tv Ali Velshi on Target Al Jazeera July 15, 2015 3:30am-4:01am EDT
got this close to pluto. and a remindse reminders ass there is let's more on our website. aljazerra.com. for those in the us ali velshi is next for the rest of us the international headlines. i'm "ali velshi on target". a history of hostility, can america and iran trust each other now that a nuclear deal is done. unfinished business - an american held hostage in america looking for a deal of his own. now it gets interesting. after months of often dry diplomatic talk about nuclear physics inspections and sanctions, the united states and its five partners have a deal with iran.
while there's plenty to digest in this 159 page agreement, tonight i want to go beyond the details of a deal requiring iran to curb its nuclear programme in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. instead i want to focus on how various reactions to the deal reflect different narratives about iran, its people and place history. in america, much of the narrative relies on painting iran as an enemy of the united states and its allies. in a statement senator ted cruz says the deal will enrich a regime wrongfully holding united states citizens captive, that is sponsoring terrorism, and regularly promotes the destruction of israel and america through its streets. >> fellow republican senator and hopeful mark marco rubio tweeted it will be left to the next president to return to us a position of american strength and reimpose sanctions on this
despicable regime. some democrats subscribe to this narrative, each if they don't use the sail rhetoric. senator -- same rhetoric. senator men and ez said: -- menendez said: now, with this idea of narrative in mind, i want you to hear some of the reactions to the deal announced earlier this morning by president obama. starting with some of what the president said. >> today after two years of negotiations the united states has achieved something that decades of animosity has not. comprehensive long-term deal with iran will prevent it from obtaining a nuclear weapon. >> it appears we have lost the nuclear programme. >> based on what i know, i'm
highly skeptical at best. mistake. >> this is precisely the outcome that for years we in congress fought to prevent. >> i'm concerned about how much research and development the iranians will be able to do on centrifuge technology. this bad deal does not require iran to seize aggress ibehaviour in any way. >> this is a death sentence if this is not exchanged. you won't want a power plant. he wants a bomb. >> a flawed deal that threatens our country and allies. it. >> i'll veto anything that stops the implementation of this deal. >> the differences are real, and the difficult history cannot be ignored. it is possible to change now, if president obama calls a difficult history between the united states and
iran has been marked by real conflict between the two nations and to appreciate the significance of the deal you have to understand the history of the hostility and the different narratives behind it. there's a history of hostility between iran and the united states that spans decades. for americans, that history dates to 1979. >> there was more chanting and shouting today that's when radical students fired up by the revolution stormed the u.s. embassy in iran, and took 52 americans hostage. their captivity lasted 444 days. for iranians, hostilities with the u.s. started a quarter of a century earlier, when the prime minister led a government at a time when iran was experimenting with democracy. at the thought
height of the cold war. it was dominated by british interests, u.s. leaders accused mosadic of being a communist. >> his crime as saying the money enough. >> at the time iran was getting 16% of what the british said they were making in profits off oil sales. saudi arabia and venezuela were both getting 50%. >> in 1953 the c.i.a. orchestrated the removal of the democraticsly elected but nationalist prime minister, putting the shah in control. over time hatred for the shah and americans that supported him grew game. the c.i.a. occupied the second floor of this, the embassy, a building referred to as a den of spies.
by 1979 iran was in the throws of an islamic revolution. popular protests led by iran's senior muslims clerics opposed the shaw and denounced the u.s. role in supporting him. until that point america never faced off against a political motivation. >> things came to a head when student protesters breached the walls of tehran, and justified their approach on iranian fears, that the u.s. might support another coup, bringing the shah back to power. diplomatic relations were worse. in the 1980s they accused the u.s. of backing iran during the war. the u.s.s. "vincense" struck down a passenger dat killing 290
people. the u.s. never apologised for the attack. despite the bad blood most iranians we talked to say they like americans. policy. >> i like america. i like american muscle cars. i don't hate america. seven years have passed. the current people that you see. if they are 40 years or younger, they have no memory of the shah's regime. negotiations. >> our national security... >> now that a deal on the programme is in place with the u.s. and other world powers. some hope it signals a new direction, but it will not happen overnight.
