President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton officially named former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell as the President's special envoy to the Middle East yesterday. The Obama administration has wasted no time in taking on the Israel-Palestine conflict by appointing the well-experienced diplomat, who will report to both the President and the Secretary of State. When introducing Mitchell, Obama said: "George is renowned, in this country and around the world, for his negotiating skill. He will be fully empowered at the negotiating table and he will sustain our focus on the goal of peace." So, what makes Mitchell so capable? For a peek at his resume, and some pictures from throughout the years, read more.
Mitchell's mother was born in Lebanon and his father was an orphan of Irish decent. When it comes to experience, he has a lot, including:
- Served as the Senate Majority Leader for eight years, between 1989 and 1995.
- Turned down an offer to serve on the Supreme Court, so he could stay in the Senate to try to help Bill Clinton pass health care reform.
- Helped broker peace in Northern Ireland.
- Appointed by President Clinton to lead an international commission to investigate causes of violence in the Middle East.
- Led an investigation into the use of steroids in Major League Baseball, releasing a report for the league in December 2007.
- George Mitchell served as the Senate Majority leader between January 3, 1989 to January 3, 1995.
- Mitchell receives the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his work to bring peace to Northern Ireland.
- Mitchell speaks to former Israel PM Ariel Sharon, while serving as head of commission on Israel and Palestine in 2001.
- Mitchell testifies, about his findings regarding professional baseball's steroid use, before the House in early 2008.
- President Barack Obama's newly named Special Envoy to the Middle East at the State Department yesterday.