By Maureen Nicolace
For Hometown News
INDIAN RIVER COUNTY -- "Israel can live with nuclear Iran" is the topic of the inaugural Distinguished Lecturer Series debate to be held at Riverside Theatre on April 15.
The debate will feature four expert debaters, two for and two against, each representing their competing perspectives, assumptions and logic.
Attendees will register their "pre-debate" vote upon arrival, and then will again cast their vote after hearing both sides of the argument. A reception will be held at 5 p.m., with the debate running from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m.
"We envision that the DLS Debates will be a blend of the Oxford Union and robust English style debating, covering some of the more serious and difficult issues facing our leadership and our nation," explained Don Laurie, a committee member of Riverside Theatre's Distinguished Lecturer Series and one of the coordinators of the debate.
An impressive panel of debaters is lined up, promising to make the evening lively and intellectually provocative.
The two debaters arguing FOR the motion are Dr. Roxane Farmanfarmaian, an Iranian whose family ruled Iran for hundreds of years prior to Shah Reza Pahlavi. She is an Affiliated Lecturer in International Relations of the Middle East and North Africa, University of Cambridge; and Dr. Paul Pillar, whose 28-year career in the U.S. Intelligence community included being chief of analytic units at the C.I.A. covering portions of the Near East, the Persian Gulf, and South Asia, as well as serving as National Intelligence Officer for the Near East and South Asia.
The two arguing AGAINST are Bret Stephens, a former editor-in-chief of The Jerusalem Post who is currently the foreign affairs columnist for the Wall Street Journal and deputy editorial page editor responsible for the editorial pages of the Journal's European and Asian editions; and Reuel Marc Gerecht, an American diplomat who serves as senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, focusing primarily on Middle East diplomacy, Islamic militancy, counterterrorism and intelligence.
John Gordon, co-founder of the highly acclaimed "Intelligence Squared" debate forum based in the United Kingdom, will be the moderator for the debate.
Tickets are $40 for adults and $12 for students.
The debate will be held on the Stark Mainstage at Riverside Theatre, located at 3001 Riverside Park Drive in Vero Beach. More information about the debaters may be found online at www.RiversideLecturerSeries.com/debates, and tickets may be purchased through the Riverside Theatre box office at (772)231-6990.