The new director of the CIA, Gina Haspel, began her 33-year career as a spy during the Cold War. Shortly after was working in a covert manner, she countering the Russian spies who they continued their attempts to infiltrate the United States government. The investigation into Haspel’s career at the CIA has focused on her role in the agency’s brutal and ancient program in questioning suspected terrorists, but she will surely take advantage of her intelligence experience with Russian operations to take over the reins of the agency.

President Donald Trump has said that this bilateral tension is worse than during the Cold War. All this is aggravated by the investigations into the interference of Moscow in the elections that brought Trump to power. The US Senate on Thursday confirmed Haspel, 61, as the first woman to take over the leadership of the CIA after a complicated nomination process that reopened a debate on the brutal interrogation techniques in one of the darkest chapters in the history of the spy agency. Russia has been a priority objective throughout Haspel’s career. That became clear when former Senator Evan Bayh, an Indiana Democrat, presented Haspel at his Senate hearing: “She is an expert, with her eyes and nose firmly fixed in Russia”.

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Haspel was a member of the Air Force, joined the CIA in January 1985, when he was 28 years old. At that time, the director of the CIA, William Casey, sought to counteract the Soviet expansion, reduce the influence of Moscow, win the Cold War and strengthen the intelligence operations of the United States. Not many details of Haspel’s career are known because much of it is under secrecy, including the places where it was assigned, but the CIA has provided an overview.

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Her first destination was Africa, where she had a memorable encounter with Mother Teresa. Upon her return, Haspel learned Russian and Turkish. By then, the Berlin Wall had fallen and the Soviet Union was about to fall apart. Relations between Washington and Moscow became more cordial. In a few years, President Bill Clinton exchanged jokes with Russian leader Boris Yeltsin, but the CIA saw a continuing threat from Russian intelligence. “The Soviet Union had collapsed, but its intelligence services did not collapse,” said Dan Hoffman, a former high-ranking CIA official who knows Haspel well and agreed to talk to The Associated Press about his career.

“They were still doing interference work in the United States government,” he added. After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Haspel joined the CIA’s Counter-Terrorism Center, and during this time she monitored a secret location in Thailand where terrorism suspects were subjected to harsh interrogations, which included of simulated drowning called “submarine”. Her work in that program attracted overwhelming protests from human rights activists. The world was watching the confirmation vote, which he called a “referendum on torture” or “enhanced interrogation techniques”.

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Haspel has vowed never to restart such a program and says her “strong moral compass” would prevent her from carrying out any presidential order she found objectionable. That was enough to put some senators into the “yes” column. Anyway, the new leadership of CIA was not just about Haspel, but the U.S. struggling with its past mistakes. To wrap up, no one has ever been held accountable investigation for the torture program, let see what Haspel acts during her chance to make CIA great again.

 

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