9:30 – 10:20 – Registration
10:20 – 10:30 – Welcome by Kadir Ustun, Executive Director, The SETA Foundation at Washington D.C.
10:30 – 12:00 – Panel 1 – NATO and U.S.-Turkey Security Cooperation in a Turbulent Region
Moderator: Barbara Slavin, Atlantic Council
Jeffrey Mankoff, Center for International and Strategic Studies (CSIS)
Richard Outzen, National Defense University
Hasan Basri Yalçın, The SETA Foundation, Istanbul
Moeed Yusuf, United States Institute of Peace (USIP)
12:00 – 1:00 – Lunch
1:00 – 2:30 – Panel 2 – The Syrian Conflict: Divergences and Convergences in U.S. and Turkish Policies
Moderator: Adam Entous, The Wall Street Journal
Bassam Barabandi, Political Advisor to the Syrian High Negotiation Committee
Burhanettin Duran, The SETA Foundation
Denise Natali, National Defense University (NDU)
Andrew Tabler, Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP)
2:30 – 2:45 – Coffee Break
2:45 – 4:15 – Panel 3 – The Future of U.S.-Turkey Relations: Strategic, Transactional or Model Partnership?
Moderator: Kadir Ustun, The SETA Foundation at Washington D.C.
Ilan Goldenberg, Center for a New American Security (CNAS)
Kilic Kanat, Research Director, The SETA Foundation at Washington D.C.
Mark Perry, Independent Author and Analyst
4:15 – 4:30 – Closing Remarks
Bassam Barabandi is a defected Syrian diplomat who was First Secretary of the Syrian Embassy in Washington, D.C. He served diplomatic tours in Damascus, Beijing, New York and Washington, D.C. Since leaving the Syrian government, Mr. Barabandi has engaged in myriad activities providing expertise and consultation on all Syria-related matters to government agencies, administration officials and members of Congress. He is a co-founder of People Demand Change, a U.S.-based organization dedicated to improving conflict mediation and resolution, civil society structures and humanitarian relief within Syria. Mr. Barabandi has engaged with a number of pro-democracy organizations seeking a political transition in Syria. As such, he currently serves as a part- time consultant to groups like the United States Institute for Peace (USIP) and the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ASCWA). Prior to this, he was a consultant for the Syrian American Council (SAC), the largest Syrian-American organization in the U.S. Prior to his resignation in 2013, Mr. Barabandi worked to help provide visas and travel documents to activists targeted by the Assad regime, to provide political cover for Syrian dissidents here in the U.S. and as a courier of clandestine information to Syrian opposition and U.S. government officials in order to help level sanctions against the regime.
Burhanettin Duran currently serves as General Coordinator of the SETA Foundation, and is based in Ankara. Since 2009, Dr. Duran has served as the head of the department of Political Science and International Relations at İstanbul Şehir University. His focus is on the transformation of Islamism, Turkish Political Thought, Turkish Domestic Politics, Turkish Foreign Policy and Middle Eastern Politics. Dr. Duran is the author of Türk Parlamento Tarihi (3 volumes) (Ankara: TBMM, 2012) and the coeditor of Dünya Çatışma Bölgeleri I-II (Nobel, 2004, 2010), Dönüşüm Sürecindeki Türkiye (Alfa, 2007), Ortadoğu Yıllığı 2008 (Küre, 2009) and Türk Dış Politikası Yıllığı 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012. His articles have appeared in Middle Eastern Studies, Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs, Journal of Balkans and Near Eastern Studies, Insight Turkey, the Muslim World, EuroAgenda, Liberal Düşünce, Bilgi, Sivil Toplum. He has contributed to several edited books. He received his BA in Political Science and International Relations from Bogazici University in 1993, and his Ph.D. in Political Science from Bilkent University in 2001. He was a visiting scholar at George Mason University from 2010-2011.
