Goss Was Told to Resign, Sources Say

ByABC News
May 5, 2006, 6:24 PM

May 5, 2006 — -- In the midst of the war on terror and after just 19 months on the job, CIA Director Porter Goss has announced his resignation.

Goss was hand selected by President Bush in August 2004 to overhaul the nation's top spy agency after it missed the intelligence clues in the weeks leading up to the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. At the time, Bush described the former CIA operative as "the right man to lead at this critical moment."

But now, sources told ABC News, National Intelligence Director John Negroponte told Goss it was time to go.

"As my friend for almost 50 years," Negroponte said in a statement after Goss's announcement, "I will miss Porter's day-to-day counsel. I salute his service to our country, and I want to thank him for his outstanding work on behalf of the men and women of our nation's intelligence community."

But sources tell ABC News that Negroponte told Goss just last week that it was time for him to resign. A senior CIA source said that the two men had at least three management disputes -- including Negroponte's desire to move personnel out of the CIA Counterterrorism Center into the new National Counterterrorism Center, and Negroponte's perceived micromanaging in which he wanted a say over CIA station chiefs.

The same source said that some of Negroponte's senior staff were ex-CIA workers and had a grudge against Goss.

When Goss took over the top spot at the CIA, he sat atop the nation's 16 intelligence agencies. When Negroponte took the newly created position of national intelligence director in April 2005, he in effect became Goss's boss, and the two reportedly bumped heads on a number of issues.

And it's not a secret that Goss rubbed a number of people in the intelligence community the wrong way with his own management style. He came under fire almost immediately, in part because he brought with him several top aides from Congress who were considered highly political for the CIA.

Just two weeks ago, Goss announced the firing of a top intelligence analyst in connection with a Pulitzer Prize-winning story about a network of CIA prisons in eastern Europe, a dismissal considered highly unusual.