Paul was reacting to reports that the Defense Department plans to expand its DIA operatives to 1,600 people and go beyond intelligence gathering into covert operations.
"This move signals a major change in how the administration intends to conduct military and paramilitary operations overseas. Unfortunately it is not a shift toward peace, but rather to an even more deadly and disturbing phase in the 'war on terror,' " Paul said.
Paul said congressional oversight of DIA activities will be "difficult," because the Pentagon will control its activities. He said the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is already acting on its own, without congressional knowledge or approval, and that the DIA appears likely to become a second agency outside the control of Congress.
"Because the DIA is operationally under control of the Pentagon, direct Congressional oversight of the program will be more difficult," he said. "Perhaps this is as intended. The CIA will be training the DIA in its facilities to conduct operations overseas. Much of this will include developing targeting data for the president's expanding drone warfare program."
Paul noted that the Obama administration is considering boosting the DIA even though Obama himself said recently that Israel or any other country should not have to tolerate attacks from the outside.
"I believe what the president says about Israel is true everywhere, so what about those overseas who live in fear of our raining missiles? How will they feel about the United States?" Paul asked. "Is it not possible that we may be inviting more blowback by expanding the covert war overseas? Does that make us safer?"
Earlier this month, Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) made similar arguments against an expansion of the DIA.
"Why the Pentagon needs its own spy agency is anyone's guess — maybe to keep an eye on its own generals when the CIA and FBI do not," Kucinich said on the House floor on Dec. 3. "Meanwhile, the CIA has been taking over Pentagon functions, conducting military strikes with drones all around the world. We have the CIA bombing people and the Pentagon spying on people. Who knows what the other dozen spy agencies are up to?"