facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Panetta to be nominated as CIA head

Jan. 5, 2009 at 3:40 PM   |   Comments

| License Photo
WASHINGTON, Jan. 5 (UPI) -- Leon Panetta, President Bill Clinton's chief of staff, may be U.S. President-elect Barack Obama's nominee to head the CIA, Democratic officials said Monday.

Panetta, a former California congressman, enjoys a reputation as an astute budget manager but has little hands-on intelligence experience, The New York Times reported.

If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Panetta would take over a U.S. spy agency Obama criticized during his campaign for using interrogation methods decried as torture.

John M. Deutch, CIA director under Clinton and now a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, called Panetta and retired Adm. Dennis Blair, Obama's apparent choice for National Intelligence director, an "absolutely brilliant team." Panetta is a "talented and experienced manager of government and a widely respected person with Congress," Deutch told the Times.

As CIA director, Panetta would report to Blair. Neither choice was announced Monday.

Besides his managerial skills, Obama's officials noted Panetta enjoyed bipartisan support on Capitol Hill, has significant foreign policy experience and was appointed by President George Bush on the Iraq Study Group, the bipartisan panel that examined the war and made U.S. policy recommendations.

"He will bring a wealth of knowledge of the government to the CIA post and an outside perspective that I think might be helpful at this juncture in the CIA's history," said Lee Hamilton, a former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and a co-chairman of the Iraq Study Group.

© 2009 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Most Popular
1
Merkel urges Putin to withdraw Russian troops from Ukraine Merkel urges Putin to withdraw Russian troops from Ukraine
2
Lindsey Graham fears ISIS will come kill us all, in a not at all hysterical way Lindsey Graham fears ISIS will come kill us all, in a not at all hysterical way
3
Rush Limbaugh: Women actually are consenting when they say 'no' Rush Limbaugh: Women actually are consenting when they say 'no'
4
American man detained by South Korean marines American man detained by South Korean marines
5
Venezuela's Socialist Party unveils new prayer 'Our Chavez who art in heaven' Venezuela's Socialist Party unveils new prayer 'Our Chavez who art in heaven'
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback