable intelligence may be similar to yours, but one shoe-size does not fit all.

So, where do you start?

Begin by examining and analyzing yourself.

Here are some questions you should ask yourself when conducting this initial, personal analysis:

•   What are my personal lifestyle, survival, and security goals?
•   What is my present situation?
•   Why is it important for me to analyze my goals and situation?
•   What is the nature and type of threats that I might encounter?
•   What specific actions can I take to manage any troubles that I foresee?
•   What will help me continue to evaluate and help me reach my goals into the future?

Once you have narrowed down your needs through personal analysis, it’s time to move out and look into developing the intelligence resources and the assets that will assist you in attaining the framework you require to meet and manage what you have learned in your analysis.

If you are similar to me, here are some limited and open source resources to start your hunt for actionable intelligence…

Useful net and media resources

Trusted family and friends (active and retired):

Local government and law enforcement
Federal government and law enforcement
Military and other DOD service members
Members of foreign services and national agencies

Do some sifting, and remember- actionable intelligence is trusted, useful, and timely information that can help shape your actions and preparations in light of your intended goals and activities.

Verify your sources (ALWAYS) and develop an intel model that works for you.
Post by: Jwatt on November 24, 2008, 03:04:18 PM
I'm not trying to discredit your sources but I wonder how helpful some of your intelligence sources would be in a severe crisis where media would not be available or reliable for up-to-date information. 
I would add to actionable intelligence:

-Neighbors and geographically close friends and relatives - skills, goods and resources that can be pooled in an emergency
-Where to find natural resources like water, food, wood, shelter
-Road conditions (again relying on the web)

How about this:  What would your your actionable intelligence be if you did not have access to the web or other forms of electronic communication?
Post by: swanson on November 24, 2008, 03:37:07 PM

I gladly agree with your assessment. It would be completely negligent to rely on any singular type of intelligence resource(especially ELINT/SIGINT)

Thanks for making the additional suggestions. I encourage folks to look well beyond the internet for valid and useful intelligence resources. It would be sophomoric at best to just rely on the Internet- especially when directly involved in an immediate crisis.

What I hoped to accomplish with my resources list was to spark addtional comments just like yours.

The more connected we are to all types and forms of intel out there, the better off we can be.

I hope everyone will ask themselves the question you pose and add it to their intelligence collection efforts...

"What would your your actionable intelligence be if you did not have access to the web or other forms of electronic communication?" - Jwatt

In light of your question, I would look to these open sources to find useful, actionable intelligence:

I would also add, that intelligence collection is an ongoing process that should occur on a daily basis. Your environment may become intensely fluid in a crisis so it's best to develop actionable intel assets PRIOR to any anticipated event.

Get ahead of the curve and stay there.

Post by: swanson on November 24, 2008, 08:01:03 PM
Here's some more tips and an outlook on the benefits of developing actionable intelligence...

To develop a useful piece of intelligence, ask yourself:

What do you need to know?

What do you already know?

Why do you need to know it?

When do you need to know it?

What will you do with the intelligence once you have it?

What will it cost you to get it?

What could it cost you not to get it?

The benefits of Intelligence are as follows:

Helps you identify and manage issues and threats before they create too much damage or risk

Improves your ability to anticipate problems and surprises

Assists you in being more responsive to changes in your environment and reduces your reaction time

Helps you Identify critical points of vulnerability in your plans and operations

Provides an early warning  for potential and developing threats

Helps you identify blind spots in your operational framework

Allows you the opportunity to synchronize the intel you've collected from many sources into a single picture

Allows you to better assess your potential tactical moves and possible outcomes

Improves the quality of your planning overall

Increases your understanding of your current and future needs

Helps you avoid redundancies in the processing of information and in the conduct of your operations

Allows for better organizational learning and increased sharing of knowledge

I hope the above will further help those who are organizing for actionable intelligence.