My Story, With Former Iran Hostage Barry Rosen
Date and time: Thursday, June 4, 2020 at 7:15 to 9:30 pm Eastern Daylight Time (UTC-4)
MY STORY: PAVED WITH GOOD INTENTIONS, a conversation between former Iran Hostage Barry Rosen and Jo Shepherd, professor emerita, Teachers College
Barry Rosen first went to Iran in 1967 for a two year tour of duty as a Peace Corps Volunteer. He returned to Iran, which he now thought of as a ‘second home,’ in 1978 to serve as press attaché for the US Embassy and walked straight into the Iranian Revolution and a consequent global crisis.
Mr. Rosen faced his first challenge on February 14, 1979, when a guerilla group attacked the 26-acre compound with rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons forcing the US ambassador to call on Mr. Rosen to negotiate with the militants and leading to temporary closure of the Embassy and exit of the American staff from Iran. Nine months later hundreds of angry university students successfully breached the Embassy gate and walls and eventually held Mr. Rosen and embassy colleagues hostage. Throughout that time they were subject to torture and threats of death. Their reality was the 444 days without knowing what was going to happen to them.
In this conversation Mr. Rosen will think back to his hostage experience and the psychological aftermath. He will also speak about events in his life subsequent to his release that are related to his captivity. One of these events explains Professor Shepherd’s participation in the conversation. Mr. Rosen and Ms. Shepherd both worked at Teachers College where Mr. Rosen was executive director of external affairs from 1995 to 2006. They will save time for questions.