In the 12 years since a NATO airstrike led to Muammar Gadhafi’s death at the hands of rebel fighters, Libya has undergone civil war, a jihadist surge, division into substate entities ruled by rivals, and penetration by a congeries of outside powers eager for influence and control of Libya’s resources. These were clearly not the objectives of the massive Washington-centered intra-war planning process for post-conflict Libya. How and why has this happened? What are the current political and economic conditions in Libya? What are the requirements for a stability that has thus far been elusive? Join for a discussion that explores these questions and more, featuring Emaddedin Badi, Nonresident Senior Fellow with the Middle East Programs at the Atlantic Council, Mary Fitzgerald, Researcher and Non-Resident Scholar at the Middle East Institute, and Ben Fishman, Senior Fellow at The Washington Institute. Steven Simon, Senior Research Analyst at the Quincy Institute, will moderate.
Emadeddin Badi is a nonresident senior fellow with the Middle East Programs at the Atlantic Council, where he focuses primarily on U.S and European policies towards Libya and the wider geopolitical implications of the conflict. Previously, he was a nonresident scholar at the Counterterrorism and Extremism Program at the Middle East Institute and a Policy Leader Fellow at the School of Transnational Governance at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. Currently, he is also a Senior Analyst at the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime and an Advisor for Libya at the Geneva Centre for Security Sector Governance.
Mary Fitzgerald is a researcher and consultant specializing in the Euro-Mediterranean region with a particular focus on Libya. She serves as a non-resident scholar at the Middle East Institute. Mary has worked on Libya for more than a decade and has conducted research on the country for the International Crisis Group, the United States Institute of Peace, the European Council on Foreign Relations and the European Institute of the Mediterranean among others. Her areas of focus include Libya’s political transition and its energy sector. She has also researched the country’s Islamist currents.
Ben Fishman is a Senior Fellow at The Washington Institute and a member of the Linda and Tony Rubin Program on Arab Politics. He is also an adjunct assistance professor for security studies at Georgetown University. From 2009 to 2013, he served on the National Security Council, where he held several posts, including director for North Africa and Jordan; director for Libya; and executive assistant to Ambassador Dennis Ross. As director for Libya, he coordinated U.S. support for Libya's revolution. He also supported President Obama's 2013 visit to Jordan and coordinated the $1 billion U.S. assistance package to the Hashemite Kingdom.
Steven Simon is Senior Research Analyst at the Quincy Institute and the Robert E. Wilhelm Fellow at the MIT Centre for International Studies. Prior to this, he was Executive Director of the International Institute for Strategic Studies for the U.S. and Middle East. From 2011 to 2012 he served on the National Security Council staff as senior director for Middle Eastern and North African affairs. He also worked on the NSC staff 1994 – 1999 on counterterrorism and Middle East security policy. His most recent book, "Grand Delusion: The Rise and Fall of American Ambition in the Middle East", was published this spring.