The Oslo Legacy:

Thirty Years On


Marking 30 years since the signing of the first Oslo agreement and the start of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, this special evening will offer reflections on the past, analysis of the current moment, and a vision for the future.

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Panel: The Practitioners

Participants in the peace process, representing American, Israeli, and Palestinian interests, respectively, will gather to share recollections, examine how we arrived at this present moment, and analyze where we are today and offer options for the future. 

Featuring: Aaron David Miller, Joel Singer, and Ghaith al-Omari. Moderated by Susie Gelman.


Panel: The Moment, The Future

Expert analysis of current policy and political challenges will give way to an exploration of what the future can and should look like—including prioritizing the voices of the next generation and creating space for more women within both communal and policy discourse around Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Featuring: Carmiel Arbit, Shanie Reichman, and Khalil Sayegh. Moderated by Susie Gelman.


MEET THE SPEAKERS


Carmiel Arbit

Carmiel Arbit is a nonresident senior fellow for Middle East Programs and the Scowcroft Middle East Security Initiative at the Atlantic Council. Her research focuses on U.S.-Israel relations, the peace process, Israeli and Palestinian politics, Congress, and broader issues affecting the Middle East.

A co-founder of Key Bridge Strategies, she has consulted for non-profit organizations around the world, advancing public diplomacy, government relations, and community engagement strategies in the United States, Israel, Palestine, Cyprus, Sudan, Sri Lanka, and Mexico.
She was previously the Director of Strategic Engagement in AIPAC’s office of Policy and Government Affairs in Washington, where she helped drive the organization’s strategy for engaging key policymakers and influencers. Prior to her time at AIPAC, she worked at the Brookings Institution’s Center for Middle East Policy. Her research there focused on Israel, counterterrorism, and international security. She has worked in government affairs and public diplomacy for the American Jewish Committee, Thomson Reuters, and Penn Schoen and Berland Associates. She began her career on the international desk of the H.L. Education Center for Peace—Geneva Initiative in Tel Aviv, where she worked to bring together Israeli and Palestinian stakeholders in support of a two-state solution.

Arbit earned her B.A. from George Washington University and her M.S. from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. She has been recognized as a top foreign policy influencer by Diplomatic Courier. She is also a Truman national security fellow.


Susie Gelman

Susie Gelman, a graduate of Harvard University and Georgetown University Law Center, served as board chair of Israel Policy Forum from 2016 to 2023. She previously served for three terms as president of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, one term as Federation’s campaign co-chair, and is a lifetime member of the Federation’s Board of Directors. She previously co-chaired the Israel Religious Expressions Platform (iRep) of the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA), an initiative that focused on pluralism through freedom of choice of marriage in Israel. Susie was the inaugural chair of the Birthright Israel Foundation and served for many years as a member of its board as well as the Taglit-Birthright Israel Planning Committee. She served as co-chair of UJC (now JFNA) Israel and co-chaired JFNA’s General Assembly in Jerusalem in both 2003 and 2013. Susie is a member of the Board of Governors of The Hebrew University, an honorary fellow of Brandeis University, and is past president of the Georgetown Day School Board of Trustees, where she served on the board for 12 years. She is the past president of the Goldman Environmental Foundation, where she continues to serve on the board. Susie and her husband, Michael, have three adult children, three sons-in-law, and three precious grandchildren.


Aaron David Miller

Aaron David Miller is a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, focusing on U.S. foreign policy. He has written five books, including his most recent, The End of Greatness: Why America Can’t Have (and Doesn’t Want) Another Great President (Palgrave, 2014) and The Much Too Promised Land: America’s Elusive Search for Arab-Israeli Peace (Bantam, 2008). He received his Ph.D. in Middle East and U.S. diplomatic history from the University of Michigan in 1977.

Between 1978 and 2003, Miller served at the State Department as a historian, analyst, negotiator, and advisor to Republican and Democratic secretaries of state, where he helped formulate U.S. policy on the Middle East and the Arab-Israel peace process, most recently as the senior advisor for Arab-Israeli negotiations. He also served as the deputy special Middle East coordinator for Arab-Israeli negotiations, a senior member of the State Department’s policy planning staff, in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research, and in the office of the historian. He has received the department’s Distinguished, Superior, and Meritorious Honor Awards.

Miller is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and formerly served as resident scholar at the Georgetown Center for Strategic and International Studies. He has been a featured presenter at the World Economic Forum and leading U.S. universities. Between 2003 and 2006 he served as president of Seeds of Peace, a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering young leaders from regions of conflict with the leadership skills required to advance reconciliation and coexistence. From 2006 to 2019, Miller was a public policy scholar, vice president for new initiatives, and director of the Middle East program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

Miller is a global affairs analyst for CNN. His articles have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Politico, Foreign Policy, USAToday, and CNN.com. He is a frequent commentator on NPR, BBC, and Sirius XM radio.


