Washington Institute for Near East Policy

The Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) is a Washington, DC-based think tanks concerning US Middle East policy. It was founded in 1985 by Martin Indyk, an American diplomat who later became United States ambassador to Israel. Indyk has also been an executive at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

The establishment of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy' (WINEP) in 1985 greatly expanded the pro-Israel lobbys influence over policy as well. WINEP's founding director, Martin Indyk, had previously been research director of AIPAC which, then as now, focuses much of its efforts on Congress. Indyk developed WINEP into a highly effective think tank devoted to maintaining and strengthening the US-Israel alliance through advocacy in the media and lobbying the executive branch. Indyk is a major proponent of the two-state solution.

WINEP's mission statement declares the institute was founded to " advance a balanced and realistic understanding of American interests in the Middle East"; however, the institute's scholars have advocated policies that, while at times less partisan than other Washington-based outfits like the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), have been supportive of key aspects of the hardline Middle East agenda promoted by the George W. Bush administration after the 9/11 terror attacks.

In their controversial 2006 paper about the influence of the pro-Israel lobby on U.S. foreign policy, the respected realist scholars John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt wrote that part of the "Lobby's" success stems from its efforts to extend its reach beyond Beltway politics and into the domain of policy institutes. "The Israeli side also dominates the think tanks which play an important role in shaping public debate as well as actual policy.

Robert Satloff is WINEP's executive director; Patrick Clawson is deputy director for research. WINEP adjunct scholars include Joshua Muravchik, Daniel Pipes, Harvey Sicherman (of the Foreign Policy Research Institute), and Raymond Tanter.

WINEP's Board of Advisers includes: Warren Christopher, Lawrence S. Eagleburger, Alexander Haig, Max M. Kampelman, Samuel W. Lewis, Edward Luttwak, Michael Mandelbaum, Robert McFarlane, Martin Peretz, Richard Perle, James Roche, George P. Shultz, Paul Wolfowitz, James Woolsey, and Mortimer Zuckerman. Wolfowitz and Roche resigned from the board when they entered the Bush administration in 2001, although WINEP still proudly lists them.


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