INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS EXPERT AND FORMER AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES TO SPEAK AT U OF A

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - Ambassador David L. Mack, Vice President of the Middle East Institute and a specialist in U.S foreign policy in the Arab world, will speak on "Middle East Challenges for the Bush Administration" at 2 p.m. on February 8 in Giffels Auditorium, Old Main. His lecture, sponsored by the King Fahd Middle East Studies Program, is free and open to the public.

During his term as Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates from 1986 to 1989, Mack was in charge of diplomatic contact with U.A.E. leaders on issues ranging from hostilities with Iran to billions of dollars in economic contracts and cultural exchange. Mack helped oversee diplomatic relations between the United States and 12 other governments, including Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and Syria, during his term as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs from 1990 to 1993. In addition, he provided political support for Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm and promoted U.S. business interests in the Middle East.

Since 1998, he has served as Vice President of the Middle East Institute, a Washington, D.C. -based organization formed in 1946 to promote a better understanding of the Middle East through hosting a wide variety of political, economic, and cultural programs.

"Ambassador Mack will bring an in-depth perspective on issues such as Gulf security and the Arab-Israeli peace process that the Bush administration will face in the Middle East. Opportunities abound for increasing our cultural understanding of a region that has always defied easy answers or solutions," said Vince Cornell, director of the Middle East Studies Program at the U of A.

Mack has established diplomatic relations with senior officials in all Arab countries, including Uzbekistan and Turkey, and his diplomatic assignments have taken him to Iraq, Jerusalem, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Saudi Arabia, and Tunisia. He has received both the meritorious and distinguished service awards from the President, as well as meritorious, superior and distinguished honor awards from the State Department.

A speaker at numerous conferences on international issues, Mack received a B.A. in government and an M.A. in Middle East studies from Harvard. He studied at the American University in Cairo as a Fulbright Scholar.

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