In memorandum Tom Armour

February 13, 2007

I learnt last night of the death of Tom Armour at home in Reston with his family this Sunday. Last June he had an operation for a cancerous brain tumor and we all thought he had recovered, but with great regret this was not the case. There will be a military funeral at Arlington and a memorial. Most readers will not know Tom. He was a wise, intelligent and gentle man. Program manager for Genoa, the DARPA programme which first funded the development of narrative and complex adaptive systems techniques for anti-terrorism. I remember meeting him for the first time at a Washington DC Hotel where we were taking part in a beauty parade of people involved in a the use of story. He understood a set of complex and novel ideas, and their implications well before many other people. For the next few years he was a constant source of support and intelligence both before and after 911 as we developed the ideas. He was a CIA officer and a patriot in the best sense of the word. I came to the Genoa project with many of the normal prejudices of the European Left against the Agency. He challenged that stereotype in the best of all possible ways, by example and through conversation. I am proud to have counted him as a friend and the world is a worse place for his absence.

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