News + Media

Joel Brenner

In the News

October 3, 2019

Group of former intelligence community watchdogs call for protecting whistleblowers

Project on Government Oversight (POGO)

A group of former intelligence community inspectors general, including Joel Brenner, former inspector general at the National Security Agency, have signed an open letter calling on Congress to protect the whistleblower from retaliation and unwarranted attacks, while also supporting Atkinson’s handling of the situation.

Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s de facto leader, is ramping up efforts to regain his lost international standing, accepting some responsibility for the killing and vowing not to repeat his missteps.CreditCreditAmr Nabil/Associated Press

In the News

October 2, 2019

One year on, shadow of Khashoggi’s killing stalks Saudi prince

Ben HubbardThe New York Times

Wilhelm Fellow Hala Aldosari quoted: “Khashoggi is always going to be a stain on Mohammed bin Salman,” said Hala Aldosari, a Saudi scholar and fellow at the MIT Center for International Studies. “It is not going to go away.”

People watch a TV screening of a file footage for a news report on North Korea firing a missile that is believed to be launched from a submarine, in Seoul, South Korea, October 2, 2019. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji

In the News

October 1, 2019

North Korea fires ballistic missile, possibly from submarine, days before talks

Joyce Lee, Chang-Ran KimReuters

Vipin Narang quoted: “The risk is that testing such a system causes the US to walk away before this weekend, but Kim probably bet that the US is so invested in the talks taking place and making progress ... that the US won’t walk away.”

Analysis + Opinion

September 30, 2019

Japan’s whack-a-mole foreign policy

Japanese leaders have recently faced a furious barrage of foreign policy and national security challenges, some of their own making. Each has presented itself as if a game of whack-a-mole—some in which the unhidden and unpredictable hand of President Trump has been prominent.

Joel Brenner, former inspector general for the National Security Agency. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

In the News

September 30, 2019

Former NSA inspector: whistleblower does not need firsthand information

Meghna ChakrabartiWBUR On Point

Joel Brenner spoke with On Point about the whistleblower complaint, "I think everybody in the intelligence community is extremely nervous. The president's been attacking the community, explicitly."

Hala Aldosari

Analysis + Opinion

September 29, 2019

Its monarchy has left Saudi Arabia fragile and unbalanced

Hala Al Dosari

Jamal Khashoggi and I came from very different backgrounds, and this shaped our views on the politics of our Saudi homeland. There were many issues on which we didn’t agree. But we did share one crucial belief: that untrammeled power is always a danger—and particularly in the case of Saudi Arabia.

Joel Brenner

In the News

September 28, 2019

A brief history of intelligence whistleblowing

Greg MyreNPR

Joel Brenner interviewed by NPR: As inspector general at the NSA in the early 2000s, Joel Brenner says he was allowed to operate independently and tackle sensitive issues. But he says it's also important to look into the motives of the whistleblower.

Richard Samuels presenting at the CG briefing


September 27, 2019

CIS hosts consuls general meeting

The Center hosted Boston-area consuls general for a foreign policy briefing by our faculty and scholars. Local journalists were also invited. Seventeen consuls and officials attended the September 26 event at the Samberg conference center.

Joel Brenner

In the News

September 27, 2019

Joel Brenner: allegations that WH attempted to cover up Trump-Ukraine call records is "deeply troubling"


Joel Brenner, the former Inspector General of the NSA, said that if someone covered up information for personal gain during his time in the Bush Admin, they would've been "frog marched out of the building."

In this June 30, 2019, file photo, President Donald Trump meets with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at the border village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarized Zone, South Korea. After two years in the spotlight at the U.N. General Assembly, North Korea this year is mostly an afterthought. The nation warranted only a single, rehashed sentence in Trump’s address and has been largely overshadowed by other standoffs and scandals. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

In the News

September 25, 2019

From focus to forgotten: Why no N Korea spotlight at UN?

Foster KlugAP News

Vipin Narang quoted in AP: “Incentives align on both sides,” Narang said. “That makes me think the low-key mention of North Korea, and the emphasis on Iran, was designed to keep the window wide open for working-level talks.”