Krystel von Kumberg graduated from Georgetown University with a Master’s degree in Security Studies (2020). Her Master’s thesis highlights the often overlooked and less explored pathway of individuals transitioning from neo-nazism to militant Islamism. Specifically, analyzing what spurs the ideational shift individuals traverse on their journey from one radical standpoint to another. She received her Bachelor’s degree in International Relations at Durham University in England (2018). She also attended the Cambridge Security Initiative in the summer of 2018, which further honed her interests in international security and the transnational components of extremist movements. She is currently pursuing an MA in history at Georgetown University. Her research focuses on the power of narratives, recruitment methods and radicalization.
Krystel has worked at the Counterterrorism Group (CTG) where she managed the NORTHCOM team of seven analysts, directed projects including Threat Assessments, Analysis Intelligence Reports, Security Briefs and Flash Reports. She was also involved in collaborating and communicating across CTG teams to address the most pertinent current threats. Moreover, performed WATCH duty to track the latest global threats as well as conduct cyber threat hunting to detect, flag and counter hate speech, extremist content and violent extremism on social media platforms and imageboard websites. She has monitored threats using OSINT and SOCMINT to collect information, track new developments and detect extremist rhetoric. She was a part of the Capitol Insurrection Task Force at CTG, and compiled a 25 page Detailed Analytical Report summarizing the situation at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 and actively monitored the situation collaborating with more than five other CTG teams. Simultaneously, she worked as a research and data analyst at Working Group on Children Recruited by Terrorist and Violent Extremist Groups (CRTG), and was involved in managing the Boko Haram research group, compiling a dataset on cases of violence against children by Boko Haram from 2014 to the present. She also led a team of six in the production of an analytical report on the increasingly transnational dangers of far-right extremist recruiters’ targeting of minors online and global recruitment pathways of youth and vulnerable children.
Krystel has also worked at the George Washington Program on Extremism conducting analysis on homegrown extremism and radicalization and has also worked as a columnist for two years at the Georgetown Security Studies Review, where she has written a variety of articles ranging from counterinsurgency in the North Caucasus to information warfare and Syria. Furthermore, Krystel has presented on counterterrorism at Columbia University and presented her paper on Russia’s role in enabling the far-right at the GOSECA Persuade and Coerce: (Dis)information and Security in Eurasia Conference at the University of Pittsburgh.
Specialist research areas:
Violent Extremism and Radicalization, Far-Right and Islamist Terrorism, Counterinsurgency and Russia.