Keep Intel Apolitical

The US intelligence community should be kept “apolitical,” Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told the Senate Armed Services Committee Thursday. Responding to questions from Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) at a hearing about cyber?security, Clapper said, “I could not feel stronger” about keeping politics out of intelligence assessments, saying it’s crucial that the intel community be “independent” and “be seen as providing unvarnished, untainted, objective, accurate, timely, relevant intelligence.” Clapper noted that he has been in the business nearly 50 years, and described himself and most of the community as “apolitical,” noting, “I have been a political appointee of both parties.” McCaskill was referencing a Wall Street Journal article describing the incoming administration as wanting to reorganize the intel community. Clapper said none of his agencies have been consulted on such a plan.