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Trump is right to want changes to the intelligence community

Publisher: The Washington Post
January 11, 2017
Day Pitney Author(s) Steven A. Cash

Steven Cash authored an op-ed, "Trump is right to want changes to the intelligence community," for The Washington Post. The opinion article supports calls to downsize the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, which President-elect Donald Trump has indicated he intends to do. Cash discusses how the DNI position was first established by the 2002 Intelligence Community Leadership Act, and how it grew from "a person" into a "huge enterprise" with a growing host of responsibilities and functions. As a result, "a series of DNIs, starting with John Negroponte and ending with the current occupant, James R. Clapper Jr., struggled mightily against the burdens of the growing bureaucracy," Cash writes. "Tellingly, the phrase 'DNI' (referring to a person) has come to be largely replaced by 'ODNI,' office of the DNI (referring to a huge institution). The DNIs have succeeded; it is the ODNI that has failed. But we cannot rely on the happenstance of having excellent DNIs leading a fundamentally flawed system." Cash suggests going back and reviewing the legislative intent that first created the position might result in "what we needed in the first place: a slim, trim DNI. An admiral to lead a fleet."


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