Washington Seminar: “Is the U.S. Pulling Out of the Middle East?”

On 21 April 2022, The Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies hosted another Washington webinar to explore the security challenges facing the Middle East and South Asia.

The U.S. national security strategies, over the past two presidential administrations, have called for more focus on Europe and Asia and less on the Middle East. In the aftermath of the U.S. military withdrawal from Afghanistan and the reduced intensity of Islamic State operations in the region, many observers argue that the U.S. is pulling out of the Middle East. These voices have grown louder since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and China’s increasing assertiveness against Taiwan.

Is the U.S. really pulling out of the Middle East, or is that claim simply hyperbole? NESA Center Professor Dr. Richard Russell and distinguished scholar-practitioners from the Atlantic Council William Wechsler (Senior Director, Rafik Hariri Center & Middle East Programs) and Kirsten Fontensorse (Nonresident Senior Fellow, Rafik Hariri Center & Middle East Programs) walked us through the strengths and weaknesses of this controversial claim.

The Washington Seminar discussion series is a flagship NESA Center program designed to provide senior diplomatic officials from the NESA region and U.S. partner countries with a forum for candid and substantive discussion on issues of critical importance to national and regional security.

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Speakers from the left: Dr. Richard Russell, William Wechsler, and Kirsten Fontensorse


The views presented in this article are those of the speaker or author and do not necessarily represent the views of DoD or its components.