Trinity University, San Antonio | News Release



CONTACT:  Mary Anthony

Jan. 5, 2011


Journalist to Speak about the War in Afghanistan at Trinity University


SAN ANTONIO – Iason Athanasiadis, writer, photographer, and television producer, will discuss "Afghanistan: The Long War" at 4 p.m. Tuesday Jan. 25, in Northrup Hall Room 040. The lecture is free and open to the public. Tickets or reservations are not required.

The United States has now been in Afghanistan for longer than the Soviet occupation of the 1980s. Imbedded and a Farsi-speaker, Athanasiadis lives part of the year in Kabul, traveling around the country. Whether interviewing former Taliban commanders in Herat or covering the corruption-plagued September parliamentary elections from Mazar-e Sharif, he offers a ground view of America's Long War and its effects on ordinary Afghans.

Athanasiadis has been covering the Middle East, Central Asia, and the southeast Mediterranean since 1999. He lived in Iran from 2004-2007, covering conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, and Lebanon for the international media including The New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, American Prospect, British Journalism Review and the South China Morning Post. Athanasiadis covered the 2003 invasion of Iraq from Qatar for al-Jazeera, the 2004 Athens Olympics for BBC World, and the 2006 Israeli-Hizbullah war in Lebanon as a freelancer. At the same time, his photography has been featured in solo exhibitions in Germany, Greece, Iran, and the United States, and his work published in Der Spiegel and the Los Angeles Times, among other newspapers and magazines.  

While covering the national elections in Iran in 2009, Athanasiadis was arrested and jailed on espionage charges in the notorious Evin Prison for 18 days before being released. During spring of 2010, he was imbedded with NATO troops in Afghanistan. In the fall of 2010, he was in Afghanistan covering the elections. Athanasiadis currently makes his home in Istanbul.

A native of Greece, Athanasiadis was a 2008 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University. He earned degrees in Arabic and Modern Middle Eastern Studies at Oxford University as well as a master's degree in Persian and Contemporary Iranian Studies at Tehran's School of International Studies. He is an Aristotle Onassis Foundation scholar and has lectured on Iran at Berkeley, Dartmouth, Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Yale, and other universities.

The lecture is sponsored by the departments of political science, religion, history, international studies, communication, sociology & anthropology, art & art history, and Lecturers and Visiting Scholars Committee.

In addition, SOLI Chamber Ensemble, Trinity's ensemble-in-residence, will present a concert, "Middle East Journey," at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 24, in the Ruth Taylor Recital Hall. General admission for the concert is $20 at the door. Free admission for Trinity students, faculty, and staff presenting a Trinity ID and $10 for non-Trinity students with school ID. Athanasiadis will present a pre-concert talk at 7 p.m.

For more information, contact Mary Anthony in the Office of University Communications at 210-999-8441.




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