Ghaith al-Omari

Ghaith al-Omari, a senior fellow in The Washington Institute’s Irwin Levy Family Program on the U.S.-Israel Strategic Relationship, is the former executive director of the American Task Force on Palestine. Prior to that, he served in various positions within the Palestinian Authority, including director of the international relations department in the Office of the Palestinian President and advisor to then-Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas. In these capacities, he provided advice on foreign policy—especially vis-à-vis the United States and Israel—and security. He has extensive experience in the Palestinian-Israeli peace process, having been an advisor to the Palestinian negotiating team throughout the permanent-status negotiations (1999–2001). In that capacity, he participated in various negotiating rounds, most notably the Camp David summit and the Taba talks. After the breakdown of the Palestinian-Israeli negotiations, he was the lead Palestinian drafter of the Geneva Initiative, an unofficial model peace agreement negotiated between leading Palestinian and Israeli public figures. Mr. al-Omari is a lawyer by training and a graduate of Georgetown and Oxford Universities. Prior to his involvement in the Middle East peace process, he taught international law in Jordan and was active in human rights advocacy.


Shanie Reichman

Shanie Reichman is the IPF Atid national director at Israel Policy Forum, based in New York City, where she works to elevate the discourse around the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Shanie serves as the founding co-chair for the Forum Dvorah U.S. committee, on the board of Queens College Hillel, on the advisory council for the Center for Ethnic, Racial and Religious Understanding, as the deputy communications director for Young Professionals in Foreign Policy’s (YPFP) NY Chapter, and as a mentor with Girl Security. Her work has been published in the Forward, the Jerusalem Post, Times of Israel, Hey Alma, Jewish Unpacked, and International Policy Digest.


Khalil Sayegh

Khalil is a seasoned political analyst focusing on the intricate dynamics of the Middle East and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Born and raised in Gaza, Palestine and having lived in Ramallah and Bethlehem before moving to Washington, D.C., Khalil has used his unique lived experience to foster positive change in the region and advocate for a just and peaceful Middle East.

Khalil was a peace activist working with different organizations to foster a grassroots movement of understanding, nonviolence, and transformation among Israelis and Palestinians living in Ramallah. Believing that the voices of the people shape the destiny of nations, Khalil also co-founded the Agora initiative with Israeli academic Elezar Wisse. This innovative new organization seeks to advocate constitutional democracy in the Middle East.

Khalil holds a Master’s degree in comparative politics from American University in Washington, D.C., where his research focused on democratization in the Middle East. He is pursuing an additional Master’s degree in human rights at the Catholic University of America.

A true catalyst for change, Khalil’s educational, professional, and lived experience has provided him the unique ability to bridge divides, facilitate understanding, and work tirelessly in pursuit of a better, more equitable future in Israel-Palestine and the broader Middle East.


Joel Singer

Joel Singer served as legal advisor of the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 1993 to 1996 and prior to that as director of the international law department of the Israel Defense Forces, holding the rank of colonel. Singer is the only person who has held both of these two high-level positions within the Israeli government. For a span of almost 25 years, beginning shortly after the 1973 Yom Kippur War, working for both right-wing Likud governments and left-wing Labor governments, Singer participated in negotiating peace and other agreements with all of Israel’s Arab neighbors, including Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, and the Palestinians.

During his tenure with Israeli governments, Singer worked closely with four prime ministers, six ministers of defense, and seven foreign ministers, including Yitzhak Rabin, Menachem Begin, Shimon Peres, Moshe Dayan, Ezer Weizmann, and Ariel Sharon.

In 1993-1996, while working for the Rabin-Peres government, Singer negotiated a series of agreements with the PLO, known as the Oslo Accords, including the 1993 Israel-PLO Mutual Recognition Agreement, the 1993 Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements (Oslo I), the 1994 Gaza-Jericho Agreement, and the 1995 Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip (Oslo II). Previously, while working for the Menachem Begin government, Singer was a principal author of the Israeli autonomy model developed in connection with the 1978 Camp David Accords and was a member of the Israeli delegation to the Palestinian Autonomy Talks with Egypt and the United States (1979-1982).

In 1978-79, Singer was a member of the Israeli delegation that negotiated the Israel-Egypt peace treaty. Thereafter, Singer became a member of the joint Israeli-Egyptian military commission, as well as a member of an interdepartmental steering committee that oversaw the negotiation of numerous normalization agreements between the two countries. In 1981, Singer was a member of the Israeli delegation that negotiated an agreement with Egypt and the United States to establish a Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) to undertake peacekeeping responsibilities in the Sinai. From 1982 to 1986, Singer participated in efforts to resolve a border dispute between Israel and Egypt, through negotiations, conciliation, and arbitration, which took place in 1988 in Geneva, Switzerland (the Taba Arbitration).

In 1983, Singer was a member of the Israeli delegation that negotiated an Israeli-Lebanese peace treaty with delegations of Lebanon and the United States (though the treaty did not come into effect).

In 1995-1996, Singer was a member of the Israeli delegation that negotiated an Israeli-Syrian peace treaty with Syrian and American delegations, an effort that has not yet ended.

Singer has written extensively about the Middle East peace process and has been invited to speak about his negotiation and mediation experiences by foreign governments, as well as many U.S. and foreign universities, think tanks, and other organizations. He has also provided commentary on Middle East peace process developments in interviews with media such as CNN, CBS, BBC World Service, PBS Newshour with Jim Lehrer, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the Boston Globe, The Baltimore Sun, USA Today, and the Christian Science Monitor.

After retiring from his service with the Israeli government, Singer became a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of an international law firm.

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