Volume 8, No. 1 – March 2004
THE PARADOX OF ANTI-AMERICANISM IN IRAN
This article analyzes the roots of anti-American sentiment in Iran, considering the impact of Islamism, nationalism, Third Worldism, and nativism on Iranian ideology and rhetoric following the country’s 1979 Revolution. In addition, the author looks at the extent to which this sentiment has reversed itself on the popular level over the past several years and why that has occurred.
While anti-Americanism has deep resonance in the Arab world, the situation is quite different in Iran, where the United States has in recent years become profoundly popular.
One indicator was the September 2002 poll commissioned by the Iranian Majlis’ National Security Committee which found that 74 percent of Iranians favored resumption of relations with the United States and 46 percent felt that U.S. policies on Iran were “to some extent correct,” despite the fact that Iranian media constantly harped on Bush’s “axis of evil” remark in his January 2002 State of the Union speech.(1) The Ayandeh Institute pollsters who conducted this poll, Abbas Abdi and Hossein Ali Qazian, were sentenced to jail terms of eight and nine years respectively for “publishing nonscientific research.”
Why this change from the days of the 1978-1979 revolution and 1979-1981 hostage-taking at the U.S. embassy in Tehran when millions of Iranians poured on to the streets to chant “Death to America?” It is worth understanding why this change has happened both as a case study of regime propaganda and the response by public opinion as well as its importance in the regional context.
The Iranian Exception
The principle reason for pro-American sentiment in Iran today is that the United States is a staunch opponent of the hated clerical regime. Bush pointed to this factor when in his 2002 State of the Union he explained his “axis of evil” remark by condemning “an unelected few [who] repress the Iranian people’s hopes for freedom.”(2)
There are fewer better explanations for why so many Iranians today are pro-American than Bush’s July 12, 2002 statement:
The people of Iran want the same freedoms, human rights, and opportunities as people around the world. Their government should listen to their hopes. In the last two Iranian presidential elections and in nearly a dozen parliamentary and local elections, the vast majority of the Iranian people voted for political and economic reform. Yet their voices are not being listened to by the unelected people who are the real rulers of Iran. Uncompromising, destructive policies have persisted, and far too little has changed in the daily lives of the Iranian people…. There is a long history of friendship between the American people and the people of Iran. As Iran’s people move towards a future defined by greater freedom, greater tolerance, they will have no better friend than the United States of America.(3)
As one astute observer of the Iranian scene summed up his impressions from two years of travel around Iran, “America’s greatest allies in Iran are the hardliners themselves; their constant anti-American rhetoric has made the United States even more popular among the Iranian people.”(4)
That said, the failures of the reform movement have also done much to drain anti-Americanism out of the Iranian system. The hopes for reforms from within the Islamic Republic, which were so high after the unexpected 1997 landslide victory of President Muhammad Khatemi, have died. Khatemi proved unwilling or unable to bring about meaningful change and the clerical hardliners have reasserted control, shoving aside the president and parliament to run the country through the judiciary and the revolutionary institutions (such as the Revolutionary Guard Corps), which report directly to Supreme Leader Ali Khamene’i.(5)
Khatemi’s dream had been to inaugurate “a dialogue of civilizations” based on people-to-people exchange with Americans and other Westerners, but without official government-to-government relations. But Khamene’i and his faction explicitly and repeatedly rejected such a shift, refusing also to change Iran’s policies to which Washington objected.(6) The reality was that the hardliners who control power blocked even this people-to-people initiative. Not even friends of revolutionary Iran could get visas to visit the country. As was the case with so many others of his policies, Khatami’s attempt to modify the revolution’s anti-Americanism–into opposition to U.S. government policies combined with friendship with the American people–failed.
The aftermath of the U.S. operations in Afghanistan and Iraq provided remarkable evidence about how far the pro-American sentiment has gone.(7) On June 22, 2003, the Iranian newspaper Yas-e Now published a remarkable poll that had originally appeared on the “Feedback” web page of the Expediency Discernment Council, run by former president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.
Those polled were given the question, “What are the actual demands of the Iranian people?” and a choice of four answers. They responded as follows:
— 13 percent chose the answer “solutions to the problems of people’s livelihood, and the continuation of the present political policy”–in other words, the current hardline stance.
