tv [untitled] April 13, 2012 5:30pm-6:00pm EDT
i'll be a lot of show coming up and just a half hour but we'll be right back here at seven. shows that so much to me there's a huge music history of noise and find it more or less serious and you read silence at least for now at this moment the u.n. sponsored peace plan for syria has gotten mixed reviews one.
more news today violence is once again flared up. these are the images the world has been seeing from the streets of canada. showing up for a shelter today. can't . stick. to. a low in welcoming rostock i'm peter lavelle syria's eerie silence at least for now at this moment the u.n. sponsored peace plan for syria has gotten mixed reviews what happens next the u.s. nato and its regional allies are still calling for regime change while the
so-called opposition in syria is anything but united is this just another low before a more violent and deadly storm. can. start . to cross the cease fire in syria i'm joined by joshua landis in norman he is director of the center for middle east studies and associate professor of middle east studies at the university of oklahoma in columbia we have joseph omert he's an adjunct professor at the university of south carolina and in paris we have diana johnston she is an independent political commentator and author of fool's crusade yugoslavia nato and western delusions all right folks this is cross-eyed that means you can jump in anytime you want if i go to josef first and colombia we have a cease fire right now there's like i said in the introduction there's mixed reviews of it where do we go from here i mean what do we hear is this ceasefire accomplished if not just give both sides more time to arm and i'd like to point out
to our viewers that there are western capitals talking about a buffer zone right now to give the opposition their rebels if you want a place to retreat and regroup isn't that just fueling on the next stage of this civil war. well first of all the civil war ceasefire is not complete according to my information at least nine people were killed already today but i don't really believe that this ceasefire will all go for too long you know i wrote in my latest article that ignites remind us all of the cease fire the place in another country neighboring to feel a lebanon in this seven piece may not be the exact same situation but not too much different either look i believe that the situation is no real political solution for one very simple reason that there can't be any meeting point between a regime that wants to be in total complete and absolute control and opposition whether you call it so-called opposition or not but there is opposition rebels
whatever you would call them they do not accept the very legitimacy of this the dream and the main reason for their fees because of the sectarian divide between sunni muslims and all of whites and other minorities so it's just a question of time when all of these will explode maybe tomorrow in the day of prayer maybe afterwards but i don't believe that we are in any time close to the end of all this crisis no actual right josh or if i can go to you the west has chosen a side in this conflict is that a good idea and you know and i think when remind our viewers that we have iraq we have afghanistan we have libya eccentrics cetera again the west has decided to choose the side it's giving quote unquote non-lethal aid right now that's a slippery slope is this a good idea well it's quite clear that the on mission and most western governments are working across purposes. the west has made no secret of their desire to see this regime overthrown and to have a different government in syria one that would be allied with saudi arabia united
states make peace with israel for sake hizbullah hamas and iran. so that's you know that's what they're working for obviously russia and china have very different views they want to see this regime so. five they want stability in the region and a long time ally in syria to persist in in the region but i don't see i agree with the your first commentators that this is unlikely to hold for long one how do you and the head of the syrian opposition has called for big bigger demonstrations this friday the opposition sees this as an opportunity to push for a top three or square moment if the military won't shoot on them if they can demonstrate that they have the popular power the government of course wants un observers in and is hoping that they can use this to blame the opposition for creating the violence in syria but but these two sides have fundamental
disagreements that i think is reducing or more than one side here diane if i go to you in paris the joshua gave the wish list for the west and i'm looking at the title of your book a western delusions i mean is it delusional that the u.s. and its allies can get all the things the joshua just mentioned because it seems that that's it's like a fairy tale. well it's hard to know what they really want because what they have achieved in afghanistan and iraq and now in libya is pretty much chaos and yet they go on saying that they want democracy and this and that and the other. and you know some people can can really wonder if that's a delusion or whether chaos is what some people really want in order to weaken all
of the countries in the area in preparation for an attack say on iran it is so so you know you they what they say they want and how they behave really in quite serious contradiction ok just a very they're still ample evidence that assad is popular with some groups core groups in syria and that's not going to change in considering our geishas of atrocities by the quote unquote opposition or oppositions or rebels whatever you want to call them i mean we've there's the specter of ethnic cleansing on the horizon. well you have an air think problem there in syria sectarian problems no question about it i don't know how you come to the conclusion that assad is popular because obviously popular if you look at what is happening in syria you see something very simple i mean all these of course it's not simple it's terrible but the alawite area is very peaceful the truth area is very peaceful the christian
