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tv   Inside Story 2020 Ep 4  Al Jazeera  January 4, 2020 8:32pm-9:01pm +03

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says his fight is now against a foreign occupier after turkey's parliament agreed to send troops to libya after forces have been attacking the capital tripoli since april china has replaced its top representative in hong kong a social rest of the city continues state media say the head of beijing's liaison office wang min has been removed it is the 1st major reshuffle since the protests began. firefighters in australia bracing for a difficult night as hot and windy conditions continue to spread bushfires. $155.00 as a burning in new south wales alone a dozen which are out of control tens of thousands of people have fled the worst affected areas in the southeast well those are the headlines on al-jazeera do stay with us and side stories coming up.
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we did not. take action to start a war. donald trump defends the assassination of iran's top military leader but critics say the u.s. president has made the world a more dangerous place how will the killing of thousands of the money affect american troops abroad and the trigger another endless war this is inside story. hello and welcome to the program i'm home i here in the u.s. president's has long said he'd pull american troops out of what he called the
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endless wars in the middle east but donald trump's critics say he may just have laid the groundwork for a new conflict funerals have been held for iran's military commander qassam salami who died in a u.s. airstrike in iraq on friday armed groups in the middle east supported by to her on a promise and revenge the u.s. is urging americans to leave iraq immediately and the sending extra troops to the region in case of reprisal attacks and while trump's republican party has praised the targeted killing of solo mommy it democrats are not happy as heidi joke astral reports us president donald trump tried to justify his decision to order the killing of iranian revolutionary guard commander qassam sulaimani by claiming the sulaimani had been planning eminent and sinister attacks on americans in the region we took action last night just stop
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a war we did not. take action to start a war the us president said sulaimani was responsible for the deaths of thousands of american service people over 2 decades solid mady has been perpetrating acts of terror to destabilize the middle east for the last 20 years what the united states did yesterday should have been done long ago trump's republican allies in congress agreed or to all this evil man operated without them strike and countless and often have suffered for now his terrorist leadership has been and democrats say trump ordered the drone strike that also killed the leader of tehran back iraqi militia groups without consulting congress and warned of serious consequences this is the equivalent of
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the iranians assassinating the u.s. secretary of defense i do not believe the administration has gamed out. how very badly this could go for the us and our interests this action may well have brought our nation closer to another endless war exactly the kind of endless war the president promised he would not drag us into. iran has promised retaliation the u.s. state department issued a security alert urging all american citizens to leave iraq immediately despite the secretary of state's claims on u.s. media that americans in the region are now safer after suleyman his demise while no one is accusing president shrub of ordering friday's drone strike for political purposes and does overshadow all political headlines in the u.s. including trump's impending impeachment trial the u.s. senate was to begin this new year by taking on that as their 1st order of business
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and instead senators are preparing for briefings on the u.s. military strike and whatever response it may bring heidi joe castro al-jazeera washington well the u.s. has maintained a military presence in the middle east for decades according to central command's there are at least $60000.00 troops in 20 countries after solomon is killing the u.s. is sending an additional $3000.00 to the region well iraq already has 5000 troops for when the war against i so there are still nearly 900 soldiers in syria that's despite the president saying a job or they were pulling out it's kuwait is homes of more than 13000 u.s. military personnel with an army headquarters 2 air and one naval bases $500.00 american soldiers were food to saudi arabia last year because of increased tension with iran and qatar has a huge u.s.
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air base housing up to 13000 troops. thanks. well let's bring in our guests now hillary mann leverett its is c.e.o. of the political risk consultancy strategic and a former u.s. diplomats she joins us from washington d.c. in london under this creek is a assistant professor and in defense studies at king's college london and co-author of surrogate warfare the transformation of war in the 21st century also joining us from washington is adolfo franco republican strategist and former adviser to senator john mccain welcome to you all will start in washington d.c. and with yourself hillary mann leverett. you for. plants your military strategists this action taken by the trumpet ministration will have been game to some extent so what sort of impact do you think the u.s.