— 16 percent chose “political reforms and increases in the powers of the reformists.”
— 26 percent chose “fundamental changes in management and in the performance of the system for an efficient growth”–a position often identified with Rafsanjani.
— 45 percent chose “change in the political system, even with foreign intervention.”
The fact that 45 percent of respondents endorsed foreign intervention if necessary is all the more surprising considering two factors: first, the continued imprisonment of 2002 pollsters Abdi and Qazian; and second, the ominous rumors circulating in Iran that the United States is considering an invasion of the country, though these had no basis in fact.
If the poll showed mass opinion, two interesting letters indicated that many in the elite are concerned about how far pro-Americanism has gone.(8) On Muhammad’s birthday (May 19, 2003), 196 prominent clerics and intellectuals issued an open letter to “express our complete dissatisfaction with the rulers in Iran.” The sharp criticism focused on “the unelected institutions” which are “united against the wishes of the people”–phrases that echo those used by Bush. The letter warned that present policies “might provide an excuse to some groups who desire freedom to sacrifice the independence of the country,” in other words, a U.S. invasion might be welcomed. It added, “We must learn a lesson from the fate of the Taliban and Saddam Hussein and understand that despotism and selfishness is destined to take the country down to defeat.”
On May 25, 2003, forty percent of the Parliament (Majlis) members signed a letter to Supreme Leader Ali Hossein Khamene’i. The letter carefully refrained from any criticism of Khamene’i, but its tone was otherwise tough. It warned, “Perhaps there has been no period in the recent history of Iran as sensitive as this one [due to] political and social gaps coupled with a clear plan by the government of the United States of America to change the geopolitical map of the region.” Insisting on “fundamental changes in methods, attitudes, and figures,” the letter warned, “if this is a cup of hemlock, it should be drunk before our country’s independence and territorial integrity are placed in danger.” The hemlock phrase was used by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini to explain his 1988 decision to end the war with Iraq.
Neither of the two letters was mentioned in Iranian newspapers, television, or radio because of a ban imposed by the Supreme National Security Council, chaired by President Muhammad Khatami. (This ban belies the commonly held notion that Khatami-era Iran enjoys press freedom.) The Council’s concern appears to be the spreading mood in Iran that the country is at risk of a U.S. invasion because of provocative actions by the hardliners. It is interesting to observe that such perceived risk emboldens reformers to step up their criticism of hardliners, contrary to the theory widely heard in the West that U.S. pressure hurts reformers. Indeed, there is by now an established pattern in which U.S. criticism of the hardliners is seized upon by reform elements as a reason why repression should be eased, so as to create national unity and to deprive Washington of a pretext for attacking Iran.(9)
What has occurred in Iran is much deeper than a reflexive “enemy of my enemy is my friend” attitude. The last few years has seen a far-reaching debate among wide sectors of society about the basic issues of Enlightenment thought. On issue after issue, intellectuals have come to argue for the values which America champions, from rule of law to free speech and representative government. Interestingly, many arguments are heard for the state to stay out of religious affairs. A leading intellectual has written a bookï¿½from prison, no lessï¿½arguing that democracy is incompatible with a state religion.
Hossein Mostafa Khomeini, the grandson of Aytollah Ruhollah Khomeini and himself a prominent cleric, speaks eloquentlyï¿½from the podium of the American Enterprise Institute in Washingtonï¿½about the importance of individual liberties and a secular state, while applauding America as the embodiment of these values.(10) Indeed, when asked, “What do you think is the best way for the government of the United States to behave in order to encourage the liberation and the freedom of the people of Iran?” Khomeini responded:
The best way is for the United States to help the movement towards democracy, democracy in Iran. They should look at this issue very seriously and not as dispassionately as they have been, waiting for something to happen and then get involved…. One should think how deep the problem and the pressures are in Iran on the Iranian people, that there are so many of them who in fact crave for some sort of foreign intervention to get rid of this calamity.
It is no exaggeration to say that America has won the battle for the hearts and minds of the Iranian people, and the hardline clerics have lost.
At the same time, though, there does remain much anti-Americanism in Iran. In particular, three strands of anti-Americanism bear closer examination:
–Proud Iranian nationalists are suspicious that the United States wants to block Iran from what they see as its natural place as leader of the region.
