Restoring U.S. Credibility: Voices from the Arab World
On January 14, 2009, the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU) and The Century Foundation hosted a conference in Washington, DC, entitled “Restoring U.S. Credibility: Voices from the Arab World.” Three Arab scholars from Egypt and Saudi Arabia were invited to America along with several other regional experts from the Middle East. Funding was provided by a grant from the U.S. State Department.
Discussion Moderator Geneive Abdo (foreign policy analyst, The Century Foundation) welcomed the audience and introduced the three speakers. Dr. Salah Al-Mani (dean, College of Law and Political Science, King Saud University, Riyadh) is an advisor to the Saudi government and the Gulf Co-operation Council. Abou Elele Mady (founder and chair of al-Wasat, a moderate Islamist political party in Egypt that has yet to be legalized) has been influential in Egypt’s intellectual and public arenas for thirty years. He seeks to offer a balance between democratic and Islamic values among Egyptians. Dr. Manar M. El Shourbagy (senior consultant on American affairs, Arab Center for Development and Future Studies) is involved with electoral reform and has participated in various human rights conferences on electoral issues. Her research focuses on the American legislative process. (Summary by Alda Benjamen)