Wilson Center Experts
Stephen Tankel joined the faculty at American University last year as an assistant professor in the School of Public Affairs. He is also a non-resident scholar in the South Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and an adjunct staff member at the RAND Corporation.
Stephen’s research focuses on political and military affairs in South Asia, terrorism, and insurgency and he has conducted field research on conflicts and militancy in Algeria, India, Lebanon, Pakistan, and the Balkans. Prior to joining the faculty at American University, he was working on his doctorate in War Studies at King’s College London. His thesis, entitled “Peripheral Jihads,” focused on the evolution of jihadist groups that were extant but organizationally independent from al-Qaeda at the time of 9/11. While working on his thesis, Stephen also completed a book about the Pakistani militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which was published by Columbia University Press last summer. He is currently in the process of updating his thesis for publication and continues to publish widely on issues related to security in South Asia.
Stephen is working on two projects. The first examines the evolution of the indigenous jihadist movement in India specifically in terms of its ties to other countries in the region for which National Defense University sponsored a recent field research expedition to India and Bangladesh. The second assesses the nature of the militant threat to Pakistan and domestic barriers to action, for which Stephen is in the process of writing up elements of his research for publication.
Storming the World Stage: The Story of Lashkar-e-Taiba. New York, NY:Columbia University Press. 2011.