The Eisenhower Institute

Inside the Middle East

Applications for the
2017-2018 Inside the Middle East Program
are now closed and under review.

Program Objective

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.


Avi Melamed, Fellow of Intelligence and Middle East Affairs

Avi Melamed, who serves as the Salisbury Fellow of Intelligence and Middle East Affairs for the Eisenhower Institute with offices at Gettysburg College and in Washington, D.C., is an expert on the current affairs in the Arab and Muslim world and their impact on Israel and the Middle East.

His expertise includes: The Arab Awakening and Regional Ramifications; Arab perspectives on Israel; Current Affairs in the Arab World; Emerging Challenges and Opportunities in the Middle East; Evolving Forces in the Region; the Gaza Strip; the Geostrategic Environment of the Middle East; the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict; Jerusalem; Roots and Ideology of Radical Islam; Terrorism; the War in Syria; the West Bank, etc.

Avi is a former Israeli Intelligence Official and Senior Official on Arab Affairs. In his decades of public service, Avi - an Israeli Jew who is fluent in Arabic, English and Hebrew, with a unique understanding of Arab society and culture - has held high-risk Government, Senior Advisory, Intelligence and Counter-Terrorist intelligence positions in Arab cities and communities throughout the region.

As an Author, Educator, Strategic Intelligence Analyst, Avi Melamed educates current and future leaders around the world about Israel and the Middle East and trains them to be Media Literate Critical Thinkers who dialogue with reality and don’t get sidetracked by concepts, narratives and theories.

Avi endeavors to ensure that the next generation of policy makers and influencers will be knowledgeable about Israel and the Middle East and will apply methods of critical thinking regarding Middle East Affairs.

He coauthored Separate and Unequal: Israel's Rule in East Jerusalem he wrote Ubrusi: The Novel. His newest book, Inside the Middle East: Making Sense of the Most Dangerous and Complicated Region on Earth, (also just released as an audio book) a GPS to help you navigate the dramatically changing Middle East offers a unique insight into the Arab world, challenges widely-accepted perceptions, provides a guide to make sense of the events unfolding in the region, and offers an out of the box idea that could lead to a positive breakthrough in the Israeli- Palestinian conflict.

As one of the leading analyst in his field, Avi provides Middle Eat and Arab World Intelligence Analysis, Briefings and tours to diplomats, Israeli and foreign policy makers, international media outlets and a wide variety of organizations and private clients on a range of Israel and Middle East affairs.

In the private sector Avi facilitates relationships between Israeli and international firms and potential partners in the Arab world.

He is also the founder and creator of Feenjan – Israel speaks Arabic, a non-profit initiative which presents contemporary Israeli society and culture to the Arab world in Arabic, and serves as an online platform for Israelis and Arabs to discover and discuss issues of common interest.

Avi has his finger on the pulse on the Arab world. With a proven record of foreseeing the evolution of events in the Middle East and their impact on a local and regional level.

Through all of his efforts, as an analyst, educator, entrepreneur, and writer, Avi is a bridge builder.  He dedicates himself to enhancing the Arabic, English and Hebrew speaking audience’s comprehensive understanding of the Middle East and of each other.

His website is and he can be reached at


Program Components

The program is divided into five complementary parts:

  1. Bi-weekly structured discussions around a specific topic relating to the contemporary Middle East: its history and its culture
  2. Lectures via videoconference
  3. 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
  4. Annual symposium in Washington, D.C. in which program participants present their Intelligence Reporrts as well as key lessons from the program
  5. Experiential Learning Trip to the Middle East (Not yet finalized)


2017-2018 Program Schedule



300 N Washington St, Box 2988
Gettysburg, PA 17325-1400
Tel 717.337.6685 Fax 717.337.8459

818 Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC 20006
Tel 202.628.4444 Fax 202.628.4445