tv Worlds Apart RT March 22, 2019 1:30am-2:01am EDT
hello and welcome to well it's a part of american policy in iraq was never a smashing success but apparently there's still a lot of room to make it worse the secretary of state's recent visit to the region all in the name of curtailing the iranian influence was full of bold proclamations and quiet reversals what does the trump policy in iraq ultimately come down to will to discuss that i'm now joined by mayor should have done far an iranian israeli middle east analyst and lecture at the into disciplinary center in tears lee and mr jenner then for fake you very much for your time and sort of for bungling your name . so ok no problem i guess i'm not the first one to do that correct now my initial idea was to discuss with you this latest bout if american diplomacy in the middle
east but i think we need to start one week earlier with a speech that mike compared delivered at a conference in houston in which he's sad that russia invaded ukraine to get access to oil fields that iran is pretty much doing the same in its own region now on russia ukraine he paid into a wrong whatever motivates moscow's policy on the ukraine it's not or oil but what about iran east really after energy no it's not a question of energy i think it's much more about influence. iran wants to increase since your strategic and geopolitical reach in the region this is something that every country wants to do the iranians want to strengthen their muscle and strengthen the region strengthen their influence and to use it in there as part of a balance of power game against united states against israel and the saudis and at
the same time i think the iranians want to increase their leverage in the region as a means of as part of a power play within iran because there are parts of the iranian political establishment who want to focus more in work iran has many domestic problems but there are those who want to focus on wars and this again iran's middle east strategy is part of the power of power play within domestic iranian politics and as you pointed out many countries do that both on the regional and sometimes global level and yet in his speech secretary perez sat without a hint of irony that there could not be more of a contrast about how america uses its energy sources and how the leaders of the islamic republic of iran use there and by the way he said there are no there is but on substance do you think he's right. you know runs a very or a very rich country in terms of gas and oil resources. america is now one of the world leaders in shale oil look at this time of the living of course america is much richer because of other reasons a bigger country with access to two oceans huge country or the same time there are
many people in iran who are very angry that iranian rulers the regime has not used the oil money to build a diversified economy there was after forty years of revolution it's a little bit embarrassing for some iranians that the biggest export that the country has is always when you take into consideration there are many many thousands of tens of thousands hundreds of thousands if not millions of well educated iranians at home and abroad well but i'm sure you know that many americans are also pretty unhappy with how dire government allocates their resources i think the question is different the question is that the americans have always mix politics and trade especially trade and hydro carbons that's the basis for their alliance with the saudis that's what they do in europe with lho being against the russian gas pipelines even if political calculations go into the arena and an edgy sales aren't they dwarfed by the american product. well the iranian iranians are at war with the with the u.s.
but look at the end of the day it's different you know for america america until now has not had its own oil resources so yes oil has played a very big part in in its foreign policy a world in its power projection abroad russia you don't have that problem russia is a energy rich country so in america it has been part of part of the goal for his foreign policy adventures abroad we see it not always but in iraq certainly played a part and for iran to see to you for you ron the question of oil is how it uses it at home how money is distributed inside iran there are many people who are very unhappy away the way it's distributed now you say for and it's all about the domestic use and yet compared particularly singled out the iranian gas and electricity sales to iraq as an example of that malicious influence of the us just a few days later his own state department on the recombination of the pentagon issued a waiver from the sanctions to allow iraq to buy electricity from iran isn't it
just still little bit inconsistent inconsistent its power you know it's they try to use their own lives on the one hand. on the one hundred americans are very much trying to isolate iran in the region on the other hand they realize that there's only so much they can push them the iraqis get forty percent of their electricity from iranian gas you will not find it many countries if not even one country in a world who is willing to cut off forty percent of its electricity that's not going to happen so that creates a problem for. the problem for the u.s. government is that look i hold the iranian regime very much responsible for its very aggressive attitude towards america in israel but at the same time america to walk out of the iran being was a wrong move it has left america isolated to another little bit nervous that because they're isolated because america because the europeans don't support them because the russians and the chinese don't support them you know their reach is limited under the sea. with iraq the con the con push iraq too much because iraq is
