Virginia Tech expert Mehrzad Boroujerdi, a noted expert on Middle East regional politics and Iran, says the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks and resurgence of Taliban is a time for sober stock-taking of decisions made over the last two decades.

“The morning of September 11, 2001, transformed the threat of Islamic extremism into our national obsession. The miasma of ensuing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq -- with their enormous cost in life and treasure -- did not grant America the luxury of sober decision-making and thinking through the by-products of fateful human processes,” says Boroujerdi.

He references this quote, from many years ago, from British polymath Bertrand Russel: “War does not determine who is right – only who is left.”

“Today what remains is a decapitated Al-Qaeda, a wounded ISIS, a resurgent Taliban which has come to power again, and a less than functioning sovereign Iraq. Alas, war(s) did not prove to be the elixir many had hoped,” says Boroujerdi.

About Boroujerdi

An internationally recognized expert on Iran and Middle Eastern politics, Mehrzad Boroujerdi is the director of Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies. Boroujerdi has written and contributed to a number of books on Iranian society and politics, including "Iranian Intellectuals and the West: The Tormented Triumph of Nativism" (Syracuse University Press, 1996) and "Postrevolutionary Iran: A Political Handbook" (Syracuse University Press, 2018).

He has provided insight and commentary to a number national and international media outlets, including the Associated Press, LA Times, NPR, New York Times, Reuters, Spiegel, and Washington Post, and is a regular commentator on a number of Persian broadcasting networks.


To secure an interview with Boroujerdi, contact Shannon Andrea in the media relations office at; 703-399-9494, or Bill Foy at; 540-998-0288.

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