Recent Events

“The Modern Maccabees? The Three Languages of Revisionist Zionism”
Featuring Arie M. Dubnov

Thursday, December 5, 2019 | 4:00 – 5:30 PM
H. J. Patterson Hall, Room 2114/2118

Arie DubnovArie M. Dubnov is an associate professor of history and the Max Ticktin Chair of Israel Studies at the George Washington University. This talk will be looking at some of the “maximalists”- an eclectic group of intellectuals and warriors who chose the path of open confrontation and military struggle with both Palestinian-Arabs and the British mandatory forces in the 1930s and ’40s.

(Pre-) Chanukah party at 5:30 PM following the lecture!
4th floor in the Israel Studies Suite
Everyone is welcome to attend both or either

Please RSVP by Dec. 4th to Avis Koeiman at
Please let us know which (lecture? party? both?) you will attend.

This event is co-sponsored by the Joseph and Rebecca Meyerhoff Center for Jewish Studies and the Department of History, Nathan & Jeanette Miller Center for Historical Studies.

Amb. Dennis RossThe Dubin Family Lecture
Distinguished guest speaker: Ambassador Dennis Ross

Is There a New Normal in the Middle East? 

Tuesday, April 9, 2019 | 5:30 – 7:00 PM
The Adele H. Stamp Student Union, Prince George’s Room

It is also Israel’s Election Day! With polls closing at 3 p.m. ET, Ambassdor Ross along with Professor Yoram Peri, Director of GIIS, will provide up-to-the-minute analysis on the day’s historic election.  Click here to see the recording. To see more photos, click here.

Ambassador Ross is Counselor and William Davidson Distinguished Fellow at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy. Prior to returning to the Institute in 2011, he served two years as special assistant to President Obama and National Security Council Senior Director for the Central Region, and a year as special advisor to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

He is best known for having played a leading role over 12 years in shaping U.S. involvement in the Middle East peace process and dealing directly with the parties in negotiations. Ambassador Ross was U.S. point man on the peace process in both the George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton administrations before and during the Oslo Peace Process. He was instrumental in brokering the many negotiations, both successful and otherwise, during that period.

Ambassador Ross is the author of several influential books on Middle East peace; Doomed to Succeed: The U.S.-Israel Relationship from Truman to Obama (2015). His memoir and analysis of his role in the Oslo Process is The Missing Peace: The Inside Story of the Fight for Middle East Peace (2004). His new book, Be Strong and of Good Courage, written with his colleague David Makovsky, will be published in September this year.  It provides profiles of four Israeli ministers who made historic choices and explores the lessons from those decisions to see if they can provide a guide to dealing with the fateful choice that Israel’s leaders must soon confront or by default become a binational state.

Ancestrial Sin_ picsThe Ancestral Sin
Created by: David Deri, Ruth Yuval, Doron Galezer * Director and Producer: David Deri
Israel 2017, 109 min, Hebrew and Moroccan, Hebrew & English Subtitles

Film showing with Director David Deri

Tuesday, March 26, 2019 | 12:30 – 2:30 PM
H. J. Patterson Hall, Room 2114

Direct questions and RSVP to Avis Koeiman at

The story of Israel’s “development towns” in a chilling documentary, as never told before: Testimonials and previously sealed transcripts reveal a method, an ideology and and disturbing practice of law enforcement and decision makers behind the “population dispersal” policies in the first two decades of independence.
The director’s family, like others, was taken to Yeruham, a development town in the Negev desert. Their personal stories recount of the price immigrant families paid and the price still paid by Israeli society, unwilling to deal head-on with those early years and forgotten towns.  Read more here.

David Deri


David Deri was chosen as one of “The hundred influencing the Israeli media” by the editors of the Globes newspaper in Israel and has won numerous awards for his previous films on Mizrahim in Israel and on Muslim radicalization in Europe.

An electrifying new documentary series on the problematic integration of Middle Eastern Jews by Israel’s European founders in the 1950s”The New York Post


Charles FreilichIsraeli National Security: a New Strategy for an Era of Change
Featuring Dr. Charles Freilich

Wednesday, February 27, 2019 | 3:30 – 5:00 PM
H. J. Patterson Hall, Room 2114

Dr. Freilich, a former deputy national security adviser in Israel, is a senior fellow at Harvard’s Belfer Center and author of Zion’s Dilemmas: How Israel Makes National Security Policy (2012), Israeli National Security: A New Strategy for an Era of Change (2018), and Israel and the Cyber-Threat (forthcoming late 2018). His primary areas of expertise are the Middle East, U.S.- Middle East policy, and Israeli national security strategy and decision- making.

Click here to listen to audio recording of event.

Trump in the Middle EastTrump, Israel & The Middle East: A Midterm Assessment
 (Panel Discussion)

Click here to see recording of event.

