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The Race for Iran

Flynt Leverett – Biography

Flynt Leverett is a professor at Pennsylvania State University’s School of International Affairs and directs the Iran Project at the New America Foundation, where he is a Senior Research Fellow.  He is also a Visiting Scholar at Peking University’s School of International Studies.     

Dr. Leverett is a leading authority on the Middle East and Persian Gulf, U.S. foreign policy, and global energy affairs. From 1992 to 2003, he had a distinguished career in the U.S. government, serving as Senior Director for Middle East Affairs at the National Security Council, on the Secretary of State’s Policy Planning Staff, and as a CIA Senior Analyst. He left the George W. Bush Administration and government service in 2003 because of disagreements about Middle East policy and the conduct of the war on terror.

Dr. Leverett has written extensively on the politics, international relations, and political economy of the Middle East and Persian Gulf.  In a series of monographs, articles, and opinion pieces (many co-authored with Hillary Mann Leverett), he has challenged Western conventional wisdom on the Islamic Republic of Iran’s foreign policy and internal politics, documented the historical record of previous Iranian cooperation with the United States, and presented the seminal argument in American foreign policy circles for a U.S.-Iranian “grand bargain”.  His new book, Going to Tehran:  Why the United States Must Come to Terms with the Islamic Republic (also co-authored with Hillary Mann Leverett), will be published in 2012. 

Dr. Leverett has published opinion pieces in many high-profile venues, including The New York Times, POLITICO, and CNN, and contributes frequently to Foreign Policy.  He has been interviewed about Iran and its geopolitics on leading public affairs programs around the world, including Charlie Rose, The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, Empire and Riz Khan (Al Jazeera English), Viewpoint (Abu Dhabi Television), Spotlight (Russia Today) and Washington Journal (C-Span), as well as in leading publications such as Der Spiegel and Le Monde. Along with Hillary Mann Leverett, he was featured in the PBS Frontline documentary, “Showdown With Iran”, and profiled in Esquire magazine.

Dr. Leverett has spoken about U.S.-Iranian relations at foreign ministries and strategic research centers in Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates. He has been a visiting professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Yale University.

Dr. Leverett holds a Ph.D. in politics from Princeton University and is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

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