tv [untitled] October 19, 2012 11:30am-12:00pm EDT
there's a used to build and maintain churches and dwellings dating back hundreds of years invests whole what careers used to want riches by. complexity these planks are about to become part of something which exemplifies the combination of tradition and technology. but here at the valley on old viking boat makers what is fashioned into their souls new and old they range from small private boats to replicas used in the historical t.v. series. my boots are all special they're like children to me we have to design them and build them from scratch it's always sad when we have to part ways every time they sail away while we remain at the dark and pavel gets much of his timber from karelia same customers pine for its high quality wood. which brings us to the first six million cubic metres of wood is cut down in careers
forests every year that goes to make everything from farm houses to firewood and with growing is proximity to europe and the baltic it's big forests big business. and if. you can. follow in welcome to cross talk and peter lavelle syria ablaze as the world faces off supporting different sides fighting the syrian civil war rebel groups within the country struggle to unify can the syria we know today survive and is the future of this divided country now in the hands of outsiders.
to cross-talk the syrian inferno i'm joined by flynt leverett in washington he's a professor of international relations at penn state university in new york we have myers javedanfar he is a middle east analyst and lecturer at the interdisciplinary center in herts libya and in beirut we crossed and i am salam he is an associate professor and co-founder of the faculty of international affairs and diplomacy at notre dame university lebannon right gentlemen cross-like rules and i think that means you can jump in anytime you want and i very much encourage it there's talk of some kind of ceasefire going on among the stakeholders in the region around syria including in syria what are your feelings as a negotiated end to this conflict still possible because it looks like a lot of people are digging their heels in and a lot of people the rebels do not want to talk so where do you think we stand right now about a peaceful negotiation. well we're not in a good place but i think that in the go shaded political settlement remains the only way out of the mess. obviously baster brahimi in his role
as the u.n. arab league envoy is trying to get traction with the process use a cease fire for a jump start that. iran for its part has supported the plan the syrian government has expressed its willingness to cooperate and something of a shift in previous policy turkey is now saying it would support this initiative it really remains to be seen whether other players not just players in the syrian opposition but whether other regional players whether the gulf arab states this would be prepared to support this and use their influence with opposition groups will the united states support this this would require a significant change in direction for the united states for the gulf arab states to support this kind of initiative but it is really the only way out in beirut what do
you think about that i mean we've heard about you know negotiations before and they've always fallen apart so how realistic is it this time. first of all war in syria is a primarily western nato war on syria it is not the primarily a civil war it is a part of clear and tangentially a civil war which was used and exploited by west out of power by nato ally turkey to syria and to western policy to bring down is our side regime so what on syria is drive by is a west to control is through syria they are bored using turkey as a new islamist regime in turkey the new islamist regime in egypt in libya as well as in tunisia along with already established broyard regime is in the gulf and in monaco or in jordan this new alliance aims at bringing down the last hour. or
arab nationalist the arab world after saddam hussein was brought down and got jobs he was brought down so really it is a war over who controls the middle east if the nato and its allies when that our countries of the middle east will fall under western nato control for to become a distinct from and if syria is able to resist this lot there's a blood drive on it that will be a setback for a nato and that oblivion is allying with nato in new york i had you jump in we have very different points of view. i have to partially disagree with flint and. there are undoubtedly foreign forces at play here what he sees the continuation of the cold war in the middle east between iran and saudi arabia between sunni and shiite forces absolutely but i disagree with the point of view that this is just the foreign power struggle no it's not assad regime for many years as oppresses own
people has been distinct corruption in that country where many people around in the countryside have been marginalized they have been massive abuses of human rights. over the years and the syrian people have basically been ruled by the barrel by the gun in that country and what we see is a backlash of many years of oppressive policies by the assad regime so yes there are foreign players in this conflict but let's not forget the syrian people their life was not paradise in the form. of their conflagration up a very good point what about the people because it looks like the proxies are not thinking about the people they're thinking about the other proxies helping the other proxies. yeah you know i think that i think i'm probably somewhere between between myer and i am on this i think that there is a genuine popular base for the opposition in syria there are indigenous
factors that contribute to this conflict certainly but i also think that the syrian government the government retains the support of probably a narrow majority of the syrian population you know at least half of the syrian population i think still supports the government that's why i say i don't think there's really a military solution to this i've not that confident that the government can really win militarily particularly as long as the opposition is supported by outside players but i also don't think there's a way for the opposition to win and that's why i come back to my basic point that the only way out of this is a negotiated political process the problem so far has been that there are players the united states the gulf arabs the turks that have insisted up to this
point that any political process not just have preconditions but what you might call pre results that assad's departure had to be stipulated at the get go and for the united states there is further concern that they have never wanted to have iran involved in a regional process or a contact group on syria that's just not a serious diplomatic position if you really want a political settlement that's why you come back to the point that if we're going to have a political settlement it is going to requires some significant shifts in turkish and u.s. and gulf arab policies if you're in new york. jumping pleased to. see. peter peter flint is being a little bit too kind on the iranian government here in regards to their impact on the conflict that we see that's going on the iranian regime had recently in in september had told some talks with members of the opposition but they always insist
