tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN April 14, 2015 7:00am-9:01am EDT
hold iraq inside iraqi peace and also deter future aggressions if it happens, god forbid. the second one is reconstruction. i do not mean by reconstruction a series of contracts to restore the houses, restore the roads and whatever the war and the conflict have destroyed. .com talking about reconstruction and since our historical understanding of the term reconstruction when i speak to an american audience. the post-civil war, united states, that there. we're talking about not just the reconstruction of what was destroyed by the war but reconstruction of politics reconstruction of the political infrastructure, the economic infrastructure, the social infrastructure, and reconstruction of the nation that can function in the future and doesn't fall like and with
the next challenge into the same trouble that we were just, or we are coming out of. and that is the important. iraq does not and should not take this task alone. i do not believe that we do have an iraq in the expertise to do this. iraqis as a government, as a political class need to be humble a little bit and look at what other countries have done the post-conflict situations, learn from their own history and the history of others come and seek as much expertise rather than invent the wheel or get the task to again similar to the system of politics in iraq and end up not doing the job right and having to redo it time and again. so that is the other issue. and the third is reconciliation. and the last to reconstruction and reconciliation should be
hand in hand. they don't have to be one after the other because i said already it is to come first before anything else. what is reconciliation? a couple of days ago daniel serwer and myself on the conference and it was a talk about the conflict between those who are urging us to think in the box and those who are urging us to leave the box and think and let the outside the box. i think you we need to think out of the box. the box in iraq has been as the following, as follows, reconstruction sorry reconciliation meant giving more positions to politicians from this faction of this sect or this ethnic group or that one. and if you already gave a certain percentage to the groups and all of those politicians did such a lousy job that their own people revolted against them giving tumor ministry to them
will not solve the problem. -- to more ministry. look at where it has not been done in iraq. iraq for the last 12 years has been doing nothing other than reconciliation it in the wrong place, among politicians. and every time a politician doesn't get the job will go and raise, you know, becoming rabble-rouser anthony kim it's like we never done any reconciliation. you need to reconcile its people with each other. we have not been any reconciliation at the popular level and as long as there are people who are disenchanted disenfranchised, and i'm not talking about here one group or another. are people who are louder and to get the media and the people who are silent. i can tell you that every iraq you right now out of the ruling class is disenfranchised
disenchanted, living in subhuman conditions. there's just some people are probably less vocal about it. because of the background, let's face it. if you ask every iraqi they will look at what they were and what they are right now. the shia think that life is great right now because they have the same terrible position that under saddam hussein but they have allies as a right, not as a privilege anymore. so it looks better, a step forward but i would not argue that a place in basra is better in any way of governance or services or anything like that. night's from haditha or from any place, et cetera. it is all right now underserved. it is all not served in many places, and the problem with iraq right now is you really need to get out of that fixed idea of reconciliation by
reconciling the political groups, to reconciling the people. if the people are content are happy, they are happy with the system, we know that. they are unhappy with the government and the ruling class. you do not find iraqis saying let's go back to dictatorship or let's destroy what we have right now. no. they have a problem with the government. not the institutional framework not the way iraq is going. so these three things, if we start thinking about them creatively, i think we're going somewhere. if we do not then we are not just trusting but we are guaranteed to run another round of trouble in iraq and the ball is in the court of the iraqi government. the iraqi politicians. again, also i would say the international community that is dealing with iraq because will
have to think about this in the right way. thank you very much, and thank you again, this trimester. thank you, professor serwer. [applause] i'm going to open the floor to questions. i see the microphone that i was looking for. you'll have to come to the microphone so that the audiovisual stuff will work right, or the microphone will be brought to you if you're in an inner slot. the floor is open and i ask you to identify yourselves before you speak. i will take to questions at a time. won there. >> thank you very much for a very interesting panel. i wanted to -- >> please identify yourself. >> i'm from inside iraq.
sorry about that. i want to pick up on the three hours. some american political -- i want to pick upon the reconstruction one. we think of reconstruction and training some of it took 100 years, maybe until the 1960s until sold in limited. the question i have is how do you see i'm sorry, on the reclaiming of land you talked we have to reclaim ninevah. that's obvious, from daesh. what about the disputed territories between the krg and the rest of dispute territories? >> thank you. let me take another question right here. spent thank you. executive director of the iraq
foundation. i like the three r's too. my question is about reconciliation of people's. of course, i agree with you. it's just how do you think of doing it? >> doing what? >> reconciliation of the people. >> at the popular double. mr. ambassador, which are like to start us off? >> sure. i mean kirkuk, disputed territories and others, sometimes people think that they should be historical discussion because the situation after isis the fact has forced itself. that might be true and maybe in an academic sense, but in the reality to the history of iraq in which the tribal society
peoples pride is important for them, or perceived pride is also important. people's understanding that things were not taken under duress, but it was more in what you might call a constructive way. for us for the constitution to implement it there are sometimes loopholes in the constitution which people have taken advantage of in that sense. so there's a lot of balance to be made to eating bit of isis has been an up or factor for all parties. that's a good son. people are not taking advantage of that now. they no longer realize they no longer are resigned to the fact that isis can be used for the politics of iraq. everybody using that. the political class, majority of the sunni politicians are in exile because of that. the shia are merely now
although they feel safer now than before, they also know that isis will keep being a threat to them certainly with the kurdish krg over 1000 climate a border with isis moving forward. so in that sense i was at the cryptic question is still standing. there's questions regarding the oil share and others. we still haven't resolved the consensus for counting our people, census, for the census. still an outstanding issue. i would say what we've done is tried to do initial steps of possibility measures. one thing which is part of the three r's and part of the point of ports to understand or to highlight, sorry, that is where not a very reflective society. we do same mistakes. for a number of reasons. these are what you might call
heritage of dictatorship. it didn't allow you to think. let alone it allowed you to have the infrastructure of civil society or others to come up to a decision, to reflect any very open constructive way, see where the box is, outside inside the box or others. that was not allowed. so here now we are learning democracy in a harsh way in a tough area, in a tough neighborhood. and as a result because we are not very reflective we did same mistakes again and again. that's not something i like but that's the reality of it as well. time itself in the whole region is relative. i'm not talking about from any standpoint here. am talking about in the political point of view. it's what you might call -- that in itself is a very problematic issue.
and by the way this majority frustrates our western partners when they talk about. to ask is what does that mean? so it's another issue to bear in mind. we need to define boxes. i get the doctor, i grant that. we need to define boxes. that box might be a timeline or a precondition in another. but because of the married of parameters involved here in decision-making, we sometimes think we leave it to god. that's another problem we have so it's an area we need to look at. i would say to be honest in a very open you, the answer is the jury is still out as how we resolve these disputes. the are what you might call confidence-building measures. it's important that we trust each other. element of trust because of the interdependency which we now realize. there was, you know when they
stay children are brought up and they go from dependency to independence, to interdependency. we are at the end in dependency stage. post-isis has told us that. that we need each other. still hasn't told us how do we need each other. that's for us to find out in our politics. >> personal reconciliation? >> i think it was also i have a word or two about reclaiming. when i spoke about reclaiming i was speaking about reclining of ungoverned spaces a space that is well governed by the region or by the federal government at this point. and maybe ambassador or myself are coming from different points of view. he is more with, again, what the government affairs and they pay for but i'm talking about my personal convictions that i held all along.