suburbs of damascus but tomorrow rather the reality for a very peaceful day in israeli area around homes here is very familiar jerry remained interim delusionary remains intact and the military remains unclear let me let me hear you about i hear about i'll tell you about the military in a minute let me just finish the point please and the smiley enclave around palms even the home sees a plotting under the pressure of the regime this is my area including salary is very peaceful that is to say the minorities they could around the region from the night in sixty's seventy's onward are still valid that can be understood there is a reason for paper and the military is divided basically what is being used now always the brute force of the alawite community by and large most of the sunni so-called units are not being used that i can give you names of divisions in all but let's not bore our own many of yours is all history to details the fact of the matter is that yes you are right the tragic conclusion of all this is that if there
will not be some kind of a transition of power from the current regime to some kind of another regime in a peaceful way which i doubt very much yes we are going to see violence in syria that will be worth anything that we have seen until now this is very unfortunate very tragic it already at it in syria in the past it happened in levanon it happened in iraq on occasions he plays very well airplane in syria and i would argue just by finishing this point all right but i mean there is also the whole point in the current situation where makes this bloody let me have. for a second i probably swats think i'm probably prolonging the current situation we make violence big give input a vanishing one time go to negative and now oh cool did you read do you was the level of violence and i can prove the place only well i don't know joshua if i could go to joshua one or maybe only a whole month i think you could make the same argument but the other side they
continued outside intervention will prolong this and make it even bloodier i mean seriously ok i said in the beginning of the program i mean you're giving nonlethal aid to these people whoever these people are they don't seem to be jeffersonian democrats to me and you're just going to make the conflict more internationalized it's going over the border right now i mean this is going down the same path that we've done for the last ten years i mean is there a learning curve here so i think you're right international adventure intervention is not likely to stop it's not likely to stop the violence. the serious problem is that it does not have a strong sense of national community the opposition is as is fragmented a minority rules we're going to see that minority fall i believe in the next several years the minorities that rule of lebanon fell the minority that ruled iraq the sunnis fell and the minority in israel and in palestine was able to make itself
into a majority of the jews but in every one of those countries the opposition are still fighting the sunnis are still fighting to get back in iraq the palestinians are still fighting for their share of palestine and the different communities in lebanon are in a very hostile sort of come to the end if you will but this for foreigners to step in and think that they can nation build in syria and create a strong sense of national unity is i think foolish we've discovered that in in in afghanistan in iraq america did not have the answers a leader of syria is going to have to emerge out of this struggle if we look at all the great nation building leaders of the middle east ataturk ben-gurion israel abdulaziz and so did in saudi arabia they spent decades fighting to unify their country its navy emerged as heroes on the battlefield they did not have the country
given to them by foreign powers ok and then point um ok this morning just let me jump in let me tell you right man that lately in the last word before we go to the break go ahead diana. well yes if the you know democracy is something that has only existed in the west for a couple hundred years we act as if it was the eternal today at the energy of of the west which it hasn't been i mean we've had kings etc etc it's about two hundred years of democracy and now our democracy shows signs of decadence in certain cases and now we want to force democracy on the rest of the world when that is a result of a product process which results in a sense of trust where everybody agrees to play by the rules because nobody's afraid of anybody else that is not the case in syria and that's not the case of a lot of the world and for us to go in saying we're going to bring democracy is total fantasy is as far as i'm concerned and it's certainly true that interference
only makes things worse that own plan is doing what they should be doing what the international community which the us tends to adopt for itself when in fact it's a minority in the world. is is doing what it should do with annan trying to mediate and to to find a more or less. peaceful solution i mean at least keep the violence down a bit and the united states is doing just the opposite leading politicians are going to be gentle and look at it we're short break and after that short break we'll continue our discussion of the cease fire in syria state. wealthy british style.
