Mike McConnell

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Ex-Spy Chief: Get Ready for 'Cyber 9/11'

Mike McConnell says we've had our warning

(Newser) - First, it was defense secretary Leon Panetta warning of a " cyber Pearl Harbor ." Now, the former director of national intelligence says it's time to prepare for "the cyber equivalent of the World Trade Center attack," the Financial Times reports. Recent attacks on big banks like... More »

'Google-like' System to Link US Intelligence Agencies

Overhaul includes databases, email

(Newser) - The computer databases of the 16 US intelligence agencies soon will be linked, the Wall Street Journal reports. The system comes nearly 5 years after the spy agencies got heat for failing to "connect the dots" before the Sept. 11 attacks. Analysts will be able to search through secret... More »

White House Order Ramps Up Spy Boss Powers

Historic overhaul signed by prez

(Newser) - A sweeping overhaul of spy powers will give the director of national intelligence broad new authority, reports the Wall Street Journal. Mike McConnell will be able to command information-sharing between agencies, hire and fire agency heads, and make major purchase decisions under a new executive order signed yesterday by President... More »

As Congress Caves on FISA, Coalition Urges Fighting Back

'Limitless erosion of core constitutional liberties' abhorrent, Greenwald writes

(Newser) - With a vote set for tomorrow on a new domestic surveillance bill that grants immunity to telecoms involved in warrantless wiretapping of US citizens, Glenn Greenwald urges Salon readers to donate to a "coalition devoted to the preservation of basic constitutional protections and the rule of law." The... More »

New Iraq NIE Likely to Remain Secret

Officials keen to keep report classified after Iran estimate flap

(Newser) - Intelligence officials may keep the results of a new assessment on Iraq confidential when it's completed next month, the Washington Post reports. The new National Intelligence Estimate will be given to Congress, but intelligence officials are gunshy about making it public because of the brouhaha that erupted when they released... More »

Afghanistan Is Out of Control: Intel Chief

Karzai controls just 30% of country, Taliban 10%, tribal leaders the rest

(Newser) - The 6-year NATO campaign in Afghanistan is failing, the US intelligence chief told the Senate Armed Services Committee this week. Mike McConnell said Harmid Karzai’s US-backed government controls only about 30% of the country, with the Taliban holding another 10%, and the rest under tribal rule. Security, meanwhile, is... More »

Stalling Spy Bill Hurts Intel, Admin Asserts

Letter pushes House Dems to pass new wiretapping rules

(Newser) - As House Dems refuse to pass the Senate’s wiretapping bill, the administration is heaping more pressure on them to change their minds, reports Muckraker. A letter to the House intelligence committee from top administration officials claims that the failure to pass the bill is causing “lost intelligence information”... More »

Musharraf Nixes Greater CIA Role in Pakistan

In secret meetings, US spy chiefs sought larger combat role

(Newser) - Washington's top two intelligence officials made a secret trip to Pakistan this month "to convince Musharraf that time is ticking," the New York Times reports, quoting senior officials. DNI director Mike McConnell and CIA chief Michael Hayden sought greater latitude for the CIA to operate in Pakistan's near-lawless... More »

Waterboarding Is Torture: US Intelligence Chief

Can't imagine 'how painful,' says McConnell

(Newser) - US Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell said it "would be torture" if he were subjected to the controversial interrogation technique of waterboarding. "If I had water draining into my nose, God, I just can't imagine how painful!" McConnell told the New Yorker. "For me, it... More »

NSA Deepens Tense Alliance with Telecoms

Both sides await word on possible immunity for carriers

(Newser) - The telecom industry will be all ears to proceedings beginning tomorrow on Capitol Hill, where lawmakers will decide if companies helping the government’s warrantless surveillance program should receive immunity. President Bush personally lobbied Congress to further the NSA’s tenuous alliance with the industry, whose members are increasingly resistant... More »

Senate Brokers Truce With Bush on Domestic Spying

Includes immunity for phone companies

(Newser) - Senate Democrats and Republicans have brokered a deal on legislation regarding the White House domestic spying and wiretapping program—including a highly controversial grant of immunity to telecommunication companies that co-operated with warrantless wiretaps. The deal marks a victory for the White House because Democrats had to kill a House... More »

DNI Exposes Broader Spying

Gonzales still under fire for perjury

(Newser) - The executive branch has had more authority to spy on citizens than yet reported, the Washington Post revealed today. Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell explained yesterday that the controversial NSA warrantless wiretapping and data mining program was only one element in a broader series of secret surveillance activities issued... More »

12 Stories