Adnan Tabatabai is co-founder and CEO of the Center for Applied Research in Partnership with the Orient (CARPO). As a Berlin-based political analyst on Iranian affairs, he is consulted by the German Federal Foreign Office, members of the German Bundestag, political foundations as well as journalists and authors. He writes analyses and commentaries on Iran for German and English media outlets. Tabatabai holds an assigned lectureship at the Heinrich Heine University of Duesseldorf and is an associated researcher for the INEF project “Peaceful Change and Violent Conflict—the Transformation of the Middle East and Western-Muslim relations.” He is a PhD candidate at the University Duisburg-Essen.
Ali Gharib is a New York-based journalist on U.S. foreign policy with a focus on the Middle East and Central Asia. His work has appeared at Inter Press Service, where he was the Deputy Washington Bureau Chief; the Buffalo Beast; Huffington Post; Mondoweiss; Right Web; and Alternet. He holds a Master's degree in Philosophy and Public Policy from the London School of Economics and Political Science. A proud Iranian-American and fluent Farsi speaker, Ali was born in California and raised in D.C.
Ali Reza Eshraghi is the Iran Projects Director at the Institute for War and Peace Reporting (IWPR) and a teaching fellow in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He was a senior editor at several of Iran's reformist dailies. During his more than 15-year career in journalism, he has published hundreds of articles and op-ed pieces in various Persian, Arabic and English media including the New York Times, CNN and Al Jazeera. Eshraghi is an alumnus of the Duke-UNC Rotary Center for International Studies in Peace and Conflict Resolution. Formerly, he was a visiting scholar at the UC Berkeley School of Journalism and The Institute of International Studies (IIS). He was also a research fellow at the Religion, Politics and Globalization Program at UC Berkeley. Eshraghi studied Political Science and Islamic Studies at Imam Sadiq University in Tehran.
Aurélie Daher received a PhD in political science from Sciences Po, Paris. She held a postdoctoral fellow position at the University of Oxford from 2010-2011 and a postdoctoral research associate position at Princeton University from 2012-2013. Her work focuses on Hezbollah, the Shiites, and Lebanese politics. A book based on her doctoral dissertation was published in February 2014 under the title Hezbollah, Mobilization and Power (Hezbollah, mobilisation et pouvoir, Paris, PUF, Collection "Proche-Orient", 482 p.) An English version, Hezbollah, Mobilization and Power, will be published at the end of 2015 by Hurst/Oxford University Press.
Charles Naas was Deputy Ambassador and Charge d'Affairs in Tehran during the initial stages of Iran's revolution. Preceding that he was Director of Iranian Affairs and served also in Pakistan, India, Turkey, Afghanistan, as the ME advisor at the US's UN delegation, and retired from The Policy Planning Staff.
Daniel Luban is a postdoctoral associate at Yale University. He holds a PhD in politics from the University of Chicago and was formerly a correspondent in the Washington bureau of Inter Press Service.
David Isenberg is an independent researcher and writer on U.S. military, foreign policy, and national and international security issues. He a senior analyst with the online geopolitical consultancy Wikistrat and is a U.S. Navy veteran. He is the author of Shadow Force: Private Security Contractors in Iraq. His blog, The PMSC Observer, focuses on private military and security contracting, a subject he has testified on to Congress.
Derek Davison is a Washington-based researcher and writer on international affairs and American politics. He has Master's degrees in Middle East Studies from the University of Chicago, where he specialized in Iranian history and policy, and in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University, where he studied American foreign policy and Russian/Cold War history. He previously worked in the Persian Gulf for The RAND Corporation.
