Coll is the president of the New America Foundation and a staff writer at the New Yorker.
Previously, he was managing editor of the Washington Post, and has been a reporter, foreign correspondent and editor at the paper since 1985.
His latest book, "The Bin Ladens: An Arabian Family in the American Century," takes a close look at the family of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, and how it rose to prominence in Saudi Arabia.
His five previous books are "The Deal of the Century" (1986), "The Taking of Getty Oil" (1987), "Eagle on the Street" (with David A. Vise, 1990), "On the Grand Trunk Road" (1994), and "Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001" (2004).
Some of the questions have been edited for length and clarity.