Let the Games Begin!

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Let the Games Begin!

Post by Corlyss_D » Mon May 08, 2006 5:12 pm

Watch the spineless Republicans scramble to adopt Democratic positions during the hearings: namely that a military man should not run the CIA (despite the fact that several have, because god forbid that leadership should square away the wayward careerists in the CIA who have supplied the Democrats with so much ammo to delegitimize the Bush administration) and that the NSA surveillance program should be controlled by the Congress.

The Agency Problem
Will the next CIA director be willing to challenge CIA careerists and continue the reforms of the dysfunctional bureaucracy?
by The Editors
05/15/2006, Volume 011, Issue 33

LATE FRIDAY MORNING, MAY 5, the White House called the chairmen of the House and Senate intelligence committees with urgent news: CIA director Porter Goss would announce his resignation at the White House in a few hours. The news came as a surprise. Although insiders knew that Goss was increasingly at odds with Director of National Intelligence John Negroponte, there were few indications this would lead to Goss's departure just a year and a half into his tenure.

Perhaps Goss left mostly for personal reasons: He had said the job was a draining one. Perhaps he left because he lost a turf war to Negroponte: Goss recently told close associates that he was frustrated with Negroponte's micromanaging. In particular, he objected to Negroponte's plan to move intelligence analysts from the CIA to Negroponte's bailiwick, the DNI. Goss wanted to bring CIA operatives and analysts closer together, including dispatching formerly desk-bound analysts to the field in order to provide them a better sense of the collection process. Negroponte instead planned to move significant analytical resources to the DNI, out of the CIA and further from the field, a plan that led some at the CIA to argue that Negroponte was trying to dismantle the agency out from under Goss.

We're inclined to side with Goss in this dispute. But we are concerned that Goss left, or was eased out, for reasons of greater policy significance. And if this is the case, Goss's leaving is not a good sign. Goss is a political conservative and an institutional reformer. He is pro-Bush Doctrine and pro-shaking-up-the-CIA.

John Negroponte, so far as we can tell, shares none of these sympathies. Negroponte is therefore more in tune with large swaths of the intelligence community and the State Department. If Negroponte forced Goss out and is allowed to pick Goss's successor--if Goss isn't replaced with a reformer committed to fighting and winning the war on terror, broadly and rightly understood--then Goss's departure will prove to have been a weakening moment in an administration increasingly susceptible to moments of weakness.

We hope the president will select a new CIA director who is willing--eager, even--to challenge CIA careerists, and who will continue the reforms of that dysfunctional bureaucracy that started under Goss. We hope the new director will be an independent thinker, someone who is not cowed by criticism from a vocal (and highly partisan) crew of recently retired intelligence officials, or worried by complaints from the New York Times editorial board, or influenced by sniffing from State Department bureaucrats.

In short, this person should retain a measure of independence from the man he'll report to, John Negroponte. In his brief tenure as director of national intelligence, Negroponte has shown himself awfully accommodating of the intelligence establishment. For example, when that establishment fought efforts by this magazine and others to release documents captured in postwar Iraq, Negroponte fought alongside it. When calls for openness came from the chairmen of congressional intelligence committees, he sided with the bureaucracy. Only when President Bush made clear his desire to see those documents released to the world did Negroponte acquiesce.

Negroponte fought the release for two reasons. First, he wanted to protect the intelligence community bureaucracy that had collectively dropped the ball on exploiting and utilizing the valuable information in the documents. Three years after the beginning of the Iraq war, less than 5 percent of the documents captured in postwar Iraq had been fully translated and analyzed. That is an embarrassment. It is instructive that Negroponte spent more time explaining away that reality than changing it.

Second, Negroponte argued repeatedly in internal discussions that he was concerned that the release of some documents would embarrass erstwhile allies who had been in bed with Saddam Hussein. This is not a frivolous concern. Relations with allies have a direct bearing on the cooperation we receive going forward from liaison intelligence services. But neither is it the sole concern. Negroponte gave an awful lot of weight to this argument, and almost none to the fact that there was, and is, a massive assault underway, at home and abroad, against the Bush administration's probity in going to war against Saddam Hussein--and that releasing these documents could bear importantly on this debate.

The CIA is broken. It has been for years. There is too much anti-Bush leaking and not enough creative thinking. There are too many bureaucrats and not enough risk-takers. Goss tried to reform the agency and to enlist it in the good fight on behalf of the nation's foreign policy. Will his successor?
http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/P ... 0waali.asp
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Post by Corlyss_D » Mon May 08, 2006 5:46 pm

Nominee for CIA Chief Hayden Faces a Fight

By KATHERINE SHRADER, The Associated Press
May 8, 2006 5:58 PM (44 mins ago)

WASHINGTON - President Bush's nomination of Gen. Michael Hayden as CIA chief ignited a confirmation fight Monday over the intelligence veteran's ties to the controversial eavesdropping program and his ability to be independent from the military establishment.

