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tv   Inside Story 2018 Ep 89  Al Jazeera  March 30, 2018 8:32pm-9:00pm +03

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on wednesday the syrian government issued a three day ultimatum to get or face an all out offensive. u.s. president donald trump says he may hold off on knowing a trade deal with south korea to win agreements reached with north korea and do clear eyes ation made the comment just a day after reaching the camara still it's the south korean limiting still exports to the u.s. . russia's drawing of diplomats from twenty three countries is the right tools of the poisoning of a former spy in britain the move is in retaliation for the wave of expulsions of russian officials after what the u.k. and its allies say was a nerve agent attack on surrogates scottish power and his daughter. judges in senegal have sentenced a major off position figure to five years in jail for embezzlement cully sols also the mayor of dakar he was arrested again our goal accused of misappropriating farms
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worth two point eight billion dollars critics say the case was to eliminate president macky cells strongest rival before elections in twenty nineteen. facebook's facing more scrutiny after a memo surface claiming the company should prioritize giving more users even if it meant people could die as a result of bullying or terrorism buzz feed news reports the note was written by facebook vice president andrew balls worth twenty sixty both he and c.e.o. mark zuckerberg say they don't believe the message you were up to date inside stories next. we're not get the hell out of isis will become a serial like very soon let the other people take care of it now. while those
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donald trump surprise announcement mean for the war in syria and will it strengthen the position of all the parties to the conflict this is inside story. hello and welcome to the show i'm sammy's day than donald trump has declared the u.s. soldiers are coming home from syria very soon e says the president's promises taken many by surprise including saw his right hand man and the important details he left out is led many to question whether he's serious the u.s. defense secretary james mattis and former secretary of state rex tillerson repeatedly said american troops will remain in syria to prevent the resurgence of eisel trungpa said he doesn't like to advertise or telegraph his military
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strategies specially with syria because it will tip off the enemy here is his latest message and by the way we're not get the hell out of isis will become a serial like very soon let the other people take care of it now very soon very soon to come and we're going to have a hundred percent of the caliphate as they call it sometimes referred to as the land take it all back quickly quickly both the pentagon and the state department were seemingly unaware of trump's plan to pull out of syria i can't comment on what the. i supposedly said i haven't seen and i have to refer you back to the white house that i have not seen it myself and said it i have not seen that myself ok but you know you don't you don't necessarily comment or report on things that have been heard secondhand and i'm not going to do that that's ok that's fine so you're not aware of any policy determination to poor to pull the us out of so i'm not now ok so that's where the president is just speaking off the cuff and i don't know i don't know what here are you back in the white house i'm not and i'm not aware it's
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not just the so just how extensive has the us involvement been in syria or the us has spent billions of dollars training and arming syrian rebels and the start of the uprising in two thousand and eleven some weapons ended up in the hands of isis before the us shifted its emphasis four years ago the us started backing kurdish forces with air strikes and covert operations to reinforce the fight against i saw the pentagon says around two thousand u.s. soldiers are deployed in syria to prevent an eyesore resurgence but the u.s. is just one combatant in a complex proxy war washington has worked alongside saudi arabia qatar and israel against the syrian government the main reason is to curb iran which along with russia is heavily backing president bashar assad turkey opposed the syrian government but maintains relations with both russia and iran turkey's main aim is to defeat kurdish forces which the u.s.
