TribLIVE

| USWorld

 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

NSA, Cyber Command leadership split mulled

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

By The Washington Post
Saturday, Nov. 30, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
 

WASHINGTON — Key senior Obama administration officials have advocated splitting the leadership of the nation's largest spy agency from that of the military's cyberwarfare command as a final White House decision nears, according to individuals briefed on the discussions.

At a White House meeting of senior national security officials last week, James Clapper, director of National Intelligence, said he was in favor of ending the policy of having one official in charge of both the National Security Agency and U.S. Cyber Command, said the individuals, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Officials appear inclined to install a civilian as director of the NSA for the first time in the agency's 61-year history. Among those said to be potential successors to the director, Gen. Keith Alexander, is his deputy, John “Chris” Inglis.

While officials have not made a final decision on either issue, national security adviser Susan Rice is expected to make a formal recommendation to President Obama soon, said the individuals, who were not authorized to speak for attribution.

“Ultimately, the president will make this decision,” White House spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said. “At levels below the president, the interagency is still discussing the way forward. Given that we are still looking at the question of whether the ⅛leadership⅜ would be split, we are not yet considering preferred candidates.”

The question of whether one director should lead the NSA and Cyber Command — an arrangement some say invests too much power in one individual — has existed since Cyber Command started in 2010. But it has intensified since June, when a series of disclosures based on documents from a former NSA contractor, Edward Snowden, sparked controversy over the agency's surveillance programs.

Hayden said Alexander's planned departure next spring made this “a natural point” to look at the question. A decision may be announced within the next few weeks, along with recommendations from separate White House internal and external reviews of surveillance policies.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Nation

  1. Oklahoma court: Ten Commandments monument at Capitol must go
  2. Boy Scouts of America votes to end controversial ban on openly gay leaders
  3. Police try to see if man killed by escort was linked to crimes against women
  4. El Niño helps, harms economies
  5. Lawyers: Immigrant mothers coerced to wear ankle monitors in Texas
  6. National Security Agency to stop looking at old telephone records
  7. House, Senate clash over highway funds before Friday deadline
  8. House backs bill to help vets who’ve suffered sexual assault
  9. ‘Aggressive’ search under way for 2 Florida teens lost on fishing trip
  10. House Benghazi panel says State Department to hand over documents Tuesday
  11. Georgia judge says she did not involuntarily commit Louisiana movie theater gunman Houser