Petraeus’ successor as CIA director
In an earlier posting I discussed the militarization of the CIA and the expansion of its mission to diplomatic matters, both of which I am uncomfortable with. Although John Brennan, the president’s choice for new director of the CIA and currently the president’s chief counterintelligence advisor, is not a military officer, his experience for many years at the “Company” has involved military solutions (most recently drone strikes) to our counterterrorism campaigns.
I am proud of our military forces; I am proud of my military service during the Korean War era. I understand why our country has moved toward military solutions to the many complicated problems we face in the world today. Don’t we have almost 50% of the military forces in the world today? Aren’t we the largest manufacturer of military products in the world? Isn’t it easier in the context of foreign relations to shot an opponent than to talk with them? President Eisenhower warned us of the military/industrial complex in the 50s. But my point is that the president needs an independent collector of intelligence information and a strong State Department to assist him in properly utilizing our military forces.
I am glad that members of the Congress and Senate (both sides of the aisle) are raising these questions concerning Mr. Brennan, a fine career employee of the CIA. To understand the strengths and weakness of the military, it’s helpful to have served in it. Too bad so many elected officials (the president included) haven’t had that opportunity. It would provide them with useful insights into that institution.