Diana Ohlbaum is the owner of DLO Global LLC ( https://www.dloglobal.com/), an independent consulting firm providing legislative and political strategy for sustainable human security, and a board member of the Center for International Policy. In addition to conducting oversight of U.S. foreign assistance on Capitol Hill for nearly 20 years as a senior professional staff member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, she has managed post-conflict programs at USAID and directed policy and advocacy at InterAction. Dr. Ohlbaum holds a Ph.D. in political science from Johns Hopkins University and a B.A. in Russian studies from Amherst College. Follow her on Twitter: @dohlbaum
Djavad Salehi-Isfahani conducts research on the economics of the Middle East and is currently a professor of economics at Virginia Tech. He is a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institute and is also serving as the Dubai Initiative fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. This fall he is the Kuwait Foundation Visiting Scholar at the Belfer Center of Harvard Kennedy School. He has served on the Board of Trustees of the Economic Research Forum (2001-2006), a network of Middle East economists based in Cairo.
Eldar Mamedov has degrees from the University of Latvia and the Diplomatic School in Madrid, Spain. He has worked in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia and as a diplomat in Latvian embassies in Washington D.C. and Madrid. Since 2007, Mamedov has served as a political adviser for the social-democrats in the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament (EP) and is in charge of the EP delegations for inter-parliamentary relations with Iran, Iraq, the Arabian Peninsula, and Mashreq.
Eli Clifton reports on money in politics and US foreign policy. Eli previously reported for the American Independent News Network, ThinkProgress, and Inter Press Service.
Ellie Geranmayeh is a policy fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations based in London since October 2013. She focuses on European foreign policy in relation to Iran on the nuclear talks and wider regional issues.
Dr. Emile Nakhleh was a Senior Intelligence Service officer and Director of the Political Islam Strategic Analysis Program at the Central Intelligence Agency. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a Research Professor and Director of the Global and National Security Policy Institute at the University of New Mexico, and the author of A Necessary Engagement: Reinventing America’s Relations with the Muslim World and Bahrain: Political Development in a Modernizing State. He has written extensively on Middle East politics, political Islam, radical Sunni ideologies, and terrorism. His recent writings on terrorism and contemporary regional politics are posted on LobeLog.com (http://lobelog.com/author/emile-nakhleh/). Dr. Nakhleh received his BA from St. John’s University (MN), the MA from Georgetown University, and the Ph.D. from the American University. He and his wife live in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Esfandyar has spent the last 5 years working on projects related to "business diplomacy" between the West and Iran. He is the founder of the Europe-Iran Forum, the leading annual gathering for business, government and civil society leaders committed to Iran's economic development, and the executive editor Bourse & Bazaar, a digital business publication with a focus on Iran. He is a graduate of Columbia University.
Farideh Farhi is an Independent Scholar and Affiliate Graduate Faculty at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa. She has taught comparative politics at the University of Colorado, Boulder, University of Hawai'i, University of Tehran, and Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran. Her publications include States and Urban-Based Revolutions in Iran and Nicaragua (University of Illinois Press) and numerous articles and book chapters on compartative analyses of revolutions and Iranian politics. She has been a recipient of grants from the United States Institute of Peace and the Rockefeller Foundation and was most recently a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. She has also worked as a consultant for the World Bank and the International Crisis Group.
Fatemeh Aman has monitored and written on Iranian, Afghan and other Middle Eastern affairs for over 16 years. She has worked and published as a journalist and her writings have appeared in numerous publications, including Jane’s Islamic Affairs Analyst and Jane’s Intelligence Review.
François Nicoullaud's diplomatic career (1964 to 2005) brought him to New York, Chile, Berlin, Bombay, and finally to Budapest and Tehran as French ambassador. In the French Foreign Ministry he was in charge of cultural development as well as non-proliferation issues. He has also served in the Ministry of Interior as a diplomatic advisor and in the Ministry of Defense as First Assistant to the Minister. Since 2005, he has been active as a political analyst in international affairs, concentrating on Iran and the Middle East. He has also authored a book based on his experience entitled, “The Turban and the Rose” (Ramsey, Paris, 2006).
Giorgio Cafiero is the CEO and founder of Gulf State Analytics, a Washington, DC-based geopolitical risk consultancy. In addition to LobeLog, he also writes for The National Interest, Middle East Institute, and Al Monitor. From 2014-2015, Cafiero was an analyst at Kroll, an investigative due diligence consultancy. He received an M.A. in International Relations from the University of San Diego.
