Philip Giraldi is the executive director of the Council for the National Interest and a recognized authority on international security and counterterrorism issues. He is a former CIA counter-terrorism specialist and military intelligence officer who served eighteen years overseas in Turkey, Italy, Germany, and Spain. He was Chief of Base in Barcelona from 1989 to 1992 designated as the Agency’s senior officer for Olympic Games support. Since 1992 he consulted for a number of Fortune 500 corporate clients.
Mr. Giraldi was awarded an MA and PhD from the University of London in European History and holds a Bachelor of Arts with Honors from the University of Chicago. He speaks Spanish, Italian, German, and Turkish.
His columns on terrorism, intelligence, and security issues regularly appear in The American Conservative magazine, Huffington Post, and antiwar.com. He has written op-ed pieces for the Hearst Newspaper chain, has appeared on “Good Morning America,” MSNBC, National Public Radio, and local affiliates of ABC television. He has been a keynote speaker at the Petroleum Industry Security Council annual meeting, has spoken twice at the American Conservative Union’s annual CPAC convention in Washington, and has addressed several World Affairs Council affiliates. He has been interviewed by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the British Broadcasting Corporation, Britain’s Independent Television Network, FOX News, Polish National Television, Croatian National Television, al-Jazeera, al-Arabiya, 60 Minutes, and other international and domestic broadcasters.
AntiWar.com - Mitt Romney has focused his run for the presidency on the superior skills he developed as a successful businessman, asserting that he alone has the knowledge, the experience, and the personal grit needed to repair the U.S. economy. Let us accept for a moment that Romney’s preferred narrative is true, i.e., that he actually was a respectable and honorable businessman, not just a predatory capitalist who bought up failing companies so he could enrich himself by stripping them of their assets and putting their employees out of work.
American Conservative - The recent killing of 16 Egyptian military police by militants in Sinai, part of an unsuccessful attempted penetration of the nearby Israeli border using a captured armored personnel carrier, appears to have been carried out by jihadi groups from the north of the peninsula along with Palestinians infiltrated from Gaza. But is the accepted narrative true? For a number of years both Egypt and Israel have been having problems with Bedouin tribes in Sinai and across the border inside the Jewish state. The tribesmen, generally regarded as bandits, have carried out kidnappings, sabotage, and have killed Egyptian officials when the opportunity has arisen. Recently, the situation in Sinai has deteriorated due to a weakening of security in general as a consequence of the Arab Spring.
AntiWar.com - Does anyone remember Otto, the brain damaged ex-CIA assassin played so deliciously by Kevin Kline in A Fish Called Wanda? Otto cruised around London in a massive old Chrysler, driving on the right and forcing British drivers off the road while screaming that they were a**holes. Described by one reviewer as a walking id, Otto’s most famous line was “Oh, you English are so superior, aren’t you? Well, would you like to know what you’d be without us, the good ol’ US of A to protect you? I’ll tell you. The smallest f***king province in the Russian Empire, that’s what! If it wasn’t for us, you’d all be speaking German! Singing ‘Deutschland, Deutschland über alles’….”
New sanctions on the Islamic Republic stack the deck for war.
The American Conservative - Over the past two weeks there has been something like a competition between Republicans and Democrats to see who can do more for Israel by hyping Iran as a threat. Mitt Romney fired the first shot while speaking at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Reno, accusing the president of “undermining” Israel and citing the Islamic Republic as the world’s greatest threat. Barack Obama fired back with a public signing of the United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act, coupled with a leaked report that his national security adviser, Thomas Donilon, had briefed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the details of U.S. plans to attack Iran.
The American Conservative - Mitt Romney has just completed an overseas trip that featured missteps and bumper-sticker foreign-policy pronouncements. It was clearly intended to shine a light on his accomplishments as coordinator of the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics and to burnish his foreign-policy credentials. It did neither, but its secondary purpose, to raise money for his campaign, was somewhat more successful. Mitt hosted a $25,000 per couple fundraiser that raised $2 million while in London and followed up on that with a $50,000 per couple event in Israel that raised $1 million.
AntiWar.com - The shameful spectacle of American politicians trying to outdo each other in demonstrating their love for Israel played out again last week. The sparring began before the Olympic Games in London. Israel asked for a moment of silence at the opening ceremony to commemorate the 11 Israeli athletes who were murdered in Munich 40 years ago. President Obama obligingly endorsed the proposal and Romney followed, even though it was none of their business, but the British organizers turned it down. They also refused to provide special protection for Israeli athletes, arguing that the security was adequate for everyone involved in the games, which it was.
The American Conservative - The Washington Post is generally regarded as liberal on most issues but has promoted a neoconservative foreign policy since Fred Hiatt took over the editorial page in 2000. The Post has supported the Iraq war, the “Surges” in Iraq and Afghanistan, and drone warfare, while also pushing for a more aggressive US response to Iran, including the possible exercise of the military option. But even conditioned by the Post’s admittedly bellicose worldview, Friday’s lead editorial should be awarded some kind of prize for over-the-top journalism. It starts: “The bombing of a bus in Bulgaria filled with Israeli tourists on Wednesday underlines the grim fact that Iran is waging a war of terrorism.”
AntiWar.com - The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA) established a panel of judges (the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court) who were empowered to issue warrants to federal government organizations, including the National Security Agency, to enable them to listen in on the conversations of American citizens or residents who were speaking to foreign nationals overseas or between two foreigners if the communications were intercepted at a hub located in the United States.
The American Conservative - Israeli government claims that it does not spy on the United States are intended for the media and popular consumption. The reality is that Israel’s intelligence agencies target the United States intensively, particularly in pursuit of military and dual-use civilian technology. Among nations considered to be friendly to Washington, Israel leads all others in its active espionage directed against American companies and the Defense Department. It also dominates two commercial sectors that enable it to extend its reach inside America’s domestic infrastructure: airline and telecommunications security. Israel is believed to have the ability to monitor nearly all phone records originating in the United States, while numerous Israeli air-travel security companies are known to act as the local Mossad stations.
Anti-War.com - The principal function of government since 9/11, even if unintentional, has been to develop strategies to reduce individual liberties and transfer power to the government while not appearing to do so. Of course, neither George W. Bush nor Barack Obama actually explains it in those terms. They say instead that they are making Americans safer, but their actions belie their words, as today’s United States is if anything less safe, more authoritarian, and far poorer. Every expansion of the imperial mission overseas, which of course is being sold as a war against terrorists, has been accompanied by new legislation in the United States that has made all Americans less free. The most recent anti-terror legislation, the National Defense Authorization Act, enables the government to detain indefinitely any American citizen suspected of involvement in terrorism, without any due process and without any right to trial.
National Summit to Reassess the US-Israel "Special Relationship"
The public is invited to a nonpartisan symposium Nov. 8-9 that will examine the impact of the US-Israel relationship on Americans. Panels will include top military, diplomatic, intelligence, academic, governmental, and economic experts, as well as former Congressional representatives. Read more