Terrorism consultant Evan Kohlmann criticized over "The al-Qaeda Plan" video

Monday, August 04, 2008

Guest: Evan Kohlmann, a self-made international terrorism consultant. Evan wrote, produced and narrated "The al-Qaeda Plan," which was used as evidence in the Hamdan Trial.


Sitara Nieves

Comments [12]


Surfing the internet does not make you a Terrorism Expert!Check out his credentials,the only graduation you can find(and this is on the Wikipedia page that is a personal advertisement written by him or his lackeys)was from a prep school for Christ's sake!No military background,Diplomatic,spy services?He was just going to the the University of Pennsylvania in 2004 and it says nothing of graduation!This says so much about the dumbing down of America since the Reagan ,Fux "news" bastardization of our press and political system !

Nov. 13 2009 09:48 AM

This is a short yet amazing interview. These interviewers were able to do what lawyers have failed to do in all these trials - own Evan. He is no expert and as one person pointed out his facts are from second had sources. For those that think he is an expert they probably never heard of the case in which Bin Laden was convicted for the Kenya/Tanzania attacks in absentia based on RICO type laws. In that case, it was the first time that someone - a supposed Al Qaida operative explained what he believed to be the Al Qaida organization - and the explanation was nothing spectacular. Its been done and Evan is just a govt tool to explain things that cannot be fully explained.

While Al Qaida does exist on some level, it is hardly this vast conspiracy of networks and webs that Evan makes it out to be. Its easy for jurors to accept his testimony cause they want to, it makes them feel better.

Nov. 10 2009 10:06 PM
Orona Khalantovskaya

I've met Mr. Kohlmann. He claimed to be an expert on Chechnya. My mother is Chechen. He did not know the first thing about the place.

How can the US be fooled by an expert like him? A schoolchild there knows more than he does.

Sep. 09 2009 09:36 PM
Caroline F.

Evan Kohlmann is an extremely credible expert on al-Qaeda, particularly the group's use of the Internet to facilitate and support their objectives. The lack of respect shown by host John Hockenberry is astounding. I would think a talk show would conduct proper research on a guest's credentials before they conduct such a rude interview. The comments were completely unwarranted.

Jul. 15 2009 10:37 AM
Pointed Revelations

First, NEFA contributes very little that is new. Most of their site seems to come from PACER.

Second, the president of NEFA is Michelle Hayes, ex-wife of David Draper. The IRS is looking into this.

Third, Evan Kohlmann is no expert. He does not speak Arabic. He has never been to these places, his information is second hand. He follows in the footsteps of another self-proclaimed expert, Jean-Charles Brisard.

Nov. 02 2008 12:24 PM
Mata Hari

Incredibly poor form.

Words can't express how disappointing it was to listen to that excuse for an interview. Someone should TAKEAWAY Hockenberry's show. Disgraceful and embarrassing is what it was. He was rude, condescending, uninformed, off-base, and sophomoric. Who does he think he is to belittle someone with the credentials of an Evan Kohlmann. Google Kohlmann and you can clearly ascertain that he is a well respected terrorism expert whose knowledge is widely utilized by all branches of the US and UK governments. Not to mention, he is a patriot. Hockenberry should be shining his shoes.

To the Powers That Be: Take note - I will not be sending another penny to underwrite garbage like this. Bias such as this is nauseating and beneath you.

Aug. 06 2008 02:30 PM
David Draper

It's very unfortunate that interviewers don't have their producers vet their guest properly to avoid irrelevant comments and/or questions. In addition to Evan "notoriety for the last two weeks," He currently works as a senior investigator on behalf of the Nine Eleven Finding Answers (NEFA) Foundation and has served at various times as a private consultant in terrorism matters for the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Office of the High Representative (OHR) in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Australian Federal Police (AFP), the U.K. Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), and Scotland Yard's SO-15 Counter Terrorism Command. Mr. Kohlmann holds a degree in International Politics from the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service (Georgetown University), and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He is also the recipient of a certificate in Islamic studies from the Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (CMCU) at Georgetown University. Mr. Kohlmann has been a frequent expert guest on nationally televised news programs and is featured as an exclusive on-air terrorism analyst for NBC News.

Aug. 06 2008 11:51 AM
David Leonnig

I cannot get The Takeaway in Dallas, and so I listen a day late. What I heard this morning on my run was quite unfair to Evan Kohlmann. While he may not be the expert he claims to be, your treatment of him was as unjournalistic and as one-sided as any interview I have heard recently.

I especially took umbrage at your cracks about Mr. Kohlmann's age. As one who has experienced real age discrimination (at the other end), I suggest that you look at your audience and consider who might be listening. I would bet many are in the age group of Doogie Howser (today) and Evan Kohlmann.

Finally, I knew John Hockenberry when he worked at KLCC in Eugene, and have followed his career with interest. I am disappointed that John and Adaora have decided to let their personal bias so broadly into this story. Kohlmann may be a hack, but you are not Jay Leno or David Letterman. Leave this brand of wisecracking to them.

I still enjoy the program. I hope this is merely bad judgment, and not a trend.

Aug. 05 2008 04:33 PM
Ann Toth

This morning's interview of Evan Kohlman was appalling. Smug, rude, and uninformed, John Hockenberry clearly had not bothered to learn anything about his guest's background or achievements. He asked not a single substantive question, and instead spent the entire interview belittling the guest about his age. Then Udoji claimed expertise because she had travelled to the Middle East. It was ridiculous. Maybe there are substantive criticisms to be made of Mr. Kohlmann's work. I'll turn to a real news source to learn about them.

Aug. 04 2008 10:19 AM

I have to agree with Jim. Not a fan of the show but have been too lazy to turn it off in the mornings. This morning hit a new low. "Go back to grad school?" "Learn Arabic?" Aren't these things on the guest's short briefing bio? This is not the WNYC I've contributed to over the years, and it will be the one I'll think twice before contributing in the future.

Aug. 04 2008 08:09 AM

I think there was either extreme jealousy of the Doogie Hauser syndrome or just frankly massive hate of anyone that would dare help prosecute the terrorists at Gitmo.

"What are you doing next?" mis-TAKE AWAY. Like couldn't someone on that expert and egalitarian staff of interns have pulled up a bio on the guy?

Gene, I think you have to start putting your personal bias aside when doing interviews or at least hide them.

You see, this is the one of the weaknesses of your "live" format--you suffer the lack of preparation. Did you really not know that they use movielike presentations in Federal prosecutions?

Not a good day for Gene Hockenberry.

Aug. 04 2008 08:08 AM
Jim Low

I've had enough of your "hosts" treatment of guests on the show. Today's interview with Evan Kohlmann really reached a new low in rudeness and disrespect. It's bad enough that John can't keep himself from interrupting every visitor to the program, but to flagrantly belittle someone is just too much. Comments like "Dont' you think it's time to learn Arabic?" and "What's next, graduate school" are plainly aimed at humiliation, not illumination. I expect such tactics from right-wing radio and shock jocks, not public radio.


Aug. 04 2008 07:12 AM

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