In recent days, American and coalition forces across Iraq have faced violent challenges from Sunni insurgents and Shiite militiamen. Dozens of American troops and hundreds of Iraqis have died in the fighting, which in some areas has led to the breakdown of coalition authority. As the Bush administration struggles to regain control, many observers are wondering what the unrest means for the future stability of Iraq and for U.S. plans to hand over authority to an Iraqi provisional government this summer.
The surge of violence in Iraq coincides with visits to Washington next week by America’s two closest Middle East allies—President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon of Israel. In addition to Iraq, President Bush will be discussing with them two new initiatives that could affect the entire region: Sharon’s plan to disengage unilaterally from the Gaza Strip and the administration’s own political reform strategy for the Greater Middle East.
In this comprehensive Brookings press briefing, experts from the Saban Center for Middle East Policy and Foreign Policy Studies will review the latest developments in Iraq and preview President Bush’s meetings with Mubarak and Sharon.
PanelistsIvo H. Daalder Former Brookings Expert, President - Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Former U.S. Ambassador to NATOMichael E. O’Hanlon Director of Research - Foreign Policy, Director - Strobe Talbott Center for Security, Strategy, and Technology, Co-Director - Africa Security Initiative, Senior Fellow - Foreign Policy, Strobe Talbott Center for Security, Strategy, and Technology, Philip H. Knight Chair in Defense and Strategy