Former Middle East Commander Gen. Abizad to Speak at Duke

“The U.S. Military Response in Today’s Middle East” will address the geopolitical challenges in the region’s ever-changing security environment.

Gen. John Abizaid, former commander of the U.S. Central Command, will speak at Duke University’s Program in American Grand Strategy on Tuesday, Oct. 20. The free public lecture will take place in the Sanford School of Public Policy’s Fleishman Commons at 6:15 p.m.The talk, “The U.S. Military Response in Today’s Middle East,” will address geopolitical challenges in the region’s ever-changing security environment. Peter Feaver, Duke professor of political science and public policy and director of the university’s Program in American Grand Strategy, will host the discussion.Abizaid was the longest-serving commander of the U.S. Central Command. He led military strategy and joint operations in 27 Middle East nations, the Horn of Africa and Central Asia before retiring as a four-star general in 2007.He also led international coalitions that operated in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Horn of Africa and the Persian Gulf. During 54 months spent in combat zones, he worked to advance regional military, counter-terrorist and counter-insurgency capabilities.“At a time when headlines tell the story of a rapidly unraveling security environment, Gen. Abizaid is especially well-qualified to speak on the geopolitical challenges in the Middle East,” Feaver said. “He served as the senior American military officer with responsibility for the broader Middle East theater of operations during a critical phase of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars,” Feaver said. “His personal experience and historical perspective will help us make sense of the new challenges dominating the news coverage today.”This event is sponsored by the Duke Program in American Grand Strategy and co-sponsored by the Sanford School of Public Policy, the Duke Department of Political Science, the Duke Islamic Studies Center, and the Duke International Relations Association. Parking will be available in the Public Policy Lot.