A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

An MEI/MEJ Connection to Tonight's Maryland Primary

Tonight's Maryland Democratic primary result has a connection to both the Middle East Institute and to The Middle East Journal. The Democratic nomination for Senate, to replace the long-serving Sen. Barbara Mikulski, was won by Congressman Chris Van Hollen, a rising star in the Democratic leadership. Since Maryland Democrats have a two-to-one registration advantage in Maryland, he is likely to win in November.

Van Hollen is the son of Ambassador Chris Van Hollen, Senior, onetime Ambassador to Sri Lanka and the Maldives, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Near East and South Asia, and a career diplomat. (The younger Van Hollen was born in Karachi.)

Ambassador Van Hollen
As I noted after the elder Van Hollen's passing at age 90 in 2013, after retiring from the Foreign Service, Ambassador Van Hollen served as Vice President of the Middle East Institute from 1988-1992, and concurrently as Editor of The Middle East Journal (and thus a predecessor of mine) in 1991-1992.

Back in the 1990s, long before I was myself at MEI, I remember a conversation with Ambassador Van Hollen in which he told me his son had been elected to the Maryland State Legislature, saying, "someday he may be better known than I was."


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