tv Nuclear Deal Talks with Iran CSPAN December 29, 2013 5:40am-6:56am EST
people have to pay bribes for essential services which they can't afford to pay for. but it is also a question of in oursecurity, countries around the world. of course, that, too, is a question of development it is hard to have development when you have conflict. it is a question of peace, security, of development, and at the end it is a question of making this world a human one where humanity prevails. as opposed to the power and greed. >> mr. wilkinson. just congratulate jim and his colleagues on the formation of this new unit which strikes ands being a practical important step forward. i wish them not only the very best of luck, but would hope
that they tackle some of the iny difficult cases also publicity and the annual meetings speech. not only talk about the successes, but just how tough it is inside many of the countries, a statement of all the successes is useful, but i do think even more useful is a statement of how prevalent the equity corruption and in still is. i would hope that this department can report in two phases, one in what it has done, but also how much is to be done. ima. >>ster, post seem
>> if the world bank's goal is to reduce poverty, they have to make an equal amount of investment in working towards the reduction of corruption. i think this is especially important because corruption and countries affecting that are the younger countries, those that have the potential to actually be the drivers. it is to our interest, because after all, economies are about , most ofd the young the young of the world are in countries that are dealing with these challenges. it is a problem, it is a cancer. >> speak up against the option -- my aim was to make this most fascinating our of conversation of your week. i will find out if it was when
you applaud our panel. hold it one moment. your panel, ladies and gentlemen. [applause] >> thank you for coming, have a wonderful morning. thank you. journalext "washington the likelihood of places like afghanistan, syria and iran becoming military hotspots in 2014. after that, presidential historian richard norton smith talks about president obama second term in office and how other second term presidents fared in the past. we also look for your comments by phone, e-mail and twitter.
journal" live beginning at 7 a.m. eastern here on c-span. not decide early on, he waited until the last did . he probably met with .ennsylvania governor curtin that is when he finally realized he had to decide and he did decide to go. he then probably on the night of november 17 just as he said to his old friend james speed, the brother of his dear friend from's bring field, lincoln told james speed that he found time to write about half of the speech. he took what he had from the gettysburg and wrote the rest there. i think there is very good evidence that lincoln was not invited that early and that he in fact wrote the speech late date that does not mean it was not important to him. he invited a lot of people to go. he took care and attention over his words once he knew he was going, but just because he
didn't write it for two or three weeks as mean it was not important. >> historians talk about events and circumstances surrounding abraham lincoln's gettysburg address and the president's plan and approach for the speech. today, at 11 a.m. eastern, part of american history tv this weekend on c-span three. normsnow have secular instead of the illogical norms ort govern our acceptance rejection of the ways in which a god or gods or goddesses can speak to what impact it has. you had david corrects saying he helping other members of his community understand the bible, particularly the book of exceptions better and that they are living in the end times in a way that most americans don't accept. that doesn't seem to be a
problem, but when it leads to other elements, then the trigger of those law enforcement concerns as well as the popular press is concerned, then suddenly this idea of somebody listening to god and having his followers do things that seem to norms,rant to natural that is different and that needs to be policed and controlled. religionan university professor argues that religious persecution in america has been prevalent since the mid-1800s. he is committed by the very government that is supposed to protect us from persecution. tonight at nine on afterwards, part of book tv this weekend on c-span two. next, a discussion about ongoing negotiations over iran's nuclear program and a possible long-term deal with the u.s. and international community. former state department officials from the clinton and obama administrations join a former iranian negotiator for
this discussion hosted by the asia society. it is a little more than an hour. [applause] >> you laid out exactly the questions. if you have questions, i know they are bringing up the ipad. ambassador, let me begin. the history could be a history of non-relations. no direct talks. even this interim agreement appears to be a hiccup. secretary kerry has talked to the foreign minister. is this a real agreement? is this a breakthrough moment? >> i think that it would take a
