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James Zogby
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Dr. James J. Zogby is the author of Arab Voices (Palgrave Macmillan, October 2010) and the founder and president of the Arab American Institute (AAI), a Washington, D.C.-based organization which serves as the political and policy research arm of the Arab American community. Since 1985, Dr. Zogby and AAI have led Arab American efforts to secure political empowerment in the U.S. Through voter registration, education and mobilization, AAI has moved Arab Americans into the political mainstream.

For the past three decades, Dr. Zogby has been involved in a full range of Arab American issues. A co-founder and chairman of the Palestine Human Rights Campaign in the late 1970s, he later co-founded and served as the Executive Director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. In 1982, he co-founded Save Lebanon, Inc., a private non-profit, humanitarian and non-sectarian relief organization which funds health care for Palestinian and Lebanese victims of war, and other social welfare projects in Lebanon. In 1985, Zogby founded AAI.

In 1993, following the signing of the Israeli-Palestinian peace accord in Washington, he was asked by Vice President Al Gore to lead Builders for Peace, a private sector committee to promote U.S. business investment in the West Bank and Gaza. In his capacity as co-president of Builders, Zogby frequently traveled to the Middle East with delegations led by Vice President Gore and late Secretary of Commerce Ron Brown. In 1994, with former U.S. Congressman Mel Levine, his colleague as co-president of Builders, Zogby led a U.S. delegation to the signing of the Israeli-Palestinian agreement in Cairo. Zogby also chaired a forum on the Palestinian economy at the Casablanca Economic Summit in 1994. After 1994, through Builders, Zogby worked with a number of US agencies to promote and support Palestinian economic development, including AID, OPIC, USTDA, and the Departments of State and Commerce.

Dr. Zogby has also been personally active in U.S. politics for many years. Most recently, Zogby was elected a co-convener of the National Democratic Ethnic Coordinating Committee (NDECC), an umbrella organization of Democratic Party leaders of European and Mediterranean descent. On September 24, 1999, the NDECC elected Dr. James Zogby as its representative to the Democratic National Committee's Executive Committee. In 2005 he was appointed as chair of the DNC’s Resolutions Committee.

A lecturer and scholar on Middle East issues, U.S.-Arab relations, and the history of the Arab American community, Dr. Zogby appears frequently on television and radio. He has appeared as a regular guest on all the major network news programs. After hosting the popular "A Capital View" on the Arab Network of America for several years, he now hosts "Viewpoint with James Zogby" on Abu Dhabi Television, LinkTV, Dish Network, and DirecTV.

Since 1992, Dr. Zogby has also written a weekly column on U.S. politics for the major newspapers of the Arab world. The column, Washington Watch, is currently published in 14 Arab countries. He has authored a number of books including two recent publications, "What Ethnic Americans Really Think" and "What Arabs Think: Values, Beliefs and Concerns."

Dr. Zogby has testified before U.S. House and Senate committees, has been guest speaker on a number of occasions in the Secretary's Open Forum at the U.S. Department of State, and has addressed the United Nations and other international forums. He is the recipient of the Distinguished Public Service Award from the U.S. Department of State "in recognition of outstanding contributions to national and international affairs."

Dr. Zogby is also active professionally beyond his involvement with the Arab American community. He currently serves on the national advisory boards of the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Immigration Forum, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Additionally, he is a Senior Analyst for the polling firm Zogby International.

In 1975, Dr. Zogby received his doctorate from Temple University's Department of Religion, where he studied under the Islamic scholar Dr. Ismail al-Faruqi. He was a National Endowment for the Humanities Post-Doctoral Fellow at Princeton University in 1976, and on several occasions was awarded grants for research and writing by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Defense Education Act, and the Mellon Foundation. Dr. Zogby received a Bachelor of Arts from Le Moyne College. In 1995, Le Moyne awarded Zogby an honorary doctoral of laws degree, and in 1997 named him the college's outstanding alumnus.

Dr. Zogby is married to Eileen Patricia McMahon and is the father of five children.

You can follow Dr. Zogby on twitter at: www.twitter.com/AAIUSA

Entries by James Zogby

What Democrats Must Do to Win in November

(95) Comments | Posted April 19, 2014 | 8:13 AM

In this November's mid-term elections, the Democratic Party will be focused on winning back the governorships and legislatures in Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. They lost decisively in these battleground states in 2010, giving Republicans the opportunity to institute far-reaching changes in programs, benefits, and regulations that for generations had...

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Profiling Should End

(34) Comments | Posted April 12, 2014 | 10:28 AM

Because Arab Americans and American Muslims have been waiting to see when the Obama Administration would finally act to end Bush-era ethnic and religious profiling guidelines and practices, we were troubled to read press accounts this week indicating that Attorney General Eric Holder may be proposing to keep in place...

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Russell Conwell: His Theology of Wealth and Today's GOP

(157) Comments | Posted April 5, 2014 | 10:20 AM

I did my doctoral work at Temple University, whose founder was a nineteenth-century Baptist preacher, Russell Conwell. Conwell was, to be sure, an accomplished writer, a captivating preacher and a visionary entrepreneur, but the theology he helped to popularize was, in a word, disturbing. It provided divine justification for the...

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Biases Versus Realities

(40) Comments | Posted March 29, 2014 | 11:21 AM

Western biases are not only transparently self-serving and flat-out wrong, they can also be so annoying.

