Trump CIA pick Gina Haspel heads for confirmation amid resistance

Gina Haspel, CIA pick, easily clears intel committee

"She has acted morally, ethically, and legally, over a distinguished 30-year career and is the right person to lead the Agency into an uncertain and challenging future", he said.

Among Democrats supporting Haspel were several up for re-election this fall in states where Trump is popular, including Sen.

Of those six Democrats, four have said they are voting for Haspel, Sen. The Democrats have already supplied a sufficient number of "yes" votes to assure Haspel's confirmation by the full Senate as early as this week, just as they ensured the confirmation of Pompeo. She also played a key role in efforts to destroy videotapes of the torture of al-Nashiri and another detainee ― efforts that began in 2002 and ended with the videos' destruction in 2005, just as Congress moved to conduct an inquiry into that Central Intelligence Agency program.

"I believe she is someone who can and will stand up to the President if ordered to do something illegal or immoral - like a return to torture", Warner said in explaining his decision to vote for her.

The panel voted 10-5 behind closed doors to back Haspel, which was expected after two of its seven Democrats, including Vice Chairman Mark Warner, said they would join the committee's eight Republicans in backing Haspel.

"With the benefit of almost 20 years of hindsight, and from your perspective as the nominee to be Director of the CIA, do you believe the Agency's use of "enhanced interrogation techniques" was consistent with American values? I'm pleased to see the Committee favorably report her nomination to the full Senate, and I look forward to her swift confirmation", he said.

House members don't have a vote on confirmations, but Representative Jim Banks (R-3rd) praises Haspel's experience as an agency veteran, and says he doesn't share concerns about her part in the "extraordinary rendition" program.

Most in the Democratic caucus are expected to vote against Haspel - with Sen. Ms. Haspel has been accused, not by one or two individuals, but by more than 100 military generals and admirals, of directly overseeing torture, and subsequently covering it up and destroying evidence. She told Warner: "While I won't condemn those that made these hard calls, and I have noted the valuable intelligence collected, the program ultimately did damage to our officers and our standing in the world". John McCain, whose long-distance rejection of Haspel as he battles brain cancer at home hit a political nerve. Haspel supervised one of those detention sites in Thailand, but details of her work there have not been declassified.

"There is a legal and moral responsibility that comes with operating in secrecy", Sen.

Haspel also drafted a cable ordering the destruction of videotapes depicting harsh interrogation of terror suspects after 9/11, although her boss actually sent the order.

Haspel had already picked up Democratic support and appears on a path to confirmation. The first woman, and the first career intelligence professional since Director William Casey to lead the CIA, Haspel promises to be an excellent, apolitical and talented leader.

In an interview, Gerald Staberock, secretary general of the World Organization Against Torture (OMCT), said Haspel's expected confirmation is a "terrible message by the U.S. that torture is not a crime".

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