Trump administration allegedly considering plan to privatize CIA operations

Trump CIAThe United States Central Intelligence Agency and the White House are considering several proposals to hire private companies to carry out covert operations abroad, according to a report. BuzzFeed News said on Thursday that the proposals were communicated to the White House in the summer. The news site, which described the proposed plans as “highly unusual”, quoted “three sources who have been briefed on or have direct knowledge of the proposals”. The sources told BuzzFeed that, if approved, the plans would include the establishment of large intelligence networks in so-called “denied areas” —namely foreign environments deemed hostile. The networks would recruit and handle local agents, carry out psychological operations, capture terrorism suspects and rendition them to the US or third countries. “Islamic extremism” is mentioned as the primary target of the proposals.

According to BuzzFeed, one of the proposals involves Amyntor Group, a private company headquartered in the remote town of Whitefish, in northwestern Montana. The company is staffed by former members of the US Intelligence Community who have security clearances. It specializes in intelligence training and risk assessment. But it also collects and analyzes intelligence and provides counterintelligence services for government agencies in America and what it calls “friendly foreign governments” abroad. The company has reportedly been holding discussions with senior officials in the administration of President Donald Trump in recent weeks, according to two of BuzzFeed’s sources. The same sources say that the move toward privatization of some intelligence operations is being led by a feeling in the Trump administration that the CIA has a negative view of the White House. They claim that the CIA is not prepared to go along with the Trump administration’s efforts to make the agency’s operations more aggressive and, in the words of its new director, Mike Pompeo, “much more vicious”. They therefore see privatization as a way to bypass the resistance and skepticism of the CIA’s upper management.

BuzzFeed said it contacted the CIA about the Amyntor Group proposal, but the agency preferred not to comment. A press officer for the National Security Council, which is chaired by President Trump, said that its members were not aware of the privatization proposals. Amyntor Group commented through one of its lawyers, who told BuzzFeed that any contract signed between the company and the US government would be directed and controlled “by the proper government authority”.

Author: Joseph Fitsanakis | Date: 01 December 2017 | Permalink

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6 Responses to Trump administration allegedly considering plan to privatize CIA operations

  1. Pete says:

    Then that rumour of the leveraged takeover of the Clandestine Service of the CIA by RT [1] is only partially true?

    [1] by Trump in consultation with a friendly Putin http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RT_(TV_network)

  2. Lidia Monroe says:

    They have already been outsourcing for a while, but yes it’s probably better to privatise, since the CIA is now a big bureaucracy with leaks and has employees with political motivations that have no national loyalty. But they have to be careful with this too, since there are always pitfalls in anything that is outsourced.

  3. ~ Occams says:

    Oh, goody!

    An already out-of-control entity, OPERATING ILLEGALLY AND UNCONSTITUTIONALLY, will now take part in the Asset Seizure to help fund itself?

    Oh, geee! I can’t wait for this shitshow to begin!

    ~ Occams

  4. Pete says:

    Potential downsides of extensive privatization of the CIA, by Corporation A, include:

    – objectives (profit, revenue and shareholders) that are wider than serving national interests.
    – conflicts of interest where specific CIA intelligence gathering and analysis may run counter to certain Corporation A interests
    – Corporation A’s interests may run counter to operational security interests
    – some multinational (ie. some non-US) ownership of Corporation A would run counter to US interests and CIA security

    Private bureaucracies (eg. General Motors or Partnerships where the partners disagree and even split) may be as inefficient as government bureaucracies that are being replaced.

    Even if the privatizer is not a Corporation (eg. a partnership) commercial regulatory requirements for transparency may run counter to CIA/US Government interests.

  5. localherog2 says:

    A privatized CIA (and god knows what else). What could go wrong? How about smashing the CIA into a billion pieces instead.

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