paroxysm of inventive imagination to believe that it is not a breakthrough in the context of years of almost no 30 contact. on the other hand, the other element of a breakthrough is where does that door lead? is it leading somewhere? can we see this particular opening take us through to a stage where we recognize that the agreements -- and i put the plural there because we are waiting to see about follow on arrangements -- that the agreements have produced something that we can see, observe, and understand that it has created a status different from where we started. breakthrough, absolutely, but is the whole question going to be ratified? i think we are focused on the future and that is what we have
to look at. i have great hopes that it will, but the problem about the future is that it is all prediction. the point here is that i think the opening of the door is that -- europe's us every responsible reason to make sure on both sides that we conduct ourselves and run the activities so that at the end of the day, the door is leading a somewhere. -- is leading us somewhere. from that particular point, we can pick up and do other things. there is a huge agenda here. it is not just -- even though both sides have given priority to the nuclear agenda. it is probably hard to believe that given the number of contacts, they have not talked about afghanistan, at least
about syria. >> do you agree with ambassador pickering that this is a breakthrough moment? i wonder if you could comment on the domestic pressures facing the foreign minister and president rouhani. i was struck by the contradictory reactions. it seems like the iranians went back home and were greeted by protests. and then the cheers and the overwhelming approbation that welcomed them after the agreements were signed. >> for the first time, we have had direct talks between two foreign ministers. for the first time, we had a phone conversation between two presidents. two presidents have nominated the foreign ministers.
five, six, seven rounds of direct negotiations before the deal and the talks are continuing. we have never had -- this is clear. the domestic situation, we have the same domestic situation that you have in the u.s. people are supporting the deal. some politicians are opposing the deal. some politicians are silent. almost everything is the same at the same level. there is a big difference.
there is foreign intervention in the u.s. decision. arabs, israelis, are making official intervention in the u.s. decision. there are third parties into fearing with the u.s. decision -- third parties interfering with the u.s. decision. iran is not -- this is the big difference between our domestic situations. i also agree with tom that this is the beginning. this is a breakthrough, but this is the beginning. the tough job is left for a comprehensive package to be agreed. >> are you confident the interim agreement is going to be executed?
>> iran already has agreed and signed with the iaea the framework of cooperation. this is one of the most difficult parts of the interim agreement. transparency is the number one issue. iranians and the iaea have had many meetings. they have agreed on the facts and it is ready to go. iranians have given access before the implementation of the interim agreement. the iranians gave access to the iaea to some very sensitive nuclear facilities.
both parties are serious. >> you are working on laying the groundwork for this agreement. it does seem to be exquisitely balanced. you worked hard on getting the balance right. do you agree on how each side is under parallel pressure? do you think one side or the other may be facing greater domestic opposition? >> there is great symmetry, great balance. this was a major accomplishment. in terms of domestic critics. this was a major accomplishment.
in a relatively short period of time. it is only one step in what is going to be a long journey. the obstacles ahead are huge. the mistrust on both sides is tremendous. the issues they have to tackle, the interim agreement, the issues are small in comparison to the big issues of what has to be resolved in a final deal. and then you have the domestic criticism. we have the u.s. congress, very skeptical, the american public is skeptical. it has been 34 years of estrangement. a lot of ill will, mistrust. the american public does not trust any deal with iran. i am confident that this interim deal, besides will comply with it. on the iranian side, there is tremendous skepticism.
this could open the door, if there is a final agreement, the obstacles are huge. if it can be achieved, it can open the door to cooperation in some other areas. but it will be hard. you look around the world and you think of areas in the world where there can be cooperation. afghanistan, perhaps. in terms of the conditions for stopping the civil war in syria, there are differences. it is a very impressive initial step, but it is only an initial step.
