The United States withdrawal from Afghanistan and the subsequent rapid takeover by the Taliban have raised questions about the war-torn country. What went wrong in Afghanistan? What could have been done differently to lead to a more positive outcome? What’s next for the country and its people?
Sher Jan Ahmadzai, the Director of UNO’s Center for Afghanistan Studies, has a unique connection to this crisis as he has significant experience working with the previous Afghan government as well as loved ones in Afghanistan.
Local, national, and international media outlets have leaned on Ahmadzai’s expertise and insight on the events currently occurring in Afghanistan. The following are different outlets that he has been featured in:
- Yahoo News (National)
- The Conversation (National/International)
- CNN (National)
- NBC’s Today (National)
- Chicago Tribune and affiliated outlets (Chicago)
- KCBS (Los Angeles)
- KETV (Omaha)
- KPTM (Omaha)
- Omaha World-Herald (Omaha)
Ahmadzai has spoken with a number of media outlets in addition to the selection listed here. Between media interviews and his other responsibilities, Ahmadzai was also working from afar to help others evacuate from Afghanistan. He has worked with government agencies, Congressional representatives, and the military to help extract anyone with ties to the center. The Omaha World-Herald reported that he had written letters for as many as 40 Afghans with ties to UNO.
One such Afghan-American caught in the nation was Hanif Sufizada, coordinator of outreach and education programs within UNO’s Center for Afghanistan Studies. He wrote an article for The Conversation which provided a first-hand look at his experiences on the ground in Kabul as he attempted to leave the country in the days following the Taliban’s takeover. The article was republished by numerous media outlets nationally and internationally, including by Univision. Upon his return to the U.S., Sufizada shared his story with CNN International (on-air only) as well as KETV in Omaha.
Retired Dean of International Studies and Programs and Director of the Center for Afghanistan Studies Thomas Gouttierre has also spoken with a number of outlets including the Chicago Tribune, KMTV in Omaha, and KCBS in Los Angeles. His interviews discussed the center’s history in Afghanistan as well as provided reaction and analysis of the latest events.
These media opportunities have enabled Ahmadzai, Sufizada, and Gouttierre to share their experiences and expertise at a local, regional, national, and international level.
Earlier this month, Chancellor Joanne Li, Ph.D., CFA, encouraged all Mavericks to support the UNO Center for Afghanistan Studies so they can continue to make an impact in the region. Consider making a contribution to the UNO Center for Afghanistan Studies Fund for Excellence established through the University of Nebraska Foundation.
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