Keeping Iran in Check: How to Combat Iran’s Illicit Activities

March 24, 2017
10:00 am - 11:30 am

Event Description

The Foundation for Defense of Democracies hosted a breakfast conversation on Friday, March 24, titled Keeping Iran in Check: How to Combat Iran’s Illicit Activities. The conversation featured the Founder and President of the Institute for Science and International Security David Albright; FDD’s CEO Mark Dubowitz; and Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress Brian Katulis. Oren Dorell, foreign affairs reporter at USA Today moderated the discussion.

Iran’s regional influence and illicit activities have been growing while much of the world has turned a blind eye to them in the post-JCPOA environment. U.S. policy toward Iran has not effectively stemmed these activities. Are there opportunities to pursue new policy options to check Iran’s behavior? How can the U.S. and its allies limit Iran’s destabilizing role in the region?


David Albright, a physicist, is Founder and President of the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) in Washington, D.C. He has written numerous assessments on secret nuclear weapons programs throughout the world. He and ISIS have closely tracked the Iranian nuclear program for many years, deriving technical analysis and policy solutions for resolving the crisis. Mr. Albright has testified numerous times on nuclear issues before the U.S. Congress. He is regularly called on to train decision-makers in the United States and abroad in technical matters and non-proliferation policy making. The media frequently cite Mr. Albright, and he appears often on television and radio. Albright has co-authored four books, including 2010’s Peddling Peril: How the Secret Nuclear Trade Arms America’s Enemies, listed by The Atlantic as one of the best foreign affairs books of 2010.

Mark Dubowitz is the Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, where he leads projects on Iran, sanctions, and nonproliferation. A former venture capitalist and technology executive, Mr. Dubowitz heads FDD’s Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance. He co-leads The Iran Task Force and is co-chair of the Project on U.S. Middle East Nonproliferation Strategy. Widely recognized as one of the key influencers in shaping the Iran sanctions architecture of the past decade, Mr. Dubowitz has advised U.S. administrations and lawmakers and testified more than twenty times before Congress and foreign legislative committees on Iran sanctions and nuclear issues. He is the author or co-author of over twenty studies on economic sanctions and Iran’s nuclear program. Mr. Dubowitz teaches courses on sanctions and international negotiations at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs, where he is a senior fellow. He was featured as one of the key “financial warriors” against Iran by The Wall Street Journal’s Jay Solomon in his 2016 book “The Iran Wars.”

Brian Katulis is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress, where his work focuses on U.S. national security strategy and counterterrorism policy. For more than a decade, he has advised senior U.S. policymakers on foreign policy and has provided expert testimony several times to key congressional committees, including the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee. Mr. Katulis has conducted extensive research on the ground in the Middle East, where he has lived and worked in a number of countries, including Egypt, the Palestinian territories, Israel, and Jordan. His past experience includes work at the National Security Council and the U.S. Departments of State and Defense during President Bill Clinton’s administration. He also worked for Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, Freedom House, and former Pennsylvania Gov. Robert Casey.

Oren Dorell is a foreign affairs reporter at USA Today, where he has worked for more than 12 years. He has written about society and warfare in the Middle East from Morocco to Pakistan. Mr. Dorell has covered disaster responses in Japan, Pakistan, Haiti, and Chile. He has also covered diplomatic efforts surrounding the Syrian civil war, international efforts to contain Iran’s nuclear program, and Russia’s war in eastern Ukraine and its challenge to NATO and Western democracies.


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