US Senate confirms Gina Haspel as first ever woman Central Intelligence Agency director

18 May, 2018, 13:58 | Author: Dustin Murphy
  • Kevin Lamarque  Reuters

The US Senate confirmed Gina Haspel on Thursday to be director of the CIA, ending a bruising confirmation fight centred on her oversight of the spy agency's use of torture and other brutal interrogation techniques. He said this week that "it's just hard to get over" the torture issue.

In the end, the Senate approved Haspel with a 54-45 vote.

Haspel, 61, is a native of Kentucky but grew up around the world as the daughter of an Air Force serviceman.

McCain stated, "Gina Haspel is a patriot who loves our country and has devoted her professional life to its service and defense".

Haspel's nomination reopened debate about the CIA's now-defunct program of detaining terror suspects overseas at secret lockups and subjecting them to harsh interrogation techniques.

This, however, did not deter the handful of Democrats from voting to confirm her. More than 100 former US ambassadors who served both Republican and Democratic presidents sent the Senate a letter opposing Haspel, saying that despite her credentials, confirming her would give authoritarian leaders around the world the license to say USA behavior is "no different from ours". "I also believe it is important to hold Gina Haspel's nomination to a similar standard as previous nominees for this position, particularly in regards to responsibility for the CIA's use of torture following the 9/11 attacks", Shaheen proclaimed.


Those speaking out in favor of Haspel's candidacy - like Senate Intelligence Committee Vice Chairman Mark Warner, D-Va. - cited, among other things, the huge support for Haspel from within the CIA. Haspel, who has spent almost all of her 33-year Central Intelligence Agency career in undercover positions, is the first career operations officer to be confirmed since William Colby in 1973.

Republican Senator John McCain, who is undergoing cancer treatment outside of Washington, did not vote. The publication reports that at least five of the six Democrats who voted for her were contacted by the former directors.

Haspel, however, had strong support from Republican President Donald Trump's administration, many current and former intelligence officials and a wide range of lawmakers, including some Democrats. Mark Warner of Virginia and Sen.

During the hearing, Haspel defended her past actions and refused to criticize her colleagues for their tactics at the time.

He said he's convinced that Haspel could and would stand up to Trump, who has voiced support for waterboarding and has said "torture works".

Rights groups had urged senators to block Haspel's nomination. Then several members of the Senate intelligence asked to reconsider this appointment, pointing out that the Genie Haspel was personally involved in unacceptable methods of interrogation, and then contributed to the unauthorized destruction of evidence.

Recommended:

  • Christians encouraged to pray for Muslims during Ramadan

    Christians encouraged to pray for Muslims during Ramadan

    Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar urged for Muslims to practice spiritual reflection as the season of Ramadan begins. In case the new moon is not sighted, then Ramadan in India will begin from May 18, Friday.
    Storm blamed for two deaths, including woman killed in front of child

    Storm blamed for two deaths, including woman killed in front of child

    In Monroe County, Pennsylvania, a 31-year-old man was killed when a tree fell on his vehicle , the county coroner's office said. CT officials said men in New Fairfield and Danbury were killed Tuesday in separate accidents when trees fell on their trucks.
    Malaysia's reformist icon Anwar Ibrahim freed

    Malaysia's reformist icon Anwar Ibrahim freed

    He was first arrested in 1998, while Deputy Prime Minister, after calling for political reform. He has spent the last few months in hospital recovering from a shoulder operation.
  • Chrissy Teigen And John Legend Announce Birth Of Second Baby

    Chrissy Teigen And John Legend Announce Birth Of Second Baby

    They welcomed baby Luna in 2016 . "That's why I stand for a real core group of people around me", she said. When Luna was born fans only had to wait a couple days to get a glance of the new baby and happy mother.
    After ZTE reversal, Democrats accuse Trump of jeopardizing national security

    After ZTE reversal, Democrats accuse Trump of jeopardizing national security

    Reuters reported China is "willing in principle" to import more USA agricultural products in return for easing penalties on ZTE. All three major US stock indexes were down almost 1percent, on track to post their worst daily declines in three weeks.
    WWE Raw: Roman Reigns attacks Jinder Mahal, Ronda Rousey accepts challenge

    WWE Raw: Roman Reigns attacks Jinder Mahal, Ronda Rousey accepts challenge

    At the tapings, it was revealed that Alexa Bliss has been added to the women's Money in the Bank Ladder Match. Since making his return to WWE, Bobby Lashley has actually been rather quiet on the main roster.
  • Behind the Armor: The Golden Knight tells his Knight's tale

