Obama's Intel Pick, Chas Freeman, Withdraws Due to Neocon Pressure

A new statement from Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair's office:

Director of National Intelligence Dennis C. Blair announced today that Ambassador Charles W. Freeman Jr. has requested that his selection to be Chairman of the National Intelligence Council not proceed. Director Blair accepted Ambassador Freeman’s decision with regret.

Freeman’s appointment was met by strong right-wing outrage, provoking a "fierce behind-the-scenes lobbying campaign to torpedo the appointment." The Wonk Room’s Matt Duss noted that Freeman voiced "some inconvenient truths about the Israel-Palestine conflict, and represent[ed] a challenge to the treasured neoconservative myth that US and Israeli interests are identical.” Today, Blair defended Freeman’s appointment under questioning from Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT).

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