Peace picks October 14-17

I’ll be in Istanbul, but the week in DC will be a busy one after a welcome but gray three-day weekend:

  1. Conflict Prevention and Resolution: Ebola, Health Security, Conflict and Peacebuilding Tuesday 14 | 9:30 am – 11:00 am Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies; Rome Building 1619 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington DC REGISTER TO ATTEND Richard Garfield, emergency response and recovery team lead for Assessment, Surveillance, and Information Management at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Deborah Rosenblum, executive vice president of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, will discuss this topic. There will be a live webcast of this event.
  2. Boko Haram, ISIS and the Caliphate Today  Tuesday 14 | 9:30 am – 10:45 am Georgetown University, 37 St NW and O St NW, Washington DC, Edward B. Bunn, S.J. Intercultural Center, 270 REGISTER TO ATTEND ISIS in Iraq and Syria, and Boko Haram in northern Nigeria continue to use an overlapping language of political Islam and references to the caliphate and the Shariah. This event brings together Brookings fellow Shadi Hamid, visiting professor at Georgetown University Emad Shahin, and visiting assistant professor at Georgetown, Alex Thurston, to discuss these complex issues.
  3. ISIS, the Kurds and Turkey: A Messy Triangle Tuesday 14 | 10:00 am – 11:30 am Bipartisan Policy Center; 1225 I Street, Washington DC REGISTER TO ATTEND The Kurds have been on the front lines against ISIS for the better part of two years. During recent fighting in Kobani, Turkey has tried to block Syrian Kurdish refugees escaping ISIS from crossing the border, and fighters from the Kurdistan Workers’ Party from entering Syria to join the fight. Eric Edelman, former ambassador to Turkey, and members of BPC’s Turkey Initiative Henri Barkey and Svante Cornell will discuss the complicated relations between ISIS, the Kurds, and Turkey. They will also consider the role that the Kurds and Turkey might be able to play in confronting ISIS and what US policy towards each group should be.
  4. The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: Has the US Failed? Wednesday 15 | 9:30 am – 12:00 pm Middle East Policy Council; The Phoenix Park Hotel, 520 North Capitol St NW, Washington DC REGISTER TO ATTEND Speakers at this conference will include Daniel Kurtzer, former Ambassador to Israel and Egypt and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs; Matthew Duss, President of the Foundation for Middle East Peace; Natan Sachs, Fellow at the Brookings Institution; and Yousef Munayyer, Executive Director of the Jerusalem Fund and the Palestine Center. Omar Kader, Chairman of the Board at MEPC will moderate, and the discussant will be Thomas Mattair, Executive Director at MEPC.
  5. Fighting ISIS: The Future of American Foreign Policy in the Middle East Wednesday 15 | 3:00 pm – 5:00pm American University; 4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington DC EVENT WEBSITE Moderated by David Gregory of AU’s School of International Service. The panel will consist of David Ignatius, Washington Post; Susan Glasser, Politico; and Akbar Ahmed, Professor at SIS.
  6. Terrorist Financing Networks in the Middle East and South Asia: A Comparative Assessment Thursday 16 | 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Middle East Institute; 1761 N Street NW, Washington DC REGISTER TO ATTEND The ascent of the Islamic State has raised critical questions about how terrorist organizations are being financed. A comparison of terrorist financing networks in South Asia and the Middle East can offer insights into the differences and similarities in the funding of global terrorist efforts and how money is making its way into the hands of violent terrorist groups. Amit Kumar, fellow of the Center of National Policy at Georgetown University will discuss the methods, motivations, and efficacy of terrorist financing networks. He will also examine implications for policy, and will consider whether current countermeasures effectively prevent the funding of terrorist networks, or whether there are other strategies that can better curb this global threat. Marvin Weinbaum, scholar at MEI, will moderate.
  7. Parliamentary Elections 2014: Tunisia’s Political Landscape Thursday 16 | 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm Atlantic Council; 1030 15th St NW, Washington DC REGISTER TO ATTEND On October 26, Tunisians will cast their ballots to choose a parliament, marking the first major step out of the interim phase of the democratic transition. However questions remain as to the leading political parties’ ability to translate rhetoric into action and address serious security and economic challenges. To discuss this, and the importance of the elections to Tunisia’s progress, Atlantic Council will hold a conversation with representatives from the two main political parties in Tunisia: Zied Mhirsi of Nidaa Tounes and Osama Al-Saghir of Ennahda. They will offer insights about their respective parties’ platforms. Joining them will be Scott Mastic, director for Middle East and North Africa programs at the International Republican Institute. Karim Mezran, Senior Fellow at Atlantic Council will moderate.
  8. Stabilizing Iraq: Lessons for the Next Chapter Thursday 16 | 4:45 pm – 6:30 pm Center for Strategic and International Studies; 1616 Rhode Island Avenue NW, Washington DC REGISTER TO ATTEND Bob Schieffer, Chief Washington Correspondent at CBS News will host a discussion between Kathleen Hicks, Senior Vice President of CSIS, Stuart Bowen Jr. Senior Adviser at CSIS and former Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, and Karen DeYoung, Senior National Security Correspondent at The Washington Post.
  9. Can the Obama Administration’s ISIS Strategy Work? Friday 17 | 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm Hudson Institute; 1015 15th Street NW, Washington DC REGISTER TO ATTEND Criticism of the Obama administration’s Middle East strategy is growing, and many believe current actions to curb ISIS are not enough. Will a strategy limited to aerial bombardment and ancillary assistance to local fighters be sufficient to defeat ISIS, or are US military officials and regional allies arguing for ground troops correct? In either case, to what extent are longstanding, region-wide issues a fundamental obstacle to complete success against ISIS? To address these questions Hudson Institute will host a discussion with Lee Smith, Hudson Institute Senior Fellow, Andrew Tabler, Senior Fellow at the Washington Institute, Faysal Itani, Fellow at the Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, and Hussain Abdul-Hussain of the Kuwaiti al-Rai newspaper.
  10. A Citizens’ Coalition for Peace – US/Jordan Valley Sister Cities Friday 17 | 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars; 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington DC REGISTER TO ATTEND  Eco Peace/Friends of the Earth Middle East’s Good Water Neighbors (GWN) project has brought together Palestinians, Israelis, and Jordanians to cooperate over trans-boundary water resources and jointly advance sustainable development in the region, notably in the Lower Jordan Valley. The project has led to common problem solving and peace building among cross-border communities, even in the midst of conflict. EcoPeace/Friends of the Earth Middle East has recently worked to create sister city partnerships between American cities and the partnering communities of the GWN project. These will build on the previous successes of GWN to create and empower a broad, international citizen coalition for peace in the region. The Wilson Center will host a discussion on environmental peace-building, the mutual benefits of cross-border cooperation in the midst of conflict, and the role of American citizen diplomats in Middle East grassroots peace-making. The event will feature presentations by the organizations involved in building these international partnerships and a panel discussion with mayors from Jordanian, Israeli, and Palestinian communities in the Lower Jordan Valley.
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