June 2016

In This Edition

• Message from President Mark T. Clark, Ph.D.
• REGISTER NOW: Ninth Annual ASMEA Conference
• FORTHCOMING ISSUE: Journal of the Middle East and Africa
• ASMEA Book Note Reviews
• Featured News by ASMEA Members
• Member Updates
• Announcements of Interest
• ASMEA Job Bank


Dear Friends:

For scholars and students of the Middle East and Africa, summer break typically augurs in either a chance to relax or, more likely, an opportunity to pursue ongoing research in our regions of study and in archives and libraries around the world. This year we’re pleased to support 50 independent research projects in diverse locales from the Sahel to the Levant and the British Archives. We wish all of our scholars engaged in expanding the body of knowledge good luck and look forward to hearing about your adventures.

At ASMEA headquarters, we are working hard to assemble the schedule of events for the upcoming Ninth Annual ASMEA Conference. That schedule now includes a keynote address on "The Pathology of Middle Eastern Studies Today," by Prof. Martin Kramer, President of Shalem College and author of Ivory Towers on Sand. Prof. Kramer, a favorite student of our esteemed chairman, Prof. Bernard Lewis, also penned several essays, including "Master Historian of the Middle East" in Mosaic, on the recent occasion of Prof. Lewis' 100th birthday.

With over 140 scholarly presentations and roundtable discussions on timely topics like "Water and War: A New Conflict for the Middle East" (sponsored by Marine Corps University Press); "Assessing Iran-Saudi Tensions;" and "Fire in the Desert: Jihad in the Sahel," the Conference will be another stimulating event. Like last year, it is expected to sell-out. Please reserve your seat and REGISTER NOW to ensure your attendance.

If you haven't had a chance to view the video library from last year's Conference, as well as previous ASMEA events, I also encourage you to do so.

Last, wherever you are we want to hear from you. Please stay in touch. Share news of your latest achievements and ask for one of our many books available for review. It is our pleasure to promote the work of our members, reinforce our vibrant professional networks, and expand the discussion on our fields of study but we can’t do it without your input.

With best wishes for a productive summer season,


Mark T. Clark, Ph.D.
President, ASMEA
Professor of Political Science
Director, National Security Studies Program, California State University, San Bernardino

REGISTER NOW: Ninth Annual ASMEA Conference
Taking the Long View: Assessing Change in the Middle East and Africa
October 27-29, 2016
Key Bridge Marriott Hotel * Washington, D.C.

  • KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Prof. Martin Kramer, President, Shalem College and author, Ivory Towers on Sand, will speak on "The Pathology of Middle Eastern Studies Today."
  • Panel presentations on scholarly topics from Middle Eastern and African studies, and related disciplines.
  • Roundtable discussions on:
    • "Water and War: A New Conflict for the Middle East" (sponsored by Marine Corps University Press)
    • "Assessing Iran-Saudi Tensions"
    • "Fire in the Desert: Jihad in the Sahel"
  • Banquet luncheon and professional networking reception.
  • Film screenings.
  • Displays by publishers of the latest academic titles.
  • Still more to come!

Register HERE. Become an ASMEA Member HERE. Book your hotel room HERE.

FORTHCOMING ISSUE: Journal of the Middle East and Africa

ASMEA is pleased to announce the upcoming release of the next issue of our peer-reviewed, academic journal.  Below is the full table of contents for Volume 7, Issue 2 (April-July 2016):

Palestinian Engagement with the International Criminal Court: From Preliminary Examination to Investigation?
(Robert P. Barnidge, Jr.)

