Trump’s acting director of national intelligence makes big moves days into tenure

President Donald Trump promised to shake up the nation’s security apparatus, and new reports indicate that he is making good on those promises.  

The New York Times revealed on Friday that acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire resigned. Joining him was his deputy, Andrew Hallman. According to the Times, the latter’s departure wasn’t voluntary.

Major Shakeup

The Times reported that now-Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell “told Mr. Hallman, popular in the office’s Liberty Crossing headquarters, that his service was no longer needed, according to two officials.”

Grennell took over as acting DNI on Thursday, and although he has said he will not be the nominee for the full-time position, he’s making big moves to overhaul the agency.

“Richard Grenell’s tenure as the nation’s top intelligence official may be short-lived,” the paper wrote, “but he wasted no time this week starting to shape his team of advisers, ousting his office’s No. 2 official — a longtime intelligence officer — and bringing in an expert on Trump conspiracy theories to help lead the agency, according to officials.”

Donald Trump announced on Thursday, “Thank you to our great US Ambassador to Germany, @RichardGrenell, for stepping in to serve as acting DNI, I will be nominating a terrific candidate for the job very soon. Stay tuned!”

CBS News: Patel to “clean house”

Grenell hasn’t just been issuing pink slips. He also brought on board Kashyap Patel, who formerly worked for Republican House Intelligence Committee member Devin Nunes.

“I hired him to bust doors down,” Nunes was quoted as saying of Patel in Lee Smith’s book, “The Plot Against the President.”

CBS News reporter Catherine Herridge announced in a tweet that Patel had been brought in as part of an effort to “clean house,” adding that he was expected to engage in “a top to bottom review.”

North Carolina’s Sen. Richard M. Burr put out a statement regarding the resignation of Maguire and Hallman. The Republican lawmaker had kind words for both.

“I’ve valued Joe’s advice and counsel during his tenure as Director of National Intelligence and at the National Counterterrorism Center, and I wish him the best.”

Regarding Hallman, Burr said, “I’ve appreciated his extensive knowledge of intelligence matters and his deep respect for the men and women of our IC. I want to thank him for all his work over the last several months during a period of transition.”

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