Wright lectures on war in the Middle East

Thousands of interested faces began to fill the seats as 7 o’clock approached. A live band played, images projected on a large screen and ushers prepared people for what would be the Bryan Series’ opening speaker, Robin Wright.

At 7:30 p.m., lights dimmed and the Series began.

“Hello Greensboro,” said Wright. “I have covered every war in the Middle East so far.”

Wright has been involved with journalism for over four decades. She has been to over 140 countries, covering stories as a writer, journalist and foreign affairs specialist.

Wright kicked off the Bryan Series on Oct. 1 at the Greensboro Coliseum.

“I think (bringing someone to Greensboro who is on the frontline of journalism) is fantastic,” said Greensboro resident Wynn McGregor.

Wright spoke about Iran, Syria, Iraq and Saudi Arabia, all of which are currently involved in warfare in the Middle East. Of all of these countries, Saudi Arabia is the only ally of the United States.

Wright discussed how despite Saudi Arabia being an ally of the U.S., it did not have much in common with us, such as women’s rights. Women are not allowed to drive, work or leave the country, but according to Wright, a majority of Saudi Arabia is female.

“I particularly liked how Robin spoke about the four countries dealing with warfare,” said McGregor. “I had no idea of the youngness of the population and that 64 percent of Saudi Arabia is women. It gives me an optimistic hope for the future of women everywhere.”

Wright also went into depth about how each country is affecting the Middle East, the controversies in each country and how the U.S. needs to be cautious of the future.

“The entire room was very attentive,” said Clemmons resident William O’Neill. “Her speech was very laid out and easy to follow. She was very real-world, and her delivery of the speech felt down-to-earth and personable.”

Though Wright was only at the Coliseum for 90 minutes, many were impacted by her visit.

“Robin gave a great talk and was well received,” said Associate Vice President for the Bryan Series and Advancement Communications Ty Buckner. “Many people praised her understanding of Middle East issues.”

As for the future of the Bryan Series this season, we can look forward to four more speakers and plenty of new and impactful topics.

“I had a wonderful time here,” said Wright to The Guilfordian. “It was a great crowd. When people are interested in learning and listening, it really gives me hope for the future.”