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Head of CIA's Iran Operations Suspended

Agents who worked under Jonathan Bank were said to be in 'open revolt' over management style of man tasked to head one of agency's most important divisions

Jon Queally, staff writer

Inside CIA headquarters in Langley, Va. (Saul Loeb / AFP-Getty Images)

Citing internal strife and criticisms over his management style by those under his command, the Los Angeles Times is reporting that the head of the CIA's Iran operations division, Jonathan Bank, has been suspended and pulled from his post.

Though technically undercover, Bank's name as a leading intelligence chief within the CIA became public knowledge in 2010 when he was outed as the agency's station chief in Pakistan following popular anger there over repeated U.S. drone attacks.

On his recent suspension, the Times reports:


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Officers and analysts in the Iran operations division, which coordinates spying on Iran and its nuclear program, were informed at a meeting last week at CIA headquarters in Langley, Va., of the decision to suspend Jonathan Bank, a veteran officer and member of the senior intelligence service.

Three former officials said the Iran operations division was in open rebellion to Bank's management style, with several key employees demanding transfers.

"Iran is one of most important targets, and the place was not functioning," one of the former officials said.


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