Join us for a virtual lecture, co-sponsored by the CT Chapter of the United Nations and the Avon Library.
Many in the West consider the Islamic Republic of Iran a dangerous enemy – a member of the axis of evil; a country with nuclear ambitions, contested presidential elections and tumultuous demonstrations. And yet, Iran is the home of the Persian Empire, the ancient ceremonial capital of Persepolis, the first known charter of human rights by Cyrus the Great in 539 BCE and the land of poets Omar Khayyam, Rumi and Hafez. It is also true that Iran is located on land containing the world’s third largest oil reserves. Its government is a Shiite Islamic theocratic government although 10% of the people are Christian, Jewish, Baha’i or Zoroastrian. From 1953-1979, Iran was a close ally of the United States, England and the West, a beacon of stability in the Middle East. The 444 day hostage crisis soured this relationship. The official Iranian media constantly seeks to malign the U.S., yet visitors are welcomed with open arms by its citizens. Just what is the truth about Iran? How does one make sense of the complexity of this mostly barren, mountainous desert land and its 80 million people? How can we understand this civilization continuing to reinvent itself?
About our presenter: Dr. Joseph J. Baxer is President of the United Nations Association of Connecticut and previously served as the US representative to the UN for the London-based NGO, Strategies for Peace. He is engaged in sustaining cultural diversity and mediating cross-cultural conflicts. He has travelled widely with extensive travels to the Middle East beginning in 1972. He has lectured on geo-political topics locally and internationally. A former Connecticut high school principal he has participated in international peace missions to Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. Holding doctorates in Theology and Psychology, his most recent book publication is An Intercultural Life which explores the crossroads of religion and culture. He and his wife live in Kent, Connecticut.
Please register and a Zoom link will be sent out before the event.