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Tag: CIA director

Hawkish CIA Director Pompeo May Replace Tillerson As Secretary of State

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

If all goes as planned, hawkish CIA Director Mike Pompeo will leave his post to become President Trump’s next secretary of state, replacing Rex W. Tillerson, whose relationship with the White House has become strained.

The New York Times also reports that Pompeo likely would be succeeded at the CIA by Sen. Tom Cotton, an Arkansas Republican who has aligned himself with the president on national security issues. 

Trump has not officially approved the plan, which was pitched by White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly.

Pompeo, a hard-line former Congressman from the Tea Party wing of the party, has expressed more hawkish views toward Iran, North Korea and other prominent issues.

A West Point graduate, Pompeo has been unusually vociferous and political for a CIA director, soft-pedaling the link between Trump’s campaign and Russia and endorsing regime change in North Korea. 

Sen. Tim Cotton

Some questions remain about whether Cotton would be tapped to become the CIA director. He’s a strong ally on immigration and national security, but Republicans are hesitant to put a Senate seat in play during what could be disastrous mid-term elections for the party.

When asked by Fox News whether he’d take the CIA position, Cotton didn’t answer directly. 

“I’m very proud to be representing the people of Arkansas,” he said.

The New York Times reports that another potential candidate for the top CIA post is Robert S. Harward, a retired Navy vice admiral who turned down the national security position after Michael T. Flynn’s abrupt departure.

CIA Director: I Was a Supporter of Communist Party in Mid-1970s

CIA Director John Brennan

CIA Director John Brennan

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

CIA Director John Brennan revealed that he was once a communist sympathizer in the mid-1970s because he was disgusted by Watergate and the political landscape that helped produce it.

Brennan was in college at the time and voted for Communist Party nominee Gus Hall, New York Magazine reports. 

By 1980, Brennan said he was no longer a Communist sympathizer and realized that capitalism was a far better system.

Brennan said he “froze” when he was taking a polygraph test when entering the CIA.

“This was back in 1980, and I thought back to a previous election where I voted, and I voted for the Communist Party candidate.”

Brennan added, “I said I was neither Democratic or Republican, but it was my way, as I was going to college, of signaling my unhappiness with the system, and the need for change. I said I’m not a member of the Communist Party, so the polygrapher looked at me and said, ‘OK,’ and when I was finished with the polygraph and I left and said, ‘Well, I’m screwed.’”

Despite his past, he received national security clearance.

Other Stories of Interest

Ex-CIA Director: Trump’s Fiery Rhetoric About Muslims Is Endangering U.S. Security

donald trump rallyBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Donald Trump’s rhetoric about Muslims is endangering American security, former CIA Director Michael Hayden said.

“The jihadist narrative is that there is undying enmity between Islam and the modern world, so when Trump says they all hate us, he’s using their narrative … he’s feeding their recruitment video,” Hayden said, the Washington Examiner reports.

Hayden was speaking at a festival in the U.K.

Hayden also said Facebook may have a greater influence on security than government agencies.
“Your habits are all geared to protecting privacy against the government because that was always the traditional threat,” Hayden said. “That is no longer the pattern, it is the private sector … we are going through a cultural adjustment.”

Petraeus Reaches Deal to Plead Guilty to Misdemeanor But Will Likely Not Face Prison Time

By Adam Goldman and Sari Horwitz
Washington Post

WASHINGTON — Lawyers for David H. Petraeus have reached an agreement with federal prosecutors for the retired general and former CIA director to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge in connection with his handling of classified materials.

As part of the agreement, Petraeus admitted to improperly retaining classified material, according to documents filed Tuesday in federal court in Charlotte. Petraeus has also acknowledged he misled FBI investigators, officials said.

Federal prosecutors will not seek prison time for the retired four-star general but instead will ask a judge to impose a probationary period of two years.

To read more click here. 

Pentagon: A Top Candidate for Next CIA Director, Michael Vickers, Disclosed Classified Information

Michael Vickers
Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

 Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence Michael Vickers, among the possible candidates for the next CIA director, leaked classified information about the hunt for Osama bin Laden to filmmakers of an acclaimed movie, Pentagon investigators have concluded, McClatchy Newspapers reports.

The Justice Department, however, has declined to pursue criminal prosecution since receiving the case in September, McClatchy reported, citing two senior U.S. officials.

Investigators with the Pentagon’s Inspector General’s Office said Vickers disclosed to filmmakers of “Zero Dark Thirty” the name of a U.S. Special Operations Command officer involved in planning the May 2011 raid on bin Laden’s hideout in Pakistan.

Revealing classified information is a crime.

Vickers is among the possible candidates to replace retired Army Gen. David Petraeus as CIA director.

“Mike Vickers is an outstanding defense and intelligence professional and is well respected inside the Department of Defense and the intelligence community,” Pentagon spokesman George Little said.

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