Members of Congress play a key role in U.S. national security and foreign policy. One of USIP’s signature event series, Congressional Newsmakers, is a platform for showcasing congressional ideas and raising awareness about the nation’s most urgent national security and foreign policy challenges. In each event, a member of Congress joins USIP leaders to discuss a specific foreign policy challenge and examine ways to address the problem. Prior Congressional Newsmaker events have tackled pressing national security topics such as U.S. policy toward Tunisia, war and famine in South Sudan, U.S. efforts to stabilize Iraq and Afghanistan, peacebuilding in Colombia, and effective foreign assistance.
This series furthers USIP’s congressionally mandated mission to reduce violent conflict abroad in accordance with America’s national interests, approaches and values. USIP, as an institute that symbolizes the U.S. commitment to peace, provides a unique and nonpartisan foreign policy forum for these important and timely discussions.
Looking at Tunisia from all Angles
On April 11, 2023, USIP hosted Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) — chairman of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Near East, South Asia, Central Asia, and Counterterrorism and a member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs — for a conversation exploring his views on how U.S. policy toward Tunisia should adjust to new realities on the ground.
War, Famine in South Sudan
On Thursday, May 11, 2017, at the U.S. Institute of Peace, Senator Coons, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Subcommittee, shared insights from a trip to Uganda and South Sudan and discussed the U.S. response to the crisis.
How to Stabilize Iraq: A Marine in Congress Speaks
On September 13, 2016, USIP hosted a discussion with Congressman Moulton on Iraq, ISIS and the broader Middle East.
Advancing U.S.-Afghan Ties
On February 5, 2015, USIP and the Alliance in Support of the Afghan People were pleased to host Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR), a U.S. Army veteran who served in both Afghanistan and Iraq and a newly elected member of the U.S. Senate, to provide his views on the shape of future U.S.-Afghan relations.
The New U.S.-Afghan Partnership
On October 15, 2014, USIP welcomed Senator Carl Levin (D – Michigan), Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, for a public discussion moderated by USIP Chairman of the Board of Directors, Stephen J. Hadley, on the future of Afghan-US relations.
Effective Foreign Assistance and National Security
On July 19, 2013, Congressman Adam Smith (D-WA), ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee, offered his views on how foreign assistance preserves and promotes the country’s national security.
Progress and Challenges in Afghanistan and Pakistan
On September 8, 2011, USIP hosted Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) for a conversation on her August 2011 trip to Afghanistan and Pakistan and her congressional perspective on diplomatic and security conditions in Afghanistan and Pakistan, as well as insights on the policy challenges facing the United States.
Lebanon and the Arab Spring
On May 10, 2011 Congressman Charles Boustany of Louisiana spoke about the current situation in Lebanon and how it is fairing in the Arab Spring, as Syria and the Arab world are being rocked by historic change.
Wrong Way on Iran: A New Strategy for Human Rights and Democracy Promotion in Iran
November 4, 2009, thirty years to the day after the taking of the U.S. hostages in Iran, Rep. Mark Kirk (R-IL) offered his views on how the U.S. should approach Iran on the issues of human rights and democracy.
Colombia: A Congressional View
On July 13, 2009, following President Álvaro Uribe’s visit to Washington in late June and his meeting with President Obama, Representative Jim McGovern (D-MA) discussed how the U.S. should approach Colombia and prospects for peace in the country’s decades-long internal conflict.
Afghanistan: A Senatorial View
On April 3, 2009, as policymakers and observers around the world discuss President Obama's Afghanistan/ Pakistan strategy, Senator Kit Bond of Missouri offered his own views on how the U.S. should approach this troubled region.