Let’s Talk Iran (and stuff)

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Shervin Malekzadeh Gives Knowledge to the People!

June 8th, 2016

Shervin Malekzadeh is one of the most thoughtful guys writing about Iran-related issues today. He’s a Visiting Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania’s Middle East Center. Prior to that, he was a Visiting Assistant Professor in Political Science at Swarthmore College. He received his PhD in Government from Georgetown University, and his research focuses on the politics of schooling, culture and identity in post-revolutionary Iran. Shervin and I talked about the interplay between state and society in Iran, his fieldwork in Iran during the past three elections, and female lead singers in rock bands.


Erich Ferrari, Sanctions, and You.

May 5th, 2016

When it comes to sanctions law, Erich Ferrari is one of the best in the business.  From DC to Dubai and everywhere in between, he helps his clients appeal U.S. government decisions to freeze their assets and cut them off from America’s financial system. He is also a man of the people, sharing his expertise with Iranian Americans across the U.S. in an effort to help them make informed decisions. Erich talks with Reza about sanctions after the nuclear deal, pros and cons of sanctions as a foreign policy tool, and his top five emcees in hip hop.


Iranican Promotes Unity through Dialogue and Tolerance

September 20th, 2012

We had the wonderful opportunity to interview the hosts behind Iranican, a non-profit, volunteer-based organization based in the Silicon Valley whose mission is to explore issues affecting “Generation Iranian-American". This is done via radio and video interviews and shows as well as via an online blog. The Iranican team uses entertainment in order to educate and discuss communal issues.


Ronny & the “Israel Loves Iran” Campaign

September 6th, 2012

In this episode, we chat with Ronny Edry, an Israeli graphic designer, teacher, father, husband, and, most recently, known world-wide as the founder of the “Israel Loves Iran” campaign which later grew to become the “We Love You” community. The “We Love You” movement began on March 14 of this year when Ronny uploaded a poster of him and his daughter holding an Israeli flag. The poster said: “Iranians, we will never bomb your country. We love you.” Attached to the poster was also a letter that Ronny penned to the people of Iran. In it, he expressed his desire to prevent war and better understand his Iranian counterparts. Within hours, the poster and letter became viral and return messages started pouring in from Iran. The “We Love You” movement now has a loyal following all over 63 countries and its presence on the web and on Facebook is growing daily, with millions having viewed its videos and heard its message.


Congressman Kucinich Urges Obama to Suspend Sanctions

August 22nd, 2012

Last week, NIAC worked closely with Congressman Dennis Kucinich and 13 of his colleagues to advance a letter urging President Obama to suspend sanctions that prevent aid organizations from working in Iran and prevent Americans from sending charitable donations to earthquake victims -- a step that was taken in 2003 when an earthquake struck the Iranian city Bam. Yesterday (August 21), we have the extraordinary opportunity to talk with Congressman Dennis J. Kucinich (D-OH) after the Obama Administration announced a general license effectively suspending sanctions to allow humanitarian relief for 45 days.


Justine Shapiro & “Our Summer in Tehran”

August 9th, 2012

We speak with Jewish-American filmmaker Justine Shapiro. Justine is the former host of the travel series GlobeTrekker and was nominated for an Oscar for her documentary called “Promises,” which gave us a look into the lives of Palestinian and Israeli children in and around Jerusalem. Justine's newest documentary, "Our Summer in Tehran" shows us the seldom seen realm of middle class family life in Iran. In the film, Justine and her 6-year-old son Mateo go to Tehran to spend the summer with 3 families: a religious family with ties to the government; a cosmopolitan, secular family; and a single mom who is an actress.


Lessons from the Jewish-American Community

July 26th, 2012

The AIPAC membership is only a fraction the size of the membership for the other top two lobbying organizations in the U.S., those being the AARP and NRA. How has AIPAC has been able to reach such a level of influence? How do Jewish-American organizations interact and balance cooperation and competition? How does the community handle internal disputes? Find out the answers to these questions and more from former executive director of American Israeli Public Affairs Commitee (AIPAC), Tom Dine.  Currently, Tom serves as the Senior Policy Advisor for the Israel Policy Forum and will be participating as a panelist in NIAC’s 2012 Leadership Conference this fall.


Sahar Fathi: Candidate for Washington’s 36th District

July 12th, 2012

In this episode, we had the pleasure of talking with Sahar Fathi, candidate for State Representative in Washington’s 36th district. Sahar spent time working internationally for the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and currently sits on the board of the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project and ACLU-Washington. When she was 26, Sahar started the Middle Eastern Legal Association of Washington, the first legal clinic primarily for people of Middle Eastern descent in the country. For the past three years, Sahar has worked as a legislative aide to Seattle City Councilmember Mike O’Brien where she is lead policy staff on homelessness, immigrant and refugee issues, public safety, civil rights, energy and green jobs, and the city budget. If elected, Sahar would be the first Iranian-American or Middle Eastern-American woman to serve in any state legislature across the country. To learn more about Sahar, visit www.electsahar.com.


The Root Cause of Apple’s Discrimination

June 27th, 2012

In this episode, you will hear from Sahar Sabet, a young Iranian-American woman who was recently denied the ability to purchase Apple products from an Apple store in Alpharetta, Georgia. This incident has garnered international media coverage and left the Iranian-American community in outrage. NIAC's Policy Director, Jamal Abdi tells us how sanctions are at the root of the racial profiling/discrimination that was faced by Sahar and many other Iranian Americans across the nation.


CA State Senate Stands Up for Iranian Human Rights

June 15th, 2012

Recently, the California State Senate passed SR 29, a Senate Resolution authored by State Senator Sam Blakeslee which recognizes the contributions of the Iranian-American community and calls upon the Iranian government to provide basic human rights and political freedoms to its citizens. The Senator partnered with several Iranian-American organizations, including NIAC and Human Rights for Iran in order to take the Resolution from concept to reality.  Tune in as we discuss this latest achievement with Senator Blakeslee.