Articles by guest writers.
Hannah Gais is a New York-based writer with recent bylines in Pacific Standard, Al Jazeera America, First Things, U.S. News and World Report, and more. She is an audience development associate at The Baffler and associate digital editor at The Washington Spectator. Formerly, she was the assistant editor at the Foreign Policy Association.
Henry Johnson is a writer and analyst of Middle East affairs with a focus on Iranian foreign policy and politics. He is also senior political analyst for DRST Consulting.
Henry Precht, a retired Foreign Service Officer, worked mainly in the Middle East. His assignments included the Arab-Israel Desk after the 1967 war, four years in Tehran as political-military officer, in charge of the State Department Iran Desk during the revolution and hostage crisis, and two tours in Egypt – Alexandria in the 1960s and deputy ambassador in Cairo 1981-85. Precht speaks and writes on the region, and has published a book of short stories, A Diplomat’s Progress.
James A. Russell is an Associate Professor in the Department of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA, where he is teaching courses on Middle East security affairs, nuclear proliferation, terrorism, and national security strategy. His articles and commentaries have appeared in a wide variety of media and scholarly outlets around the world. His latest book is titled Innovation, Transformation and War: US Counterinsurgency Operations in Anbar and Ninewa Provinces, Iraq, 2005-2007 (Palo Alto: Stanford University Press, 2011). He is currently working on a book about learning in irregular war, focusing on US military operations in Afghanistan. Prior to arriving at NPS from 1988-2001, Mr. Russell held a variety of positions in the Office of the Assistant Secretary Defense for International Security Affairs, Near East South Asia, Department of Defense. During this period he traveled extensively in the Persian Gulf and Middle East working on various aspects of US security policy. He holds a Masters in Public and International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh and a Ph.D. in War Studies from the University of London. The views he expresses here are his own.
Jasmin Ramsey is an Iranian-born journalist based in Washington, DC.
Jim Lobe served for some 30 years as the Washington DC bureau chief for Inter Press Service and is best known for his coverage of U.S. foreign policy and the influence of the neoconservative movement.
John Feffer is the the editor of LobeLog and the director of Foreign Policy In Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies. He is also the author, most recently, of the dystopian novel Splinterlands (Dispatch Books). He is a former Open Society fellow, PanTech fellow, and Scoville fellow, and his articles have appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Review of Books, Salon, and many other publications.
Lara Friedman is the President of the Foundation for Middle East Peace. Prior to coming to FMEP, Lara was the Director of Policy and Government Relations at Americans for Peace Now, and before that she was a U.S. Foreign Service Officer, serving in Jerusalem, Washington, Tunis and Beirut. Lara is a leading authority on U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, with particular focus on the Israeli-Arab conflict, settlements and Jerusalem, and on the role of the U.S. Congress. She frequently briefs Members of Congress, Administration officials, and others in the foreign policy/national security community, and is regularly published in the U.S. and Israeli press. Lara works closely with Jerusalem expert Danny Seidemann and his NGO “Terrestrial Jerusalem,” participates in various Track II Israeli-Palestinian efforts, and is a non-resident fellow at the U.S./Middle East Project (USMEP). She holds a B.A. from the University of Arizona and a Master’s degree from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service, and speaks French, Spanish, Arabic and (rather poor) Italian.
Mark N. Katz, a professor of government and politics at George Mason University, is currently a visiting senior fellow at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs in Helsinki. Links to his recent articles can be found at www.marknkatz.com
Marsha B. Cohen is an analyst specializing in Israeli-Iranian relations and US foreign policy towards Iran and Israel. Her articles have been published by PBS/Frontline's Tehran Bureau. IPS, Alternet, Payvand and Global Dialogue. She earned her PhD in International Relations from Florida International University, and her BA in Political Philosophy from Hebrew University in Jerusalem.
