Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group

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The Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group (SP&I) of the Australian Government Department of Defence is responsible for defence diplomacy, strategic policy, international security, and military intelligence coordination and advice to the Prime Minister of Australia, Minister for Defence, Secretary of the Department of Defence, and Chief of the Defence Force.[1] The Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group is led by the Deputy Secretary for Strategic Policy and Intelligence and comprises four policy divisions and three intelligence agencies, which are the Australian Defence Organisation members of the Australian Intelligence Community.

The Group has existed in various forms since the Cold War within the Department of Defence with responsibilities for defence policy, strategy, intelligence, and international policy. It has been known as the Defence Strategy and Intelligence Group, the Defence Strategy Executive, the Defence Intelligence and Security Group, the Defence Intelligence, Security and International Policy Group, and the Defence Intelligence Group. The current SP&I Group was established on 8 February 2016 as a key recommendation of the First Principles Review of the Australian Defence Organisation, integrating all policy, strategy and intelligence functions of the Australian Government Department of Defence.[2]

The Deputy Secretary for Strategic Policy and Intelligence can be seen as the Australian combined equivalent of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy of the United States Department of Defense.

Deputy Secretaries[edit]

The current position of Deputy Secretary for Strategic Policy and Intelligence traces its origins back to the position of Deputy Secretary "B", the principal policy official within the Department of Defence. Under the tenure of Secretary of Defence Arthur Tange from 1970 to 1979, the position of Deputy Secretary "B" was responsible for force development and analysis, strategic and international policy, and intelligence and security.

The inaugural Deputy Secretary "B" was Gordon Blakers from 1966 to 1978, followed by William Pritchett from 1978 to 1979, George Cawsey from 1979 to 1981, Alan Wrigley from 1982 to 1985, and John M. Moten from 1985 to 1988.

Deputy Secretary "B" was changed to Deputy Secretary for Strategy and Intelligence in 1998 with the tenure of Paul Dibb from 1988 to 1991, followed by Allan Hawke from 1991 to 1993, Ric Smith from 1994 to 1995, and Hugh White from 1995 to 2000.

In 2000, the Department of Defence went through a restructure with the separation of the policy and intelligence functions. Richard Brabin-Smith was the Deputy Secretary for Strategic Policy from 2000 to 2002 whilst Shane Carmody was Deputy Secretary for Intelligence and Security from 2001-2002. Shane Carmody also served as the Deputy Secretary for Strategy from 2003 to 2006 whilst Ron Bonighton served as Deputy Secretary for Intelligence and Security from 2002 to 2005, with Shane Carmody concurrently serving as Deputy Secretary for Intelligence and Security and Deputy Secretary for Strategy from 2005 to 2006. From 2006, Stephen Merchant was Deputy Secretary for Intelligence until 2011 alongside Mike Pezzullo as Deputy Secretary for Strategy until 2009. Peter Jennings was as Deputy Secretary for Strategy from 2009 to 2012, whilst Steve Meekin was Deputy Secretary for Intelligence and Security from 2012 to 2016 and Peter Baxter as Deputy Secretary for Strategy from 2013 to 2016.

Following the First Principles Review of Defence, Peter Baxter became the first Deputy Secretary for Strategic Policy and Intelligence in 2016 and was succeeded by Rebecca Skinner later that year.[3]

Intelligence Agencies[edit]

The Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group also coordinates the policy parameters of the three Australian military intelligence agencies, staffed by civilian and Australian Defence Force personnel, of the Australian Intelligence Community.

Defence Intelligence Organisation[edit]

The Defence Intelligence Organisation (DIO) is the national military intelligence and intelligence assessment agency that provides services and advice at the national security level with the mandate to support the Australian Defence Force, Department of Defence and the Australian Government and national security decision-making and to assist with the planning and conduct of Australian Defence Force operations.[4]

Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation[edit]

The Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation (AGO) was established by amalgamating the Australian Imagery Organisation, the Directorate of Strategic Military Geographic Information, and the Defence Topographic Agency to provide geospatial intelligence, from imagery and other sources, in support of the Australian Defence Force and national security interests.[5]

Australian Signals Directorate[edit]

The Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) is responsible for collection, analysis and distribution of foreign signals intelligence and is the national authority on communications, information, cyber and computer security. The ASD also includes the Cyber Security Operations Centre which coordinates and assists with operational responses to cyber events of national importance and provides government with a consolidated understanding of the cyber threat through its intrusion detection, analytic and threat assessment capabilities.[6]

Policy Divisions[edit]

The Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group also combines the strategic, international, and industry policy functions of the Australian Government Department of Defence.

Strategic Policy Division[edit]

The Strategic Policy Division develops policy, military strategy and strategic planning and advice for the Australian Government, senior Defence leaders and other government agencies on the strategic implications of defence and national security matters.[7] The Division comprises 4 branches.

