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tv   Inside Story 2018 Ep 79  Al Jazeera  March 21, 2018 2:32pm-3:01pm +03

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i'm not sure what happened to the rest and whether or not because on it you're either really people say the suspect behind a series of pastoral bombings in texas has been killed now they've identified him as a twenty four year old white male but say the motive behind the blast isn't clear to me a mass of president to call cho has announced he's stepping down in a statement on facebook chore said he wanted to take it the rest of a rest from work the country's vice president is expected to fill the void until a new president is selected in syria at least sixty civilians have been killed in the last remaining rebel held parts of eastern ghouta in attacks by the syrian military and their allies the syrian government says another thirty five people died when a rocket fired by rebels landed at a market in government controlled damascus and african leaders are meeting in rwanda to sign a new freight tree free trade deal the african continent free trade area would
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allow unrestricted movement of people goods and capital cost fifty five countries those were the headlines inside story is next to stay with us. making his debut in the united states the saudi crown prince promotes a vision of books home for his country but his foreign policies have left the gulf divided and yemen on the brink of famine what impression is mohamed been sound money making on the international stage this is inside story.
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hello there and welcome to the program a. saudi crown prince mohammed bin is on a charm offensive in the united states as he meets u.s. leaders and signs major business deals and zalman is promoting himself as a social and economic reform reinventing his kingdom for the modern era it's possible his first major foreign trip having just wrapped up a visit to the u.k. but since his rise to power the crown prince has been a controversial figure a saudi bombing campaign in yemen has contributed to one of the world's west's humanitarian crises and reports and also a much of a plan to reshape the political map of the middle east and fracture the gulf cooperation council. on a secret meeting of arab leaders on a yacht in the red sea organized by lebanese american businessman. thanks claimed george need to organize the power some at least in twenty fifteen five middle east
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leaders were on the guest list it was mohammed bin sam and then deputy crown prince of saudi arabia mohammed bin zayed the crown prince of abu dhabi egyptian president abdul fattah el-sisi the crown prince of bahrain prince selman and king abdullah of jordan middle east i says leader them to create a new power block in the middle east to combine turkey and iran and he would lobby for them in washington libya was to join the group later its alleged leader a convicted paedophile was told they like the idea there was a meeting were concerned that as the u.s. presidential election was moving into high gear democratic nominee hillary clinton would protect the iran nuclear deal and would be less keen to abandon all the alliances. at the meeting thought the republican candidate donald trump might be more likely to support the initiative we have seen for the last nine months that there has been a new alliance that has emerged between the united arab emirates saudi arabia egypt and what bahrain as a junior party as a junior partner and what or not that alliance can sustain itself in the long run
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that is unclear but there are certainly efforts to boost that alliance at the expense of the gulf cooperation council. it was reported to king abdullah of jordan congressional leaders in the u.s. that turkey was the main regional threat to stability but he later allegedly fell foul of the group for not truly supporting the blockade against qatar which is no ten months old and jordan voted against donald trump's controversial move to recognize jerusalem as the capital of israel this bloc that has so to speak emerges is not and that a bloc that can implement and carry out actual policy. and what we have seen us that the u.s. prefers a bilateral relationships with each of the sixty sixty countries and therefore unity us this essential thank you very much leader is being investigated as a possible key link between donald trump and the emma ratties and to see if there
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was an attempt to buy influence by indirectly sending money to the trump presidential campaign peter also arranged the meeting in trump tower in december twenty sixth in the brought together trump son in law and key advisor joe krishna then chief strategist steve bannon and the crown prince of abu dhabi he was also at the second meeting in the seychelles which brought together significant truck donor erik prince and this man killed dimitri of a russian banker with close links to president vladimir putin several embassies were approached for comment on the middle east as allegations no one provided any reaction alan fischer al-jazeera. thank you. some have been salma is now on the international stage they became saudi crown prince last year is in line to succeed his father as king but it's all man has remoted a range of reforms at home including easing restrictions on women's rights and the more open policy on entertainment and public performances and he's behind
