White House Was Told of Instability at End of 2010, Intelligence Official Says

The U.S. intelligence committee warned President Barack Obama's administration of instability in Egypt at the end of 2010, but did not foresee the trigger for unrest, a top U.S. intelligence official said on Thursday.

"We have warned of instability. We didn't know what the triggering mechanism would be for that. And that happened at the end of the last year," said Stephanie O'Sullivan, a current CIA official nominated to become the principal deputy director of national intelligence.

She was asked at her Senate confirmation hearing when the U.S. intelligence community warned Obama that protesters might threaten Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's grip on power.