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truce in syria. ok just a bit before we move on to the international aspects of what's going on with the cease fire in syria you said you wanted to during the break you want to talk about the intervention in one form or another we had joshua and diane really dismissing it would you could you have a different position go right ahead. you know i would like to clarify what i meant i mean there are all kinds of forms to think of a nation what i'm speaking of the day stages and i'm sure to join. and i will agree with me i mean the carnage in syria should stop because you're talking about one. thousand people i mean there. than what we hear and parents of thousands. disappeared was what can happen to them if they do you know used to stop the violence. something is to be done in order to stop it because the current situation is such that it will continue endlessly and i believe that and i agree with joshua
about that is the game is going to disappear it's a method of finance or able to use and then the bloodshed could become a straw thinking cataclysmic in order to prevent that there should be some kind of a transitional situation only taught by the superpower for that matter russia should play a very significant role i would say that something can be done about that and should be done about that in the rather quickly because if not the violence will continue it anyway and then when the regime will be down then we should see a real eruption of violence that we have never seen before in the middle east ok joshua i mean i can i could come if you damned if you do damned if you don't so situation i mean what we've seen over the last few months is that you know a restart of western capitals would somebody bomb syria so i can sleep well at night it gets down to a moral issue too because we are watching violence going on in syria because we do anything to make it better if we have an outside intervention it could make it far
far worse and i think that's what the real international community out of western capitals are thinking. yes i don't think they can make it better you know america believes that it can it can somehow create nation states in this region and we haven't been able to do that and in the first month and a half after we intervened in iraq. over ten thousand iraqis were dead then the death rate went up once the regime was destroyed civil war broke out that could very well be the clip would be the case in syria yes why no foreign power wants to get involved in syria they talk but they're not doing why because once this regime falls there are fifty or fifty militias in syria will they all get along and agree on one form of government doubtful they may very well fight each other there needs to be an alternative government and an alternative force to step in once this regime falls that force is not there today if america or turkey or
saudi arabia or nato went in and bombed this regime like it did in in libya you're going to get a civil war and the death rate is going to go up not down that's what happened in iraq and that's what unfortunately is having in other places and i want to show what is that i think now it simply won't go right but it's ten thousand when i hear what is happening that i know. you know our leadership that's where you are even if you are to yours america more it goes all the more approaches it would be ok diana john jenkin go ahead but it has for murdoch a lot of zone where he has i am i just want to to mention the fact that although we're talking about syria this situation does not only. concern syria and what is happening in syria there's also the the the world there's also the fact that the united states by its very aggressive. posture the i'm talking about the administration not american people i don't think
have the same views is in fact being extremely aggressive in denying diplomacy denying the state sovereignty the sovereignty of states and is running into conflict with russia that is extremely dangerous not just for i mean you know there's others of us at stake there is there's the whole world is this crisis escalates into world war it will kill a lot more people than even exist in syria i'm sorry but you know this this is an extremely dangerous situation just and cuffy and iran is trying to calm it down and i think that the united states is very irresponsible in not really supporting my coffee and is doing because they have not been supporting it they have been saying all of the work it will work of all work and then they accept prize that it doesn't
work and they are doing everything to sabotage an international. company buys which has had some response from the syrian government they have promised reforms either you should be pushing them toward the reforms introducing all they're not going to do it they're not going to do it just to further your. diana's bring up an interesting point is what i want to bring up in this part of the program is the international effect here i'm not convinced there are many people in western capitals who care about the nature of democracy in syria or reform in syria i'm sorry i'm just not convinced of it given the past but it's about iran isn't it and it's and if they see that syria if you can get take syria down one way or another it exposes the weaknesses of iran that's a very cynical foreign policy but there's in between the lines that's what it seems like to me go ahead. well first of all it's true that if the syrian regime or other when it falls it will weaken iran it will weaken. lebanon it is already
