CIA director: Agency taking more risks
May 31,2007 00:00 by UPI

MCLEAN, Va. - CIA Director Michael Hayden said the McLean, Va.-based agency has gotten younger and is taking "more operational risk" since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Hayden said nearly half of the CIA workforce is comprised of those hired after the attacks, giving the agency "more language skills and cultural diversity," USA Today reported Thursday.

The director said new operatives are being asked to take more risks, including establishing "non-traditional" cover identities for undercover officers targeting transnational terrorist groups.

"Human intelligence (performed by CIA) is much better than anyone ever said," Hayden said. "And not nearly as good as we need it to become."

Hayden, who became CIA director May 31, 2006, said the agency has made plans to eliminate 10 percent of outside contractors providing support for "core missions." He said an in-house study found that contractors are not overused, but the high amount of hirings after the 2001 attacks caused some "inefficiencies."

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