John Brennan is an excellent choice to be the next director of the CIA. He served in the agency both on the analytic and operational sides of the organization. He has an insiders understanding of the unique culture of the spy organization. At the same time he has the confidence of the President from four years in the White House as Obama’s counter terrorism czar. Its a very unique skill set. He will inherit an agency facing some key decisions. For a decade, the CIA has rightly been pre-occupied with the al Qaeda threat and supporting two large wars. The era of large ground wars is ending even as the al Qaeda threat is being transformed by the Arab Awakening from Mali to Syria. The challenge ahead will getting conflicting priorities right in an era when America faces many intelligence requirements with tighter budgets to meet them. The DCIA also oversees a global espionage alliance and he has to build and manage productive liaison relations with many other countries, some friends and some not so friendly or even worse. Brennan has years of experience with this clandestine diplomacy. His close ties to Obama will enhance his strengths as America’s top spy master.
It is too soon to tell whether Pompeo would take a different approach toward Turkey...Though I wouldn’t expect the direction of U.S. policy to change significantly...The working groups put in place after Tillerson’s Ankara meetings were something that multiple other secretaries of state had used in the past to address tough policy issues, and there [is] no reason why this particular group could not continue under the new leadership...[Moreover], U.S. policy on the issues of Brunson and Gülen will not change.