    Behind the Armor: The Golden Knight tells his Knight's tale

    It is what one should expect as the Stanley Cup playoffs go deeper: tightly played games between evenly matched opponents. That mistake is unlikely to be repeated. "But I'm also there giving my two cents when they ask for it", said Schunock.
    Solo A Star Wars Story premieres at Cannes 2018

    Solo A Star Wars Story premieres at Cannes 2018

    The bar was set high for Ehrenreich, who steps into Harrison Ford's shoes to play the young Han Solo , but his efforts paid off. And, finally, just because it's wonderful and awesome, here is a photo of Newton standing with Glover, the young Lando himself.

    Israeli rabbi who compared black people to monkeys blesses Ivanka Trump, husband

    He was accompanied by a recorded message from his father-in-law, Donald Trump . The embassy move will take place on the 70th anniversary of Israel's founding.
  • Epic Games release new mode with BIG V-Bucks rewards

    Epic Games release new mode with BIG V-Bucks rewards

    It's essentially a scored mode for the best Battle Royale players, who will be able to earn a lot of V-Bucks for their trouble. Everyone who completes 50 matches, however, will get a unique spray.
    Newspapers review: Arab League's meeting over Gaza focus of dailies

    Newspapers review: Arab League's meeting over Gaza focus of dailies

    Israel accuses Hamas, with whom it has fought three wars since 2008, of seeking to use the demonstrations as cover for violence. Netanyahu said he would not co-operate with an worldwide investigation and argued Israel was merely defending its territory.
    Trump's CIA Pick Passes Crucial First Step

    Trump's CIA Pick Passes Crucial First Step

    Haspel's involvement in torture is deeply troubling, as my friend and colleague, John McCain, so eloquently reminded us". Doug Jones (Ala.) said Tuesday that he will oppose CIA Deputy Director Gina Haspel's nomination to lead the spy agency.


Popular

Whitney Houston's Assistant Shares Details of Her Childhood Abuse in 'Whitney' Documentary
Brown tells the film that drugs had nothing to do with Houston's death, although the coroner said it was a contributing factor. The documentary also revealed chilling details of alleged sexual abuse Houston suffered as a child.

Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline raises intelligence concerns say US
Tory former Cabinet minister John Whittingdale later raised concern about the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline from Russian Federation to Central and Western Europe.

Donald Trump threatens Kim Jong Un ahead of summit
China has been supportive of upcoming talks between Trump and Kim, now planned to take place in Singapore on June 12. However, he warned, the Libyan model "would take place if we don't make a deal, most likely".

WB panchayat polls: Results to be announced today
According to State Election Commisison till 7.30 pm, out of total 48,660 seat, 31,802 gram anchayat seats were contested. There was also no contest for 3,059 of the 9,217 panchayat samiti seats and in 203 of the 825 zilla parishad seats.

Europa League Final 2018: how and where to watch
The game which starts at 6:45 promises to be exciting and we will be bringing you live text commentary so stay with us. Mandanda warned Griezmann isn't Atletico's only threat, however.

North Carolina: Teachers 'Raleigh' for Salary Increase
Educators in several states have walked out of their classrooms over the last few months as a form of protest. She has seen class sizes rise and textbooks fall apart. "Don't cancel a day of school", Irvin said.

IPL 2018: KXIP record season's lowest total batting first against RCB
Shreyas Iyer's men came into the game playing for pride while RCB was battling to keep their campaign alive and needed a victory. Thanks to Narine's 75, Karthik's 50 and Russell's 31 KKR posted 245 runs on board, which is also the highest in this years IPL .

Israeli troops kill 2 and injure hundreds, Palestinians say
The prime minister urged Israel to "show restraint" after soldiers shot dead two more Palestinians near the border on Tuesday. U.S. officials insist the administration remains committed to restarting the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Seattle backs 'head tax' on large companies like Amazon to help homeless
Over 100 Seattle-area businesses , including Alaska Airlines, Expedia and Tableau, have spoken out against the head tax. The so-called "head tax" has been hotly debated in recent weeks at raucous meetings and rallies.

Mercedes-AMG GT S Roadster revealed
Visually, the new AMG GT S Roadster gets the signature AMG radiator grille to the long bonnet and the muscular tail end. It will bridge the performance and price gap between its predecessors, for a vehicle that some may deem just right .