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IPFS News Link • 911 / World Trade Center

9/11 triggered huge counter-terrorism spend

 THE US intelligence budget is vast, publicly announced last year as $US75 billion, which is 2½ times the size it was on September 10, 2001. But the figure doesn't include many military activities or domestic counter-terrorism programs.

At least 20 per cent of the US government organizations that exist to fend off terrorist threats were established or refashioned in the wake of 9/11. Many that existed before the attacks grew to historic proportions as the Bush administration and Congress gave agencies more money than they were capable of responsibly spending.

The Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency, for example, has gone from 7500 employees in 2002 to 16,500. The budget of the National Security Agency, which conducts electronic eavesdropping, doubled. FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces grew from 35 to 106.
Nine days after the 9/11 attacks, Congress committed $US40 billion beyond what was in the federal budget to fortify domestic defenses and launch a global offensive against al-Qaeda. It followed that up with an additional $US36.5 billion in 2002 and $US44 billion in 2003. That was only a beginning.

With the quick infusion of money, military and intelligence agencies multiplied. Twenty-four organizations were created by the end of 2001, including the Office of Homeland Security and the Foreign Terrorist Asset Tracking Task Force. In 2002, 37 more were created to track weapons of mass destruction, collect threat tips and coordinate the new focus on counterterrorism. That was followed the next year by 36 new organizations; another 26 in 2004; 31 more in 2005; 32 more in 2006; and 20 or more each in 2007, 2008 and 2009.