According to Politico, the proposal was a response to a message from representatives of regional U.S. military commands who appealed last year to the leadership of U.S. intelligence agencies asking for more evidence that they could disclose as they fight the “destructive behavior” of Russia and China.
Washington can only win the support of American allies, they said, by “openly fighting for the truth against those who challenge America in the 21st century.” But, they note, efforts to fight in the battle of ideas are constrained by overly strict methods of secrecy, Politico writes.
“Unfortunately, we still lack the capacity to shed light on the truth, to confront distortions, to point out falsehoods, and to influence events in time to make a difference,” the publication cites excerpts from the generals’ message.
“The Russians and Chinese in particular have turned information into weapons. This is a significant concern, which has been pointed out by Army commanders and intelligence professionals. They need timely and relevant information to expose malicious activity and confront what they see,” former U.S. Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence and Security Kari Bingen, who also received the message, told Politico.
Politico writes that Admiral Phil Davidson, head of the U.S. Army Indo-Pacific Command, suggested the message be prepared. He was supported by the commanders of U.S. forces in Asia, Europe, Africa and Latin America, as well as the heads of U.S. Space Command and Special Operations. However, his message was not signed by the leaders of the cyber command and the U.S. Central Command. The message has now been declassified, but is labeled “for official use only.