relying on iran for gas and electricity and one of the reasons they can't push iraq too much is because i think at this current moment there is simply no alternative to the iranian electricity remember last year there was a temporary halt in electricity exports which sparked violent protests on the streets of bastro with more parading through the city and attacking the symbols of the iraqi political power i mean whether the trumpet mr likes it or not aren't the rainy and energy supplies crucial to the america's own objective of keeping iraq relatively safe. preventing it from imploding once again that's correct and i can argue with that but look i just don't get what's the point of such demands when they clearly could not be accommodated without risking and not the outbreak of violence and when you have to walk them badly just a few days later. again trump doesn't know if he has a look trump is going to go run for elections in twenty twenty to show results will
come out of iran there was a been a major part of his foreign policy he sees it as an achievement so when the americans go to work in twenty twenty you don't want to say ok what did you do with this did you get iran to return to the negotiation table. and for d.m. to say yes i did he needs to have iran so isolated that they do come back what as long as iran is dealing with countries such as iraq it makes it more difficult in terms of perception it makes it more more difficult for him to say that you know that i'm isolating iran that the iranians are going to come back to the negotiation table. this is a sign you know this is a this is a very flawed design when you have something that has a flawed design if it's an aircraft from the beginning it was a flawed design you're going to meet problems sooner or later i'm american walking out of the iran deal was a flawed strategy this is one of the consequences now the iranians have long been
pretty skillful in turning the american failure to their own advantage do you think they will do it once again this time around with iraq i'm not sure social work somehow we have to take a broader view your focusing too much in my opinion on iraq i think the bigger issue for iran is what's happening inside its own borders people are of course people don't like what trump is doing to them but from what i can see people are in iran are very very worried about the issue of corruption you know in tehran there are people tomorrow is the persian new year first of all happy new year to old your iranian audience and anybody who supports who celebrates nauru's you know people are having problems buying. you know buying food or buying old the stuff or nauru's a confectionery under some people in tehran who driving season portioned this really angers people i think for iranians that's more important and this is likely to be to kill his heel as much as iraq iran success in iraq is notable and iran can
use it to turn it against americans but that won't be enough iran the iranian rulers need to put their own house in order and what's happening inside iran i think is creating more enemies for iran's role as the trumpet. could well the reason i'm focusing on that is because this program is primarily about foreign policy rather than domestic of any particular country and let's have me that i think the the issue of wealth inequality is perhaps even more pressing in the united states otherwise they would have elected donald trump i guess not as much as someone in the united states and we still have a you have a judiciary that's independent but we are not comparing these two political systems we're talking about how they exercise power on the international stage and on the international stage and it looks to me that the americans despite all their power doing it in a very inconsistent and the kind of way that truly defies the logic you said that
the logic was flawed but i'm struggling to see analogic of making a bold statement and walking it back quietly just a couple of days later i mean that to me at least seems to be undermining the credibility of one of the most if not the most powerful country on this planet some of those the trumpet ministration have much credibility to begin with i don't think he does but look the americans have a strong economy they use it as leverage they use sanctions in order to get what they want just as russia uses its strong forces as leverage to get what it wants every country tries to use the area where they have a competitive advantage over their rivals over the side that they're facing to get what they want sun for the americans it's now the economy and i'm not you know in terms of iraq look at the end of the day. i don't think iraq is going to be the make or break when it comes to iran ever returning to the negotiation table just as trump wants them i think it's
a question of trump if trump is reelected and iran has to face another four years of trump then i think that could bring back the iranians reluctantly but then again i don't know how they could trust the americans after the walked out of the nuclear deal but iraq is to be honest it's a side show i things. syria's much more important roxanna for in terms of america and israel facing of iran now the issue of an id you was not the only news item to come out of this trip also hinted that the united states may designate iran's revolutionary guards as a foreign terrorist organization if that's worth your happened it would be the first time washington designated a unit of another government's military as a terrorist group is that also an empty threat or do you think it may actually materialize i don't know if it will return realized but. i hope it doesn't and to realize the revolutionary guard is extremely unpopular in iran the revolutionary
guard is. carrying it's got a huge economy conglomerate which is very corrupt inside iran the revolutionary guard isn't there injuring my life and my life of my family and my my compadre it's an israel the revolutionary guard is supporting the most brutal regime in this region which is president bashar al assad i think it's a very welcome move trunk does that i rather him sanctioning the revolutionary guard than fighting it. off course the implications of the revolutionary guard will push back but there's not much that they can do in syria to be honest with you because in syria thankfully for israel and saudi arabia the country that has the upper hand is your country it's russia as you know russia has a totally different take on the range revolutionary guards they managed to contribute to reading that country all the foreign terrorist forces that many governments including by the way some speculated israel supported in that country
