Dr. Kenneth Dekleva served as a Regional Medical Officer/Psychiatrist (including 5 years at the U.S. Embassy Moscow, Russian Federation) with the U.S. Dept. of State during 2002-2016, and is currently Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Director, Psychiatry-Medicine Integration, UT Southwestern Medical Center. The views expressed are his own. OPINION -- ...

A rarely discussed but high impact trend that seems to have been amplified by the COVID-19 virus is affecting investment in countries that have traditionally attracted investors interested in minerals and rare earth materials.   A process that is open to corrupt parliaments, dictators and authoritarian governments has long been ...

Cipher Brief Expert John McLaughlin served as Acting CIA Director from July to September 2004 and as Deputy Director from October 2000 to July 2004. He is the Distinguished Practitioner in Residence at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). EXPERT PERSPECTIVE – President Joe Biden’s decision to ...

As part of a special series on climate in partnership with The Intelligence Project at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, and Cipher Brief Expert Kristin Wood, The Cipher Brief is focusing on the national security implications of climate change.  We spoke recently with Sherri Goodman, Senior Strategist ...

Walter Pincus is a contributing senior national security columnist for The Cipher Brief. He spent forty years at The Washington Post, writing on topics from nuclear weapons to politics. OPINION -- It’s time for serious planning to re-engage in nuclear arms control talks with Russia, China and other nuclear powers. “Arms ...

Cipher Brief Expert Ambassador Joseph DeTrani is former Special envoy for Six Party Talks with North Korea and former CIA director of East Asia Operations. He also served as the Associate Director of National Intelligence and Mission Manager for North Korea and as the Director of the National Counter Proliferation ...

Tim Willasey-Wilsey, Former Senior Member, British FOreign and Commonwealth Office Cipher Brief Expert Tim Willasey-Wilsey served for over 27 years in the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office. He is now Visiting Professor of War Studies at King’s College, London. Much of his career was spent in Asia including a posting ...

The Cipher Brief’s Academic Incubator partners with national security-focused programs from colleges and Universities across the country share the work of the next generation of national security leaders. Joshua Stone is a U.S.-China relations specialist and Ph.D. Political Science student with the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. ...

Thomas Warrick was DHS Deputy Assistant for Counterterrorism Policy from August 2008 to June 2019 and is now Director of the Future of DHS Project and Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council.  OPINION -- Border security is back on the front pages and needs urgent action to head off the ...

Ellen McCarthy, Former Asst. Secretary of State for Intelligence & Research Cipher Brief Expert Ellen E. McCarthy was appointed by President Trump to be the Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Intelligence and Research. Prior to serving in that role, McCarthy served as President of Noblis NSP, and ...

The White House is preparing to launch a Leaders Summit on Climate hosted by President Joe Biden beginning Thursday. 40 World leaders were invited to participate in the two-day series of conversations on climate and emissions as The Washington Post quotes anonymous sources saying the Biden administration is expected to ...

Walter Pincus is a contributing senior national security columnist for The Cipher Brief. He spent forty years at The Washington Post, writing on topics from nuclear weapons to politics. OPINION – Last week, the Senate and House Intelligence Committees each held their Worldwide Threats hearings with Director of National Intelligence Avril ...

Cipher Brief Expert Tim Willasey-Wilsey served for over 27 years in the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office where his focus was on South Asia and North East Asia as well as on the issues of terrorism, organised crime, insurgency and conflict resolution. He is a Visiting Professor of War Studies ...

Peter Pascucci is a commander in the United States Navy and Kurt Sanger is a lieutenant colonel in the United States Marine Corps.  They have been legal advisors to senior decision makers on military cyberspace operations and both are 2015 graduates of the Georgetown University Law Center National Security Law ...

US Climate Envoy John Kerry is in China ahead of a Climate Summit next week hosted by US President Joe Biden.  As tensions between the two countries remain high over issues ranging from Taiwan to trade to cyber, the Biden Administration is hoping there is still room for cooperation on ...

As US Worldwide Threats hearings get underway in Washington after a two-year hiatus, experts will be watching to see how the Biden Administration's new senior intelligence officials are ranking and prioritizing threats to US national security.  The hearings have for years, been seen as the most prestigious showing of senior ...

As Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies rise to record levels ahead of the direct offering of crypto exchange Coinbase, former Acting CIA Director Michael Morell is pushing back against conventional wisdom that says Bitcoin is ripe for illicit activity.  In a report sponsored by the Crypto Council for Innovation (a lobbying ...

As Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies rise to record levels ahead of the direct offering of crypto exchange Coinbase, former Acting CIA Director Michael Morell is pushing back against conventional wisdom that says Bitcoin is ripe for illicit activity.  In a report sponsored by the Crypto Council for Innovation (a lobbying ...

BOOK REVIEW: Red Widow: A Novel / Putnam  By: Alma Katsu Reviewed by Alison Bouwmeester THE REVIEWER —Alison P. Bouwmeester served for 28 years as a senior leader in the Central Intelligence Agency’s Directorate of Operations. After retiring from the CIA, she spent nearly a decade as a senior business executive ...

Walter Pincus is a contributing senior national security columnist for The Cipher Brief. He spent forty years at The Washington Post, writing on topics from nuclear weapons to politics. OPINION -- The speaker said, “What if we can actually let the President, or the National Security Advisor walk around, um, a ...

Cipher Brief Expert John E. McLaughlin served as Acting Director of Central Intelligence from July to September 2004 and as Deputy Director of Central Intelligence from October 2000 to July 2004.  He is currently the Distinguished Practitioner in Residence at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). OPINION ...

The Pentagon often wargames future scenarios for when 'all hell breaks loose' with the idea of training for the worst-case scenario.  Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin made clear when he took the helm at the Pentagon earlier this year, that - consistent with President Joe Biden’s focus on climate change ...

Paul Kolbe, Director, Intelligence Project, Harvard University's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs Paul Kolbe is Director of The Intelligence Project at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. He previously served 25 years as an operations officer in the CIA and was a member of the ...

Cipher Brief Expert Emile Nakhleh is a retired CIA Senior Intelligence Service Officer and founding director of the CIA’s Political Islam Strategic Analysis Program Office. Nakhleh is currently a Research Professor and Director of the Global and National Security Policy Institute at the University of New Mexico. EXPERT OPINION -- ...

Cipher Brief Expert and former Secretary for Homeland Security Michael Chertoff is Executive Chairman and Co-Founder of the Chertoff Group.  He served as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security from 2005-2009. The Cipher Brief wanted to get the former Secretary’s thoughts on where we are with cyber today ...

Walter Pincus is a contributing senior national security columnist for The Cipher Brief. He spent forty years at The Washington Post, writing on topics from nuclear weapons to politics.  In 2002, he and a team of Post reporters won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting. He also won an Emmy ...

Rep. John Katko (R-NY) is Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security. He is also a former federal prosecutor.  OPINION -- It should not come as a surprise to anyone reading this article that we find ourselves in the wake of two significant cyber incidents. While we are ...

Cipher Brief Expert Alex Cresswell led an operational division of GCHQ and served in the Cabinet Office, directing the team of analysts (the Joint Intelligence Organisation) which provides the British Prime Minister’s daily briefing and strategic assessments for the NSC.  EXPERT PERSPECTIVE – On 17 February 2021, the DOJ and the FBI finally ...

Rob Knake is a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and a non-resident fellow at Harvard’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. He is also an advisor to SecurityScorecard. Knake served from 2011 to 2015 as Director for Cybersecurity Policy at the National Security Council. EXPERT PERSPECTIVE ...

Walter Pincus is a contributing senior national security columnist for The Cipher Brief. He spent forty years at The Washington Post, writing on topics from nuclear weapons to politics.  In 2002, he and a team of Post reporters won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting. He also won an Emmy ...

BOOK REVIEW: Three Wise Men: A Navy SEAL, a Green Beret and How their Marine Brother Became a War’s Sole Survivor  By Beau Wise and Tom Sileo / St. Martin’s Press Reviewed by Brad Christian THE REVIEWER — Cipher Brief Expert Brad Christian is a former Green Beret and former Army Ranger ...

Join us this week Tuesday - Thursday for The Cipher Brief's Cybersecurity Summit featuring leaders from the public and private sectors, including Microsoft President Brad Smith, FireEye CEO Kevin Mandia, and 28 other cyber security thought leaders, including today's author, Andrew Stewart.  Attendance is free and registration is required. Executing Commander’s Intent at Machine Speed for Cyber ...

Cipher Brief Expert Ambassador Joseph DeTrani is former Special envoy for Six Party Talks with North Korea and the former U.S. Representative to the Korea Energy Development Organization (KEDO), as well as former CIA director of East Asia Operations. He later served as the Associate Director of National Intelligence and ...

Dr. Matthew Levitt, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy Dr. Matthew Levitt is the Fromer-Wexler fellow and director of the Reinhard program on counterterrorism and intelligence at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy.  An adjunct professor at Georgetown University’s security studies program, Levitt previously served as Treasury Deputy ...

