Iraq Under Abadi: Bridging Sectarian Divides in the Face of ISIS | Monday, April 13th | 9:00- 10:15 AM | American Enterprise Institute | REGISTER TO ATTEND | At the request of Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, US warplanes began airstrikes against ISIS positions in Tikrit on March 25. But ISIS isn’t the only challenge standing in the way of a stable, unified, democratic Iraq. How should the United States approach Iranian influence in Iraq? Can Iraq ever achieve a true power-sharing democracy in spite of the sectarian divides between Kurds, Sunnis, and Shi’ites? A day before Abadi meets with President Obama in Washington, join a panel discussion on the future of America’s strategic partnership in Iraq. Speakers include: Brian Katulis, Center for American Progress, Denise Natali, National Defense University and Douglas Ollivant, New America Foundation and Mantid International.
The Iran Nuclear Deal | Monday, April 13th 2015 | 11:00-1:30 PM | Carnegie Endowment for International Peace | REGISTER TO ATTEND| What are the short and long-term obstacles to finalizing and sustaining a nuclear deal with Iran, and how would a U.S.-Iran nuclear detente impact ongoing conflicts and long-standing alliances in the Middle East? The two panels will focus on the future of the deal, and the regional implications of the deal. Speakers include: Jessica Tuchman Mathews, George Perkovich, Karim Sadjadpour, Yezid Sayigh, Frederic Wehrey, Ali Vaez, and David Sanger
ISIS: The State of Terror| Tuesday, April 14th| 12:00-1:15 PM| New America | REGISTER TO ATTEND | In 2014, ISIS shocked the world with their brutality and the speed with which they took a large swath of Iraqi and Syrian territory. One year later, most countries, including the United States, are still trying to figure out what is driving this group and how best they can be defeated. J.M. Berger, an investigative journalist and non-resident fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World, brings a uniquely qualified perspective to the analysis of the challenges posed by ISIS’s rise. In ISIS: State of Terror, Berger and Jessica Stern, a lecturer on terrorism at Harvard University, draw upon intelligence sources, law enforcement officials, and their own groundbreaking research to explain the genesis, evolution, and implications of the Islamic State—and how we can fight it. The authors analyze the tools ISIS fighters use both to frighten innocent citizens and lure new soldiers—including the “ghoulish pornography” of their pro-jihadi videos, the seductive appeal of “jihadic chic,” and its startlingly effective social media expertise.
Setting the Stage for Peace in Syria | Tuesday, April 14th | 12:00-1:30 PM | The Atlantic Council | REGISTER TO ATTEND | After four years of conflict, the prospect of a stable Syria continues to be bleak, with a diplomatic solution nowhere in sight and military steps lacking in international support. In their report titled, Setting the Stage for Peace in Syria: The Case for a Syrian National Stabilization Force, authors Hof, Kodmani, and White present a new way forward – one that takes President Obama’s train and equip program to the next level forging a Syrian ground force which could constitute the core of the future Syrian Army.. How can this force change the dynamics of the conflict on the ground and how can the international community help build it? What other elements need to be in place to make this force an effective part of a broader resolution of the conflict? Speakers include: Ambassador Frederic C. HofSenior Fellow, Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, Atlantic Council, Bassma KodmaniExecutive Director The Arab Reform Initiative, and Jeffrey WhiteDefense Fellow The Washington Institute
The Iran Nuclear Negotiations: Critical Issues | Thursday, April 16 | 12:00-1:00 PM |The Heritage Foundation | REGISTER TO ATTEND | The nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5 plus 1 have entered a crucial phase ahead of the March 30 deadline for a framework agreement. examine some of the key issues involved in the negotiations and assess some of the pitfalls that must be avoided if an acceptable agreement is to be reached by the June 30th deadline for a final agreement. Speakers include, Fred Fleitz Senior Vice President for Policy and Programs, Center for Security Policy, Greg Jones Senior Researcher, Nonproliferation Policy Education Center and Henry Sokolski. Executive Director, Nonproliferation Policy Education Center.
Geopolitics of Energy Security in the Eastern Mediterranean | Wednesday, April 15 | 12:00-5:oo PM| American Security Project | REGISTER TO ATTEND| A half day conference examining the energy security challenges faced in the Eastern Mediterranean. Over the course of three panel discussions, the event will first examine the geopolitical importance of the region, focusing on the recent discovery of major natural gas fields in Israel.The next panel will look at the challenges of promoting energy cooperation throughout the Eastern Mediterranean, and will attempt to offer prescriptions for increasing energy security. The final panel will discuss the potential role that the US can play in the region in terms of investment opportunities and regional cooperation.
Assessing U.S. Sanctions: Impact, Effectiveness, Consequences | Thursday, April 16 | 8:45- 3:30 PM |Woodrow Wilson Center | REGISTER TO ATTEND | The unfolding crisis in Ukraine has the United States and its European allies struggling to find a way to respond to Russia’s actions and continuing violation of Ukrainian sovereignty. To date, that response is centered on calibrated but escalating sanctions against Russia. Once again, American reliance on sanctions as an essential foreign policy tool is on display. Past and current examples of sanctions, including Iran, South Africa, Cuba and others will provide important context for understanding the role that sanctions play in American statecraft.
Honeypots and Sticky Fingers: The Electronic Trap to Reveal Iran’s Illicit Cyber Network | Friday, April 17 | 2:00-5:00 PM | American Enterprise Institute | REGISTER TO ATTEND| The West has severely underestimated Iran’s cyberwarfare capabilities. Despite sanctions, the Islamic Republic has managed to build a sophisticated information technology (IT) infrastructure, and new intelligence indicates that the Iranian regime may be maintaining front companies in the West to obtain cyber technology. How can the United States and its allies enhance their security and combat Iran in cyberspace?. General Keith Alexander, former commander of US Cyber Command and former director of the National Security Agency, will deliver a keynote address.