Inside the Middle East


Program Objective

Led by Salisbury Fellow of Intelligence and Middle East Affairs Avi Melamed, Inside the Middle East provides a select group of Gettysburg students with a distinct opportunity to develop the analytical and intelligence skills necessary to understand the contemporary Middle East. This objective is achieved through lectures, guided discussion sessions, one on one interaction, individual and group work, directed readings, and the application of analytical and intelligence tools provided throughout the year. Students will be expected to contribute hard work and thoughtful analysis when using strictly Middle Eastern based open source intelligence. The participants will present their intelligence findings using specific formats of intelligence bulletins and reports. Ultimately, participants will be required to choose a subject of their own and create a full Intelligence Report on their topic.

The program is open to all students who have an interest in Middle East regardless of their major or previous coursework.

The substantive theme for the 2017-2018 program is “The Restructured Balance of Power in the Middle East” and will cover diverse issues including: the ABC’s of the Middle East; the primary players in the Middle East today; the major issues that influence current events in the region; the challenge of Militant Islam; the Arab Spring; current trends and future directions; and the role of social media.

Program Components

The program is divided into five complementary parts:

  • Bi-weekly structured discussions around a specific topic relating to the contemporary Middle East: its history and its culture
  • Lectures via videoconference
  • Individual Intelligence Work- each participant will learn about and utilize open source intelligence, culminating in a final report about a specific topic of the participants choice
  • Annual symposium in Washington, D.C. in which program participants present their Intelligence Reporrts as well as key lessons from the program
  • Experiential Learning Trip to the Middle East (Not yet finalized)


2017-2018 Program Schedule