The Role of Congress – Help or Hindrance? 


MEI/FMEP 2023 Briefing Series: Israel/Palestine – Key Issues for the 118th Congress

Part Six: The Role of Congress – Help or Hindrance?


Recorded March 17, 2023

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This session explored the unique role played by Congress in shaping US policy toward Israel/Palestine and the various intended and unintended consequences of that role. Featuring: Hassan El-Tayyab (FCNL), Rebecca Abou Chedid (FMEP Board member), and Josh Ruebner (IMEU).

Participant Biographies

Rebecca Abou-Chedid is a member of the Board of Directors of the Foundation for Middle East Peace. She previously was Director of Outreach for the New America Foundation’s Middle East Task Force; and prior to that was National Policy Director of the Arab American Institute. Rebecca was also co-Chair of the Board of Directors of Just Vision. Rebecca is a graduate of Georgetown Law School and received her BA at Cornell University. She is a Partner at Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP. Rebecca previously served as a law clerk in the U.S. Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review.

Hassan El-Tayyab is FCNL’s legislative director for Middle East policy. His passion for foreign affairs is rooted in his desire to make life better for people in the Middle East, including his extended family in Jordan. He is convinced that advancing a more peaceful and diplomacy-based foreign policy in the Middle East is critical, not only for the family he loves, but for peace and stability worldwide. Prior to joining FCNL in August 2019, he was co-director of the national advocacy group Just Foreign Policy, where he led their lobbying work to advance a more progressive foreign policy in the Middle East and Latin America. He played a major role in the successful passage of the War Powers Resolution to end U.S. military participation in the Saudi-led coalition’s war and blockade on Yemen. His writings and commentaries have been featured in numerous news outlets, including CNN, BBC World News, Politico, The Hill, Al Jazeera, The Huffington Post, The Intercept and more.

Josh Ruebner is the Director of Government Relations at the Institute for Middle East Understanding. He is an Adjunct Professor of Justice and Peace Studies at Georgetown University. Ruenber is a PhD candidate at University of Exeter’s European Centre for Palestine Studies. He is the author of Shattered Hopes: Obama’s Failure to Broker Israeli-Palestinian Peace, and Israel: Democracy or Apartheid State? He is a former Analyst in Middle East Affairs at Congressional Research Service, Policy Director at US Campaign for Palestinian Rights, Senior Principal at Progress Up Consulting, and Managing Director of Americans for Justice in Palestine Action.


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Rebecca Abou-Chedid → 

Hassan El-Tayyab →  

Josh Ruebner →  

Khaled Elgindy →  

Lara Friedman → 

General Links on Topics Discussed

From Josh Ruebner and IMEU:

From Hassan El-Tayyab:

From Rebecca Abou Chedid: