DIRECTORS OF DIA
 
ABOUT / HISTORY / DIRECTORS / LTG JAMES WILLIAMS

LTG James Williams, USA
September 1981 - September 1985

Lt. Gen. James Williams focused the Agency on enhancing support to tactical and theater commanders, improving capabilities to meet major wartime intelligence requirements, and strengthening indications and warning assets.

In response to a requirement to improve intelligence support to the warfighting capabilities of combatant commands, the functional manager for intelligence processing was established in 1982. Two years later, the Central America Joint Intelligence Team was established as an interagency analytical task organization focused on insurgency in Central America. DIA also created the Intelligence Communications Architecture to improve DoD's ability to disseminate national-level intelligence to tactical commanders during contingency situations.

 

"A high point in Williams' directorship was the Agency's move to the Defense Intelligence Analysis Center at Bolling Air Force Base, which consolidated major functions under one roof."

 

The concept of intelligence as a force multiplier in crises became a predominant theme in planning as DIA began structuring an all-source integrated data base to support the U.S. military in assessing threats as they existed in the field. Williams established a Research Crisis Support Center at the Defense Intelligence Analysis Center to provide a centralized, operationally secure, all-source, crisis management center to support the National Military Intelligence Center and combatant commands. In an effort to enhance intelligence support to deployed commands, DIA introduced the concept of the National Military Intelligence Support Team in 1983. DIA activated NMISTs to augment intelligence support worldwide to the military during crisis operations.

When 6,000 U.S. troops invaded Grenada during Operation URGENT FURY in 1983, DIA responded to numerous formal taskings for briefings, papers or information, and distributed a wide variety of intelligence summaries to assist field commanders during the operation. The planning process for URGENT FURY was greatly facilitated by a number of intelligence products that had been prepared as early as 1979, bringing high praise for DIA's support and services. Other DIA analytical efforts during this time centered on the continuing crises in Nicaragua, Lebanon, Iran, Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the Soviet shootdown of Korean Airlines Flight 007, the civil war in Chad, and unrest in the Philippines.

The capstone of the effort to build a corps of civilian professionals in DIA came in December 1981, when President Ronald Reagan signed Public Law 97-89. This enabled legislation for a Defense Intelligence Senior Executive Service. A high point in Williams' directorship was the Agency's move to the Defense Intelligence Analysis Center at Bolling Air Force Base, which consolidated major functions under one roof. The building was dedicated on May 23, 1984.