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a major anti corruption drive targeting the saudi elite critics say the campaign also removes domestic rivals the crown prince is also a vocal opponent of iran in a recent interview he compared the country's supreme leader to of elf. let's bring in our guests now and m. washington we have joe macron policy analyst at the arab sense at washington d.c. in beirut rami khouri senior public policy fellow an adjunct professor of journalism in american university of beirut and in london sami on the edge and chief of international in chess my warm welcome to all of you and mother in sound money is spending nearly three weeks in the u.s. it's extremely long trip what's he doing there and he starts to forge the relation with the with the white house this is the third meeting was with straw we have a. big changes of the numbers position now he's trying basically to make the case for the priority of europe the priority of the changes is making at home what the
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early world vision of iteration was to focus on the g.c.c. and the unite to unite basically the front against iran and we have a new day there because that sense i think it was the saudis learned the lesson with obama after the arab spring the iran do you so they they pushed for to forge in relation with the strabane stray should that to be in their interest to know they are succeeding you have a drop as a person relation was there was question do you have the u.s. establishment basically trying to resist the cozy your saudi relations where you have a larger u.s. interest in the region so i'm not sure i mean. the charm offensive as you said in your introduction. but i'm not sure to what extent they can achieve together on the on the international stage and in relation to the bilateral relations but this strike basically to forge versus first goal is to cement positions in the sea as
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the new rule or no it was your struggle with mission of this. second he wants to basically a promote his id or regional policy for the us foreign policy how it was to align with the saudis sure does. look of challenges and that sense absolute it will look at those that run the saudi foreign minister says that relations with the us are us an all time high but an interesting report in the guardian newspaper insalata has been warned by reason of advisors to distance himself from trump because he's a volatile leaves do you think the crown prince is heating up one probably not he he is embarking on a an extraordinary trip that represents really the second phase of what started with margaret thatcher and ronald reagan which was the global triumph of entertainment and free market economies and now we're having this relationship expanded between the saudis and the united states or at least with trump and the
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saudi leadership and to free markets entertainment and the war industries which both countries are very focused on and he doesn't particularly care about you know the political standing of trump right now they assume and so do a bit trump is going to hang around in fact it's a sign of the vulnerability in the saudi american relationship that it is trump and question or who are the two critical elements in the relationship and but this is a sign of the fact that the saudis are simple quite amateurish in foreign policy they proved that in the region they're not proving it internationally but the triumph of public relations for them now is the key factor in this process they've spent millions tens tens of millions on public relations advertising buying think tanks buying journalists taking people on trips and this probably won't work but it gives them some breathing space people are intrigued by this guy has done some amazing things inside saudi arabia in terms of rapid change so it's too early
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to have a real verdict on him but what we can see is the process that he's leading is a process that's largely based on autocratic change from the top war making in the region threats to blow. public relations international linked to sales of forms of the congress just been in the u.k. just following on from what romney was saying there how successful has this charm offensive of the west been so far i think with regards to his visit to the u.k. i think it was a well planned trip from the perspective that he took advantage of terry's amazed desire to show the british public that she can bring in investment as a result of following her negotiations with the european union i think also with regards to the trip to the u.k. i think it was more directed to a domestic audience within saudi arabia as opposed to winning anything really from the u.k. government remember that the perception of the u.k.
