US president Joe Biden’s relies on Avril Haines on intelligence issues. Haines is first confirmed Cabinet member, the first woman responsible from intelligence and she has a Jewish background. She became Director of National Intelligence (DNI).
The US Senate confirmed Avril Haines to be the first woman to lead the intelligence community, making her President Joe Biden’s first Cabinet member. The job oversees 18 intelligence agencies and units, including the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the National Security Agency (NSA), which employ hundreds of thousands of federal workers and contractors.
Haines is the daughter of a Jewish mother and non-Jewish father. She is the first Jewish director of national intelligence. This position was established in 2005.
The Senate voted 84-10 to confirm Ms Haines, with only Republicans opposing her nomination.
Haines, has served as deputy director of the CIA and as a deputy national security adviser.
The decision also means that the Biden administration will declassify an intelligence report into the murder by the Saudi government of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Khashoggi, a Washington Post journalist and US resident who wrote critical columns about the Saudi crown prince, was murdered by Saudi agents inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey in October 2018.
While media reports have said that the US intelligence community determined with a medium to a high degree of confidence that Prince Mohammed ordered the killing, that assessment has never officially been stated. The crown prince has denied he ordered the murder.
During Haines’s confirmation hearing on Tuesday, the Oregon senator Ron Wyden said that, if confirmed as the new DNI, she would have the opportunity to “immediately” turn the page on the “excessive secrecy” and “lawlessness” of the Trump administration, and submit an unclassified report on “who was responsible” for Khashoggi’s murder, as required under a February 2020 law that the Trump administration in effect blocked.
Asked whether she would release the report, Haines replied: “Yes, senator, absolutely. We will follow the law.”
In a statement, Wyden praised the move, saying it was “refreshing to hear a straightforward commitment to follow the law” from Haines