Please join the Foundation for Middle East Peace & the New Israel Fund for
Jerusalem & The Embassy
Monday, May 14th | 10:30am
1319 18th Street NW, 2nd Floor
Washington, DC 20036
Foundation for Middle East Peace
Ir Amim (City of Peoples/City of Nations)
Michele Dunne (participating moderator)
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
With pomp and circumstance, and coinciding with the Palestinians’ commemoration of Nakba Day and the start of Ramadan, on May 14th the United States will be opening its Embassy in Jerusalem — a city holy to Jews, Muslims, and Christians worldwide, and a focal point of the national identity and aspirations of both Israelis and Palestinians. Fulfilling a much-touted campaign promise of President Trump, U.S. officials explained the decision to move the Embassy as nothing more than a recognition of reality. But the reality in Jerusalem – and of its beleaguered Palestinian neighborhoods and ascendant settlers – is more complex. The panel will discuss the current concerns and future scenarios for Jerusalem and its residents against the backdrop of the embassy move and of the broader political realities in the U.S. and in Israel.
Lara Friedman is the President of the Foundation for Middle East Peace. Prior to coming to FMEP, Lara was the Director of Policy and Government Relations at Americans for Peace Now, and before that she was a U.S. Foreign Service Officer, serving in Jerusalem, Washington, Tunis and Beirut. Lara is a leading authority on U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, with particular focus on the Israeli-Arab conflict, settlements and Jerusalem, and on the role of the U.S. Congress. She frequently briefs Members of Congress, Administration officials, and others in the foreign policy/national security community, and is regularly published in the U.S. and Israeli press. Lara works closely with Jerusalem expert Danny Seidemann and his NGO “Terrestrial Jerusalem,” participates in various Track II Israeli-Palestinian efforts, and is a non-resident fellow at the U.S./Middle East Project (USMEP). She holds a B.A. from the University of Arizona and a Master’s degree from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service, and speaks French, Spanish, Arabic and (rather poor) Italian.
Betty Herschman is the Director of International Relations & Advocacy at Ir Amim (City of Peoples/City of Nations) in Jerusalem, serving as the organization’s point person for international policy makers, politicians, journalists, think tanks, and Jewish communal organizations outside of Israel. She is Ir Amim’s key liaison to the local diplomatic community in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv; conducts policy advocacy in the US and Europe; and serves as spokesperson to the foreign press. Prior to her role at Ir Amim, Betty directed external relations and development functions for US based non-profit organizations devoted to the elimination of homelessness, domestic violence, and disparities in access to health care. She holds a master’s degree in public administration from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and a master’s degree in education from Boston University. Betty has been published in Haaretz, JPost, The Times of Israel, +972 Magazine and Sada, an online journal of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
Michele Dunne is the director and a senior fellow in Carnegie’s Middle East Program, where her research focuses on political and economic change in Arab countries, particularly Egypt, as well as U.S. policy in the Middle East. She was the founding director of the Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East at the Atlantic Council from 2011 to 2013 and was a senior associate and editor of the Arab Reform Bulletin at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace from 2006 to 2011. Dunne was a Middle East specialist at the U.S. Department of State from 1986 to 2003, where she served in assignments that included the National Security Council, the Secretary’s Policy Planning Staff, the U.S. embassy in Cairo, the U.S. consulate general in Jerusalem, and the Bureau of Intelligence and Research. She also served as a visiting professor of Arabic language and Arab studies at Georgetown from 2003 to 2006.