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Attn: Chairman Richard Burr and Vice Chairman Mark Warner ID: LFG-2017-0013

Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

211 Hart Senate Office Building

Washington, D.C. 20510

Sent via: Mail

Attn: Chairman Devin Nunes and Ranking Member Adam Schiff

House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence

Capitol Visitor Center HVC-304

US Capitol Building

Washington, D.C. 20515

Sent via: Mail

October 2nd, 2017

Re: Request for oversight of the Central Intelligence Agency’s use of drones in foreign countries and
request for reforms that are needed in the Central Intelligence Agency

Chairman Richard Burr, Chairman Devin Nunes, Vice Chairman Mark Warner, Ranking Member Adam
Schiff and Senator Dianne Feinstein,

I am in part sending you this letter in response as to President Donald Trump aspiring to change the
Central Intelligence Agency’s limitations on being involved in drone strikes in foreign countries. As you
may already know, some of the new changes will be different from what President Barack H. Obama’s
Administration had previously put in place in which limited the Central Intelligence Agency’s use of
drone strikes in foreign countries. Since it does appear as if President Donald Trump is working as to
reversing the past Central Intelligence Agency’s policy as to operating drones in other countries, I hope
that you are all aware that this new move will expand the Central Intelligence Agency’s authority and
power as to engaging in drone strikes in foreign countries. I am not so sure that this will shine good light
as far as the United States is concerned. The other part of my letter to you is myself requesting some
reforms that I believe need to be made as to the Central Intelligence Agency. In this letter I will first start
by discussing this drone issue and then some reforms that I believe need to be made to the Central
Intelligence Agency.1

I am extremely concerned as to finding out that President Donald Trump wants the United States to be
more involved in drone strikes that are operated by the Central Intelligence Agency in foreign countries.2
I personally do not believe that the United States increasing its involvement in drone strikes in foreign
countries would have positive consequences as far as the United States is concerned. Part of the reason

1
This letter will not address all of the reforms that I believe that the Central Intelligence Agency needs.
2
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/military/trump-admin-wants-increase-cia-drone-strikes-n802311

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why I believe this is because in the past the United States was involved in drone strikes that have always
in some point in time accidentally targeted civilians in which have included families and children. I
believe that giving the Central Intelligence Agency expanded and broader authority to operate drones in
foreign countries as for striking purposes will shine bad light on the United States. I also believe that this
new policy change will give fuel and fire to entities that have been associated as with extremism.

While it may be true that it may economically be better as for the Central Intelligence Agency to use
drones as a tool to fight against entities that have been labeled as to being associated as with extremism
in comparison as to the United States sending troops to fight on the ground in foreign countries, I
however do not believe that giving the Central Intelligence Agency expanded or broader authority to
conduct drone strikes in foreign countries will shine good light as far as the United States is concerned. I
would like to point out once again that there have been a countless number of innocent families that
have been killed in the past by drones that were operated by the United States in other countries. As
you may already know, there is not a take back button one a drone strikes a target. Once a drone strikes
a target, it is too late as for the targeted individual or individuals. I personally cannot imagine being born
in a country that was repetitively subjected to random drone strikes in which innocent civilians are or
have the possibility as to being targeted for just going outside or simply being in their own residences.
Just imagine how you would feel if you were a national of a foreign country and your family was
accidentally targeted by a drone that was operated by the United States in another country. Would that
make you want to join an entity that was associated as with extremism in a foreign country?

I believe that it is extremely important for the United States to use extreme caution when operating
drones in all foreign countries. Drones striking innocent civilians has got to stop and that cannot be
tolerated. I believe that innocent citizens of foreign countries have a right to not be targeted
accidentally through drone strikes that are operated by the United States.

Reforms that the Central Intelligence Agency needs:

When bringing up reforms that I believe that the United States needs to make, I first believe that when it
concerns the Central Intelligence Agency, I believe the intelligence agency should never be political.3 The
Director of the Central Intelligence position is nominated by the President of the United States. As to be
a candidate for the Director of Central Intelligence position, that position does not require an individual
to have any experience as from being in the intelligence community or even working at the Central
Intelligence Agency or at any intelligence agency of the United States. I believe that does have the
potential to be a problem because now you have politicians deciding and using politics as to determining
who will be in charge as for the top intelligence agency position with the Central Intelligence Agency. To
help make sure that politics does not get entangled with the Central Intelligence Agency, I think that the
candidates as for that top intelligence position may need to only be veteran employees who have served
the agency or of another intelligence agency of the United States.

3
This includes but is not limited to the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. I believe that the intelligence
agencies of the United States should never be political because politics does have a history as to negatively
impacting countries from being able to successfully succeed. Politics should never get in the way as with the
intelligence community being able to conduct investigations or to respond appropriately as to changes that would
help ensure that the United States improves in some area or another.

