David W. Lesch

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David W. Lesch at the 2012 Texas Book Festival.

David W. Lesch is a lecturer, author and commentator on Middle East history and politics. He is Professor of Middle East History at Trinity University (Texas) in San Antonio.[1] Lesch writes regularly for news publications and journals, and has appeared on television discussing Middle East politics, and particularly, Syria.


Lesch gained an M.A. and Ph.D. in History and Middle Eastern Studies from Harvard University in 1991.


  • Syria and the United States: Eisenhower's Cold War in the Middle East (Westview Press, 1992)
  • 1979: The Year that Shaped the Modern Middle East (Westview Press, 2001)
  • History in Dispute: The Middle East Since 1945, Volumes 14 and 15 (St. James Press, 2003)
  • The Middle East and the United States: A Historical and Political Reassessment (editor, Westview Press, 1996, 1999, 2003, 4th edition, 2006)
  • The New Lion of Damascus: Bashar al-Asad and Modern Syria (Yale University Press, 2005)
  • The Arab-Israeli Conflict: A History With Documents (Oxford University Press, 2006)
  • Syrian Foreign Policy and the United States: From Bush to Obama (co-author) (Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2009)
  • The Middle East and the United States: History, Politics and Ideology (co-editor) (Westview Press, 2011)
  • Syria: The Fall of the House of Assad (Yale University Press, 2012 - forthcoming)
  • A Journey through Syria in Time and Place (forthcoming)
  • Historical Dictionary of Syria (co-author) (Scarecrow Press, 2012 - forthcoming)

Public Profile[edit]

Lesch has been asked to appear and discuss Syria and the Middle East on several US radio and television programs, including CNN,[2] MSNBC and CNBC. He has also had opinion pieces in The Financial Times,[3] The New York Times[4] and The Washington Post, among others.

He has travelled frequently to the Middle East on academic, business and diplomatic missions, and was president of Middle East International Business Associates, Inc., a consulting firm that investigated business opportunities in the Middle East for US companies.

In 2004 David Lesch began having regular contact with personal friend Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and has since consulted with US government officials in their attempts to improve relations between the US and Syria.[5]

In May 2008, Dr. Lesch was recognized by Trinity for his outstanding research.[6]

Lesch was also the number one draft pick of the LA Dodgers in 1980 as a pitcher.[7]