Former Air Force General Michael Hayden has received President Bush’s nomination as head of the CIA. Hayden is going to be a controversial choice for the position, even among Republicans. There’s a lot of nervousness about the nomination of a general to head up a civilian operation.
I’m not sure Hayden’s the right choice for that same reason. He is most likely qualified, but he’s going to face a huge amount of fire, and may not get through confirmation. The CIA’s CYA culture and constant leaking needs to be fixed, and President Bush needs to find a civilian who can do that without ruffling too many feathers in Langley – at least at the beginning. I’m not sure who that person might be, but it is crucial that the CIA not continue to act as though it were an unelected branch of government and started concentrating on providing relevant, accurate, and timely information to policymakers. if the CIA were half as good at intelligence as it is at leaking, we wouldn’t be having the problems we’re having.