Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Director of National Intelligence Counterterrorism Map Misspells 'Israel'

    The Office of the Director of National Intelligence released its interactive 2014 Counterterrorism Calendar this week on the website of the National Counterterrorism Center.  The map provided with the calendar contains an embarrassing error, misspelling the name of the US's closest ally in the Middle East, Israel, as "Isreal."  The error can be seen by hovering over the tiny country with a computer's mouse:

    Israel is included in the map because of the activity of Hamas.  Information on that group is available in a pop-up window where the name of the country is spelled correctly:

    Despite Israel's inclusion on the larger map, three other countries are missing [circles added]:

    Libya and Tunisia are not labeled or highlighted on the map despite the State Department's recent designation of Ansar al-Shari’a groups in both countries as Foreign Terrorist Organizations.  The designations were announced on January 10, and the map was not released until January 14.  Also unlabeled on the map is Iran, recognized as one of the leading state sponsors of terrorism in the world.  The following appears in the State Department's most recent Country Reports on Terrorism:
In 2012, there was a clear resurgence of Iran’s state sponsorship of terrorism, through the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF), its Ministry of Intelligence and Security, and Tehran’s ally Hizballah, who remained a significant threat to the stability of Lebanon and the broader region. Attacks in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, and the Far East were linked to the IRGC-QF or Hizballah. In fact, Hizballah’s terrorist activity has reached a tempo unseen since the 1990s with attacks plotted in Southeast Asia, Europe, and Africa.
UPDATE: A spokesman for the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) writes: "Thank you (and Mr. Bier) for highlighting the typographical errors associated with our online interactive calendar. We’ve provided these edits to our graphics team who will correct the programming as soon as possible." He also notes that map was released by NCTC, not the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. NCTC reports to the Director of National Intelligence.

Note: A version of this article first appeared at The Weekly Standard.

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