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A nation must think before it acts.
Isobel Coleman is Senior Fellow for U.S. Foreign Policy at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, where she focuses on the Middle East and South Asia. She is also the director of the Council’s Women and Foreign Policy Program. She is the author and co-author of numerous publications, including Paradise Beneath Her Feet: How Women are Transforming the Middle East (Random House, 2010), Restoring the Balance: A Middle East Strategy for the Next President (Brookings Institution Press, 2008) and Strategic Foreign Assistance: Civil Society in International Security (Hoover Press, 2006). Her writings have also appeared in publications such as Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, The Washington Post, Financial Times, International Herald Tribune, USA Today, Christian Science Monitor, and online venues such as the Huffington Post. She is a frequent speaker at academic, business, and policy conferences. In 2010, she is also serving as a track leader for the Clinton Global Initiative. Prior to joining the Council on Foreign Relations, Dr. Coleman was CEO of a healthcare services company and a partner with McKinsey & Co. in New York. A Marshall Scholar, she holds a DPhil and MPhil in international relations from Oxford University and a BA in public policy and East Asian studies from Princeton University.
This essay is based on a lecture for a two-day History Institute for Teachers sponsored by FPRI’s Wachman Center in cooperation with the American Institute for History Education on U.S. Foreign Policy and the Modern Middle East.