Peace Picks November 3-7

  1. Kurdistan: From Pawn to Player | Monday, November 3rd | 10:00 – 11:00 | Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies | REGISTER TO ATTENDFalah Mustafa Bakir, head of the Department of Foreign Relations for the Kurdistan Regional Government, will discuss this topic. Note: The question and answer portion of this event will be off the record.
  2. From Hizbullah to the Islamic State | Monday, November 3rd | 3:00 – 4:30 | Carnegie Endowment for International Peace | REGISTER TO ATTEND | From humble beginnings in the 1980s, Hizbullah’s political clout and public perception have trended upward, thanks to a communications strategy that has adapted to changes in the local and regional environment. There will be a discussion of the recently released book, The Hizbullah Phenomenon: Politics and Communication by Lina Khatib, Dina Matar, and Atef Alshaer. Carnegie Middle East Center Director Khatib will join Carnegie’s Joseph Bahout to discuss how Hizbullah’s strategic communication has influenced other Islamist movements in the region, including the Islamic State. The speakers are Lina Khatib, the director of the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut and Joseph Bahout, a visiting scholar in the Middle East Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Moderating is Frederic Wehrey, senior associate in the Middle East Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
  3. The Challenges of Chemical Weapons Proliferation and Use | Tuesday, November 4th | 12:30 – 2:00 | Stimson Center| REGISTER TO ATTEND |  The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons is now 17 years old and the recipient of the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize “for its extensive efforts to eliminate chemical weapons”.  The OPCW, the United States and other member states explored new territory with the Syrian demilitarization effort, and are still digesting lessons learned. The Syrian government continues to use chemical weapons, and there are other outliers from the CWC and its obligations. Even so, the CWC has helped to strengthen norms against the use of chemical weapons. The panel will discuss chemical weapons proliferation, norm-building, and the challenges ahead.  The speakers are Ambassador Robert Mikulak, Andrew Weber, John Parachini, Amy Smithson and Michael Krepon.
  4. A Time To Act: Combating Sexual Violence in Syria and Iraq | Tuesday, November 4th | 10:00 – 1:00 | Elliott School of International Affairs | REGISTER TO ATTEND | The purpose of this event is to shed light on pressing issues regarding International Humanitarian Law, complex emergencies, and sexual violence, with a particular focus on the atrocities committed by ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Our goal is not only to bring these issues to the forefront of the public debate but also discuss potential solutions to address them. The speakers are Aisling Swaine, associate professor of practice of international affairs at George Washington, Sucharita S.K. Varanasi with Physicians for Human Rights, Stephen J. Rapp, Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues and Sunjeev Bery, advocacy director for Middle East and North Africa issues, Amnesty International USA
  5. The Islamic State and Beyond: US Military Strategy in the Middle East | Thursday, November 6th | 11:00 | Atlantic Council | REGISTER TO ATTEND | A conversation with General Lloyd J. Austin III who assumed his duties as commander of US Central Command on March 22, 2013. Prior to that, he served as the thirty-third vice chief of staff of the Army from January 2012 to March 2013. He also commanded US Forces – Iraq from September 2010 through the completion of Operation New Dawn in December 2011. Finally, from August 2009 to August 2010, he was assigned to the Pentagon as the director of the Joint Staff.
  6. Searching for Solutions to the Ebola Epidemic | Thursday, November 6th | 4:30 – 6:00 | REGISTER TO ATTNED | Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies| Pia Wanek, director of humanitarian assistance at Global Communities, and Dougbeh Chris Nyan, director of the secretariat for the Diaspora Liberian Emergency Response Task Force, will discuss the international response to the Ebola epidemic, health system capacity, and the broader implications on food security, economic development, and stability in the region.
  7. Turkey’s Syria Predicament: Finding a Way Forward | Thursday, November 6th | 5:40 – 7:00 | Turkish Policy Center | REGISTER TO ATTEND |  The ongoing civil war in Syria is having a significant impact on its neighbor Turkey: the UN estimates that over 1.6 million Syrian refugees have escaped to Turkey, a tragedy which has resulted in massive social and economic ramifications. Additionally, Turkey’s actions (or lack thereof) vis-à-vis fighters and weapons allegedly crossing its borders have come under scrutiny. Most recently, the developments in Kobane have resulted in Ankara drawing criticism from the international community, and an explosion of violence on Turkish streets, threatening the government’s peace process with its Kurdish population. How will these developments affect Turkey’s relations with the United States? Will there be a Turkish military incursion into Syria? How will Turkey’s standing in the region be affected? What is Turkey’s economic status quo, and how is it being impacted by the Syria crisis? What implications are there for next year’s elections? What is the fate of the Syrian refugees? Is the Kurdish-Turkish peace process stalled, and if so what is the way out? How can Turkey find a way forward with Kurds in neighboring Syria and Iraq? The panel discussion at the Goethe-Institut Washington will focus on developments pertaining to Turkey’s predicament regarding Syria. They will assess economic, political, and foreign policy developments in this context, with a prognosis of things to come.The speakers are Ambassador Robert Pearson, Former U.S. Ambassador to Turkey, Dr. Soner Cagaptay, from the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Dr. Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan from the IMF and University of Maryland, Dr. Denise Natali from the National Defense University and Cenk Sidar from Sidar Global Advisors.
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