tv Inside Story 2020 Ep 221 Al Jazeera August 9, 2020 10:32am-11:01am +03
the relief at the kremlin protesters in the far east of russia have rallied for the 5th consecutive weekend they're demanding the release of a regional governors go for a girl he was arrested last month and flown to moscow he denies involvement in the murders of several business men 15 years ago. former top study intelligence agents other jeffery has been given hype and protection in canada canadian media is reporting that security services learned of a new threat on his life by agents of the saudi crown prince so the filed a lawsuit in washington d.c. on thursday accusing me haven't been sold man of sending hitmen to canada in 2800 to kill him but police and private guards and are said to be protecting algebra at an undisclosed location those were the headlines and back with more news in half an hour it's inside story next here on our just their. as protests rage over police brutality and corona virus grips the nation campaigning on the election trail has been forced to take
a back seat will the presidential candidates ever hit the road and so their brand of politics to americans before the vote follow the u.s. elections on a. is the relationship between the u.s. and saudi arabia falling apart the state department shows support for a former saudi intelligence agent who says the crown prince wants him dead will president donald trump be forced to stop supporting 100 in selma this is inside story. and i welcome to the program i'm adrian said again what's reported to be a 4 year old murder plot is putting further strain on the relationship between saudi arabia and the united states a former saudi intelligence agent is suing the saudi crown prince in the u.s. saddle jobbery says that mohamed bin solomon sent the same so-called hit squad to
murder jamal to kill him in canada in a rare rebuke of the kingdom the state department praised jabbering and demanded answers about the safety of his children who went missing in saudi arabia in march it's the latest test of president donald trump staunch support for been summoned al-jazeera as mike hanna reports from washington. patrick leahy was one of 4 senators who sent a letter to the white house last month in the letter the senators express their concern about what they call the abduction in saudi arabia of sadal jobbery son and daughter. in his court filing our jobbery said his children now aged 20 and 21 were being held as what he called human bait to lure him out of hiding the state department has now responded to the senator's concerns in a letter to senator leahy it describes jobbery as a valued partner to the u.s.
government working closely with the u.s. to ensure the safety of americans and saudis it also states that any persecution of family members is unacceptable adding that it has made repeated requests to the saudi government about the status of his son and daughter. was an adviser to the previous crown prince mohammed bin nayef here but in his court filing he says he left saudi arabia because he feared what would happen if and when muhammad been summoned took over the state department says it's concerned about the alleged activities that resulted in algebra exiled to canada it says that any saudi accusations of wrongdoing against him must be and i quote address through established legal channels with full transparency and respect for the rule of law
interpol rejected the request for algebras arrest saying it was rooted in political and not criminal grounds president trampas continued to express his support for the saudi crown prince despite the repeated allegations of human rights violations describing him as an ally and friend. but increasingly this is very much at odds with the prevailing view in congress mike hanna al-jazeera washington. let's bring in our panel for today's discussion joining us from washington d.c. josh an executive director of the arab center washington d.c. here in doha job is wary the director of the gulf studies center at qatar university and from boston in the u.s. rami corey senior fellow at the is some far as institute at the american university of beirut gentlemen welcome to you all rami let's start with you is the u.s.
saudi relationship unraveling what are we to make of the state department's comments. the relationship is definitely in a serious process of transition and change after 75 years or so of pretty strong. stability in which direction it goes is going to depend on how the saudis behave and it's going to depend on how political winds in the united states change as well particularly in the congress and especially in the white house so the u.s. relationship now is very very narrow in terms of its links to the white house and particularly to cushion around trump and individually so it's a very send relationship compared to what it used to be before but it is definitely in a moment of historic change and it it could get better it could get worse depends on how people behave but chips wary here in doha what about the state department comments what do you make of that you know at the end of the day i think there was
political pressure on that whole case brought of the court by said the judge perry and that box that they cannot stay silent they have on you know you know their own . being basically be marginalized and that's from the station. it does that imply outright something and you know it does a sure. so in a kind of more pressure so i use the statement by the bombing. as just sort of how this i would be used to do something so they caught the kind of void the would which could come anytime. to what extent is the white house of the moment being forced to change tack in its dealings with the saudi arabia or even to keep quiet by congress and by public opinion in the u.s.