that the opposition has to accept that the bashar assad stays in power this is what these lamas said after they met with the legations from the reigning government when they travel to tehran. there have been talks but again the reigning government is also one of the causes of this calm conflict we see that they are supporting the assad regime financially we see that the iranian regime itself members of the quds force the deputy head was saying that they are assisting the assad regime and the iranian regime has always insisted that assad stays no i think this is something that has to be agreed between the syrian parties but one thing's for sure flynt assad cannot stay after the massive abuses of human rights in his own country after you know there's a recent human rights report that says twenty eight hour years in syria have disappeared what can what chance is there for us are to stay we all want to negotiate a settlement after this and i think this is for the syrian people to decide ok general we're told really running going to you. know i think in beirut here which i
believe going on let's say assad did leave what difference would it make there are still people there that are stuck in the middle of a sectarian war. first of four we will be do you doing our self and fooling i water. if we say a war on syria is a war on human rights and on democracy which countries in the middle east which are always things i wars on syria or support things i want on syria as a gun of oil companies the royalists companies that headed to thirty system in those countries as a ploy to get you on my rights as i. support think c.b.s. knows this is not the questions or question is a struggle for power is a struggle over the resources of the e.u. and i'm just not going to control that he's run through the last bastion which is that as this things us at that without going on which is the syrian regime the syrian regime is not probably the idea is that is implemented because human rights
on syria we are not claiming that but the syrian regime is on human rights and civil liberties and that i'd say of my own order these has about that of far back that i'd like or done most of the energy mix of that all your listeners dreams which are declaiming to support democracy in syria this is one example years i want to join you go ahead in new york to jump in please do so sorry that i agree with your point that i don't i don't think for a moment that the saudi royal family or the qataris are out of flame horde of human rights you know they are not they're not the leaders absolutely but i think it's inaccurate to say that all countries will support them on our undemocratic look at turkey turkey is a very democratic country look at egypt egypt has recently had a revolution and it's been my friend i sharif and west says let democracy in turkey let's take the democracy internally does my thing if it doesn't work either democracy was not good i did him a practical action erdogan won fair and square or someone else and i thought i was
on my not it isn't going to keep i've been a lot like that i felt in turkey what what is that what the where i was i do. good design thought these are human of ourselves that could what is the political right this is a slowdown started his fate is laid let me go to sleep before we go to the break i want to go to flint jensen before we go to the break democracy's kind of dropped off the agenda here when we look at syria hasn't it really i don't want to leave it on the agenda ok i agree good keep going and i don't think it's ever really seriously been on the agenda i think that you know i think that now you made a very very good point at the outset by saying particularly for the united states. the united states jumped on this situation much as it jumped on the situation in libya because after the loss of mubarak in egypt the obama administration. telling
the american angels where is it just going to knock your comparison when finished on a. plane if you say you're doing great rationale it's the same basic it's the same basic rationale the united states the obama administration was looking for places where it could appear to be on quote unquote the right side of history and take the arab awakening when they tried in here gentlemen i'm sorry we have to go to a break and after that short break we'll continue our discussion on syria stay with ours. and.
sometimes people don't remind you we're talking about the syrian civil war. my only go back to you in new york here there was a bit of a blow out there about what's the nature of democracy in this conflict here and you disagreed from so go ahead you can finish up your point i think i think this this conflict is also about democracy and the syrian people who are fighting for their right to vote in their own country and not to live under a one party system i also disagree with flint and the things that he says that this is the same as what america did in libya you can compare american involvement in libya which involved using fighter bomber jets and nato to what is happening in syria and i think america's actually taking the right choice by backing what is happening in syria and in terms of iran well the arab spring has been
a disaster from the beginning for iran we saw what happened of the tehran on the line moved the one in there and basically backed the syrian people against the iranian regime's point of view and this is just going to cause this current trend of the arab spring being against iranian interests is going to continue and i don't blame and i don't blame the rains for seeing it as something negative to go to be. what do you think i don't usually. go ahead and we're going to be rude. yeah i think the radiance definitely see this differently and i think they actually are right on this point analytically they think the arab spring is working very very strongly in their favor in that any government in this region which becomes at all more representative of its peoples attitudes beliefs preferences and so forth is automatically going to become less
interested in strategic cooperation with the united states much less with israel supporting that it's going to become more open to an iranian message of resistance because i think that assad in contrast to mubarak. actually has a popular base as i said i think he's got half of syrian society on his side you know what one should well that's not a little before i was interested in. this a little going a fair time let's go to beirut ron is in john. hurdle reforms time why not have one time on what i think. a route go ahead. let me pick up where a friend has mentioned. a few months ago a qatari funded institute and took a public opinion survey in syria and this sort of showed that fifty
four percent of the syrian people supported the assad regime that was in the early summers and i think now if there is an increasing and massive destruction of which is a striking syria and everywhere the popularity of that regime as we can see has risen from the fifty four percent the probably to sixty percent of people are afraid in syria for the future after this whole bombardment and tenderness which is striking all over the country this has then turns out that assad regime did and did not weakens assad regime so it is if you are to speak on a from the perspective of democracy and of popular support that assad regime doesn't have a popular support and this is a fact based on data and this that this sticks and as i've pointed out i am evil what i want i want for our friends my art is not mentioned in new york if the issue is democracy is that aisle in the middle east is one of the closest system in the
