Who’s Who In The Cia

The Central Intelligence Agency

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is an independent US Government agency responsible for providing national security intelligence to senior US policymakers. Established in 1947, it is the principal intelligence arm of the United States government. Its primary mission is to collect, analyze, evaluate and disseminate foreign intelligence, and to perform covert action when directed by the President.

Organizational Structure

The CIA is headed by the Director of Central Intelligence (DCI). The DCI’s primary function is to serve as the head of the Intelligence Community and to oversee the coordination and integration of all intelligence activities across all the Intelligence Community organizations. He or she is appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate and reports to the President, the National Security Council, and the Homeland Security Council.
The DCI is supported by two Deputy Directors, each of whom is responsible for a division of the agency: one oversees analysis and collection, while the other oversees personnel, plans and budget. The Director also heads four main divisions—the National Clandestine Service (NCS), the Directorate of Intelligence (DI), the Directorate of Science, and Technology (DS&T), and the Directorate of Support (DS).
The National Clandestine Service is responsible for all clandestine operations, such as collecting human intelligence from informants and spies, carrying out covert action operations and special activities, and managing the intelligence operations of other countries. The Directorate of Intelligence (DI) is responsible for all-source intelligence analysis, including collection, collation, evaluation and dissemination of intelligence to policymakers. The Directorate of Science and Technology (DS&T) is responsible for developing and applying advanced technology for intelligence operations and analysis. The Directorate of Support (DS) provides operational, technical and logistical support to all of the agency’s programs, personnel and activities.

CIA Oversight and Accountability

The CIA is an organization that has a significant degree of autonomy, and is largely immune from public and Congressional oversight. However, the agency is subject to a number of legal restrictions, most notably the National Security Act of 1947, which requires CIA to report to Congress and the President on a semi-annual basis. Additionally, the Central Intelligence Agency Act of 1949 requires the agency to submit its budget to Congress, and the National Security Council Intelligence Directives, which are issued by the President, provide guidance and oversight for the agency’s operations and activities.
The CIA is also subject to the oversight of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, which are responsible for overseeing the CIA’s operations and activities. These committees are also responsible for setting the agency’s budget, and for conducting investigations into alleged misconduct or malfeasance.

CIA Leadership

The current Director of Central Intelligence is John O. Brennan, who was appointed by President Barack Obama in 2013. Brennan has previously served in the CIA in various roles, including Deputy Executive Director and Chief of Staff to the Director, Deputy National Security Advisor for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, and Deputy Director of the National Counterterrorism Center.
William J. Burns, Deputy Secretary of State, is the current Deputy Director of Central Intelligence. He is also the most senior career official at the agency, and was nominated by President Obama in 2014.

CIA Missions

The CIA is primarily tasked with two main mission objectives: to collect foreign intelligence and to carry out covert operations.
The first mission of the CIA is the collection of intelligence, the primary purpose of which is to inform and advise policymakers in the US government. The CIA is able to collect intelligence from a variety of sources, including HUMINT (human intelligence), SIGINT (signals intelligence), imagery intelligence, open-source information, and other sources. This intelligence is then analyzed and disseminated to the relevant policymakers or organizations.
The second mission of the CIA is to carry out covert operations, which are activities conducted when authorized by the President and not made public. These activities are generally restricted to foreign countries and involve activities such as subversion, sabotage, political influence, assassination, and paramilitary operations.

CIA Controversies

The Central Intelligence Agency has been the subject of much scrutiny and criticism over the years, particularly due to its involvement in activities such as torture and extraordinary rendition, and its involvement in coups and regime changes in other countries. Additionally, the CIA has come under criticism for its failure to accurately predict events such as 9/11 and the fall of the Soviet Union.
In recent years, the CIA has also been the subject of numerous reports of illegality and overreach, such as its alleged surveillance of Senate staff. It has also been accused of widespread monitoring of domestic communications and of involving itself in domestic politics.

Public Support for the CIA

Despite these controversies, the CIA remains popular among the American public. Recent polls suggest that a majority of Americans continue to view the CIA in a positive light, with two-thirds expressing approval of the agency’s performance. A majority also approves of the agency’s efforts in combating terrorism and in making the country safer.

Conclusion of Authority

The Central Intelligence Agency has a long and storied history, and is an essential part of the US Intelligence Community. The CIA is responsible for collecting, analyzing, and disseminating foreign intelligence, and for carrying out covert operations when directed by the President. It is also subject to a number of legal restrictions, and is subject to oversight from Congress and from the President.
Despite its controversies, the CIA remains popular among the American public, and its role in protecting US interests and national security is widely appreciated. As the agency continues to evolve and adapt to changing threats and challenges, it is likely that the CIA will remain a key player in the US Intelligence Community for years to come.


Research conducted by the CIA ranges from research into weaponry and technology to political and intelligence analysis. This research is used to inform and advise policymakers, and to develop and deploy new tools, techniques and tactics to counter threats to national security.
The agency works with other government agencies and private contractors to identify and analyze the threats facing the US, and to develop and deploy the necessary tools and techniques to address these threats. This research is conducted both domestically and abroad, in cooperation with foreign governments and other international actors.
Additionally, the CIA engages in scientific, economic, and social research, in order to better understand the international environment and the forces at play in it. The agency also produces publications, such as the History of the CIA, to provide additional insight into the agency and its activities.

Intelligence Gathering

Intelligence gathering is one of the primary functions of the Central Intelligence Agency. The agency is responsible for collecting and analyzing information about US adversaries, and for providing the necessary intelligence to US policymakers.
The CIA collects intelligence from a variety of sources, including human intelligence (HUMINT) sources, signals intelligence (SIGINT) sources, open-source intelligence (OSINT) sources, and other sources. This intelligence is then analyzed and disseminated to the relevant policymakers or organizations, who use it to make informed decisions.
The agency also employs a number of intelligence gathering techniques in order to acquire the necessary intelligence. These techniques include spies, wiretapping, electronic surveillance, undercover operations, and the use of sophisticated surveillance equipment.

Covert Actions

The CIA is also responsible for carrying out covert operations when directed by the President. These covert operations are generally restricted to foreign countries, and involve actions such as subversion, sabotage, political influence, assassination, and paramilitary operations.
The agency also engages in activities such as propaganda operations and disinformation campaigns, in order to influence public opinion on foreign issues. Additionally, the CIA has been involved in several operations to overthrow, or attempt to overthrow, foreign governments.
These covert operations are often highly controversial, and have been criticized by governments and groups within the US, as well as by foreign governments and international organizations. Nevertheless, covert operations remain an important tool for US foreign policy, and the CIA is likely to continue to engage in such operations in the future.

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Rosemary Harrold is an accomplished writer and researcher who is both passionate and knowledgeable about the world of secret services. She gained an MSc in International Relations in 2017 and has since built on her expertise with numerous publications on intelligence agencies, their practices, and recent developments. Rosemary has been writing about IBM, CIA and FBI activities since then, as well as providing in-depth analysis on intelligence-related topics.

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