President-elect Donald Trump, a harsh critic of U.S. intelligence agencies, is working with top advisers on a plan that would restructure and pare back the nation’s top spy agency, people familiar with the planning said.
The move is prompted by his belief that the Office of the Director of National Intelligence has become bloated and politicized, these people said.
One of the people familiar with Mr. Trump’s planning said advisers also are working on a plan to restructure the Central Intelligence Agency, cutting back on staffing at its Virginia headquarters and pushing more people out into field posts around the world. The CIA declined to comment.
Trump has repeatedly dismissed the intelligence community's conclusion that Russian hackers were behind leaked emails from Democratic operatives and that the cyber attacks were an attempt to sway the 2016 election. Just this week, Trump tried to cast doubt on the conclusion that Russia was behind the hacks and cited Wikileaks founder Julian Assange's claim that he did not receive leaked emails from Russia.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Trump and some of his advisers believe that "the intelligence community’s position—that Russia tried to help his campaign—is an attempt to undermine his victory or say he didn’t win."