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come expects from iran what sort of impact is the u.s. braced for well from my understanding when this has been gamed out when a war with iran is gamed out here in washington in defense circles the united states actually does not do very well we are not able to at the end of the day really continue the split or a dominance that you would need to win a war the ability here though for the political elite to underestimate the strength of the islamic republic of iran goes back 40 years and my concern is that they still do not understand that going to war with iran will be going to war against the most potent adversary that we have seen since world war 2 it will be a difficult war for iran if it comes to pass i think they are ready though for this sacrifice and i think many or any ron actually think they need to do so they need
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to have a war with iran to get the united states out of the middle east i do not think that president trump and his political advisers really have any real understanding of what that type of war would be what the cost would be politically and militarily to the united states an economically the president i think was motivated largely by domestic political consideration ok or what human whatever to motivations were spooked into the possibility of another benghazi ok what will come to the potential motivations perhaps later let's move on to andreas krieg a bit of it seems they said are you being painted there what impact do you for see we are in a guessing game the new windows hieron is going to respond but what would. you think is the likely scenario are we heading for world war 3 no absolutely not i mean this has taken world war 3 that was going around social media yesterday's completely blown out of proportion i think this was a escalatory strike it kind of gets us to
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a brings us to neutral jack dri in the region and particularly in iraq and it's a continuation of an ongoing standoff between the united states and iran that is going back to early last year after the u.s. in a lottery withdrew from the j.c. p.r. way this maximum pressure campaign is part of a type of war from an iranian point of view where you know the arranger telling you already we are at war with the united states so the whole debate of we're going to war we're already at war which is below the threshold of of an international armed conflict but it is a war nonetheless and i think we're going down a spiral of escalation where it is very very important right now for the united states to make sure that the response that will come from the iranians and it has to come and it will come not bound by geography or time it will come at a time when we least expect it and it can take a lot of different shapes and forms and probably will be executed by sarra gets rather than directly by the iranian military but you know this kind of escalatory
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response that will come from iran has to be under a certain threshold as well it doesn't have it can't cross a certain red line because the americans don't want to respond with further escalation and i think what's important to note here is that the americans via the swiss embassy as well as by the countries have already tried to reach out to the iranians to tell them make sure that your response is going to be somewhat proportionate that we can actually sit down and go shit well in terms of a proportional response we have had commentators andreas krieg putting out there that the equivalence of cousins on the money is someone at the level of vice president mike pence do you think this was a proportional move from the united states and if so what is the proportional response to that. no i think it was in proportion but it was deliberately not proportionate in a way that for the americans to actually draw a red line the problem is and i agree with hillary a listee trombonist ration doesn't have a strategy it doesn't have an end goal it doesn't have the means and ways to actually see this through if you want to play this game the americans need to play
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this game with maximum military pressure as well that means with the political will to actually fight willing to fight a major war in the region i don't think the americans are at this stage yet but a response from the iranians would be one that can be leveraged against any u.s. force in the region in syria and iraq in particular very vulnerable it could be a drone strike it could be kidnapping of of of u.s. soldiers u.s. civilians u.s. journalists in the region and the iranians have a network that is goes beyond the mena region they can strike in southeast asia and south america in west africa this is where all these are good networks exist for the iranians and they can use these kind of attacks to respond against americans when we least when we least expect it so if a proportionate response means you know we have limit casualties u.s. casualties but there will be u.s. casualties because that would be the kind of proportionate response in iran it's one ok adolfo franco let's start with in terms of the impact the u.s.
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has braced for the united states will have known that by taking out cousin so money there would have been a reaction do you think the u.s. is well equipped to deal with that response at present well that largely depends on iran but i think we need to step back and ask how we got here and why this action was taken by the president and i would simply support the president i do think he has a game plan and their actions have been not only of the last 20 years but more most recently obviously the most recent events the attacks on our embassy orchestrated by iran and its proxies. in iraq what a. happened in bosnia with respect to the death of american personnel and of course the host of other things that have taken place in the region that have affected our interests and our allies and there are a lot of the list is as endless with respect to sell them on e and iran whether it's syria whether it's lebanon yemen attacks on saudi arabia's
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oil facilities so the question is who provoked who's been provoking if you will if you want to call the united states the one of the sleeping giants if you want to use that analogy it's been iran so this is the provocation has been iranian provocation and the response is appropriate here you have really a terrorist he's not the equivalent of the vice president or the secretary of defense these are outrageous comment this is a terrorist revolutionary guard has been designated a terrorist by our government you have a terrorist arriving in baghdad to meet with his number one proxy who was also in an iraqi taken out on this and this strike to meet to plot further attacks on our embassy our personnel and probably our bases in iraq so unlike the previous president president obama there is a red line here and the red line has been crossed and this president has acted and
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he not only has acted in this particular case but has signaled that as you mentioned not only 3500 troops coming to iraq but probably this interest into a new phase where the united states will probably reengage to try to stabilize the situation in iraq which was rapidly deteriorating because every ronnie and interference so i think we need to put this in the context of iranian provocation and our need to respond and i think iran respects strength and it up and appreciates weaknesses and exploits it and has been for a number of years well everybody is but perhaps aargh given so franco that the provocation comes back to the united states with the overthrew. of their democratically elected leader. leaving the blame to one side we are here night we're here let's take a look at course this does this go to iran but we're here now because every rainy
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and actions of course but that's one interpretation but does this make life in the middle east safer particularly for americans do you think that strike makes the situation for americans and their leaders a 1st. and it does for this reason with all due respect to to hillary and others is we have a choice here we either stand up to iran and send the signals that we need to send which the president did or we have a policy of frankly a weakness in appeasement and that's what was happening under the obama administration and i think to do drugs with all the those analogies defense spending sense the the the obama administration's treatment which are on the later version it's a jogger to the little say in reply to a percentage but it's not just if this is just a bomb a president bush had the chance to take the money as well until it's not too rushed and he should have. should have been president trump has said this that very clearly and here it was long overdue and it has been long overdue ok hillary
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hillary mann leverett this was not a strategic decision taken by president trump he is making the same mistake that is a bipartisan mistake that goes across political lines that both president bush and president obama made before him you try to vilify a leader of another state whether it's saddam hussein in iraq or moammar gadhafi in libya which has happened what happened under obama you vilify this leader you invade the country try to destroy the country and think you have a victory that has been proven absolutely wrong it is a strategic quagmire that has sucked in the united states into the middle east reined our resources killed our our soldiers and devastated those countries to no positive effect was we have a rock under president bush hillary that had more than 100000 troops there and have never been able to stabilize it is more anti-american today that it ever was it's more of a threat to the united states today than it was the same thing with libya that had an obama it exact same thing libya is
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a more of it but then i added it was because of the u.s. military intervention hillary just it's not you. know i don't want to make my or i know point on this issue. you might try final point on this issue is the last time that i was in beijing might one of my chinese counterparts said to me the best thing the united states can do for china today is get itself dragged into yet another strategic admire in the middle east when we invaded iraq back in 2003 that gave the chinese a quiet decade to speed up every piece of their economic and military power and look where we are today on the cusp of yet again another strategically devastating defeat for the united states. what if. hillary if i could quickly 1st of all the last people i would take advice in terms of the formulation of american foreign policy would be chinese communist diplomats but you might have a different view on that regard you are taking
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a quantum leap here to suggest one moment that the united states is contemplating a war with iran i think the president has made made it clear i think iran does not want to war i don't think the united states is looking for war with iran obviously when there are tensions and matters of this complexity there's always the possibility of escalation there is a risk there's no question about that but there is not a game plan as you somewhat suggested that we're now intervening interventions you mentioned i grant were probably poorly or not rightly executed and i would share your view if indeed the goal here was to invade iran and read region change in iran this is not a leader and this is a terrorist our government is what sort of clarify the terrorist with this person this person had his person isn't and i'm going to. wait well your strategy your strategy is the ostrich saddam hussein was a saying there and you're right if i could interject here but the but this is because this is not since ordinary hobson's hollow body is
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a foreigner in iraq he said i think going to war because he is. still an army is not a day while funerals are under way and time. i had it's time to letterheads over to the next step if i could come see you reason and celebrations as well under your screed how do you see we have one point of view that the us is not going to get dragged into a war and another point of view that fears this is very much a reality do you think that there is a risk the u.s. could get bogged down in this region or is it time to cut and run it's like look the there has been a real shaping of u.s. engagement in the region under obama already trump is just continuing this and i think trump is very much since it is say doesn't want to get dragged into another major combat operation when we talk about war we mean major combat operations as i said there is a war going on we are in a conflict that turns violent but it's a sargon conflict it's one where the iranians don't fight with you know with major
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combat operations and where we don't fight with major combat operations when i say we i'm in the west and in that respect the americans trump doesn't want to get dragged into a war because it doesn't have the capacity to do so there is there are insufficient troops in the region to actually fight a major combat operation none of the plans none of the operational plans actually point in the direction of saying the u.s. wants to invade iran the problem is however where is this whole spiral of escalation going to leave us if we don't enter into negotiations and i think the plan so i was at the door for him a couple weeks ago where we saw very senior people of the u.s. administration actually diary talking with the iranians so it seems that there is a pathway beyond the u.s. presidential elections where the iranians could talk to the americans and try to find a negotiated way out of this but obviously the government in iran speaks with a different voice than the deep state in iran so the r.g.c. of the could force and so on so but there is