>> you have a situation, 50-50, according to the president. the clock is ticking. the congress has been clear that six months means six months. what would you do right now to start to beat the clock? >> i did not think the clock is running. the first thing i would do is get the clock running. the second thing i would do is i would start yesterday in beginning to scope out the effort that has to be made, the strategy, the focus, the ideas that have to go into the comprehensive agreement.
i would try to pick up immediately, perhaps beginning in bilateral contacts, despite the fact that the bilateral contacts have tended to produce two negotiations. it is not easy to go from a bilateral deal to a multilateral deal seamlessly. it has been very clear that from on the other handit has been very clear that from, the moment the u.s. asked for bilaterals and the moment in which iran accepted it, the key was in the locked, ready to be turned to open the door. i think that is very important. you have issues on what basis should we make an agreement with
respect to continuing enrichment in iran, which is inevitable. should it be related to a program? i certainly think it should be. you cannot just pull figures out of the air. that has to be tuned with how to some extent does that help prevent rapid breakout. where does that fit together? there are some critical issues. what to do about the future of the iraq reactor? should it be converted to low enrichment? should we find a way to produce the result? which iran is expecting from the iraq those are all very reactor with less danger. important questions. i am sure bob could give you 100 others. we need to do that. i also think we need to work on the congress. my own view is that we escaped by a hair's breadth a catastrophe.
onerous was brought up short in what i thought was a mindless effort, clearly aimed to destroy this agreement in my view. despite the fact that it was explained in the basis of their uncertainties and mistrust of iran. >> recognizing the right to enrichment, the opponents of the agreement were saying it is impossible. they say iraq would have to be closed. is there a creative way around that? >> of course there is. the creative way is to restrict enrichment to levels which are both retarding of the rapid breakout and retate to peaceful nuclear program. with all respect, iran has no current you for low enrichment uranium at least as far as i
can see. and they will have to figure out what it is they want to do. >> but then again -- >> but let me also say i think we're making progress with the congress. i think the congress -- you have to understand that this no enrichment thing, how are you going to take enrichment knowledge out of the heads of the iranian scientists? and that's where it counts. if you know how to enrich and operate cascades effectively then you have conquered that problem and zero enrichment may give you some time but in the end it doesn't undo the notion that you already have been able to develop as a scientific and technical reality. >> let me respond to your point. but also adding to that what is the feeling inside right now? is he under time pressure as well? and how much time pressure is under which president obama has cited to really deliver on
sanctions relief and how much time will he get from those orces inside iran? >> with all respect, with the enrichment of uranium, i believe that americans do not need 10,000 nuclear bombs. but the iranians, whether they ave enrichment or not. time pressure, george, this is extremely important for the future of iran and u.s. relations to understand the threats and sanctions that have brought iran to the negotiating table. i am talking about the
future. if americans come to the conclusion because of sanctions and threats and pressures, they need iran to come to the negotiating table. >> that is an article of faith for most americans in congress. >> sanctions definitely harmed iran. no one can dispute this, even omestically. but looked to the package or postal that we gave in 005. they were members of a nuclear negotiation team. it was a time to did not refer to the united nations security council. multilateral sanctions before un resolutions, and look at
november 24 or 25. you would see that the elements are exactly the same. the major elements of the proposal is exactly the same as he elements. they proposed not to have reprocessing. they propose to enrich below five percent. they proposed to limited the stockpile. that would give the state big interest for leverage. now look at the result.
what is the main objective of the sanctions jacko before sanctions have 13,000, after sanctions, 13,000. iran was really -- reaching elow five percent. iranians have been harmed, but on the issue that they really increased the level and capacity of the nuclear order. to prove to americans -- i am sure you have been at tables where you have heard a narrative like that. what would you say? cracks come on, hussein.
everybody knows why iran has ade these concessions. the sanctions became very effective. it's true they were resisted and the program continued, but after the oil sanctions were put in place and revenues dropped, inflation went up to 40%. the sanctions became hard to tolerate. the leadership before the june elections were in a state of denial. they thought we could weather the sanctions and get around hem. >> what is the difference between the proposal in 2005? >> i don't want to go there. after the june election, a group of leaders came to power and looked at the situation and
decided this is intolerable. our country is going down the drain and we have to do omething about this. a majority of the iranian public said, enough. we need to rejoin the world and need to get rid of these sanctions. there is no question in my mind that the sanctions are what brought iraq to the table now. looking forward, i think sanctions can be counterproductive. if subsections are good, it is a mistake to think that more would be better. they have plenty of incentive nd the easing is modest. >> how do you make that case to ccain and schumer?
>> the u.s. objective is to get the best possible deal that keeps iran away from a nuclear weapon and doesn't take us into war. the alternatives to me seemed to be very stark. the issue here is, continuing to keep sanctions on iran when they can be useful getting the nuclear weapon by taking a nuclear deal. it means you have created a double duty operation. you can put them back on again and we have held the trigger very tightly in terms of the resent situation by taking off what are the symptoms of sanctions as opposed to the anctions themselves.
but to get a cooperative agreement, we will have to go further. the alternative, in my view, it is kind of lunatic. holding out for a deal that doesn't accomplish a great deal more on the basis that it has to be paid for in all of that extra coin to do it when it doesn't demonstrably change the situation is one of those risk-benefit analyses that logical people can come out in a very clear way that the kind of deal we are moving toward is a good deal and a helpful eal. >> if we don't keep the pressure on, the entire section? >> and has not been proven, in my view, to be effective.
i don't think that is right. >> what does the president have to show to the supreme leader nd others in the power structure of iran and the iranian people to be able to complete a deal? >> of course, a better economic situation would be the most mport and issue. it has a relation with two issues. one is domestic management and ne is sanctions. i think they are in much better
situations under domestic management. they are much more functional. and the process of sanction lifting also continues a lot. i sincerely believe the major issue makes it feel possible, a change in u.s. position. you are the first in the state department to recognize that omehow accepted. the reason these efforts faded is because the u.s. deadline was no enrichment. we cannot do anything.
the red line was no nuclear bomb. these made the deal possible. if the u.s. was supposed to continue sanctions for another century, it would never be able to get it. >> i remember it well because of the interviewing the secretary the morning after the deal. they say the deal clearly includes the right to enrichment and he was adamantly denying it to my direct question. it might get you through an interim agreement, but how do you square that? >> as far as i understand, the u.s. has not officially publicly recognized rights of
enrichment for any country. including germany, argentina, brazil, japan. but practically, has tolerated. when kerry or obama are talking about we're not going to recognize the rights of enrichment, they have not recognized the rights of enrichment for japan, brazil, argentina, germany, but they have accepted. this is what they're going to do about iraq. >> it is clear that the present eal doesn't get zero enrichment. there is inherent anguage that zero enrichment may not be forcibly on the
table considering the follow-on deal. but it doesn't say that it necessarily can't be considered. there is a kind of politics to this rather than legality. i don't think anybody can believe that enrichment was ruled out, nor was it specifically provided for. >> there is no recognition of the legal right. we don't believe iran is going to accept the deal without enrichment. there has not yet been accepted by the u.s.. it is conditional upon agreement, limitations on stockpiles and acceptance of monetary measures that would
make the enrichment program acceptable in terms of the moving concerns of the potential misuse of the program for nuclear weapons. before i accept hussein's gratitude for recognizing early, at the moment, they have very different conceptions of what an acceptable enrichment row graham would be. they talked about a mutually defined enrichment program ased on practical needs. what are iran's practical needs for enrichment. it has a research reactor supplied by the united tates.
