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"Intelligence Matters" is a weekly podcast about national security and policy hosted by former CIA acting director and CBS News national security contributor Michael Morell. Each week, users can listen to conversations between Morell and some of the world's leading intelligence and national security officials and experts. The podcast, which launched in 2017, was previously produced in partnership with The Cipher Brief, a website dedicated to national security topics.

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Former CIA Targeting Officer on the Post-9/11 Hunt for Terrorists

< 1 day ago · 36 minutes

In this episode of Intelligence Matters, host Michael Morell speaks with former CIA analyst and targeting officer Nada Bakos about the post-9/11 hunt for Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the low-level jihadist and eventual head of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, ISIS's predecessor organization. Morell and Bakos discuss the intense political pressure some analysts felt as they worked to identify links between Iraq and Al Qaeda in the immediate aftermath of the attacks. Bakos also describes how targeting officers employed tactical analysis in an effort to dismantle terror networks and the human intelligence that led to Zarqawi's demise.

Producer: Olivia Gazis

Intelligence Matters archive

June 12 | Nada Bakos: Former CIA targeting officer talks about post-9/11 hunt for terrorists | Transcript

June 5 | CIA's former chief of disguise Jonna Mendez on how to hide spies | Transcript

May 29 | Angela Stent: Here's how Russia is advancing a "post-West" order, says foreign policy expert | Transcript

May 22 | Tamir Pardo: Ex-Mossad director says cyber poses biggest threat to free world | Transcript

May 15 | Transcript: David Sanger talks with Michael Morell on "Intelligence Matters"

May 8 | Chris Costa: Spy Museum to offer newly dimensional look into world of espionage | Transcript

Apr 30 | Mike Pompeo: Nuclear talks with North Korea will be "bumpy" | Transcript

Apr 24 | Chris Darby:  On-Q-Tel (IQT), the strategic investment arm of the C.I.A. | Transcript

Apr 17 | Jamie Metzl: The "genetic revolution" could threaten national security | Transcript

Apr 10 | Meroe Park: Trump's first visit to the CIA | Transcript

Apr 3 | Glenn Gerstell: Surveillance and new challenges coming with 5G network | Transcript

Mar 27 | Eliot Cohen: A Building Crisis in American Foreign Policy | Transcript

Mar 20 | David Petraeus: Five "big ideas" to combat Islamic extremism | Transcript

Mar 13 | William Burns: Trump administration has "hollowed out" U.S. diplomacy" former top U.S. envoy says | Transcript

Mar 6 | David Charney: Insider threat expert on why people spy | Transcript

Feb 27 | Laura Holgate: The most precarious proliferation challenges faced by U.S. | Transcript

Feb 20 | Sue Mi Terry: Trump's rushed diplomacy with North Korea could trigger regional arms race | Transcript

Feb 13 | Jeh Johnson: There's no security crisis near the southern border | Transcript

Feb 6 | Vicki Huddleston: The view from Havana | Transcript

Jan 30 | Michael Rogers: Advice on deterring cyber attacks | Transcript

Jan 23 | David Cohen and Avril Haines - weigh merits of speaking out for past, present CIA leaders | Transcript

Jan 16 | Robert Pape: For recruiting, ISIS steals Western ideas | Transcript

Jan 9 |  Antony Blinken: Grading Trump's foreign policy | Transcript

Jan 2 | Lisa Monaco: Terror threat is "getting worse" says former homeland security adviser | Transcript

Dec 26 | Gary Hufbauer: Trade policy and national security - an expert view

Dec 19 | Nadia Schadlow: The national security strategy's lead author on its origins and impact | Transcript

Dec 12 | Glenn Gaffney: U.S. falling behind in new space race | Transcript

Dec 5 | John Miiller: NYPD counterterrorism chief on today's threats | Transcript

Nov 28 | Phil Reilly: Leaving Afghanistan would cause a greater problem | Transcript

Nov 21 | Michael Vickers: U.S. and China battle to control "industries of the future"  | Transcript

Nov 15 | Derek Maltz: Opioids and international crime

Nov 8 | Eric Edelman: U.S. might struggle to win or lose war with China | Transcript

Nov 1 |  David Cohen: Singapore Summit was "serious misstep"  | Transcript

Oct 24 | Norman Roule: Khashoggi case - former top U.S. intel official suggests it was a case of attempted rendition  | Transcript

Oct 17 | Karim Sadjadpour: Tehran may seek to wait out Trump administration

Oct 10 | James Lankford: Other countries will "test out" Russia's interference tactics | Transcript

Oct 3 | Chris Johnson on the future of the U.S.-China relationship

Sep 24 | Anthony Fauci on threats from epidemics

Sep 17 | Stephen Hadley: President Bush's former national security adviser on rebuilding U.S.-Russia ties

Sep 10 | Jake Sullivan: Former top Clinton, Biden adviser on challenges facing America | Transcript

Sep 3 | William Evanina: Country's top spy-catcher on espionage threats | Transcript

Aug 29 | Mark Warner on securing elections, combating disinformation: "We're not there yet" | Transcript

Aug 22 | Tillerson ushered in period of "extraordinary destructiveness" says former U.S. ambassador to UAE, Barbara Leaf

Aug 15 | New head of "DARPA for spies" warns that China is attracting top research talent: Stacey Dixon

Aug 8 | Former Colombian defense minister warns of security "backslide": Juan Carlos Pinzon

Aug 1 | Combating disinformation campaigns: Laura Rosenberger and Jamie Fly

Bonus: Michael Morell on why security clearances matter 

Jul 24 | Pakistan's former ambassador says his country must get out of the business of jihad: Husain Haqqani

Jul 17 | Adm. Winnefeld (Ret.) on top military threats the U.S. faces

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Jul 3 | Rep. Mike Quigley on U.S. election security

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Jun 19 | James Clapper on internal and external threats to the U.S.

Jun 12 | East Asia expert weighs in on Trump-Kim Jong Un summit outcome: Paul Heer

Jun 5 | Korea expert's advice to Trump: Listen to your advisers: Sue Mi Terry

May 29 | John McLaughlin on helping families of the fallen

May 22 | Undercover spy to public official: Rep. Will Hurd on global threats and domestic challenges

May 15 | The Iran nuclear deal: What in the world happens next?  James Jeffrey

May 8 | Negotiating with North Korea: The players, the stakes and the surprises: Joseph DeTrani

May 1 | The relaunch - with Gen. Michael Hayden