Saturday, October 7, 2006

Iran and the Balance of Power in the Middle East, Panel Discussion October 18

Chestertown, MD, October 6, 2006 — What is Iran's political agenda? How will a nuclear Iran tip the balance of power in the Middle East? Washington College's Goldstein Program in Public Affairs will address these questions and more in the discussion, "Iran: Dealing with a New Regional Power," featuring panelists Dr. Trita Parsi and Afshin Molavi, Wednesday, October 18, 2006, at 7:30 p.m. in the college's Hynson Lounge. The event is free and open to the public.

Trita Parsi, Ph.D., is the author of Treacherous Triangle: The Secret Dealings of Iran, Israel and the United States (Yale University Press, 2007). He has followed Middle East politics for more than a decade, both through work in the field and through extensive experience on Capitol Hill and the United Nations. His articles on Middle East affairs have been published inThe Financial Times, Jane's Intelligence Review, The Globalist, The Jerusalem Post, The Forward,,, and The Daily Star.He is a frequent commentator on U.S.-Iranian relations and Middle Eastern affairs, and has appeared on BBC World News, PBS NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, CNN, Al Jazeera, C-SPAN, NPR, and MSNBC. He is a co-founder and current president of the National Iranian-American Council (, a non-partisan, non-profit organization promoting Iranian-American participation in American civic life.

Parsi was born in Iran and grew up in Sweden. He earned a master's degree in international relations at Uppsala University, a second master's in Economics at Stockholm School of Economics, and a Ph.D. in international relations from Johns Hopkins University.

Recently nominated by the World Economic Forum as one of 200 young global leaders for the 21st century, Afshin Molavi is the author of the critically acclaimed book Persian Pilgrimages: Journeys Across Iran, which was nominated for the Thomas Cook literary travel book of the year award. Foreign Affairscalled Persian Pilgrimages, "a brilliant tableau of today's Iran," and The Washington Post wrote, "Culturally fluent messengers like Molavi are invaluable, now more than ever."

Born in Iran, but raised and educated in the West, Molavi has written widely on the Middle East, the Muslim world, and the United States—and the links between the three—as a journalist and scholar for more than ten years, with postings in Riyadh, Dubai, Jeddah, Washington, DC, and Tehran, and assignments across the region. He is currently a fellow at the New America Foundation, a non-partisan, Washington-based think tank devoted to pragmatic solutions to global problems.

At New America, Molavi writes on U.S foreign policy, globalization, global economic development, and Middle East affairs. He also advocates for economic dignity as a basic human right and the strengthening of global middle classes—two themes he is exploring for his next book on economic development in the Middle East. A recipient of a Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars Public Policy Fellowship and the Joe Alex Morris Jr. National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations/Los Angeles Times Journalism Fellowship, Molavi holds a master's in Middle East history and international economics from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. He lives in Washington, D.C.

The panel is sponsored by Washington College's Goldstein Program in Public Affairs, established in honor of the late Louis L. Goldstein, 1935 alumnus and Maryland's longest serving elected official. The Goldstein Program sponsors lectures, symposia, visiting fellows, travel, and other projects that bring students and faculty together with leaders in public policy and the media.

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