Trump Plans to Do More Than Just Criticize CIA

He wants to restructure US intelligence agencies, sources say
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 5, 2017 1:34 AM CST
In this Dec. 15, 2016, file photo, President-elect Donald Trump speaks during a rally in Hershey, Pa.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

(Newser) – Donald Trump plans to do more than just criticize US intelligence agencies—he plans to restructure the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Central Intelligence Agency, sources tell the Wall Street Journal. "The view from the Trump team is the intelligence world has become completely politicized," says one source close to the Trump team. "They all need to be slimmed down." Trump, who has slammed the assessment by US intelligence agencies that Russia is to blame for hacks targeting the US presidential election, would, for example, decrease staff at CIA headquarters in Virginia in favor of putting more agents in posts around the globe, sources say.

As for the ODNI, which was created in 2004 to increase cooperation between intelligence agencies post-9/11, Trump wants to limit its power because he believes it actually interferes with the 16 US intelligence agencies, sources tell CNN. Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, quickly hit back at the reports: Shrinking the ODNI would "diminish its effectiveness and reverse many of the important gains we had made since 9/11," he said in a statement Wednesday night. "Moreover, to propose changing the CIA's operational structure because of loose allegations of politicization—claims based on nothing more than the agency's willingness to contradict the President-elect's preferred version of events—would be a mistake of the highest order." Trump has an intelligence briefing on Russian hacking Friday. (Read more Donald Trump stories.)

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