–Leftist Third World socialist ideas shaped the entire generation now running Iran, clerics as well as secular intellectuals (though this ideology has no attraction for the young).
–Traditionalists, a group that goes far beyond just religious conservatives, are deeply hostile to any implication that U.S. influence–directly or otherwise–would subvert Iran’s traditional culture and lifestyle.
For American intellectuals, it is an article of faith that Iranians became anti-American because of the 1953 overthrow of Muhammad Mossadegh. For instance, James Bill writes, “After its part in the overthrow of Muhammad Mosadegh in 1953, the United States found itself the object of growing Iranian criticism… Iranians of all political persuasions increasingly formed a negative image of the United States.”(11) Mark Gasiorowski argues that after Mossadegh’s overthrow, the Shah was able to hold power only because he was a client of the United States, lacking domestic legitimacy.(12)
The reality of the matter is rather more complex. For one thing, Mossadegh’s overthrow came in no small part because of his increasing isolation on the domestic political scene. As Barry Rubin wrote, in the final months, “Kashani [a major clerical figure] went over to the opposition; whole sectors of the National Front [the political movement that had supported him] broke away; and dozens of deputies resigned.”(13) Mossadegh may have God-like status among leftist foreign intellectuals, but, as Rubin noted, “In the days after Mossadegh’s removal, the shah and Zahedi [the new prime minister] seemed as popular as the National Front leader [Mossadegh] had ever been.(14)
Indeed, the clerical establishment then and now–as well as in the intervening years–have been largely hostile to Mossadegh. That said, there can be little doubt that many Iranian nationalists were profoundly disappointed at Mossadegh’s failure and that, as the Shah became more authoritarian, memories of the bad parts of the Mossadegh legacy faded as a legend of a golden age grew.
The nationalism of which pro-Mossadegh sentiment was a symbol was by no means necessarily Marxist, much less Communist. Some of these nationalists were in fact more sympathetic to the clergy than to the left. A good example was the first prime minister after the 1979 revolution, Mehdi Bazargan. Indeed, the first post-revolutionary government was full of such figures from the reconstituted National Front, such as Hassan Nazieh, who became chairman of the National Iranian Oil Company.
This nationalism was profoundly skeptical of the United States, but willing to work with it, so long as Iran got the respect it felt it deserved. During the heady days after the revolution when they were an important part of the power elite, the National Front leaders virtually never attacked the United States. Indeed, in the summer of 1979, Deputy Prime Minister Abbas Amir Entezam was working to normalize relations with the United States.(15)
This nationalist strand had broad support. The hardline cleric Ayatollah Muhammad Beheshti acknowledged in 1980, “It has to be confessed that there are several million Iranians who prefer a liberal government to a militant Islamic government.”(16) It was against this liberal nationalism that the Islamic clerics had to wage a vigorous campaign in 1979-81. Indeed, the taking of the American embassy in September 1979 was as much directed against the domestic liberal element as it was against the United States.(17)
The great fear among the revolutionary hardliners–the clerical element that won out and the leftists who wanted the revolution to go further than the liberals had taken it–was that the liberals would reconcile with the United States and establish a democratic, market system consistent with many U.S. values, though with Islam as a state religion. Indeed, the increasingly desperate attempts during 1980 by the Bazargan government to resolve the U.S. embassy hostage crisis were precisely because it saw how anti-Americanism was being used to undermine their position–starting with the December 2, 1979 ratification of the cleric-empowering, liberalism-ending Constitution.
In other words, the fear was that the heirs of Mossadegh–the new National Front–would work with America and for American-style values. That is hard to reconcile with the view that America’s overthrow of Mossadegh is the root of Iranian anti-Americanism.(18) Nationalism may be a factor in Iranian anti-Americanism, but it is much less significant than two other elements, namely, Third Worldism and nativism.
Third Worldism is that mix of socialism and anti-imperialism which blames the West, especially America, and the local elites which work with it for the shortcomings in developing countries, offering a vision of a more equitable and prosperous society once the evil West is forced to give up its death grip on the countries of Asia, Afria, and Latin America. It is hard to overestimate Third Worldism’s influence on Iranian intellectual life between 1963 and 1988.
