Biden returns Obama-era CIA deputy director David Cohen to his old job

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Biden returns Obama-era CIA deputy director David Cohen to his old job

President-elect makes appointment ahead of inauguration on 20 January, as his position is not subject to Senate confirmation

Joe Biden
Joe Biden

President-elect Joe Biden named David Cohen, the deputy CIA director under President Barack Obama, to his old job.

Cohen, who rose up through the intelligence ranks as an Iran sanctions enforcer, will be able to start as soon as Biden is inaugurated on Jan. 20, as the deputy director is not subject to Senate confirmation.

His experience at the agency will prove useful to Biden as the likelihood increases that the president will not have any Senate-confirmed officials in place by Jan. 20. Cohen’s Iran experience, at Treasury and the CIA, also will be handy as Biden seeks to immediately reenter the Iran nuclear deal.

Congress has come to a standstill as it deals with the fallout of President Donald Trump’s insistence that he has won the election. In the past, key Cabinet secretaries have been in place by Inauguration Day or shortly thereafter.

Cohen reportedly was on Biden’s shortlist for CIA director. Biden ultimately nominated William Burns, a State Department veteran with deep experience in the Middle East and in Russia.

Cohen since his youth has been involved in Jewish causes and issues. One of his first jobs was working for Nathan Lewin, an attorney who sought to defend the right of towns to display Chanukah menorahs on public property.

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...


Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.


There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.


In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.


Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish News also produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more: