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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

January 10, 2015

"Insights from the Kouachi brothers' crimes and lives"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"The attack Wednesday against the French satirical publication Charlie Hebdo that killed 12 people has understandably sparked a massive outpouring of support around the world for the publication and the wider issue of freedom of press and expression, alongside many condemnations of the attack by Muslims in Europe and around the world. This kind and intensity of reactions has happened before in other circumstances, such as Salman Rushdie’s work or the Danish cartoon controversy, in which the Western commitment to absolute freedom of expression conflicts with Islamic sensitivities about depictions of the Prophet Mohammad that are deemed offensive and blasphemous."

 

 

January 3, 2015

"Time for serious Palestinian leadership"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"The move by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to sign the documents to join the International Criminal Court (ICC), and give it jurisdiction to investigate allegations of Israeli and other war crimes in Palestine, should be seen as a positive development that brings international law into play in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Yet I find it difficult to be enthusiastic or optimistic about this move, due to the whimsical, personalized, uninstitutionalized and erratic manner in which Abbas and the current Palestinian leadership go about the business of managing statehood."

 

2014

December 31, 2014

"A moment to recall the corrosion that threatens Egypt"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"The real danger for Egypt is that continuing to rely on the military to mismanage the country will only aggravate existing conditions (poverty, social and income disparities, lack of jobs, mass informal employment, corruption) that ultimately led to the uprising and revolution that overthrew the Husni Mubarak regime four years ago."

 

 

December 27, 2014

"What to watch for at the UN Security Council"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"The two draft resolutions presented to the Council by Jordan and France capture very well the two prevailing attitudes to the work of the Council and the UN system as a whole: Does it reflect the will of the powerful, or the dictates of attainable justice for all as manifested in international law and conventions? The debate on these resolutions therefore is not only about how to achieve a fair and permanent peace in the land of Palestine and Israel through peaceful negotiations, rather than the nearly century-long legacy of violence by all sides, including Western big powers."

 

 

Wikimedia Commons

December 20, 2014

"How Fares the Global War on Terror?"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"The more the Global War On Terror continues, the greater seems to be the expansion and impact of the very terror groups it seeks to defeat, with ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra being the most recent examples. During the last few months that I have spent in the United States, I have wondered, with growing perplexity, why there is so little discussion here of why the GWOT seems only to have sparked the continued birth and expansion of international militant and terror groups across the Arab-African-Asian region."

 

 

Getty Images

December 3, 2014

"Egypt Is Sad, but Still Hard to Read"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"Egypt has always been impossible to describe. Now it is also impossible to analyze. The acquittal of former President Hosni Mubarak last weekend marks a symbolic nail in the coffin of the uprising and revolution that overthrew his government in February 2011. It is tempting but reckless to make definitive judgments about the meaning of the extraordinary stages of Egyptian political life since then."

 

 

Getty Images

November 29, 2014

"Obama's Dangerous Embrace of War"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"One of the surprising aspects of following U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East from within the United States, as I have done for several months now on an extended visit, is the peculiar gap between ordinary citizens’ sentiments and the fact that the United States is actively militarily engaged in several countries in the region. This dangerous trend means that the American president — it does not matter which party he is from, because they both act similarly irresponsibly abroad — can continue to use the country’s enormous capabilities to wage war around the world at will."

 

 

Getty Images

November 26, 2014

"Important Lessons from the Iran Negotiations"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"This week’s extension in the negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 is a welcomed jolt of composure and realism in a process that for years has been characterized by wild allegations, emotional retorts and intemperate actions. The decision to extend talks and keep negotiating to achieve a final agreement by next summer seems to cement the decision to deal with the accusations of Iran’s alleged desire to obtain a nuclear bomb as a technical issue that has a technical solution, rather than a continuation of the tendency of the United States and Israel, primarily, to treat Iran as a hapless colonial subject."

 

 

Getty Images

November 22, 2014

"The Cycle of Death Is No Surprise"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"The last few weeks’ escalating cycle of tensions, Israeli settlements expansions, murderous attacks by both Israelis and Palestinians, and reprisal demolitions of Palestinian homes may well escalate into something much more vicious and terrible, but it is hard to see what such an escalation would achieve. We have witnessed such cycles many times in the past 66 years, since Israel was created and the Palestinians experienced forced exile, refugeehood and occupation."

 

 

Getty Images

November 19, 2014.

"Only Active Citizens Can Save Their Precious States"

Op-Ed, Agence Global

By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative

"One of the most fascinating issues that defines the Arab world today is the precarious status of half a dozen countries that run the risk of collapsing or fragmenting into smaller units. Media speculation, politicians’ comments and serious scholarly deliberations all address the possibility that countries like Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Libya could fracture and give birth to smaller statelets that are largely based on ethnic, tribal or sectarian identities, much like Yugoslavia split up into several smaller countries in the 1990s."

 

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