With Hayden at his side, Bush urged senators to promptly approve the former National Security Agency head, who one year ago was confirmed unanimously to be the nation's first deputy director of national intelligence.

"Mike Hayden is supremely qualified for this position," Bush said in the Oval Office. "He knows the intelligence community from the ground up."

CIA Director Porter Goss announced his resignation last week after tussling with Hayden and his boss, National Intelligence Director John Negroponte, about the agency's autonomy and direction.

Even before Hayden's nomination became official, Republican as well as Democratic lawmakers had begun questioning whether he was the right choice to head the spy agency.

Hayden is credited with designing the NSA's warrantless surveillance program. Disclosure of the program late last year sparked an intense civil-liberties debate over whether the president can order the monitoring of international calls and e-mails in the U.S. without court warrants.

California Rep. Jane Harman, the House Intelligence Committee's top Democrat, joined colleagues in saying Hayden had become part the "White House spin machine" though intelligence professionals typically eschew partisan politics.

Senate Judiciary Chairman Arlen Specter, R-Pa., has said that he would use a Hayden nomination to raise questions about the legality of the eavesdropping program, and he has not ruled out holding up the nomination in the meantime.

It will fall to Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Pat Roberts, R-Kan., to keep order on the panel as it considers Hayden's confirmation. But even Roberts has acknowledged there is concern about someone from the military heading the CIA. Several Republicans, including House Intelligence Chairman Peter Hoekstra, R-Mich., have called Hayden's military background troublesome in this case.

Hayden, 61, would be the seventh military officer to head the CIA since 1946. But his nomination comes at a time when lawmakers are particularly concerned about the influence of Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld.

With Hayden's installation, active duty or retired military officers would run all the major spy agencies as well as the intelligence hub, the National Counterterrorism Center.

Susan Collins, the Maine Republican who is chairwoman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said Hayden has been candid even when his judgments differed from Rumsfeld. Still, she called on Hayden to consider retiring from the Air Force after more than 35 years "to send a signal of independence from the Pentagon."

Seeking to ease concerns about military leadership at the CIA, Negroponte said a retired veteran of the agency's clandestine service, Steve Kappes, is a leading contender to replace the CIA's current deputy director, Vice Adm. Albert Calland III.

Kappes left the CIA in 2004, after conflicts with Goss' top aides, nicknamed "the Gosslings" by detractors.

Many of those top aides were expected to soon leave. The first to go: Executive Director Kyle "Dusty" Foggo, who is retiring, an intelligence official said Monday.

The FBI is investigating whether Foggo's friend, defense contractor Brent Wilkes, provided prostitutes and hotel suites to a California congressman jailed for taking bribes in exchange for government contracts. Foggo is also under federal investigation in connection with the award of CIA contracts, according to a federal law enforcement official who spoke only on condition of anonymity because the probe is under way.

Hayden's associates expect him to try to smooth feelings within the troubled CIA, which has experienced an exodus of veterans in the past 18 months and has struggled since it lost its top spot among all other spy agencies with recent intelligence changes.

"Skirmishing about turf is always inevitable," said Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., an intelligence committee member who is undecided on Hayden. "In my mind, there is a question of how you can reconcile what he has said in the past about privacy and the NSA, with what is now on the public record about the program."

Hayden, a Pittsburgh Steelers football fan known for using sports metaphors, takes pride in his blue-collar roots. He drove a taxi on the side in college at Duquesne University, where he received his commission through the Reserve Officer Training Corps. He became a four-star general last year.

In 1999, Hayden was sent to supervise eavesdroppers and codebreakers at the NSA. He stayed to become its longest serving director and worked to keep the agency on pace with technological changes in communications.

Hayden is likely to face questions publicly and privately about what precisely he has in mind for the CIA. Goss and Negroponte disagreed over whether the CIA should share its top analysts and scientists who develop James Bond-like toys with other elements of the spy community, or keep them at the CIA's Virginia campus.

While complimentary of Goss, Negroponte said believes the Hayden-Kappes team will improve the mood at the agency.

"That's going to be a boost for the morale out there," he said, "and I think they're going to welcome this new leadership."


Associated Press Writer Mark Sherman contributed to this report.
Copyright 2006 The Associated Press.
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Post by Ralph » Mon May 08, 2006 9:34 pm

CIA morale has nowhere to go but up.

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Albert Einstein


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