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Autore: Redazione

Ferdinando Angeletti | Institute of High Studies on Terrorism and Insurgency (Istituto di Alti Studi per il Terrorismo e l’Eversione – IASTE) | Intelligence & Interview N.25 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

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Working – an age ago – to my monograph on the philosophy of war, I had the chance to read Ferdinando Angeletti’s paper. It was very perspicuous and well-written. Then, I decided to contact him to have feedback on a chapter of the book, “pure theory of war”, where I analyzed the normative component of the principles of war. Angeletti was then interested in the theory of games and its application to war (I hope to recall it correctly, but everybody knows my infallibility!). Naturally, it started a conversation, and the chapter improved by it (inspite of my alleged infallibility). By then, Angeletti and I had the opportunity to co-author a piece on terrorism during Brexit published by the Brexit institute (Dublin City University). Then, I discovered how a detailed, careful, and rigorous researcher Angeletti is, even more. Meanwhile, I discover, first, that Angeletti was part of the Italian Society of Military History (SISM, the readers still remember – yes!, I know it! – the recent Virgilio Ilari’s interview); second, that he founded an institute on terrorism and eversion studies. Then, I was glad to be part of it as a member. There are few people that I esteem so much as Ferdinando for his work and research. I hope, then, that the reader will discover more about IASTE, Institute of High Studies on Terrorism and Insurgency (Istituto di Alti Studi per il Terrorismo e l’Eversione – IASTE). Without further ados, it is then with my distinct pleasure to publish the interview on Scuola Filosofica – for those who don’t know it yet; it is one of the leading cultural blogs in Italy. In the name of Scuola Filosofica Team, our readers, and myself, Giangiuseppe Pili, Ferdinando: thank you!

James Cox | Personal Experience, Canadian Intelligence & Intelligence Theory | Intelligence & Interview N.24 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

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Words sometimes are not enough. They are never as such when gratitude is involved. As William Shakespeare said, the words to express love are always a few and always the same. I’m neither Shakespeare nor Dante (to stay closer to my mother-language), but at least you can really have a gist of my own appreciation for this interview.

Dr James Cox is a Brigadier-General (ret.) and served as the Deputy Chief of Staff Intelligence at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE). He is an Adjunct Faculty – Wilfrid Laurier University, and he has too many important positions but, as I’m a member of the International Association of Intelligence Education (IAFIE), at least I must report that he is part of the IAFIE’s Board of Directors as Director, beyond being Chair of the Board of Directors, IAFIE-CANADA. I must confess that Dr Cox is one of the persons with who I can talk forever. Meanwhile, I was preparing my interview, I wrote down at least twenty or so questions, realizing that I couldn’t ask anybody to use so much time, especially in this case. Then, to meet the Intelligence & Interview 10 questions standard, I finally compromised arriving at 12 questions where I tried to explore three topics: Dr Cox’s career and experience in the field, the Canadian intelligence, and intelligence theory.

Samantha Newbery | Intelligence, Interrogation and Torture | Intelligence & Interview N.23 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

Intelligence & Interview #23 approaches one of the most controversial ethical topics of intelligence and intelligence studies. Yes, I mean the blurred limit between interrogation and torture. In particular, torture is conceived as part of interrogation. Interrogation does not imply torture, theoretically and practically; however, torture is sometimes used as a tool for interrogators within intelligence contexts. This is true for totalitarian regimes, which do not have to justify their systematic use (though restrictions can be in place). This is sometimes the case for democracies. Even after Cesare Beccaria’s masterpiece, we are still debating if torture can be a tool for interrogators. Few scholars are now more familiar with this crucial topic than Dr Samantha Newbery, Reader at Salford University (Manchester).

John M. Nomikos | Greek Intelligence and RIEAS | Intelligence & Interview N.22 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

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Intelligence & Interview is aimed to bring different international perspectives and experiences into the common debate of intelligence studies. It is not aimed to revolutionize a field, but it is based on the idea that we should start to recognize more the role of different perspectives from a national, cultural, and linguistic standpoint. Recently, an interview triggered a long discussion with a friend of mine on the utility of this conception.

Magda Long | Covert Actions Today | Intelligence & Interview N.21 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

The intelligence world has its grievances everywhere in the world. This is particularly true in the Western democracies precisely because… they are democracies. In theory, democracies are the land of human rights, transparency, and ultimately openness. After all, any other form of government is not so engaged with those values. However, the reality is always more complex, and history teaches us that even the most established and oldest democracies in the world, comparatively speaking, have their covert activities. But is this only history? Are covert actions simply dead, a “relic of the Cold War”? This is exactly the right introductory question for this insightful interview. After twenty interviews now, in which we covered less controversial topics (but are there any in the intelligence studies?), I thought to tackle one of the most fascinating, complicated, and complex topics of intelligence studies. It wasn’t possible to find a better person than Magda Long, Ph.D. candidate at King’s College – London, whose passion for intelligence and research is so completely transparent. Her in-depth knowledge and passion will be apparent to all our readers once they go through the interview. And I’m always glad to bring different opinions on my research topics and ideas. Indeed, I argued elsewhere that covert actions are not part of intelligence in theory; but they are for historical reasons. And it is cool to put it after the interview on intelligence ethics! Ok, I hope I persuaded you that if you are interested in covert actions, especially in the current geopolitical competition, this is definitely the interview you were searching for. Then, it is with my distinct pleasure to publish the interview on Scuola Filosofica – for those who don’t know it yet; it is one of the leading cultural blogs in Italy. In the name of Scuola Filosofica Team, our readers, and myself, Giangiuseppe Pili, Magda: thank you!

