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'Too tough on terrorists': Trump defends under-fire CIA Director nominee Haspel

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'Too tough on terrorists': Trump defends under-fire CIA Director nominee Haspel

CNN says White House officials raised concerns with Haspel about her ability to get confirmed and she offered to withdraw if that would help the situation.

Haspel, who serves as the CIA's deputy director and has spent 33 years in the agency, most of it undercover, faces some opposition in Congress because of her connection to the interrogation program that was set up after the September 11, 2001, attacks. "When the American people finally have a chance to see the true Gina Haspel on Wednesday, they will understand why she is so admired and why she is and will be a great leader for this agency".

Then Haspel returned to the headquarters of the Central Intelligence Agency in Langley, Virginia. "When the men and women finally have a opportunity to observe the authentic Gina Haspel on Wednesday, they will know why she's so honored and she is and can also be a awesome leader for this particular agency". But Haspel is facing an uphill confirmation battle because of the role she played in the waterboarding of radical Islamic terrorism figures, in a "black site" prison in Thailand, in the wake of the 9/11 attacks on NY and Washington, D.C.

He recanted that position, but given his complaint on Twitter Monday morning that Ms. Haspel had "come under fire because she was too tough on Terrorists", there's reason to doubt the sincerity of his earlier pledges to follow global law.

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Haspel's Senate confirmation hearing is scheduled for this Wednesday.

However, Haspel has encounter under partisan pressure in recent months, and reportedly offered to withdraw, though Fox News couldn't independently verify those reports.

Taken aback at her stance, senior White House aides, including legislative affairs head Marc Short and press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, rushed to Langley, Va., to meet with Haspel at her office late Friday afternoon. Her nomination would be in jeopardy only if she loses the support of Republicans, who hold a slim 51-49 seat majority in the Senate. In that time, she has been the recipient of several awards, such as the George H.W. Bush Award for excellence in counterterrorism and the Presidential Rank Award.

According to numerous reports, key Al-Qaeda suspects Abu Zubaydah and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri were brutally interrogated, slammed against walls, and repeatedly waterboarded in 2002 in Thailand.

Haspel's work also has been praised by members of the Obama administration - like former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, former CIA Director John Brennan, and former CIA Deputy Director Michael Morrell. "All green-lighted during her 32-year career".

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