Fred Burton


Fred Burton is the author of Under Fire: The Untold Story of the Attack in Benghazi (St. Martin’s, 2013), with Samuel M. Katz. One of the world’s foremost experts on international terrorist organizations, Burton is a vice president at Stratfor, the private intelligence firm that Barron’s has called “the shadow CIA.” He is also the author of Chasing Shadows: A Special Agent’s Lifelong Hunt to Bring a Cold War Assassin to Justice (Palgrave Macmillan, April 2011), and Ghost: Confessions of a Counterterrorism Agent (Random House, 2008), which appeared on the New York Times bestseller list.

Prior to joining Stratfor, Burton served as a special agent and deputy chief of the counter-terrorism division of the Diplomatic Security Service (DSS), the arm of the U.S. State Department that protects embassy officials across the globe. In that capacity Burton tracked Libya-linked master terrorist Abu Nidal,  the international terrorist Carlos the Jackal, and directed the capture of Ramzi Yusef, architect of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, and pursued the assassins of world leaders like Yitzhak Rabin, Meir Kahane, and General Mohammed Zia-ul-Haq, the president of Pakistan

As a personal-security consultant to top corporate executives, Burton has developed a protective program that has been used by governments and CEOs of some of the world's leading corporations. A frequent guest on national news program on television and radio, Burton is a sought-after speaker on security and intelligence-related subjects.

PRAISE for Ghost

“With spy thriller suspense and the clarity of a police report, former special agent Burton’s State Department saga reads like a brewing-storm prequel to the current war on terror ... Of obvious interest to anyone with an eye on world affairs.... Most striking is the material’s relevance twenty years later; Burton’s clashes with Hezbollah in Beirut and prickly diplomacy with Iran could almost be pulled from present-day newspapers.” —Publishers Weekly

“The world of counter-terrorism is like that old jigsaw puzzle in the back of the closet—with many pieces missing and parts jumbled in from other puzzles, it becomes almost impossible to fit them all together. But in Ghost, Fred Burton manages to fit enough pieces together to give us a discerning look at that world.” —Eric L. Haney, author of Inside Delta Force and executive producer of "The Unit"

“Burton's memoir of fighting the defensive fight against the burgeoning terrorist threat in the 1980's and beyond is a revealing personal journal of the stress and boredom involved in putting the pieces of the puzzle together to obtain justice. Fred Burton was there, and so you will be as well.”

Adm. Bobby R. Inman, USN (Ret.), former Director, National Security Agency and Deputy Director, Central Intelligence Agency

K. Jansing Photography