Atlantic Dialogue

An opponent of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Emma Sky didn’t seem the most likely candidate to travel to Iraq to help with the reconstruction effort and become part of the United States led-regime change. How did this anti-war academic end up as key political advisor to the commanding general of U.S. Forces in Iraq?

On December 8, 2020, the Netherlands Atlantic Youth will organize a program with Emma Sky,  Director of the Yale World Fellows Program and former advisor to the U.S. military in Iraq and NATO’s International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, titled:

Atlantic Dialogue

Atlantic Dialogue aims to provide a platform to inspiring guests with a distinguished career in foreign affairs to share their insights with a new generation. Inspired by ‘town hall meetings’ in the United States, participants will play an interactive role at the event. Specifically, the program aims to engage students and young professionals in the age of 18-35 years on the celebration of 75 years of freedom and the importance of trans-Atlantic relations. During the program, participants will have opportunity to ask questions about Sky’s experiences in the Middle East, but also about her thoughts on current challenges affecting the region. What is her assessment of U.S.-Iran tensions, the Israeli-Gulf rapprochement, and President Trump’s ambition to downsize U.S. military presence in the region? Furthermore, what are Sky’s expectations of President-elect Biden’s Middle East policy?


Middle East expert Emma Sky is director of Yale’s Maurice R. Greenberg World Fellows Program and a Senior Fellow at the Jackson Institute. She is the author of the highly acclaimed The Unravelling: High Hopes and Missed Opportunities in Iraq (2015) and In a Time of Monsters: Travels Through a Middle East in Revolt (2019).

Sky served as advisor to the Commanding General of US Forces in Iraq from 2007-2010; as advisor to the Commander of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan in 2006; as advisor to the US Security Co-ordinator for the Middle East Peace Process in 2005; and as Governorate Co-ordinator of Kirkuk for the Coalition Provisional Authority, 2003-2004. Prior to that, Sky worked in the Palestinian territories for a decade, managing projects to develop Palestinian institutions; and to promote co-existence between Israelis and Palestinians.

In line with the current COVID-19 measures, we will host the program with a limited number of participants at the venue and provide the opportunity for others to participate in the livestream. Please register for the program via the link below. Would you like to interview Emma Sky in person? Submit your question in the registration form to win an invitation to the live program of Atlantic Dialogue!

This program is sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands

Details & registration


December 8, 2020


19:00 – 20:00 CEST


Platform TBA

Join us at Atlantic Dialogue

Foto: Flickr/The U.S. Army – Gen. Ray Odierno, Multi-National Force – Iraq commanding general, walks through a local market in Khalis, Iraq, with Soldiers from 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Jan. 24

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