it already has enough fuel for decades. the russians are supplying the enriched uranium fuel for it. they have plans for for small research reactors and that is fine. iran can produce enriched uranium fuel for that. so at the moment, the practical needs are relatively small. my guess is the u.s. and its partners are going to suggest a very constrained and small enrichment program. it won't ook at current practical needs, it will look at plants that i think are wildly
unrealistic. the u.s. will not agree to enrichment program sized to fuel a very large fantasy program. >> po that israel is looking at agreement. what about russia and china? what do you see the role they are playing? are they hostile to a real deal? >> i think they are in the same ange for a deal. there might be some variations but i don't think it would be
much more since they have been round. there are clear differences on the table here with russia and china. they have put forward ideas for it deal never two different from where we have come out. i think that the chinese are happy to follow in the wake of the russians on this one. not to get out ahead, in front, or behind on the kind of question that has been very comfortable for them. we had the extraordinary and maybe excruciating time of french resistance. which i think had its own peculiar dynamic that we are now over. we had deep concern in the gulf
states of israel. i was ambassador in israel and the prime minister of israel through an absolutely magnificent set of foresight and criticized the deal that he did not know the terms and conditions of and it turned out not to be the deal that was the deal. it gives you an indication that it was at least some political imperative at work here. it was interesting to me that the week after the deal, the israeli approach shifted. it was come to the united states to try to find a omprehensive deal. and that produced, on the hill, a set of reactions of tightening sanctions.
some left to find the parameters of the deal. that isn't the deal. the two sides can agree to additional. i think it would be hard sledding right now and that is why when you asked me the first question i said we really have to put a maximum effort into getting a comprehensive deal or something very close to it. >> do you think the maximum effort is being made? >> yes, except for imposing new sanctions. otherwise, the effort has been really positive. but the u.s. has played and
would play a very critical role. it depends to what type of deal the u.s. would look for a comprehensive package. the need to satisfy netanyahu or a deal to satisfy onproliferation. i believe he would never be satisfied because everybody would ask about the peace process. he would be afraid to continue the iranian nuclear issue. if the u.s. is going to reach a comprehensive deal with iran to satisfy nonproliferation, we have three major arrangements.
one is additional protocol, and another is code 3.1. this is the maximum international community that they can expect from iran based on mpg. gary told the public that the .s. would go to negotiate with iraq, 3000 or 4000 centrifuges. these limitations are all eyond. if you nonproliferation treaty is the base, you have to stick
to npt. if it's for 3.1, there is nothing to be done internationally. but if you're going to put limits, this is another issue. that you cannot find any type of limits. they can have one enrichment site or 10 enrichment sites. no one can impose on the members any limits. >> it is certainly not true. it has one magnificent qualifier. peaceful.
things that are not peaceful are not permitted even though we have had long disputes and arguments about this. the last screw turn on a bomb, it is peaceful until then. i don't accept that view. already in the joint agreement, iran has agreed to put inspection of certain items, centrifuges, and other installations up for inspection hat are not readily changeable to the additional safeguards. i think it is an example for the whole world that you're doing it. i would like to see that improved. we have a particularly difficult problem. sensitive activities that can be converted and moved into a weapons area.
it is up to the international community not to be static as the fundamental designer of everything, but to move ahead and try to find ways to improve capacity. a suggestion was made by a number of us that we should internationalize these facilities and there would be openness in what the facility was doing. and i think, iran has come back with that suggestion quietly nd in a number of areas. if i had my way, i would've started with the u.s. to take part in the enrichment facilities and put them under international ownership. the others that are nuclear
powers, it would be purely a civilian effort. but it would be no guarantee. > he mentioned before that there were recently imposed sanctions and that this was a problem. they said the u.s. will not impose new sanctions. what that means is that there ay be particular enforcement actions and this was explained to the iranian side in great etail. expect more entities, but there will be no new sanctions. it was explained and understood. i happen to know that at lunch time, the u.s. side gave a
heads up and advance notice that these designations were coming. before the world knew, as a courtesy, we let them know. it is recognized. even if these actions were consistent with the interim agreement, they were inappropriate and unconstructive. everyone knew that they were not inconsistent. hey were expected. >> given the history and given mistrust and the actions that we considered iran's file asians, they have to do more than just satisfy minimum equirements. officials have said that our job is to resolve the concern of the international community.
we are prepared to go to great lakes to do that. it will need ertainly, temporarily. what should our objectives be? constraining what is called breakout capability. if and when a country decides to get nuclear weapons, it abandons constraints and uses existing facilities very quickly to produce enough bomb grade uranium for a single weapon. and to do that quickly enough for the international community can intervene. but you have to lengthen that breakout timeline, the time it would take to enrich enough ranium for a bomb.