Military Strategy Branch[edit]

The Military Strategy Branch implements strategic policy and provides the necessary strategic guidance including shaping and influencing, strategic reviews and papers, deliberate planning guidance for operations, strategic war gaming and the production of products that direct the deployment, employment and development of the ADF, including capability, through military strategies, future warfare concepts, strategic doctrine and military strategic policy.[8]

Strategic Policy Branch[edit]

The Strategic Policy Branch develops high-level strategic policy guidance for ADF capability development, ADF readiness and Australia's international defence interests; and develops high-level strategic guidance documents, such as the Defence Planning Guidance and Defence Updates.[9]

Arms Control Branch[edit]

The Arms Control Branch provides policy advice on arms control and proliferation issues, and contributes to multilateral, international non-proliferation and export control regimes. The Branch also coordinates Defence involvement in certain international programs, including the Proliferation Security Initiative.[10]

Intelligence Policy Integration Branch[edit]

The Intelligence Policy Integration Branch coordinates the policy and integration of intelligence from the Australian Signals Directorate, the Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation, and the Defence Intelligence Organisation and engagement with the broader Australian Intelligence Community for the Department of Defence.

International Policy Division[edit]

The International Policy Division provides strategic-level foreign policy advice to the Australian Government on the central issues of Australia's defence policy with a focus on the Asia-Pacific region, including international defence relations and Australian Defence Force operations overseas.[11] The Division comprises 4 branches and numerous overseas postings.

South East Asia Branch[edit]

The South East Asia Branch provides policy guidance on Australia's defence interests in South East Asia, and manages bilateral defence relationships within the region and engagement with ASEAN. The Branch also manages international engagement on counter-terrorism and multilateral regional issues.[12]

Global Interests Branch[edit]

The Global Interests Branch provides policy guidance on Australia's defence interests, peacekeeping operations, and relationships with Afghanistan, countries in the Middle East including Israel, South Asian countries including India and Pakistan, African countries, Canada, European countries, and multilateral institutions such as the European Union, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, and the United Nations.[13]

Major Powers Branch[edit]

The Major Powers Branch provides policy guidance on Australia's interests with the United States of America and in North Asia and bilateral defence relationships with the United States of America through the US Alliance Policy Section,[14] and Japan, the Republic of Korea, and the People's Republic of China. The Branch also provides policy guidance on joint facilities and technical programs, such as the Pine Gap defence facility with the United States.[15]

Pacific and Timor-Leste Branch[edit]

The Pacific and Timor-Leste Branch provides policy advice on the implications of developments in the Pacific for Australia's security interests, and manages bilateral defence relationships with Pacific Island countries as well as engagement with the Pacific Islands Forum and the management of the Defence Cooperation Program in the Pacific, including the Pacific Boat Program.[16]

Overseas Representations[edit]

The Australian Government Department of Defence maintains military attachés and Australian Defence Force staff officers to develop Australia's international defence relationships, usually co-located with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade diplomatic missions around the world. In Commonwealth of Nations countries, Australian defence officers posted to Australian High Commissions are titled as Defence Advisers. Otherwise for all other Australian diplomatic missions, defence officers are titled Defence Attachés. Defence Attachés/Advisers are usually of the rank of Colonel or Lieutenant Colonel (or naval and air equivalents). Uniquely, the Australian Defence Organisation maintains major staffs in Indonesia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Each Defence Staff is composed of permanent attachés/advisers from the Australian Army, Royal Australian Navy, and Royal Australian Air Force.

Defence Staff, Washington[edit]

The Australian Defence Staff in Washington DC is led by a two-star rank officer and works to build relationships with the United States and promote Australian defence and security interests. It is composed of attaches from each service of the Australian Defence Force. The Royal Australian Navy Naval Attaché serves as the Chief of Navy's representative in North America and provides maritime force advice. The Australian Army Military Attaché serves as the Chief of Army's representative in North America and provides land force advice. The Royal Australian Air Force Air Attaché serves as the Chief of Air Force's representative in North America and provides airpower and aerospace force advice. The Staff is also composed of the Defence Policy Counsellor responsible for international and strategic policy and intelligence functions, the Defence Science Counsellor serving as the Chief Defence Scientist's representative in North America and providing research and development advice, and the Defence Materiel Counsellor serving as the Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group's representative and providing acquisition advice.

There is also a Defence Liaison at the Australia Consulate-General in Honolulu, Hawaii, responsible for managing relations with the United States Pacific Command.