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in saudi arabia is still a country that is great still a country that has significant influence even if it is on the wane following the vote for briggs it so i think when he sees to resume a rolling get when the peace saudi people see to resume a rolling out the red carpet for mohamed bin some and that gives him a huge boost within saudi arabia itself so i think the u.k. trip was mainly directed at the domestic audience within saudi arabia but the washington trip is mainly directed to the u.s. audience and not just to donald trump i heard the previous speaker talking about trump and questioner being the main pieces of addiction which currently is true but i think part of this trip is to rectify that he's meeting james mattis who was a critic of the blockade on qatar he's meeting security officials he's lobbying buying think tanks buying journalist all of wish to cement himself and risk or saudis influence on the institutions in the u.s. and not just relying on trump in other words it seems he's listen to the advice that was given in the guardian that he should distance himself from trying to not necessarily distancing himself but in the sense that he is by it he's restoring the
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relations between saudi arabia and the us that were there before obama came into power which is very warm very close very on board with the pentagon with the state department and also with the presidency and so presumably be interested also in meeting my. like pompei of course he's nominated to be the next section of say with rex tillerson out what difference might pompei zero bring to the relations to tell us and was very pro cast when saudi launched its blockade pushing trump not to support saudi in that. yes just first to the to the guest in london i think the difference though there is a little bit of reservation for the establishment because most of the u.s. saudi communication is going through there's no basically record minutes of those schools nobody is knowing what's happening so there's a bit of frustration so they have to basically reach out not to make it the more
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private communication general between bin settlement and have more the establishment involved because when trump leaves or when to push the leaves at some point they have to deal again with the establishment which have a lot of reservation on yemen on other points not to the point of view i think the push to resolve the issue good be we can after the terrorists or leave they will try i think trump is going to try to make bridges but eventually the saudi be the signal this week they said it's not a priority for us and we can live with that of the long prefer to have kuwait continue its mitigation instead of drum so i think is going to try to push but because that is the going to force the saudis to make it a consideration. so basically they basically to to basically it's a piece sings too but i don't see a big significant shift in the coming in the coming weeks just pick up on what you were saying before about krishna's still being so the number one channel of
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communication with the saudi crown prince is that still the case even when he's been downgraded and standing in the white house it is because the president can't give him an exception to receive he prepared the strip he's is the key person now during this trip is that street there's this question and he's not telling everybody in the administration what's happening he might make big big decision he might give some concessions or hints of concessions so nobody is really clear he's acting as a defector secretary of state delivers and has been marginalized we have to see. if you're going to make more the balance between the two. strong is is is basically representing the interests of the state department of the position overseas so the other further notice though the great to go visit if you do is to the effect he went to mexico he went he met with the president without the u.s. ambassador and mexico so he's continuing his trend or basically controlling
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a specific file related to the. people of sydney is really the musical fight and the charge he's acting as if he is the number one charge with the oversight from the initial security council and as i'm saying is there rummy if it is jay says question is actions of a de facto section of state should we still be on the lookout then for his deal so-called deal of the century between the israelis and the presidents get to be unveiled. well everybody's expecting something to come out of washington soon but it's actually coming out of tel aviv tell of eva's driving this process and then they've got the cushion around trying to buy into an idea of this outside in where you say israelis make peace with many arab countries especially in the gulf and then they all put pressure on the palestinians and force on them a deal that could not possibly be accepted by by any reasonable diplomat or jurist or international lawyer or anybody in the u.n.
