Strong Intelligence on ISIS: President’s Daily Brief
A former Pentagon official confirms to Fox News that detailed and specific intelligence about the rise of ISIS was included in the PDB, or the President’s Daily Brief, for at least a year before the group took large swaths of territory beginning in June.
The official, who asked not to be identified because the PDB is considered the most authoritative, classified intelligence community product providing the President with analysis of sensitive international events, said the data was strong, and “granular” in detail, adding a policy maker “…could not come away with any other impression: This is getting bad.”
The official who has close knowledge of the process said the President, who reads the PDB unlike his predecessors who traditionally had the document briefed to them, was not known to come back to the intelligence community with further questions or “taskings.” Asked to describe the frequency, the former Pentagon official said “not generally.”
After suggestions that the administration may have been blindsided by the rise of ISIS, and that poor intelligence was to blame, the former Pentagon official said some of the intelligence was so good it was described as “exquisite” when the President drew a red line on chemical weapons use in Syria in 2012.
The source who is familiar with the deliberations said “(we) were ready to fire, on a moments notice, on a couple hundred targets,” but no order was given. In some cases, targets were tracked for a “long period of time” but then slipped away.
On whether the administration delayed acting on the Foley rescue, as first reported by the Sunday Times of London to be 30 days, the former Pentagon official confirmed there was significant delay, describing a White House that was racked with “hesitancy” and continually asking for “the intelligence to build up more.”
At the time, Fox News is told that a large, heavily armed compound, believed to be housing Foley, and other potential captives, was identified near the ISIS strong hold of Raqaa, Syria.