Charles V. Peña


Charles Peña is the former Director of Defense Policy Studies at the Cato Institute and has been a senior fellow at the Independent Institute, the George Washington University Homeland Security Policy Institute, and the Coalition for a Realistic Foreign Policy, as well as an advisor on the Straus Military Reform Project. Peña was also a foreign policy advisor for the 2008 Ron Paul Presidential Campaign. He has more than 25 years experience as a defense policy and program expert and senior manager, supporting the Department of Defense and Department of Homeland Security.

He is the author of the book Winning the Un-War: A New Strategy for the War on Terrorism, co-author of The Search for WMD: Non-Proliferation, Intelligence and Pre-emption in the New Security Environment, and co-author of Exiting Iraq: Why the U.S. Must End the Military Occupation and Renew the War against Al Qaeda. Peña was an on-air analyst for MSNBC television (as well as CNBC and NBC) and was an analyst for Global TV (Canada) and Channel One News (a PRIMEDIA Inc. company) during the Iraq war. He has appeared on “Hardball with Chris Matthews” on MSNBC, “The O’Reilly Factor” on Fox News, “News Night with Aaron Brown” on CNN, the “McLaughlin Group” on PBS, and "Newsnight" on the BBC. He has also appeared on NPR’s “Public Interest,” “To the Point,” “Morning Edition,” “The Diane Rehm Show,” and “The Radio Factor” with Bill O’Reilly.

His opinions have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Houston Chronicle, Philadelphia Inquirer, Boston Globe, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, San Diego Union-Tribune, Orange County Register,Sacramento Bee, St Louis Post-Dispatch, Orlando Sentinel, Newark Star-Ledger, Hartford Courant, Washington Times, Associated Press, Reuters, Christian Science Monitor, Investors Business Daily, Bloomberg News,Defense News, Defense Week, Space News, Aviation Week & Space Technology, Financial Times (UK), Agence France Presse (France), The Globe and Mail (Canada), and The Guardian (UK).

Peña received his M.A. in Security Policy Studies from the George Washington University and has a B.A. in Political Science from Claremont Men's College.