Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Can Burns Change the CIA? — Ray McGovern

In nominating former Deputy Secretary of State William Burns to be CIA director, President-elect Joe Biden has chosen a highly experienced diplomat to lead a hydra-headed agency.

But, if past is precedent, the highest hydras who head calcified fiefdoms at CIA can be expected to resist any real control from the top. They are more likely to try to co-opt top management or make end runs around it. This is not new.

Most senior CIA operations officers, in particular, have never been comfortable with meaningful supervision, lest it lead to reining them in or impinging on their ample budgets. With secrecy always in play (including strict application of the “need-to-know” principle), Burns will need a good deputy — preferably a strong outsider — to avoid being blind-sided — or diddled.

Burns lacks proven experience managing organizations as large and variegated as the agency, so the jury is out on whether he will be able to do it.

One endemic challenge is to ensure that substantive intelligence analysis is not tainted by CIA’s operations. In recent years, analysts have been thrown together with operations officers, making it very difficult for analysts to maintain the distance needed to evaluate objectively the efficacy of policies and actions in which operations colleagues close by are fully engaged....
Probably a better question is how likely it is that to happen. I would say not very likely that a change in leadership will make a significant difference in culture and outcomes without a housecleaning. 

Better to separate the intelligence and operations sections into different agencies, or, better, just abolish the operations section and fold it into Special Forces under the Pentagon where it properly belongs. As it stands, the CIA is a political agency rather than a military one, so there is no way to "de-politicize" it.

Can Burns Change the CIA?
Ray McGovern, co-founder of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, and retired 27-year career CIA whose tasks included preparing and briefing The President’s Daily Brief and leading the Soviet Foreign Policy Branch

See also
“I’ve been a journalist for about 25 years and I was educated to lie, to betray and not to tell the truth to the public. The truth will come out one day, the truth won’t die.” — Dr. Udo Ulfkotte — German Journalist and Whistleblower
Intel Today
Remembering Dr Udo Ulfkotte (January 20 1960 – January 13 2017) [Mind Control & The Spiral of Silence]
Ludwig De Braeckeleer


The CIA is the operational arm of the State Department.

The Grayzone
US backs al-Qaeda in Yemen while dubbing its Houthi enemies ‘terrorists’
Ben Norton

Meanwhile at home.

Sputnik International
Governors Urge Americans to Skip Biden's Inauguration Over Security Concerns


Capitol Police Officers Suspended, Over A Dozen Investigated For Supporting Pro-Trump Demonstrators
Tyler Durden

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