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Dr. Emanuele Ottolenghi

Senior Fellow

Areas of Impact:

Syria, Europe, Iran - Human Rights, Israel, Hezbollah, Palestinian Politics, Iran, Iran - Sanctions

Biography:

A unique combination of analytical skills, scholarship and grasp of international crises, make Emanuele Ottolenghi a valued member of FDD's staff.

Dr. Ottolenghi is a leader for his work on Iran. He has advised several foreign ministries in Europe, and testified before the Canadian and European parliaments.  Dr. Ottolenghi's extensive research exposed the connections between Iran's energy companies and its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, the paramilitary organization responsible for the regime's political repression and international terrorism activities.

A unique combination of analytical skills, scholarship and grasp of international crises, make Emanuele Ottolenghi a valued member of FDD's staff.

Dr. Ottolenghi is a leader for his work on Iran. He has advised several foreign ministries in Europe, and testified before the Canadian and European parliaments.  Dr. Ottolenghi's extensive research exposed the connections between Iran's energy companies and its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, the paramilitary organization responsible for the regime's political repression and international terrorism activities.

Dr. Ottolenghi believes Western countries should redouble their efforts and ensure that Iran's procurement networks and IRGC companies, at home and abroad, are named, shamed, and banished from the polite company of the corporate world. He also believes that Western toughness against Iran's human rights abuses would spur progress in the nuclear standoff.

Dr. Ottolenghi addressed these matters in his 2010 book, Iran: The Looming Crisis - Can the West Live with Iran's Nuclear Threat? It updates his 2009 work, Under a Mushroom Cloud: Europe, Iran and the Bomb, and includes an analysis of President Obama's overtures to Iran, the disputed re-election of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the latest developments in Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile programs, the diplomatic stalemate and domestic protests against the clerical regime. The former chief of the United Kingdom's Defence Staff, General Lord Charles Guthrie, praised Under a Mushroom Cloud as "an important contribution to the debate about Europe's approach to Iran." His most recent book, The Pasdaran: Inside Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, released in September 2011.

Among Dr. Ottolenghi other areas of domain expertise are Israel's domestic politics, constitutional issues, political trends and elections; the Arab-Israeli conflict; terrorism and security; Italian foreign policy; the EU's Middle East policymaking; and transatlantic relations.

Dr. Ottolenghi headed the Transatlantic Institute in Brussels and taught Israel Studies at St. Antony's College, Oxford University. He obtained his Ph.D. in political theory at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, preceded by undergraduate studies in political science at the University of Bologna. Dr. Ottolenghi currently resides in Washington, DC.

He has a column in the British monthly, Standpoint Magazine and blogs on Contentions, the Blog of Commentary Magazine. His columns have appeared on many English-language publications, including Newsday, Commentary, the National Review Online, The Middle East Quarterly, The Guardian, The Australian, The Daily Mirror, The Daily Star, and the Wall Street Journal Europe; European-language publications such as Die Welt (German), Rezpekt (Czech), Il Corriere del Ticino, L'Unità, il Foglio and Libero (Italian). He writes regularly for Italian newspapers such as Il Riformista and Liberal.

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Khamenei’s Choice to Head Powerful Charity Bolsters the IRGC

13th April 2015 – FDD Policy Brief

Khamenei’s Choice to Head Powerful Charity Bolsters the IRGC

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Saeed Ghasseminejad

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei appointed Parviz Fattah as the new head of the Imam Khomeini Relief Foundation (IKRF) last weekend. more...

Analysis & Commentary

20th May 2015 – Quoted by The Tower

Expert: Iran’s Holocaust Denial, Echoing Nazi Rhetoric, Exposes Its True Threat To Israel

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Benjamin Weinthal

Iranian Holocaust denial, which echoes Nazi rhetoric, exposes an intent “to [repeat] that same crime,” Emanuele Ottolenghi, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), argued in an article published Monday in Tablet Magazine. Ottolenghi rejected claims that it is misguided to associate Iran with Nazi Germany. more...

20th May 2015 – The National Interest

Who Really Controls Iran’s Economy?

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Saeed Ghasseminejad

The looming nuclear deal will soon unshackle Iran’s economy from the burden of Western sanctions. Who stands to benefit from this opening? more...

18th May 2015 – Tablet

Why the Iran Nuclear Deal Could be Catastrophic for Israel

Emanuele Ottolenghi

In a recent issue of National Interest, former CIA analyst Paul Pillar lamented “the near-obligatory reference to Nazis in any anti-agreement writing about Iran.” The comparison, he argues, is “an emotion-based effort to foster distaste for doing any business with such an ogre-like regime,” which exaggerates the regime’s sinister disposition at a moment when it is showing a clear desire to become “a more integrated member of the international community.” more...

12th May 2015 – Quoted by JPost Staff - The Jerusalem Post

Sale of Planes to Iran Points to Crack in Iran Sanctions Regime

Emanuele Ottolenghi

A nuclear deal with Iran has yet to be signed but the sanctions regime against the Islamic Republic appears to be crumbling already. more...