Adam Entous Adam Entous joined the Wall Street Journal as a national security correspondent in 2010, covering the Pentagon, intelligence agencies and the White House, after 17 years with Reuters, the international news agency. Since joining the Journal, Mr. Entous has won back-to-back Edwin Hood Diplomatic Awards from the National Press Club, as well as other prizes, for stories on the conflict in Syria and Iraq, and for coverage of the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, and its aftermath. Before joining the Journal, Mr. Entous covered the White House for five years, including the end of Mr. Clinton’s presidency as well as Mr. Bush after the September 11, 2001 attacks. After the White House, Mr. Entous spent nearly four years in Jerusalem as senior correspondent for Reuters in Israel and the occupied Palestinian Territories, where he covered one war in Lebanon and two conflicts in the Gaza Strip. Mr. Entous was born in Montreal, Canada, but grew up in California where he attended the University of California at Irvine. He later graduated from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.
Ilan Goldenberg is Senior Fellow and Director of the Middle East Security Program at the Center for a New American Security. He is a foreign policy and defense expert with extensive government experience covering Iran’s nuclear program, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the broader challenges facing the Middle East. Prior to CNAS, Mr. Goldenberg served as the Chief of Staff to the Special Envoy for Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations at the U.S. Department of State. In that position, he has played a key leadership role with the small team supporting Secretary Kerry’s initiative to conduct permanent status peace negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians. From 2012 to 2013, Mr. Goldenberg served as a Senior Professional Staff Member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee covering Middle East issues for Chairmen Kerry and Menendez. From 2009 to 2012, Mr. Goldenberg served first as a Special Advisor on the Middle East and then as the Iran Team Chief in the Office of the Under-Secretary of Defense for PolicyPrior to that, Mr. Goldenberg worked as Policy Director and was one of the founding staff members of the National Security Network – a progressive nonprofit foreign policy organization dedicated to a pragmatic and principled foreign policy. Mr. Goldenberg holds a B.A. in international studies from the University of Pennsylvania, a B.S. in economics from the Wharton School of Business, and a master’s degree in International Affairs from Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs.
Kilic Bugra Kanat is the Research Director at the SETA Foundation at Washington DC. He is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Penn State University, Erie. Dr. Kanat received his PhD in Political Science from Syracuse University; a Master’s in Political Science from Syracuse University; a Master’s in International Affairs from Marquette University. He was awarded the Outstanding Research Award and Council of Fellows Faculty Research Award at Penn State, Erie. He participated in Future Leaders Program of Foreign Policy Initiative. Dr. Kanat’s writings have appeared in Foreign Policy, Insight Turkey, The Diplomat, Middle East Policy, Arab Studies Quarterly, Mediterranean Quarterly, Journal of South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies, and Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs. He is a columnist at Daily Sabah. He is the author of A Tale of Four Augusts: Obama’s Syria Policy.
Jeffrey Mankoff is deputy director and senior fellow with the CSIS Russia and Eurasia Program. He is the author of Russian Foreign Policy: The Return of Great Power Politics (Rowman & Littlefield, 2009) and a frequent commentator on international security, Russian foreign policy, regional security in the Caucasus and Central Asia, ethnic conflict, and energy security. Before coming to CSIS, he served as an adviser on U.S.-Russia relations at the U.S. Department of State as a Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellow. From 2008 to 2010, he was associate director of International Security Studies at Yale University and an adjunct fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. In addition to his policy research, Dr. Mankoff teaches courses on international security and Central Asia at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. Dr. Mankoff has held academic fellowships at Harvard, Yale, and Moscow State Universities. He holds dual B.A.s in international studies and Russian from the University of Oklahoma and an M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. in diplomatic history from Yale.
