Global Dialogue Community Discussion Groups are free and open to the public. Seating is limited for these casual small group meet ups. Please register.
Tennessee WAC Global Dialogue Community Discussion Groups
You Are Invited To Discuss
“The Middle East Muddle”
Monday, October 26, 2015 – 6:30-8:00 p.m.
Downtown Nashville – Frothy Monkey (Confirmed)
235 5th Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37219 Map Link
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The challenges for American foreign policy in the Middle East have always been difficult. But in the last five years the traditional and emerging conflicts have gone from complex to almost indecipherable. The Palestine-Israel conflict, Iranian hegemony across the “Shia Crescent,” the threat of ISIS, Russian intervention in the Syrian civil war, a more muscular Saudi Arabian approach to problem solving like the Yemen campaign, and more. Not only are these and other conflicts and challenges difficult to sort through on their own, but when you consider they are interrelated it becomes all the cloudy. This month’s Global Dialogue discussion group will seek to provide some transparency to the haze. Join your friends and colleauges for a casual conversation about the “Middle East Muddle.” Share your thoughts on what is happening in this troubled part of the world and where America’s interests lie in a region that has become front and center in the daily global news.
THIS EVENT IS FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. You do not have to print out EventBrite tickets to attend but please RSVP so we know to expect you. Thanks! (And please invite your friends to this meet up.)
Global Dialogue sessions are informal, salon-like gatherings held in areas convenient to the participants — downtown coffee shops, library meeting rooms, classrooms at colleges and schools. Participants review materials assembled on the www.TNWAC.org web site in advance of the session to be prepared to engage in conversation with their neighbors and colleagues. Sessions are facilitated by a group leader, and may include a specialist to provided background and context, but the Global Dialogue sessions will ensure everyone gets to share their views of the issues.
PREPARE FOR THE DISCUSSION – REVIEW THESE MATERIALS
KEY READS – PREPARATION – READ FOUR ARTICLES
1 – Readings from the Council on Foreign Relations Topic Area – Middle East/North Africa (a potpourri of current issues in the region) [LINK]
2 – “Russia’s New Middle East Great Game,” Middle East Institute, Oct 5, 2015 [LINK]
3 – “Lessons from America’s Continuing Misadventures in the Middle East” (Speech) – Amb Chas Freeman – Middle East Policy Council – Oct 14, 2015 [LINK]
4 – “Containing the Islamic State” – Middle East Policy (Journal) – Fall 2015 [LINK]
5 – “Toward a Third Intifada, or the New Normal?” – Commentary MEPC – Oct 15, 2015 [LINK]
6 – “Gulf Roundtable: Where Do We Go From Here? The World After the Iran Deal” – CSIS Middle East – Oct 20, 2015 [LINK]
6 – Browse the latest news on Middle East developments and/or follow @TNWAC on Twitter #TNWACmideast.
THAT’S ALL you need to prepare for our discussion but this topic is rich in materials to review. Check below for more.
KEY QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION – THESE WILL GUIDE OUR CONVERSATION
WORK IN PROGRESS – CHECK BACK
GLOBAL DIALOGUE GROUND RULES
1 – Mutual respect. We can disagree without being disagreeable.
2 – Everyone is involved. There is a facilitator to launch the conversation but the event is designed for all participants to share their views.
3 – Let’s seek fact based conversations. Let’s try to avoid partisan politics. Let’s try to apply a “reasonable person’s” assessment of the issues.
Patrick Ryan served 26 years in the U.S. Navy and retired in 1998 as an intelligence officer. In the 1970s he served in the Persian Gulf aboard the US Middle East Force Flagship visiting Iran and operating with the pre-Revolutionary Iranian Navy. In the 1980s he deployed to the Gulf during the Iran-Iraq war and the “Tanker War.” He served as an analyst at the Office of Naval Intelligence during the American reflagging and convoying of tankers in the Gulf assessing Iranian threats to US forces. In the 1990s he served at the Pentagon’s Joint Staff Intelligence Directorate during the first Gulf War and at the Center for Naval Analysis assessing Gulf political-military affairs. His last military assignment was at U.S. Central Command, the organization responsible for American military operations in the Persian Gulf and surrounding region. There he headed analysis of regional WMD and terrorism assessments. Since 1999 he has published newsletters and web sites on Persian Gulf affairs. Ryan is the founding and current president of the Tennessee World Affairs Council.
The Tennessee World Affairs Council is a nonprofit (501c3), nonpartisan educational charity based in Nashville that works to build understanding of global issues in our communities. Learn more about the Council and find how you can join, donate and volunteer at: www.TNWAC.org — Join / Donate / Volunteer