About Us

Our Mission

The Institute for Middle East Understanding (IMEU) is an independent non-profit organization that provides journalists with quick access to information about Palestine and the Palestinians, as well as expert sources, both in the United States and in the Middle East. Both through its website and its staff, the IMEU works with journalists to increase the public's understanding about the socio-economic, political, and cultural aspects of Palestine, Palestinians, and Palestinian Americans.

What We Do

The IMEU assists journalists who are working on stories about Palestine or the Palestinians by:

  • Providing access to the latest news stories, expert analysis, photographs and other visuals
  • Maintaining an updated panel of credible experts and analysts who can comment publicly on the news, life and culture of Palestinians and Palestinian Americans.
  • Putting journalists in contact with Palestinian women and men from all walks of life - including artists, poets, businesspeople, medical professionals, policymakers,  and more - who are willing to be interviewed.
  • Compiling an extensive library of images, maps, studies, reports and polls relating to Palestine and the Palestinians
  • Providing a comprehensive set of answers to the most commonly asked questions about Palestine and the Palestinians
  • Supplying links to websites and other online materials that offer journalists a wide range of information on the Palestinian experience. The IMEU provides these links as a service to journalists but it does not necessarily endorse the views or opinions of the various sources. 

What We Believe

Only through increased understanding of the peoples of the Middle East -- their history, their struggles, their rights and aspirations -- can a just and lasting peace be achieved, which is in the interest of all Americans.

Sound public policy is achieved when citizens receive balanced and accurate information from the media. And if journalists have easy access to credible information and analysis about Palestinians, it can only result in a better informed American public.

Diverse opinions are necessary for the free and full exchange of ideas. The IMEU can best serve the media and the public by staying independent and providing access to a range of voices.

All human beings should be treated equally, regardless of gender, faith or national origin - whether they reside in the United States, Palestine, Israel or anywhere else in the world.

Violence is abhorrent -- whether perpetrated by individuals or by states -- and must be repudiated in all its forms.

Who We Are

The IMEU was founded in 2005 by a group of concerned Americans who want to foster an increased understanding among Americans about Palestine and the Palestinians. The IMEU is an independent organization and is not affiliated with any government or political party. It is funded through individual donations and foundations.

Board of Directors

Sam Jadallah, chairman. A Silicon Valley venture capitalist, Jadallah was formerly a senior executive at Microsoft where he was employed for 12 years.

Jaleh Bisharat, president. A marketing consultant and recipient of several marketing awards, Bisharat is senior vice president of marketing at Elance-oDesk, and previously served as the vice president of marketing at Amazon.com, PointCast Inc. and Approach Software.

Lena Khalaf Tuffaha, secretary and treasurer. A media consultant, Khalaf-Tuffaha has written numerous articles on the Middle East and served as press spokeswoman for the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee in Seattle.

Abbas "Eddy" Zuaiter, board member. Zuaiter is the Co-Founder and Managing Member of Zuaiter Capital Holdings, LLC ("ZCH"), a Greenwich, CT based private family office established in 2013. He co-founded ZCH after he retired from Soros Fund Management as Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer. Zuaiter currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Adecoagro, SA, as well as a Board Member of the Arab Bank plc, Capital Holdings Funds plc, and Advisory Board Member of iMENA Group. Additionally, he serves on a number of non-profit boards and associations, including Arab Bankers Association of North America ("ABANA"), Convent of the Sacred Heart-Greenwich, and The Welfare Association.

Financial Statements

The IMEU prepares financial statements audited by an independent accounting firm. View available financial statements.