The Center on National Security at Fordham Law (CNS) was established at Fordham University School of Law in September 2011. As a non-partisan, educational think tank, CNS is dedicated to providing thought leaders, policy makers and the public audience with the tools to better understand national security issues, with a particular focus on terrorism. Over the years, the Center has hosted a remarkably wide spectrum of opinion makers and officials and focused their joint attention on complex national security issues, leading to publications and policy recommendations. In addition to public educational programming, we also seek to reach a wide public audience and contribute to an informed citizenry through our policy research. Daily, our staff fields research questions from the national media and from policy makers on our two main research areas: ISIS and terrorism prosecutions. The Center’s research and reports are featured in domestic and international publications and broadcasts, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Reuters, Le Monde, NBC, CNN, NPR, and PBS.
The Center has hosted over eighty public events, both evening and day-long conferences, on national security and foreign policy topics such as: drones and targeted killings, surveillance law and policy, the evolving military, cyber security, international terrorism, US-Middle East policy, and the conflicts between the executive branch, the courts, and Congress. These programs facilitate open and frank dialogue on controversial and important policy issues, bringing these issues to the forefront of the national security debate and promoting public conversation that builds understanding and advocacy. To see our past events, click here!
The Center contributes to an informed citizenry by providing legal analysis and sociological data, notably on terrorism indictments in the United States. The Terrorism Trials Database is the country’s most comprehensive data and analysis project on federal terrorism prosecutions. Through database-enabled research, we monitor the progress of terrorism cases throughout the U.S. judicial system and delve into critical topics, such as radicalization trends, socio-economic factors, legal strategies, and sentencing issues for those accused of terrorism-related crimes. The Center's research has collaborated with the New York Times as well as numerous other news outlets in presenting this material to the public, most recently on the interactive feature, "ISIS in America" and "What the Americans Drawn to ISIS Had in Common."
The Center releases periodic Fact Sheets from the Terrorism Trials Database on pressing national security topics including information on terrorism prosecutions, foreign fighter cases, FBI informant cases, biographical details on terrorism defendants, and sentencing patterns. In June 2015, the Center released a comprehensive report, By the Numbers: ISIS Cases in the United States, providing an in-depth analysis and examination of alleged ISIS supporters and their motivations. In July 2016, the Center, in collaboration with the New York Times, released Case by Case: ISIS Prosecutions in the United States, updating its prior examination and providing new avenues of research and analysis.
The Center produces two electronic morning news services – The Soufan Group Morning Brief and the Stroz Friedberg Cyber Brief – that increasingly reach a critical mass of the national security establishment and the public. Our daily newsletter, The Soufan Group Morning Brief, covers the most important national security, terrorism, and foreign policy stories of the day. The Stroz Friedberg Cyber Brief, our weekly roundup of cyber news, highlights developments in cybersecurity law and policy. The curated briefs encourage a user-generated experience, where readers can process information quickly through CNS summaries or delve more deeply into topics of interest through linked news sources. To subscribe, click here!
Karen J. Greenberg
Karen J. Greenberg
Karen J. Greenberg is the Director of the Center on National Security, and a noted expert on national security, terrorism, and civil liberties. She is the author most recently of Rogue Justice: The Making of the Security State. She is also the author of The Least Worst Place: Guantanamo’s First 100 Days (2009), which was selected as one of the best books of 2009 by The Washington Post and Slate.com. She is co-editor with Joshua L. Dratel of The Enemy Combatant Papers: American Justice, the Courts, and the War on Terror (2008) and The Torture Papers: The Road to Abu Ghraib (2005); editor of the books The Torture Debate in America (2006) and Al Qaeda Now (2005); and editor of the Terrorist Trial Report Card, 2001–2011. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Nation, The National Interest, Mother Jones, TomDispatch.com, and on major news channels. She is a permanent member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Peter Bergen is a print and television journalist, author, documentary producer and vice president at New America where he directs the International Security and Fellows programs; a professor of practice at Arizona State University; a fellow at Fordham University’s Center on National Security and CNN’s national security analyst. 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. Peter Bergen is the author of United States of Jihad: Investigating America's Homegrown Terrorists.
Don Borelli is the Chief Operations Officer at The Soufan Group and a 25-year veteran of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, where he held high-profile leadership positions, including Assistant Special Agent in Charge in the New York Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF). As the Assistant Special Agent in Charge in the New York JTTF, Mr. Borelli also served as the New York International Terrorism Program Manager, where he was responsible for developing strategies to combat the terrorism threat to New York. Mr. Borelli oversaw hundreds of international terrorism investigations, including all extraterritorial investigations in Europe, Canada, and Africa.
