Is al Qaeda as it stands today a threat to the US? 60 Words And A War Without End

I keep hearing the question over and over on whether al Qaeda, as it stands today, is a threat to the United States. Analysts disagree on whether AQ is fragmented or still under… Continue reading

Early Warning of The LAX Shooting?

Early warning intelligence looks a lot like this DHS report from 2009; Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization. That early warning analysis could be directly related to the… Continue reading

On target – Profile in Mountains and Minds magazine

A breakthrough in the hunt for Osama bin Laden can be traced back to a woman who grew up in small-town Montana and attended Montana State University. As a targeting officer for the… Continue reading

Interview with Private Journey Magazine

Manhunt Wins an Emmy

Manhunt Wins an Emmy The Director, Producers and film crew of Manhunt won Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special! Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special Manhunt: The Inside Story of the Hunt for Bin Laden, HBO… Continue reading

Your Data Will Be Collected

Privacy has take on a whole new meaning in the age of the internet.  Yet, the creeping erosion of our privacy appears to have taken us all by surprise.  We need a privacy… Continue reading

HuffPost Live: Good Leaks vs Bad Leaks

Despite media and government elites vilifying Edward Snowden’s actions, national security leaks are printed in newspapers every day. The selective outrage raises the question: When everyone powerful hates you…are you doing something right?… Continue reading

Interview at Mountain Film Festival Telluride

PSMag: The Changing War on Terror

Is the United States safe enough? That is the fundamental question being asked by the public, policymakers, and members of the Obama Administration after the Boston bombing. What shape is al Qaeda in… Continue reading

Late Show: CIA Analyst Nada Bakos with David Letterman – April 29, 2013

HuffPost Live on Manhunt and CIA

Link to video on HuffPost Live

Time: A Former CIA Analyst on the New Osama bin Laden Documentary, Manhunt

By Lily Rothman Over the last year, we’ve seen a lot — both on TV and at the movies — about the process by which the CIAlocated and killed Osama bin Laden. But much that has… Continue reading Humility Now!

by Nada Bakos In a Washington Post column published yesterday, “What the Iraq war taught me about Syria,” Jackson Diehl takes on the criticism of hawks like himself who have been pilloried for supporting intervention… Continue reading I Tried to Make the Intelligence Behind the Iraq War Less Bogus

Ten years ago this week, the U.S. invaded Iraq, citing intelligence that turned out to be bogus. I had to work on some of it — and I also had to work on… Continue reading

For or Against Drones: Why They Are a Red Herring

The discourse of US public opinion on terrorism changed on a single day. The ‘war on terror’ was defined by a war– not only on an identifiable group–but a war on an ideology.… Continue reading

Besides Torture, What Else Did ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ Get Wrong?

(NYTimes) In the controversy over “Zero Dark Thirty’s” stance on torture, earlier questions have been pushed aside. But in Pacific Standard magazine, Nada Bakos, a former C.I.A. operative, investigates the accuracy of the Kathryn Bigelow film on… Continue reading

How True is Zero Dark Thirty?

( When Pacific Standard called me to ask if I would write about Zero Dark Thirty, I still had not decided whether I wanted to see it. I was leaning toward no. People who work in… Continue reading

Terrorist group fills power vacuum among Syria rebels

(CNN) – In the midst of the struggle against Bashar al-Assad’s government stands Jabhat al-Nusra, recently designated by the U.S. State Department as a foreign terrorist organization. A new report by the Quilliam Foundation in London… Continue reading

GT2030: Influence of Nonstate Actors

There is a spate of recent articles lamenting over the lack of influence the US appears to have in the realm of Foreign Policy and the US is facing the reality that military… Continue reading

Spyocrats on

(Foreign Policy) The firestorm surrounding the story that U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice told on Sunday morning talk shows five days after the attack on the American diplomatic facility in Benghazi has drawn wildly… Continue reading

My interview with Women Under Siege – How one (female) CIA operative would fix our wars

Following combat operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, the United States has experienced firsthand the challenge of rebuilding a nation’s economic and societal pillars of security.  Without an international effort to stem sexualized violence… Continue reading

Attack in Libya Represents Subtle But Meaningful Shift in Threat to American Interests

HuffPost – The recent attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi likely represents a subtle but meaningful shift in the extremist threat to American interests: the catastrophic attacks on American soil at the… Continue reading

‘Terrorism Analysts’, Do They Really Exist?

Last week Glenn Greenwald and Daniel Trombly went through the academic exercise of trying to define what a ‘terrorism expert’ is or isn’t. Greenwald took the stance as titled in his article, ‘The… Continue reading

My Time as a Targeting Officer at the CIA

  The Central Intelligence Agency is, by the very nature of its mission, an opaque and intentionally misunderstood organization. To an outsider, of which I am now one, the Agency’s silence is both… Continue reading

Invading Iran and Ignoring Reality

Iran and nuclear are the new buzzwords, in fact, according to Google Trends, this month alone they have been googled as often as ‘Kardashian’. It’s a serious issue, the Obama Administration is facing… Continue reading

Sat down with Loopcast to talk about Manhunt Documentary, CIA and Counterterrorism.

Public Safety And The Fear Fortress

The Granite Mountain Hotshots, specialized firefighters in Arizona, were battling the Yarnell Hill fire on June 30th when the  confluence of a thunderstorm and dangerous winds were headed their way.  Procedures are typically… Continue reading