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One Vermonter's Encounter With Al-Qaeda

Journalist Theo Padnos at his home in Vermont before his fateful trip to Syria in 2012.
Journalist Theo Padnos at his home in Vermont before his fateful trip to Syria in 2012.

When Vermont journalist Theo Padnos slipped into Syria to report on the civil war there, he knew there were risks. What he couldn't have predicted was that he would be kidnapped by Al-Nusra, Al-Qaeda's branch in Syria.

Padnos was held captive there for almost two years. His fluency in Arabic caused suspicion, but also led to engagement with and understanding of his captors. That 22-month ordeal is now the subject of the documentary film Theo Who Lived.

We speak with Padnos about his kidnapping, imprisonment, and survival of nearly two years as an Al-Qaeda prisoner.

Also on the program, UVM economics lecturer John Summa is the producer of a new documentary about Chilean songwriter Victor Jara. We're talking to him about the project: The Resurrection of Victor Jara.

Broadcast live on Tuesday, December 6, 2016 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

Copyright 2016 Vermont Public Radio