The Caliphate’s Gold: The Islamic State’s Monetary Policy and Its Implications
(Ian Oxnevad)

IGAD, Sudan, and South Sudan: Achievements and Setbacks of Regional Mediation
(Irit Back)

Sexual Exploitation and Abuse in UN Peacekeeping Missions: A Case Study of MONUC and MONUSCO
(Bonnie Kovatch)

The African Union’s Diaspora Diplomacy and Policymaking: Operationalizing the Migration-Development Nexus
(Jack R. Mangala)

Allāh (God), al-Watan (the Nation), al-Malik (the King), and the Role of Ijtihād in Family Law Reforms of Morocco
(Miyase Yavuz)

Together on the Way to the Monastic Church of Mīt Damsīs: Copts and Muslims at the Mūlid of Saint George in Medieval Islamic Egypt and Beyond
(Myriam Wissa)

Book Reviews
How Long Will South Africa Survive?
By R.W. Johnson
Reviewed by J. Peter Pham

How South Africa Works: And Must Do Better
By Jeffrey Herbst and Greg Mills
Reviewed by J. Peter Pham

The Real Politics of the Horn of Africa: Money, War and the Business of Power
By Alex de Waal    
Reviewed by Gérard Prunier

All dues-paying members of ASMEA receive the Journal of the Middle East and Africa.  For more information on becoming an ASMEA member, click HERE.

ASMEA Book Note Reviews

A Quest in the Middle East: Gertrude Bell and the Making of Modern Iraq
by Liora Lukitz
(London: I.B. Tauris, 2014 [2006]) 320 pp.
Reviewed by Dr. Justin Fantauzzo, Assistant Professor, History Department, Memorial University of Newfoundland

Understanding Contemporary Ethiopia: Monarchy, Revolution and the Legacy of Meles Zenawi
By Gérard Prunier and Eloi Ficquet (editors).
(New York: Oxford University Press, 2015) 521 pp.
Reviewed by Mr. Christopher Bailey, National Intelligence University

Boko Haram: Nigeria’s Islamist Insurgency
By Virginia Comolli
(London: C. Hurst & Company, Ltd., 2015) 239 pp.
Reviewed by Dr. Benjamin Arah, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Government & Philosophy, Bowie State University

Between Terror and Tolerance: Religious Leaders, Conflict, and Peacemaking
by Timothy D. Sisk, ed.
(Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 2011) 280 pp.
Reviewed by Ms. Rachel Winter, M.A. Candidate, University of Iowa, Department of Religious Studies

The Reckoning of Pluralism: Political Belonging and the Demands of History in Turkey
by Kabir Tambar
(Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 2014) 218 pp.
Reviewed by Mr. Maurizio Geri, Ph.D. Candidate in International Studies, Old Dominion University

Military History of Late Rome: 284-361
by Ilkka Syvanne
(South Yorkshire, UK: Pen & Sword Military, 2015) 435 pp.
Reviewed by Dr. Wyndham Whynot, Professor of History, Livingstone College

Would you like to receive free books and write reviews on recently released Middle Eastern and African studies publications?  If you are interested in participating in the ASMEA Book Notes program, email info@asmeascholars.org for writing requirements and a list of available titles.


Featured News by ASMEA Members

Prof. Lawrence P. Rubin, “An ISIS Containment Doctrine,” The National Interest, (6/14/2016)
Dr. Farhad Rezaei, “Nuclear Pakistan vs. Nuclear Iran: There’s No U.S. Double Standard,” The National Interest, (6/3/2016)
Dr. Robert Barnidge, Jr., "A Century after Sykes-Picot, France Still Hasn’t Learned," The National Interest, (5/17/2016)
Dr. J. Peter Pham, "Whither the 'Democratic' Congo's Democracy?,” The Hill, (4/12/2016)

Please share your next opinion piece or media hit on the Middle East or Africa with us. Email your links to info@asmeascholars.org.



Dr. Nikolay Kozhanov has just published his latest research paper, “Civil War in Syria and the Evolution of Russian-Iranian Relations,” co-authored by Prof. Piotr Dutkiewicz, with the Emirates Policy Center.

Prof. Joseph Spoerl’s review of Matthias Küntzel’s "Germany and Iran: From the Aryan Axis to the Nuclear Threshold" has been published by the Jewish Political Studies Review and they also have published his article “Whitewashing Palestine to Eliminate Israel: The Case of the One-State Advocates.”

Prof. Robert Lieber, of Georgetown University, has just published his latest book, Retreat and its Consequences: American Foreign Policy and the Problem of World Order.