Kira Vrist Rønn | Epistemology & Intelligence Ethics | Intelligence & Interview N.20 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

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I’m tremendously excited to publish this wonderful interview with Kira Vrist Rønn, senior lecturer at University College Copenhagen. Professor Vrist Rønn published extensively about the philosophy of intelligence. Specifically, she worked on the epistemology of intelligence and intelligence ethics. These two topics are indeed the core of “Intelligence & Interview N.20”. Though practically oriented, the intelligence studies include an important and – I would add – fundamental theoretical component. Intelligence theory is indeed crucial to understand the practical aspects of the intelligence profession. Is objectivity possible in intelligence analysis? What is intelligence? Is intelligence ethics possible, or is it an unbearable oxymoron? Is intelligence an art or a science? To reply to all these questions, we need to bring philosophical concepts to clarify what intelligence is. Professor Vrist Rønn was a pioneer in this research, and she authored and edited several works (see below). Given my long-lasting research interest in both epistemology and ethics of intelligence, I can only be thrilled by publishing this thought-provoking interview. Recently, Intelligence & Interview N.19 already touched on the epistemology of intelligence. But that was a starter, also considering the different main topics of that issue. This interview goes deeper on the epistemology and ethics of intelligence. Then, it is with my distinct pleasure to publish the interview on Scuola Filosofica – for those who don’t know it yet, it is one of the leading cultural blogs in Italy. In the name of Scuola Filosofica Team, our readers, and myself, Giangiuseppe Pili, Kira: thank you!

Franck Bulinge | French Intelligence & CounterTerrorism Today | Intelligence & Interview N.19 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

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As we expand the number of Intelligence & Interview series quickly, we are working hard to bring as many different national experiences as possible. As I had personally stated several ways, Int & Int aims to boost a common and enlarged dialogue beyond the usual boundaries, bringing as many perspectives as possible. Considering how close France is to Italy geographically, culturally, and historically (for instance, my mother’s little town still remember the French revolution vividly – not a joke at all), it was my duty to bring the crucial French intelligence perspective. It was then natural to me to approach professor Franck Bulinge, an ex-practitioner, expert in intelligence analysis and disciplines, with a strong, solid grasp on France’s intelligence history and present. In addition, I was delighted to discover his publication in Italian (see below), edited by a common colleague, Giuseppe Gagliano & Cestudec – one of my first supporters in my research and who wrote two precious introductions to two books of mine. Finally, Professor Bulinge is also deeply involved in developing an epistemology of intelligence, recalling the lesson of Isaac Ben-Israel’s research (The Philosophy and Methodology of Intelligence) that deeply shaped the philosophical understanding of intelligence. Then, it is with my distinct pleasure to publish the interview on Scuola Filosofica – for those who don’t know it yet, is one of the leading cultural blogs in Italy. In the name of Scuola Filosofica Team, our readers, and myself, Giangiuseppe Pili, Franck: thank you!


1. Professor Franck Bulinge, let’s start from the basics. How would you like to present yourself to the International readers and Philosophical School (Scuola Filosofica)?

I am a researcher at the Mediterranean Institute of Information and Communication, specialized in information literacy. At the University of Toulon, I teach informational self-defense as well as intelligence analysis, critical thinking, management of crisis information, and last but not least, script writing for web series. I am a glider pilot, I love trekking and I live far from cities in the heart of Provence.

Mario Caligiuri & Luigi Rucco | Italian Society of Intelligence – History, Mission and Methods | Intelligence & Interview N.18 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

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The first time I met Professor Mario Caligiuri was during my PhD. I was in the middle of it, and I had recently published my monograph on the philosophy of war. Everything started with that. I sent the book to Professor Caligiuri, and then a long conversation on intelligence and war started. Then, I met him several times, even in the outstanding Master of Intelligence – University of Calabria, where I was honored to present my research two times as an invited lecturer. In 2018, I started to be part of Intelligence Lab. To make a long story short, we co-authored a book, Intelligence Studies, where we try to compare the Italian intelligence experience and the Anglo-Saxon intelligence from a theoretical and practical perspective. We are currently working together to bring Italian intelligence to the attention of international journals of Intelligence Studies. Meanwhile, Professor Caligiuri and Dr Luigi Rucco, who also co-authored a book Quantum Intelligence, worked relentlessly to elaborate a sound strategy to boost Italy’s intelligence culture, which is Professor Caligiuri’s long-lasting mission even before he was appointed director of the Master of Intelligence. Then, Professor Caligiuri, along with Professor Domenico Talia and Professor Alberto Ventura, founded the Italian Intelligence Society (or, as I call it, Italian Society of Intelligence). Though still very young, this an already vibrant national reality scientifically and culturally. Given the current Italian landscape, this is more than simple good news. This is a light of hope. Then, they invited me to be part of the Editorial Board. I was honored to accept and then I started to work on the project “Intelligence & Interview”, which should be republished by the Society when it reached a sufficient number of publications. The Italian version will be in English for international readers, and the English interviews will be republished in Italian. This is the project. In this way, I&I will be able to bring international scholars within Italian intelligence studies and vice versa. As recently stated in a podcast, we must work united to bring the national experiences to the scientific community. For this reason, I waited to consolidate the already substantial audience of I&I to interview Professor Caligiuri and Dr Rucco. Then, it is with my distinct pleasure to publish the interview on Scuola Filosofica – for those who don’t know it yet, is one of the leading cultural blogs in Italy. In the name of Scuola Filosofica Team, our readers, and myself, Giangiuseppe Pili, Mario and Luigi: thank you!