and elsewhere let me put it this way they're definitely the administration mr trump's administration is beginning to feel the pressure in this regard from the meat yes from human rights organizations from the congress. but i think that rush or reach the level of forcing the administration to reassess any aspect of its policies because of the saudi arabia being careful they are definitely apply some pressure on the saudis to kind of help themselves if you will where congress warning them that if they continue on this path they're going to create more opposition who are better relationships between washington and riyadh particular lead in terms of arms sales and what have you which is the core of the bilateral relationship is beginning to suffer as a result of behavior not seen as democratic or as welcome here in the united
states rami khouri what do you think is going on behind the scenes between. the white house and saudi arabia is it is it business as usual is the white house continuing to the to pursue that the policy that the. came in with president trump's arrival at the white house so do you think that now that the white house is under pressure on them to change tack on saudi arabia. and the u.s. the white house is under some pressure as he leaves said i think correctly the pressure is there but it's not enough to bring about a significant change at the trump doesn't listen much to public opinion he feels he can carry out bilateral relations using executive orders and the defense policy measures and things of that nature it's a transactional process for a trump it's not a ideological process so my guess is that they behind the scenes there are
discussions going on between the saudis and they merican but neither of them in this relationship are very good at nuanced diplomatic and political developments the problem for both of them is that the saudis are being criticized in the u.s. and public on the private very much for their internal and regional behavior it's not about the 1973 or an embargo or just a crash in our prices last year which is are there of course but their human rights records their cut their embargo their yemen war mistreating the lebanese prime minister assassinating people the latest accusations by side the shah very very powerful new elements so it they're being for the 1st time ever in a sustained way the saudis are being evaluated in public in the united states and in the congress according to their morality not just according to the amount of oil they that this is new the saudis don't know how to deal with us the saudis have
proved to be broadly incompetent at foreign policy and warfare as we see in the middle east now and this is they thought that in the past they could buy this off with the lobbyists by going to ranchers in texas with the president wasn't things like that but they can't do that anymore. not nodes not tubes wary what then is the aim of that the sound of jobbery lawsuit and its implications for saudi arabia or is it to add fuel to the fire of the shoji controversy to further discredit the crown prince both globally and in the us. i just i would. say i think this is what is becoming heading to demi and the station you know. this in particular a miss a should once you know. ok an actual can help not create prop them all to. make it so he's at the moment since 2000 the scene.
has become basically a troublemaker to die makers and the bank and has to be the man just sold an apocalypse so in this context the assassination of democracy and what's basically was you know i think the saudis miscalculated everything about the whole sort of yes you have this it would be you know it's in 24 hours nobody wants to talk on that but everything has become you know the main story until now. and that and now with the deputies of bringing more information about what else. i mean what's being said what's being alleged what's been said that's made now he's saying actually it did happen actually is putting the saudis under pressure i think even the white house that oppression is especially at the time now where what's wrong is
focusing on his company waiting for the trunk of november elections so he does not want anything to be actually snake if. he's he's valued by his you know situation inside the united states with the photo not with the story inside the not so this jeopardy story is ward. should be already there and actually putting pressure on the. saudis as that decision as well and that is that isn't why the department of state said something because they wanted to reduce the pressure on the white house in particular. to agree with that. i definitely do i would just like to ask 1st of all in terms of being of added value or not i mean this administration is on a very good relationship with the elite ruling elite in saudi arabia but they feel
somewhat pressured someone embarrassed by the fact that they are safe again a repeat of their mouth specialty i think personally that the administration realized that the saudis were involved and b s was involved in the assassination of j m l specially undercover toward him and they feel that they have been successful in protecting him and christine in this case. with some similar not quite the same but but similar kind of outlines if you will violating international law going after this overseas then to assassinate one more time i think some people in the administration became nervous the result of that fund that's why they tend to see the saudi government at this time being a nuisance as being a burden rather than a strong ally but that relationship has never been leased by american public opinion as
a long observer of the bilateral relationship i would say that the porn policy elite and riyadh inject that always so i was frustrated with the fact that the american public did not take the relationship even though it's you know 770 years plus an ancient and has worked for both sides and many ways but it has never been from a solid perspective and a bit to the level of a strategic alliance the way they which i want to come on in just a moment to what a future u.s. saudi relationship might look like. a potential president biden but for us one more question on the on the current relationship. rami khouri. a cross party bill introduced by u.s. senators this week aims to prevent president trump by passing a ban on drone sales so that he would be able to sell such equipment to nations like saudi arabia and the u.a.e. off the u.s. made weapons were found to have been used against civilians in yemen i mean what
does that tell us about the about the changing nature of the relationship between saudi of the u.s. is it more of the same that it's what we've been talking about already in terms of several important things on and i want to add a follow up book. tells us that the relationship is being adjudicated or negotiated more and more and the courts of law and in the chambers of congress whereas before it was in public relations and on t.v. which which had little little impact on american t.v. doesn't have an out of impact on saudi foreign policy but now you're dealing with congressional laws on these sort and getting a little bit more bipartisan of course trump can always veto any resolution which she will so the congressional resolution is a say is a signal that the impatience with saudi behavior is growing but the real problem the saudis have is with the shabby case with the shoe g.'s investigation the murder
of assassination officially being investigated by the u.n. human rights council with a merry serious international investigation these are instruments of the rule of law and the saudis are totally lost in the world of the rule of law so they only operate according to personal relationships and things like that and most of what the saudi leadership under come of been so man most of what they've done. has gone against internationally accepted standards of decent human behavior and trying to the rule of law whether it's behavior in yemen or qatar or assassinating people putting people in jail like. the many people who were put in the rich. alter the now you have many a woman particularly so this is the real problem every one of these incidents ratchets up the trend of taking the american style of the relationship into the chambers of congress and into the chambers of courts and the saudis are going to
lose their i just briefly want to pick up on something that he was saying no less of the what i say basically that the shift towards the law is really a problem for the saudis and they don't know how to deal with it ok last year we talked about about how the u.s. is perhaps changing its view of saudi arabia but to what extent is saudi arabia right now hedging its bets ahead of november's elections as far as its relationship with the u.s. is concerned. it's important to remind. you know that if you. so do you especially king some men and son they were actually that and trumped the situation even to the soldier we knew was that they vet that you want because basically so d.'s and obama administration.