i think at this point who governs kirkuk it doesn't matter. this is not similar to isis getting hold of most will are getting hold of a chunk of anbar -- that's we need to decide because at the end of the day it makes a difference if kurdistan is going tomorrow tomorrow here is long-term or short-term, to be another state, then it matters who governs its places. and it comes who cares where 10 kilometers fall here or there. i think one of the things that has to be done with the reconstruction the iraqis have to settle the issue of the future of kurdistan in the
immediate future. there has to be a decision referendum, whatever it is to end that question once and for all. and italy that the kurds, if they decide to go for it, it is their right, no one in the 21st century would tell people to stay by icann to stay with the country are not. but that would be really construction and the reconciliation face. how do you make a reconciliation talks i'm thinking here of the two issues but one of them good local governments. good government at the local level. it will deny the politicians who want to create trouble for the government for the system and the other demagogues will deny them the support and backing. i supervise the jesus one day when i was in the old time at the nds on the a month
experience -- the man heavy-handed policy from shooting at the people to investing in those areas to making their life better, to changing the place to a world-class place and then the people who are in that area who are raising against the government would tell their latest, we do not really need to revolt anymore, just go away. we're happy with what we're getting. that's the kind of system. and again this has to do with all of the country. there is more disenchantment in basra than in anbar. the other part is to think about the reconciliation. it's really to think about a national level reconciliation rather than just looking at the political class. you need to look at all the experiences that were there whether, and to don't have iraq
is different of course set of historical facts. you need to borrow from the other, not copy their systems. but definitely there needs to be a very good international effort. it has to be done scientifically scientifically, not the way iraqis have been going about it. but these are the things that i'm thinking about. just make people's lives better you will not have politicians who will support you with demonstrations and isis every other year or every other six months. >> as i teach these three r is, not the other three countries here at sais maybe i can offer a sentence or two about the reconciliation issue, specially at the more interpersonal level. i think the literature is very clear that the absolute prerequisite for reconciliation
is acknowledgment of harm. in the iraqi case it will have to be neutral acknowledgment of harm in several different directions. that's a very difficult thing to do it it is not easy when you feel you've been harmed to acknowledge the harm that's been done to others. but that's the step they get you out of this spiral, the downward spiral of violence. i haven't seen it happen yet in iraq, i look forward to the day when it begins. i have two questions here somewhere. >> thank you very much for sleeping in very candid presentation and thank you.
ambassador faily come your ambassador in washington after all. we want to hear about washington. as ambassador to washington and you wished to encourage united states support for prime minister abadi's government, and for the change that's happened since september 2014. what do you ask for? what are your bullet points when you speak to the u.s. government to the u.s. congress, to ask them to support the iraqi government? thank you. >> while you're contemplating repealing all the secrets of the iraqi government, let me take one more question. >> we want you to be as candid as you were in your presentation presentation. >> thank you very much, and i'm from the education center.
thank you for the ambassador and for doctor of laws for the remarks. my question is not about revealing secrets but it's about analyzing a situation that happened in tikrit. mr. ambassador come you mentioned iraqi sunni tribes played a role in expelling isis from the city. how important is it for the iraq government to be legislation can not only in tikrit and in those areas but pretty good for the operation to clear transit and? >> your second question, that's a prerequisite. even if we have the capability without the localities i'm afraid the decision for us not to get engaged in any theater operation geopolitically
prerequisite is to get the engagement of locals. however, it takes, whatever you need to do to do that, but we are determined to have the locality to participate in it. and also in what you might call or the college or the post-stabilization forces. that's also another issue. so that's an area we are working on. mosul, the scale of the city the police officers, the local services needed to be provided and so on. the clock is ticking in which refugees who are displaced inside the country. refugees always create social upheaval in any areas that could do because of the nature of the problem itself. accommodations, schools, everything else. so we need them to go back to their homes. it's an area we have come to before, but at the same time politically we know each other,
preconditions of localities. as far as washington is concerned, and i am an open book as you know in the sense there are quite a few requests we have made. the key issue we have had has been the administration. the administration has been what i call very understanding of the challenges. because of the people, he got the the tropical of people both sides and because of the close relationship, so many conferences and others with the families have but officials. however we do have an issue with congress for them to appreciate the politics. an issue of blaming everything on prime minister maliki we need to move away from the. we need to look at the core issues and the court challenges we face because of the common interest we have. so understanding of politics and the nuances of it is a mission for us to do.
we are here to sell our project. we need customers and others to buy into. we need to frame and the partnership is here to do that. we also need to appreciate that the assets and politics in washington in both houses where there's partisan, bipartisan cross party issues and we need to understand that and communicate our content. we do need the u.s. support and sometimes that this mean that we need, not just appreciate the politics are but we want them to appreciate our politics well as a partner moving forward. as i said, the project we have at hand in the region is not it's not a vision of somebody out of necessity of the fight against isis. so here it's important for us to cooperate, understand each other, and i would say let's
just work with each other, synchronize our approach to this. here at the train it has an important role in the region. you could be our partners to incorporate our -- people have that decision. with all the people we have had over the 12 years the trend of democracy moving forward in relation to elections, people tell me the election is a democratic. i give you that but a key indicator, prerequisite, moving in the right direction. at a very high cost. our people want to move as far away from that in the last elections incoming new prime minister is a sign for us want to move would from any dictator.
we need to move away from that. we are here to sell that project. support, intelligence sharing, ammunition, other things as well, support us. also with the post-human situation polarizations taken place in the region. we are fault line. we have all the isms. iraq is a fault line in the aspect. in relation to everything else. appreciate the fault line situation. stabilize, support us. it's important for our american partners to hear from the diminished himself and his delegation that this is what we are here for. economic support moving forward because of the current crisis we have. so there are a lot of issues. is this what you might call a 10
minute visit? no. it must be one amongst many for us to have that discussion. same in baghdad as well support for the. we shouldn't have our politics by exception. it should be the norm. there's a lot of work to do frank discussions about iran. that's an area. we will be open about that. we've never been secret about it. we have the secretive deal, no secret handshake or anything like that. the clear problems we have the clear present danger we have. we need to address the. we will have that discussion with them. we need to understand where do we fit in relation to the post nuclear discussion. what is the status of iraq in that aspect. would we fit in in the post-human situation? the people want on the right or the left of this polarization to we don't want to be on the other
side. we have important challenges for our own country. >> one here, and then i will try to get to decide next. >> thank you. i had three specific question. first community and about the mosul operation and the localities. what do you mean with the legislation of the localities? what level is expecting participation from the locality? because of the diverse in recent background briefing by the officials, and they said that in april or may it's in reality there will be an operation in mosul. there might be operation in mosul. is it a realistic forecast in terms of this operation and participation of the localities?
