Author Biography

Edward M Roche, Ph.D., J.D. is a member of the California Bar. Michael J Blaine holds an MBA in finance from New York University and a Ph.D. in international business from Ohio State University. John McCreary is publisher of the daily Night Watch intelligence briefing and a retiree from the Defense Intelligence Agency.



Subject Area Keywords

Counterterrorism, Intelligence analysis, Intelligence collection, Methodology, National security, Networks and network analysis


The intelligence community is facing a new type of organization, one enabled by the world’s information and communications infrastructure. These asyngnotic networks operate without leadership and are self-organizing in nature. They pose a threat to national security because they are difficult to detect in time for intelligence to provide adequate warning. Social network analysis and link analysis are important tools but can be supplemented by application of neuroscience principles to understand the forces that drive asyngnotic self-organization and triggering of terrorist events. Applying Living Systems Theory (LST) to a terrorist attack provides a useful framework to identify hidden asyngnotic networks. There is some antecedent work in propaganda analysis that may help uncover hidden asyngnotic networks, but computerized SIGINT methods face a number of challenges.