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Mr. Douglas Farah is the International Assessment and Strategy Center’s (IASC) Senior Fellow, Financial Investigations and Transparency. He specializes in research, writing, and training on transnational criminal organizations and armed groups, and their effects on states and corruption; terrorism, terror finance, and proliferation; and, illicit financial flows, with a particular focus on the Western Hemisphere, Africa, and globalized networks. A veteran investigator with more than 25 years experience, Mr. Farah is a consultant on these and related issues to numerous U.S. Government departments, agencies, combatant commands, as well as private groups. He also applies his expertise on subjects such as drug trafficking and investigative journalism with leading academic centers in the United States and abroad, including the World Bank, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, National Endowment for Democracy, Consortium for the Study of Intelligence, and the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), where he is an Adjunct Fellow. Mr. Farah has testified numerous times before Congress, including the House Committees on Foreign Affairs; Financial Services; Oversight and Government Reform; Homeland Security; and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He is a member of the Princeton Project for National Security. In 1992, Mr. Farah joined the Washington Post as a staff correspondent and was named bureau chief for Central America and the Caribbean where, until 1997, he covered the drug wars in Colombia, Haiti, and Cuba, among other issues. From 1997 to 2000, he took on broader responsibilities at the Post as an international investigative reporter covering drug trafficking and organized crime, including the emergence of Russian organized crime groups in the western Hemisphere as well as the growth of Mexican drug cartels within the United States. In 2000, Farah again resumed the role of Post bureau chief, this time for West Africa, and was based in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. After breaking the story of al-Qaeda’s ties to “blood diamonds” and Liberia’s Charles Taylor, death threats compelled him to leave Africa in 2003. He remained with the Washington Post until early 2004, investigating radical Islamic groups and terror finance. Mr. Farah is the author of Blood from Stones: The Secret Financial Network of Terror (2004) and Merchant of Death: Money, Guns, Planes, and the Man Who Makes War Possible (2007). His work has also been published by The Financial Times, Foreign Policy, The New Republic, The Journal of International Security Affairs, National Defense University-PRISM, and the Air Force Institute for National Security Studies, among others, and he is featured frequently in major U.S. and international media such as the Economist, CNN, Reuters, BBC, The New York Times, NPR, Univision, and Newsweek. In 1980 Farah enrolled at the University of Kansas, at which time he began working for United Press International (UPI). In 1985, he was named UPI bureau chief in El Salvador, covering the civil war there. In 1987 he left UPI to freelance for The Washington Post, the Boston Globe, and US News & World Report. Mr. Farah holds a B.A. in Latin American studies and a B.S. in journalism.
*The above information may not be current. It was current at the time when the individual worked for SSI or was published by SSI.
Authored by Douglas Farah.
The emergence of new hybrid (state and nonstate) transnational criminal/terrorist franchises in Latin America operating under broad state protection now pose a tier-one security threat for the United States. Similar hybrid franchise models are developing in other parts of the world, making understanding the new dynamics an important factor in a broader national security context.