Thomas E. Griffith

George Washington University


Thomas E. Griffith, Jr. is director of the Department of Defense National Security Studies Program at the Elliott School of International Affairs, George Washington University.

Before joining the Elliott School, Griffith had a distinguished 30-year career in the United States Air Force, serving most recently as dean of Faculty at the National War College.

During his previous flying assignments, he amassed over 2,000 hours in the F-4 and the F-15E and flew in the initial air strikes of Desert Storm. He was later shot down and evaded Iraqi forces for two days before being captured and held as a prisoner for the remainder of the war.

Among his other assignments, he also served in the Air Force Chief of Staff's Operations Group, as a special assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, as a group commander, and as the head of the Air Force's School of Advanced Air and Space Studies.

Griffith has published articles on targeting strategies and the use of force, the use of airpower in Afghanistan, and military innovation. He is the author of MacArthur's Airman: General George C. Kenney and the War in the Southwest Pacific. His research interests also include the use of private military forces and changes in modern warfare

Featured Work

SEP 2, 2009 Podcast

Joel Rosenthal Interviews Thomas Griffith: When Is Military Outsourcing Appropriate?

When is outsourcing appropriate? asks Griffith. We need to be thinking more deeply about what using military contractors means for the U.S. in terms ...