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U.S. company Cycorp is tied into the U.S. intelligence community like few other commercial entities. With a long-standing relationship with the ultra-connected Admiral Bobby Ray Inman, Cycorp has an intel pedigree that few others can match.

And Admiral Inman is linked to all of the key names popping up in the current anthrax scandal via his involvement with SAIC.

From the Dept. of Say What?

Cyc-ing out the terrorists

Posted 3/30/03

Only sheer brilliance or a crystal ball could foretell the next terrorist attack, right? Nope, says the inventor of a computer program that predicted anthrax might be sent through the mail six months before it happened. Cyc (as in encyclopedia), a project that is now part of the Pentagon's research on sniffing out terrorist plots, comes up with scenarios that could help focus screening efforts. It works by applying common sense to an extensive knowledge of terrorism. "It's not like beating Kasparov at chess," says creator Doug Lenat, head of the Austin-based firm Cycorp. He compares it to "a person with average intelligence but a vast amount of time and patience."

Cyc's roots go back to 1983, when Lenat concluded that efforts to create computer intelligence had hit a wall. "Robots lacked the common sense of humans," he says. So he began feeding Cyc concepts like the difference between turkey the meat or bird and Turkey, the country. The database now holds almost 2 million such simple truths.

Under a $9.8 million grant from the Defense Department's Information Awareness Office, Cyc has acquired a trove of knowledge about past terrorist activities, tactics, and weapons. But it is still a work in progress. Once, developing a scenario for a terrorist attack on Hoover Dam, it hypothesized a school of 1,000 al Qaeda- trained dolphins bearing explosives. Another time, Cyc, which can learn by asking questions, inquired: "Am I human?" It's reassuring to know it still needs our help. -Dana Hawkins

This story appears in the April 7, 2003 print edition of U.S. News & World Report.

Admiral Inman is linked to SAIC (among other things, SAIC is neck-deep in connections to digital voting machines). This article from 2003 is pretty informative;

""Currently on SAIC's board is ex-CIA director Bobby Ray Inman, director of the National Security Agency, deputy director of the CIA, and vice director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. According to the OC (*Orange County) Weekly, "Inman worked at the highest levels of American intelligence during an era (President Ronald Reagan) when it displayed a stunning lack of it. Inman's achievements include: failing to predict the peaceful collapse of the Soviet Union; prolonging violent, useless civil wars in Central America; and giving arms to terrorists in exchange for hostages (Iran Contra)."

"During the Bush administration, Inman, Perry and Deutch - while directors of Science Applications (SAIC), were also members of the National Foreign Intelligence Board (NFIB), an advisory group reporting to the President and the director of Central Intelligence, which deals with production, review and coordination of foreign intelligence," reports the Crypt. Both Inman and Deutch were former Directors of the CIA. William J. Perry was also a former Secretary of Defense during the Clinton Administration.

SAIC proudly lists DARPA in its annual report as one of its prime clients. DARPA is the controversial Department of Defense (DOD) subsidiary, which until recently employed Admiral John Poindexter of Iran-Contra fame. Poindexter was forced to resign when it was revealed that DARPA was prepared to trade "futures" in terrorist attacks. DARPA has also developed a program to spy on American citizens, which has civil libertarians in an uproar."

SAIC in turn, is linked to Steven Hatfill and Jerome Hauer. Mr. Hauer is currently a director at Emergent Solutions, parent co. of BioPort, which in turn is linked to Bruce Ivins.

So, an artificial intelligence program with an uncanny knack for putting the pieces together "predicts" the anthrax mailings, and 6 months later they happen?

And the program, under "widespread deployment" is funded heavily by DARPA, and is hard-wired into the U.S. intelligence community.

Admiral Inman is a very connected individual;

Including a maximum of 2 degrees of separation from all of the (known) players in the anthrax tango.

How detailed was Cy's (Cycorp) "prediction" about the mailings? Did it include variables like mailing the anthrax from different states to muddy the trail... stuff like that? How about a variable on creating false evidence trails to keep people guessing?

I'm not sure that Cy is any more humane than HAL ever was.