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has supported in the fight against i saw. let's bring in our panel we have here in doha marwan cover line is director of policy analysis at the arab center for research and policy and alice's from washington d.c. mark kimmitt former assistant secretary for political move three affairs under george w. bush and from moscow dmitry babich political analyst at the state owned voice of russia good to have you all with also start here in the studio with a bit of a surprise this announcement because in fact i've been observing and. so the english foreign policy for many years now i haven't seen something like this before . it's confusion it's an arche and after the defeat the arson has been defeated we all thought that the u.s. is now having a strategy for syria in place we have held official did say that they want u.s. troops to be there for a while this date so and so what's it like how do you read this is this i mean i mean december we all know that there was
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a meeting for the national security council of of the thumb administration and there was this agreement that the u.s. would keep its troops in eastern bought of syria after the defeat of ice and then we had an excellent son the the former secretary of state talking about this and of the hope for institute to stanford university when he said that we are not going to be the mistakes that we did in iraq you are not going to defeat isis and then pull out leaving this part of the of the ward once again giving on a silver plate to that to the iranians and and he said that we also will be using our military presence in syria in order to put pressure on the syrian regime in order to have a political solution we need also to free syria of all weapons of mass destructions we need to make sure that al qaida and i said will not be revived and will not actually attack u.s. interests and its allies in the region such as our resident right where he listed a whole bunch of goals but of course secretary of state for missouri state rex
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tillerson is no longer very now is easier and in the southeast is dumb and also it's not only tennis and the who was fired seems to be but also the study a little as a strategy is not we are not having started let's get the perspective of mark kimmitt you've worked of course with u.s. administrations marc is this an off the cuff remark by donald trump as you read it or is this a carefully thought out policy well i think it is an off the cuff statement i think what we're hearing is candidate trump speaking as you remember during the two thousand and sixteen election campaign he was very very direct about pulling the united states out of the middle east so we're now starting to hear some of the. that. are again i would note that he in fact is very close to congress on this issue because the authorization for the use of military force inside syria was limited simply to the defeat of isis in fact the view as was expressed by sector tillerson another was a bit more expansive than the authorization that congress had permitted nonetheless
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i agree with you it was a bit off the cuff i think we're going to have to see in the days and weeks to come whether that remark was truly off the cuff or whether that announces a new policy but what do you think will u.s. generals be saying today for as an adult after this apparent off the cuff remark. well first and foremost they're going to say isis is not defeated inside of syria there are still a large concentration of isis personnel operating outside of there is or the fact that the y.p. g. has pulled away from that fight and it's now fighting turkey rather than isis has given an opportunity for isis to go back on the offensive so regardless of whether it is upon the defeat of isis or later than that it will be some period of time before we've met the conditions inside syria for withdrawal or let's go to dmitri
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babich in moscow iran and russia do you think they will save an opportunity in this to increase their influence. well i don't know about the iran russia's. presence in syria is not the most able to influence it's a bollard preserve and stability you know not go in as you go government to be told pulled by foreign also forces and the bog to fight in the dentist's if you will notice your mind. you might have noticed that brush for example basically they sit there quiet to the turkish presence in the north of syria because we understand that during because the gentleman security interests there by russia did how the syrian government to defeat the groups like jason was robbed or jump on down the street simply because these groups are dangerous. and of course you know but for
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other countries also including russia but also to be sure you'd agree that the russians don't deploy their forces everywhere in the world to defend what they see is the gypsum and governments there is a very strong interest for russia there in syria are they not likely to try and seize on an opportunity or vacuum left by withdrawing u.s. role i don't think that these while even. the country that they invaded is even vacuum the united states in their own lives by their support for the rebellion in syria have created a disastrous situation there what they want to know uprising there to help the uprising against the regime that you call a legitimate one in two thousand and eleven. well there is there popular legend in the way that in the beginning it was all nice by police turned violent it was violent from the very beginning and. just my mixtape would not appear from nowhere in two thousand and thirteen two years before russia gotten involved in syria
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didn't really mind you that russia gotten involved in two thousand and fifteen in september so their pricing was violent and shouldn't be illegal from the very beginning to unfortunately probably the very beginning it was supported by the western powers by turkey by saudi arabia a lot of foreign countries oh no marwan is going to want to come back in on a number of those characterizations violent turn illegal uprising i guess i think that i think this i mean this has been. the view of the russian government from the very beginning of the not only of the syrian revolution but of the arab spring because the russian elite the russians willingly is in fact very suspicious of all sorts of illusions we have seen that to do in the color evolutions in ukraine in georgia and but he's how he's done and we have seen the also getting data that evolutions of the arab spring so this is not that there's
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a general russian narrative that there is no i mean then i literally got out a lot of colleague archaeal actually sees the that that evolution's are very much being chaos and instability and they want actually to keep these masses and that under control but i think if we go back to that to the question of the of of the announcement about the withdrawal of there was forceful again he's talking about letting others take care of syria now who are those others do you think and i think he means here to the russians maybe and the turks but that the what the what they want and they do it and what will kind of syria i may put michelle i'm sure the russians would welcome that very much the iranians would also welcome that because we are what we are seeing right now is that a bit titian of the iraqis see an audio where the united states good. in the remove an enemy of iran and then actually just give give the area back to that to the iranians and i mean this is how i see it because the the declared object of the us administration was actually to deny iran acquitted or land that would connect iran
