WASHINGTON, DC – The Atlantic Council releases today the Middle East Strategy Task Force: Final Report of the Co-Chairs by former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright and former National Security Advisor Stephen J. Hadley. The report presents:

  • A Strategic Approach for the Middle East: a middle course between occupation and disengagement to break the debilitating cycle of violence in the region
  • A Compact where outside actor support for regional powers to bring to an end the civil wars is predicated on regional state action to address the root causes of the conflict
  • A Social Contract whereby governments in the region empower their citizens to realize their full potential

This bipartisan strategy demonstrates that US engagement in the region is both necessary and critical. In the report, Secretary Albright and Mr. Hadley conclude:

If there is a single take-away from this report, it is that the Middle East is not condemned to the current cycle of conflict. Although the situation is difficult, there is a distinct—if challenging—pathway that people in the region, along with supportive international partners, can take not only to address the current crises, but also to put the region on course for a future better than many might believe possible. Read more

Frederick Kempe, president and CEO of the Atlantic Council, says of the report: “Secretary Albright and Steve Hadley show the current violence and instability in the Middle East is not a crisis of the Middle East, but a crisis from the Middle East with global consequences. Their proposal for a strategic response emphasizes the need for leaders in the region to step up in ensuring a better future for their people, and calls on governments from around the world to support their efforts. The result will be a peaceful and prosperous region capable of standing as a site of innovation, trade, and positive global engagement.”

Please join us today at 12:00 p.m. for a discussion with Sec. Albright and Mr. Hadley on the report’s findings at the Atlantic Council, or watch it live.

For more information and interview requests, please contact Andrea Taylor at PRESS@AtlanticCouncil.org.


The Middle East Strategy Task Force (MEST), a bipartisan Atlantic Council initiative, aims to better understand the underlying dynamics behind the current crises in the region. It seeks to develop a new approach to the Middle East to support a stable, prosperous order based on legitimate, well-governed states that embrace the talent and potential of their people. To accomplish this, the Task Force emphasizes collaboration with international partners and experts—especially those in the Middle East.

The Atlantic Council is a nonpartisan organization that promotes constructive US leadership and engagement in international affairs based on the central role of the Atlantic community in meeting today’s global challenges. For more information, please visit AtlanticCouncil.org and follow us on Twitter @AtlanticCouncil.