Obama to nominate top adviser John Brennan to lead CIA

WASHINGTON — President Obama plans to nominate top counter-terrorism adviser John Brennan to lead the CIA, a senior administration official said today.

Brennan, a 25-year veteran of the agency, would take the helm of the CIA in the wake of the resignation of former Army Gen. David Petraeus.

The White House is kicking off its effort to promote Brennan Monday morning, as the president also prepares to launch his formal pitch for former Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel to become secretary of Defense.

If confirmed, the two men would complete the core of Obama’s national security team in his second term. They would join Democratic Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, whom Obama has named to succeed Hillary Rodham Clinton as secretary of State.

Hagel and Brennan promise to be controversial choices. Hagel has drawn fire for criticizing talk of a military strike by the U.S. or Israel against Iran and for opposing some sanctions against Iran.

Shortly after Obama was first elected, Brennan asked the president to take him out of contention for the CIA position. At the time, liberal critics said that Brennan, who had served in a senior intelligence position under President George W. Bush, was too closely tied to that administration’s use of brutal interrogation techniques that critics said were torture. Brennan strongly denied that he had ever supported those policies.

The White House plans to cite Brennan’s experience in the agency in making the case for his confirmation. Brennan served in the field, including a stint as station chief in Saudi Arabia, and at headquarters of the CIA, where he was deputy executive director.

He is also credited for building the National Counter-terrorism Center to improve inter-agency coordination in the wake of 9/11.

Brennan claims no party affiliation and has held senior positions in Democratic and Republican administrations, the senior official said.

More in Local News

Shock from WSU suicide ripples through Snohomish County

Roughly 1 in 10 seniors, sophomores and 8th-graders said they had attempted to take their own lives.

New leaders coming to county, state political parties

Hillary Moralez of Bothell takes over as chair for the Snohomish County Democratic Party.

Mom and brother turn in suspect in Stanwood robberies

The man is suspected of robbing the same gas station twice, and apologizing to the clerk afterward.

$1,000 reward for info on who killed an eagle near Snohomish

After being shot, the raptor was treated at the Sarvey Wildlife Center but died overnight.

Possible bobcat sighting keeps Snohomish students inside

The creature was spotted on the campus of Valley View Middle School around noon.

Derrick “Wiz” Crawford, 22, is a suspect in the homicide of his roommate. (Edmonds Police Department)
Roommate suspected in Edmonds killing found hiding in closet

Police had been searching for him for 10 days before locating him at a house in Everett.

Stabbing in Everett follows dispute between brothers-in-law

The victim, 54, was hospitalized. The suspect, 29, had not been apprehended Thursday.

Camano Island man gets 18 years for role in drug ring

He was convicted of helping lead a drug distribution network in four Washington counties.

Lake Stevens man missing since beginning of January

Jason Michael Knox White hasn’t used his credit card or withdrawn money from his bank since then.

Most Read