His Royal Highness Prince Talal bin Muhammad is one of the world’s most distinguished, experienced and multi-faceted experts on global affairs today. He is Special Advisor to King Abdullah II of Jordan, serving as his most trusted counsel on critical intelligence, military and foreign policy issues. Previously, he was National Security Advisor to the late King Hussein, cementing his unprecedented credentials and skills as the Director of Jordan’s first-ever National Security Council. Personally selected by the King to establish the agency, Prince Talal garnered wide accolades for creating an elite organization that effectively fused intelligence and operations. He also served as King Hussein’s key diplomatic envoy to the U.S. during one of the most significant periods in Jordan’s history.

An adroit statesman and brilliant strategist, Prince Talal has been instrumental in many historic events including the Jordan-Israeli Peace Treaty of 1994 and U.S. diplomatic missions following the 1991 Gulf War. He has briefed and advised presidents, prime ministers, and other world leaders on issues of vital import and skillfully navigated negotiations and resolutions affecting nations and citizens across the globe. With an extraordinary career serving two of the world’s most eminent leaders during times of epic change and events, Prince Talal’s vast experience, astute intellect and incomparable acumen provide an unmatched depth and breadth to his penetrating insight and fresh perspective of contemporary complex geo-political issues. With the world’s eyes on the continually evolving events in the Middle East, there is no one more compelling, convivial, authentic, and thought-provoking to educate and engage audiences than Prince Talal.

SPEAKER TOPICS
ABOUT HRH Prince Talal bin Muhammad of Jordan   (+/-)

Informed with a Global Perspective

A skilled commander with a remarkable record of achievement, Prince Talal is a graduate of the prestigious Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in the United Kingdom. He later earned a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science degree focused on U.S. Policy and Diplomacy from Georgetown University’s renowned School of Foreign Service. Upon further training in Britain and the U.S., Prince Talal returned to the Jordanian Army and served as Company Commander in the army’s Special Forces unit. In 2009, he was promoted to the rank of Major-General.

Venerable Religious Lineage

Prince Talal is the eldest son of Prince Muhammad, the younger brother of the late King Hussein and the grandson of the late King Talal. He is a direct descendent of the Prophet Muhammad and has performed the Hajj (Greater Pilgrimage) to Mecca twice, and the ‘Umrah (Lesser Pilgrimage) more than ten times.

Distinguished Emissary and Trusted Counsel to Kings

Upon his departure from the Jordanian Army, Prince Talal was appointed Military Secretary to King Hussein, rapidly earning the King’s trust and expanded duties including intelligence liaison activities and confidential political missions. Subsequently, he served as the King’s Personal Representative to the U.S., which involved sophisticated intelligence initiatives and enhancing diplomatic relations with the U.S. Administration, Congress and Government. Prince Talal concurrently held this post with his appointment to the National Security Council, which he led until August 1999, when he was selected as National Security Advisor for King Abdullah II, King Hussein’s successor.

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SPEAKER TOPIC DESCRIPTIONS    (+/-)

The U.S. in the Middle East: Current Analysis from One of the World’s Foremost Intelligence Strategists

The Obama administration continues to face an ever-growing daunting slate of foreign policy challenges: war in Afghanistan; turmoil and unrest in North Africa and the Middle East; a global struggle against al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups; nuclear development by Iran; an expansionist China; an increasingly assertive, resurgent Russia and the rise of regional hegemonies in Iran, Turkey and Israel. As Jordan’s former diplomatic envoy to the U.S. and current senior advisor to King Abdullah II, Prince Talal possess the unique ability to view issues through both lenses. Here, he surveys the current situation for the U.S. and its vital interests in the region, and outlines actions President Obama and Congress must take to promote stability at home and abroad. With candid commentary, stunning brilliance and profound expertise, Prince Talal highlights the obstacles and opportunities for global peace and security that lay ahead in the Middle East.

The “Arab Spring” Beyond the Headlines

Despite its sanguine moniker, the “Arab Spring” has been anything but rosy. The Islamic world is in revolution, revolt and fraught with treacherous instability. While this situation has been played out in years past, this time is transformational. From Islamabad to Casablanca, the peoples of the Arab world are restlessly arising as never before in a way that will permanently impact international stability, politics, development, and finance for the foreseeable future. Is democracy really desirable in the Arab/Muslim world? Is democracy a positive trend, a facilitator of political Islam, or merely the last form of neo-colonialism? Drawing from his unparalleled experience and first-hand knowledge, Prince Talal probes the true nature of the Arab uprisings – country by country and collectively as a region – to offer authoritative insight and unprecedented perspective on their significance and impact now and for the future.

Three Steps Forward and Two Steps Back: The Struggle for Peace in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

A pivotal figure in the tumultuous geo-political landscape of the Middle East, Prince Talal is intimately familiar with the key players, principles and policies in the conflict between Israel and Palestine and how the interconnected complexities will ultimately shape and inform any lasting peace. In this riveting exploration of the ongoing process, Prince Talal explains why this crisis in the Middle East is one of the most significant issues facing the international community and how the turmoil in other Arab countries can impact prospects for a comprehensive peace. Fascinating and enlightening, Prince Talal expounds on the myriad factors at work, offering exceptional insight, gripping anecdotes and shrewd analysis of a prospective truce in this entrenched, contentious relationship.

The U.S. and the Islamic World: Insight from an Insider

As the dynamic forces of change sweep across the Middle East, the lines of friend and foe, ally and enemy are constantly shifting. In this timely, eye-opening presentation, Prince Talal examines the increasingly pervasive and bold world of political and militant Islam including the “new battlelines” in the Horn of Africa (Somalia and Yemen) and what it means for the U.S. and its interests. Is the rise of aggressive, militant Islam in West Africa a pressing concern? Can and should the U.S. build a successful relationship with political Islamist parties and leaders?

As a witness and participant in global negotiations at the highest levels, Prince Talal is keenly aware of the challenges American presidents face in fully understanding the motives and intentions of Middle Eastern leaders and the difficulty of recognizing the rare, fleeting moments when these rulers relent to act in more conciliatory ways that can lead to significant breakthroughs. With globalization, security and economic stability requiring an ever increasing level of interaction between the West and the Middle East, Prince Talal offers unmatched insight and perspective into the Islamic world.

Islam: History, Beliefs, and Practices from Classical Times to the Impact of Modernity

Islam is the world’s second most practiced religion after Christianity yet significant confusion about it pervades most cultures outside Muslim circles. Conflicting information about its tenets, traditions, beliefs and value system run rampant and its evolution and application to modern times misconstrued. A direct descendent of the Prophet Muhammad, Prince Talal elucidates the circumstances that have affected the Islamic world over the years and how these events have contributed to the inception and growth of “Islamic Fundamentalism” – an aberration in Islamic history, tradition, and thought. Prince Talal also addresses the “Clash of Civilizations,” whether it is inevitable, or even a reality, and ways in which the conflict between extremists elements of the Islamic World and the West may successfully find an effective and enduring détente.

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