Members of the Senate Intelligence Committee today expressed concern that U.S. intelligence agencies may have not fully assessed the turmoil rocking North Africa and the Middle East, and they want to know what President Obama was told and when he was told it.
“This really goes at whether the collection of material was adequate,” Senate Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., told reporters. “I’ve looked at some intelligence in this area which indicates some lacking… of collection.”
“We need to uncover more of this, and we certainly will,” she added.
Feinstein said she particularly questions whether the intelligence community made proper use of open source information, such as Internet activity, to understand what was occurring in Egypt.
Intelligence ranking member Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., said he wants to know what Obama was given in terms of intelligence about the volatile situation in Egypt, and when.
“This is a major ally in a very critical part of the world, and we have a lot of resources in play,” he said. “From an oversight standpoint, we need to make sure that our resources are being used in the right way to get the best information possible.”
Chambliss said it is too early to determine if there was an intelligence breakdown.