Archive for the ‘Michael McConnell’ Category

Obama to begin receiving intelligence briefings

November 6, 2008

“The world is a much more dangerous place that Barack Obama has ever realized before,” a CIA analyst told Peace and Freedom.  “The the challenges are daunting and the president elect will have a new realization staring today.”

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By NEDRA PICKLER, Associated Press Writer
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CHICAGO – Barack Obama will begin receiving highly classified briefings from top intelligence officials Thursday, as the rush of his campaign gives way to intensive preparations to take over as commander in chief and build a Democratic administration. The briefings typically last 45 minutes to an hour, but Obama’s initial one is expected to be longer.

A U.S. intelligence official speaking on condition of anonymity said Joe Biden, the vice president-elect, also will begin receiving briefings this week.

The president’s daily brief that Obama will receive is mostly written by the Central Intelligence Agency and will include the most critical overnight intelligence for the president. They sometimes dig deeply into a specific topic to give the president an in-depth understanding.
Seal of the Central Intelligence Agency

Obama began his first full day as president-elect with the simple pleasure of having breakfast with his daughters, the type of everyday activity with his family that he often said during the nearly two-year campaign was his greatest sacrifice.

Later in the morning, Obama left the house alone, clad in workout clothes, a ball cap and sunglasses and carrying a newspaper on his lap. He ducked into a friend’s apartment building where he usually uses the gym while in Chicago. About a dozen onlookers expecting his arrival had gathered with cameras and cell phones to get a glimpse of him.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081105/ap_on_el_pr/obama_8

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U.S. foes target Latin America

February 8, 2008

By Sara A. Carter
The Washington Times
February 8, 2008

Iran, Cuba and Venezuela are working together against the U.S. by undermining democracy in Latin America, allowing trafficking of illegal drugs and creating safe havens for extremist groups, intelligence officials said.
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Testifying before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on Tuesday, National Intelligence Director Michael McConnell said that influence from the three countries — led respectively by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez — has spilled into Bolivia, Nicaragua and Ecuador, which “are pursuing agendas that undercut checks and balances” of democratic governments.

Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez salutes during a military ...
 Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez salutes during a military parade to celebrate the 16th anniversary of a failed coup d’etat led by him in 1992, in Valencia, 160 km (99 miles) from Caracas, February 4, 2008.(Ho-Miraflores Palace/Reuters)


“Moreover, each of these governments, to varying degrees, has engaged in sharply anti-U.S. rhetoric, aligned with Venezuela and Cuba — and increasingly Iran — on international issues, and advocated measures that directly clash with U.S. initiatives,” said Mr. McConnell, whose department oversees all 16 U.S. intelligence agencies.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtontimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080208/NATION/169452279/1001
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, center, surrounded by ... 
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, center, surrounded by officials, stands under a research rocket, in Tehran, Iran, Monday, Feb. 4, 2008. Iran launched a research rocket Monday and unveiled its first major space center that will be used to launch research satellites, state-run television reported.(AP Photo/ISNA, Mehdi Ghasemi)

Al Qaeda seen planning another attack on U.S.

February 6, 2008

By Sara A. Carter
The Washington Times 
February 6, 2008

Senior al Qaeda leaders have diverted operatives from Iraq across the globe and are increasing preparations to strike the United States, senior intelligence officials told the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence yesterday. They said the terrorists had plans to attack the White House as recently as 2006.
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“Al Qaeda is improving the last key aspect of its ability to attack the U.S. — the identification, training and positioning of operatives for an attack in the homeland,” said Michael McConnell, director of national intelligence, which oversees all 16 U.S. intelligence agencies.
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Intelligence officials also said they used a controversial interrogation tactic known as “waterboarding”….

Read the rest:
 http://www.washingtontimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080206/NATION/604494540/1001

Related:
Pakistan: Militants declare cease-fire

SecDef Gates, Admiral Mullen Testify Before SASC

U.S. sees Russia, China, OPEC financial threat

February 5, 2008
By Randall Mikkelsen

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States should be worried that Russia, China and OPEC oil-producing countries could use their growing financial clout to advance political goals, the top U.S. spy chief told Congress on Tuesday.

Director of National Intelligence Michael McConnell testifies ... 
Director of National Intelligence Michael McConnell testifies before the Senate (Select) Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington February 1, 2007. Concerns about a weaker U.S. dollar could tempt more oil-producing countries to delink their currency pegs from the dollar or ask to be paid in other currencies, McConnell said on Tuesday.
(Jim Young/Reuters)

U.S. National Director of Intelligence Michael McConnell voiced the concern to Congress in an annual assessment of potential threats, in which economic matters joined terrorism, nuclear proliferation and computer-network vulnerabilities as top security issues.McConnell told the Senate Intelligence Committee in prepared testimony that the global threat of terrorism remained, but that al Qaeda had suffered setbacks and its international reputation was diminishing.

Among other top worries, Iran….Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080205/
pl_nm/security_usa_threats_dc_1