Defence Staff, London[edit]

The Australian Defence Staff in London is led by a one-star rank officer. It is composed of advisers from each service of the Australian Defence Force. The Royal Australian Navy Naval Adviser is responsible for managing all RAN personnel in the UK, maritime force advice, and liaison with the Royal Navy. The Australian Army Adviser is responsible for military advice, liaison with the British Army, and is the Formation Commander for all Australian Army personnel serving in the UK. The Royal Australian Air Force Adviser is responsible for managing all RAAF personnel in the UK, aerospace force advice, and liaison with the Royal Air Force. The Assistant Defence Adviser for Strategy is responsible for liaison with the Ministry of Defence, strategic interests, and the development of Australia–United Kingdom relations. The Assistant Defence Adviser for Joint Capability and Support is responsible for capability acquisition and joint development. The Defence Science Counsellor is the Chief Defence Scientist's representative and is responsible for liaising and adviser on science and technology. The Defence Materiel Counsellor represents the Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group and works on procurement and defence industry.

Defence Staff, Jakarta[edit]

The Australian Defence Staff in Jakarta is led by a one-star rank officer. It is composed of attaches from each service of the Australian Defence Force. The Royal Australian Navy Naval Attaché provides maritime force advice. The Australian Army Attaché provides land force advice. The Royal Australian Air Force Air Force Attaché provides airpower and aerospace force advice.

Multilateral Relations[edit]

For multilateral relations, there are Australian defence officers at the African Union (Defence Attache), the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the European Union (Defence Attache), and the United Nations in New York (Military Adviser).

Bilateral Relations[edit]

For bilateral relations, there are Australian defence officers in Cambodia (Defence Attaché), Canada (Defence Adviser), the People's Republic of China (Defence Attaché), East Timor (Defence Attaché), Fiji (Defence Adviser, also to Kiribati, Nauru, Samoa, Tonga, and Tuvalu), France (Defence Attaché), Germany (Defence Attaché), India (Defence Adviser, also to South Africa), Indonesia (Australian Defence Staff), Iraq (Defence Attaché), Japan (Defence Attaché), the Republic of Korea (Defence Attaché), Malaysia (Defence Adviser), New Zealand (Defence Adviser, also to the Cook Islands), Pakistan (Defence Adviser), Papua New Guinea (Defence Adviser), Philippines (Defence Attaché), Saudi Arabia (Defence Attaché also to Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, and Jordan), Singapore (Defence Adviser, also to Brunei), Solomon Islands (Defence Adviser, also to Vanuatu, Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of Marshall Islands), in Madrid for Southern Europe (Defence Attaché), Thailand (Defence Attaché, also to Myanmar), the United Arab Emirates (Defence Attaché, also to Qatar), the United Kingdom (the Australian Defence Staff, also to Ireland), in Washington DC for United States of America (the Australian Defence Staff), and Vietnam (Defence Attaché, also to Laos).

Contestability Division[edit]

The Contestability Division provides arms-length internal contestability functions across the capability life-cycles as to ensure the capability needs and requirements of the Australian Defence Organisation are aligned with strategy and resources.[17]

Defence Industry Policy Division[edit]

The Defence Industry Policy Division has responsibility for the implementation of defence industry policy, engagement and innovation as well as Australian export controls.[18]

Naval Shipbuilding Taskforce[edit]

The Naval Shipbuilding Taskforce was added to the group in July 2016 to facilitate government shipbuilding commitments.[19]

Defence Security and Vetting Service[edit]

The Defence Security and Vetting Service (DSVS) (formerly the Defence Security Authority) is an agency of the Department of Defence which supports the Department and the Australian Defence Force with protective security matters. The DSVS has responsibilities for developing and promulgating security policy that complies with Australian Government protective security policy, monitoring and reporting on security compliance, performance and risks, investigating serious and complex security incidents, granting security clearances for Defence and Defence Industry Security Program members, and conducting clearance revalidations and re-evaluations, assisting Groups and the Services with security policy implementation, and managing the Defence Industry Security Program. The DSVS also oversees the Australian Government Security Vetting Agency.[20]

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1] Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group
  2. ^ [2] Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group
  3. ^ Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainability Australia's Participation in the Pine Gap Enterprise by Desmond Ball
  4. ^ [3] Defence Intelligence Organisation About
  5. ^ AGO About
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-02-04. Retrieved 2012-02-03.  ASD About
  7. ^ [4] Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group
  8. ^ [5] Australian Government Directory information on the Military Strategy Branch
  9. ^ [6] Australian Government Directory information on the Strategic Policy Branch
  10. ^ [7] Australian Government Directory information on the Arms Control Branch
  11. ^ [8] Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group
  12. ^ [9] Australian Government Directory information on the South East Asia Branch
  13. ^ [10] Australian Government Directory information on the Global Interests Branch
  14. ^ [11] Department of Defence statement on the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations
  15. ^ [12] Department of Defence response to the Senate Continuing Order for Indexed List of Departmental or Agency Files
  16. ^ [13] Australian Government Directory information on the Pacific and Timor-Leste Branch
  17. ^ [14] Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group
  18. ^ [15] Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group
  19. ^ [16] Defence Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group
  20. ^ [17] DSA About

See also[edit]