Thursday, February 7, 2019 | 4:00 – 5:30 PM
H. J. Patterson Hall, Atrium, 1st Floor


Professor Scott Lasensky, former American diplomat in Israel, Senior Advisor on Israel and the Middle East, Obama Administration (2011 – 2017), University of Maryland

Distinguished Speakers:

Elisa Catalano, former Senior Advisor on the Middle East, White House and State Department (2005 – 2016), Center for a New American Security

Dr. Robert Satloff, Executive Director & Howard P. Berkowitz Chair in U.S. Middle East Policy, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy

Professor Shibley Telhami, Anwar Sadat Professor of Peace and Development, Department of Government and Politics, University of Maryland

At the two-year mark, U.S. foreign policy bears many hallmarks of change. Please join the Gildenhorn Institute for Israel Studies for a midterm assessment of the Trump Administration and its policies toward Israel and the Middle East. Speakers on this distinguished panel—including some of the most recognized and respected figures in the foreign policy community—will offer their analysis and take questions from students. The event will be on-the-record.  RSVP and direct questions to Avis Koeiman at

New Perspectives on the Partition of Palestine, 1937-1947
Featuring Arie M. Dubnov

Tuesday, December 4, 2018 | 3:30 – 5:00 PM
H. J. Patterson Hall, Room 4123

Arie DubnovArie M. Dubnov is an associate professor of history and the Max Ticktin Chair of Israel Studies at the George Washington University. His latest book, Partitions: A Transnational History of Twentieth-century Territorial Separatism (2019, co-edited with Laura Robson), traces the idea of partition in the British interwar imperial context and connects the links between partition plans in Ireland, Palestine/Israel and India/Pakistan.

Chanukah party at 5:00 PM following the lecture!

Click here to see recording of the lecture presentation.

Everyone welcome to attend both or either.

This event is co-sponsored by the Joseph and Rebecca Meyerhoff Center for Jewish Studies and the Department of History, Nathan & Jeanette Miller Center for Historical Studies.

The U.S.- Israel Security Alliance: An Insider’s Perspective
Featuring Brigadier General Assaf Orion

Tuesday, October 30, 2018 | 9:30 – 10:45 AM
Susquehanna Hall, Room 1119

U.S. Israel Flag_Orion






Please join us for this special opportunity to discuss American-Israeli security relations, including current challenges and dilemmas. Brigadier General Assaf Orion will be interviewed by Visiting Professor Scott Lasensky, engage in a dialogue with students, and take questions from members of the broader campus community.

Orion is a Senior Research Fellow at Israel’s Institute for National Security Studies, and until 2015 was a member of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) General Staff, heading the Strategic Planning Branch.

This event will be on-the-record, and is co-sponsored by CISSM, School of Public Policy.

Israel’s Entrepreneurial Culture: How a Socialist Economy Turned into Start-Up Nation
Featuring David Rosenberg

Tuesday, October 16, 2018 | 2:30 – 4:30 PM
H. J. Patterson Hall, Room 1102

Tel AvivFrom a very inauspicious start, Israel has developed into one the world’s leading centers for high technology over the last two decades.  Good engineering and science skills only explain part of the phenomenon: Israel’s vaunted start-up culture is first and foremost based on values embedded deeply in Israeli society.

David RosenbergDavid Rosenberg is the author of Israel’s Technology Economy: Origins and Impact (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018). He is also an economics editor and a columnist for the Haaretz daily in English. He has been a journalist in Israel for three decades.

The Israeli Refugee Asylum Regime: A Comparative Context 
Featuring Dr. Tally Kritzman-Amir

Thursday, September 6, 2018 | 12:30 – 2:00 PM
H.J. Patterson Hall, Room 2118

Refugee pic

Over the last two decades a number of refugees, mostly from Africa, have arrived in Israel seeking political asylum.  Israel has introduced strict measures to stop the entry of illegal immigrants and to deport those who are already in the country. Earlier this year the issue erupted into a fierce public debate that is still going on.  This talk will describe these processes in a comparative context, given the growth of the refugee crisis internationally, and discuss the broader implications of refugee protection and responsibility sharing.



Dr. Tally Kritzman-Amir

Dr. Tally Kritzman-Amir is a Senior Lecturer of immigration and international law at the College of Law and Business, Ramat Gan, Israel. She received her LLB from Tel Aviv University, Magna Cum Laude (2002). She clerked for Justice Mishael Cheshin in the Israeli Supreme Court, and she is a member of the Israeli bar since 2004. She received her PhD from Tel Aviv University after graduating from the direct PhD program, and wrote her thesis on “Socio-economic refugees” (2008). She was a Fox International Fellow at Yale University (2006-7), a Hauser Research scholar at NYU (2008-9) and Polonsky Fellow at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute (2010-5). In 2017-18 she was a visiting fellow at the Harvard Law School Human Rights Program and a scholar-in-residence at the Hadassah Brandeis Institute, as well as an instructor at Yale University, and in 2018-9 she is an Israel Institute Associate Professor at Harvard Department of Sociology.

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