Frederic C. Hof
Resident Senior Fellow, Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East
TopicsDemocracy and human rights, Foreign and economic assistance to Arab countries, Syrian Conflict, US policy in the Middle East
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May 21, 2015In his May 19 briefing, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest leveled, in his own peculiar way, with the people of Syria: “... the President feels very strongly that the very significant problems that are faced by people in Syria, for…
May 19, 2015As noted in the May 18 MENASource article on civilian protection, an administration operationally inert in the face of Bashar al-Assad’s atrocities sees peril if Assad collapses too soon, which is to say nearly four years after President Barack Obama…
May 18, 2015That which is painfully clear amid the complexity of Syria's horrific conflict is the operational absence of the Obama administration in protecting Syrian civilians.
May 11, 2015Recent media reports indicate (if not conclude) that the anti-Islamic State (ISIS or ISIL) "train and equip" effort of the US Department of Defense will be based largely in Jordan and focused mainly on preparing Syrian fighters of tribal origin…
May 04, 2015The Los Angeles Times quotes Rafik Hariri Center Senior Fellow Frederic C. Hof on the US plan to arm Syrian opposition fighters to oppose ISIS and why the vetting process is slowing down progress:
Full BioFrederic C. Hof is a Resident Senior Fellow with the Atlantic Council's Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East.
On March 28, 2012 President Obama conferred on Hof the rank of Ambassador in connection with his new duties as Special Adviser for transition in Syria. Hof was previously the Special Coordinator for Regional Affairs in the US Department of State's Office of the Special Envoy for Middle East Peace, where he advised Special Envoy George Mitchell on the full range of Arab-Israeli peace issues falling under his purview and focusing on Syria-Israel and Israel-Lebanon matters. He joined the State Department in 2009 after serving as the President and CEO of AALC, limited company, an international business consulting and project finance firm formerly known as Armitage Associates LC.
Hof's professional life has focused largely on the Middle East. In 2001 he directed the Jerusalem field operations of the Sharm el-Sheikh Fact-Finding Committee headed by former US Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell and was the lead drafter of the Committee's 2001 report. In 1983, as a US Army officer, he helped draft the "Long Commission" report, which investigated the October 1983 bombing of the US Marine headquarters at Beirut International Airport. Both reports drew considerable international praise for fairness and integrity.
A 1969 graduate of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, Hof began his professional career as an Army officer. He is a Vietnam veteran and served as a US Army Middle East Foreign Area Officer, studying Arabic at the Foreign Service Institute in Tunisia and receiving a master's degree from the Naval Postgraduate School. He served as US Army Attaché in Beirut, Lebanon and later in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as Director for Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and Palestinian Affairs.
Hof has written extensively on Arab-Israeli issues. He is the author of Galilee Divided: The Israel-Lebanon Frontier, 1916-1984 (Westview Press, 1985); Line of Battle, Border of Peace? The Line of June 4, 1967 (Middle East Insight, 1999); and Beyond the Boundary: Lebanon, Israel and the Challenge of Change (Middle East Insight, 2000). He has also written many articles on Jordan Valley water issues. His writing on the Israel-Syria, Israel-Lebanon, and (by virtue of his work on the "Mitchell Committee") Israel-Palestinian tracks of the Middle East peace process has contributed positively to the body of literature promoting Arab-Israeli peace.
His awards include the Purple Heart, the Department of State Superior Honor Award, the Secretary of Defense Meritorious Civilian Service Medal, and the Defense Superior Service Medal. He resides in Silver Spring, Maryland with his wife, Brenda.