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April 9, 2001

Middle East negotiator Miller takes center stage April 11

By Eric Rangus


One of the State Department’s top Middle East peace negotiators will speak at Emory on April 11, offering his perspective on the volatile Palestinian-Israeli peace settlement process.

Aaron Miller, a 20-year veteran of the State Department, will present his lecture, “Arab-Israeli Peace: A Retrospective” Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in 208 White Hall. He is currently deputy special Middle East coordinator for Arab-Israeli negotiations. The lecture is sponsored by the Middle East Research program.

It would be difficult to trump the experience Miller will bring to the podium. Since 1993, he has been involved in negotiating each of the nine agreements the United States brokered between Israel and Palestine. Miller was involved with the efforts to get Israel and Syria to the negotiating table as well.

The path that leads Miller to Emory is a rather simple one.

“I called him on the phone and asked him if he was interested in coming here to talk, and he said he’d be delighted,” said Kenneth Stein, Schatten professor of Contemporary Middle Eastern History and Israeli Studies.

“Some people are skilled enough that they have a podium whenever they want it,” Stein said.

The casual way in which Miller was recruited for his speech is no accident. Stein and Miller have been acquainted for more than 20 years. They met as graduate students at the University of Michigan.

Miller has served as a Middle East adviser to five secretaries of state, and also has served as a senior member of the state department’s policy planning staff, in the bureau of intelli-gence and research and in the office of the historian.

From his state department post he has seen presidential administrations move from George Bush to Bill Clinton to George W. Bush.

The differences in their policies and approaches to the Middle East is just one of the possible subjects Miller is qualified to discuss during the lecture.

In addition to his work at the peace table, Miller served on the United States Holocaust Memorial Council between 1998 and 2000.


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