Diversity in the Age of Terror: How Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the U.S. Intelligence Community Enhances National Security

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Florida A&M University Law Review

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Fla. A & M U. L. Rev.


Racial and ethnic diversity in the intelligence community enhances U.S. national security. But a history of homogeneity in the intelligence community has undermined national security. The failure to maximize the benefits of a pluralistic population led to a dearth of diverse intelligence personnel that helped account for the failure to fully understand the al-Qaeda threat. The post-9/11 Intelligence Reform Act of 2004, which for the first time statutorily mandated efforts to diversify the intelligence community, was a significant step in remedying the lack of diversity in the intelligence community. Nevertheless, the intelligence committee needs to undertake further steps including continuing congressional oversight and race-related bona fide occupational qualifications to overcome a history of exclusion in the intelligence community. Despite incremental progress, the efforts to diversify the intelligence community must continue to attain both security and equality.

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