Carter, Walt and Mearsheimer, This One’s for You; Freeman Named National Intelligence Council Chairman

by James M. Wall

It is official: Ambassador Charles Freeman has been appointed chairman of the National Intelligence Council. The announcement came Thursday afternoon from the Director of National Intelligence, Dennis C. Blair. 

From the Office of the Director of National Intelligence:

Director of National Intelligence Dennis C. Blair has selected Charles W. Freeman, Jr. to be Chairman of the National Intelligence Council (NIC). As Chairman, Ambassador Freeman will be responsible for overseeing the production of National Intelligence Estimates (NIEs) and other Intelligence Community (IC) analytic products.

‘Ambassador Freeman is a distinguished public servant who brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise in defense, diplomacy and intelligence that are absolutely critical to understanding today’s threats and how to address them,’ Director Blair said. ‘The country is fortunate that Ambassador Freeman has agreed to return to public service and contribute his remarkable skills toward further strengthening the Intelligence Community’s analytical process.’ 

As a former United States negotiator, Freeman has worked with more than 100 foreign governments in East and South Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and both Western and Eastern Europe. He has served as Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, U.S. Ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Deputy Chief of Mission and Chargé d’Affaires in Bangkok and Beijing, Director of Chinese Affairs at U.S. State Department, and Distinguished Fellow at the United States Institute of Peace and the Institute of National Security Studies. Freeman received his J.D. from the Harvard School of Law. Ambassador Freeman will report to DNI Blair and the Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Analysis, Dr. Peter Lavoy.

The first report I received on the appointment came from Robert Dreyfuss’ blog for Nation magazine. Dreyfuss reproduced the announcement and then concludes:

The campaign against Freeman was both ignorant and unrelenting.

The Weekly Standard, which had quacked about the appointment finally surrended to it, aghast, but called it “a disgrace,” in a moronic article entitled “It’s Official: Saudi Puppet to Head NIC.”

It’s nice to win one, now and then.

As my earlier postings will indicate, here and here and here, the MSM has not covered this battle. Why should they? The Lobby always wins.

The story was reported by bloggers like Robert Dreyfuss and Philip Weiss’ Mondoweiss, as a heated internal Jewish battle over the appointment, which it largely was. 

The strongly anti-Freeman Israel Lobby was aligned against pro-Freeman Jewish progressives. Now it will be interesting to see how the MSM outlets report what is clearly a major defeat for the Israel Lobby.  

The JTA, a conservative “Global News Service for the Jewish People” described Freeman as a “controversial former U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia”. The conservative Washington Times, reported the opening paragraph of the official news release. It then devoted the rest of its story to rehashing distorted charges against Freeman for being “anti-Israel”.  

Dreyfuss is right; it is good to win one from time to time. And lest we forget, this appointment, which was vigorously resisted by the Israel Lobby, was made under the presidency of Barack Obama.

Jimmy Carter, Steven Walt and John Mearsheimer, this one’s for you.

About wallwritings

From 1972 through 1999, James M. Wall was editor and publisher of the Christian Century magazine, based in Chicago, lllinois. He was a Contributing Editor of the Century from 1999 until July, 2017. He has written this blog, wall, since it was launched April 27, 2008. If you would like to receive Wall Writings alerts when new postings are added to this site, send a note, saying, Please Add Me, to Biography: Journalism was Jim's undergraduate college major at Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia. He has earned two MA degrees, one from Emory, and one from the University of Chicago, both in religion. He is an ordained United Methodist clergy person. He served for two years in the US Air Force, and three additional years in the USAF reserve. While serving on active duty with the Alaskan Command, he reached the rank of first lieutenant. He has worked as a sports writer for both the Atlanta Journal and Constitution, was editor of the United Methodist magazine, Christian Advocate for ten years, and editor and publisher of the Christian Century magazine for 27 years. James M Wall died March 22, 2021 at age 92. His family appreciates all of his readers, even those who may have disagreed with his well-informed writings.
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3 Responses to Carter, Walt and Mearsheimer, This One’s for You; Freeman Named National Intelligence Council Chairman

  1. Harris Fawell says:

    Charles Freeman is an excellent choice for Chairman of the National Intelligence Council.

  2. Pingback: Yes Virginia, There is an Israel Lobby and It is Still Fighting Charles Freeman « Wallwritings

  3. Pingback: The Times Wakes Up While Schumer Says He Helped the White House Do the Right Thing « Wallwritings

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