The Role of Intelligence in Ending the War in Bosnia in 1995

Title:                      The Role of Intelligence in Ending the War in Bosnia in 1995

Author:                 Timothy R. Walton

Walton, Timothy R. (2014), ed. The Role of Intelligence in Ending the War in Bosnia in 1995. Lanham: MD: Lexington Books

LCCN:    2014023490

DR1313.7.M54 R65 2014


  • Foreword: Navigating from war to peace: enduring challenges for presidents and citizens / Jonathan R. Alger — The historical and bureaucratic context of the declassified documents / Timothy R. Walton — Beyond Bosnia: ethnical reasoning in political deliberations about humanitarian intervention / Pia Antolic-Piper, William Hawk, David McGraw, and Mark Piper — New lessons from the War in Bosnia: an analysis using computational methods / Anamaria Berea — Conflict frames and the timing of U.S. intervention in Bosnia / John Hulsey and John A. Scherpereel — Analytic intelligence and bosnia policymaking in the Clinton Administration / Steven L. Burg — Explaining U.S. foreign policy toward Bosnia, 1993-95: national identity, credibility, and the “stalemate machine” / Bernd Kaussler, Jonathan Keller, and Yi Edward Yang — Towards a new social memory of the Bosnian genocide: countering al-Qaeda’s radicalization myth with the CIA “Bosnia, intelligence, and the Clinton presidency” archive / Frances Flannery — The impact of intelligence on DOD perceptions of the Bosnian Conflict, 1995 / Jonathan Smith — Fallen off the priority list: was Srebrenica an intelligence failure? / Bob De Graaff and Cees Wiebes — The compromises necessary to get the final deal / Timothy R. Walton.


Date Posted:      September 21, 2015

Compiled and Reviewed by Hayden B. Peake.[1]

Former CIA officer Timothy Walton has edited a collection of papers presented at the INTELLIGENCE AND THE TRANSITION FROM WAR TO PEACE conference, held at James Madison University (JMU) in March 2014. After a thoughtful introduction by JMU President Jonathan R. Alger, Walton sets the historical context in a paper that summarizes the role of intelligence in government in general and Bosnia in particular. He makes the point that intelligence supports policy—and that is the sense in which it is applied in this volume: no operational cases are included; only treated are policy situations in which use is made of various disseminated products. Most of the papers presented were sourced to documents from the Bosnia, Intelligence, and the Clinton Presidency collection, released in 2013 by CIA.[2]

The book’s title is slightly misleading. While many of the 10 papers do discuss the policymaking pertaining to intelligence products on the Bosnian war, other topics are covered. Examples include a paper on ethical reasoning, another on an unusual analytic technique called “text mining and sentiment analysis,” (pp. 35ff) and one on a statistical technique used to study the timing of the US intervention in Bosnia. A paper by two Dutch academics, Professor Bob de Graaf and senior researcher Cees Wiebes, addresses the question, “Was Srebrenica an intelligence failure?” In the final paper, Walton assesses both the compromises the NSC deemed necessary to get a deal that would end the war and the intelligence that contributed to that decision.

The Role of Intelligence in Ending the War in Bosnia in 1995 is a valuable addition to the literature on an area that has not previously received much attention.

[1] Hayden Peake, “Intelligence Officer Bookshelf,” The Intelligencer: Journal of U. S. Intelligence Stuidies (21, 2, Spring/Summer 2015, pp. 124-125)Hayden Peake is the Curator of the CIA’s Historical Intelligence Collection. He has served in the Directorate of Science and Technology and the Directorate of Operations. Most of his reviews cited have appeared in recent unclassified editions of ClA’s Studies in Intelligence. These and many other reviews and articles may be found online at

[2]!ligence-and-clinton-presidency is the link cited by Hayden Peake, but it is a broken link. The foia cite at CIA does contain many papers on Bosnia, Intelloigence, and the Clinton Presidency. Enter search parameters at the address

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