Samuel Helfont

Senior Fellow - Program on the Middle East

Research Areas:

Islam, Saddam Hussein, religion, Insurgencies in Iraq 

Samuel Helfont is a Senior Fellow in the Foreign Policy Research Institute’s Program on the Middle East, and an Assistant Professor of Strategy and Policy at the Naval War College program at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA. His research focuses on international politics of the Middle East, especially Iraq and the Iraq Wars. Helfont is the author of Compulsion in Religion: Saddam Hussein, Islam, and the Roots of Insurgencies in Iraq (Oxford University Press, 2018), Yusuf Al-Qaradawi: Islam and Modernity (The Moshe Dayan Center/Tel Aviv University Press, 2009); and the FPRI monograph, The Sunni Divide: Understanding Politics and Terrorism in the Arab Middle East. He has written widely in publications such as Foreign Affairs, The Middle East JournalOrbis, The New Republic, The American Interest, and The Jewish Review of Books, among others. For more information, see



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