In the years since 9/11 the scope and nature of the global neo-jihadi threat to the West has changed radically, prompting reassessments from those following the threat. In his latest book Misunderstanding Terrorism, Marc Sageman examines the current threat and articulates a new model of how people become terrorists, which has strong implications for the fight against terrorists that go against the conventional wisdom.
New America welcomes Dr. Sageman for a discussion of what is driving the current generation of jihadists to become terrorists and how the U.S. should adapt to the threat. Marc Sageman is a Senior Fellow of the Foreign Policy Research Institute and the author of Misunderstanding Terrorism and two other critically acclaimed books: Understanding Terror Networks (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004) and Leaderless Jihad (UPP, 2007).
As an expert on Al Qaeda and related terrorist organizations, he has consulted with various branches of the U.S. government and worked at the U.S. Secret Service, the New York Police Department, and U.S. Army Intelligence. Sageman obtained an M.D. and a Ph.D. in sociology from New York University. After a tour as a flight surgeon in the U.S. Navy, he joined the Central Intelligence Agency in 1984. He spent a year on the Afghan Task Force then went to Islamabad from 1987 to 1989, where he ran the U.S. unilateral programs with the Afghan Mujahedin, and New Delhi from 1989-91. In 1991, he resigned from the agency to return to medicine. Since 1994, he has been in the private practice as a forensic psychiatrist and a consultant on terrorism.
Follow the discussion online using #SagemanNA and following @NewAmericaISP.
Misunderstanding Terrorism will be available for purchase by credit card or check.
Author, Misunderstanding Terrorism
Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Research Institute
David Sterman @Dsterms
Policy Analyst, International Security Program, New America