Philani Dhlamini| Intelligence & Interview #10| Intelligence in Africa – Versione Italiana

Questa è la traduzione dell’intervista “Intelligence & Interview #10“, quando ancora non aveva il titolo ufficiale della serie! Sembrano passati pochi mesi, ma la serie ha avuto un clamoroso successo e ha proseguito la sua storia con ricercatori e professionisti nazionali e internazionali. Philani Dhlamini è un esperto di intelligence, specialmente nel ramo OSINT e Social Media. Tuttavia, egli è anche un ricercatore e una delle sue missioni è quella di portare gli studi sull’intelligence in Africa all’attenzione della comunità internazionale degli studi sull’intelligence. In tal senso, egli mi ha invitato a presentare la mia opinione sulla necessità di allargare il dibattito a livello internazionale sia sull’Africa sia oltre. In questa circostanza (qui il podcast) ho avuto modo di specificare i motivi per cui gli intelligence studies sono ancora così influenzati dal pensiero anglo-americano, circostanza comprensibile ma da superare. Ho parlato lentamente e sembra quasi balbettante. Ma la causa era la difficoltà del tema, che andava ponderato con molta attenzione. Proseguire verso una maggiore integrazione significa lavorare in un contesto internazionale in cui le singole comunità di studi sull’intelligence nazionali portano il loro caso all’attenzione della comunità scientifica. Mi pare di poter dire che questo obiettivo sia ancora molto lontano, come il caso europeo – e italiano – dimostrano. Infatti, le pubblicazioni disponibili in lingua inglese sulle singole esperienze nazionali europee  – e il nostro caso non è affatto un’eccezione in tal senso – sono assai poche e comunque principalmente francesi o tedesche (dove gli UK fanno già parte integrante e costitutiva degli intelligence studies come si può intendere dal recente libro scritto insieme al professor Mario Caligiuri – Intelligence Studies in cui tracciamo proprio il paragone tra il caso italiano e quello internazionale). Per tale ragione, una delle prime dieci interviste è stata proprio con il dott. Dhlamini, per iniziare a congiungere i diversi fili dispersi della storia e cultura dell’intelligence. Senza ulteriori indugi, pur consigliando la versione originale scritta in un inglese denso e ricco, vi lasciamo alla scoperta dell’intelligence nella storia e cultura africana.

William Spracher | Intelligence Education and the American Intelligence Journal | Intelligence & Interview N.17 | Dr Giangiuseppe Pili

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“Intelligence & Interview” #17 is honored to present you a wonderful interview with an exceptional guest, Dr. William Spracher, Professor of Strategic Intelligence and Director of the Writing Center at the National Intelligence University! The first time I saw Professor Spracher, he didn’t know it. It was my first time at the International Studies Association convention in Baltimore, 2017. It looks like an age ago, and it was my first engagement with the Intelligence Studies Section (ISS). I was intimidated, and I used to listen carefully, silently. Since then, I had the pleasure of participating in ISA regularly, and Professor Spracher was always there. However, the first time we spoke was due to a wonderful opportunity Professor Spracher was advertising: a student volume to be edited by the American Intelligence Journal. I kindly asked him if it was a sound idea to advertise it a bit. And I did it. Moreover, I had the pleasure to meet Professor Spracher again at the International Association for Intelligence Education (IAFIE) conference (2019) in New York. It was one of the best conferences I ever attended. I confess that I really enjoyed it. In addition, it was my first time in NY, and it was an overwhelming experience. Professor Spracher was present to my panel, where I presented one of my well-known (maybe not) “crazy” research. It was a comparison between chess and intelligence. Then, I submitted it to the American Intelligence Journal, whose editor in chief is Professor Spracher himself. It is my fifth article in an international journal, “Is a Chess Player and Intelligence Analyst?” (American Intelligence Journal, 36: (2), 74-85). Professor Spracher is a very dedicated and inspiring person whose experience in the field of intelligence education, intelligence tradecraft, and so much more is well-known. Then, it is with my distinct pleasure to publish the interview on Scuola Filosofica – for those who don’t know it yet, is one of the leading cultural blogs in Italy. In the name of Scuola Filosofica Team, our readers, and myself, Giangiuseppe Pili, William: thank you!