the second, the yemen think it was the decision of baghdad governed about an idea to form an army within the arabic countries which would be used sometimes for groups may be oriented by the government? and the third one in terms of relations with turkey. how would you characterize the core ration -- cooperation with turkey government and the baghdad government in terms of the struggle against terrorism that you mentioned? >> only the turks get three questions. >> i just returned from a fourth job in iraq. i was with mercy corps for your based in baghdad as to working iraq in 2005. i appreciate the three r's and the challenges which, starting
with reclaiming iraq. i would like you to try to be a little more explicit. this is overwhelming the middle east. isn't in fact that's what really going on? the second one is iran controls baghdad. the third one is iraq is actually broken forever now in history of poor countries and cannot be put back together. because you know the challenges of persuading our policymakers to support iraq given the americans desire to withdraw, i think you have to make a more compelling case that the result in iraq. so just tried to make your message stronger about how
you're going to address these key areas. >> i mean, i will start with the second question, or second three questions. the whole project is about hope. the suffering, of having car bombs in every district poor districts in shia towns and villages, suburbs i've iraq over the last 12 years has been about hope. that's what they have suffered, and representation at the elections has been about hope. people talk about the marginalization of sunnis and others, but in reality the look of the car bombings and everything else has all been in shia towns. i think people are reading things as they want to read not in the reality of the. we may not have been a good job of talking about that country
with numbers until one maybe but going back to the key point, we are developing a new country based with the ashes of dictatorship all over with the traces of cultural violence all over. that's a key point for people to realize that. i'm not blaming, i'm not getting the blame. i'm just getting a diagnosis of the problem, which means that the three countries and the government which is a key important attribute is still missing there. we need. we need more centralization. i can assure you i've seen ministers, say to me who say, ambassador, it's not for me to make that decision. they always want to take it upward. that's the culture they come from and they want they don't want to be blamed for any change. without having an adventure, risk taking, how do you want to develop your society.
these are social consequences. they take time. may take generations. but we have to get the right steps. so going to keep issues of sectarian and muslim or not, i know there is relation to boko haram in algeria tunisia recently and in paris these were not unique situation. this was an entity called itself the islamic were it's not islamic but tries to political power. it's all about power. there are ideological basis for some of them, i'm not denying that but i'm saying that as much as, i was in england for long-term, the northern ireland situation wasn't about catholic per se. it was about power. it wasn't that i.r.a. was ideologically catholic organization. it wasn't that. it was about power.
so here is it's an issue we need to distinguish. otherwise if you go to the sunni-shia situation unfortunately everybody else will miss out. because these organizations seek to destroy the norms of nation-states. they want to declare their own paradigm where nations where diversity is not allowed, put it that way. in relation to iran and relationship with baghdad, control baghdad or not, well, somebody asked me today, a journalist, and he looked about the iraq-iran war and others and they said to him, by the way, iraq still has major challenges with iran in relation to 1975 algeria agreement. we still haven't come we still don't agree to sign it now after 12 years. so that i think is a clear sign
that an issue if we have control of people talk about that, surely we couldn't sign that ages ago. so here it's an issue of nationalism. and we wouldn't appear we have a need with iran. we have a desire as a neighbor, as much as you have mexico and to problems with immigration, or candidate, i don't know hopefully not. >> we have that several wars with them. [laughter] >> the other issue is americans want to be canadians and canadians want to be americans. that's another issue. it's not an issue we don't want them to get involved. we do want them to get involved, but at the same time to we want them in control? no. we by the way, somebody last week our prime minister met with the leaders of congress and the summer, and he said to them, in my recent discussion with iranian officials they said well because of the problems
over there and the freedom in iraq, that we're posting a threat to the iranian national interest with freedom. maybe that's true or not doesn't matter. the point is we are distinct and we want to have our own way of life, and would respect the neighbor and we have common threats. and let's not forget they were the first provider and conditions to, for other a lot of condition of its. as to the point of mosul and operation and so on the level of change has to be with tribes and has to be that peshmerga get involved with the. and it has to be there is commuters in mosul play part in as well. we do want to do with that peshmerga because we need to think about what's the role moving forward. we don't want to resolve one problem, create of the problem for us. so that peshmerga being involved in mosul is a very important fact for the for commitment for
all to get rid of ice the isis is a problem for the whole society, not just for localities. so as far as yemen is concerned we have said we do in principle support having information of arab army to deal with issues, but yemen is not right project to implement that. the problems are more domestic. people are projecting it as a regional problem more domestic issues need to address. we need to give them leeway supporting. and certainly we think there needs to be more political discussion rather than two-state solution to. i don't think there's been give in a breathing space. in relation to turkey, if we compare relationship like a year ago, 18 months ago, i think we have a lot of good traffic flow between the two countries and leadership, the prime minister has been there, the prime minister of turkey is been to
iraq. it's a more predictable relationship. we appreciate the issues of the threat turkey claims in relation to its own terrorism problems domestic problems. but at the same time we say, please don't compare isis with any other organization. this is too big a problem, to regional of a problem region turkey has deployed a role in stabilizing in syria. for us, we'll always have our back door open. we need to close that. we need to get better discourse. [inaudible] the timing that was talked about was not an iraqi time when. we need help and support anybody talks about for them is for them to explain, not for us. >> in the back row. >> john from voice of america.
the issues hasn't been addressed so far. if this continue, what guarantee you have that kurdistan, the kurds will stay with iraq ask the popular mobilization forces has been seen as iraqis -- [inaudible] there is a lot of fear and hesitation that if daesh were crushed they will turn the guns towards the kurds. if there's any guarantee that it's not going to happen, thanks. >> thank you. and let me take one here. >> ambassador, thank you very much. my question is regarding the participation of the peshmerga in the region of mosul. the question is what baghdad is
cutting the budget from the courage employers and capturing all the sources from baghdad to the kurds, why peshmerga should artistic in the fight which is not its own fight? peshmerga right now from combining, they are fighting isis. thank you very much. >> i'm a sci-fi something it's not their fight. 1000 climate reporter, a threat to all these cds other minorities, christians another, destruction of property, culture, destabilizing the and the of the country all signs of somebodies fight. i would think with isis it's everybody's fight. can't just be somebodies fight your. [inaudible] >> i don't want to talk about the geography of the kurds.
i have my own views here but what i would say is a fight for humanity, for civil law for integrity of presence let alone nations of states to do. those are the key issues we have here. isis is a threat in ideological and physical since two not just the heritage, but to the future of our societies in the region. by the way let me be clear. when i talk about isis i don't talk about the brand of isis. i'm talking by the ideas of isis. i'm talking about the way they projected it or has been materialized where as let's forget, if i'm isis and want to change the name, i will talk about that new name the new mutation of isis. we had al-qaeda before.
people that it could be contained. they found it can't be contained. more aspects of different nations are now with evolution towards isis than any other day before. more european than of the. we find them in baghdad and elsewhere, iraq and elsewhere. so you we talk about a threat to the stability of the region. it's clear in the region they don't take upon themselves. they shouldn't call for initial support. if it's a ideological we need to address a. if it's a regional problem it is geopolitical and we need to address it. there is enough wealth in iraq in relation to natural resources, heritage, history and so on. so the bigger picture, the kurds and everybody else needs to be strategic in their thinking. is it just used that for now or move forward. this is we are saying, by the way, let me be clear as well. the kurds have always seek
independence. they have the right for the. they joined the project after 2003, after what 14 years or 13 years of independence after 1990. so they have joined the project, agreed to the constitution. we all need to work together to define that, understand the limitations. revise the constitution have that interdependency. if they want independence, then let's have that different chat about it. but let's not associate that with isis. isis is a bigger threat force and all. i think we need to mature up to that fact, otherwise let's not call for national support. i think the issue -- reese witherspoon some payments made. it's an ongoing discussion.
