Morning Report: May 7, 2005

Israel appoints Iran expert as security council chief. Debka: 'New focus on Iran prompts appointment of deputy Mossad chief Ilan Mizrahi, 56, as Israel’s next National Security Council chief. He replaces Gen. Giora Eiland who asked to be relieved of the post last year. DEBKAfile’s intelligence sources report the new appointee, an experienced field operative, is a world class authority on Iran and expert on Muslim and Arab affairs, although less conversant with Palestinian issues. Selecting Mizrahi for the job signposts PM Olmert’s order of strategic priorities. The NSC’s relocation from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem places a security-clandestine branch directly alongside the incoming prime minister. He acquires an ace in secret diplomacy should he wish to bypass defense minister Amir Peretz, foreign minister Tzipi Livni or his inner security cabinet, for discreet exchanges with Washington, foreign intelligence chiefs, or key Arab officials. Mizrahi knows how to reach the right person without go-betweens. He also prefers to keep a low personal profile, a rare attribute in Israeli officialdom. Father of three, the prime minister’s new national security adviser spent four years as deputy Mossad chief. He has a master’s degree in Oriental Studies.' (Debka)

Changes in the CIA. In from the Cold reports: 'Indeed, the CIA of the future will be a shadow of its former self (no pun intended). Much of its analytical function will eventually move to other organizations, such as the National Intelligence Council--which works directly for the Director of National Intelligence, John Negroponte--or the recently-established National Counter-Terrorism Center (NCTC). Both are seen as more logical homes for much of the analytical capabilities that once resided at Langley, when the CIA chief also led the nation's intelligence community.' Spook86 predicts resistance to incoming Director George Hayden's reforms, but expresses confidence that Hayden is the man for the job. Full analysis at the link. (In from the Cold)

Cross-posted at Dreams Into Lightning - TypePad.