It’s official. Powell has stepped down from his position as Secretary of State and National Security Advisor Condi Rice has been chosen by the President to replace him. Sounds like the administration is going in for a bit of an overhaul:
Combined with the resignations earlier this month of Commerce Secretary Don Evans and Attorney General John Ashcroft, six of Bush’s 15 Cabinet members will not be part of the president’s second term, which begins with his inauguration Jan. 20. An administration that experienced few changes over the last four years suddenly hit a high-water mark for overhaul.
There are some shake ups as well going on within the CIA under new director Porter Goss:
The head of the Central Intelligence Agency’s clandestine service resigned today, along with his deputy, becoming the highest-level casualties of an effort by Porter J. Goss to overhaul the agency’s spying operations.
Stephen R. Kappes, the deputy director for operations, and Michael Sulick, the associate deputy director, submitted their resignations at a morning staff meeting after days of clashes with advisers to Mr. Goss, the new director of central intelligence, intelligence officials said.
Mr. Kappes and Mr. Sulick had been highly regarded within the C.I.A., and their departures suggest that Mr. Goss is confident of having a mandate from the White House to make sweeping changes at the agency, despite loud protests from former intelligence officials. The resignations of other senior officials within the operations directorate are expected to follow, according to former intelligence officials.
Tensions between the C.I.A.’s new leadership and senior career officials remain extraordinarily high, and similar divisions emerged today between senior members of Congress about whether Mr. Goss was going too far. Representative Jane Harman, the top Democrat on the House intelligence committee, warned of an “implosion” at the C.I.A, while Senator John McCain, the Arizona Republican, said he believed that Mr. Goss should continue to do “whatever is necessary” to clean house at the agency.
Looking forward to seeing what these new changes will bring – and how our friends on the left will react.