i see the iraq you politics as what you might call a key milestone. i see it as a gradual development. that's a gradual development is more confident measures, one step at a time. it's a marathon run. i don't see it as 100 charged with 400 yards or any sprint. this has to be a marathon. we need to have that discussion. we should be less conditional in our discussions. simply because i think the threat is bigger. not just the state of iraq i'm talking about the coexistence of society. the last thing i want to see it less strategic relationship between communities because of a threat or because of fear or because of intimidation of each other. we are neighbors. we will not move away. if you have a border or not. they will stay your neighbor. and then the voice of america first question regarding the krg
and so on, i think i try to answer that. it's a natural healthy development once the state wasn't able to protect its citizens. should we be in this position? no. we should have only the army and so on. but is this a necessity we have to do without? this. are we working in relation to how do we let the state have the control with national guard and other discussion until. it's a long project force. it's not a neat project but it's a necessary for us to work on. >> thank you, mr. ambassador. i'm going to use these last few minutes to see if you, abbas and ambassador have something to add. >> i'm going to yield to the ambassador because he is the guest of honor but i was going at a question i think that was remain unanswered related to me.
that's all right. on the media, that's the part of going to talk about. there seems to be a lot of, i mean again, we all appreciate the press and its role in we can't live without it. but -- >> i can live without it last night. >> -- [laughter] >> but beyond that i think there seems to be an alarming groupthink among the reports that are about iraq about what is going on. it seems like, you know the reporters depends on whether the report for a conservative, a liberal, an american, whatever, all of them speak in the same language talk about the same things, looking for the same troubles to report on. and we don't find anything they just look for anything. the first, one of the biggest
battles that happen in iraq major liberation of tikrit is a major event that is probably the most important event since mosul was taken and what does the first report from the france presse on it? they have looted some shaving cream and toothpaste. i am kidding you not. you go back to that report and that's what they were looking for. that's sad. there's also seems to be a tone of, people conflicting she is and iran and hezbollah, if there's a deep-rooted, or some really deep symptoms of anti-shiism among so many experts in the west, so many journalists. i'm speaking here for some who
wrote the book, one of the earliest, and it's a classic book on the arab shia, and no one can skip it reading the i'm looking at how the narrative has been for. and fortunately those who control the media from the government side, from the shia side seems to become that was silent, they did not want to escalate and that is backfiring. if you do not control the narrative or balance the narrative, the other side will be, the truth. too many minds. recover your data with people who don't have the nuances and the innocence of what goes on there. when you of all reports talk talking about the same thing, that is a problem. one is taken from the other, and we all know about that. the experience from 2003-2007 how many words are taken from
the five star -- how many towels were taken from the five star hotel in the green so just put in nice english and senate back in york or to washington. all of that, and when you go and investigate, none of the reporting was really going on. same thing here. it is easy to think and the journalistic box and to say the same thing because you don't have to be challenged and there are a few exceptions here and there, but that is just some of which are sort of it's just amazing, i wouldn't call it transparency, but amazing agreement, let's put it that way, quote-unquote, all of these people who love to disagree on everything but yet they agreed to the last point trust me talking about all of that. if you don't find anything, how about shaving cream and toothpaste. again, that's what i need to say
say. >> i think it's important for people to appreciate iraq and the sense of one parameter. to do the vows between justice and peace. it's a tribal society, and issues of justice or perceived justice is very important. but at the same time they want to move forward and bring stability and peace to their society. how do we get that balance? if you look at all all the experiences whether it's in northern ireland or south africa or elsewhere, belgium or elsewhere, a key issue we have here is how do we balance those two parameters justice and peace? it's a difficult problem. we are trying to get it right. but it's an ongoing project so keep that in mind. that's one of the boxes. the other issue which i will finish with is that the level of change required within iraqi society is different than in the
majority of other arab countries. in other countries more so with the arab spring people were disagreeing in egypt and elsewhere, what is the level of change. is it just for example, the president, ceo, system of government or the whole state or the whole nation-state or the type of government, royalty versus republican and so on. that type of discussion is the longing -- is no longer taken place in iraq. isis tried to define their own narrative but it's all to do with the nuances of the politics which means it's a good sign for us to work on. we need to resolve the governors. people still associate democracy with services. there are two different requirements. you can have the best democrats but it doesn't they are the best governors. that's an area for us to work with. the support come international support would be very helpful to please their in mind the uniqueness of iraq.
and my final point is please don't look at iraq through the prism of iran or any other. it needs to be looked at in its own unique way. it's not an easy formula to read. it's not a clear sense. it's a very blurry picture but that's, that uniqueness has i hope americans will appreciate it more than anything else because of the last 12 years project. however, we have no desire but to have it could relationship with all countries, including the united states. we may not say thank you enough, that's part of our culture unfortunately, but we do need that and we do need and want to have that relationship with the united states strategically. thank you. >> mr. ambassador, abbas kadhim, it's an odd -- it's in our culture to say a loud thank you to you for being so frank with us and for, you are a marathon and i guess we are only halfway
through this session. but our time has run out and it is time to thank you very much for a terrific hour and a half. [applause] [inaudible conversations] >> today in monticello, iowa where presidential candidate hillary clinton is making her first stop on a road trip through the state. the former sexiest it will be part of a roundtable discussion with educators and students at a local community college. we will have that live at 1:15 p.m. eastern here on c-span2. over on c-span3, we will be live on capitol hill for a meeting held by the senate foreign relations committee. its members are considering amendments to legislation that would give congress oversight of
agreements related to iran's nuclear program. that is at 2:15 p.m. eastern. >> the frame agreement on iran's nuclear program reached earlier this month was the topic of discussion hosted by the national council on u.s. air relations. speakers talked about the specific of the agreement and what does before iran's regional neighbors and his relationship with the u.s. the current deadline for a final deal between iran and negotiating countries is june. this is just over two hours. >> distinguished guests and speakers, good morning and welcome to another of this is a public affairs briefings on the national council on u.s.-arab relations on issues of vital importance to the united states and the nations in the middle east. thank you for coming this morning on such short notice. we put together on sunday
monday, and we have such a distinguished group of panelists who follow these matters and defense on a daily basis. this morning i am honored to be your moderator. my name is john pratt. i recently joined the national council on u.s.-arab relations after spending 35 years in the arabian gulf in the energy field. so i am well aware of the impact implications and the importance of the iran nuclear deal for the people of the region. before we begin i would like to thank c-span for covering this event alive today, and for covering our public affairs briefing last thursday on yemen held in this room at which the saudi ambassador to washington spoke at the conclusion of that session. c-span coverage last week of last week's briefing is a fable on our website www.mcu s. a r..org. a quick brief, quick word about
the national council on u.s.-arab relations. established 33 years ago as a nonprofit nongovernmental organization the guiding vision is one of education. it seeks to achieve americans about the arab countries, the middle east and the islamic world, and place relations between our friends, allison strategic partners across the region on as firm a foundation as possible and to continuously expand this relationship and mutual benefit. the council accomplishes this through a variety of programs. and that policymakers in congress students academics and our armed forces. it organizes an annual policymakers conference here in washington, conducts study abroad, internship and youth leadership development programs such as the ones which will be held this weekend in houston and in washington. beginning tomorrow over 400 young americans will represent 22 arab countries and model arab league programs to debate the
issues of the day with over 30,000 alumni this program serves to ensure that the next generation of americans are better prepared to plan, predict and conduct economic and political and commercial relations in a region so vital to the united states. today our panel will assess the iran nuclear deal. it's issues and implications. it would be incorrect to say that this is a done deal. this is a preliminary agreement framework with many so-called technical issues to be sorted out in the coming months by june 30 to be precise. and has been said repeatedly, the devil is basically in the detail. in the meantime the public debate will be vigorous and intense. this is a good thing or a bad thing? what do our regional partners and allies think? will this defines a legacy of a president in the home stretch of
his administration? to be sure the president has described this as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see if we can quote-unquote take the nuclear issue off the table and bring regional stability to the middle east. let us today and in the coming months see whether these noble of judges are possible or achievable. before we kick off just a few housekeeping details. each of the speakers will have 10 to 12 minutes for their remarks. in the interest of time i refer you to their bios in our announcement. this will allow for a full hour of questions and discussions. and on your chairs you will find a three by five card. is right your questions on these cards and pass them to our ushers will bring them forward and we will do our best to respond as fully as possible.
