Obama has yet to announce a pick for the new CIA director. This is probably one of the toughest decisions for him to make in the transition. Does Obama allow the CIA to continue its ways or will there be some 'change' in the organization?
The reported frontrunner, John Brennen, withdraw his name. He most likely was pushed to do so after some of Obama's liberal supporters protested that Brennen was a supporter of torture and 'dark side' policies.
Torture is bad enough but when one looks at the history of the CIA it is apparent that torture is fairly minor compared to other crimes the group has and is involved in.
Without going into this history of crimes, here are a few links if you are interested.
Timeline of CIA Atrocities
America's Premier International Terrorist Organization
CIA: 1947 - 1990
The CIA, Contras, Gangs and Crack
Specialist in coups and killing
Afghanistan's Multibillion Dollar Heroin Trade
"One of the "hidden" objectives of the war was precisely to restore the CIA sponsored drug trade to its historical levels and exert direct control over the drug routes."
A Brief History of CIA Involvement in Drug Trafficking
The CIA School of Assassination at Fort Bragg
The tales of crimes, corruption, coups, assassinations, renditions, drug trafficking, media manipulators, creators of Al-Qaeda, bin Laden and the 'War on Terror' etc. make for a very long read. Let's just say that the CIA is much more than an intelligence service. It is an above the law syndicate. An 'anything goes' service.
It's easy to see why the director's choice is very problematic.
How much can the CIA be shaken up? Obama and the new director need to give an appearence of reform but it's unlikely there will be anything more than 'window dressing.'
Unless there are some very deep and rogue operatives still at work in the CIA, the director has to know basically everything that will be going on. That means both the legal and illegal activities.
Working with intelligence services across the world is a necessity. Especially important is how they interact with Israel and the Mossad. Probably not much trust in that relationship but that's just part of being in bed with criminals and killers.
Obama needs someone in place that will cover the old 'plausible deniability' doctrine. That substantially is keeping it all secret and covered up until Obama is long gone from office.
How Obama leaves office, walking or in a box, will somewhat depend on Obama's relationship with the CIA.
I'm sure he remembers all about the last president who was prepared to challenge and possibly dismantle the organization. There is a reputed quote by President Kennedy that he wanted to "splinter the CIA into a thousand pieces and scatter it into the winds."
We'll watch closely as Obama finally names his CIA director. The background and history of the nomination will tell us a great deal of the story.
It most likely will not be Valerie Plame.