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Ellen Laipson

Ellen Laipson is the director of the International Security program at the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. She joined GMU from the Stimson Center, where she was president and CEO (2002-2015) and continues as president emeritus and distinguished fellow. Her tenure at Stimson followed a quarter century of government service. She serves on a number of academic and other non-governmental boards related to international security and diplomacy, and is a weekly columnist for worldpoliticsreview.com. Her last post in government was vice chair of the National Intelligence Council (1997-2002). She also worked on the State Department’s policy planning staff, the National Security Council staff and the Congressional Research Service. A member of the Council on Foreign Relations, she currently serves on the advisory councils of the International Institute of Strategic Studies, the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Georgetown University’s Institute for the Study of Diplomacy and the Notre Dame International Security Center, and on the board of the Diplomacy Center Foundation. From 2003 to 2015, she was a member of the board of the Asia Foundation. She was a member of the CIA External Advisory Panel from 2006-2009, President Obama’s Intelligence Advisory Board from 2009-2013, and on the Secretary of State’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board 2011-2014. Laipson has an MA from the School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University and an AB from Cornell University.

Articles By Ellen Laipson

For a Hint of Biden’s Foreign Policy Plans, Look to Libya By Ellen Laipson - Nov 11, 2020

President-elect Joe Biden is no novice when it comes to the Middle East, or to foreign policy in general. He would probably relish the opportunity to reestablish friendly relations with world leaders, even those in Jerusalem and Riyadh who may believe they have the most to lose with Donald Trump’s defeat. But his advisors warn … Continue reading “For a Hint of Biden’s Foreign Policy Plans, Look to Libya”

The UAE-Israel Agreement Is a ‘Win-Win-Win,’ But Not for the Palestinians By Ellen Laipson - Aug 17, 2020

Three countries can celebrate the surprise decision by Israel and the United Arab Emirates to establish formal, normal relations. For Israel, official recognition by a major Arab country is an important achievement. The UAE, for its part, has demonstrated its leadership capabilities by getting out front and setting the agenda for Gulf countries, a few … Continue reading “The UAE-Israel Agreement Is a ‘Win-Win-Win,’ But Not for the Palestinians”

How to See Russia’s Bounty on US Troops: Historical Payback or White House Incompetence? By Ellen Laipson - Jul 12, 2020

If we are to properly understand the significance of the claim that Russia paid Taliban fighters a bounty for killing American soldiers in Afghanistan, we must acknowledge that the US had used similar tactics against Soviet troops. The difference between then and now is not what nations do to further their interests, but what they … Continue reading “How to See Russia’s Bounty on US Troops: Historical Payback or White House Incompetence?”