FAS | Intelligence | World Agencies | France | Defense ||||| Join FAS

DRM - Directorate of Military Intelligence
Direction du Renseignement Militaire

The DRM was created to solve intelligence shortcomings observed during the Gulf War at the instigation of the then-Interior Minister Pierre Joxe. The DRM was formed from the Military Intelligence Exploitation Center [CERM - Centre d'Exploitation du Renseignement Militaire], the Center for Information on Electromagnetic Radiation (CIREM - Centre d'Information sur les rayonnements Electrotmagnétiques), [Centre l'Interprétation Interarmées de l'Imagerie], the Inter-Army HELIOS Unit [l'Unité Interarmées HELIOS], the Inter-Army Imagery Interpretation Center and the Second Bureau of the Army and Air Force. Naval Intelligence was not absorbed by the DRM remaining under the Foreign Affairs Bureau (BRE) subordinate to the Operating Staff of the Navy in order better to follow naval developments around the world.

The CERM was a tactical intelligence unit subordinated to the chief of staff of the Armed (CEMA). CERM was the smallest and the most secretive unit of French tactical intelligence. It coordinated the intelligence units of the three armed forces, and was responsible for operational and strategic intelligence, while the three Armed Forces were responsible for tactical intelligence. CERM was located at the Inter-Army Intelligence Center (CIFR - Centre de Formation Interarmées du Renseignement (CIFR)) at Strasbourg. Created in 1974, CIFR was also integrated into the DRM.

The DRM's founding decree of 16 June 1992 tasks the Directorate with "planning, coordinating, and leading investigations and the use of military intelligence." But over time the Directorate's responsibilities have gradually evolved from purely military intelligence to intelligence of military interest to the political and strategic intelligence that is the primary resonsibility of the DGSE. The DRM is not a secret service, it is not responsible for internal security, and its employees are not spies, and the DRM has no "operations" branch comparable to the DGSE "action" department. The Directorate's activities include analyzing satellite and other electromagnetic imagery, and it is largely dependent on the collection resources of the Armed Forces, such as the BRGE - Intelligence and Electronic Warfare Regiment.

Its headquarters and activities devoted to administration and current intelligence are located in Paris, while technical and processing Sub-Directorates are located in Creil (Oise).

The DRM director reports directly to the Defense Ministry, rather than through the Armed Forces chiefs of staff to which the Directorate is attached.

The DRM employs approximately 2,100 civilian and military personnel.

Sources and Methods

FAS | Intelligence | World Agencies | France | Defense ||||| Join FAS

Created by John Pike
Maintained by Steven Aftergood
Updated Wednesday, November 26, 1997 5:56:23 PM