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Experience

I retired from the US Government in early January 2019 following a 38-year career with the US Department of State's Bureau of Intelligence and Research where I managed, mentored, wrote about diplomacy, politics and military affairs, and explained realpolitik to elected leaders, foreign policy decision-makers, military officials and congressional figures.

  • From 1980 to 1987, I worked on the USSR, attempting to discern Soviet leadership thinking and intentions from open media (Pravda, Izvestiya, etc.) (please click here for an overview of "Kremlinology"; to get an idea of the environment in which we worked, please read about the late Donald Graves, one of my colleagues, here). I was trained in analytic tradecraft by veterans of the OSS; my first supervisor, the late Martha Mautner, worked in the Embassy in Berlin during the 1948-49 airlift. I explored and wrote about the implications of a broad range of Soviet clandestine activities and eventually was recruited to be the sole writer for the Active Measures Working Group. Please click here to read a study documenting the activities of the AMWG; you may view my unclassified publications, prepared specifically for the counter-Soviet effort, here. (You may also view one of the last cables I drafted as I was moving from Soviet to Mideast affairs here.)
  • In 1987 I was invited by the department leadership to work on the Middle East, and for the next 27 years examined the Arab-Israeli conflict, US-Israel relations, Israel's relationship with Iran, Syria, Russia, the Palestinians, internal Israeli politics, political-military relations and the strategic balance.
  • Prior to my retirement from the department, I had been working on foreign policy issues related to Africa, including Nigeria.

During the course of my career I received numerous Departmental and intelligence community awards for my leadership skills and scholarship. I penned thousands of articles, memos, research papers and in-depth analyses on a vast array of topics for policymakers, Congress and the White House, and appeared before Congressional committees to provide testimony and assessments. I am intimately familiar with analytic tradecraft and the intelligence profession more generally; my expertise is open-source and all-source intelligence analysis. Please contact me if I can be of assistance. Thank you.