Moderator Announcement: Shifting Sands: Waning U.S. Influence in the Middle East

Moderator Announcement: Shifting Sands: Waning U.S. Influence in the Middle East

Washington, D.C. | | May 30, 2023 – We are proud to announce that Joyce Karam will moderate the foreign policy conversation at the upcoming ADC National Convention. The session will explore the changing geopolitical landscape of the Middle East, and will be held on Saturday, June 17th as part of the convention program

The session aims to provide a nuanced understanding of the geopolitical interests and strategies of the major powers operating in the Middle East, and how they are likely to impact the region in the future. It will examine American influence in the region, and the factors that have contributed to the growing presence of other global powers in the region.

Moderated by Al-Monitor Senior News Editor Joyce Karam, the session will feature Former Congressman Jim Moran, founder of Moran Global Strategies, Jon B. Alterman, Senior Vice President at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and Yasmine Amin-Zaki, Chairwoman of the Middle East Policy Council.

The ADC National Convention will be held from June 16th to the 18th, 2023, including the session on Middle East geopolitics on June 17thEarly Bird Registration rates are available for Convention packages which include access to all events, luncheons, dinners, panels, and receptions. Click here to register now !

Please note that hotel rooms are filling up fast, and attendees from out of town are encouraged to reserve rooms at the Crystal Gateway Marriott using the ADC special rates.

Speaker Bios:

Joyce Karam is senior news editor at Al-Monitor, the source of independent, original news and commentary about the Middle East. Joyce has covered the Middle East and US foreign policy for over two decades. She started her journalism career in Beirut, covering Lebanon after the civil war, and has carried out reporting assignments across the Middle East, including in the Gulf and Syria. Joyce is also an adjunct professor of political science at George Washington University. You can find her on Twitter @Joyce_Karam 

Former Congressman Jim Moran is the Founder of Moran Global Strategies. Jim represents clients in the areas of defense, government contracting, trade, foreign relations, economic development, renewable energy, technology, health, education, and finance among others. He represented the Northern Virginia communities of Arlington, Alexandria, and Fairfax County for 24 years in the United States Congress, where he was known for his bipartisan leadership and ability to resolve complex issues. He served on the Appropriations, Foreign Affairs, Banking, Housing and Finance, and Government Reform and Oversight committees during his 12 terms in the U.S. Congress. As a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee, he was chairman and ranking member of the Subcommittee on the Interior and Environment, a senior member on the Defense and Military Construction subcommittees: Foreign Operations, Labor, Health, and Human Services, and Ranking Member of the D.C. and Legislative Branch subcommittees.

Jim was a founder of the New Democrat Coalition (NDC), which is now the largest caucus in the U.S. Congress. The NDC is defined by its advocacy for international trade, support for small business, fiscal responsibility, and entrepreneurial innovation, especially in the tech industry. He also served as a member of the Steering and Policy Committee of the House Democratic Leadership.

Prior to joining Congress, Jim served as Mayor of the City of Alexandria, Va. (1985–1990); Senior Specialist, Budgetary, Fiscal Policy for the Library of Congress (1972–1974); and Acting Director of the Budget Office for Welfare, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Services for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (then HEW) (1968–1972).

Jon B. Alterman is a senior vice president, holds the Zbigniew Brzezinski Chair in Global Security and Geostrategy, and is director of the Middle East Program at CSIS. Prior to joining CSIS in 2002, he served as a member of the Policy Planning Staff at the U.S. Department of State and as a special assistant to the assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs, and from 2009-2019 he served as a member of the Chief of Naval Operations Executive Panel. In addition to his policy work, he often teaches Middle Eastern studies at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and the George Washington University. Earlier in his career, Alterman was a scholar at the U.S. Institute of Peace and at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and a legislative aide to Senator Daniel P. Moynihan (D-NY) responsible for foreign policy and defense. From 1993 to 1997, Alterman was an award-winning teacher at Harvard University, where he received his Ph.D. in history.

Alterman has lectured in more than 35 countries on five continents on subjects related to the Middle East and U.S. policy toward the region. He is the author or coauthor of four books on the Middle East and the editor of five more. In addition to his academic work, he is sought out as a consultant to business and government and is a frequent commentator in print, on radio, and on television. His opinion pieces have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, and other major publications. He is a former international affairs fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, where he is now a life member. He received his A.B. from Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs.

Yasmine Amin-Zaki is a Senior Legal Counsel at Bechtel Corporation. Formerly, she was a lawyer at ArentFox Schiff where she advised clients operating in the Middle East and North Africa on commercial transactions and arrangements, including joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, commercial agencies, and franchising agreements. She has assisted clients with structuring commercial contracts, distribution agreements, and services agreements and provides legal advice related to public international law, banking, policy, and political risk, economic development, and investment. In addition, she advised clients on entering emerging markets in post-conflict countries and countries in transition in the Middle East and Africa, with an emphasis on negotiating political, regulatory, and formation matters. She has advised clients seeking investments in the United Arab Emirates, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region and Middle Eastern and North African nations, including Syria, Iraq and Libya; numerous US- and UK-based companies on market entry, establishment and compliance in Iraq and the Kurdistan region, with political and risk analyses; and sovereign governments in public international law, policy, banking, investment, and transactional matters. Jasmine serves on the board of SEED for Change as the Kurdistan Board Member, is a media contributor on current events in the Middle East, and serves on the Iraqi Business Council. She holds a JD from Indiana University Maurer School of Law and a BA from University of Memphis (cum laude). Prior to attending law school, Jasmine worked at the United Nations as the Press Officer for the UN Mission to Iraq. She is fluent in English and Arabic.

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