On April 21, CID presents a panel discussion of the film Retrograde which captures the final nine months of America’s 20-year war in Afghanistan from various perspectives and the costs endured by those intimately involved in the final stand. The film is Directed by Matthew Heineman, an Academy-Award nominated and Emmy Award-winning filmmaker, Retrograde takes us into the environment from the perspective of the last commander of the Afghan Special Forces and his corps fighting to defend their homeland, civilians attempting to find safe passage as the country collapses and the Taliban return to power, and one of the last U.S. Special Forces units deployed in the country.
To discuss the Retrograde film, CID presents Retrograde's Executive Producer; Baktash Ahadi, Lt. General Sami Sadat, the final commander of Afghan Special Forces who plays himself in the film; Koshal Sadat, Deputy Interior Minister of Afghanistan; and Laura Brisbane who an Australian international lawyer and diplomat specializing in multilateral organizations and global peace and security issues. The event will be moderated by Dr Nishank Motwani, Mid-Career MPA candidate who worked in Afghanistan in senior executive roles.
We will also hear from Thomas Kasza, a U.S. Army Green Beret, a combat veteran who served in Afghanistan. Operated by Green Berets, Tom Kasza is the Executive Director and Founder of the 1208 Foundation, which provides life saving assistance and immigration advocacy to the survivors of National Mine Reduction Group (NMRG) and other Afghans who served with American Special Operators. The NMRG were Afghan citizens who put their lives on the line by clearing IEDs for America’s Special Forces, and for that, it is the 1208Foundation's mission to ensure that America honors its promise by ensuring their welfare and chance at a better life.
The panel discussion will examine international development in Afghanistan from the perspective of what was gained and lost after the Taliban returned to power, contest the myth that Afghan forces did not fight the Taliban, and look at moral injury, particularly for the tens of thousands who were evacuated, left behind, and served or continue to serve in uniform.
trailer for Retrograde is available on YouTube and the film
streams on Disney+.
Registration is required to attend this event. All attendees are also required to check-in using the QR codes at the event. Only open to members of the Harvard Community. Lunch will be served.
Speakers and Presenters
Baktash Ahadi, Retrograde’s Executive Producer; Lt. General Sami Sadat, the final commander of Afghan Special Forces who plays himself in the film; and Koshal Sadat, A former Deputy Interior Minister of Afghanistan; Laura Brisbane, an Australian international lawyer and diplomat specializing in multilateral organizations and global peace and security issues; Dr Nishank Motwani, Mid-Career MPA candidate who worked in Afghanistan in senior executive roles (moderator)
The Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute at Harvard University