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through iraq syria and to lebanon and then we did in you know when the us pull out right now from is sincere and you think it's going to harm the iranians i mean this is what i what i believe and also here i think the pull out of the u.s. troops from syria will just spirit the conflict between the different vision and bars in this case we will see more until eventually by the turks in this case we will see that you're on you know that maybe we still need to see how the russian policy on this would be evolving between the iranians because we saw in if mean when the russian when the turks actually intervened in your freeing the iranians were very much against the turkish until eventually i was the russians actually were backing that intervention by turkey and how that is going to evolve between that and if i would like i was it's a question before we go let's take out one of the points you mentioned take it back to mark is this going to end up in a repeat of the sort of iraq scenario mach where the u.s. perhaps hasn't really thought out the implications of its policy and ends up
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handing more influence rather than less to regional competitors or international competitors like iran and russia well again i think we need to first go back and recognize that we are building an entire show around a one sentence comment by the president of the united states i would suspect that there will be some deliberations the very points that you're bringing up well. there will be no you are clearly wrong policies announce eventually they'll be united states which are all there is certainly no one that would intend a permanent stationing of troops inside of syria but do you i mean do in visit how then do you interpret. president trump statement that we're getting out of syria very soon i used to. jesting that perhaps others maybe in the defense department state department will ensure that that doesn't happen very soon well at the end of the day the president is the one who makes the decisions but there will certainly be an opportunity for the department of defense to make their views known the secretary of state's people at the state department's people the intelligence
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community as well they will put in front of the president clearly the options that are available. regarding his comment yesterday there's an old saying in this town you can either take the president's comments literally or seriously you can't do both so let's wait and see whether that off the cuff statement turns into a new policy. to my question though do you think it will turn into a real policy. well we'll see if the department of defense is able to explain the implications and the costs of a premature withdrawal the way we did a premature withdrawal inside of iraq. the president may make his mind up differently however the president could also say well that's fine we have spent seven trillion dollars in that region and we've got nothing for it let's let others
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take on that responsibility that is a very very different policy statement though that is saying that the united states' presence in that region which we have been since one thousand nine hundred forty five plus is going to take a different character and shape under president trump than it has under all the presidents preceeding him that's a different story and if this is the first example of that overall u.s. withdrawal from the region i think that's a very very different issue that we should be discussing dmitri perhaps u.s. policy would be fair to say is not entirely clear when it comes to syria there are some mixed signals and whether you listen to the white house all some statements that have come out of the state department though or department of defense where does all of this mixed us signaling leave policymaking in places like moscow. of the night just days. rather predictable country so i have to admit that
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it's read it difficult on the stand who decides what in washington after the election of the unexpected action of president trump he is the enemy is the globalists the ultra liberals they have damaged the institution of presidency we have seen mr trump being unable even to meet the president which of for a year we have seen a lot of his initiatives blocked by various means so i don't believe that the united states is withdraw. and from iraq story from from syria and what we have heard that mr drum in trusting in all the powers in the region is to his generals quite norgaard so demitri you expect that the transition will be thwarted by his generals is that what you're saying. not only by his generals but generally of by the idea what would that prevails there in that the states and that i go with just says that the united states should use you regime change everywhere where it once
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in the walk and it should never get out of its victims over the coals so that the line i think you know a powerful force in the know this days simply won't allow trump to withdraw the troops even if he wants to as far as for that arab spring is a construct i think it's important to have to get into the whole of the arab spring can i can i get a chance to touch on the arab spring in a second by so mark kimmitt there thank you is head in disagreement we cannot just give you a brief opportunity to come back in before we go back to dmitri go ahead mark well sure i mean i certainly understand why it's hard to understand in moscow what you would see as confusion we call that policy deliberation in moscow of course only one person makes the decisions for everybody and that's president putin that's a quasi dictatorship that the united states still believes in policy deliberation
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and we will eventually make a decision on quite a lot of you have not usually but on the military like this where you have james mattis or other officials you know signaling that along on a longer term stay for u.s. troops to defeat eisel and then the u.s. president comes out and doesn't the parent public one eighty on that is a little more shall we say inconsistent compared to what one is used to from previous administrations is it not and you've worked with some. at no absolutely not i think it is i think you're absolutely correct i'm not comparing it to previous administrations i'm comparing it to the comments coming out of moscow. where they are so used to one person making the decisions and then that person directing people to get on the t.v. and pronounces the. asians that's a different model than the united states right or let's give dimitri a chance to come back and know you wanted to say something about the arab spring go ahead dimitri well for us they wanted to see that according to the u.s.
