On Sunday Fouad Ajami, Herbert and Jane Dwight Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, passed away at the age of 68 due to prostate cancer.
With a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Washington, Ajami authored hundreds of essays on foreign policy, Arab and Islamic politics, and international history. He covered topics including 9/11 and the Iraq war and received several awards for his work, including the 2006 National Humanities Medal and the 1982 MacArthur Fellows Award.
In addition to his contributions in academia, Ajami also acted as an analyst during the Persian Gulf War and as an unofficial political advisor for the George W. Bush administration in the early 2000s.
His writings expressed his support of the U.S. occupation of Iraq, and despite his controversial interpretations, his expertise made him “the most politically influential Arab intellectual of his generation in the United States,” according to The Nation magazine.
“Fouad is truly one of the most brilliant Middle East scholars of our time,” wrote John Raisian, director of the Hoover Institution, in a statement released on June 22. “His Hoover Institution family will forever miss his superb scholarship, quick wit and gentle spirit.”