Sonya Seunghye Lim is a former Chief of Station with the Central Intelligence Agency. Before retiring from the CIA’s Senior Intelligence Service, she had a 24-year distinguished career in the Directorate of Operations, to include two assignments as Chief of Station. OPINION -- Increasing diversity has become a priority in ...

OPINION -- A recent email from the current Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Chief of Counterintelligence (C/CI), wherein Agency retirees were reminded of their life-long obligation to protect the sensitive information with which they were entrusted while serving and to comport themselves accordingly after leaving the CIA, has reportedly touched a ...

Thomas Warrick was DHS Deputy Assistant for Counterterrorism Policy from August 2008 to June 2019 and is now Director of the Future of DHS Project at the Atlantic Council.  Javed Ali held senior counterterrorism positions at DHS, the FBI, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and the National ...

Carmen Medina, Former CIA Deputy Director of Intelligence Cipher Brief Expert Carmen Medina is a former CIA Deputy Director of Intelligence. A 32-year veteran of the Intelligence Community, she is also the author of Rebels at Work: A Handbook for Leading Change from Within. EXPERT OPINION -- Last week, Zachery Tyson ...

Emile Nakhleh is a retired CIA Senior Intelligence Service Officer and founding director of the CIA’s Political Islam Strategic Analysis Program Office. Nakhleh is currently a Research Professor and Director of the Global and National Security Policy Institute at the University of New Mexico.   OPINION -- In order to ...

OPINION -- Last week, the Biden administration spelled out its opening carrot-and-stick policy toward the Beijing regime during appearances before two different Congressional committees. Last Wednesday morning, Secretary of State Antony Blinken delivered the carrot elements to members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. During the afternoon, the sticks were ...

John McLaughlin served as Acting Director of Central Intelligence and as Deputy Director of Central Intelligence. He is the Distinguished Practitioner in Residence at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). OPINION -- The Biden administration slapped economic sanctions last week on a number of Russian officials in ...

Hitesh Sheth is the president and CEO of Vectra. Previously, he was chief operating officer at Aruba Networks and before that,  he was EVP/GM at Juniper Networks. PRIVATE SECTOR -- The March 3 notice from the Department of Homeland Security’s cybersecurity command was crisp and urgent. The headline: “Mitigate Microsoft ...

The Cipher Brief’s Academic Incubator partners with national security-focused programs from colleges and Universities across the country share the work of the next generation of national security leaders. Ian Fitzgerald is an M.A. student in International Security at George Mason University with research interests in Great Power Competition, Cyber Warfare, ...

BOOK REVIEW: 2034: A Novel of the Next World War By Elliot Ackerman and Admiral James Stavridis Reviewed by Martin Petersen THE REVIEWER — Cipher Brief Expert Martin Petersen is the former Director of the Office of East Asian Analysis and the Office of Asian Pacific and Latin American Analysis in the ...

Conrad Prince served as the Director General for Operations and Deputy Director of GCHQ from 2008 – 2015. In those roles he led GCHQ’s intelligence operations and was responsible for the development of the UK’s national offensive cyber capability. He is also a speaker at the upcoming Cipher Brief Cybersecurity ...

Eric Washabaugh, Former CIA Targeting & Technology Manager Eric Washabaugh served as a targeting and technology manager at the CIA, where he served from 2006 - 2019, leading multiple inter-agency and multi-disciplinary targeting teams focused on al-Qa’ida, ISIS, and al-Shabaab at CIA’s Counterterrorism Center (CTC). He is currently the Vice ...

Sonya Seunghye Lim is a former Chief of Station with the Central Intelligence Agency. Before retiring from the CIA’s Senior Intelligence Service, she had a 24-year distinguished career in the Directorate of Operations, to include two assignments as Chief of Station.  OPINION -- In late January 2021, alarming headlines dominated ...

In a letter obtained by The Cipher Brief this week, former CIA Directors and Acting Directors, including former Director Gina Haspel, endorsed CIA Director Bill Burns in his new role as DCIA. The letter (below) was originally submitted to the Senate Intelligence Committee, which oversaw Burns' confirmation hearing last week, in ...

Walter Pincus is a contributing senior national security columnist for The Cipher Brief. He spent forty years at The Washington Post, writing on topics from nuclear weapons to politics.  In 2002, he and a team of Post reporters won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting.  OPINION -- Reflecting on his ...

BOOK REVIEW: Eagle Down: The Last Special Forces Fighting the Forever War by Jessica Donati / PublicAffairs Reviewed by Damon Walsh, Chairman, Mission Solutions Group THE REVIEWER — Damon Walsh is a retired US Army Officer with over thirty years of combined military and defense industry experience. He served as an Infantry ...