CIA director under Bush says today’s Republican Party is more ‘nihilistic and dangerous’ than terror groups by Sravasti Dasgupta

General Michael Hayden

Michael Hayden is a vocal critic of former president Donald Trump and MAGA supporters

Former CIA chief General Michael Hayden has said that he agrees there is no political force more nihilistic or dangerous than the current RepublicanParty.

General Hayden, who headed the Central Intelligence Agency from 2006 to 2009 during the final years of George W Bush’s presidency, made the jarring statement in response to a tweet by Financial Times journalist Edward Luce.

On 12 August, Mr Luce tweeted: “I’ve covered extremism and violent ideologies around the world over my career. Have never come across a political force more nihilistic, dangerous & contemptible than today’s Republicans. Nothing close.”

“I agree. And I was the CIA Director,” General Hayden, a vocal critic of former president Donald Trump and his supporters, tweeted in response on Thursday.

General Hayden has also taken on MAGA [Make American Great Again] fans on social media and retweeted memes critical of them.

General Hayden also served as the director of the National Security Agency and the principal deputy director of national intelligence.

In 2014, he was accused of lying about the CIA’s interrogation techniques to Congress by California senator Dianne Feinstein. But Gen Hayden rejected those claims.

Earlier this month Federal Bureau of Investigation agents conducted multi-hour searches at Mr Trump’s Palm Beach, Florida, residence in connection with “classified nuclear documents” that the former president reportedly carried with him from the White House.

Following the raid, presidential historian Michael Beschloss said in a tweet that Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, Americans who were convicted of spying on behalf of the Soviet Union, were “convicted for giving US nuclear secrets to Moscow, and were executed June 1953”.

General Hayden responded in a tweet: “Sounds about right.”

He had endorsed president Joe Biden in 2020 and described Mr Trump as a leader who “doesn’t care about facts”. The former intel chief frequently retweets posts bashing the unvaccinated as well as Mr Trump.

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