Mitchell Plitnick is former vice president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace. He is the former director of the US Office of B’Tselem: The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, and was previously the director of education and policy for Jewish Voice for Peace. He is a widely published and respected policy analyst. Born in New York City, raised an Orthodox Jew and educated in Yeshiva, Mitchell grew up in an extremist environment that passionately supported the radical Israeli settler movement. His writing has appeared in the Jordan Times, Israel Insider, UN Observer, Middle East Report, Global Dialogue, San Francisco Chronicle, Die Blaetter Fuer Deutsche Und Internationale Politik, Outlook, and in a regular column for a time in Tikkun Magazine. He has been interviewed by various outlets including PBS News Hour, the O’Reilly Factor and CNBC Asia. Plitnick graduated with honors from UC Berkeley in Middle Eastern Studies and wrote his thesis on Israeli and Jewish historiography and earned his Masters Degree from the University of Maryland, College Park's School of Public Policy.
Naomi Dann is the media coordinator at Jewish Voice for Peace, and a writer focusing on US/Israel relations, the American Jewish community and the movement for Palestinian rights. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications including The Hill, The International Business Times, The Jewish Daily Forward, +972 Magazine, and Tikkun Magazine. She holds a BA in Peace and Justice Studies from Vassar College.
Narges Bajoghli is an advanced anthropology PhD candidate at New York University, where her research focuses on pro-regime cultural producers in Iran. Her research has been awarded national grants by the National Science Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, The Wenner Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, and the American Institute of Iranian Studies. She is also the director of a documentary about survivors of chemical warfare in Iran, The Skin That Burns, which has screened internationally. She has published articles on Iran in The Guardian, Middle East Research and Information Project (MERIP),The Huffington Post, and IranWire. She has also appeared as a guest commentator on Iranian politics on DemocracyNow!, NPR, BBC WorldService, BBC Persian, and HuffPost Live.
Omid Memarian is a journalist known for his news analysis and regular columns. He writes for the IPS (Inter Press Service) news agency, regularly contributes to the Daily Beast and has published op-ed pieces in The NY Times, The LA Times, The WSJ, The SF Chronicle and Time.com. A World Peace Fellow at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism from 2007-2009, he received Human Rights Watch's highest honor in 2005, the Human Rights Defender Award. He is the author of the Persian-language book Communication Skills (2004), and in 2013 he edited Sketches of Iran: A Glimpse from the Front Lines of Human Rights. Throughout his career, Memarian has often consulted for think tanks and research institutions regarding Iran policy, and continues to play an active role in various policy and advocacy circles on the topic. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Paul R. Pillar is Non-resident Senior Fellow at the Center for Security Studies of Georgetown University and an Associate Fellow of the Geneva Center for Security Policy. He retired in 2005 from a 28-year career in the U.S. intelligence community. His senior positions included National Intelligence Officer for the Near East and South Asia, Deputy Chief of the DCI Counterterrorist Center, and Executive Assistant to the Director of Central Intelligence. He is a Vietnam War veteran and a retired officer in the U.S. Army Reserve. Dr. Pillar's degrees are from Dartmouth College, Oxford University, and Princeton University. His books include Negotiating Peace (1983), Terrorism and U.S. Foreign Policy (2001), Intelligence and U.S. Foreign Policy (2011), and Why America Misunderstands the World (2016).
Peter Jenkins was a British career diplomat for 33 years, following studies at the Universities of Cambridge and Harvard. He served in Vienna (twice), Washington, Paris, Brasilia and Geneva. He specialized in global economic and security issues. His last assignment (2001-06) was that of UK Ambassador to the IAEA and UN (Vienna). Since 2006 he has represented the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership, advised the Director of IIASA and set up a partnership, The Ambassador Partnership llp, with former diplomatic colleagues, to offer the corporate sector dispute resolution and solutions to cross-border problems. He was an associate fellow of the Geneva Centre for Security Policy from 2010 to 2012. He writes and speaks on nuclear and trade policy issues.