that sucks for the station are so d. is. because of the nuclear deal. and how the so he is perceived so it's a basic need they have a major problem with the democrats and. obama to them what were nice so that's the reason why did that and. that's the reason why they try to push as much as they can so he basically acts against iran. now is biting came. into the 2020 or beginning or 2021. nights med would come back which box with more or so with more of a generalization with more international pressure with more economy quickness as would more and turn and weaknesses inside so that society so if it's
the most challenges will be. the so. how much you know the. fighting and you know oppression and reality but even having lived in the white house would be nice to the so do you agree with that i mean how would the relationship indeed u.s. middle east policy in general change under a president biden. i think it would see a lot of changes frankly my job was right the turning point. was the obama administration the deterioration of the bilateral relationship their racist tone. the attitude toward obama what's very public i'm very humiliated i was taken very seriously by the government at the time here in washington and left that date particularly of course with the
democrats now historically the relationship between the saudis and the democrats have never never been as friendly as it was with the republican side the saudis have always long as i could remember more than 40 years of focusing on this relationship the saudis have always preferred a republican in the white house mostly for defense some are say a strategic reason rather than political reasons and that point never to appreciated by the democrats but it has not all come to it due to a kind of start to clash if you will. definitely when you read between the lines in terms of the platform of the party that was recently discussed some of the statements made. by biden pfizer's donation chippers going to see some tougher days in the future should the democrats. win and november and
definitely the saudis are not helping i mean every person. right now is going to go into the elections on that time frame for once the elections are not as. intense as those russia or china or anybody else frankly it's all of these and then what are these not extremely involved and impacting trying to impact us elections in november and their preferences but it clear they would like to see. there on i'm on from 1st in the money move from extended form or use romeo if that doesn't happen if if we do have a president biden after november is there a danger that if the relationship between the u.s. and saudi cools. saudi arabia may turn towards russia or china. sony rape is already expanding its strategic and commercial and military relationships and with the talk of the russian energy relationships with the
russians the chinese and indians people all over the world so that's already happening people realize that you come along that just depend on one person particularly when i get a fickle president like trump who makes decisions based on what he saw on the rightwing newscast that morning so yes there is that possibility but they're already at trying to do that but hollin was an important one when he just slipped in there they they have it up he's with us so there's a lot of what the so these are doing is driven by hamad bin zayed the crown prince in effect of ruler of the united arab emirates and the crown princes of the emirates and saudi arabia are driven by a hysterical fear about what happened starting in 2010 and southwestern tunisia when arab citizens started demonstrating eventually people were overthrown democratic elections were held muslim brothers came to power in one of 2 places as
some had been say it is the real driving force for many of the saudi policies which are and fact criminal and nature and destructive and mostly failures so the iraqis on the saudis are not very good at policymaking now beyond their borders and internally they're becoming more repressive and tolerant and you see a parallel movement among both of them so i think this is an important thing to watch for the americans saudi arabia will always be important because it is so big it is so rich it influences other people and it provides a. fulcrum for many of their actions in the middle east the big base isn't cut out of so they don't particularly need it for military reasons but it will always be an important ally. but they've never figured out the americans have never figured out how to use allies that they think that you can get the so it isn't pakistan is another is to fight. the iranian sometimes felt iranian influence has increased in the last 20 years under american pressure so little of many wider issues than just
the bilateral relationship and. very briefly if i'm going to been a minute left here if joe biden became president do you think he would revisit the her murder and hold the crown prince publicly accountable and maybe maybe a naive question but but do you think that is part of what dr saudi fear at the moment i think there would be more i would say there would be more political pressure when it comes to. story what comes to the human rights sure comes to meet even some policies in the region to get around young men i just sort of don't you know what works but it's less and get it ok gentleman there i'm afraid we must end it we're out of time thank you all john shannon matchups a wherry and robbie cory for being on the program with us today as always thank you for watching don't forget you can see the program again at any time just by going
to the website you'll find that at al-jazeera dot com for further discussion want to join us on our facebook page that's at facebook dot com forward slash a.j. inside story and you can join the conversation on twitter we are at a.j. inside story from me adrian franken for the team here in doha thanks for being with us i'll see you michael. from fossil fuels to modern day renewable as societies develop the energy demands increase requiring innovative solutions to meet such to moms as a global power development of investment company nebraska power is uniquely positioned to deliver against these developments we provide business growth promote social economic benefits and provide innovative safe and environmentally sound energy solutions for a future generation brushed past pioneering future energy rewind returns with
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