tv [untitled] CSPAN July 1, 2009 11:00am-11:30am EDT
please introduce yourself and ask a question. wait for the microphone, please. we're going to start any minute. >> thank you. thank you for this great presentation and great panel. i'm from georgia and an associated with the jamestown foundation. i have a question regarding energy. you talked about other issues, mostly nuclear issues and defense and the negotiations, but energy is kind of missing from the discussion. in this regard, the alternative for the caucusesus.
the follow-up question related to this one, are you participating in any war against georgia? >> let's go to moscow first. the energy part, the energy part will go to the economist. and the question on georgia will go to yevgeny volk. let's keep our answers short. do you want to start about the energy corridor, please? >> we cannot hear the energy part of the question. please repeat it. >> the questionnair said what du think about the future of the southern corridor, through georgia, as an energy route
that by passes russia? related to that, how old do you see a chance of another conflict between russia and georgia? >> rocha of course is going to do its best to avoid and not allow any energy deliveries except through russia. i don't think there's anyone strong enough to counter this. i'm not a champion of russian geopolitics. the and pluralistic approach. but i have to admit that for the time being russia is strong enough to fight and the nobuko pipeline, there is no gas to fill.
[unintelligible] as to the corridor through georgia, i hope so. >> the situation in the caucasus mountains remains very tense. politically and militarily. the problem is that saakashvili, the president of georgia, is an enemy of the russian elite. russia does everything to try to remove him from power. i believe that the massive opposition movement, which was active some months ago, it was a signal to shock as dealsaakashvt russia wants to change the regime in georgia. the problem is that the escalation, the political and
military escalation as a phenomenon has its own laws, its own norms which sometimes go out of control of those who started the escalations. an accidental shot or provocation during these caucuses in exercises, some kind of tension, explosion, a terrorist attack, can really encourage both sides to use military force at a large scale. they can provoke a larger war. >> can you just explain to the audience here what exercises you're talking about? when are they taking place? and what are the scope of them? >> yesterday russian forces in the caucuses started a large scale exercise called caucuses
2009, which is participation of some 8000 military men, 250 naval ships from the black sea fleet participating as well as numerous aircraft. so it is a very impressive demonstration of force across the jordan borders -- close to jordan borders. this event is taking place on the eve of obama's visit to moscow. it can happen, theoretically, although the exercises on monday, july 6. still it can happen, tension can rise through these exercises. that will cast a shadow on the russian-american relations when
obama goes to moscow. it can really be a threat to the success of these negotiations. as such. >> thank you. let's check if there's another question from moscow. is there a question in moscow? >> it was indirectly mentioned in the mass media. [unintelligible] it's not about obama. my question is what would happen if moscow becomes barack obama's frustration? >> what would happen in moscow
that would disappoint or frustrate the american president during the visit? baker, do you want to take a crack at this one briefly and then go to fritzl >> the only thing i could imagine would be if the russian side of the negotiations did not put forward a list of things they would want the u.s. to go along with, because i think that basically the obama administration has been in a very accommodating mood with regard to that. but it is clear that the russian side at the end of the day is really not that interested in significant nuclear weapons reduction. essentially, it puts forward a list of items that the obama administration continues to pursue with no finality. in other words, these things
continue to be stretched out. i think that from the perspective of this administration, that they would be disappointed in that. >> for i don't know what would frustrate the president, because i don't know what he really wants in his heart of hearts. i have a little better idea what the administration has asked for. i can identify write off what would give him a lot of trouble. first, there is the demand from the russians that there will be no arms control agreement the situation goes forward in poland and the czech republic.
some in the obama administration don't do those deployments anyway. that could include the president, himself. but i think that would be politically and strategically a very costly concession. which, i would strongly urge him not to do. if he's put in a situation where no arms control agreement happens with those deployments, he will recognize that he will have serious political trouble if he makes this concession. he will work really hard to find a technical, strategic rationale for making it without making that concession to the soviet union. that is a sow's of trouble. another big source of trouble for him will be russian assistance on some recognition of the severe privileged interest, to use his language.
