[Online] A Better Way in the Middle East, with Trita Parsi - Massachusetts Peace Action

Start: Monday, January 31, 2022 4:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time (US & Canada) (GMT-04:00)

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With decreased U.S. presence in the Middle East, diplomatic efforts in the region have rapidly increased, fostering talk and cooperation. The Baghdad dialogue, as it is known, has allowed Middle Eastern nations to stand on their own, shedding their dependence on the U.S. and American military involvement.

On Monday, January 31st, we will be joined by Trita Parsi to discuss how the Baghdad dialogue is essential in mitigating America’s influence in the Middle East. He will discuss his article, in which he details the importance of such independent diplomacy and the unfavorable alternative of the Abraham Accords both for the U.S. and Middle Eastern nations. In his own words: “[I]f the Biden administration is serious about reducing America’s military footprint in the Middle East, then the choice between the Baghdad dialogue and the Abraham Accords is clear. The former will rely on regional resources and leadership without American involvement. The latter will give new life to Middle Eastern rivalries that are bound to drag the United States back into the quicksands.”

Trita Parsi is an award-winning author and the 2010 recipient of the Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order. He is an expert on US-Iranian relations, Iranian foreign politics, and the geopolitics of the Middle East. He is the co-founder and executive vice president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, and founder and former president of the National Iranian American Council. Parsi has followed Middle East politics through work in the field and extensive experience on Capitol Hill and at the United Nations. He is frequently consulted by Western and Asian governments on foreign policy matters.

He has authored three books on US foreign policy in the Middle East, with a particular focus on Iran and Israel, one of which won the silver medal winner of the 2008 Arthur Ross Book Award from the Council on Foreign Relations, and another was elected by Foreign Affairs journal as the Best Book of 2012 on the Middle East.

Parsi was born in Iran but moved with his family at the age of four to Sweden in order to escape political repression in Iran. His father was an outspoken academic who was jailed by the Shah and then by the Ayatollah. He moved to the United States as an adult and studied foreign policy at Johns Hopkins’ School for Advanced International Studies where he received his Ph.D. under Francis Fukuyama and Zbigniew Brzezinski.

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