Professor Sir David Omand
Former Director, GCHQ
Leading GCHQ and the UK’s counter-terrorism efforts – how successive Prime Ministers have tackled threats, and communicated them to the public
Professor Sir David Omand was the first UK Security and Intelligence Coordinator, and formerly director of GCHQ. Spending much of his career leading the UK’s national counter-terrorism strategy, he was directly responsible to the prime minister for homeland security. His book ‘How Spies Think: 10 Lessons in Intelligence’ is described as a “call to arms for more rational decision-making” and shares the spooks’ problem-solving skills. In this in-depth interview, Sir David argues the government has “failed to protect its citizens” against Covid-19 – after several warnings that a global pandemic was likely – and warns we now have “years of great disturbance” ahead; blames “disinformation, conspiracy theorists and social giants” for encouraging division and “creating a fundamentally fragmented society;” and recalls the pressure of making judgements then delivering difficult news to the PM – including giving the order to “ready the fleet” after warning Margaret Thatcher that Argentina was about to invade the Falkland Islands, and his ringside seat whilst Tony Blair dealt with 9/11 and the invasion of Iraq.
Former Editor-in-Chief and SVP, CNN Digital
5th December 2022
Leading a global team of 350 journalists – how CNN grew the world’s largest digital audience
Founder & CEO, The Bridge
24th November 2022
Bridging the gap—creating mutual opportunities for Asia and the West in TV and film production
Astronomer and science presenter
22nd November 2022
Inspiring the curious to explore the big questions—the great beginnings of the universe, planet Earth… and life itself.
President, Deseret News
10th November 2022
Founded in 1850 by the Mormon Church, now with 10 million readers—the longest-running news organization in the American West