Rana Allam is an advisor and editor with the International Civil Action Network (ICAN) and the Women Alliance for Security Leadership (WASL) organization. She has extensive knowledge of the political scene in the Middle East region with focus on Egypt. She is the former chief editor of Daily News Egypt (DNE) newspaper in Cairo, managing both the daily print paper as well as the website. She began her journalism career in 1995 and is currently a commentator on Middle East political affairs and human rights’ issues. Her work has appeared in Inter Press Service, IDN-InDepthNews, Sisterhood Mag and Daily News Egypt. She was profiled by the Nobel Women’s Initiative, and was a panel speaker in several international conferences including the UN Commission on the Status of Women, the Carter Center’s Human Rights Defenders Forum, the End Sexual Violence in Conflict Summit held in London, and the Arab Media Forum in Jordan.
Robert E. Hunter served as US ambassador to NATO (1993-98) and on the National Security Council staff throughout the Carter administration, first as Director of West European Affairs and then as Director of Middle East Affairs. In the last-named role, he was the White House representative at the Autonomy Talks for the West Bank and Gaza and developer of the Carter Doctrine for the Persian Gulf. He was Senior Advisor to the RAND Corporation from 1998 to 2011, and Director of the Center for Transatlantic Security Studies at the National Defense University, 2011-2012. He has been Chairman of the Council for a Community of Democracies since 2002 and is a member of the American Academy of Diplomacy.
Robert Kelley is a licensed professional nuclear and mechanical engineer in California. He spent his career in nuclear weapons development activities such as plutonium metallurgy, survivability of U.S. nuclear warheads in ABM intercepts and isotope separation by gas centrifuge and lasers. He later used these hands-on skills to lead intelligence analysis of foreign nuclear weapons systems for the U.S. government and then as a director at the International Atomic Energy Agency, particularly in weapons related non-proliferation analysis in Iraq, South Africa and Libya. Along the way, he has been a research reactor supervisor, a plutonium facility manager and director of the DOE Remote Sensing Laboratory at Nellis Air Force Base. He currently writes on non-proliferation for a number of publications and is an associate research fellow at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.
Robert Olson is Professor of Middle East history and politics at the University of Kentucky (Emeritus). He is the author of ten books of various aspects of Middle East history and politics. His major books are: The Siege of Mosul and Ottoman- Persian Relations: 1718-1743; The Emergence of Kurdish Nationalism and the Sheikh Said Rebellion: 1880-1925; Turkey's Relations with Iran, 1979-2004;The Kurdish Question and Turkish-Iranian Relations:From World I to 2000; Blood, Beliefs and Ballots: The Management of Kurdish Nationalism in Turkey, 2007-2000; The Kurdish Nationalist Movements in Turkey: 1980-2011; The Goat and the Butcher: Nationalism and State Formation in Kurdistan-Iraq since the Iraqi War War. He is the author of 75 referred research articles and 60 edited research articles. He was distinguished Professor of the University of Kentucky in 2000. He is married and lives in Lexington, Kentucky.
Robin, Head of Consulting at Manaar Energy (Dubai), is an expert on Middle East energy strategy and economics. He is the author of two books, The Myth of the Oil Crisis and Capturing Carbon, columnist on energy and environmental issues at The National, and comments widely on energy issues in the media, including the Financial Times, Foreign Policy, Atlantic, CNN, BBC, Bloomberg and others. He worked for a decade for Shell, concentrating on new business development in the Middle East, followed by six years with Dubai Holding and the Emirates National Oil Company. He is Advisor to the Berkeley Program on Middle East Entrepreneurship and Development, a member of the International Association for Energy Economics (IAEE) and the Association of International PetroleumNegotiators (AIPN), and Non-Resident Scholar at the Institute for Near-East and Gulf Military Analysis (INEGMA). He holds a first-class degree in Geology from the University of Cambridge, and speaks five languages including Arabic and Farsi.