we will wrap up promptly at noon. to start i'm pleased to introduce our first speaker the founding president and ceo of the national council on u.s.-arab relations, dr. john duke anthony. dr. anthony is well known and well respected in the region. and in washington. he is the only american observer to the ministerial heads of state summit since 1981. after dr. anthony, ambassador hossein mousavian will speak. he will be followed by doctor thomas mattair, executive director of the middle east policy council. then kenneth katzman, specialist on middle east affairs with congressional research service will present his remarks. next we will hear from doctor imad harb, distinguished international affairs fellow the national council of arab religion and concluding, dr. paul sullivan, senior
international affairs fellow at the national council and professor of economics at the national defense university will wrap up the panel presentations. dr. anthony if you would kindly come to the podium and kick off our discussion on this deal. >> thank you, john. when we're putting together this seminar, we came up with 14 aspects, 14 factors, phenomena windows, lenses prisms through which one could look through what what just occurred with a preliminary agreement with the framework, the challenges it represents. but the opportunities it also represents. and we are only going to be able to address perhaps around eight of these 14 factors, but we will be as frank and candid as we can. much is unknown.
on the theological stage. there is inherently common implicitly, explicitly a degree of competition though expressed as i just did. her ran -- iran is perceived as being on a roll and a run beyond the nuclear agreement in terms of its leaders making reference to iran's unprecedented influence and full arab capitals. this itself would be of concern to a country such as saudi arabia, but also others in arab states. but on the figures bear, of the 1.5 billion muslims in the world 2 billion christians 1 billion does 2 billion being roman catholics some
200 million months on identify which the shia sect of islam. overall, talking about some 12% of the worlds muslims being shia. this is important to keep in mind when one reads the media and listens to people speak about the threat that her ran posters. 12%, taking on 88%. something is wrong with that picture. so this regime needs to be radically different. at the governmental level, the highest organization to which muslim countries belong is the organization of the islamic complex. it has 57 members. no more then four of those 57 would a predominantly shiite and
the orientation of the government. and so the numbers they are heavily imbalanced, not in favor of her ran. this team needs to be kept in days. with regard to iran, saudi arabia and bahrain, and these three are profoundly similar in their concerns regarding iran because they are neighbors of iran. they have issues. they have similar needs and concerns in similar interest in similar foreign policy object is. and yet there are emergencies between and amongst them. when people talk about threat analysis, it is usually where they are located. people in maine and vermont for example they're not really so concerned about jamaican and haitian people coming to their
sh in florida are not assessed with the same kinds of concerns that people who live in new england are concerned. and so, this is another way of looking at the needs and can earn an interest of foreign policy objectives of these countries. in non-is different from all the gcc countries in the sense that it has the best, but most amicable smooth, stable secure relationship with her ran -- iran. this has been the case almost since the beginning of the iranian revolution in 1979. part of that has to do with the body of water between them known as the hormuz strait. many people have the image that most of the shipping goes through iran's borders, coming into the golf and exiting the golf. this is not the case.
the overwhelming vast majority of the c-1 traffic goes through iran's waters. there were three lanes. one two-mile wide for ships coming into the gulf and another two-mile wide for ships going out of the gulf and a two-mile zone between the two that is a safety zone. and so the strategic and geographic challenge is far greater on me side than the iranian side. you can look at the map here to see what we are talking about. that little piece of oman at the top of the peninsula is separated from oman, like alaska is separated from the continental united states. and that they stressed the strategic aspect between oman and iranian relations. that is not going to be a
conflict between the two that started by oman. oman citizen space is less than 2 million whereas iran is 80 million. the numbers there again should drive your perspective,, your assessment of what the issues are the implications. but there is more geared iran is close to 30000 soldiers to oman in the period from roughly 1972 through 1974 to help oman put down acre rail of rival merck says oriented uprising in oman southernmost province. no other country, arab or non-arab did as much as iran did to help oman regain its security and stability. there are no territorial issues
between the two unlike territorial issues that exist between some of iran's other neighbors and iran. with regard to buy rain the situation there is also fruitful for your analysis. if people made frequent reference to some 60% of iraq's population being shia and yet ruled by a sunni government under the regime of saddam hussein, you have a situation even more imbalanced is the case by rain where you have the last remaining arab country with a sunni government ruling over a majority shia population. site the much renowned report that came out as a result of
bahrain's uprising in 2011 in which there was a declaratory statement there is no evidence of iranian involvement in this uprising. here is where perception comes in and perception is often mistaken for or even more powerful a force than reality. around 3000 bahrain have been trained in oman coming straight out of secondary school, financed by the shia merchants and bahrain. they go at age 17 16, 18. some say for a year. some stay for a year. ago largely to calm not to tehran as a theological seminary base of shia islam in iran. and then they return to bahrain. some of those are regarded by
the bahraini intelligence services as forming sleeper cells. in other words one day they may be called upon to return the favor of the education and the training and the leadership development that they acquired as a result of iran. so when the bahraini government speaks about iranian involvement there is this dimension that does not come up in the media, but should help one frame by rain concerns on top of periodic statements not from the most senior iranian officials, but iranian representatives of the government nonetheless that bahrain should revert to iranian control and influence. and this is of course disturbing to any bahraini tasks with security and ability issues.
saudi arabia likewise is concerned because of the significant shia population in its eastern province. with respect to this far less evidence than there is and has been in the case of bahrain's needs and concerns. saudi arabia and has become quite open that accusing iran of being behind in terms of the inspiration of the attacks on the alcohol bar towers in 1996. in which large numbers of people, americans and others, were killed. this is a brief overview to begin the discussion by showing that there is no unanimity of viewpoints in assessment and analysis of all of iran's neighbors. it differs from one to the next like snowflake fingerprints, no two are the same. we have the privilege and pleasure of listening to
ambassador mousavian hossein. [applause] >> good morning everyone. i ran both consider the deal agreed as a win-win deal. to my understanding, there is sky of reasons why iranian would conceive of the deal. number one is that the deal contains respect for iranian nuclear technology including terry lotter and whitewater. number two is ultimately the sanctions would be lifted, even
gradually. number three is that ultimately the iranian nuclear fire at the iaea i would be normalized. number four, again ultimately the iranian nuclear fire would we removed from chapter seven united states security in all resolutions would be terminated. number four is that iran asked jerry. would be able to have a normal, peaceful cooperation on peaceful, nuclear technology with the world powers. this is something i ran has been sanctioned from day one of the revolution.
