YAKIMA, Wash--As part of a statewide program local libraries are inviting people to speak about 9/11. Thursday evening a Yakima professor lectured at Summitview Library.
Enlisting in the National Guard at age 28 Ken Zontek already had a masters in history, he then served in Afghanistan. This gives him a unique perspective on international policy and the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Most of his talk centered on Afghanistan, he said cultural understanding and insight are the key to defeating terrorism. Also working as a humanitarian Zontek spoke passionately about his work with the Ministry of Women's Affairs in Afghanistan.
"We all know that anytime the women are adversely affected, what it does is adversely affect the children and the families. And so there's a lot of human suffering that goes on in Afghanistan. This is a very difficult place to live and survive," said Zontek.
While working with the women's shelter Zontek saw intense suffering. Working with several other agencies he brought in supplies and money to better the lives of abused and often maimed women.
He said there is still much work to be done and Afghanistan is really important strategically for this war. Ken Zontek is a professor of history at Yakima Valley Community College.