The “outstanding intellectual” of Iran in the 1960s was Ali Shariati.(19) While studying for his doctorate in sociology and Islamic studies in Paris, he translated Fanon, Guevara, and Sartre and was injured demonstrating against the Algerian war. Returning to Iran in 1965, he lectured at the Husseinieh-i Ershard, a Tehran religious meeting hall financed by the heirs of Mossadegh’s movement.
Shariati’s lectures before his 1977 death, interrupted by jail time from 1972 to 1975, were extraordinarily popular, circulating on cassette and in transcription. He was the most popular writer on Islam for pre-revolutionary young, urban Iranians.(20) His theme was that Islam was the answer to the evils of capitalism in Iran. Shariati made Islam hip, in no small part by his connecting Islam to Third Worldism, including to political and cultural anti-Americanism. He also disassociated Islam from the clerics, whom he and his audience saw as backward. Not surprisingly, the clerics once in power devoted much effort to undercutting Shariati’s influence.
While the clerical establishment hated Shariati, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini took a neutral stance, being well aware of Shariati’s popularity among the young. Presumably in response to the enthusiasm for anti-Western Islam seen in the Shariati phenomenon, Khomeini began to use many Third Worldist phrases.
Whereas his 1963-64 polemics against the Shah which led to his exile were in no small part directed against leftist reformsï¿½land reform and women’s suffrageï¿½his discourse by the late 1970s made Islam sound compatible with Marxism. Ervand Abrahamiam provides numerous examples: “The lower class is the salt of the earth;” “In a truly Islamic society, there will be no landless peasants;” “We are for Islam, not for capitalism and feudalism.”(21) Abrahamiam explains how Khomeini changed traditional Shiite interpretations:
Instead of paying occasional lip-service to the ‘meek,’ he aggressively espoused the general rights and interests of the mostazafin [“a loose term used to depict the general populace: the meek, the poor, the masses,” Abrahamian explains]. Instead of talking of institutional reforms, he called for thorough political and cultural revolutions. Instead of preaching quietismï¿½ he exhorted the faithful to protest.
It is in this context that Khomeini fit his campaign against America. No longer confining himself to his 1960s complaint against American decadence, he now used language which sounded like it came from Marxist propaganda:
They [the Pahlavi government] have given all our oil to foreigners, Americans and others. They gave that all to the Americans, and what did they get in return? In return they received arms in order to establish military bases for Mr. America. We gave them both oil and military bases.(22)
This marriage of Third Worldism with Islam was the potent mixture which fueled the Iranian revolution. The Third Worldist element, essential to winning the support of urban youth, dictated that this revolution would be profoundly anti-American, not just anti-Shah.
Once the Shah was overthrown, the clerics devoted themselves to consolidating power at the expense of not only the liberal nationalists but also the Marxist left. By 1983, they had destroyed the secular parties, such as the pro-Soviet communist Tudeh party and the Fedayeen Guevarist guerrilla group.(23) But the clerics’ main fire was directed against the Mojahedin (the People’s Mojahedin of Iran, PMOI, or Mojahedin-e Khalq, MEK). This was no small event. By mid-1981, the Mojahedin newspaper had become the most widely read in Iran, and they were able to regularly draw many tens of thousands into the streets for protests against clerical rule–plus they made an alliance with Iranian President Bani Sadr against the clerics.(24)
The clerics hit back hard. Not content with their street toughs attacking the left, the clerics threw tens thousands of leftists in jail, torturing many. By the account of Khomeini’s designated successor, ten thousand were killed in one month alone. Bani Sadr had to flee the country in June 1981, taking off for Paris in the presidential plane along with Mojahedin leaders with whom he then cooperated politically for several years.
The ferocity of the attacks led the Iranian left and intellectual circles generally to hate the clerics as their main enemy. The West no long seemed as terrible as it once did. Indeed, since the clerics made anti-Americanism a defining characteristic of their rule, the left slowly moved away from anti-Americanism. By the late 1980s, the Mojahedin were presenting themselves as the great friends of the United States and American values.
In short, one of the hardline clerics’ accomplishments is that they drained Third Worldist anti-Americanism out of the Iranian intellectual and cultural scene.