As an example, a few weeks back, the Washington Post featured a long lament by a British intellectual pointedly suggesting that because Europe was in decline, the world was witnessing the...

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The US-Saudi Meeting

(13) Comments | Posted March 22, 2014 | 11:27 AM

President Obama's upcoming meeting with Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah comes at a time when transformative developments are convulsing the regional and world order and relations between the US and the Kingdom have become strained. It is a situation that the President is smart to address.

For years now, the...

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Language Matters

(33) Comments | Posted March 15, 2014 | 10:47 AM

While reviewing polling data on Israeli and Palestinian attitudes towards the peace effort, what comes through clearly is the obvious disconnect between the views of both groups and the extent to which this divide is driven by the Israeli-centric language used in framing many of the issues.

The...

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AIPAC and CPAC Come to Town

(12) Comments | Posted March 8, 2014 | 9:12 AM

This past week, Washington hosted two of my least favorite annual events.

It began with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) who came to lobby for whatever the government of Israel might want at this particular moment. At week's end, the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) was in...

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Netanyahu's Games

(97) Comments | Posted March 1, 2014 | 9:25 AM

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu never tires of inventing new hoops through which he insists Palestinians jump. As he acknowledged a few weeks back, it's all part of a cynical game that he plays in an effort to kill the chances for peace.

First, he insisted on the need...

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The Ukrainian Struggle Is Right

(15) Comments | Posted February 22, 2014 | 9:17 AM

The Ukrainian struggle for independence speaks to me on so many levels. Because I know the history of the Ukraine, I understand their resentment and fear of their often domineering Russian neighbor. I also understand their deep attachment to their land, their culture and the story of their people.

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Jesse Jackson, 1984: A Transformative Campaign

(10) Comments | Posted February 15, 2014 | 4:44 AM

This past week I traveled to New York City to speak at an event honoring the 30th anniversary of the 1984 Jesse Jackson for President campaign. It was an opportunity to reflect on the remarkable political transformations made possible by that historic movement.

I remember the day, 30 years ago,...

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This Time Must Be Different

(12) Comments | Posted February 1, 2014 | 10:05 AM

Two decades after Israeli and Palestinian leaders signed an interim peace agreement in Washington, DC, the task of achieving a final resolution to the conflict has become significantly more difficult. Not only have the physical impediments to peace grown -- for example, the number of Israeli settlers living on occupied...

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Syria: Enough Is Enough

(35) Comments | Posted January 25, 2014 | 6:51 PM

I wish I could be optimistic about Geneva II, but I cannot. That it happened at all is good. But "good for what" remains unclear. Listening to the speeches at the opening session established quite convincingly that none of the participants were ready to deal with the reality of what...

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Myths That Are Impediments to Peace

(152) Comments | Posted January 18, 2014 | 9:51 AM

In a meeting I had this week with a congressional candidate, I was reminded of the power of the myths that define conventional wisdom about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the challenge they pose for rational discourse. In rapid succession my visitor rattled off a number of statements revealing how much...

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Take a Deep Breath

(13) Comments | Posted January 11, 2014 | 10:05 AM

At this point we have no idea what US Secretary of State John Kerry is going to propose to the Israelis and Palestinians. Because no comprehensive peace agreement is within reach, we are told that the Secretary is working, instead, on a "Framework Agreement." Precisely what this document will look...

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What American Hustle Doesn't Tell You About ABSCAM

(24) Comments | Posted January 4, 2014 | 10:15 AM

American Hustle, the hit comedy-caper film loosely based on ABSCAM, is currently showing in theaters nationwide. For those who haven't heard of the movie or who don't remember the late 1970's, ABSCAM was a sting operation organized by the FBI featuring operatives dressed up like Arab sheikhs. The FBI videotaped...

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The Challenges of the New Year

(11) Comments | Posted December 28, 2013 | 9:17 AM

A few months back, the Arab World was shaken by a New York Times article claiming to detail Obama Administration's efforts to disengage from the Middle East in order to facilitate its "pivot toward the East." It didn't matter that the President had just delivered his annual address the United...

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A Precarious Christmas

(5) Comments | Posted December 21, 2013 | 10:54 AM

In the face of growing insecurity, Christians throughout the Arab East will soon be celebrating Christmas. While the conditions they face today are as frightening as they were at the time when Jesus was born, there are bright spots, as well, that point the way forward.

Two thousand years...

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Mandela and Arafat II

(17) Comments | Posted December 14, 2013 | 10:43 AM

Last week, I wrote a piece about a poster that has been hanging in my office for more than two decades. It features a photo of Nelson Mandela embracing PLO Chairman Yasir Arafat taken when the two leaders first met following Mandela's release from prison. The poster also...

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Mandela and Arafat

(35) Comments | Posted December 9, 2013 | 9:24 AM

In late February of 1990, just two weeks after being released from prison, Nelson Mandela met with Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman Yasir Arafat. Afterwards Mandela spoke publicly of his affinity with the Palestinian people and his support for their struggle. He described the parallels between the two peoples' struggles for...

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What Iranians Think

(98) Comments | Posted December 7, 2013 | 9:01 AM

We've heard what Israel Prime Minister and members of the U.S. Congress think about the interim nuclear deal the Iranian government concluded with the P5 + 1. What we don't know is how the Iranian people will react? What do Iranians want from their newly elected government and how will...

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