Director, Arms & Security Program


William D. Hartung is the director of the Arms and Security Program at CIP and a senior adviser to the center's Security Assistance Monitor. He is the author of Prophets of War: Lockheed Martin and the Making of the Military-Industrial Complex (Nation Books, 2011) and the co-editor, with Miriam Pemberton, of Lessons from Iraq: Avoiding the Next War (Paradigm Press, 2008). His previous books include And Weapons for All (HarperCollins, 1995), a critique of U.S. arms sales policies from the Nixon through Clinton administrations.


From July 2007 through March 2011, Mr. Hartung was the director of the Arms and Security Initiative at the New America Foundation. Prior to that, he served as the director of the Arms Trade Resource Center at the World Policy Institute. He also worked as a speechwriter and policy analyst for New York State Attorney General Robert Abrams. Bill Hartung’s articles on security issues have appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Nation, and the World Policy Journal.


He has been a featured expert on national security issues on CBS 60 Minutes, NBC Nightly News, the PBS Newshour, CNN, Fox News, and scores of local, regional, and international radio outlets. He blogs for the Huffington Post, the Hill, and Medium.

Recent Publications

Transferring Arms to the UAE is not in U.S. Security Interests

by William Hartung

The Biden administration’s decision to approve a $23 billion package of F-35 combat aircraft, MQ-9 armed drones, and $10 billion in bombs and missiles to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) contradicts its pledge to make human rights and long-term U.S. interests the central factors in deciding which nations to supply with U.S. arms. The UAE is an unreliable partner that has fueled conflict, transferred U.S.-supplied weapons to extremist groups, and inflicted severe human rights abuses on its own population. Its conduct has done more harm than good with respect to U.S. security interests. Whatever pledges the UAE may make regarding its use of the U.S. weapons involved in the current package, the UAE’s record does not inspire confidence that it will abide by them.

Latest News

Military-Industrial Complex Exerts Powerful Influence on Biden’s Foreign Policy

William Hartung cited

Arms & Security Program

William Hartung's article in the Nation cited on "the role of major defense contractors, such as Raytheon, United Technologies and Lockheed-Martin, in lobbying Congress."

Execs at Top Pentagon Contractors Raked in $276.5 Million Last Year, Analysis Finds

William Hartung quoted

Arms and Security Program

"Congress and the administration should take a closer look at these costs," says report lead author William D. Hartung, "with an eye towards reducing them and freeing up funds for other needed purposes."

ANALYSIS-Unlike Trump, Biden arms export policy strikes balance on human rights, economics

William Hartung quoted

Arms and Security Program

On average, foreign military sales under Trump amounted to $57.5 billion per year, versus an average of $53.9 billion per year for the eight years under his predecessor Barack Obama, in 2020 dollars, according to Bill Hartung, director of the Arms and Security Program at the Center for International Policy think tank.

Arms Control TODAY The monthly journal on nonproliferation and global security.

William Hartung

Arms and Security Program

Support for a new ICBM is tied closely to the money to be made developing, building, deploying and maintaining it. Yet the American public would eliminate the weapon altogether, a recent poll shows.

At 100 Days, Grading Biden’s Progress Toward a More Responsible US Arms Trade Policy

by William Hartung

Arms & Security Program

"Early signs suggested that the Biden administration could be off to a promising start...Unfortunately, that early pace of public progress has not continued. And, on some issues, there are real reasons for concern. We again encourage the president’s team to take our initial recommendations to heart. As more officials are brought into the administration, many of whom are awaiting confirmation, much work is still needed to define a more responsible U.S. arms trade policy."