Pro-traditionalist thinking or Nativism has strong roots in Iran. One of the most important modern Iranian authors, Jalal al-Ahmad, wrote an influential book in 1962 entitled Gharbzadegi–a made-up word usually translated as “Westoxication.” His theme was how Iranians are abandoning their traditions to ape the West, at the cost of losing their culture and history.(25)
His argument was rooted in leftism: “By providing a passionate eulogy for a passing era and its customs, Gharbazedgi articulated a Third-Worldist discourse very much skeptical of what the West had to offer.”(26) While his work was not specifically anti-American, it was no great leap for his readers to see that the fascination with America which was so palpable in 1960s’ Iran was the most obvious aspect of what al-Ahmad was attacking. Complaints about the loss of socio-cultural identity as well as reinforcement of traditional values were major themes of Iranian intellectual life from the late 1950s on.(27) Indeed, Boroujerdi describes the 1960s and 1970s as “the heyday of nativism,” showing how its influence was powerful in academia.(28)
Al-Ahmad was a secular, leftist intellectual who nevertheless recommended making use of Iran’s religious traditions as the most effective vaccine against Western influence.(29)This strand of thinking became a major element in the formation of the Third Worldist-religious alliance which was central to the success of the 1978-1979 revolution. The cement holding them together was one part the secular left’s embrace of cultural traditionalism, plus one part the clergy’s embrace of Third Worldist anti-imperialism. These two strands came together to make a powerfully anti-American mix.
In other words, the nativist element in Iranian anti-Americanism is more than religious reactionaries rejecting the modern world and all its ways for age-old traditions: Iranian nativism is also the cry of the secular intellectual wanting to preserve Iran’s poetry, music, paintings, and traditions. This makes Iranian nativism extraordinarily different from cultural conservatism in much of the Arab world because it includes a defense of Iran’s secular culture.
Arab cultural conservatism is more closely tied to religion and opposes local secular culture. For instance, Saudi cultural conservatism is a rejection of modern science as much as of modern rock music or Hollywood films. Abdel Aziz Bin Baz, the long-time official religious leader of Saudi Arabia argued until his 1999 death that Muslims have a religious obligation to hate Jews and Christians in general.(30) To be sure, Bin Baz rejected American values, but that was part and parcel of his general opposition to modern thought. He wrote a book on the theme that anyone who believes that the earth revolves around the sun should be killed (this from the man who had to approve all textbooks used in Saudi schools).
Some Bin-Baz-like attitudes can be found in Iran. For instance, once the clerics consolidated their rule in the early 1980s, they banned all singing in public (or on the radio) by women. Indeed, the only allowed style of male singing was determinedly old-fashioned. But that is not the only direction in which the clerical nativist impulse could go. When in the 1960s, Khomeini objected to the playing of Western-style music on Iranian radio, he complained that not enough was done to promote Iranian culture.(31) And within a few years after taking power, the Islamic Republic gave a boost to the Iranian film industry, seeing Iranian films as a counterweight to Western influence.(32) The Iranian filmmakers, who were generally leftists of a strongly anti-American bent, were acceptable to the Islamic Republic’s hardliners so long as their films drew the young away from Western influence.
But as in so many other areas of Iranian life, this anti-Western/anti-American alliance of the modern left and the traditional clergy has come apart. Now, the filmmakers are harassed by an Islamic Republic that dares not openly ban them but which detests them because they mock the hypocrisy and corruption of the hardline clerics.
The history of Iranian cinema in many ways parallels that of Iranian intellectual and cultural life in general. Whereas anti-Americanism was a prominent strain across the political spectrum in the 1970s and well into the 1980s, the hatred for the hardline politicized clerics has become the driving force of the last decade. In that context, anti-Americanism is subordinated, though not entirely gone.
1. This episode is discussed in Nazgol Ashouri, “Polling in Iran: Surprising Questions,” PolicyWatch No. 757 from The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, May 14, 2003.
3. The statement can be found at .
4. Afshin Molavi, “Iran: Reformist Blues, Economic Woes,” PolicyWatch No. 678 from The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, November 19, 2002.
5. The best explanation of Iran’s peculiar system–in which each official institution is shadowed by a more powerful revolutionary institution–is Wilfried Buchta, Who Rules Iran? The Structure of Power in the Islamic Republic (Washington: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 2000).
6. Cf. Patrick Clawson, “Khatami’s Dialogue with America, Not with Washington,” PolicyWatch No. 293 from The Washington Institute, January 8, 1998.
