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Avi Melamed

Avi Melamed, former Israeli Senior Official on Arab Affairs and former Intelligence Official and educator, is today, an Independent Middle East Strategic Intelligence Analyst, Regional Expert and lecturer specializing in the current affairs of the Arab and Muslim world and their impact on Israel and the region.

Avi has most recently been appointed the Fellow of Intelligence and Middle East Affairs for the Eisenhower Institute in Washington DC where among other responsibilities he leads a year-long program entitled Inside the Middle East – Intelligence Perspectives, designed to ensure that the next generation to be in positions of influence in the United States will have a more intimate understanding of the Middle East and will apply methods of critical thinking regarding Middle East Affairs in a way that will result in a more accurate reading the Middle East reality and which will better serve the West’s interest.

In his work as an analyst Avi provides intelligence analysis, briefings and tours to diplomats, Israeli and foreign policy makers, international media outlets as well as a wide variety of organizations and private clients on a range of Israel and Middle East affairs.

His analysis, tours and briefings, based on Arab sources, decades of field experience, policy design and intimate connections throughout the Arab world, offer an insider’s view of the constantly-changing Middle East landscape and future regional implications.

Avi is also the founder and creator of Feenjan – Israel speaks Arabic, a non-profit initiative which presents contemporary Israeli society and culture to the Arab world in Arabic, and serves as an online platform for Israelis and Arabs to discover and discuss issues of common interest.

In the private sector Avi facilitates relationships between Israeli and international firms and potential partners in the Arab world.

Avi’s expertise includes: The Arab awakening; Arab perspectives on Israel; Emerging challenges and opportunities in the Middle East; Evolving forces in the region and their current and future impact on Israel’s strategic environment, etc.

Fluent in Arabic and Israeli- Jew with a unique understanding of Arab society and culture, Avi spent almost thirty years living in Arab cities and communities throughout the region, often in high-risk positions at sensitive times. He held various Intelligence and Counterterrorism field positions in delicate areas on behalf of the Israeli Defense Forces, the Israeli government, and Israeli security and intelligence services including the Mossad, Shabak, and 8200. During the first Intifada he was appointed the youngest-ever Deputy Advisor on Arab affairs to the Mayor of Jerusalem, Teddy Kollek, and later he served in the Ehud Olmert administration as Senior Advisor. He was instrumental in developing Israeli policy in and around Jerusalem and represented the city in local and international forums.

Avi’s unique experience, outstanding analytical abilities, profound understanding of the Arab world and the Arabic language – coupled with direct access to sources, resources and networks throughout the Arab world and intimate connections with local and regional intelligence resources has allowed him to keep his finger on the pulse on the Arab world that has resulted in a proven record of foreseeing the evolution of events as well as their impact on a local and regional level.

Through all of Avi’s efforts, as a speaker, an analyst, a writer, and an entrepreneur, he is a bridge builder. He dedicates himself to enhancing the Arabic, English and Hebrew speaking audience’s comprehensive understanding of the Middle East and of each other. Avi has authored two books, Separate and Unequal – Israel’s rule in East Jerusalem, published by Harvard University Press and Ubrusi, A Novel. He is a frequent guest on English and Arabic networks including Al Jazeera and BBC Arabic, his articles are translated into multiple languages and are available on international news websites and Wikistrat – Next Generation Strategy where he is a Senior Analyst.

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