CIA Director Nominee — Haspel’s Record Will Be Declassified… ‘As Much As Possible’

“We want to declassify as much as possible without jeopardizing someone’s what we call sources and methods. Every effort will be made to explain fully what her role was.”

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats

“I resigned as Chief Prosecutor at Guantanamo after I was directed to use evidence derived partly through Haspel’s torture program. Rather than being held accountable, those like Bybee, Bradbury & Haspel who OK’d torture moved up. Those who spoke out against torture did not.”

Colonel Morris Davis — Former Guantanamo Chief Prosecutor/Colonel (ret)

“Gina [Haspel] has her defenders. Some on the left. Some who are very reputable people. They depict her as being very competent, thorough, and professional. But no one ever accused the Nazis of being sloppy, inept, and amateurish. They were accused of war crimes.”

Larry Beinhart

Gina Cheri Haspel (born October 1 1956) is an American intelligence officer. She joined the Central Intelligence Agency in 1985. In February 2017 she was appointed by President Donald Trump as Deputy Director of the CIA. Gina Haspel has been named by President Trump to be the next CIA director, replacing Mike Pompeo.

On Wednesday April 4 2018, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said  that he expects to “declassify as much as possible” from the background of CIA Director Nominee Gina Haspel.

Yesterday (Monday April 9 2018 ), more than 50 former senior U.S. government officials — including eight former CIA directors or acting directors, three former directors of national intelligence and two former secretaries of state — sent a letter to the Senate intelligence committee to support her nomination.

The letter does not address the questions regarding Haspel’s involvement in the CIA torture programme and the subsequent destruction of evidence (81 videotapes).

According to anonymous sources, the letter was drafted because these former US officials are concerned that media coverage focused on Haspel’s role in the ‘black sites’ detention program and the CIA “Enhanced Interrogation Techniques” rather than on the full range of her career. Follow us on Twitter: @Intel_Today

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CIA Deputy Director Gina Haspel has been tapped to replace CIA Director Mike Pompeo as the new boss of the agency, after President Trump fired Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and named Pompeo his successor.

“I am proud to nominate the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Mike Pompeo, to be our new Secretary of State,” US President Donald Trump said on March 13 2018

Gina Haspel, the Deputy Director of the CIA, will be nominated to replace Director Pompeo and she will be the CIA’s first-ever female director, a historic milestone.”

If confirmed, Haspel will be the first female director of the CIA, but there is some controversy surrounding her nomination. Many believe that Haspel is the wrong person to lead the CIA, even if all who know her seem to agree that she is very competent, thorough, and professional.

Political pressure mounts on intelligence officials to release more information about Haspel’s past role in the CIA torture program and the destruction of the evidence.

On Wednesday April 4 2018, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats  offered relatively vague assurances.

“We want to declassify as much as possible without jeopardizing someone’s what we call sources and methods,” Coats told a gathering of defense reporters.

“Every effort will be made to explain fully what her role was.”

Coats asserted that Haspel’s role in the CIA’s interrogation has not been fully represented yet.

“Gina plans to be totally transparent in regards to this issue, and a lot of that has been mischaracterized,” he said.

“I have looked deeply into this, and she will be making that fully available to the relevant committees. … What is being alleged is simply not true.”

Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) has already come out against her while Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) is pressing the nominee to flesh out her record on the use of torture on detainees — particularly her handling of the CIA’s destruction of videotapes that depict two brutal detainee interrogations.

Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) has released the following statement about the need to fully vet Gina Haspel.

“To promote someone so heavily involved in the torture program to the top position at the CIA, the agency responsible for one of the darkest chapters in our history, is a move that I’m very wary of. Her experience may have served her well as deputy, but the top position is another matter entirely.”

Amnesty International has called upon President Donald Trump to withdraw his nomination of Gina Haspel to the post of Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

The CIA has issued a press release to inform the media that there is a broad bipartisan support for Gina Haspel’s nomination to be CIA Director from distinguished National Security Leaders.

Among ranks and files, the opinion is divided. Former CIA officer Bob Baer wrote:

“I supervised Gina Haspel when I worked at the Central Intelligence Agency. I found her to be smart, tough and effective.

Foreign liaison services who have worked with her uniformly walked away impressed. Out of all of the chaos coming out of the White House these days, the one bit of promising news is the nomination of Haspel as the new CIA director.”

Former CIA Officer John Kiriakou disagrees.

“It was Haspel who was Rodriguez’s handpicked warden of the first secret prison the CIA created to handle al-Qaeda detainees.

It was Haspel who oversaw the staff, including discredited contract psychologists James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen, the notorious pair who came up with the torture techniques and who actually carried out torture on prisoners.

It was Haspel who videotaped the torture of Abu Zubaydah. And it was Haspel who carried out her master’s instructions to destroy the tapes, despite being specifically told by the White House Counsel to preserve them.

I would call that “obstruction of justice” and “destroying evidence.” And the last time I checked, those were felonies.”

