Elan Journo

Director and Senior Fellow
Ayn Rand Institute


  • Ethics in foreign policy
  • Arab-Israeli conflict
  • Islamist movement
  • Moral foundations of freedom

Elan Journo is a director and senior fellow at the Ayn Rand Institute. He writes and speaks for ARI; he is a senior editor at New Ideal; and he is an occasional guest instructor at the Objectivist Academic Center. In 2012, he launched ARI’s Junior Fellows Program and led it until 2018.


Mr. Journo specializes in the application of Rand’s ethics of rational egoism to public policy issues, and his research and writing focus on American foreign policy. His 2009 book, Winning the Unwinnable War: America’s Self-Crippled Response to Islamic Totalitarianism, analyzes post-9/11 U.S. foreign policy from the perspective of Rand’s philosophy. He is co-author, with Onkar Ghate, of Failing to Confront Islamic Totalitarianism: From George W. Bush to Barack Obama and Beyond. He is a contributor to Defending Free Speech. His latest book is What Justice Demands: America and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.


His articles have appeared in a wide range of publications, from Foreign Policy and Middle East Quarterly to The Hill and the Los Angeles Times. He has been interviewed on numerous television and radio programs, and he often speaks at conferences and universities.


Mr. Journo holds a BA in philosophy from King’s College, London, and an MA in diplomacy from SOAS, University of London.

Career Roles


Introduction and Intermediate writing, Core Courses
Objectivist Academic Center
2005 – present

Program Lead

Junior Fellows Program in Policy Research
Ayn Rand Institute
2012 – 2018

Writer and Editor

Rand’s ideas; Policy issues
Ayn Rand Institute


Foreign policy; Middle East
Ayn Rand Institute

Selected Work


Book Launch for What Justice Demands, Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C. July 24, 2018

Leadership Program of the Rockies, Denver, CO May 11, 2018

“Twenty Years After Oslo: Where Next for U.S. Policy?” September 10, 2013

Seton Hall University Panel on the Arab Spring March 29, 2012

Symposium: “9/11 — A Decade Later: Lessons for the Future” September 08, 2011

UCLA Conference: “The Philosophic Foundations of Freedom” January 30, 2010

Talks & Lectures

Making Sense of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

The Jihadist Movement

The Israeli/Palestinian Conflict

The “Virtue of Selfishness”? Ayn Rand’s Ethics of Egoism in Your Own Life

“An Introduction to Ayn Rand’s Ideas”

“Our Unwinnable Wars?”

“What’s America’s Stake in the Arab-Israeli Conflict?”

Selected talks and interviews on YouTube

Media Interviews

“Dealing with Iran,” October 29, 2010

“Iran’s Religious Regime,” April 01, 2013

“Passivity in the Face of Violence,” February 01, 2013

“Green on Blue Attacks Rise. Time to Raise White Flag in Afghanistan and Iraq?” June 13, 2013

“Appeasement in the Middle East: Is Obama’s Policy of Weakness to Blame for Muslim Rage?” September 24, 2012

“Do Americans Know the Enemy?” November 12, 2010

“The United Nations” April 26, 2010