The World Affairs Council hosts a national conference on Islam and the West featuring renowned journalists, scholars and political figures.
Speakers include Vice President Dick Cheney, Dr. Henry Kissinger, Sen. Joseph Biden, Dr. Francis Fukuyama, Dr. Bernard Lewis, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. The conference is moderated by Judy Woodruff.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali
Ayaan Hirsi Ali is an outspoken defender of women's rights in Islamic societies. Hirsi Ali was born in Mogadishu, Somalia. She escaped an arranged marriage by immigrating to the Netherlands in 1992, and served as a member of the Dutch parliament from 2003 to 2006.
In parliament, she worked on furthering the integration of non-Western immigrants into Dutch society, and on defending the rights of women in Dutch Muslim society. In 2004, together with director Theo van Gogh, she made "Submission," a film about the oppression of women in conservative Islamic cultures.
Joseph R. Biden Jr.
Joseph Robinette "Joe" Biden, Jr. (born November 20, 1942), is the 47th and current Vice President of the United States under the administration of President Barack Obama. He was a United States Senator from Delaware from January 3, 1973 until his resignation on January 15, 2009, following his election to the Vice Presidency. Biden was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania and lived there for ten years before moving to Delaware. He became an attorney in 1969, and was elected to a county council in 1970.
Biden was first elected to the Senate in 1972 and became the sixth-youngest senator in U.S. history. He was re-elected to the Senate six times, was the fourth most senior senator at the time of his resignation, and is the 14th-longest serving Senator in history.
Vice President Dick Cheney
Richard Bruce "Dick" Cheney (born January 30, 1941), is the 46th and current Vice President of the United States, serving under President George W. Bush.
Previously, he served as White House Chief of Staff, member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Wyoming, and Secretary of Defense. In the private sector, he was the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Halliburton Energy Services; he is still a major stockholder. On June 29, 2002, he briefly assumed the powers and duties of the presidency as Acting President when Mr. Bush underwent a medical exam involving anesthetics.
President of the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia.
Dr. Henry Kissinger
Henry Alfred Kissinger was the 56th Secretary of State of the United States from 1973 to 1977, continuing to hold the position of Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs which he first assumed in 1969 until 1975.
After leaving government service, he founded Kissinger Associates, an international consulting firm, of which he is chairman.
During Rebecca Rimel's tenure, the Trusts' work has concentrated on results-oriented, strategic philanthropy. The Trusts, under her leadership, has augmented its national programs while maintaining a significant presence in its home city. Through the work of its grantee partners, The Pew Charitable Trusts has earned a reputation as a fact-based, non-partisan broker of innovative ideas and solutions promoting the public interest.
Broadcast journalist Judy Woodruff is the Co-Anchor and Managing Editor of the PBS NewsHour with Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff. She has covered politics and other news for more than three decades at CNN, NBC and PBS.