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so that probably will happen and the saudis will push for it a little bit but probably not very much because that said the deal as we know what we know about it now would never fly anywhere except maybe in tel aviv possibly in riyadh possibly in washington and you have leaderships and they are world that are desperate for foreign military support and economic support and therefore will go along with whatever the u.s. asked but public opinion their world is very very critical of what's going on including critical of the the palestinian leadership to a large extent so i wouldn't put any emphasis on the palestinian israel israeli so-called deal of the century that the americans are coming out with it's another sign of the nature of american pro israeli diplomacy which is now linked to saudi and that r.t. and a few other people in the region siding with the americans and the israelis and this is a sign of the terrible imbalance of power we have in the region and it won't last for
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very long but we have to put up with it for a while that's i mean how long do you think it will last fall i think to be honest i think that we're talking a lot about mama beside him as a ship with bush as a relationship with donald trump but let's also remember that it's not necessarily set in stone in the way that where perhaps envisaging get i think we have to remember that donald trump has already called up the image of thought that invited him to washington. in april in a sign of the changing his mind over the blockade in qatar this is site isn't it if we're talking if we are if we were assuming that the relationship between saudi arabia and donald trump and push in particular was very tight the reality is trump is starting to change his mind and i think this is why you haven't said man this visit is so fundamental for him you asked why is there for three weeks because of the one hundred missing men realizes that relying on trump alone is not enough he needs to win over the u.s. institutions let's remember that in the beginning of the two thousand and seventeen the cia awarded the first ever prize for to
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a saudi prince in recognition of combating terrorism but they gave it to mohammed bin nayef not to muhammad bin segment and this was at a time when mama businessmen was maneuvering against muhammad bin nayef the americans were saying to bin sentiment we don't want you we want been a if to be the crown prince we want him to become the future king so we have to remember that been said man is going to washington on a p.r. offensive not just to establish a policy based on trump and questioner but he needs to convince the pentagon he needs to convince the cia he needs to use from players influence in the cia to this cause as well he's to get the oil companies all of them on board and convince them that he is a better alternative than one hundred binay if and he is the best prince there possible remember one hundred percent man scuppered these american plans for been a if so he needs to convince them that all of their calculations that they made that they can put them to one side they can now rely on him so this is why if we talk either israel or palestine deal going back just to answer that particular question of yours about the israel palestine and whether we can live with these
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circumstances i think one question of one have been some men made their agreement whereby vincent man would pressure the palestinians i don't think and i think jerusalem was necessarily part of the deal because that's a deal breaker saudi you could have brought my more diverse to the table with israel on unfavorable terms if trump had not announced as a capital of israel now it's untenable for saudi arabia and it's untenable for been someone to come out publicly and support this initiative. and i think because he is not establish himself entirely in saudi arabia remember he's not king yet because he's not established in saudi arabia it's not a gamble worth taking and this is why this trip is so difficult for bin segment how do the peace trump and appease the pentagon and appease the cia and to peace and to peace to all companies and still maintain your popular support within saudi arabia it seems an impossible task and i think this is why we see this very lavish p.r. campaign. it turned out all that. might not have been so modest that one very
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strong card to play has met and that's this iran public enemy number one line i mean in the c.b.s. interview he pushed that strongly and that plays in very well with the white house as wealthy of the middle east did but just to to to because a small observation i mean the issue with the hubbard been saman and the pentagon establishes mud that if he's going to take boat or not the issue is his policy you try to turn a road u.s. policy in the region we saw what happened in lebanon in yemen. and other places so the issue is more not with the character bush or the they have a problem with him ascending to power it's the fact no but but the problem is was more his policy here has to be adjust to a lot more his policy to the to the u.s. policy not on your question yes this is has been point. drop as this idea you have an alliance between. some of the just this week on trees and israel against iran so
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he fits well in this but i'm not sure what she can he can help because the saudis cannot basically fight iran and syria they cannot fight it. in lebanon or of iraq they have and they don't have the same money they had a decade or two decades ago to basically invest drop we saw in the part of the washington post he offered you know saudi arabia to four billion and syria i'm not sure they're willing to avert this. money and a culture that they don't own at this point so there are a lot of challenges but. the saudi foreign minister much of the iran nuclear deal which is you know for the hawkish bottle the obsession is a very good. progress for them but again the pentagon is very worried about canceling the deal it has implications on u.s. forces in iraq and syria so the point is the u.s. and saudi a lot of. interests are not as much allied as to source three decades ago
