“Middle East Implosion: Demystifying and Identifying Root Causes”

By Jon Sievert

Drawing on nearly 30 years of international development experience, Bob Leonard identifies and discusses the root causes of the current implosion of the Middle East at this week’s Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Service.

UU Service
“Middle East Implosion: Demystifying and Identifying Root Causes”
Bob Leonard
Sun, Apr 24, 10:30am
La Posada de la Aldea
Ancha de San Antonio 15

The talk will cover such topics as the consequences of America’s invasion and occupation during the Iraq war; Arab culture and how people view Western culture; a brief look at the history of Islam and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad; the real meaning of jihad; Saudi Arabia, Wahhabism, madrassas, and the spread of extreme fundamentalism; rise of jihadist gangs in Iraq and Syria and how they differ from those in Europe; the rise and spread of ISIS and the role of Western, and especially, American hegemony in the region.

Formerly a president of four commercial banks in the United States, Leonard is now an international consultant and trainer specializing in organizational, NGO, and community development. He began his training career in the late ’60s and ’70s as chairman of the Human Resource Group working with the NTL Institute of Washington, DC, and leading intensive Black-White workshops in Louisiana during their racial unrest in the 1980s. Since moving into international development work in 1988, he has trained more than 800 developing country nationals in management, planning, and community development. The participant lists include the top leaders in government institutions and international and local NGOs. His clients include 44 international and host country organizations among which are World Bank, USAID, UNDP, The Asian Development Bank, European Union, European Council, UNICEF, and the Canadian International Development Agency. Azerbaijan in the Caucasus and Uzbekistan in Central Asia, both predominately Muslim countries, are among the countries where Leonard has worked and where he developed an interest in the many aspects of Islam.

The UU Fellowship meets every Sunday at 10:30am at La Posada de la Aldea, Ancha de San Antonio 15, and welcomes people of all ages, races, religions, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Visitors are invited to attend the service and then join the UUs for coffee and snacks afterword. The room is wheelchair accessible.


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