April –June 2019
In the first week of April, an interview AMCD co-chair Tom Harb gave to Al-Alam TV (Iran) was picked up and translated by MEMRI. Mr. Harb stated that the Palestinians began with their refusals to peace with Israel with the 1947 Partition Plan, and he explained that Arab countries are starting to think about their own interest since the Palestinians haven't offered any solutions. The cautious optimism toward the Trump peace plan on the part of several Arab states have proven Mr. Harb right in his analysis.
AMCD applauded Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for designating the IRGC as a terrorist organization. This was something AMCD had lobbied for over the previous two years. The Pasdaran, naturally, responded by calling for attacks on Americans and Christians in Iraq.
Ali Mansour, the notorious Hezbollah propagandist in Detroit, attacked AMCD advisor, Dr. Walid Phares (again). This time, Sheikh Mohamed Hajj Hassan, leader of the Muslim American Alliance, came to Dr. Phares’ defense. And in an interview with al-Riyadh, Dr. Phares explained how the other Islamist lobby, that of the Muslim Brotherhood supported by Qatar, also has deep roots of influence in the US.
AMCD board member, Dr. Ashley Ansara, discussed President Trump’s “deal of the century” between Israel and the Palestinians almost a year before it was released.
AMCD co-chair John Hajjar issued a statement of support when the Trump administration announced efforts to break up Hezbollah’s international financing network. Mr. Hajjar was also quoted in this article about the steadily declining Christian population in the Middle East. AMCD advisor Ken Timmerman wrote in support of the administration’s policy of warning Iran not to target Americans in Iraq.
AMCD principals held meetings with the State Department and NSC on Lebanon and Iran. AMCD vice-chair, Hossein Khorram met with Andrew Peek on Iran. He later moved to the NSC European and Russian affairs to replace Fiona Hill. In January 2020, he was escorted from the White House and placed on leave due to security concerns.
AMCD came out in strong support of the legitimate President of Venezuela, Juan Guaido.
AMCD advisor, Dr. Walid Phares explained the Trump administration’s strategy to contain Iran in the Arabic paper Independent Arabiya. The English summary is here. Dr. Phares also pointed to the success of Dubai as a good indicator of where the Arab world is heading – toward greater openness and tolerance of the greater world.
Dr. Ashley Ansara spoke to Turkish media about the US stance toward Iran.
AMCD members met with many members of Congress and the State Department on May 29. Nader Moumneh presented his book on the history of the Lebanese Forces to several members of Congress. We held a dinner that evening at the Capitol Hill Club with members of the diplomatic community and endorsed AMCD co-chair John Hajjar to become the US ambassador to Lebanon.
We also note that Secretary Pompeo spoke in California and Andrew Peek met again with AMCD vice-chair Hossein Khorram there. The State Department invited many pro-Iran deal and donors to the Democratic Party to Secretary Pompeo’s speech. Not for the first time, pro-Trump Iranians of AMCD were frozen out. Career staffers at the State Department seem to be overwhelmingly Democrats.
AMCD board member Dr. Ashley Ansara discusses the Iranian sabotage of tankers in the Gulf with RT. AMCD Co-Chair John Hajjar discussed Middle East issues with Maria Maaloof on Capitol Hill. Mr. Hajjar also interviewed with France 24 on the potential for the Trump Middle East peace plan.