Administration Considering Split of NSA, Cyber Command Leadership

Some officials are worried the dual role could give one person too much power.

National Journal
Jordain Carney
Nov. 7, 2013, 5:04 a.m.

Na­tion­al Se­cur­ity Coun­cil of­fi­cials are ex­pec­ted to meet soon to dis­cuss the pos­sib­il­ity of sep­ar­at­ing Na­tion­al Se­cur­ity Agency and Cy­ber Com­mand lead­er­ship, The Wash­ing­ton Post re­ports.

Gen. Keith Al­ex­an­der, who is sched­uled to re­tire in March, has had a dual lead­er­ship role since 2010, when he was con­firmed as the head of Cy­ber Com­mand. He has led the NSA since 2005. Al­ex­an­der said last month that it would cre­ate “more prob­lems by try­ing to sep­ar­ate them and have two people fight­ing over who’s in charge than put­ting it all to­geth­er.”

But some of­fi­cials are wor­ried that al­low­ing one per­son to lead both agen­cies is an un­ne­ces­sary con­cen­tra­tion of in­flu­ence. The ad­min­is­tra­tion is also con­sid­er­ing if the NSA should be lead by a ci­vil­ian, but of­fi­cials said no de­cision has been made on either is­sue.