Joshua L. Dratel is a New York-based lawyer. Mr. Dratel has been involved in some of the past three decades' most important cases involving national security, terrorism, international law, and civil liberties. Mr. Dratel is co-editor with Karen J. Greenberg of the prize-winning The Torture Papers: The Legal Road to Abu Ghraib (2005), and The Enemy Combatant Papers: American Justice, the Courts, and the War on Terror (2008). He is a past President of the New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (2005), as well as Co-Chair of the Amicus Curiae Committee of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
Thomas A. Durkin is the Distinguished Practitioner in Residence at Loyola University Chicago School of Law, where he serves as Co-Founder and Co-Director of its National Security and Civil Rights Program. Mr. Durkin has represented a considerable number of defendants in material support cases throughout the country, including United States v. Mohammed Hamzah Khan, No. 14 CR 564, and United States v. Daoud, 755 F.3d 479 (7th Cir., 2014); and presently has cases pending in the Northern District of Illinois, the Southern District of Indiana, the Northern District of Ohio, the Eastern District of Virginia, and the District of Maryland. He was also a member of the ACLU’s John Adams Project which provided civilian defense counsel in the first iteration of the 9/11 conspiracy case in the Military Commissions at Guantanamo Bay. Mr. Durkin is a recipient of the 2007 Frederick Douglass Human Rights Award from the Southern Center for Human Rights and the Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago’s Bill of Rights in Action Award for his work in preserving the Constitution in the representation of detainees at Guantanamo Bay.
Carol Dysinger is an Associate Professor at New York University's Tisch School of Arts. She directed the documentary "Camp Victory, Afghanistan," the first in her trilogy about Afghanistan post 9/11. Prior to directing docs, Prof. Dysinger edited many documentaries and features, and as a screenwriter she co-wrote several scripts for major motion picture studios. Her short films screened widely and won many awards, including the Student Academy Award for Best Dramatic, the Hugo Award. Currently she is an advisor at the Doc Lab at Sundance FIlm Institute -- and runs workshops around the world on hybrid filmmaking. She is the recipient of the David Payne Carter award for excellence in teaching.
Phil Hirschkorn, currently the Senior Producer at PBS NewsHour Weekend, is a New York-based journalist with more than 20 years experience in producing video and print pieces for national network broadcasts. Hirschkorn began covering al Qaeda in 1998, and has reported extensively on 9/11 and its aftermath and terrorism trials, including the East Africa embassy bombing cases, the Zacarias Moussaoui trial, the "enemy combatant" cases of Jose Padilla, Ali al-Marri, and Yaser Hamdi, "homegrown" cases ranging from the "Buffalo Six" to the "Newburgh Four," and the prosecutions of imams Suleiman Abu Ghaith and Abu Hamza el-Masri. Hirschkorn previously worked for CBS News, CNN, and Fox News. His articles on terrorism cases have appeared in Salon, Huffington Post, Just Security, Atlantic.com, and Politico. Hirschkorn was co-editor of the 2002 book, Covering Catastrophe: Broadcast Journalists Report September 11, a history of 9/11 told by 130 radio and television journalists.
Rachel Landry is a Fellow for Refugee Policy at the Center on National Security. Her research focuses on the intersections among refugee policy, criminal law, and humanitarian assistance. She was previously the Director of Special Projects & Development at CNS and a Special Assistant at the Council on Foreign Relations. She received her MSc in Refugee & Forced Migration Studies from the University of Oxford, where she was the George Washington University Shapiro Scholar, and her BA in international Relations and French Language and Literature from GWU’s Elliott School of International Affairs.
Michel Paradis currently serves as a senior attorney in the U.S. Department of Defense, Military Commissions Defense Organization. In that role, he is regularly appointed to represent detainees held at the U.S. Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He has argued numerous cases before the nation’s highest courts and written scholarly publications on the subjects of international humanitarian law, terrorism, and legal theory. He received his bachelor and law degrees from Fordham and his doctorate from Oxford. He teaches courses on the law of war at Georgetown and Columbia Law Schools. He is the author of a forthcoming book on war crimes trials in the Pacific during World War II, due out from Simon & Schuster in 2017.
Robert Windrem is an investigative producer and journalist for NBC News. He has worked as a producer for NBC in varying capacities for three decades. His work has focused on issues of international security, strategic policy, intelligence and terrorism. Mr. Windrem is the winner of more than 40 national journalism awards for his work in print, television, and online journalism, including a Columbia-duPont Award; mostly for his work on international security issues.