Michael Waltz was a fellow in New America's International Security program. He is president of Metis Solutions a growing defense and intelligence contracting firm that provides strategic analysis, policy development, intelligence support, and foreign commercial development to U.S. Government and corporate customers worldwide. He is also a cofounder and partner in an international consulting firm, Askari Associates that provides strategic advice and consulting services to foreign governments and commercial entities, particularly in the Middle East and North Africa.
Prior to joining the private sector, Mike served as Vice President Cheney’s special advisor for South Asia and counterterrorism. His work in OVP culminated with Mike representing that office during President Bush’s strategic review of U.S. policy towards Afghanistan and Pakistan where he advocated realigning command and control, increasing resources, and modifying our counterterrorism posture in the region. Prior to his time in the White House, Mike was the director for Afghanistan policy responsible for shaping policy and providing recommendations to the under secretary of defense for policy and the secretary of defense. In the Pentagon, Mike also served in the office of the deputy assistant secretary of defense for counternarcotics, where he led the establishment of DoD’s funding, programs, and strategy for counter-narcotics activities in Afghanistan and South Asia.
In parallel with his civilian policy work, Mike commanded a U.S. Army Special Forces unit in the reserve component with multiple deployments to Afghanistan and the Middle East. There, Mike commanded a number of SOF teams in four provinces along the border region with Pakistan. In previous deployments, Mike worked closely with UAE, Czech, French, Kuwaiti and Australian Special Forces units in southern Afghanistan, in the Gulf region and other locales.
Mike regularly provides expert commentary on counterterrorism and regional issues for BBC World News, PBS Frontline, and the Voice of America. He also founded the Sumar Ghul Foundation which cares for the families of fallen Afghan National Army soldiers.
Mike is a distinguished military graduate of the Virginia Military Institute and currently resides in Alexandria, Va., with his daughter.
He is the author of the forthcoming book, Warrior Diplomat: A Green Beret's Battles from Washington to Afghanistan.