Lt. Gen. Paul Nakasone to Head NSA/CYBERCOM

March 28, 2018  |  By Holly Dragoo

Lt. Gen. Paul Nakasone delivered a second testimony before the U.S. Senate this month as President Trump’s nominee to be the next director of the National Security Agency (DIRNSA). If confirmed, he would replace ADM Mike Rogers as director upon his retirement this April. Rogers also has been onboard as Commander of the U.S. Cyber Command in the dual-hatted role since 2014. The Agency experienced much turmoil in recent years, with talent drain, low morale, and a series of leaks, so much is riding on firm leadership of the next officer in charge. 

IISP Analyst Holly Dragoo: "After two Senate confirmation hearings, it’s looking inevitable that Lt. Gen. Nakasone will be the next DIRNSA, and not a bad one at that. We get 30 years of intelligence experience with Nakasone, and great familiarity with cybersecurity and the complexity with which combat and espionage activities exist in that space – which is great (and percentage wise, somewhat rare among staff at that rank). There’s no policy in place to mandate that the next DIRNSA should be an Air Force general, but it is a bit out of turn to select an Army official when there was one (Gen. Keith Alexander) as recently as 2014. It likely won’t detract too much from the confirmation process, if it does at all."


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