Laurence Pope is a thirty-one year veteran of the U.S. Foreign Service. An Arabist, during his Foreign Service career he served as a political officer at American embassies in in Morocco, Libya, Tunis, and as Deputy Chief of Mission in Bahrain.
In the State Department, he was Director for the Northern Persian Gulf (Iran and Iraq) from 1987-1990, just before the first Gulf War. As Associate and Acting Coordinator for Counter Terrorism (1991-1993), he managed a number of renditions.
From 1993 to 1996, he was Ambassador to Chad, where he worked to organize the first presidential election in Chad’s history. From 1997 to 2000, he served as the Political Advisor to General Anthony C. Zinni, USMC, at the U.S. Central Command.
Amb. Pope is a recipient of the highest award given by the Defense Department to a civilian, the Secretary of Defense Medal for Distinguished Civilian Service.
In 2000, Pope was nominated as Ambassador to Kuwait by President Clinton, but chose to resign from the Foreign Service after a dispute over Iraq policy prevented his confirmation.
In 2001, he served for several months as the Staff Director in Jerusalem for the International Committee on Middle East Peace led by former senator George Mitchell, and following the tragedy of 9/11, he was appointed as a senior advisor for Arab affairs at the
U.S. Mission to the United Nations.
Since then he has been a consultant to the Defense Department and other national security agencies, and he is currently a Senior Fellow at the Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Virginia.
Pope is the author of a biography of François de Callières, a celebrated diplomatic theorist in the age of Louis XIV, and he recently edited a narrative produced by the Marine Corps History Division: "Among Heroes – With a Marine Corps Rifle Company on Peleliu".
He has lectured widely on the Arab Spring Awakening, which he has called the Second Arab Awakening in an op-ed piece in the New York Times.
He is currently a historian and national security consultant. A graduate of Bowdoin College, Ambassador Pope lives in Portland, Maine. Ambassador Pope is fluent in Arabic and French.