they consider the deal a win for themselves. again, i would like to give you five reasons why they believe this is a win for the u.s. number one, iran expect accepted the maximum level of transparency measures within non-proliferation treaties. we have safeguard agreements. we have additional prodigals and we have a similar arrangement called 3.1. these are three arrangements for verification and transparency. we see non-proliferation and iaea. iran has accepted to be members of all three arrangements. number two is iran would agree, has agreed to allow little dimension issues, which would need to give verification
transparency inspection to the iaea beyond npt. practically, the world powers have the most intrusive, strong powerful verification system during the history of proliferation in the deal with iran. no other member state of npt has ever been committed like iran on verification and transparency measures. member for -- the number four is they were looking for a breakup to one year in case iran decided to go forward. they would be a breakout of one year. they have thought it. number five for confidence building measures the u.s. and the world powers needed time. due to 35 years of hostility,
there is still implementation of measures for 10 to 25 years, therefore they got enough time for a decade to a quarter of a century. to my understanding, this is a mutual winner, the joker boat. again i will try to give you five reasons why this is a win-win a mutual win for both of us. first through diplomatic solution, they were able to escape a devastating war in the middle east and perhaps this is one of the very rare occasions that big crisis in the middle east have been resolved or is going to be completely resolved through diplomacy. sector, they have been able to
sad a new mechanical verification for non-diversion organization. many nuclear expands to the npt is not enough. then he gave believed either an additional protocol, which is to not been a model of transparency is not enough. the sets of measures is practically a new mechanism of verification and transparency assuring non-diversion towards americanization for the first time far beyond npt. therefore, if they are wise enough to embed the agreements with iran on a broader scope, regionally and internationally, this would be vague big day for
proliferation globally number four is that perhaps this is the first other than the engagement policy of president obama and announced in 2009 has worked. in the u.s.a. have been trying for 35 years to include relations to absurd, all failed, and this is the first time the successes stand at the highest level of negotiation between iran and the u.s., which definitely would have implication on relations in iran and the west. number five it opens the door to a regional dialogue between iran and the world powers in the
u.s. tehran and washington decided not to go for brighter dialogue cooperation, negotiation on other issues unless they reached something. therefore this deal if it is finalized by july 1st can open the door for iran and the u.s. to cooperate, to have a regional dialogue, to cooperate on common interests, common threats. it is obvious no extremism, terrorism isis, and they are a threat to the region giving u.s. allies to iran to the international community. and there is a consensus that
threat number one to international peace and security today is isis and other version of isis. there is than direct cooperation. americans are leading the air strike against isis. there is a key element key force on the ground against isis. they have common interests were these instability in iraq peace and stability in afghanistan and many other issues like security. therefore, this is step one if they want, now they can open a dialogue to cooperate for commonalities and common threat. giving five reasons why iranian are happy, giving five reasons why the p5+1 is happy and five reasons why the international community in the region should be happy.
i believe everything is not over yet. they have a lot to do until july 1st. many, many technical issues have remain under his halt. therefore, we cannot say this is 100% done. sackett, but the nuclear date 35 years of hostility between iran and the u.s. is not going to be over. there is a huge mistrust between iran and the u.s. iran and the west and some u.s. allies in the region israelis are very much worried after the iranians and americans would go to bed. i want to assure them they are not going to bed soon. it takes time and this only could be the first step. thank you.
i now ask tom tran 11. >> thank you. 10 minutes isn't a lot of time. what i want to say is that there are positive developments in this nuclear framework agreement and enough progress to go forward with more negotiations over technical details and find out whether it can be emphasized. the gcc states, particularly uae, qatar, which i've been asked to talk about by making cautious statements about the willingness to see what the details are in to see whether
more progress can be made and whether sent them can be developed and implemented. i say it is cautious because there is a lot of skepticism in the state. and it is not just skepticism about the nuclear deal itself. the other concern which is perhaps even greater in some cases is that the united states in exchange for this agreement is going to acquiesce in the expansion of the iranian influence in the arab world. they are looking at iran's influence in iraq after the u.s. invasion and the whole system. iran's relationship with the assad regime and its output the assad regime. his influence over hezbollah
its influence over shia communities in bahrain and now in yemen. that concerned about what the united states is going to do is really great on their part. in fact they are concerned that the united states might even consent to iranian hegemony in the region. when we hear talk about isis or al qaeda or expectations that the united states to deal it out, these states are also asking the state pay equal amount of attention to iranian shia militias in iraq is syria and elsewhere. if we are not doing that it are concentrating only on city jihadists, it concerns them greatly. now, about the uae in particular , they have a special
reason for being skeptical about iran. i was specifically asked to address this issue, so i will. it concerns three islands in the approaches to the shipping lanes in the gulf to the last to the strait of partners. they lay him on the shipping lanes. if you control them you control the shipping lanes for a period of time. the shah of iran on those islands took been just before the united arab emirates became independent in early december 71. he explained he wanted them for strategic regions, concerned that radicals in the region might take them. john was talking about the revolution and the shaws prevention there. he was concerned that people might take for example. it is also very much the prime
ministers of iran were telling the british in the 1950s and 1960s era also interested in potential oil deposits offshore of those islands. so they did take them, although the uae has a strong historical and legal claim to the island and has ever since tried to press that claimed in the international arena. and it had the support of other gcc states and has had the support of the arab league and the support has continued after the revolution in 1979 and one could see during that period of time that those islands can be useful because during the tanker war, when iran was interfering with shipping and other states
in the golf it did use those islands than it did use its military assets on the island as well as the actual oil installation to interfere with shipping and the united states got involved and exported convoys and other shipping out of the gold. but it demonstrated the military utility of those islands. even when there was a in the early 1990s after the iran-iraq war was over the pcc states uae kuwait qatar were interested enough in concerned enough about iran's general military capabilities. it is convention in the military capabilities on its coast, on the island in the modernization of its military after the iran-iraq war -com,-com ma to start assigning security pacts with the united states to open
up their space for american airfields to face the centcom and that concerned iran greatly in iran has found that greatly during that period of time. iran has conducted naval exercises in the region. some of those naval exercises have involved attempts to block passage to the strait of foremost uae kuwait qatar, and others come to gcc u.s.-led naval exercises to be able to counter that certainly purchased in a great deal of american military equipment to modernize force it and be able to contain any potential iranian aggression. although, it is impossible to tell at iran's intentions are. they are looking that capability. it is anti-ship missiles and so
many other acquisitions that they have made over the past decade and they believe they need at least the ability to deter that and are getting it from the united states. however, as i said when i began, they are not just concerned about the nuclear agreement. they are concerned about the trustworthiness of the united states. there is a time i heard one of the officials say there was a time when the united states is a force to be reckoned with and nowadays a problem to be dealt with. which means that they are not sure that they can trust the united states. the united states does say we have your back when it comes to an external aggression. that they are looking at iraq. they advocate that hesitation in syria. they are looking at our repeated failure decade after decade to help the palestinians liberate themselves from the israelis and they are asking what kind of
political judgment the united states has. so this is all part of their concern about the nuclear agreement and why they want assurances from the united states that were going to do something about iran's presence in the arab world. they are actually concerned we might go back to the concept that we had when the british withdrew from the gulf in the 1970s, which was the 12 heller policy where we submitted both iran and saudi arabia and in an beloved and the support went to iran because of his more highly developed. that concept comes out. they are more concerned about that. they also concerned as i said before, even more concerned that we would tilt towards iran and recognize iran's power and population industry and
their own record as being concerned about the program. i would even say that in these capitals there are people who if agreement fails to satisfy them, if it feels they are in danger because of the potentially additional boldness that iran might think if it were allowed eventually to escape from these inspections and restrictions in 10 or 15 30 years. these are states that might think about other options. very reluctantly but they are countries that have talked about how we need to keep all options on the table if this agreement
doesn't work out. thank you. [applause] >> thank you very much, john, for inviting me. i will probably not talk for 10 minutes since my medicines wear off in eight minutes. so that's my limit. i am in a crs capacity today so i will be in crs style today which is objective and nonpartisan. if there's congressional staff in the room, i work for you so ask away. i would be glad to see you afterwards and clear of anything that's unclear. i will confine most of my comments today to the sanctions part of the deal. the issue.