Dr. Sara Vakhshouri is president of SVB Energy International, a Washington-based strategic energy consulting firm that provides critical advice on the global energy market to private companies, governments, think tanks, investment banks, and media organizations. An internationally recognized expert on the energy market and security, Dr. Vakhshouri has more than a decade of experience in global energy market studies, energy security and geopolitical risk. Dr. Vakhshouri has a PhD in energy security and Middle Eastern studies, an MA in business management (international marketing), and another MA in international relations. She has published articles in numerous journals including The Economist, Middle East Economic Survey, and Oil and Gas Journal. She is frequently quoted and has appeared on Bloomberg, BBC, Financial Times, Reuters, Al Jazeera, Energy Intelligence, Platts Energy TV and Voice of America on energy matters. She is the author of The Marketing and Sale of Iranian Export Crude Oil since the Islamic Revolution.
Shervin Malekzadeh is a Visiting Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania Middle East Center where he is working on a book manuscript on post-revolutionary schooling in Iran from the perspective of ordinary families and local officials tasked with educating “the New Islamic Citizen.” This fall, Shervin will begin a new position at Williams College as a Visiting Professor of Political Science. A former schoolteacher and a regular visitor to Iran, as well as an accidental participant in the 2009 Green Movement, his articles have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, The Guardian, and Folha de São Paulo, among others. Shervin’s research and publications are available at his academic website, www.shervinmalekzadeh.com.
Shireen T. Hunter is a Research Professor at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. Her latest publication is God On Our Side: Religion, Foreign Policy and International Affairs (Rowman & Littlefield, December 2016).
Sumitha Narayanan Kutty is an Associate Research Fellow at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) in Singapore. Her work focuses on India’s foreign and security policies toward the Middle East, particularly Iran. She has contributed to numerous publications and broadcast programs including The Washington Quarterly, Asia Policy, Bloomberg, CNBC, Channel News Asia, Business Standard, Mint, Al-Monitor and IranWire among others. Sumitha holds a master’s degree in security studies from Georgetown University, Washington DC and degrees in journalism from the Asian College of Journalism (ACJ) and St. Aloysius College in India. She has a working knowledge of Persian, Hindi, Malayalam and elementary skills in Arabic and Tamil.
Thomas W. Lippman is a Washington-based author and journalist who has written about Middle Eastern affairs and American foreign policy for more than four decades, specializing in Saudi Arabian affairs, U.S.- Saudi relations, and relations between the West and Islam. He is a former Middle East bureau chief of the Washington Post, and also served as that newspaper's oil and energy reporter. Throughout the 1990s, he covered foreign policy and national security for the Post, traveling frequently to Saudi Arabia and other countries in the Middle East. In 2003 he was the principal writer on the war in Iraq for Washingtonpost.com. Prior to his work in the Middle East, he covered the Vietnam war as the Washington Post's bureau chief in Saigon. Lippman has authored seven books about the Middle East and U.S. foreign policy. He is also an adjunct scholar at the Middle East Institute in Washington, where he serves as the principal media contact on Saudi Arabia and U.S. – Saudi relations.
Tom Engelhardt, co-founder of the American Empire Project and the author of The American Way of War: How Bush’s Wars Became Obama’s as well as The End of Victory Culture, runs the Nation Institute's TomDispatch.com. His latest book is The United States of Fear (Haymarket Books).
Tyler Cullis is a recent graduate of the Boston University School of Law, where he specialized in international law. His writings focus on U.S. foreign policy, the politics of the Middle East, and developments in international law. His work has been featured at CNN's Global Public Square, Muftah, Opinio Juris, and his personal blog, News From The Gutter. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wayne White is a former Deputy Director of the State Department's Middle East/South Asia Intelligence Office (INR/NESA). Earlier in the Foreign Service and later in the INR he served in Niger, Israel, Egypt, the Sinai and Iraq as an intelligence briefer to senior officials of many Middle East countries and as the State Department's representative to NATO Middle East Working Groups in Brussels. Now a Scholar with the Middle East Institute, Mr. White has written numerous articles, been cited in scores of publications, and made numerous TV and radio appearances.
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