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Michael Singh

Managing Director & Lane-Swig Snr. Fellow
The Washington Institute 

Michael Singh is the Managing Director and Lane-Swig Senior Fellow at The Washington Institute and a former senior director for Middle East affairs at the National Security Council. Since January 2022, he has also served as the interim director of the Institute's Diane and Guilford Glazer Foundation Program on Great Power Competition and the Middle East.

During his tenure at the White House from 2005 to 2008, Mr. Singh was responsible for devising and coordinating U.S. national security policy toward the region stretching from Morocco to Iran, with a particular emphasis on Iran’s nuclear and regional activities, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Syria, and security cooperation in the broader Middle East. Previously, Mr. Singh served as special assistant to secretaries of state Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell and at the U.S. embassy in Israel.

Mr. Singh is a Senate-confirmed member of the Board of Directors of the United States Institute of Peace. He is also a member of the Governance Board of the Vandenberg Coalition, and of the National Council of Welcome.US, a national initiative to support refugees co-chaired by former Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama, among others. In 2019, he served as co-chair of the congressionally-mandated Syria Study Group, which was charged with providing Congress and the executive branch with an assessment of the situation in Syria and recommendations for U.S. policy there. Its final report was published in September 2019. He also served on another congressional commission, the Task Force on Extremism in Fragile States. Mr. Singh served as a Middle East advisor to the Romney presidential campaign from 2011-2012, and co-chaired Mr. Romney’s State Department transition team in 2012. He served as an adjunct fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and as an economics instructor at Harvard College.

Mr. Singh has written extensively on the Middle East, broader U.S. national security strategy, and the organization and management of the U.S. national security apparatus. His writing has appeared in the Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, International Security, and elsewhere, and he has appeared as a commentator on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and other outlets. Mr. Singh is also is a senior advisor at WestExec Advisors, which provides advice to private clients on international public policy and political risk. In addition, he serves on the advisory boards of United Against a Nuclear Iran and the Texas National Security Review.