Sir Richard Dearlove to speak on ‘Arab Awakening’

  • April 25, 2011
Sir Richard Dearlove to speak on ‘Arab Awakening’

Former head of MI6 will give a Gates Distinguished Lecture this week.

Sir Richard Dearlove will give a Gates Distinguished Lecture this week on ‘The Arab Awakening – reflections on its causes, directions and  implications’.

Sir Richard, who has been Master of Pembroke College since 2004 and was head of MI6 from 1999 to 2004, gave a talk earlier this year in which he credited texting and the Internet with helping to trigger the disturbances which have swept the Middle East. He said that what linked them was “the diffusion of power away from the states and the empowerment of individuals, and small groups of individuals, by technology”.

He has also spoken recently of his concerns about the rise of Islamist influence in the Middle East. He told an audience at a Chatham House conference in March that the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt was the most organised political movement in Egypt, but was “at heart a terrorist organisation”.

He added that Hamas and Hizbollah were surrogates of the Iranian state and said that it was “immensely important” that the UK and Israel work together on Iran since they had common security interests, even if the relationship could be”difficult”.

The Gates Distinguished Lecture series is organised by the Gates Scholars Council. The Lecture takes place at the Queen’s Lecture Theatre, Emmanuel College, at 6.30pm on April 27th and is open to Gates scholars and their guests.

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