Prof. Banu Eligur published her article, “The 1934 anti-Jewish Thrace riots: the Jewish exodus of Thrace through the lens of nationalism and collective violence,” in the British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies. She also has published her article, “Political Islam,” in The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity, and Nationalism.

Dr. Shaul Bartal published his latest article “The Danger of Israel According to Sheikh Yusuf Qaradawi“ in the journal, Israel Affairs. His article, “Yom Kippur War Influence at the PLO Recognition and the Palestinian Problem” was also published in the journal, History Research (Volume 5, Number 4, Oct.-Dec. 2015). In addition, his new book, Jihad in Palestine: Political Islam and the Israeli-Arab Conflict, was recently released by Routledge.  

Col. Norvell De Atkine (USA, ret.) published the paper “'Muhammad Taught Us How to Fight'”: The Islamic State and Early Islamic Warfare Tradition” in the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA), a peer-reviewed journal of the Rubin Center for Research in International Affairs at IDC Herzliya. This paper also was presented at the Eighth Annual ASMEA Conference in 2015.

Dr. Guita Hourani recently published two books, In Line with the Divine”: The Struggle for Gender Equality in Lebanon (Abelian Academic) and The Kurds of Lebanon: Socioeconomic Mobility and Political Participation via Naturalization, translated into Persian by Ali Mohammadian.

Dr. Robert Barnidge, Jr.’s new book, Self-Determination, Statehood, and the Law of Negotiation: The Case of Palestine, was just published by Hart Publishing, Oxford, UK.

Prof. D Gershon Lewental has assumed the role of Associate Editor at the Journal of Persianate Studies, the flagship publication of the Association for the Study of Persianate Societies, published by Brill.

We are very interested in the activities of our members.  If you have upcoming publications, were awarded a fellowship or received a research grant and would like to share the news with your ASMEA colleagues, contact us at info@asmeascholars.org or 202.429.8860.


The Summer Critical Language Institute is currently underway. Find out more about the Middle East South Asia Language Institute. MESALI professors comprise a rich variety of native speakers with decades of professional training experience. They offer cutting edge language skills and specializations, and custom tailored instruction for individuals preparing to take the foreign service officer language exam; providing the MESALI bump to those waiting on the FSO waiting list. They provide official assessments to Fulbright, Borne and other scholarship applicants, as well as university students seeking language placement examinations and waivers. For decades, they developed official language materials for the U.S. government, and official written translations and live interpretation. Highly trained and qualified Adjunct Professors apply standards of the Inter-agency Language Roundtable (ILR) and the American Councils for International Education. MESALI offers daytime & evening courses. The daytime 120 hour program combines two university semesters into just ten-weeks. The evening courses provide 60 and 90 hour options, equivalent to 1 and 1.5 university semesters. The program enables students to hold part-time internships and jobs. MESALI can provide housing. Visit www.dcinternationals.com/schedule for class schedule.

Applications are now being accepted through July 5, 2016 for the spring 2016 competition of the Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Program (CADFP). Accredited universities in Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa and Uganda can submit a project request online to host a scholar. Scholars born in Africa, who live in the United States or Canada and work in an accredited college or university in either of those two countries, can apply online to be placed on a roster of available candidates for a fellowship. Scholars must hold a terminal degree in their field and may hold any academic rank. Please contact Jeremy Coats, Program Officer, Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Program (CADFP) at africandiaspora@iie.org

The 2017-2018 Fulbright U.S Scholar Program competition to the Middle East and North Africa is underway! Each year, U.S. scholars in a wide variety of academic disciplines teach and/or conduct research at educational institutions across the Middle East and North Africa. Beyond their specific research or teaching objectives, Fulbright Scholars to the region build relationships that serve as the foundation for future collaborations and increase mutual understanding across cultures. Applications for 2017-18 are currently being accepted from all levels of faculty, including early career, and professionals. Applicants must be U.S. citizens and the deadline for complete applications is August 1, 2016. Contact middleeastnorthafrica@iie.org with any questions.

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To access the Job Bank, first log into www.asmeascholars.org and follow the link from the “Services” tab in the drop-down menu.  Institutions interested in placing job opportunities in the ASMEA Job Bank should e-mail info@asmeascholars.org.


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