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Barbara Bodine

KNOXVILLE — Barbara K. Bodine, a retired U.S. ambassador to Yemen — the reputed land of the Queen of Sheba, home of the three wisemen and burial spot of Cain and Abel — will discuss the future possibilities of the United State’s relationship with Yemen on April 28.

Free and open to the public, the event will begin at 7 p.m. in the Toyota Auditorium at the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy, 1640 Cumberland Ave. Her appearance is sponsored by the Baker Center and the Center for International Education through its Great Decisions Program. Funded by the Ready for the World initiative, Great Decisions has brought a series of speakers from around the country to UT this semester to address our nation’s most pressing foreign policy issues.

Since the failed Christmas bombing attempt over Detroit, Yemen has reappeared on the American radar as a terrorism threat and much has been written on the country’s poverty, governance inadequacies and security challenges. Bodine will talk about whether Yemen is the next front in the war on terror, or an opportunity to commit the resources, people and will to help Yemen change course.

Bodine is a lecturer and diplomat-in-residence at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, where she teaches courses on the Iraq War, U.S. diplomacy in the Persian Gulf region and Yemen. She also serves as the director of the scholars in the Nation’s Service Initiative, an intern and fellowship program for students pursuing careers in federal service.

In the U.S. Foreign Service, Bodine spent more than 30 years focusing on the Arabian Peninsula and greater Persian Gulf issues. From 1997 to 2001, Bodine served as an ambassador to Yemen, and in spring 2003, she was the senior State Department official and the first coalition coordinator for reconstruction in Baghdad and the central governorates. She also has had several assignments in the State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs.

Since leaving her governmental career, Bodine has been a senior fellow at the Kennedy School of Government and the Robert Wilhelm Fellow at MIT. Bodine is a regular commenter for PBS NewsHour, CNN, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, among other media.

C O N T A C T :

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,