>> the president obama's administration says in one view they've been disfunctional. >> the coauthor of going to tehran, why americans must accept the republic of iran and a scholar of george down university. after spending two weeks in tehran, i have to think they were flying the same game -- playing the same game. they seemed signed for an iranian audience not for success in vena. we are here today where they were able to overcome whatever inhibitions they had. and trike a deal i hope and expect will be the foundation for better policy.
i assume in get ght the deal, john kerry had to do with hassan rouhani what others had to do. they had to figure out what happens next. in the case of president obama, it's how do i get a deal. what do i do with it back home. that's a mathematics issue. it's more about selling it home as a deal. >> yes it's critically important. they do not have the promise to overthrow the detail of president obama by the deal. i think their strategy is important. their strategy is to have as many senators and congress to vote down the deal, to she in the 2016 race, that even though president obama may have been able to success fully override veto.
the majority of the elected representatives do not agree with the deal. it will be a key stumbling block for president barack obama and any group going forward. >> i want to ask you about the idea of what the president has to do to make more americans like the deal. the opponents of the deal have been effective. whether you like it. they have convinced most americans, the narrative is that iran is run by crazy out of touch leaders of the no one thinks of iran as a negotiating part near. iran was determined to feel like an equalizing partner. you almost have to legitimize sense. >> to me that is the absolutely essential point and why i co-wrote with my husband. going to tehran.
why america must accept the islamic republic of iran. that is the key. as nixon and keiser accepted the republic of china. we have to accept the islamic republic, that warts and all is their system. hafs a hart fort system with a hated shah imposed by the gates. it's their system warts and all. what has to happen is for us to accept it. this is a nar renarrow deal -- is a narrow deal with iran as the evil player. that will not fly. if you talk about an evil country it matters how many centrifuges they have.
details will be critical. it will be hard to sell with an evil country, will it be enough. >> president carter tried to do na in the 1970s, with the soviet union, and failed with a democratically controlled congress. the treaty went up in olympic games. i'm concerned president obama could take the same approach. that's why, again, it's important to focus on the security council. >> it's not just an american problem. there has been 36 years of demonizing iran. it's hard to back pedal. >> thank you for joining us. the co-author of going to tehran. israel calls the deal a make
israeli prime minister binyamin netanyahu had a strained relationship with president obama. the discord reached a peak in march when binyamin netanyahu broke with roto cole and addressed -- protocol and addressed the u.s. congress without an invitation of the white house. israeli and u.s. relations may be tested as never before of the let's get more of the israeli perspective from a likud member of the knesset. she joins us from tel aviv. thank you for joining us. you share some, at least, of prime minister binyamin netanyahu's view that not only is the deal flawed, but negotiations towards this were destroyed. -- flawed. >> thank
you for having me. i would like to say the problem is not all about israel. it's about the recession, and the problem with this agreement is around the stability of the whole region and war. we are not speaking about the western world. today it's bastille day, 14th of july, and this is the head of the other - the arab world, israel and the west on the guillotine of iran. it's not less than that. i think that the west choose to put the eggs in the basket of the shia regime. to get stability in this region. if illusion - it's illusion because we see what iran is doing, conducting state-sponsored terrorism. by proxy.
in yemen, in syria, in iraq, in lebanon. and cause dodge to so many countries. it's not with the um brala of the nuclear weapon, what will be, will be the race to get the nuclear weapon in the region, and the race between sanaa radical iran, to get the influence in the west. here is the question. i hear the criticism, what is the solution. what is a better solution in a deal. what was likely to happen if we didn't get the deal. >> the better deal is to get a better deal, not to pour money on rain, and in
such a way to carry on with more politics. i think that the west will pay in the perspective of history because they didn't learn to listen from the history in the long run. >> here is the question. israel suggests it's an existential threat to israel. behind israel, not just to the west, but the whole world. what happens now, it looks like it's a march towards a deal. what does israel do next. israel nose what to do with iran, and other states or terrorists that threaten israel. i think that the whole region will suffer more, and we see the reaction of this aggression. we'll see it's a problem. binyamin netanyahu was the only leader upon us that dared to say
what needs to say, and all the others said it in closed rooms. >> a member of the knesset and foreign affairs, thank you for joining us tonight. >> coming up next, the deal with iran is personal. a former u.s. embassy worker held hostage in the islamic revolution. he tells us what he thinks about >> these are babies in prison. >> he stood in that bathroom and nobody went to help him. >> how many people have to get raped before somebody says "whoa, we got a problem"? >> "faultlines". >> what do we want? >> al jazeera america's hard-hitting... >> today the will be arrested. >> ground-breaking... >> they're firing canisters of gas at us. >> emmy award-winning, investigative series. >> we have to get out of here.