I call out to internet researchers everywhere for more info on Cycorp.

Originally posted to reprehensor on Fri Aug 08, 2008 at 06:19 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  So what are you saying? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Did they put Mr. Crazy Dude up to mailing anthrax?  Did they set him up?  If not, then they're just another bunch of highly-paid blowhard consultants who come up with stuff you or I would come up with if locked in a room with nothing to do.

    -5.38/-3.74 I've suffered for my country. Now it's your turn! --John McCain with apologies to Monty Python's "Protest Song"

    by Rich in PA on Fri Aug 08, 2008 at 06:24:22 AM PDT

    •  this is how entrapreneurs get investors.... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      G2geek, SnowCountry

      they get high profile names associated, even if they aren't central to the company or its mission. Admiral Inman is very connected- but you could pull up lots of ex-military who are as connected in the defense and security industry.  

      You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you mad. Aldous Huxley

      by murrayewv on Fri Aug 08, 2008 at 06:32:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The intelligence community (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        murrayewv, G2geek

        is very incestuous. Everybody knows everybody else, or vets people who move around. It's the ultimate old boy's network.

        Anyone who fails to see the historical parallels between Blackwater & the Nazi SS, or the DHS & the Gestapo, needs a serious reality check.

        by Randgrithr on Fri Aug 08, 2008 at 06:38:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Dayam. I had to check the tags for snark. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    First, the name "Cycorp". Is that a name straight from the comic books, or what?

    "[i]t hypothesized a school of 1,000 al Qaeda- trained dolphins bearing explosives."

    Marvel, step aside. You have been outdone.

    Meet me at the barricades.

    by pucklady on Fri Aug 08, 2008 at 06:28:55 AM PDT

  •  SAIC has worked with classified tech (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    G2geek, Quicksilver2723

    since 20 years ago when I was in. I'd tell you more, but I'd have to kill you. Not one bit surprised they're involved with voting machines today.

    Anyone who fails to see the historical parallels between Blackwater & the Nazi SS, or the DHS & the Gestapo, needs a serious reality check.

    by Randgrithr on Fri Aug 08, 2008 at 06:39:33 AM PDT

  •  Interesting how many big money (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    firms on the spooky/defense fringe have names that evoke "CIA."

    CACI, "Ever Vigilant," and "A National Resource for NAtional Security" is another one.

    It's quite possible, in fact, that they are the CIA.

    Which -- it's my impression -- is accustomed to bring in part of its operating revenue by running "private" businesses.

    Operating as "private" defense/intelligence contractors would be clever way for the Agency (and who knows, maybe other U.S. "intelligence" agencies) to get access to the taxpayers' money without the annoyance of going before Congress and explaining. So clever, it would be surprising if they weren't doing it, in my opinion. Ya think?

    •  Yes (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      G2geek, Clio2

      Many of the people working for these corporations wear multiple hats. And collect multiple paychecks. The fun thing about a black budget is that nobody's SUPPOSED to know where the money goes, after all...

      Anyone who fails to see the historical parallels between Blackwater & the Nazi SS, or the DHS & the Gestapo, needs a serious reality check.

      by Randgrithr on Fri Aug 08, 2008 at 08:38:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Response at Digg. (0+ / 0-)

    I cross-posted this article at DemocraticUnderground and linked up a Digg.

    I got one interesting response here;

    A post by "escudo"

    "...Now, if a system can be used to answer questions like "What are the ways Anthrax could be delivered to targets in a terrorist attack?", and the system contains information about how things can be delivered based on their size and other properties, it can provide a list of answers to the question which, with enough base knowledge, would include mailing the anthrax. Such a system would be very useful to a terrorist, as it would provide new ideas on how to cheaply carry out attacks. If the system knew who has anthrax, it could also tell you where to obtain it, and so on. This all leads me to the conclusion: knowledge based systems designed to defend against terrorist attacks could be used just as easily to suggest methods of terrorist attacks. A government would have quite the "false flag attack" generating system in their pocket if they had such a system. As you can see in the article, our government does have such a system. Without my knowledge of this implication, I worked on that system, thinking it was helping to defend us against such attacks..."


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