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Second, I believe that with regard as to policies that the United States has as to refusing to negotiate as
with extremists, I strongly would like to recommend that change. I do not believe that there are ever
negative consequences as with listening to your enemy. As far as the Central Intelligence Agency or any
other known or unknown intelligence agency of the United States are concerned, I believe that all
intelligence agencies of the United States should always listen to their enemy. Possible settlements,
compromises and misunderstandings being resolved could occur if this was true. While I am in no way
saying that the intelligence community needs to take or to follow orders from individuals that are
associated as with entities that have been known as to endorsing or committing terrorist acts around
the world, I however do strongly recommend that the United States listen, negotiate and compromise
with individuals in those types of entities so that a settlement as to any issues or even of
misunderstandings can occur.

Third, I believe that some individuals join entities that the United States has determined as to being
involved in extremism in foreign countries because that individual felt isolated or mistreated from the
world or maybe someone joined because their family was accidentally killed in a drone strike operated
by the United States. I am not saying that acts of terrorism are acceptable even if there is a legitimate
reason as to why an individual partook in the acts, I would however like to point out that you never
know why some individuals do the things that they do. That is why I believe that it should be imperative
for the intelligence community to always respectfully talk with people as to finding out their stories and
opinions and why they think the way that they do. I believe that if this occurs that there is a higher
probability that a peaceful settlement and even misunderstandings being peacefully resolved can be a
reality.

Fourth, I believe that the Central Intelligence Agency does not need to be involved in torture. President
Donald Trump has stated that he wants to bring back torture.4 I however believe that such a decision
would not shine good light as to the United States. Not only do I believe that torture violates
international law, I believe that torturing detainees would give fuel and fire to enemies of the United
States to be involved in torturing Americans in foreign countries. I would also like to point out that the
United States has in the past tortured the wrong targeted individuals and torturing the wrong
individuals will lead to false confessions, misguided calculations, false intelligence and will create
enemies of the United States. As a country I believe that we are better than torture.

Fifth, I believe that if the United States wants to provide any type of assistance to any group in another
country, I believe that the United States then needs to stick with their commitment. When using the
revolution in Syria as an example, individuals in Syria marched through the streets to protest against
cruel and degrading treatment that they were receiving by government forces as you may already know.
Protestors took to the streets and wanted the United States to help them support their revolution for
liberty. The United States provided arms to the Free Syrian Army under the Obama Administration.
However, the Trump Administration has stopped providing assistance to moderate rebel groups in the
Syria. I believe that this is disastrous foreign policy because I believe that in order to reach goals that
commitments need to be fulfilled. I believe that the United States does need to keep commitments
instead of supporting something with one presidential administration and then completely abandoning
a group when the United States has a new presidential administration coming into power.

4
https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/01/trump-torture/514463/

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Sixth, I believe that the Central Intelligence Agency needs to treat its employees better than the way in
which they have treated former employee Ms. Sabrina De Sousa. The treatment as to an ex. employee
of the Central intelligence Agency touched my heart. I sent a letter to President Barack Obama on
October 6th, 2016 regarding this issue. Sadly, I did not get a response from the White House regarding
this issue. When President Donald Trump got elected as the President of the United States, I sent him a
letter as to this past issue. I am extremely happy that he took action. I believe that if an operation that
was approved by Washington goes wrong and employees of the Central Intelligence Agency are caught
in a foreign country, I believe that the United States needs to support their employees in foreign
countries through the legal system instead of just demanding that their employees not talk with any
attorney in a foreign criminal court. I do believe that may be a procedural due process violation.

Seventh, I am extremely concerned as with the United States declaring war on terror. I do not believe
that the Central Intelligence Agency having a war on terror would ever work as to truly resolving
terrorism. I believe that the United States needs to change this war on terror ideology to a war on
extremism ideology. Instead of the Central Intelligence Agency solely relying on sending drones to
foreign countries to target individuals that they associate as with extremism, I believe that instead the
Central Intelligence Agency needs to listen, respectfully learn from the individual’s ideology and to then
get involved in the investment of education because I believe that education is the most powerful
weapon that can be used to change the world. I believe that sending drones to foreign countries will
only help as with dismantling a group for a period of time. I however believe that providing education
has the potential as to helping make sure that the quality of life as for all generations in our country and
in foreign countries will be a success.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, I strongly believe that the United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and that
the United States House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence needs to provide oversight as to
the Central Intelligence Agency’s use of drones in all foreign countries. I am also hoping that both
congressional intelligence committees will work as to helping make sure that the reforms that are listed
in my letter are a reality with the Central Intelligence Agency. While I do appreciate the sacrifices that
our founding fathers made as to working to make the United States into a perfect union as to the best of
their abilities, I would however like to add that we are in no way a perfect country. I believe that
whenever reforms are needed in the United States, I believe that the United States does need to reform
its policy on different issues appropriately and to take all requests as for reform seriously. Doing so will
help make sure that the United States is a perfect union as to the best of our abilities.

Respectfully,

Isaiah X. Smith

Isaiah Smith Campaign

P.O Box 163411

Fort Worth, Texas, 76161

www.isaiahxsmith.com

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cc:

Senator Dianne Feinstein

Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

211 Hart Senate Office Building

Washington, D.C. 20510

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