In late November, The Institute of World Politics was treated to a timely and thought-provoking talk on the “new” Intelligence Politicization by Dr. John Gentry, a former CIA officer and adjunct professor at Georgetown University. Dr. Gentry, who has written extensively on the topic and recently published a book, Neutering the CIA, contends that recent “formers,” or former leaders of the Intelligence Community, came out in unprecedented force against President Trump and his administration’s policies. Such efforts are in opposition to Intelligence Community (IC) accepted practice where its senior leaders, even after they retire, try to remain apolitical. To add to this “resistance” against the former president, Gentry contends these leaders implemented Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) policies while they were in office where the primary goal was (and still is) not to increase the quality and effectiveness of the IC workforce, but to fill it with like-minded individuals to resist administration polices with which they disagree.
Gentry noted that the Trump administration is not the only one where high-level politicization occurred, but that it was at its most egregious due to the vocal involvement of former high-level IC officials. Dr. Gentry remained afterwards and graciously signed copies of his book that was on sale. His presentation, co-sponsored by the IWP Student Chapter of the International Association of Intelligence Education (IAFIE), is available on the IWP YouTube channel (and below).