NEWS | Sept. 23, 2020

INDOPACOM Hosts 13th Annual Indo-Pacific Intelligence Chiefs Conference

By Katherine Applebaum Intelligence Chiefs Conference

CAMP H.M. SMITH, Hawaii -- Military Intelligence leaders from 24 countries virtually attended the annual Indo-Pacific Intelligence Chiefs Conference (IPICC) Sept. 8. The conference is an opportunity for military intelligence leaders from across the Indo-Pacific region to meet and foster shared understanding on regional issues and advance regional intelligence cooperation on shared security challenges.

In its 13th year, this was the first virtual IPICC. The year’s conference theme – Sustaining Partnerships in Challenging Times through Persistence and Innovation – reflects the current global landscape.

“This pandemic is putting stress on everyone and despite the challenges each of our countries have faced, our mission focus has not faltered,” said Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. Robert Ashley Jr. in pre-recorded welcome remarks. “If 2020 has shown us anything, it is the importance of strategic partnerships in an ever-changing and unpredictable world.”

Topics for this year’s conference included: violent extremist organizations and terrorism; impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the security environment; maritime security challenges; regional stability and influence, to name a few. Participants also discussed their concerns on a variety of pressing issues facing the Indo-Pacific region as a way to strengthen shared understanding and enhance partnerships.

“IPICC is more than an annual conference. It is a community committed to sharing ideas, exchanging thoughts, and dealing with challenges,” said U.S. Indo-Pacific Command Director of Intelligence, RADM Mike Studeman. “Almost all of our challenges are shared challenges – answers come collectively, from diverse perspectives and insights, and together we can find best practices and approaches to offer our leaders.”