At this point, it is rather safe to assess that Haspel faces “a rocky confirmation hearing in the Senate and a narrow political path to secure the job.”

If Democrats elect to oppose Haspel as a bloc in committee or the full Senate, Republicans will need all the votes they can get in order to confirm her.

The Senate intelligence committee is expected to hold confirmation hearings on Haspel at the end of April.

TIMELINE

Gina Haspel is single and she has no presence on social media. Foreign language: French

1956 October 1 — Gina Haspel was born in Ashland, Kentucky, the oldest of five children. Her father served in the Air Force, having joined at 17, and she grew up on military bases overseas.

— After graduating from high school in England, Gina Haspel returned home to attend the University of Kentucky, where she studied languages and majored in journalism.

—  she moved to Louisville her senior year for an internship and graduated with honors from the University of Louisville.

— After college, Gina Haspel worked as a contractor with the 10th Special Forces Group at Ft. Devens in Massachusetts. She ran the library and foreign language lab.

1985 — She joins the CIA

About 1988 —  First overseas assignment as a case officer in  Addis Abeba (Ethiopia), then run by Waldimir Skotzko.

1990 — (August) Second Secretary at the US Embassy in Ankara, Turkey

1999 — Executive assistant to James Pavitt, Director of Clandestine Operations (DDO)

2001 — (In the wake of 9/11) Haspel joins the Counter-Terrorism Center at the request of José Rodriguez

2002 — Between October and December 2002, Haspel was assigned to oversee a secret CIA prison in Thailand, code-named Cat’s Eye, that housed persons suspected of involvement in Al-Qaeda. The prison was part of the U.S. government’s extraordinary rendition program after the September 11 attacks, and used enhanced interrogation techniques such as waterboarding that are considered by many to be torture. According to a former senior CIA official, Haspel arrived as Station Chief after the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, but was chief during the waterboarding of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri.

2003-2005(?) — Haspel heads the CIA «Renditions and Interrogations Group» inside the Counter-Terrorism Center

2005 — Haspel was the chief of staff to Jose Rodriguez, Director of the National Clandestine Service. In his memoir, Rodriguez wrote that Haspel had drafted a cable in 2005 ordering the destruction of dozens of videotapes made at the black site in Thailand in response to mounting public scrutiny of the program. (“Haspel was the chief of staff when I (Robert Richer is a former associate deputy director of operations for the CIA) was the No. 2 person in the agency’s clandestine service in 2004 and 2005.”)

2009-2011 — Haspel serves as the CIA’s Station Chief in London. Prestigious position traditionally held by very senior CIA officers. (Vaughn Bishop de 2007 à 2009, and later by Timothy Buch until Haspel.)

2011 – 2013 — Haspel serves as the CIA’s Station Chief in New York

2013 — (February 28, 2013 – May 7, 2013) John Brennan, then the director of Central Intelligence, named Haspel as acting Director of the National Clandestine Service, which carries out covert operations around the globe. However, she was not appointed to the position permanently due to criticism about her involvement in the Rendition, Detention and Interrogation program. Her permanent appointment was opposed by Dianne Feinstein and others in the Senate. Francis Archibald — Former COS in Malaysia and Pakistan — is picked to run the NCS.

2013 – 2017 — Haspel is back in London

2017 February 8 — Haspel is named Deputy Director of CIA

2018 March 13 — Gina Haspel named by Trump to be CIA director, replacing Mike Pompeo, who will replace Tillerson at State

Media goes after Trump’s CIA pick Gina Haspel

“Enhanced interrogation” architect James Mitchell discusses the controversy surrounding President Trump’s nomination for CIA director, Gina Haspel.

Donald Trump CIA Pick Busted For Destroying Secret Torture Tapes | The Beat With Ari Melber | MSNBC 

Trump’s pick to run the CIA, Gina Haspel, helped destroy “torture tapes” and ran a Bush-era “black site”.

Ari Melber fact checks Trump’s support for torture with this new nomination.

REFERENCES

Coats: Haspel’s CIA record will be declassified ‘as much as possible’ — Politico

Get to Know our Deputy Director — CIA Website

Qui est Gina Haspel, la nouvelle patronne de la CIA ? — TTU

Feinstein on Haspel Nomination  — Official website

Amnesty International’s position on the nomination of Gina Haspel to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency — Amnesty International

Bipartisan Support for Gina Haspel’s Nomination to be CIA Director From Distinguished National Security Leaders — CIA Official website

Gina Haspel Used To Work For Me. She’s A Great Choice For CIA Director by Robert Baer— NPR

Trump’s pick for new CIA chief dogged by secret prisons — Reuters

Gina Haspel named by Trump to be CIA director, replacing Pompeo, who will replace Tillerson at State — Washington Post

Gina Haspel Selected to be Deputy Director of CIA  — CIA website

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CIA Director Nominee — Haspel’s Record Will Be Declassified…  ‘As Much As Possible’

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