Dead Drop: June 21

IF THE BOSS CALLS, GET HIS OR HER NAME: On June 14th, the White House released a presidential memorandum laying out  the order of succession within the CIA. On the face of it – it seemed like a routine document.  We’re told it is an update of an earlier memo from the Obama administration in 2016 setting up the pecking order for who should step up, should the current CIA director go down for any reason. For the most part, the list is what you would expect…first up is the Deputy Director, then the COO, then the head of the clandestine part of the CIA – the Deputy Director for Operations. The 11th and 12th entries on the list (gosh, we hope things don’t get that desperate) are titles unfamiliar to us.  The “Senior CIA Representative for the East Coast” and the “Senior CIA Representative for the West Coast.”  But what is most interesting is some language buried at the bottom of the memo.  “Notwithstanding the provisions of this memorandum, the President retains discretion, to the extent permitted by law, to depart from this memorandum in designating an acting D/CIA.” Given the president’s proclivity for naming “actings” – this may open the door for Acting D/CIA Kushner or something.

“IF THEY HAD ONLY LISTENED TO ME” The latest installment of that familiar theme comes from a retired Turkish intelligence officer, Mehmet Eymür, who has written a book called Decipher. According to Eymür, he heard about plans for the 9/11 attacks 40 days before they happened.  The author says he was in the U.S. at the time and that he met with the CIA and shared his warning with them. According to Daily Sabah, Eymür met with the FBI and CIA after the attacks as well but nothing came of it. Here at The Cipher Brief we are a bit skeptical about Decipher. Why? Because Eymür has reportedly written three previous books about his time with Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization (MIT) which apparently did not mention his 9/11 warning.  We’re thinking that might have come up earlier, if true.

\”The Cipher Brief has become the most popular outlet for former intelligence officers; no media outlet is even a close second to The Cipher Brief in terms of the number of articles published by formers.” – Sept. 2018, Studies in Intelligence, Vol. 62 No.

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