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Brian Michael Jenkins

A senior advisor to the president of the RAND Corporation and one of the world's leading authorities on terrorism, Jenkins founded the RAND Corporation's terrorism research program 30 years ago. He has written frequently on terrorism, and has served as an advisor to the federal government and the private sector on the subject.


Jenkins is a former Army officer who served with Special Forces in Vietnam and also a former deputy chairman of Kroll Associates. He served as a captain in the Green Berets in the Dominican Republic and later in Vietnam (1966-1970).


In 1996, was appointed by President Clinton to be a member of the White House Commission on Aviation Safety and Security. He has also served as an advisor to the National Commission on Terrorism (1999-2000) and in 2000 was appointed as a member of the U.S. Comptroller General's Advisory Board. Jenkins is a special advisor to the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and an advisor to the ICC's Commercial Crime Services.


Jenkins has authored many books, including Unconquerable Nation: Knowing Our Enemy, Strengthening Ourselves, International Terrorism: A New Mode of Conflict. He is the editor and coauthor of Terrorism and Personal Protection, coeditor and coauthor of "Aviation Terrorism and Security, and coauthor of The Fall of South Vietnam. His latest book, Will Terrorists Go Nuclear? was published in 2008.

The Terrorist Threat to the Sochi Olympics

Concern over security when the world's athletes gather for Olympic competition has persisted for decades, but the terrorist threat to next week's winter games in Sochi, Russia, appears to be more substantial than ever. From the Black September attacks on Israeli athletes in 1972, to...

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Should the United States End Assistance to Syria's Rebels?

The United States announced recently that it was suspending aid to the rebels fighting to overthrow the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. This comes amidst reports that other Western countries are now gradually withdrawing their military support to the rebel forces. Should the suspension...

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Limited U.S. Military Strikes Do Not Unseat Dug-in Dictators

Facing the possibility of U.S. military attack, Bashar al-Assad should worry about his long-term future. But based upon the historical record, any American military attack is more likely to be aimed at coercion than at threatening his immediate survival as president of Syria. The U.S....

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What Would al Qaeda's PowerPoints Say?

It seems unlikely that al Qaeda holds conference calls to do business, and they probably don't use PowerPoints. But for the sake of discussion, what if they did? And if they held one today, what would their presentation look like? To al Qaeda, there would...

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Crowd-sourcing our security

The investigation of the Boston Marathon bombing highlighted growing public participation in protecting communities against terrorism. People on the scene before the medical teams arrived were the real first responders, as ordinary citizens always are in such cases. Shocked by the attack, Bostonians were eager...

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When Armies Divide: Securing Nuclear Arsenals During Internal Upheavals

The Pentagon reportedly has secret plans to secure Pakistan's nuclear weapons against terrorists, a jihadist coup, or civil war. It also has conducted war games to explore how it might try to secure North Korea's nuclear arsenal in case of a coup or collapse of...

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The Invasion of Iraq: A Balance Sheet

Historically, wars were fought primarily for material gain: livestock, treasure, tribute, or territory. More recently, however, the profit motive for war has declined as life has become more precious and conquest and plunder have become less acceptable, although conflicts waged for control of diamonds...

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Generations of Terrorism

The terrorist plot uncovered recently by Jordanian authorities raises concerns about the resurgence of al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), the growing numbers of combat-experienced jihadists being generated by Syria's continuing civil war, and the future terrorist threat to the region. The plot itself envisioned a...

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