Lydia Khalil

Lydia Khalil has spent her career focusing on the intersection between governance and security—whether it be understanding the rationales behind terrorism and counterinsurgency, how to create governance systems that lead to functioning societies or the effects of youth and technological change that inevitably impact every generation.  Lydia focuses on the Middle East and the Arab world, and her current research examines how the rise of Middle Eastern youth will clash with the traditional power structures of the region. In her early twenties Lydia Khalil was appointed to the White House Office of Homeland Security as a graduate fellow. A year later, she served as a policy advisor for the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad from 2003-2004, where she worked closely with Iraqi officials on political negotiations and constitutional drafting. Since then, she has been a counterterrorism analyst for the New York Police Department, and currently holds numerous positions including her work as an International Affairs fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and a senior policy associate to the Project on Middle East Democracy.


Recent articles by Lydia Khalil:

"Youthquake in the Middle East" in The Australian

"Is Caution the Right U.S. Strategy?"

Khalil discusses the pros and cons of the U.S. response to Egypt in the New York Times.


"Egypt's Skype Ban About Politics" in Politico


"Rings of Terror" in Foreign Policy

"Al Queda's Six Degrees of Separation" in Foreign Policy


"Stop Minimizing Right-Wing Terror" in New York Daily News


"Behind the New U.S. Terror Cases" on Room for Debate, a New York Times blog


"Stability in Iraqi Kurdistan: Reality or Mirage?"  for the Brookings Institution


"Fox News' Surprising Constituency" in The Washington Post

Lydia Khalil writes that because of their national background, a surprising number of Arabs are able to relate to the viewpoints of Fox News.


"Iraq the Model?" in Small Wars Journal

Lydia Khalil writes that in the face of uncertainty in Afghanistan, President Obama should not forget the lessons learned in Iraq.


"The Threat of Homegrown Terrorism" in The Boston Globe

Lydia Khalil analyzes the degree to which homegrown terrorism can be considered a real threat.


"Is New York a Counterterrorism Model?" for The Council on Foreign Relations

New York City has developed a sophisticated local and global counterterrorism program since the 9/11 attacks, writes CFR's Lydia Khalil. Now the NYPD must determine from where the next terrorism threat will likely emerge and how best to deploy its resources to address it.


"Why 'The Wanted' is Outright Dangerous" in New York Daily News

Lydia Khalil reviews NBC's "The Wanted."


"Iran Today: 1979 Revolution Redux?" in Christian Science Monitor

Lydia Khalil argues, "Reformers hope to fulfill the work they began 30 years ago."


"An Army of One?" in Foreign Policy

Lydia Khalil writes that Obama cannot truly influence politics in the Middle East if "citizens have no meaningful way to participate in their governments."


"Nobody’s Client: The Reawakening of Iraqi Sovereignty" for The Lowy Institute

Lydia Khalil argues that domestic drivers in Iraq, rather than overhauled military or diplomatic strategy from without, will shape the nation's stability.


"Hope as A Counterterrorism Strategy?" in the Huffington Post

Lydia Khalil argues that the Obama administration's message of hope can be an effective part of counterterrorism strategy if "forcefully articulated through a gradual swell of grass roots support."



Videos and Media Appearances


"Digitial Age: Is the Net to Blame for Internet Terrorism"


"Iraq and Afghanistan- "A Comparative View"

Lowy Institute for International Policy


"Norwegian JIhad"

ABC Australia


"How New York City Cops Keep Tabs on Terrorists"

The Takeaway


"Counter terrorism expert Lydia Khalil talks to PM's Mark Colvin about the Afghanistan situation and the 'Afghan-Pakistan war'."

ABC Radio


"Iraq's Kurdish Elections"

Al Jazeera English