in our view, it is possible to constrain the size of the program while at the same time meeting iran's legitimate needs for enriched uranium to fuel its nuclear energy program which, for the time being, is very modest. it is possible to square the circle, but it will involve bridging a gap that is very ide. the problem with the interim agreement is that it attracts ire and criticism. it is natural for leaders to anted to get a little bit. >> he said you can't have a eal that satisfies prime
inister netanyahu. if that is true, can there be a deal? >> i agree that it should not be the standard. i don't know why he has taken a very maximalist position send all enriched uranium out of the country, shut down this reactor, i don't think that is achievable. and it is not necessary. we can have a good agreement without meeting those criteria. what is the harm in going for t? the worst they can do is say no. there is worse than they're saying no. if we put a position on the
table that the world considers unfair, we lose a vital element in negotiations, this very trong sanctions coalition. when i went around the world speaking to governments, the best argument i had is that we need your help strengthening the sanctions in order to increase the chance of successful negotiations. only through pressure are we oing to get a good deal. we are responsible for the impasse. >> that is how it unravels. >> they agree on no nuclear weapons in iran. s bob said before.
that hussein is ready to say that the iranians will agree. it gives us as much of that time as we need and as much transparency so we know what we are losing that. as an arrangement out there on the table, do we want to give that away in hopes of getting something that is slightly better, but not worth the price f admission? it might well lead us to a military conflict.
would be acceptable because it is iranians that proposed from 2003 two 2005 confidence building measures like enrichment below five percent. these confidence building measures in order to remove it from national concern. the reason i am really surprised about it is the amount of impact is because he is challenging officially the u.s. president. t is shocking. and second, when you hear a congressman say that i trust more israel he is, can you
imagine a u.s. congressman tells the foreign secretary i trust israelis more than you? this is really something that we cannot imagine. >> can you tell us more about the secret u.s. iran nuclear agreement? >> tom was behind. the person that masterminded these. >> i can shed more light on it than anyone else here it but i am restricted in what i really can say. there have been reports of a bilateral channel going back
before the election on that. and it is clear that president obama has personally said i would like to have bilateral u.s. iranian talks. we need to restore dialogue. the administration has been for that for quite some time. at the un general assembly, you had a foreign ministers meeting they met for 30 minutes fterwards. all of that was very good. the bilateral dialogue continued after that. it has been revealed since then that there had been a lot of ide discussions.
and in that crucial second geneva session, what happened was the document that was prepared and handed, she called t an american document, but it was largely under rainy and and american document. it was not fully resolved, but it was largely the work of bilateral discussions working very efficiently together. my own view is that the u.s. might have done a better job at consulting its partners, but we were honoring the request that we keep this confidential. it is very difficult to negotiate in public.
even if we said this is strictly secret, it could get out in the newspaper and make things very difficult. we kept it quiet and it caused some esentment. the public reaction was i think a function of his feeling a bit eft out. it was resolved within 24 hours and was a consensus that we moved forward with. this could be a complicated factor going forward because i think everyone knows that if there is going to be a deal, there has to be a meeting of the minds. those are the critical protagonists. i don't want to diminish the work of that you, but the u.s.
and iran will be critical. even though they will be the central talks, i think they will have to be supplemented with bilateral discussions. you are professionals of a hard grinding work. president richard nixon's historic visit was a pivotal moment in u.s. foreign policy. is president obama on the verge of something similar? is there any world where it would be more helpful to try something dramatic like hat?
>> we have yet to see what we -- beyond what we already ave. they are not to be isparaged. they have to be look at not like the visit to china but the visit to china was prepared over the course of a year. and to be able to get that thing moving for the reason it as just explained. both sides had a feeling that they could prosper if it took place outside of the glare of the lights and outside the influence of other players. other players were brought in t various times. but my feeling was it was a necessary risk to take.
they were so significantly larger than the momentary iccups that we had to go through despite the fact that they got a lot of publicity. i think the challenge is how bilateral context can be syncopated a little bit better. the notion of the fact doesn't have to be hidden any more. reports as to exactly who said hat. i think there will have to be some thought given to it. i thought that they did exactly the right things and managed it as best they could.
