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Gina Haspel Tried To Withdraw From Consideration To Lead The CIA

CIA Director-nominee Gina Haspel attends the ceremonial swearing in for Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at the State Department in Washington

Gina Haspel offered to withdraw her nomination as President Donald Trump's pick to head the Central Intelligence Agency on Friday after some White House officials raised concerns with her about her ability to get confirmed, several sources familiar with the nomination have told CNN.

Fearing that Wednesday's Senate confirmation hearing could shed unnecessary light on classified torture programs that could potentially amount to war crimes and taint her career and the work of the United States intelligence community, Haspel was allegedly ready to throw in the towel, before the White House and the CIA rushed to her aid over the weekend. While many continue to endorse her nomination, some members of the social media community demand her withdrawal, insisting that, if the Senate Intelligence Committee confirmation hearing is held with due diligence, Haspel stands absolutely no chance of passing the scrutiny.

Taken aback at her stance, senior White House aides, including legislative affairs head Marc Short and press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, rushed to Langley, Virginia, to meet with Haspel at her office late Friday afternoon.

The last-minute scramble came ahead of what is expected to be a tough grilling of Ms. Haspel over her role in the C.I.A.'s interrogation program created in the wake of the September 11 attacks, including secret prisons the agency established around the world to interrogate suspects.

Meanwhile, the pieces of information that are known about Haspel are disturbing to those who oppose torture.

The newspaper said Trump learned of the situation on Friday and called officials while in Dallas for the National Rifle Association convention.

But by Saturday, according to the Post's sources, Haspel agreed to stick with the nomination. Many Democrats have said she should be disqualified because she was the chief of base at a covert detention site in Thailand where two terrorism suspects were subjected to waterboarding, a technique that simulates drowning.

Last month, Trump's pick for secretary of veterans affairs, the White House doctor Ronny Jackson, withdrew from consideration after a number of allegations arose concerning his conduct.

Haspel, who would be the first woman to lead the CIA, is the first career operations officer to be nominated to lead the agency in decades. "Those who know the true Gina Haspel - who worked with her, who served with her, who helped her confront terrorism, Russian Federation and countless other threats to our nation - they nearly uniformly support her".

"There has been a fascinating phenomenon over the last few weeks".