Remembering John Rizzo
The CIA’s long-time acting general counsel, John Rizzo, died suddenly earlier this month. Lawfare published my tribute to the man, reproduced below.
John Rizzo and I shared a path that goes back more than 50 years. We had parallel careers in the intelligence community and then in private practice at Steptoe & Johnson, but we first met as undergrads at Brown. John used to joke that this accounted for our good working relationship. The 1960s gave us each a bottomless fund of kompromat.
In fact, the real secret was John’s deep reserve of institutional wisdom disguised as tart irony. In this regard, John’s book, “Company Man,” is as true to the man as any memoir ever written. It captures his refusal to take himself too seriously while taking with utmost seriousness his responsibility to apply the law to intelligence operations. For decades he was the last word on what CIA operatives could and could no
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