>> would've more dramatic move like that be helpful? >> of course. we should recognize that they would have never reached a deal otherwise. and that progress with direct talks, again, it would ail. however, we should not limit talks to nuclear. we need to enter a broader ialogue. the u.s. is a big player in ran is a big player. we have a crisis in iraq, the .s. is a big player. and it is really interesting to
remember that we are supporting the same government. and the u.s. allies are proposing this to the government. he major threat is terrorism spilling over from syria. they can play a big role controlling extremes and terrorism. it was really great that the ountries cooperated. this background can be used for urrent problems. i know the nuclear talks would be followed. we would need u.s. dialogue.
not just on nuclear, but broader issues. it does not mean it can only be resolved -- we need to engage saudi arabia. we need to engage ussia and egypt. the presence of iran and the u.s., none of these issues are off? >> to endorse one of donald rumsfeld's rules, if a problem is too large to solve? >> i don't think that is right right now. there are those that believe this is not just nuclear. there are great hopes for that in the long run.
there is an interesting symmetry in the short term. there are domestic political reasons on both sides. he name of the game is getting the sanctions lifted and getting the economy back on track. you don't do that by complicating the problem and delaying a deal. there are still those the call the united states the great satan. there are still concerns among u.s. partners in the egion.
hey think the u.s. is going to cut a deal that says, in exchange for iran's nuclear concessions, the united states is going to give iran a free hand in the middle east. that is not going to happen, but it is a concern. the iranian leadership wants to confine this to nuclear. if there is compliance and people are comfortable with it, it can open doors to do more things. starting off with areas of obvious common interest,
broadening from there. >> i think that we have both committed to do the nuclear eals as rapidly as we can. and probably in sequence before we try to solidify other deals. i think there is no question in my mind that in some core doors, in some discussions, ther issues come up. it is more important to have the iranians know what we think about these questions then to have them presume the worst in terms of how we go ahead. it is important to talk to the saudis about these questions. with respect to syria, it is a
>> let me talk about the overture on syria. >> the only positive development since the beginning f the syrian crisis. the syrian crisis, even the last two years, this is the only serious positive. this is only due to cooperation between russia and the united tates. therefore, there is already one big step for syria to take.
o engage and push aside to give up -- assad to give up political weapons. >> that is not the solution. that is the entry point to getting to the solution. no one, i think, at least not in a public way. it does not establish the basis for trying to move ahead with an approach to resolving syria. they are reluctant to agree to something.
that is the only point i was making. they had a particular step that opened the door to these other questions. stopping this location that is taking place in the region. certainly jordan and lebanon. they feel the effects, to say nothing of the horror. i think it will take time. i would warmly welcome them into the steps if they agreed it was a common basis. >> there is another step lready underway. there is multilateral cooperation, how many examples do you want?
>> another basis. we will need a cease-fire for hat. >> no extremism and terrorism. iran would fall prey to both. if we agree that syria has no military solution, if we agree or a transitional period, if we agree to pave the ground to decide about the next president and constitution, you would have them indefinitely. >> we need them backing a cease-fire. we have to get chemical weapons out. that is a precondition. >> it will not be a
cease-fire. as long as they are not ahead f syria. >> having a pre-commitment to get rid of it. >> it is only the truism. it has to be clear that the transitional machine can evolve the current head. t makes sense to recognize that upfront. it seems to me a necessary -- >> you said that the negotiations have to be solated. >> iran wanted separate.
if you make concessions, we will cut you some slack in syria. i think there is a relationship in the sense that if this is successful, it is going to facilitate cooperation on syria. they will be more supportive on engagement in syria. >> responding to some of your questions, a person says i think his position is based on survival of their country. do you think the position changes?