Saban Forum 2014: Americans and Israelis Discuss a Tumultuous Middle East

The 11th annual Saban Forum begins today. Organized by the Center for Middle East Policy at Brookings, the Forum provides a platform for Americans and Israelis to engage in a candid exchange of views and generate creative ideas to address the multiple challenges that confront the United States and Israel in the Middle East. This year’s session will feature remarks — broadcast via webcast here — by U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Israeli Labor Party Leader Isaac Herzog and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.


This year’s Forum is entitled “Stormy Seas: The United States and Israel in a Tumultuous Middle East,” and discussions among the participants will consider the future for Israelis and Palestinians, the nuclear negotiations with Iran and how Israel and the United States are coping with turmoil in Syria and the threat from ISIS.


Each year since 2004, the Saban Forum has brought together American and Israeli officials, business executives, policymakers and thought leaders from across the political and social spectrum. Past speakers have included an array of distinguished leaders, including President William J. Clinton, President George W. Bush, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, HM King Abdullah of Jordan, President Shimon Peres, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Middle East Envoy Tony Blair, Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, and Secretaries of State Hillary Clinton, Condoleezza Rice and Henry Kissinger.


Most of the discussions at the Saban Forum take place under the Chatham House Rule, but several sessions highlighted below will be on-the-record and webcast. We’ll be live-tweeting these sessions from @BrookingsFP and individual accounts, and we encourage you to tune into the public sessions and join the conversation using the hashtag #Saban14. Our new blog, Markaz, focusing on politics in and policy toward the broader Middle East, has been launched just in time for the Forum, and will be featuring commentaries from Forum participants — consistent with the Chatham House format of the dialogue —throughout the course of the weekend and in the days that follow.


Webcast Sessions of the 2014 Saban Forum




Friday, December 5
6:00 pm Welcoming Remarks
Strobe Talbott, President, The Brookings Institution
6:30 pm A Conversation with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton
Moderated by Haim Saban, Chairman, The Saban Forum
8:30 pm

Israel in the Region and the World

A Conversation with Isaac Herzog, Israeli Chair of the Labor Party and Leader of the Opposition

Moderated by Jeffrey Goldberg, National Correspondent, The Atlantic




Saturday, December 6


1:00 pm  Keynote Address: Vice President Joe Biden




Sunday, December 7


11:30 am  Keynote Address: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (via satellite)
12:15 pm  Keynote Address: Secretary of State John Kerry