Ambassador (Ret.) Paul Bremer III was the keynote speaker at a special seminar “America, Still the Indispensable Nation”, held at the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies on January 15, 2015. Mr. Bremer's diplomatic service spanned almost 40 years under eight presidents. During his tours in Washington, Bremer was Special Assistant to six Secretaries of State including service as Henry Kissinger's Chief of Staff. His overseas assignments included Afghanistan, Malawi, and Norway. President Reagan appointed him Ambassador to the Netherlands (1983-86) and then Ambassador at Large for Counter Terrorism (1986-89). After leaving government service, Bremer was Managing Director of Kissinger Associates, a strategic consulting firm headed by the former Secretary of State and subsequently Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Marsh Crisis Consulting Company, a firm providing crisis management advice and training to corporate boards and CEOs. A recognized expert in counter terrorism, in 1999 Bremer was appointed Chairman of the Bipartisan National Commission on Terrorism. The Commission reported to President Clinton in 2000 that the United States faced a growing threat from Islamic extremism. After 9/11, President Bush appointed Bremer to the President's Homeland Security Advisory Commission. In 2003 the president recalled Bremer to government service as Presidential Envoy to Iraq charged with beginning the country's political and economic reconstruction. Bremer's best - selling book, My Year in Iraq: The Struggle to Build a Future of Hope, was published in 2006. Bremer has received numerous awards for his public service. In 2004, President Bush awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian award, for his service in Iraq. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and serves on the Board of the RAND Corporation's Center for Middle East Public Policy. He is Chairman of the Sustainable Systems International, and a director of Alelo, a California - based technology firm. He also serves on the Boards of The Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East, the AMAR Foundation, the Chester Historical Foundation and the Fort at Number 4 in Charlestown, New Hampshire. Ambassador Bremer was the Founder and President of the Lincoln/ Douglass Scholarship Foundation, a Washington-based non-profit organization that provided high school scholarships to inner city youths. Bremer received his B.A. from Yale University, a CEP from the Institut D'Etudes Politiques of the University of Paris, and an MBA from Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration. He has an Honorary Doctor of Law degree from Ave Maria University. Opening remarks were presented by General (Ret.) Alfred Gray (Twenty-Ninth Commandant of the United States Marine Corps; Senior Fellow and Chairman of the Board of Regents, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies) and the event was moderated by Professor Yonah Alexander (Director, Inter-University Center for Terrorism Studies, and Senior Fellow, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies).
The latest Taliban school attack in Pakistan, the “lone wolf” café siege in Australia, and the beheading of Christian children by Islamic State members have once again demonstrated the brutalization of terrorism in “the name of God.” Despite the upsurge of contemporary theological-based threats, is religion still relevant in combating radicalization and extremism on national, regional, and global levels? Also, what are the “best-practice” strategies in minimizing religious confrontations and maximizing ecumenical inter-faith relations? A panel of academics, clergy, and former policy makers discuss these and related questions. The event was moderated by Professor Yonah Alexander (Director, Inter-University Center for Terrorism Studies, and Senior Fellow, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies). Panelists were Professor Robert Eisen (Professor of Religion and Judaic Studies and Chair of the Department of Religion at the George Washington University), Issam Michael Saliba (Senior Foreign Law Specialist for the Middle East and North Africa, Law Library of Congress), Dr. Sayyid M. Syeed (National Director of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) heading up its Office for Interfaith and Community Alliances in Washington, DC. He is one of the founders of the American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences (AJISS) and served as Editor and then Editor-in-Chief (1984-1994)), Rabbi Stuart Weinblatt (President of the Rabbinic Cabinet of the Jewish Federations of North America. He served as Director of Israel Policy and Advocacy for the Rabbinical Assembly (2009-2014). He is the rabbi of Congregation B’nai Tzedek in Potomac, Maryland), Tina Ramirez (President, Hardwired Inc. Former policy researcher at the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom and a foreign policy advisor for various members of the U.S. Congress where she helped found and direct the bi-partisan Congressional International Religious Freedom Caucus) and Dr. Maryann Cusimano Love (Associate Professor of International Relations in the Politics Department of the Catholic University of America. She is on the Core Group for the Department of State's working group on Religion and Foreign Policy and served as a Fellow at the Commission on International Religious Freedom). Professor Don Wallace, Jr. (Chairman, International Law Institute) made the closing remarks.
The public debate over the military's role in combating terrorism directed against the Islamic State and other adversaries is intensifying. From Washington to Istanbul to Canberra, policy makers are currently considering both defensive and offensive strategies for the short and long term security challenges. A distinguished panel of military, diplomatic, and academic experts discuss a broad range of topics including threat analysis, crisis management, and unilateral and collective tactical responses. General (Ret.) Alfred Gray (Twenty-Ninth Commandant of the United States Marine Corps; Senior Fellow and Chairman of the Board of Regents, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies) presented the opening remarks and the event was moderated by Professor Yonah Alexander (Director, Inter-University Center for Terrorism Studies, and Senior Fellow, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies). The keynote speaker was Brigadier General Richard C. Gross, U.S. Army (Legal Counsel to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The Panelists were Brigadier General (Ret.) David Reist (USMC Operation Iraqi Freedom, Deputy Commanding General for Governance and Economics in Anbar Province from February 2006-February 2007 and Vice President, Strategy and Planning Division, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies), Dr. Lawrence J. Korb (Senior Fellow at American Progress, Senior Advisor to the Center for Defense Information, and an adjunct professor at Georgetown University) and Dr. Alaa Abdalaziz (Political Counselor, Embassy of the Arab Republic of Egypt in the U.S. Former Charge d'affaires, Embassy of the Arab Republic of Egypt in Syria (2012-2014)). Professor Don Wallace, Jr. (Chairman, International Law Institute) made the closing remarks.
In light of the history of the Cold War and the current Ukraine crisis, can we draw practical lessons for future peace-making policies in Europe and their implications for global stability? The International Center for Terrorism Studies hosted a seminar on “The Ukraine Crisis: Quo Vadis?” on November 6, 2014. A panel of current and former government officials and academic experts offered political and strategic perspectives on a critical security concern for the international community. Michael S. Swetnam (CEO and Chairman, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies) made opening remarks and Professor Yonah Alexander (Director, Inter-University Center for Terrorism Studies, and Senior Fellow, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies) moderated the event. The panel included Yaroslav Brisiuck (Deputy Chief of Mission, Minister-Counselor, Embassy of Ukraine), Ian Brzezinski (Formerly Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Europe and NATO Policy and currently Resident Senior Fellow, Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security, Atlantic Council), and Klaus Botzet (Head of the Political, Security and Development Section, Delegation of the European Union to the United States of America). Dr. Patrick Murphy (Former U.S. government official, including in the Office of the Secretary of State, and currently Visiting Fellow, Inter-University Center for Legal Studies) provided commentary analysis and General (Ret.) Alfred Gray (Twenty-Ninth Commandant of the United States Marine Corps; Senior Fellow and Chairman of the Board of Regents, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies) made closing remarks.
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