About the program

The Atlantic Council is leading a long-term initiative on Iraq led by Dr. Abbas Kadhim. The Iraq Initiative seeks to provide US and European policymakers with unique perspectives from within Iraq as well as impartial, pragmatic policy recommendations. The Iraq Initiative addresses the current security challenges Iraq faces as well as identifies policies that will unlock Iraq’s potential to develop the drivers of any successful society: inclusive politics, economic development, and a vibrant civil society. It is critical that international conversation about Iraq moves from being solely focused on security and military engagement to broader policy issues such as attracting investment, improving governance and service delivery, and the country’s unique geopolitical role. The Iraq Initiative also works to develop relationships with Iraqi officials to bring them together with the right US and European policymakers and influencers to discuss how to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.

Featured commentary & analysis

Featured in-depth research & reports

Experts

Advisory Committee

  • Ambassador Feisal al-Istrabadi, Founding Director, Center for the Study of the Middle East, Indiana University, Bloomington
  • Ambassador Rend al-Rahim, Former Iraqi Ambassador to the United States
  • Mr. Stephen J. Hadley, Former US National Security Advisor
  • Mr. Majid Jafar, CEO, Crescent Petroleum
  • Ambassador Srood Najib, Former Head, Multilateral Department, Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Dr. Meghan O’Sullivan, Kirkpatrick Professor of the Practice of International Affairs, Kennedy School, Harvard University
  • General David Petraeus, Chairman, KKR Global Institute
  • Ambassador Samir Sumaidaie, Former Iraqi Ambassador to the United States

Past events

Thu, Jan 9, 2020

US-Iran tensions rising with Iraq in the middle

The Atlantic Council’s Iraq Initiative and Future of Iran Initiative hosted a conversation on US-Iran tensions and the impact on Iraq with Congressman Seth Moulton and Senator Chris Murphy.

2:00pm Washington

Thu, Nov 21, 2019

Roundtable with KRG Head of Foreign Relations Department Safeen Dizayee

The Atlantic Council’s Iraq Initiative hosted a private discussion with the Kurdistan Regional Government’s top diplomat to discuss recent events in Iraq.

10:00am Washington DC

Fri, Nov 1, 2019

Iraq’s political and energy outlook

On November 1, the Atlantic Council’s Iraq Initiative and Global Energy Center hosted an event on what’s next for Iraq amidst historic protests.

9:00am Washington DC

Wed, Oct 2, 2019

Roundtable with Iraqi National Security Adviser Falih Al-Fayyadh

The Iraq Initiative hosted Iraqi National Security Advisor Falih Al-Fayyadh for a conversation about US-Iraq relations and efforts to integrate the militias into the armed forces.

4:00pm Washington DC

Tue, Sep 10, 2019

A conversation with Iraqi Ambassador Fareed Yasseen

The Atlantic Council’s Iraq Initiative hosted a conversation with Iraqi Ambassador Fareed Yasseen.

12:00pm

Tue, Aug 6, 2019

A view from Iraq: A conversation with Iraqi MP Sarkawt Shamsulddin

On August 6, the Atlantic Council Iraq Initiative hosted Iraqi Council of Representatives Member Sarkawt Shamsulddin for a public event.

12:00pm

Wed, Jun 26, 2019

Arab Barometer Polling Data Event

On June 26, the Hariri Center, in collaboration with Arab Barometer, held a public event to release Arab Barometer’s latest public opinion survey data from Iraq, Lebanon, and Jordan. Following their presentation, Arab Barometer experts Mark Tessler and Kathrin Thomas joined Iraq Initiative Director Abbas Kadhim and Nonresident Senior Fellow Faysal Itani for a panel […]

Event Recap by Atlantic Council

Iraq Middle East
mickmulroy

Sat, Jun 1, 2019

Private Roundtable on Iraq with DASD Mick Mulroy

On May 7, the Iraq Initiative hosted Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Middle East Michael “Mick” Mulroy for a private, off-the-record discussion on Iraq. Middle East Programs Director William F. Wechsler moderated the conversation.

Insights & Impact by

Iraq Middle East

Fri, Jul 19, 2019

Private virtual roundtable with Al-Bayan Center on US-Iraq relations

On July 19, the Atlantic Council’s Iraq Initiative hosted a roundtable with Al-Bayan Center, a think tank based in Baghdad. Iraq Initiative Director Dr. Abbas Kadhim moderated the conversation. The participants from Al-Bayan joined by videoconference.

Event Recap by Atlantic Council

Economy & Business Energy & Environment

All content

Wed, Jan 29, 2020

Slavin joins Foreign Affairs Inbox to discuss Iran’s response to death of Soleimani

Barbara Slavin of the Future of Iran Initiative at the Atlantic Council joins George Washington University’s Foreign Affairs Inbox to explore future paths in US-Iran relations after the death of Soleimani.

In the News by Atlantic Council

Iran Middle East

Mon, Jan 27, 2020

Why mediation between Saudi Arabia and Iran keeps failing

Mediating between Saudi Arabia and Iran means changing the balance of power in a way that pleases both countries.

IranSource by Banafsheh Keynoush

Iran Middle East

Fri, Jan 24, 2020

China’s Persian Gulf strategy: Keep Tehran and Riyadh content

The current tensions between Washington and Tehran have been a major stress test for China’s Persian Gulf strategy.

MENASource by Julia Gurol and Jacopo Scita

China Iran

Thu, Jan 23, 2020

Slavin joins WorldAffairs to discuss US-Iran tensions

Barbara Slavin of the Future of Iran Initiative at the Atlantic Council joins WorldAffairs co-host Ray Suarez to talk about what US actions mean for the Middle East and the rest of the world.

In the News by Atlantic Council

Iran Middle East

Thu, Jan 23, 2020

Oman’s new sultan and US-Iran tensions

In the region today there are incredibly turbulent waters which will further test Muscat’s ability to strike a delicate balance in its foreign policy of non-alignment.

IranSource by Giorgio Cafiero

Iran Middle East

Wed, Jan 22, 2020

Perennial repression, mourning, and despair consume Iran

With no hint of reform on the horizon, demonstrations, counter-demonstraions, and repression will remain a component of an unstable Islamic Republic of Iran.

IranSource by Masoud Mostajabi

Iran Middle East

Tue, Jan 21, 2020

Slavin joins Phoenix TV (Chinese) to discuss Iran’s retaliation strategy against the United States

In the News by Atlantic Council

Chinese Conflict

Fri, Jan 17, 2020

Slavin joins Alhurra (Arabic) to discuss Iran policy

In the News by Atlantic Council

Arabic Iran

Thu, Jan 16, 2020

Slavin joins CBS to discuss consequences of the death of Soleimani

In the News by Atlantic Council

Iran Middle East

Wed, Jan 15, 2020

Wechsler quoted in VOA on Iran protests

In the News by Atlantic Council

Civil Society Iran