pluto. w is ca the nuclear deal announced today is personal for the americans taken hostage in iran 36 years ago. as you heard earlier, they were working at the u.s. embassy when they were kidnapped and held captive. that was the breaking point in relations between the two country, now that a door has been opened, former hostages are
hoping to get the restitution they have been seeking. march. >> reporter: when don peers into the past and his 444 days of captivity, he sees unfinished business and wants to make iran pay. cook was among the youngest of 52 americans taken hostage in 1979 after the shaw was overthrown in a revolution. he recalls the blind folding, led to mock firing squads. more than three cook considered himself one of the lucky ones. >> others didn't. of my colleagues that really, in some cases, took it to their grave, never got over it. >> he feels it's his responsibility to speak on their behalf in demanding iran comment captivity. >> it would be a statement on the part of the iranians that they accept responsibility for
the wrong that they have committed. >> the reason iran has not had to pay is the algiers accord, the agreement that ended the hostage crisis stated that the hostages could not take legal action against iran. the u.s. struck to that agreement. the attorney for the former hostages, tom langford has been trying to undo that part of the decade. >> it wrecked marriages. people attempted and committed suicides. he says the only way to get justice from iran at this point is through money. >> i think it would bring some closure to a horrific part of their lies. >> the only compensation cook and others received came from the u.s. government and was for $22,000, amounting to $50 for each day they were held. >> as an expression of gratitude on the part of the u.s. government and the american
people, i find that satisfactory. as compensation for the harm caused to me by the government of the iran, woefully inadequate, and the iranians didn't pay it. >> some lawmakers want to try a different approach to set up a fund to comment former hostages. the idea put forward is to add a surcharge to penalties and fines to businesses or persons who violateded certain conditions. 36 years after the embassy was seized in tehran, the former hostages and their attorney know that time is of the essence. >> the crisis that separated the two countries was the kidnapping of the embassy. there can't be a new understanding until that has been remedied.
>> john was working as a foreign services officer at the u.s. embassy in iran. he was among those held hostage. that's him waving in a photo taken after iran released the hostages. he served as a deputy assistant secretary of state for iran during the obama administration. he's author of a book, negotiating with iran, wees lings the ghost of history, and heins me now. >> thank you for being with us, as someone that was part of history, what does the deal mean to you? >> thank you for the invitation. no, it's been 35-36 years from now, and unfortunately two things have happened. one is that we and the iranians, until now, essentially, have been unable to communicate with each other on any subject.
communications has been mostly shouting at each other. presidents eight years ago said they need to change this, talk to each other over - not necessarily to be friends, but over a range of issues. one of them is to somehow exercise the ghosts of the past. including the shameful incident of capturing the embassy and holding people as captives for over a year. >> i was there last week at the embassy, it's a monument of the revolution. the seal defaced. there's writing outside things that are not complimentary about america. you want iran to renounce the hostage taking, but you want the u.s. to saj what you write are the uglier aspects.
we have talked about the coup in iran, a flight by the u.s.s. "vincenz." in the counter climate, what are the chances of either of those things happening? >> in one way or another they have to happen. if you ignore history, and if you ignore some of the uglier aspects of the past, they don't go away. they are continuing to fester, and they will come up from - they will come up from time to time. i call them the coast. if you ignore the ghost, weigh saw this when the iranians - you ask what were they thinking about, were they thinking at all. did they misread how that appointment would be viewed.
however you confront it. i don't have a magic formula, but the first step in these things is not to forget them. you can't forget that they happened, but the first step is to acknowledge them. >> it is interesting, because people who were not born in 1979 were telling me the stories of the revolution, which they oak as iran taking its democracy back, 1963 and the shooting of the rain plane. none of it justifies taking hostages. is there a failing in our ability to understand that the narrative about america is different to what hours is. >> i teach history and political science. it strikes me - we talk about this with my students. it seems like as americans, we don't remember anything, and as
the iranians - they don't forget anything. we have to come to a meeting of the minds, at least to acknowledge the other side's view, and the way they look at a situation, and the way they look at a relationship. >> sir, you are quite a big man to look at it with on open mind. i'm not sure the rest of us can be held captive for more than a year and see it as clearly as you do. >> john is a former hostage held in iran, deputy assistant from iran >> my heart is racing so fast. >> standing at a crossroads. >> my parents have their plan... i'm gonna do what god asks me to do before what they ask me to do. >> can a family come together? >> do you think that you can try and accept me for me? >> life changing moments. >> my future is in my hands right now. >> from oscar winning director alex gibney. a ground breaking look at the real issues facing american
teens on - the greek parliament debates a bailt deal known prevent the country's economy from collapsing. ♪ ♪ hello, this is al jazerra live from doha. also ahead on the program. protests in japanese parliament as legislation that could allow troops to fight a broad for the first time since world war ii is introduced. iran's prime minister arrives back home after winning a historic nuclear deal with world powers. and so mall mom i can't's ch