CNN National Security Analyst and Best-selling Author

Peter Bergen

About the Speaker

One of the few Westerners to interview Osama bin Laden, journalist Peter Bergen is the foremost authority on foreign policy, national security, and the new generation of terrorism. In addition to serving as CNN's terrorism analyst, he is the New York Times best-selling author of Holy War, Inc., which was translated into 18 languages. An expert in his field, Bergen serves as the director of the national security studies program at the New America Foundation in Washington DC, where he leads the Foundation's analysis of terrorism, counterinsurgency, South Asia’s geopolitics and other national security concerns. His latest book, Manhunt: The Ten Year Search for Bin Laden: From 9/11 to Abbottabad was released in May 2012.

His New York Times best-seller, The Longest War: the Enduring Conflict between America and Al-Qaeda, won the Gold Prize in the 2011 Washington Institute for Near East Policy’s annual book awards, which aims to reward outstanding writing and stimulate new contributions to the field of Middle East affairs. Writes the prize jury: "Peter Bergen draws on years of meticulous reporting, to uncover the thinking of al-Qaeda's top strategists and the pitched battles in Washington over US policy. The ten-year war against al-Qaeda, in Afghanistan and elsewhere, is now the longest in American history. Yet while terror groups remain a threat, Bergen's riveting account shows how American grit thwarted al-Qaeda's drive to become the acclaimed champion of Islamism — at a price Americans still ponder and debate." New York Times book reviewer Michiko Kakutani writes, "For readers interested in a highly informed, wide-angled, singlevolume briefing on the war on terror so far, The Longest War is clearly that essential book."

Kirkus Reviews named The Longest War among its "Best Non-Fiction Books for 2011,"" and the Times' Tom Ricks describes the book as "stunning."