Social media can be a powerful tool for cleared job seekers. Not only is it a way to stay up-to-date on the latest developments and news in the field, it also provides a means to network with noted experts and practitioners. Both can be critical for landing a job in this economy. One of the most popular social media services in the national security community is the microblogging web app Twitter. Every day hundreds of national security think-tankers, government workers, reporters, academics, and consultants use Twitter to discuss and debate the latest political and military developments around the world. If you are interested in joining the discussion, here are ten “must-follow” national security tweeters.
1) Spencer Ackerman – Also known as “Attackerman”, Ackerman is the editor of Danger Room, a popular blog on national security by Wired. His tweets range from discussions of graphic novels to informal commentary of important defense related news of the day.
2) Joshua Foust – A fellow at the American Security Project, Mr. Foust is a vocal critic of America’s strategy of counterinsurgency. He also often tweets about Central Asian security developments.
3) Daveed Gartenstein-Ross – Mr. Gartenstein-Ross is the Director of the Center For The Study Of Terrorist Radicalization at The Foundation For The Defense Of Democracies. His latest book, Bin Laden’s Legacy, just came out a few months ago. He is a noted expert on counterterrorism and often tweets about various terror groups in the Horn Of Africa.
4) Andrew Exum – Arguably the most influential national security thinker under 40, Dr. Exum is a former U.S. Army Ranger and current Fellow at the Center For A New American Security (CNAS). An expert on Hezbollah, Dr. Exum was also one of the foremost proponents of counterinsurgency in Iraq and Afghanistan.
5) Marc Lynch – Dr. Marc “Abu Aardvark” Lynch is an associate professor of political science and international relations at George Washington University. A noted expert on the Middle East and it’s relationship with information technology, Dr. Lynch writes for many online and offline publications including Foreign Policy. His tweets reflect his interest in the Arab world, with a strong focus on politics and the media.
6) Kevin Baron – Mr. Baron is a national security staff writer for National Journal, a mainstream publication on Washington politics. A reporter through and through, Mr. Baron’s tweets focus less on opinion and more on reporting from the various events he attends in the D.C. area.
7) Matt Armstrong – The former Executive Director of the U.S. Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy, Armstrong has been a staple in national security and global politics circles. His tweets focus on national security in the public square, with emphasis on media and public perception.
8) Jeff Emmanual – A combat journalist and Air Force vet, Emmanual has contributed to a variety of pubications, online and print, over the past decade. His tweets offer a public policy and political focus to national security issues.
9) William McCants – Dr. McCants is a faculty member at Johns Hopkins and an analyst at CNA. He is most known for his work on Islamic terrorism. In addition, he just published a book on the role of politics in ancient society foundation myths. On Twitter Dr. McCants often discusses radicalization and counterterrorism issues.
10) Small Wars Journal – Unlike the others on this list, @SmallWars is the RSS feed of the Small Wars Journal blog. Not just a regurgitation of the content on the blog, however, the account provides good one-stop shopping for national security news updates without commentary or personal opinion.
This list contains only a fraction of the huge number of smart and avid tweeters that are part of the national security community. If you are just getting started on Twitter, or even considering getting an account, use this list as a launching pad to find other Tweeters in your field.