The Federal Bureau of Investigation has quietly developed a new way to measure its success in the war on terror: counting the number of terror threats it has “disrupted” in a year.
But good luck trying to figure out what that number means, how it was derived, or why it doesn’t jibe with any other law enforcement statistic, most notably, the number of terror suspects actually charged or arrested.
In the section on “Performance Measures” in the FBI’s latest financial statement, the bureau reports 440 “terror disruptions” in the 12-month period ending on September 30, 2015. That’s compared to 214 in fiscal year 2014. And it’s more than three times the 2015 “target” of 125.
In a vacuum, that would appear to suggest that the FBI’s terror-fighting mission — which sucked up $5.3 billion, or 54 percent of the bureau’s $9.8 billion budget in 2015 — is exceeding expectations.