it's clear from both the iranian and the u.s. fact sheet that basically all of the sanctions that have been imposed by the u.s. and the eu other than human rights related sanctions that have been imposed since the 2010, u.n. resolution 1929 of june 2010, i going to be relieved as a consequence of this agreement if it is finalized. that means iran being shut out of the international banking system would come to an end. iran's eating shutout of the swift electronic image system would end. sanctions on iran's sale of oil, sanctions on iran's shipping of oil, sanctions on insurance of iranian oil tankers, sanctions on buying iranian petrochemicals, sanctions on supplying iran with automotive gear, sanctions with supplying
on supplying iran with oil drilling exploration equipment all of these would presumably come to a conclusion if this deal is finalized, and when the iaea certifies that iran has complied. this is still a little bit unclear, has to be clarified a little bit more when the deal is finalized, but apparently the iaea is going to be the arbiter. they're going to certify that iran has reduced its stockpile to these 300 pounds or what of the agreement says, that iran has dismantled 15000 centrifuges and put them away. when these things are certified that's when the sanctions would be relieved, is what i am seeing, even though the to fact sheets differ a little bit. iran would buy these measures
gain access to approximately 130-150 billion in hard currency reserves that are in there is banks overseas. much of which is in south korea, some of which is in japan and other countries. these hard currency payments that were made for oil and that iran is unable to move back to the central bank. no government has in town this money. no government has taken title ii this money. it is iran's money. these are in bank accounts under iran's name, but because of the banking sanctions iran no bank is cooperating, will cooperate in helping iran move this money back to the central bank. that's what it's overseas and iran has not been able to get to it. so the idea that these are frozen assets or income and assets, that is incorrect. i see some oil people in the audience here.
as i said one of the big things in this is that iran would be able to freely export oil again. what does that mean? well, there are five countries currently that have active exemptions to avoid your sanctions to buy oil. they are bullet -- buying iranian oil, japan, south korea china, turkey and 80. these countries could conceivably come as soon as the sanctions are relieved they could increase their orders for iranian oil and iran could start supplying those five with more oil. the eu which is buying a quarter of iran's oil, they enacted a ban on purchases of iranian oil. so it's going to take longer for the eu to start buying iranian oil again because the eu would have to meet they have to get a consensus, it has to be a political decision to lift that ban. so that could be perhaps maybe
early 2016. the other five that he mentioned could conceivably, let's say there is a deal in june, let's say the iaea gives the go ahead september, october those five could conceivably start buying more iranian oil right away. the iranian economy, in my estimation, is likely to rebound fairly quickly. this 150 $130 billion that it mentioned that iran would get access to, that is virtually equal to iran's entire year of once entire budget year that they would instantly have hard currency. the valley of iran's riau would rise instantly, inflation would fall come employment would increase, the people whose shops are shuttered, the factors are shuttered would reopen. people would go back to work. some people go to work but they don't,come right now under the sanctions regime they're going
to work but they basically drink tea all day. then they get paid three months late and the boss might give them a quarter of what the road. this is what is going on now. basically the entire iranian economy is in a state of suspension, suspended animation. the entire economy is waiting for this deal to get done and the sanctions relief to occur. that's when everybody goes back to work and start getting paid again, start buying clothes again, buying electronics. this is when the economy fires up again. and just to close i would just talk a little, i am with crs obviously, the administration plan is, if this deal is finalized, there would be use of presidential waiver authority on the u.s. sanctions on foreign companies that have been so effective.
and then after some period of iranian compliance no one has specified how much, i personally think it's about a year but don't quote me necessarily on that, the administration plans to then ask congress to enact legislation that would change, modify, repeal or revoke the u.s. sanctions that have been put in place by statute. and it would be you know, a congressional decision at that point. they u.n. sanctions under the deal apparently will be relieved, and so if congress did not act odyssey the sanctions would stay in force and the could be obviously debate between the united states and u.s. allies as far as the sanctions relief because the u.s. sanctions on the foreign companies would still be enforced. it anyway, the plan would be to have a period of iranian
compliance and then ask the congress to enact sanctions relief under the agreement. and i think i will stop there. [applause] >> good morning, everybody. thanks for being here on such an april shower morning. well, i was asked to speak about basically the agreement as it applies or does not apply to what's going on in lebanon and syria were iran has a lot of influence. basically, the negotiations themselves as far as we know did not discuss anything outside of the negotiations on the nuclear program. so there were supposedly no no
connection specifically between iran's other issues in this foreign policy and the region or the world for that matter. but generally speaking everybody knew, everybody knows that the nuclear program was only a part of iranian foreign policy. but also the negotiations on the nuclear program but also it itself, no matter how much we do not that there is a connection, there is a connection to iranian influence in other places. and that specific negotiation had its impact on other things. basically two perspectives that iran actually used the issue of its role in lebanon and syria to try to get a better deal on the nuclear program. and the other one is that they
didn't. but the way it's seen in these two countries with iranian influence in both countries, oh through its support of the syrian regime and its support of hezbollah in lebanon everybody there thinks that there has to be some sort of an outcome that may reflect on local positions or political conditions in both countries. in other words if iran resolves this issue on the nuclear file like the ambassador already mentioned, will there be basically outcomes related to other foreign policy issues in which iran is involved? in lebanon the country is almost on the verge of collapse. the state is slowly almost imploding. there is a condition where it's
almost like ken said earlier, suspended animation in lebanon. there's no president no presidential elections have been held to elect a new president since last may. basically hezbollah and its allies on the christian side are the ones who are holding up the process. why that thing is going on is really beyond any rational interpretation. because if it is really the person of the president that's important, everybody is influencing, is thinking about what about the future of the country, what about the fate of that country? without the president there is no constitutional continuity, so to speak. antedate the executive authority is enhanced of the prime minister who, at any time can
be sent home by specifically hezbollah and its allies in the lebanese political system simply withdraw from that political process. so that is a very, very important consideration. there are obviously other issues, sectarian polarization in the country where unfortunately a lot of them some sunnis, not a lot because the division of leadership of the sunnis in the country in lebanon is still able to really maintain control over its community. but there are those people out there who are basically starting to voice the issue of okay well, we the sunnis are not getting what we're supposed to be getting. the shia are basically control the country. on the other hand, through hezbollah that is on the other hand, the shia and hezbollah are also worried about the very, very important development in lebanon over the last three or four years, the presence of
1.6 million series and refugees. the overwhelming majority of them are sunni. and, unfortunately, these refugees are not expected to return to syria anytime soon. because syria is destroyed and these people will have, if they were to be repatriated to syria, there will be some sort of an infrastructure that would receive them. so both people in lebanon are not happy with the situation that's going on in syria. so the imposition of the syrian civil war in the lebanese political system is really a very serious issue. what's interesting also is hezbollah, for instance, has not, while its criticize really hard criticize hard the operation decisive storm in yemen, they haven't necessarily
said much about the nuclear deal itself. it was a very, very strange that people in tehran were celebrating that this is a good deal, we want to get out of sanctions and all that. hezbollah didn't say very much. they probably are waiting to see how things shape up over the next couple of weeks or maybe over the next few months until the technical issues are resolved. but it's really very interesting hezbollah would not come out with any specific statement on the negotiations. and the syrian situation, the regime over the last probably two weeks to a month has really experienced a lot of setbacks, and on the ground, specific in the south and in the north. the regime has suffered military defeats. and so despite the fact that