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a pathway forward for negotiation and i do think that the transformation is sincere to say we do want to negotiate but we have to put pressure as well but he's taking a major risk here because the now. retaliatory strike that might come from the other side might push the americans to even escalate further so we have to we have to be very clear in terms of the strategies where do we leave this spiral of violence and where do we actually sincerely talk and how much do we allow the iranians to escalate without asked without us escalating further one other problem here is it is a major threat it's a major risk that the americans are facing very much on their own without their western partners in europe on their side because the europeans don't have a strategy that how to deal with iran and on the other hand it's without the gulf allies as well the u.a.e. qatar and saudi arabia are absolutely not interested in any sort of escalation and they're quite fearful right now that a retaliatory strike by the iranians might struggle strike them right in the heart of the g.c.c. so in this context the americans are absolutely not ready or willing to actually go
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to war to a major combat operation with the iranians and adolfo franco if i can get your reaction to that and quickly because we are running out of time are you concerned at all that the u.s. appears isolated in its attempts to to deal with iran and what would a victory look like to america at this stage. well i don't think it's isolated i don't believe it for one moment obviously there are vested economic interests in iraq when europeans have an iran that make it more difficult at least initially publicly for european allies to rally around the u.s. position which i think it is is being celebrated by all democracies but i think that the game plan here i don't disagree with with the guest from london in large part is is one of yes negotiation and dialogue from strength but the only thing the iranians are going to understand they have been provoking they've been invade doing all kinds of activities in the region that have characterized as terrorist
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activities this is the only signal they will understand in terms of a negotiation i don't think the u.s. wants a war they don't want a war but they are not going to retract as they did in the 1980 s. under ronald reagan when real authority was exercised and real american power was exercised and i think our allies are celebrating this and certainly not there are a lot of celebrations in iraq as well as a consequence of this not by shia i understand that but a lot of other allies in the region now are gratified about the u.s. position of strength ok and they had to remind leverett's how do you see this ending and what does a victory look like given that this is not going to be what we understand as a conventional a conventional military confrontation. you know i think i think i'm the only one here who has actually negotiated with iranian officials i did so as a member of the bush administration after 911 over afghanistan it was a relatively successful negotiation at that time nearly 20 years ago i got to know
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now foreign minister job ads the reef for that period of time for 20 years foreign minister dr i'm sorry has always wanted and has always looked for and negotiating path forward a diplomatic path forward with the united states that has been completely destroyed make no mistake what the united states did what president trump did was a direct attack on the poor leadership of the islamic republic of iran he has unified the factions within iran against any negotiation with the united states and he's unified their determination to expel us forces from the region it may not happen tomorrow but president trump may go down just as president carter did that's what the iranians are looking for a humiliating defeat for what is a real test of the islamic republic of iran an attack on their core leadership ok and finally under this creek your final thoughts on this is to pull missy day it's a recess so a chance to resolve this 'd in a relatively peaceful manner. i do agree that this was an attack at the heart of
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the islamic republic and the islamic republic is with the back with its back against the wall amid you know protests and economic crisis the question is if they move forward no are they going to are they willing to escalate because escalation is not going to serve the iranians well either they're very strategic and they're very calculated in their responses unlike the traumas duration i think their local strategic long term thinking with strategic depth and strategic patience i do think that the iranians will see that there is a pathway forward for negotiation but only off a retaliatory strike that is proportionate to that type of strike that we've seen over the world for it ok lots of food for thoughts a discussion that surely will continue over the coming days and months but for now thank you very much indeed to all our guests hillary mann liver. it's under his creek and adolfo franco thank you to you for watching at home you can see the program again any time of course by visiting the website al-jazeera dot com and for further discussion just had her facebook page that's facebook dot com forward slash
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inside story you can join the conversation on twitter our handle is at a.j. inside story or slightly directly i'm not here but for now it for me and the whole team here in the heart it's the fight. well the well it's a series of ceremonies parties some feast we might know when they begin but not on the again. in the camorra sign and 6 chava get into wedding service markers of social status but this lavish celebration is unique that it would be well out of
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the no one ever held this wedding ceremony. and its budget is all still extraordinary the grand master age on algis you know wild. it is murder when you throw a fire bomb into someone's home and mishits you off trash you know. that's not in a significant and i'm sure is that insignificant ideologically that is significant even as a crime to get down very significantly by dictating the government and the fucked up policy now shalt not kill part of the radicalized youth series on al-jazeera. examining the impact of today's headlines you use the misinformation but i've used the term by setting the agenda for tomorrow's discussions how unique a load is this in terms of modern american history when it comes to racism you have
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the makings of a nail fascist mold international filmmakers and world class journalists bringing programs to inspire you. on al-jazeera. 0. kilometers of the problem and this is the news hour live from doha coming up in the next 60 minutes as foreign minister holds talks with iran's leaders while russia and china tell ted on that the u.s. assassination of custom sort of money violates international law. and other news rise up against foreign occupation wall khalifa haftar scores to libyans as turkish troops prepare to join the war.


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