having an effect by the way on the behavior of hamas which dropped out of the mask was out of their own will and changing to be entering gaza it is to some extent but look here is the problem with all that logic the civil war in syria didn't start to buy any kind of western instigation it's targeted by the syrian people that is to say it is not something that started by foreign instigation not their americans not the terrorists not the israelis thought say it started by the syrian people so this is a given situation now and what i said before and i will repeat it now it's not about democracy it's not about nation building you never heard these words from me i agree completely with joshua landis the can be nation building from the outside in syria what i'm saying is that if we are concerned as human beings with the level of violence in syria today what we need to do is to stop eat and the only way to stop
it right now would to be can make sure that the syrian regime understand that it cannot slaughter its own people and it can be done in a way which has not been big syria from the outside are all kinds of other scenarios and i would also say one word there is not going to be a world war north of syria with all due respect all these scare tactics and you know feel mongering italy's prime minister knows very well thank goodness you are sure to see this is what about if you really are but nonetheless a way for you in which both the u.s. and russia are ok josh when i get to go back to something you said earlier is that you know you know all of the different possibilities the outcomes here and none of the outcomes that we ever predicted in iraq afghanistan and libya accept or have ever come to fruition i mean why or are western capitals and politicians you know mccain and lieberman you know so gung ho on a place that we have very little knowledge we expert knowledge and which way you could go because we even have opposition groups committing atrocities we have
religious fundamentalists there as well i mean are these the right people we want to be supporting. well unfortunately there's a lot of domestic american politics coming into it and that's why they're taking the position that they are but but the. unfortunately syria has become internationalized it did start i agree with joseph it started as a domestic squabble and now it's become internationalized because china and russia both are looking at syria as a bridge had to iran and if the west is able to change the government in syria taking down this key shiite power in the shiite crescent that ties hizbullah through iraq to iran then iran is likely to be next and already the west has put increasingly severe sanctions on iran china gets twenty percent of its. of its energy from iran and if the price of your energy goes goes up and it loses its
investments in iran it will be a big blow for china russia as well as look to iran as a partner if russia loses syria it loses a seaport it loses a front row seat on the arab israeli conflict which was key in two thousand and eight in fighting in georgia because russia could threaten to give arms to syria and and israel which was supplying georgia with arms immediately got frightened and said ok we won't supply any more arms to georgia so russia was able to use its position in syria in order to gain a big advantage international to i does not want to lose i actually agree with a lot with your exam but i think to die and die if you will say one thing i want to bring the other one i want to bring up more and more as i have them please i want to bring up an idea before we go on is that there's international law it's stake here and you know we have western capitals that say they support international law and they have flaunted it for over a decade now when it comes to this part of the world this is another issue of the international real international community
a majority of people are looking at because this is what joshua had to say who's going to be next you know what scenario to take down another regime outside of international and i think we all need to remember that diana go ahead. well you know so i am of course i agree with that but i want to come back because this business about iran i mean. the first says that we won't have world war over syria no but we might have it over iran and you see exactly what professor landis correctly said is that this is leading toward iran and let's face it the fact is that israel and us of very powerful friends in the united states and we're pushing pushing pushing with some resistance i hope in the united states toward war with iran to protect israel and here's something i really want to say because. the defense is that the whole threat of it's been hugely exaggerated and the real reason that israel is so upset about iran was said
by efrem stay and two thousand and six and has been repeated by others that the danger isn't that iran would attack israel but the fact that if if if it is iran had nuclear weapons it might frighten israelis into leaving israel and israel would lose population and it would destroy the zionist dream personally actually with his eye on this morning it was sitting in perry's great dresser diana we know you respect it's not for your sitting are so very very feel this one it's not for you all sitting in paris telling the israelis want to be afraid of a lot when the president of your i'll say they want to look for the israelis to be carrying they want to do a little bit of so a prayer timeout. not oh ok ok you never got that in you stand on your head to go to be that i wish you would never have the bottle i want i don't think you have a little your head. missiles at israel isn't that
a little really egregious you know who you want to oh ok i know a little a little frankly another discussion let's get back to the pursuit we have secure a shit all right no hard. time with the same discussion as always we do this topic many thanks to my guest today and norman colombia and in paris and thanks to our viewers for watching us here are to be a next time and remember crossed off poles. and .
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