Negroponte Will Head National Intelligence
The United States’ first national intelligence director will be ambassador to Iraq John Negroponte.
WASHINGTON - President Bush named John Negroponte, the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, as the government’s first national intelligence director Thursday, turning to a veteran diplomat to revive a spy community besieged by criticism after the Sept. 11 attacks.
Ending a nine-week search, Bush chose Negroponte, who has been in Iraq for less than a year, for the difficult job of implementing the most sweeping intelligence overhaul in 50 years.
Negroponte, 65, is tasked with bringing together 15 highly competitive spy agencies and learning to work with the combative Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, the brand new CIA Director Porter Goss and other intelligence leaders. He’ll oversee a covert intelligence budget estimated at $40 billion.
Negroponte, a former ambassador to the United Nations and to a number of countries, called the job his “most challenging assignment” in more than 40 years of government work.
Indeed it will be.
In March 2003, we applauded Mr. Negroponte for doing the right thing in the UN Security Council after an insane rant from a Saddam crony: LGF Kudos to Negroponte.