Douglas Farah
Senior Fellow, Financial Investigations and Transparency

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Doug Farah is IASC’s Senior Fellow, Financial Investigations and Transparency. Farah specializes in research, writing and training on transnational criminal organizations and armed groups and their affects on states and corruption; terrorism, terror finance and proliferation; and, illicit financial flows, with a particular focus on the Western Hemisphere, Africa and globalized networks. A veteran investigator with more than 25 years experience, Farah is a consultant on these and related issues to numerous U.S. and European government departments, agencies, combatant commands, as well as the United Nations Criminal Investigative Unit, Bosnia. He also applies his expertise on subjects such as the Muslim Brotherhood, drug trafficking, and investigative journalism with leading academic centers in the US and abroad, and with NGO’s including the World Bank, Wilson Center, National Endowment for Democracy, US Peace Institute, Coalition for International Justice, Consortium for the Study of Intelligence, NEFA, Global Witness, CSIS, where he is an Adjunct Fellow.

Farah has appeared as an expert witness before the U.S. Congressional Bipartisan Terror Finance Working Group, crimes against humanity trials in The Hague and in the civil trial of survivors of the USS Cole v. Government of Sudan. Farah has testified numerous times before Congress including: the House Committees on Foreign Affairs; Financial Services; Oversight and Government Reform; and, Homeland Security; and, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Farah is a member of the Princeton Project for National Security.

In 1980 Farah enrolled at the University of Kansas, where he began working for United Press International. In 1985, after graduating with honors (B.A. in Latin American Studies and a B.S. in Journalism), he was named UPI bureau chief in El Salvador, covering the civil war there. In 1987 he left UPI to freelance for The Washington Post, the Boston Globe and US News & World Report. In 1988 he won the Sigma Delta Chi Distinguished Service Award for Foreign Correspondence for a Washington Post series on right-wing death squads in El Salvador.

In 1992, Farah joined the Washington Post as a staff correspondent and was promoted to bureau chief for Central American and the Caribbean where, until 1997, he covered the drug wars in Colombia, Haiti and Cuba, among other issues. From 1997 to 2000, Farah took on broader responsibilities at the Post as an international investigative reporter covering drug trafficking and organized crime, including the emergence of Russian organized crime groups in the western Hemisphere as well as the growth of Mexican drug cartels within the United States. In 2000, Farah again resumed the role of Post bureau chief, this time for West Africa, and was based in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. After breaking the story of al Qaeda’s ties to "blood diamonds" and Liberia’s Charles Taylor, death threats compelled Farah to leave Africa in 2003. He remained with the Washington Post until early 2004 investigating radical Islamic groups and terror finance.

Farah is the author of Blood from Stones: The Secret Financial Network of Terror (2004) and  Merchant of Death: Viktor Bout and the New World Order (2007).In addition to the aforementioned newspapers, Farah’s work has also been published by The Financial Times, Foreign Policy, The New Republic, The Journal of International Security Affairs, the Royal United Services Institute, National Defense University- PRISM and the Air Force Institute for National Security Studies, among others and he is featured frequently in major US and international media such as the Economist, CNN, Reuters, BBC, New York Times, NPR, Univision and Newsweek.

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