Denise Natali is a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for National Strategic Studies (INSS) where she specializes on the Middle East, trans-border Kurdish issue, regional energy security, and post-conflict state-building. Dr. Natali joined INSS in January 2011 as the Minerva Chair, following more than two decades of researching and working in the Kurdish regions of Iraq, Turkey, Iran, and Syria. Dr. Natali is the author of numerous publications on Kurdish politics, economy and energy, including The Kurdish Quasi-State: Development and Dependency in Post-Gulf War Iraq (Syracuse University Press, 2010) and The Kurds and the State: Evolving National Identity in Iraq, Turkey and Iran(Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2005), which was the recipient of the Choice Award for Outstanding Academic Title (2006) (Trans to Turkish Kurtler ve Devlet: Iraq, Turkiye ve Iran’da Ulusal Kimligin Gelismesi (Istanbul: Avesta Press, 2009). Dr. Natali received a Ph.D in political science at the University of Pennsylvania, a Master of International Affairs (MIA) at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs and a B.A. in government at Franklin & Marshall College.
Richard Outzen, joined the NDU and INSS faculty in July 2014. He previously served as the Deputy Chief of Staff for Training and Development for the U.S. Security Coordinator in Jerusalem. He has researched and published extensively on matters of policy and strategy, with a focus on the greater Middle East and Central Asia. A U.S. Army Foreign Area Officer, he has served in a variety of staff, command, and policy support assignments in Washington, D.C. and overseas. He has helped shape interagency discussion and national policy options for transitions in Iraq, Afghanistan, Turkey, Israel, and the Palestinian Authority. His areas of expertise include Defense Policy and Strategy, Strategic Culture, the Middle East, NATO/Europe, and Central Asia. Colonel Outzen graduated cum laude with a B.A. from Dartmouth College in 1989, and holds an M.A. in National Strategic Affairs from the Naval Postgraduate School as well as an M.S. in National Security Resourcing from the Eisenhower School. He is a Distinguished Graduate of the Eisenhower School, and a graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He has published over a dozen articles on language, culture, strategy, and Middle Eastern affairs. Colonel Outzen is a qualified military linguist in Turkish, Arabic, Hebrew, and German, and has spent over a decade serving in U.S. military and diplomatic missions overseas. He has participated in military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. His military service has also included tours in the office of the Secretary of Defense and on the Joint Staff, and service as a military attaché in Israel.
Mark Perry is a foreign policy analyst, historian and author. He is the author of nine books including Four Stars, Eclipse: The Last Days of the CIA and Talking to Terrorists. He has authored nine books: Four Stars, Eclipse: The Last Days of the CIA, A Fire In Zion: Inside the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Process, Conceived in Liberty, Lift Up Thy Voice, Grant and Twain, Partners In Command, Talking To Terrorists, and The Most Dangerous Man in America: The Making of Douglas MacArthur. Perry’s articles have been featured in a number of leading publications including The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Nation, Newsday, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Christian Science Monitor, and The Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio). He is a graduate of Northwestern Military and Naval Academy and of Boston University.
Barbara Slavin is the Acting Director of the Future of Iran Initiative at the Atlantic Council and Washington Correspondent for Al-Monitor.com, a website devoted to news from and about the Middle East. The author of Bitter Friends, Bosom Enemies: Iran, the US and the Twisted Path to Confrontation (2007), she is a regular commentator on US foreign policy and Iran on NPR, PBS, and C-SPAN. A career journalist, Slavin previously served as Assistant Managing Editor for world and national security of the Washington Times, Senior Diplomatic Reporter for USA TODAY, Cairo Correspondent for the Economist, and as an editor at the New York Times Week in Review. She has covered such key foreign policy issues as the US-led war on terrorism, policy toward “rogue” states, the Iran-Iraq war, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. She has traveled to Iran nine times. Slavin also served as a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, where she wrote Bitter Friends, and as a Senior Fellow at the US Institute of Peace, where she researched and wrote the report Mullahs, Money and Militias: How Iran Exerts Its Influence in the Middle East.
