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Rami Khouri

Rami Khouri

Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

Contact:
Email: rgkhouri@gmail.com

 

Experience

Rami George Khouri is a Palestinian-Jordanian and U.S. citizen whose family resides in Beirut, Amman, and Nazareth. He is director of the Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs at the American University of Beirut. His journalistic work includes writing books and an internationally syndicated column, and he also serves as editor at large of the Beirut-based Daily Star newspaper.

He spent the 2001–2002 academic year as a Nieman Journalism Fellow at Harvard University and was appointed a member of the Brookings Institution Task Force on US Relations with the Islamic World. He is a research associate at the Program on the Analysis and Resolution of Conflict at the Maxwell School,  Syracuse University (NY, USA), a Fellow of the Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs (Jerusalem), and a member of the Leadership Council of the Harvard University Divinity School. He also serves on the board of  the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown University.

He was executive editor of the Daily Star newspaper in 2003–2005, and before that had been editor-in-chief of the Jordan Times for seven years, when he also wrote for many years from Amman, Jordan for leading international publications, including the Financial Times, the Boston Globe, and the Washington Post. For 18 years he was general manager of Al Kutba, Publishers, in Amman, and in recent years served as a consultant to the Jordanian tourism ministry on biblical archaeological sites. He has hosted programs on archaeology, history, and current public affairs on Jordan Television and Radio Jordan. He often comments on Mideast issues in the international media and lectures frequently at conferences and universities throughout the world.

He has BA and MSc degrees respectively in political science and mass communications from Syracuse University

 

 

By Date

 

2015

Getty Images

June 27, 2015

"Signs of a more effective Palestinian strategy?"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"Efforts by non-governmental groups, including the Gaza flotilla and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, have generated some traction and support globally, but without significant measurable impact yet on Israeli decision-making and policies. This mirrors the condition of exile and dispersal that the Palestinians suffer, yet it is also a result of political dysfunction at a national level which dates back to the last 20 years or so, when the PNA effectively replaced the much more widely representative Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)..."

 

 

U.S. Department of State

June 20, 2015

"Good grief: ISIS cannot be fought with Facebook likes"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"Rarely has amateurism in American foreign policy in the Middle East been as glaring and shocking as it has been in the past year in relation to Washington’s policy on the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). In the United States during the past two weeks I have had the opportunity to follow more closely than usual news, analysis and political discussions about how the U.S. should respond to the threat of ISIS, and the experience has been frightening."

 

 

Getty Images

June 17, 2015

"To obey the law or to continue criminal actions?"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"What is the best way to achieve legitimate political goals that correspond at once to clear national interests, a domestic consensus, and international legitimacy? Several different events in recent days across the Middle East and North Africa region provide us with a fascinating menu of options to choose from; they suggest different levels of efficacy and legitimacy that any country or group of militants must assess in choosing their preferred means of action in the struggles they wage."

 

 

U.S. Department of State

June 13, 2015

"What prospects for Arab, American policy changes?"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"The respected Arab-American political activist and analyst Jim Zogby published a worthy article in Huffington Post this week entitled, “A smart new Washington project,” about the new "Middle East Strategy Task Force" (MEST) just launched by the Atlantic Council think tank. According to its co-chairs former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley, MEST aims to develop a long-term U.S. strategy to assist the Middle East achieve stability and prosperity."

 

 

Getty Images

June 10, 2015

"The US Supreme Court wisely upholds the law"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"One of the great battles that has been taking place within the United States in recent years has seen two separate issues meshed into a single confrontation: One is the powers of the Congress vs. the powers of the president in foreign policy decisions, and the second is whether the United States should stand squarely behind Israel in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict or pay the role of an impartial mediator that seeks a negotiated peace based on international law that meets the security interests of both sides."

 

 

Getty Images

June 8, 2015

"Lech Walesa on liberty and struggle"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

“Every lesson and experience adapts to its time and place, and some things exhaust themselves with time. I would give one piece of advice to activists today: act like good bacteria, and do not destroy the organism you live in. Leaders, for their part, must be like football coaches, not doing too much or too little, increasing pressure gradually, and not subjecting people to excess stress.”

 

 

Getty Images

June 3, 2015

"The spirit lives, in Gdansk and Beirut"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"Even in wealthy energy-producing states, where most material needs are met, many citizens are constrained by limits on their freedom of speech and collective political action outside the realm of what the government approves. In most of the poorer Arab world, several hundred million people suffer these same rights humiliations, along with serious material deficiencies in education, housing and health care quality, jobs and income, social safety nets, and abuse of power."

 

 

Getty Images

May 30, 2015

"ISIS attracts because Arab systems repel"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"We know from polls over the past decade that nearly half of all young people in the poorer Arab states see their government institutions as lacking credibility or even legitimacy, but most of them do not join ISIS or undertake an equally desperate action. The bottom line is that so many of these people see ISIS as a viable, if desperate, last alternative to their current life — or at least they use ISIS as a means of taunting and challenging their governments. ISIS offers them, in their perceptions, everything that they lack in their lives today — order, moral certitude, righteous living, a sense of community, a job, empowerment, basic rights, reliable access to basic human services and needs, social justice and equitable treatment of all citizens, and a higher purpose in life."

 

 

Getty Images

May 27, 2015

"If Joe Biden calls, you should duck or flee"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"The combination of American and Arab armies in action in recent years has not been very impressive or reassuring for ordinary Arab men and women who dearly seek to live a normal, plain, unexceptional life — a life that is not dominated by local and foreign attacks, terrorism, mass refugee flows, imploding governments, weakened economies, heightened sectarian violence, ethnic cleansing, endemic corruption, public decapitations and flogging, and, now, the emergence of ISIS and other extreme movements like it."

 

 

Creative Commons

May 23, 2015

"Is joint Arab militarism really the answer?"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"When Egyptian President Abdelfattah Sisi announced in late March after an Arab summit at Sharm el-Sheikh that leaders there had agreed on the principle of creating a “joint Arab military force” to respond to security threats in the region, the idea was greeted by considerable skepticism across much of the Arab world. Now, some two months later, and after chiefs-of-staff of Arab armed forces met in Egypt to discuss the matter further without announcing any of the results of their deliberations, the idea still elicits great doubts."

 

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