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a change so drop and had been some men though are going against the trend against the current of the u.s. saudi relations have evolved in the last decade or more after the arab spring after the iran nuclear deal after the u.s. presence in the region so they are going against gays this so we will see i think of the coming weeks the pushback from the pentagon and the cia on guessing the nuclear deal and its implications and now we saw the saudis are more and those in the trump view so it's going to be a very good we will see a bit of what the quarry i think in the coming weeks of the may twelfth regarding the nuclear deal and ready has a bible someone viewed within saudi arabia is c c n n well can does a reform or is he seen as a warmonger for his foreign policy well the reports that we keep hearing and many of which are filtered through media that are paid or owned by the saudis the reports are saying that
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a lot of young people most of them are happy with what he's doing and that's probably correct to liberalize their of their lives their cultural life their woman driving cinemas things of that nature most probably young saudis would would like that the problem that he's going to run into is with the business establishment and part of the religious establishment and parts of the royal family all of whom are very hesitant about the heavy handed top down. rather brutal manner in which he put several hundred business people in jail and in the hotel in custody he hijacked the lebanese prime minister for a few days he made a war in yemen he blockaded qatar he threatened the palestinian jordanian economies a lot of people in the establishment and so do societies are not very happy with the failures and the rather brutish nature of so the diplomacy in the region but internally a lot of the changes that he's doing are appealing to younger people but in the
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establishment the business community and among some religious conservative people tribal people he's definitely going to have opposition the problem is that opposition cannot be expressed in any public way because he personally now oversees all the media he's so you know what he's done is controlled every single lever of power in saudi arabia the military political economic religious cultural everything in media everything is in his control like it is with the c.c. in egypt and like it used to be was saddam hussein so he's got this new form of one person government which we don't know what the saudi people's verdict on that is and we won't know for a couple of years ok sunny just in the last minute we've got much of this trip is the crown prince looking for deals with american companies he's got his eye on saudi post oil he desperately needs to diversify he does need to diversify but i think saudi arabia maintains its reputation i mean he's launched some
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ambitious projects he's got some. businessmen now to back him massey oshie son of japan and all of these other various different business i don't think saudi would have a problem in terms of getting that particular investment and i think the problem that many people have is with mamma beside man's all betray the nature of governance i don't necessarily describing his policy of getting involved in yemen in lebanon i wouldn't necessarily call it policy as much as a need jerk reaction yemen to who he is what about. takeover and hezbollah and michele are all were about to form an alliance that would have meant hezbollah would take complete control of lebanon so i think these were knee jerk reactions more than particular policy but i think with regard to investment saudi arabia remains lucrative and as much as we talk about human rights and chaos and disaster rockefeller said when there's blood on the streets there's money to be made and i think this is the mantra that many of these businessmen follow one of businessmen is opening up monopolies in the country for people he's announcing these ambitious projects he's promised that if the americans won't come he'll get the japanese get the french will get the british will get whoever so i think he's making all these
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different walls fight each other for the saudi arabian economy he has that around co i.p.o. which he's teasing new york with saying i'm i do new york i'm i do singapore i'm i do tokyo all of which to see who will be the biggest bidder who will put the most money in saudi arabia from a very crude very crude perspective it's quite clever whether he'll succeed or not as an army said earlier we need a few years before we can really gauge whether he's been successful or not absolutely is a very ambitious man in the way thanks for all our guests for joining us joe maccarone rami corey and sammy handy and thank you to you for watching you can see the program again any time visiting our web site that's al jazeera dot com and for the discussion to go to our facebook page that's facebook dot com for slash a.j. inside story you can also join the conversation on twitter one hundred's at a.j. inside story from me laura kyle and the whole team here it's by for now.
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maximum while. trying some. centuries in the sky. produce a. list innes bruce. cats are always going places together. a lot has. stories on a suicide bombers killed at least twenty six people in afghanistan's capital kabul it happened close to a shrine west of the city where people were celebrating. chaos and confusion on the streets of kabul as
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a bird see crews rushed to the scene of the latest bomb blast the apparent target afghan celebrating no ruse the persian new year with the money but that the. unfortunately once again our enemies are spilled the blood of our innocent countrymen the young men were holding celebrations for nauru's but he's attacked them here far away from their chosen targets which is an important shrine but the suicide attacker detonated his device around two hundred meters from the car to shockey shrine where many afghans gather to mark the start of the new year holiday kabul university is nearby and most of the dead are understood to be teenagers who were taking part in street celebrations a blast is the deadliest to hit the capital after weeks of repeated attacks on saturday a car bomb explosion claimed by the taliban killed at least two civilians several others were wounded in the morn.


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