Andrew J. Tabler is the Martin J. Gross Fellow in the Program on Arab Politics at The Washington Institute, where he focuses on Syria and U.S. policy in the Levant. Mr. Tabler achieved unparalleled long-term access to Bashar al-Assad’s Syria. During fourteen years of residence in the Middle East, Mr. Tabler served as co-founder and editor-in-chief of Syria Today, Syria’s first private-sector English-language magazine; as a consultant on U.S.-Syria relations for the International Crisis Group (2008); and as a fellow of the Institute of Current World Affairs (2005-2007), writing on Syrian, Lebanese, and Middle Eastern affairs. Following his graduate work in Cairo, Egypt, Mr. Tabler held editorships with the Middle East Times and Cairo Times, where he focused on Arab-Israeli peace negotiations, before becoming senior editor and director of editorial for the Oxford Business Group (OBG). His articles and opinion pieces on Middle East affairs and U.S. foreign policy have appeared in the New York Times, the New York Times Magazine, the International Herald Tribune, Newsweek, Foreign Policy, and Foreign Affairs. He has also appeared in interviews with CNN, NBC, CBS, PBS, NPR, and the BBC. Mr. Tabler is author of “Syria’s Collapse and How Washington Can Stop It” (Foreign Affairs, July-August 2013) and the 2011 book In the Lion’s Den: An Eyewitness Account of Washington’s Battle with Syria (Lawrence Hill Books).
Kadir Ustun is the Executive Director at the SETA Foundation at Washington, D.C. He also serves as an Assistant Editor of Insight Turkey, an academic journal published by the SETA Foundation. Dr. Ustun holds a PhD in Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies from Columbia University and a Master’s degree in History from Bilkent University. He has contributed to various SETA reports and his writings have appeared in various publications such as Insight Turkey, Al Jazeera English, Hurriyet Daily News, Daily Sabah, Mediterranean Quarterly, and Cairo Review of Global Affairs among others. He is also co-editor of edited volumes History, Politics and Foreign Policy in Turkey, Change and Adaptation in Turkish Foreign Policy, and Politics and Foreign Policy in Turkey: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives.
Moeed W. Yusuf is director of South Asia programs at the U.S. Institute of Peace. Yusuf has been engaged in expanding USIP’s work on Pakistan/South Asia since 2010. Before joining USIP, Yusuf was a fellow at the Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future at the Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, and concurrently a research fellow at the Mossavar-Rahmani Center at Harvard Kennedy School. He has also worked at the Brookings Institution. In 2007, he co-founded Strategic and Economic Policy Research, a private sector consultancy firm in Pakistan. Yusuf has also consulted for a number of Pakistani and international organizations including the Asian Development Bank, World Bank, and the Stockholm Policy Research Institute, among others. From 2004-2007, he was a full-time consultant with the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI), Pakistan’s premier development-sector think tank. Yusuf taught in Boston University’s Political Science and International Relations Departments as a senior teaching fellow in 2009. He had previously taught at the defense and strategic studies department at Quaid-e-Azam University, Pakistan. He lectures regularly at the U.S. Department of State’s Foreign Service Institute and has also lectured at the Pakistan Military Staff College and at NATO’s Center of Excellence-Defense Against Terrorism in Ankara, Turkey. Yusuf has served on a number of important task forces, advisory councils, working groups, and governing boards, both in the U.S. and Pakistan. In 2013, he was selected to Nobel laureate, Pugwash International’s ‘Council’ (governing body) and subsequently became the youngest member ever to be included in its global executive committee to serve a six-year term. He holds a Masters in International Relations and PhD in Political Science from Boston University.
Hasan Basri Yalcin received his undergraduate degree in International Relations at Beykent University and completed his master’s degree in the same field at Koc University. Yalcin received his PhD from the University of Cincinnati in 2011. His dissertation was titled, “The Struggle for Autonomy: A Realist Theory of International Relations.” Yalcin currently teaches at Istanbul Commerce University. His research interests include international relations theory, international security, and the philosophy of social sciences.
The Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA) at Washington, D.C. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, independent, nonpartisan think tank based in Washington, D.C. dedicated to innovative studies on national, regional, and international issues concerning Turkey and US-Turkey relations.