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constitution just but according to the russian constitution it's the president who determines the foreign policy so if situation when a president says something but it doesn't mean much and his generals do adult a different thing this is not democracy this is simply a rule or one ideology very believed her and radical way your with your now ruling and the united states and the you in russia there is a lot of discussion about this syrian border issue top of the presidential candidates at the recent election where for pulling out of syria there was the election in although people called the board for them talking about the arab spring and i don't know why one of the previous speaker said something about russian oligarchs been appreciate show me a country that became thanks to the arab spring egypt did not become syria did not become k.p. so the border sure if you change which in the arab war. against the counter i mean
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that was they were very happy before the arab spring under what many people perceived as dictation let's give marwan a chance and i can see you want to feel i think that is why they rebelled it's exactly because of this clash of interests and the clash of values between the russians and the americans most people are paying the heavy price the heaviest price in the in the region i mean syria is one example and back to the question of the arab spring i don't see that i mean of course i mean that and and distribution of wealth inside these societies and because of this foreign intervention i think we are in syria and in many other places in the region i mean there is you know in the states you cannot get the interest of course let's move forward let's look at you know it sounded like donald trump was saying we're going to bring the troops back home the. around an estimate i think two thousand u.s. soldiers in syria i mean what would their departure would it make a big difference to the balance of power on the battlefield huge difference. in
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which runs because there are many battles it's not one war any of the marines presence of the u.s. troops on the ground in the east and the east of the euphrates in syria actually is not allowing the russians and the iranians to to actually control this area and we have seen the americans actually just. a few weeks ago the u.s. air force hit at. back to a convoy that was heading towards the eastern part of the euphrates and they think that was a very important signal by the americans that we were not allowed that he jeems the russians and the iranians actually to cause that ever so i think the absence of the americans right now is giving that signals to these powers that variations on the iranians that this land i mean there is no real force actually to defend it and hence i mean you can take it back to under control of the of the regime but that will in on the other hand this is what i tried to mention earlier that will actually encourage or for the turks to to enter the following going to my question
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because there's another battle going on isn't there between the turks and the kurds and the u.s. plays own porton role in backing those kurdish forces the s.t.l. this is another question actually does this mean that the americans are actually just abandoning their allies after the end of the of the war against isis this is one question the other question is that how the russians will be actually balancing their interests between the between the turks and the iranians because here in the is somebody of the euphrates if the americans evacuated the region we will be seeing this conflict between the russia between the iranians and the turks and the russians will be how that will administer that conflict is something still to be seen let me go to mark in washington d.c. i know that you're being very cautious any of got those sort of let's. wait and see what it means would you agree though that a lot of the battle ground in the east of the euphrates could change old there's a lot here shall we say at stake in terms of how this announcement is interpreted
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yeah i think marwan is exactly right if the united states was to pull out not only its ground component but its air component east of the euphrates that would significantly change the balance of power in that area i don't think the russians and the iranians are ready to go into that area with the syrian troops i would expect that the major party that would try to take that area would be the turks the turks have a longstanding concern about the kurds expanding their. quads so i republican out to the mediterranean i think the turks would do everything they could in their power to ensure that doesn't happen but it as more one says it will take on a completely different character of the united states and its coalition allies moved out of that area to the east of the euphrates and they're replaced by turkish troops or i think we've got about one minute left i want to give it to dmitri dmitri how about let's not forget to talk about the diplomatic process. does this
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announcement by the u.s. president have any bearing on the influence of the role that the u.s. will appetite the u.s. might have when it comes to the diplomatic process does that give russia any more of an opportunity than it already has. well i mean right now the. russian foreign minister said you know our office meeting un representative stop on de mistura on continuing negotiations enough about the settlement in syria you asked me whether our show wanted more influence there no we have never been used over there your friends said they were we don't want to be there what we want is to help the syrians themselves meeting in us you know the former soviet union or in sort you or in geneva let them meet and decide how they want to build their country and let me remind you that in two thousand and twelve russia was the main war biggest for negotiations in geneva at the time the west me and the united states
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and they were very skeptical about talks in geneva they expected the president of bashar al assad to fall right so ok what we have these negotiations all right mother raised excess for one day let's hope they will be successful let's thank our guests on this show a modern one couple on here in the studio mark kimmitt and dimitri babich and thank you to fortune you can see the show again any time by visiting our website al-jazeera dot com for further discussion head over to our facebook page at facebook dot com forward slash a.j. inside story can also join the conversation on twitter i have various at a.j. inside story from me sam is a that and the whole team here for now by. what
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makes this moment this era we're living through so unique all this is really an attack on truth itself is a lot of misunderstanding the distortion is one of what free speech is supposed to be about the context is hugely important. to publish it out to get you to be offensive overall it's all about it as people do setting the stage for a serious debate up front at this time on al-jazeera. april on al-jazeera from the stories beyond the headlines followed lines examines
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the us his role in the world's fifty years since the death of martin luther king we examine the impact of his assassination and the state of race relations in the u.s. today the award winning show earthrise returns for another season with stories about solutions to some of the greatest manmade environmental problems as the first meeting since the friends it vote is set to take place in the u.k. we examine how relevant the commonwealth is today between corporate and public interests up to the last drop unveils the longstanding rule for water in europe april on al-jazeera.

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