The overarching question imparting urgency to this exploration is: Can U.S.-Russian contention in cyberspace cause the two nuclear superpowers to stumble into war? In considering this question we were constantly reminded of recent comments by a prominent U.S. arms control expert: At least as dangerous as the risk of an actual cyberattack, he observed, is cyber operations’ “blurring of the line between peace and war.” Or, as Nye wrote, “in the cyber realm, the difference between a weapon and a non-weapon may come down to a single line of code, or simply the intent of a computer program’s user.”
Drawing on themes from her recently published book Black Wave, Kim Ghattas will look back at forty years of rivalry between Iran and Saudi Arabia, unpack the misconceptions that handicap America's dealings with the region, and analyze the inter-play between the Saudi-Iran rivalry and American foreign policy.
This talk will be moderated by MEI Faculty Director Tarek Masoud.
Kim Ghattas is an author and analyst with more than twenty years of experience in print and broadcast media, covering the Middle East, international affairs and US foreign policy. She is a contributing writer for the Atlantic magazine and a non-resident senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. She has reported for the BBC, the Financial Times and de Volkskrant. She is the author of Black Wave: Saudi Arabia, Iran and the Forty Year Rivalry that Unraveled Culture, Religion and Collective Memory in the Middle East , a NYT notable book of 2020 and The Secretary: A Journey with Hillary Clinton from Beirut to the Heart of American Power, a NYT bestseller. She serves on the board of Trustees of the American University of Beirut and on the board of directors of the organisation of Arab Reporters for Investigative Journalism (ARIJ). She was born and raised in Beirut.