world left to our better typed it has cracked down on a on a movement in does which was elected democracy democratically and it was supported by the united states to destroy hamas and destroy it as a how can we talk about democracy we cannot have our cake and eat it too we cannot use double standard when we talk about democracy we have to are to speak with a house a steady hand as far as logic is concerned this is a shoe my good friend this is not about democracy it is about a strategic withdrawal over the resources of the middle east this is a fundamental fact that leadings a major power. in the world to get involvement in this mission from the united states to britain to france and most recently to russia russia i think has and has taken a very good position in standing up against this western new imperial attempt to control the middle east and specifically east syria and so involved and i
think the future will tell is that assad will get out on from this conflict on top . of the game irish and there's you know a lot said there's a lot to deny or go ahead in new york. well just just to first of to start with flints point regards to iran i think the running regime is not interested in democracy in syria the reason being is that between all the people in the middle east they run and people know syria best because since the revolution hundreds of thousands of iranians of travel to syria they go and visit the shiite shrines the as it is a now been in damascus many of the government subsidizes the holiday trips are for civil servants are there and people know syria very well and the iranian regime is scared because if the syrian regime falls that could set an example for the iranian people who could say look we also lived in a they're in a dictatorship and we also want to have freedom just like the syrian people i'm not
saying that what is happening in syria both sides are playing fair i think there are positions also concern about the opposition forces some of them are jihadi some of them with you know al qaeda related but the concept here remains that the people in syria are participating in this conflict i don't agree with no i am saying that the regime is popular name how can a regime be popular when he uses cluster bombs against its own people which popular regime we should call twenty five. neighborhood country and what do you got israel can just make one more point with regard to israel i disagreed with the israeli policy of not allowing hamas. when hamas won they were siding with p.l.o. and piro did not allow hamas to take over the government as they were supposed to after the elections i agree this was a mistaken policy for israel to back p.l.o. however after that i also blame hamas hamas is also responsible for not allowing democracy to flourish because they don't agree to new elections israel is not an
apartheid state it doesn't make mistakes let's also not forget the palestinians i think in that conflict both sides have got their own share of blame blame go ahead reply go ahead. unfortunately has been the state the who which has. made an infraction and violation of international law in some most number of cases since world war two i got was that it is i gave up on a scene i think as out as a west bank or. was it would have been to create the jewels of the matter or it is sold out of lebanon or it is not a part of that aboard so this is not the issue and well ok here it is you can waltz rules all right i want to i want to stay here year old i want to stay with syria flint if i go back to you it looks more and more like a secure area and more do we should we start saying sectarian war instead of civil war because when we add all the proxies in it's kerry and all the way down the line
. i think that the sectarian card has basically been used by the opposition element and by some of its. sternal supporters as a way of mobilizing support against this so supposedly infidel regime in damascus i think that i mean certainly the assad government draws a lot of its support from religious minorities in syria but that's not the only base of support that it has and i think that to the extent this conflict is becoming sectarian eyes that's being done by elements on on the opposition side and it's not a very positive positive trend i think in terms of the comparison of the way the u.s. is dealing with libya the way the u.s.
is dealing with with syria obviously the united states is not intervened directly militarily yet in syria but i think that the fact that in contrast to libya that russia and china have been willing to veto three security council resolutions which would have legitimacy that sort of intervention by the united states is a really important factor here it's certainly not a guarantee that the united states won't at some point basically act even without a security council resolution the united states unfortunately has done that has done that before but i think that has been an important constraint on the united states in this in this situation and it's a slightly whoever wins the election here is going to have a strategic choice to make ok it's going to be a route go ahead if it is making a valid point. it is
a position in which it has. made this conflict sectarian damascus five point five million people who live in damascus and around damascus the absolute majority of them are sunni and many of those sunni supporters that in jeem. port. city the city the city million people alipore as a province five point five million people many in aleppo also support of the regime and they are sunni sectarian character of this conflict has been made by the opposition by hijacking of people on their idea. back a ground. back around or sectarian back around and killing them for more as a result than being christian or being underweight in the in very very ugly and barbados but on the journey here almost out of time and i want to give my year the last time the last word on the program could we see syria partitioned as one of the
outcome. my i think though i think the fact that the syrian government is arming the kurdish rebels in northern syria on the border with turkey is creating a de facto state kurdish state in that part of the part of the country and if asada falls a thing we're going to see the kurdish people probably declare independence so i have some kind of a kurdish regional government like there is in northern iraq i think that's a very positive development to the world powers who drew up the maps of the six pictured agreement basically forgot the kurdish people and i think this is going to be a very positive development to see them at least off the many years of suffering and is communication having their own state ok gentlemen i wonder what the the neighborhood would say to that many thanks my guest today in new york washington and in beirut and thanks to our viewers for watching us here are to see you next time and remember russia.
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