National Security Analyst
Peter Bergen is CNN's national security analyst, a vice president at New America and professor of practice at Arizona State University.
Peter Bergen is CNN's national security analyst. Bergen is also a print and television journalist, documentary producer, professor, think tank executive and the author of five books, three of which were New York Times best-sellers and four of which The Washington Post named among the nonfiction books of the year. The books have been translated into 20 languages and have been turned into three documentaries. Two of the latter were nominated for Emmys, and one of them received the award.
He is a vice president at New America in Washington, where he directs the international security program; professor of practice at the School of Politics and Global Studies at Arizona State University, where he is the co-director of the Center on the Future of War; and a fellow at Fordham University's Center on National Security.
Bergen is on the editorial board of Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, the leading scholarly journal in the field, and has testified before congressional committees about Afghanistan, Pakistan, al Qaeda, drones, ISIS and other national security issues. He is a member of the Aspen Institute's Homeland Security Group, a contributing editor at Foreign Policy and writes a weekly column for CNN. He has held teaching positions at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.
In 2016, Bergen published "United States of Jihad: Investigating America's Homegrown Terrorists." The Washington Post named it one of the best nonfiction books of the year, and HBO adapted it for the documentary film "Homegrown: The Counter-Terror Dilemma."
His 2012 book, "Manhunt: The Ten-Year Search for bin Laden, from 9/11 to Abbottabad," was a New York Times best-seller. The book was translated into eight languages, and HBO produced a documentary based upon it, with Bergen as the executive producer. The film was in the Sundance Film 2013 competition and won the Emmy for best documentary in 2013. The Washington Post named "Manhunt" one of the best nonfiction books of 2012, and The Guardian cited it as one of the key books on Islamist extremism. The Sunday Times also named it best current affairs book of 2012. The book was awarded the Overseas Press Club of America's Cornelius Ryan Award for best nonfiction book of 2012 on international affairs. Bergen was awarded the Stephen E. Ambrose Oral History Award in 2014.
"The Longest War: The Enduring Conflict Between America and Al-Qaeda" was a New York Times best-seller in 2011. The book won the $30,000 Gold Prize for best book on the Middle East of 2011 from the Washington Institute. Bergen's previous book, "The Osama bin Laden I Know: An Oral History of al Qaeda's Leader," was named by The Washington Post as one of the best nonfiction books of 2006. The book was translated into French, Spanish and Polish, and CNN produced a two-hour documentary, "In the Footsteps of bin Laden," based upon it. Bergen was one of the producers of the film, which was named the best documentary of 2006 by the Society of Professional Journalists and was also an Emmy nominee.
Bergen is also the author of "Holy War, Inc.: Inside the Secret World of bin Laden" (2001). It was a New York Times best-seller, has been translated into 18 languages and was named one of the best nonfiction books of 2001 by The Washington Post. A documentary based on "Holy War, Inc." aired on National Geographic and was nominated for an Emmy in 2002.
Bergen was the recipient of the 2000 Leonard Silk Journalism Fellowship and was the Pew Journalist in Residence at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins in 2001 while writing "Holy War, Inc." He was a fellow at New York University's Center on Law and Security between 2003 and 2011.
Bergen has written about al Qaeda, Afghanistan, Pakistan, counterterrorism, homeland security, ISIS and countries around the Middle East for a range of American newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Foreign Affairs, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, Time, The Nation, The National Interest, Mother Jones, Newsweek, Washington Times and Vanity Fair.
His article on extraordinary rendition for Mother Jones was part of a package of stories nominated for a 2008 National Magazine Award. He has also written for newspapers and magazines around the world such as The Guardian, The Times, The Daily Telegraph, Prospect, El Mundo, La Repubblica, The National, Der Spiegel, Die Welt and Focus. And he has been a correspondent or producer for documentaries that have aired on National Geographic, Discovery and CNN. He was the editor of the South Asia Channel and the South Asia Daily, online publications of Foreign Policy magazine.
In 1997, for CNN, Bergen produced Osama bin Laden's first television interview in which the al Qaeda leader declared war against the United States for the first time to a Western audience. In 1994, Bergen won the Overseas Press Club's Edward R. Murrow Award for best foreign affairs documentary for the CNN program "Kingdom of Cocaine," which was also nominated for an Emmy.
Bergen co-produced the CNN documentary "Terror Nation," which traced the links between Afghanistan and the bombers who attacked the World Trade Center for the first time in 1993. The documentary, which was shot in Afghanistan during the civil war there and aired in 1994, concluded that the country would be the source of additional anti-Western terrorism.
From 1998 to 1999, Bergen was a correspondent-producer for CNN. He was program editor for CNN Impact, a co-production of CNN and Time, from 1997 to 1998. Previously he was a producer for CNN on a wide variety of international and US stories. From 1985 to 1990, he worked for ABC News in New York. In 1983, he traveled to Pakistan for the first time with two friends to make a documentary about the Afghan refugees fleeing the Soviet invasion. The subsequent documentary, "Refugees of Faith," was shown on Channel 4 in the UK.
Bergen has a degree in modern history from New College, Oxford University, where he received an Open Scholarship. Before then, he attended Ampleforth College.