hezbollah has really thrown its full weight behind the regime and deciding on many fronts in syria, despite the fact that there are shia militias are were being imported from abroad and even afghanistan and south asia, and despite the fact of the russian basically open spigot, military spigot so to speak to syria, things are not going very well for the syrian regime. so if you look at this very, very brief overview of office we can imagine okay what now? would be some sort of a change? and the situation in lebanon and syria. this is something that is quite important to answer because if iran were going back to the two perspectives on whether iran was using lebanon and syria as a bargaining chip in its nuclear program negotiations or whether it was not, it's really very
very important to try to answer this. the nuclear negotiations are done. iran does not necessarily need to use the nuclear issue to hold off political developments or other developments in lebanon or syria. will there be some sort of a rethinking of the syrian and lebanese situation? and this is something obviously everybody is speculating on. the arab governments are obviously now they're very busy with the war in yemen. definitely the gcc countries are very busy there but at the same time they are looking at the nuclear negotiation as how it might reflect on their interests in those two countries. if we talk about lebanon and syria, we also need to talk
about gcc situation and how the gcc really deals with this. there is a wild card here, and this is something that we really don't know how it's going to really shape up over the next three months until the end of june. and the wildcard is specifically, will anybody within the iranian political system, that is, you know when we look at iran we really are looking at the rational actors, but yet at the same time the nature of the iranian political system, its domestic politics are rather very fragmented. it's a very fractional kind of political system. obviously, the ayatollah khamenei has the ultimate say obviously and he definitely will try to rent everybody in whatever program or whatever decision that the iranian political leadership should have. but yet at the same time there
are those different factions within the system who may not be necessarily very very open and very accepting of the nuclear deal. in other words actually just only yesterday something positive came out of the leader of the revolutionary guard, where he said that our negotiators really work very very, very hard to get a very good deal. so in other words this is some sort of a way of saying okay you did okay. it was all right. this might reflect on how hezbollah for instance, looks at this issue but yet at the same time there are other people within the political system described the political system has been suspended equilibrium. all the different factions have their own interest at all of them are trying to pull their
own position. and so not very much really happens on the domestic scene. so are these different factions. will lead to something in the foreign policy arena? in other words will it be somebody who might think that it is possible to activate for instance activate the lebanese syrian front with israel? a couple of rocketeer, a couple of rockets there. something might happen like that and israel is not in any mood to let things go might respond to it if it does respond, then there goes the deal, the nuclear deal itself because hezbollah will have to respond and then things will really fall apart. i'll be happy to answer your questions if you like. and i give you dr. paul sullivan. thank you. [applause]
>> well, good morning. thanks for the invite, john duke. the aspen to talk about energy and have the potential relaxation or nullification of the sanctions whichever might be happening can affect energy systems, not just in iran but regionally and globally. to put this into perspective, iran is an energy giant. it has either, number one or number two in conventional natural gas reserves in the world. trade that off between russia and iran depend on what you're looking at. number four in conventional oil reserves in the world. i'm not talking about shale gas or shale oil. this is conventional. so when this is opened up if it's opened up and that is a big if and i will get to that, then this will definitely change energy markets globally.
because oil markets are global markets. it will not just affect crude oil but also refined products and petrochemicals. opening up iran, if it does open up, will also change natural gas markets. lng markets are developing as world markets rather than regional ones come and if iran hops into this they could change things considerably. one reason why iran has not been involved in challenges because they can't get at the right technology. a gigantic field they share with qatar, which gives me the impression that this opens up too much it could be that iran and qatar could come to some joint agreement, even in the use of an export facility to all you
need is a pipeline. another part of this whole issue is pipelines and other exporters in use going into central asia in the caspian. don't just look south. don't just look at asia. look at right nearby to the north. iran is on the caspian sea. you have major oil and gas producers in the caspian. those pipeline systems connecting iran, fields are mostly in the south west but if the profit is why you can build a pipeline, could change the entire network of pipeline politics going into europe russia, central asia and beyond. this is a huge deal. we shouldn't just be looking at paper dollars and paper oil. but the hedge funds will have a great time on this one. they are all guessing what's going to happen to the price of oil tomorrow. how many in this room get that question? it's like a parlor game. what's the price going to be tomorrow? will go down or up $3? we are talking trillions of
dollars of paper oil trading regulate, people winning and losing regularly trying to figure what is going to go on. another thing that really is not talked about too much in this whole situation is a pipeline going to pakistan and india which has been discussed with the been for some time. the sanctions were taken off. that can make this happen. although third is a bit of a palm and a place called balochistan which iran and pakistan shared, some border guards got killed recently. there's a great deal of instability, but i think money they talk in that situation as well. another part of the energy system that people are not discussing is electricity. iran, if this is completely opened up, could be part of a power pool of electricity production and consumption and sharing through regional transmission networks and so
forth going into central asia the caspian, possibly across to iraq and to many other places afghanistan so so forth. this could be a huge change but they are big hits to energy efficiency technology, some consider dual use could also enter a predicted to be more efficient with the use of energy. i think i can hear the investors salivating right now. could you imagine the tens of billions of investment that could float into these things that no one is even talking about? energy efficiency. what about renewables, geothermal, solar, wind? this is not happening. now to get the idea of the snapback of sanctions, which i think is an absolutely absurd term. you have tens of billions of dollars flowing into iran. oil going here. oil going there. mostly to asia, probably into the caspian to pipelines being
built and in some said they didn't follow the game, we're going to step back on sanctions. has anyone ever heard of lobbyists? money will talk in this. snapping that the sanctions is not as easy as that. taking off the sanctions is not as easy as that either. another part of the energy change in the region i would expect to happen if it goes forward is a nuclearization of the gulf and that is kind of a focus on electricity from nuclear power but also nuclearization in another way. and it could be that the arab gulf states will see this as a green light for them to move forward with this. because of the threat that they feel. all right. i should have said caveats in the beginning. all of my opinions are mine alone, do not represent those of the u.s. government, the national defense university or
any other organization i am a part of. okay, now if they get into trouble i have given the caveats. i'm not talking about them and what i'm proud to say will be clear i'm not talking for them. this is not a deal. i wish the newspapers and the tv and the internet would stop using that word, or at least put quotes around it. it's a framework for discussion of the deal. if you're about to buy a house or a small business and the person you're buying it from said, here's the framework for discussion, you wouldn't be asking when can i move in. this two and a half page document is less complicated than the merger of two small green grocers in cairo. it is too simple. it is too vague and it opens up for trouble. negotiating the details of any agreements with sufficient clarity can be far more complex than anyone could imagine or
think right now to the terms are not clear. what we are seeing right now is another version of groupthink. we saw groupthink before the iraq war. now we are seeing groupthink on this deal. everyone is hopping on board. read the documents. read the terms. for example, before the complex is to be converted into -- fordow complex, into an atomic research center. has anyone developed an atomic research center lately? how long will it take? how public it is that? how could you prove it's an atomic research center? i am seeing people get worried already. what is sufficient to make this deal again country and -- make this deal kicked in, and in what time period? ..