Gary Grappo

Board Member
Gary Grappo is a former US ambassador and a distinguished fellow at the Center for Middle East Studies at the Korbel School for International Studies, University of Denver. He possesses nearly 40 years of diplomatic and public policy experience in a variety of public, private and nonprofit endeavors. As a career member of the Senior Foreign Service of the US Department of State, he served as Envoy and Head of Mission of the Office of the Quartet Representative, the Honorable Mr. Tony Blair, in Jerusalem. Grappo held a number of senior positions in the US State Department, including Minister Counselor for Political Affairs at the US Embassy in Baghdad; US Ambassador to the Sultanate of Oman; and Charge d’Affaires and Deputy Chief of Mission of the US Embassy in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. From 2011-13, he was President and CEO of The Keystone Center. He currently serves as CEO of Equilibrium International Consulting, providing analysis and policy guidance on foreign affairs to businesses, institutions and the media. Grappo is the former chairman of the Board of Directors at Fair Observer.

Can the Taliban Govern Responsibly?

October 18, 2021

Following the fall of Kabul in August, the first face-to-face meeting between US officials and the Taliban took place last week. As is typical in such first encounters, both sides came with their respective agendas, including demands and requests of the other side. The one issue on which both may...

What Is the Ruckus Over AUKUS?

September 27, 2021

Earlier this month, the US, UK and Australia announced an unprecedented agreement to provide nuclear-powered submarines to the Australian Navy. The move provoked outrage from France, which had been negotiating the sale of conventionally-powered submarines to the Australians. French ire led to the withdrawal of its ambassadors from Washington and...

America’s Post-9/11 Lessons and Lamentations

September 20, 2021

Earlier this month, Americans and people around the world commemorated a day that still resonates with disbelief, astonishment and profound sorrow. We don’t know how the world will look at the events of 9/11 in 100 years. But, after 20 years, the heaviness persists and the portents remain still unclear....

The Issue of Abortion Is a Litmus Test for the American Catholic Church

June 28, 2021

Ignoring warnings from Pope Francis and the Vatican, US Catholic bishops earlier this month overwhelmingly approved drafting guidance that would deny the rite of communion to public officials who do not support the church’s opposition to abortion. The decision was seen as the church’s most public rebuke yet of US...

Will the US and Iran Meet Jaw to Jaw?

February 08, 2021

On February 4, US President Joe Biden visited the US State Department, located down the street from the White House. He went to deliver a foreign policy message much needed by the men and women of that department and the nation. His audience was a receptive one, not surprising given...

A Perspective on America’s Imperfect Democracy

January 11, 2021

It is a well-established fact that America, as it approaches its 245th birthday, is a divided nation. Red versus blue, conservative versus liberal, right versus left, black versus white, rich versus (a growing number of) poor, urban versus rural. Further divisions may be drawn along education, religion, class, gender identity,...

Joe Biden Will Face a Much-Changed and Skeptical World

December 14, 2020

Joe Biden was not elected for his positions on foreign policy and national security. Few US presidential candidates are. In his debates with outgoing President Donald Trump prior to the election, those issues were hardly discussed. So, the success or failure of the Biden presidency will not be determined by...

Joe Biden and America’s Second Reconstruction

November 09, 2020

After four days of agonizing vote tabulations, interminable political commentary, overwrought election dissection and national public angst, Joe Biden has been declared the winner of the 2020 election as America’s next president. Biden partisans are entitled to some celebration. It was a hard-fought win against what seemed like impossible odds...

Amid Normalization With Israel, Sudan’s Future Hangs in the Balance

October 26, 2020

On October 23, the Trump administration announced the agreement between Israel and Sudan to normalize relations. Ordinarily, such an agreement would be good for both countries. But for Sudan, still struggling with imposing democratic norms after decades of brutal dictatorship, it could come at a price. The accord marks another...

The Role of Foreign Policy in the US Election

October 13, 2020

It has become cliché to assert that unless their country is at war, Americans pay scant attention to foreign policy in their presidential elections. On the whole — and assuming a candidate isn’t seen as a warmonger, an accusation made of Republican candidate Barry Goldwater in his loss to incumbent...

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