The National Security Council (NSC) remains the pinnacle of national security decision-making more than 70 years after the National Security Act of 1947. The National Security Advisor and related NSC staff are the linchpins for providing the President and other senior officials with policy recommendations, options and courses of action to confront a range of complex national security challenges. At the same time, the NSC is arguably the least understood and most complex organization involved in the national security arena, since a complete understanding of the inner workings are difficult to discern without direct experience within it. This class will examine NSC organizational frameworks, bureaucratic processes and policy priorities adopted by a number of administrations--and will also compare and contrast the approaches that delivered desired results and those that led to unexpected outcomes. The course will involve simulations of national security policy decisions and guest speakers.
Javed Ali is a Towsley Policymaker in Residence at the Ford School during fall semester, 2018. Javed has over twenty years of professional experience in national security and intelligence issues in Washington, D.C. He began his federal government career in 2002 and worked in the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He also held senior roles while on joint duty assignments at the National Intelligence Council, the National Counterterrorism Center, and the National Security Council--where he completed a year of service from March 2017 to March 2018 as the Senior Director for Counterterrorism. Javed holds a BA in Political Science from the University of Michigan, a JD from the University of Detroit School of Law, and a MA in International Relations from American University .