so i think you can understand that as much as you dislike them it could have massive massive implications for global politics aren't you troubled by the those implications. you know in syria there were three hundred thousand dead civilians. you know a course there were some isis people and some extremist people first of all israel didn't help them that's a myth second of all you know i miss the bashar al assad for years he was a transit point for jihad he's we're going to iraq to fight american forces he was a big pile of those jihad these and now he's trying to portray himself as somebody who is fighting terrorism and all of the respect that he's not trying to portray anything that countries facing it was facing a major terrorist onslaught and it's well documented for you to minimize minimize the input of the saudis the americans and i'm sorry to say these release is i think a little bit analytically unfair if i can put it mildly i think it's very sincere to say that bashar assad has killed more civilians in this region than any other or
any other leader in the past two decades you seem more than people who led the. campaign against moammar gadhafi in libya you really think that the syrian the war trumps everything else that has happened in in that region including the pad the palestinian issue as well i'm not trying to minimize it but the fact remains that in terms of the leader killing his own people in terms of the muslim the killing his own muslim people by cheryl assad has killed more than saddam hussein bashar assad has killed more than. and of course bashar assad has chilled more muslims than have been killed in the palestinian israeli conflict you can check those numbers well i actually checked those numbers and i think my stance is very different from yours but anyway for the time being we have to take a very short break but maybe we'll be back in just a few moments statement. after
the previous stage of my career was over everyone wondered what i was going to do next the pope the pope different clubs on one hand it is logical to send them feel . well everything is familiar on the other i wanted a new challenge and the fresh perspective i'm used to surprising. or not to give you. i'm going to talk about football not for you or else in the sink i was going to go. by the way what is it that flying here.
is going on the phone lines smoke why don't they come in said i'm a muslim on muslim for the influence you know members of sun love photosensitive a. lot of muslims but. i just i think that doesn't. mean she is or was you make your grandmother's you know your slam. dunk on bar from the sun no my book you go google british pushback from the family. i mean the god. doesn't understand. if you. please ok. you. are.
welcome back to worlds apart mayor david down for an iranian israeli middle east analyst mr jepson for just before the break we talked about potential ramifications of doesn't. needing iran's revolutionary guard as a terrorist organization and i think it's not only iran that could be affected take iraq for example there are many iran's support it actually is a bit in the iraqi parliament. it could also undermine its new and still fairly fragile government and the americans to have something to lose i mean they maintain a residual force in iraq around five thousand troops do you think their security will be taken into consideration when the decision about the r r g status is being made. it will be let's not forget that during the after
u.s. invasion of iraq iranian probably iranian forces and iraqi forces linked with iran were responsible for the death of more than a thousand american soldiers so this is something that the americans are aware of and i think if they do go ahead on. labeled i.r.g.c. as a terrorist organization it will be the start of america settling scores with for killing their soldiers in iraq and i think it's likely to take military action against i mean it's a sonority old to make military action against u.s. forces in iraq and i think the americans this time will who will make will undertake much more forceful measures now just days after paris middle east tour the iraqi defense minister travel to damascus to discuss with his iranian and syrian counterpart as the opposition to the u.s. his role in syria it looks like the american rhetoric is pushing the iraqis into the reins hands does it not look the rock is or in
a very peculiar position there they have the face between iran and saudi arabia and turkey to have to be very careful how they play the superpowers of course no one no country like stuff foreign forces on their soil i'm sure the iraqis don't want american forces. in the sober for now in america sana was very very crucial in terms of fighting in iraq if it wasn't for american help people the popular militia forces which are trained by iran and have close links to iran many of them they would not have been able to defeat isis they tried to fight they tried to invade numerous occasions and despite massive numeral numerical superiority they could not beat isis which was a smaller number until i repeat until the u.s. air force came about well you know also for effort getting about the presence of the russian they are a force on the ground but i will let it slide russian air force in syria has been crucial but in terms of iraq it was the americans russia russian air force has been
crucial in fighting dying very much so without a shadow of the doubt but also russian air force has been crucial in bombing opposition forces who are nothing to do with dark well who also have to be a pretty radical and extremist agenda groups like al nusra no not all of them know obviously not all of them not all people who kill for killed in the rag by american forces reported terrorists but they were killed nonetheless and you know that this is how war unfolds i mean israel knows that from its own experience sure and so does russia absolutely and i'm not trying to pretend that russia is on the somewhat higher moral ground here that's the american position i think most of the time now let me bring you back to the iranian iraqi diplomacy because i'm really interested in how it develops that meeting. that i mentioned in damascus came on
