Distinguished Research Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute, Non-Resident Fellow at the Alliance for Securing Democracy.
Clint Watts is a Distinguished Research Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute and Non-Resident Fellow at the Alliance for Securing Democracy.
He is also a national security contributor for NBC News and MSNBC. Watts recently examined the rise of social media’s influence in his first book, Messing with The Enemy: Surviving in a Social Media World of Hackers, Terrorists, Russians and Fake News.
Watts’ research and writing focuses on terrorism, counterterrorism, the influence of social media, and Russian disinformation. His tracking of terrorist foreign fighters allowed him to predict the rise of the Islamic State over al Qaeda in 2014. From that year until 2016, he worked with a team to track and model the rise of Russian influence operations via social media leading up to the U.S. Presidential election. This research led him to testify before four different Senate committees in 2017 and 2018 regarding Russia’s information warfare campaign against the U.S. and the West. Today, Clint leads a team called Miburo that detects, disrupts and counters extremism and malign influence around the world.
Watts has served as a U.S. Army infantry officer, an FBI Special Agent, the Executive Officer of the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point (CTC), a consultant to the FBI’s Counter Terrorism Division (CTD) and National Security Branch (NSB), and an analyst supporting the U.S. intelligence community. His writing has appeared in a range of publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, The Daily Beast, Politico, Lawfare, War on The Rocks, and the Huffington Post.