The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) has announced that Colin Kahl has returned to the think tank as a senior fellow to focus on Middle East issues and defense policy.

Kahl first joined CNAS as a senior fellow in 2007 and left in 2008 to serve in the Obama administration as deputy assistant secretary of defense for the Middle East, where he was instrumental in overseeing the drawdown and transition strategy in Iraq.

“I had a timeline for leaving just like the U.S. had a timeline for leaving. It wasn’t a coincidence,” Kahl told the Cable.

Authoring a report addressing the options the United States has in facing Iran’s nuclear weapons ambitions will be Kahl’s first order of business upon his return to CNAS.

Kahl will also rejoin Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service.