the heels of what some described as a historic visit by iranian president hassan rouhani to iraq and i know that you wrote recently that that cheap raises important questions for israel what kind of questions. well in israel it's our interest of the moderates in iran have a stronger hand not that big they like israel they don't like israel it's just because the moderates in iran such as president rouhani know that iran faces one of the strongest and the most devastating drought it has ever faced and iran needs to look inside more than outside rather than challenging israel needs to challenge its own problems so the question is will will will the trip to iraq strengthen his hand domestically and unfortunately no because in iran is the revolutionary guard on all the old you know regime affiliated organizations that have the stronger hand they have much better access in iraq they have the rocket fire not the iranian foreign
minister unfortunately in israel for israel not because rouhani likes israel but unfortunately for us in iran who want to focus internally are not going to increase their leverage as a result of the systolic visit to iraq you know some i have to tell you i'm iranian as well as israeli i lived through the iran iraq war for seven years we left iran a year before it finished to watch an iranian president go to iraq like that is just for me it's incredible but internally the decide that wants to look internally and to reduce tensions with the outside world didn't come out stronger as a result of this iraq wasn't on and that's a disappointment for us in israel you said a moment ago that israel has an interest in the moderate forces prevailing in iran and to me that wasn't evident at all in. reaction to the iranian foreign minister zarif shortly threats ignatius i mean there was quite
a bit of cool loathing on that and yeah aspire they bowed cities departure he almost a credit for that is israel really interested in the moderates gaining an upper hand in iran now you're israel doesn't want to run back was this let's not forget that israel was the only country supporting. iran during the iran iraq war we faced in israel iran you know you run a regime denies the holocaust it has called for the elimination of the state of israel certain members of the iranian regime deny holocaust not all of them i'll send you know what i'll put it on when you put this on facebook i'll show you the text the exact text from supreme leader ayatollah khomeini who called who called the holocaust sana son in persian means it's a myth just like you'd call cinderella the story of sin there are lots and so he's a holocaust denier but at the same time natanya who look. netanyahu is a populist politician who only in my opinion wants to stay in power yes iran is
that enemy of the state of israel and her people on it and he always very much guilty of using the iran issue and abusing the iran issue and exaggerating the iranian threat for his own purposes and i think what he did recently was. against it as much as i disagree with that if i don't like him yes netanyahu wants to see the moderates out and i think this is very wrong and hopefully in the next prime in the next elections in israel we're going to push it on you know out of power i'm going to have a much more sensible leadership in israel towards all of our problems not just iran's was the issue of palestine and of course course towards the question of iraq you mentioned the upcoming elections in israel and there there is speculation at least among foreign policy analysts that one of the purposes of comparison was to kind of bush that electoral chances do you believe that that that to be the case and i really hope that's not why he's coming here i would resent any foreign
politician be there from from the united states or from mexico or from madagascar coming here to boost the chances of this party or the other if he's here for that and i completely condemn it but i think he is here for other reasons look trump an attorney who are kinda tsp. it's you know if the attorney i was in the prime minister of the state of israel he would make the perfect tea party. congressman in the united states i think there are kindred spirits they look at things in a very much in the same way and worries pompei are going to go is not going to go to europe because the europeans resent him for what he did today iran deal so usually goes to his audience which is mr netanyahu on and of course the saudis also backed america to pull out of the iran nuclear deal for their own reasons now what i find very interesting is that while trump's approval ratings are pretty high among the israeli jews. his standing with the american jews and the american public
at large is not that impressive do you think this association a very close association with trump is going to serve israel well in the longer term you know. diaspora jews are incredibly important to us they're incredibly important to us you know this country was created after many people here sacrificed their lives but maintained its presence on existence not just because of a strong army but because of a because of a very strong diaspora relation i challenge you to find many ten buildings in israel universes which were not donated by some diaspora jew from the united states we are incredible in that and to them for their help and i think netanyahu cozying up to trump has hurt our relationship with the diaspora we see and this is this is something that's of great concern and this is one reasons why i hope netanyahu
loses in the next elections and why i hope trump loses in the next u.s. elections because this is damaging our relationship with our brethren in the in the in the u.s. jewish community well we have to leave it there i guess we will have to wait and see whether your predictions or at least your hopes work out. in the meantime i really appreciate your being with us today thank you very much for your perspective . i encourage our viewers to keep this conversation going on our social media pages add up here again same place same time here on the wall the part.
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