United States Air Force General Michael Hayden has been nominated as the new director of the CIA.
Air Force General Michael Hayden
"The men and women of the CIA will have a strong leader to support them," said U.S. President George W. Bush in a press conference today.
"This is simply too important to not get absolutely right," said Hayden.
The nomination is not uncontroversial. Republican and Democratic critics claims Michael Hayden's military background is not preferable as the CIA is a civil institution. Saxby Chambliss calls it a "major problem" due to the intelligence budget which is already controlled by the Pentagon up to and/or more than 80 percent. Peter Hoekstra, Intelligence Committee Chairman, says he would oppose the nomination of General Michael Hayden as "the wrong person, the wrong place at the wrong time".
Hayden was head of the NSA from 1999-2005 and was in charge of the eavesdropping program which allows the U.S. government to monitor e-mail and international telephone calls of suspected terrorists without obtaining a warrent. Last year, he became the deputy for the director of National Intelligence John Negroponte.
Hayden also is currently serving more than 35 years in the U.S. Air Force and from 1980-1982 he served as intelligence chief at Osan Air Base which is located in South Korea.
On Friday, Porter Goss resigned as director of the agency.