Profiles Interviews

Former Iraq National Security Director Douglas A. Ollivant

Owen Johnson talks with retired Army colonel Douglas A. Ollivant.

Douglas Ollivant in suit and tie, a thoughtful expression

Photo: Donya Maleto

Douglas Ollivant

There’s a tendency for Americans to think that we have the primary agency. In fact, when you’re going to someone else’s country usually it’s really them that are in charge. We can help but if they want things to be settled they can settle them. If they really don’t want things to be settled, there’s probably nothing we can do.

IU alumnus Douglas A. Ollivant served two tours in the Iraq War; as operations officer, and as the head of the team that wrote the Baghdad Security Plan.

His last duty assignment was as Director for Iraq at the National Security Council during both the Bush and Obama administrations.

He is now a Senior National Security Studies Fellow at the New America Foundation.

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