A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Sen. Rand Paul’s hometown newspaper urges confirmation of KY native Haspel as CIA director

By Tom Latek
Kentucky Today

U.S. Senator Rand Paul’s hometown newspaper is calling on the Bowling Green Republican to back President Trump’s nomination of Kentucky native Gina Haspel as CIA director.

The Bowling Green Daily News published an editorial saying, “Haspel is a very good choice for the CIA director’s position given her long history with the organization. Since her early days in the 1980s working as a field operator for the CIA, nearly every one of her 33 years in the CIA was spent undercover working for many administrations, including Bush and Obama.”

Gina Haspel (CIA photo)

The paper described part of her background: “Haspel was highly involved in the CIA’s controversial program of detaining and interrogating suspected terrorists. In 2002, Haspel oversaw a secret CIA detention facility in Thailand where interrogators waterboarded two al-Qaida suspects – Zayn al-Abidin Muhammed Hussein, better known by the nom de guerre Abu Zubaida, and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri. Abu Zubaida was interrogated before Haspel took charge of the site.

“Again, we would think most of our readers would agree that she was doing not only what she was being ordered to do, but was also looking out for our country’s safety by trying to obtain crucial information to make our country safer.”

The Daily News stated, “Democrats are simply playing to their far-left base. They’d be wise to realize that one of the main reasons we haven’t had another major attack on U.S soil since 9/11 is because of enhanced interrogation techniques. But, sadly, they won’t, because they’d rather tarnish an honorable public servant who has served our country proudly for over 30 years.

“Gina Haspel will make a fine CIA director because she knows what it takes to keep our country safe. She is worthy of confirmation and we are hopeful the Republicans – including U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Bowling Green, who has said he will vote against her confirmation – garner enough votes within their own party and perhaps one or two moderates on the left to make that happen.”

The 61-year-old Ashland native had a confirmation hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee earlier this week. The panel will receive written answers to its follow-up questions early next week, after which they would vote, leading to a full Senate vote late next week or, more likely, early the following one, congressional aides told the New York Times.

Republican U.S. Senator John McCain of Arizona has said he will likely vote against Haspel, while Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia has expressed support for her, meaning she will likely receive confirmation, by a narrow margin.

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One Comment

  1. Tom Coe says:

    There has been no valuable info gathered as the result of “enhanced” interrogation. To suggest so is irresponsible of BGDN and makes them appear to be guilty of partisanship – much like the libs they deride for objecting to Haspel’s nomination.

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