7. This episode is described in Patrick Clawson, “Reading the Popular Mood in Iran,” PolicyWatch No. 770 from The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, July 7, 2003.
8. This episode is described in Patrick Clawson, “Iran: Demonstrations, Despair, and Danger,” PolicyWatch No. 766 from The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, June 11, 2003.
9. For an analysis of this reaction to Bush’s “axis of evil” speech, see Ray Takeyh, “Iran: Scared Straight?”, PolicyWatch No. 622 from The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, May 3, 2002.
11. James Bill, The Eagle and the Lion: The Tragedy of American-Iranian Relations (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1988), p. 5.
12. Mark Gasiorowski, U.S. Foreign Policy and the Shah: Building a Client State in Iran (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1991).
13. Barry Rubin, Paved With Good Intentions: The American Experience and Iran (New York: Oxford University Press, 1980), p. 80.
14. Rubin, op. cit., p. 88.
15. Rubin, op. cit., pp. 285-291.
16. Quoted in Rubin, op. cit., p. 306.
17. The fear expressed by the hostage-takers was that the United States would work with the liberals to stage a coup, which they compared to the overthrow of Mossadegh. Cf. Massoumeh Ebtekar, Takeover in Tehran: The Inside Story of the 1979 U.S. Embassy Capture (Vancouver: Talonbooks, 2000), e.g., p. 52.
18. For a discussion of some of these issues, see Barry Rubin, “Regime Change in Iran: A Reassessment,” MERIA Journal, Vol. 7, No. 2 (June 2003)
19. The phrase is Ervand Abrahamian’s, from Iran Between Two Revolutions (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1982), p. 464. His analysis of Shariati continues to p. 473.
20. On his popularity and its central role in the 1979 revolution, see Abrahamian, Iran Between Two Revolutions, p. 534. See also Ali Shariati, Marxism and other Western Fallacies (translated by Richard Campbell; Berkeley: Mizan Press, 1980). His works are analyzed in depth in Nikpey, op. cit., pp. 99-180.
21. Ervand Abhrahamian, The Iranian Mojahedin (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1989), p. 22, which is also where the following quote comes from.
22. Quoted in Peter Chelkowski and Hamid Dabashi, Staging a Revolution: The Art of Persuasin in the Islamic Republic of Iran (New York, New York University Press, 1999), p. 39.
23. As described in great detail in Maziar Behrooz, Rebels with a Cause: The Failure of the Left in Iran (London: I.B. Taurus, 1999).
24. The definitive account of the Mojahedin’s role in this period is Abrahamian, The Iranian Mohahedin (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1989), pp. 186-245.
25. The best study of al-Ahmad’s relation to Third Worldist thought–specifically Fannon–is Amir Nikpey, Pouvoir et religion en Iran contemporain (Paris: L’Harmattan, 2001), pp. 86-92.
26. Mehrzad Boroujerdi, Iranian Intellectuals and the West: The Tormented Triumph of Nativism (Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 1996), p. 68.
27. Negin Nabavi, Intellectuals and the State in Iran: Politics, Discourse, and the Dilemma of Authenticity (Gainesville, FL: University Press of Florida, 2003), pp. 28-64.
28. Boroujerdi, op. cit., p. 132, as part of a chapter on academic nativism, pp. 131-155.
29. Nikpey, op. cit., pp. 92-97.
30. His writings and his influence are analyzed in detail in Antoine Basbous, L’Arabie Saoudite en Question (Paris: Perrin, 2002), especially pp. 125-140.
31. Vanessa Martin, Creating an Islamic State: Khomeini and the Making of a New Iran (London: I.B. Taurus, 2003), p. 115.
32. Homuz Key, Le cineman iranien (Paris: Karthala, 1999), especially pp. 83-96 and 239-266, and Mamad Haghighat, Histoire du cinema iranien (Paris: Cinema du reel/Centre Georges Pompidou, 1999).
Patrick Clawson is the deputy director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. The author of more than thirty scholarly articles on the Middle East, Dr. Clawson’s most recently edited the publication How to Build a New Iraq after Saddam (The Washington Institute, 2003). Dr. Clawson has also been a senior research professor at the Institute for National Strategic Studies of the National Defense University and a research economist at the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and Foreign Policy Research Institute.