30405 4/8/2005 12:16 05BUCHAREST881 Embassy Bucharest SECRET 05STATE60796 This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available. S E C R E T BUCHAREST 000881
STATE DEPT FOR EUR/NCE - WILLIAM SILKWORTH ALSO FOR EUR/PGI JODY BUCKNEBERT AND DS/T/ATA
E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/07/2015 TAGS: PTER, PREL, RO SUBJECT: GWOT ASSESSMENT: POST FEEDBACK FROM EMBASSY BUCHAREST
REF: STATE 60796
Classified By: CHARGE' D'AFFAIRES A.I. THOMAS L. DELARE FOR REASONS 1.4 B, C AND D
1. (S) Embassy Bucharest welcomes this opportunity to provide input on strategies to advance GWOT objectives in Romania and the region. Romania is a staunch ally in the GWOT; its public manifestations of support include the presence of about 1350 troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and strong support for U.S. anti-terror initiatives in the UN and other international bodies. USG intelligence agencies enjoy an excellent level of cooperation with their Romanian counterparts and Romania's political leaders and intelligence services have demonstrated a commitment to fighting terrorism at home and abroad. Furthermore, the Romanian entities responsible for developing and implementing counterterrorism strategies welcome U.S. input and guidance. The GOR has also taken recent steps to improve the legal framework designed to deal with terrorist incidents.
2. (S) Nonetheless, the recent kidnapping in Iraq of three Romanian journalists and the ongoing hostage situation have revealed that Romania lacks adequate institutional mechanisms to ensure a rapid and accurate flow of sensitive information between the Romanian intelligence services and from them to political leaders, including the President and his senior advisers. Romania's domestic counterterrorism capacity also suffers from uneven levels of training between various elements that are potential "first responders" to a terrorist attack, a stovepipe management style that unnecessarily restricts information flow in both ordinary management situations and crises, and an inefficient decision making process within the Interior Ministry. These limitations partly reflect the fact that Romania is a relatively poor country with limited resources to devote to counterterrorism initiatives. They also belie an institutional framework and management style derived from ungainly and opaque communist-era models.
3. (S) Given these concerns, Post notes that the State Department sponsored Anti-Terrorism Assistance (ATA) program has been demonstrably successful in a number of regions, including Latin America. Embassy Bucharest strongly recommends that an ATA team visit Romania and conduct a comprehensive assessment of Romanian counterterrorism capacities and limitations. Following this assessment, Post recommends implementation of an ATA program developed for Romania, targeting both operational elements (including "first responders") and institutional development of entities charged with counterterrorism operations. Additionally, Post recommends using the full tool kit of public diplomacy programs to support institution building, including within the presidency and the bureaucracy. DELARE