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James Clapper Appears Before Senate Intel Committee

Photo: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst

Yesterday, James Clapper, tapped to be the next Director of National Intelligence, appeared before the Senate Selected Committee on Intelligence where he appeared to receive broad bi-partisan approval.

Tapped in June for the position by President Barack Obama, Clapper has 46 years of intelligence experience.

“When President Obama asked me to lead this organization he said he wanted someone who could build the Intelligence Community into an integrated team … [to] be the leader of our Intelligence Community; and be someone who would tell policy makers what they needed to know,” Clapper said.

During the hearing, Clapper was asked to respond to the recent allegations made by the Washington Post regarding the supposed redundancy of the Intelligence Community.

“I think, too often, people assume that the Intelligence Community is equally adept at divining both secrets and mysteries … but we are not,” Clapper said. “Normally, the best that intelligence can do is to reduce uncertainty for decision-makers.”

The DNI is responsible for increasing cooperation and collaboration among the various agencies responsible for intelligence collection, analysis and dissemination.

“The DNI can and must foster collaboration and cooperation of the Intelligence Community,” Clapper said. “We must view it as an enterprise of complementary capabilities that must be synchronized.”

If confirmed, Clapper will be the fourth DNI since the formation of the position. The DNI oversees 16 intelligence agencies with a budget of approximately $75 billion.

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