Monday, August 6, 2012

Monday Morning MUGshot Part III




Within my 20 years of serving in the Intelligence Community, my favorite job EVER was serving at the DIA. Not just because of the work, but for the experience of working directly with military policymakers, including the former senior intelligence advisor to General Petraeus and one of the chief architects of the U.S. strategy to end the insurgency in Iraq. According to him (not me), I was one of his most trusted analysts and it was truly an honor to support his efforts during my nearly five year stint at the DIA J2. It was my first time serving as an analyst in an agency where I got called into the offices of 1-, 2-, 3-, and 4-star Generals and Admirals who wanted to get the analytical perspective straight from the analysts. Not through senior middle men. It was an amazing experience.

Funny story. So, I started working at the J2 in the Pentagon at the onset of the Iraq War. I'd come from a law enforcement background not military. My first assignment was to prepare and send the "POTUS" brief every morning--a death by PowerPoint presentation. I didn't know what a "POTUS" was. Every day I'm thinking "What the heck is a POTUS???" For two weeks, I prepared the brief, afraid to ask because I didn't want to look like I didn't know what I was doing. Imagine my shock and surprise when I found out the "POTUS" was the President of the United States--at that time it was President Bush. When I think about it now, all I can say is "Ugh!" Thank goodness I'd been doing a good job. If I were you, I wouldn't be surprised if one of the five books in the J.J. McCall Series featured a story centered on scandal at the Pentagon. :)

So your question for the day...what's the J2? And who is the current DIA Director (who happened to serve as the J2 while I was there--super great leader to work with by the way)? If you get either or both of those questions correct, you will get a free advanced copy of The Seven Year Itch: A J.J. McCall Novel. (As always, no time limit on your answers.)


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