i have read in the press that in some way the obama administration has signaled to the russians that the u.s. just does not accept that. frankly, i don't know where that was stated. >> the administration is trying to send a signal by sending vice president biden right, a week after this visit of the ukraine to georgia. i don't know what people say there. if there's any continuity, he will say pretty much what you just said, that we don't recognize russia playing for exclusive interest. let me make a broader point year. we're trying to put it into context and perspective. if barack obama went to the iranians and said, if you unclench your fist, we will stretched our hand out. he went to cairo and spoke to
the sony world and said we don't have problems with islam, which is true. -- the sunni world. but we do oppose radicalism and tourism. the question is, where is the reciprocity? he stretches his arms and the arm is not met and shaken in moscow in peace, that will be a very disappointing thing, because then the question will rise about the efficacy of the stretched hand. some people will interpret that as being a bit naive or full of good intentions but not realistic enough. there is a discussion about realism in front policy. you were there. you remember that.
realism -- >> realism is one of the most abused terms of political discourse. almost as out of place as "reset." >> realism is not about being a well wishing, naive, a beazppea. i'm not saying obama is, but he needs a real achievement for people to support him. >> i also think there was always in inevitability that the obama administration approach on this was right on. he's been on a nonstop apologetic toward around the world with regard to the past u.s. policies and behaviors. that was fine for him as long as they were always looking back at previous policies taken by the united states. it comes forward with the
repression in iran following the election. at some stage if he's going to continue this, he will start to have to blame themselves. obviously, that will be a nonstarter. i think at the end of the day this policy that was based on the idea that it was always u.s. provocations that caused problems in the world, cannot be sustained for long time. >> i've been in too many talking shops were that approach was sometimes to my surprise by former senior officials of the reagan administration. of give you the names later. but the gentleman blamed the u.s. for all of our troubles in relationships with russia. i will take a question from washington. introduce yourself, please. >> dmitry is my name.
the first question is related to iran. as far as i've understand, president obama will have a concession on iran with the discretion of a colleague. based on my information, some people within this administration think that russia has influence in the world and may convince iran to increase its nuclear progress or maybe allow inspectors in their. what do you think about that? the second question is about human rights. it was announced that obama will meet with the leaders of the human rights organization in moscow. how serious do you think will be his attempt to raise the question about lebanon?
and what kind of response do you think will come from the russians on that? >> did moscow hear the questions? the first question was -- >> [speaking in russian] >> does obama have enough influence with the iranians? enough influence to cause turan to freeze the nuclear program and allow inspections both the second question is about the meeting with the leaders of human rights organizations in russia and whether barack obama is going to raise the issue of the jailed oligarch who is now on his second trial? i will start the answers with washington and then go to moscow. do you have an opinion on iran? >> the russians probably have
some influence, not comprehensive, though, over iran. we have done extensive gauging of this situation under a multi poehler gaming exercise that we have designed. the problem is there's a consistent pattern on the part of the individuals that have been playing the russian equivalent players in this bill for it environment to actually exacerbate the non- proliferation or the proliferation problem, more precisely. that is the russian players have found it's to their advantage to try to use new nuclear power as effectively as arrogant for confronting the u.s. and the west. and there's not much of the real world that shows me the opposite of what we're seeing in the gaming exercises. if russia were to exercise its influence, it could no, but not,
principally. there's not much incentive for them to do it, based on what we have seen in the virtual environment as well as in the real-world experience. >> i agree with that perspective. when you get down to it, yevgeny put his finger on it when he spoke of the russian elite. i fully agree with the truth of what he is saying there. it is so much more polite for a russian to say it that an american. that outlook says what yiron is doing on nuclear weapons and terrorism is much more trouble for the u.s. than it is for russia. however, russia is a land of
chess players, as is iran. they can do a net assessment of who gets hurt most by the trouble. then they ask, what should we do? the most they can offer is support in the international community for sanctions. they could do some more concrete things. >> some of the sanctions can be very effective, like cutting the imports of gasoline into iran, where the iranian population will blame the ayatollah. >> if you want are backing for stuff that really matters, what are you going to pay, is what the russians will last? >> any opinion on the human rights? >> nott specific to that, although it will come up during the summit. what i fear is that obama will find himself, giving his
background, his agenda, his belief that we can glad hand our way back to better relations, he is going to find himself communicating implicitly, if not explicitly, some hard-line folks over the years did, and that is, look, dmitri medvedev, i have to complain about that man in jail, because ofmuch political arena takes that seriously, but i'm not personally that concerned about it. hard-headed likeguys like in the kissinger and nixon found themselves in that situation. another hard-headed i handled it very differently and very convincingly, that was ronald reagan. >> moscow, iran and human rights
and law. please, if you can do it in 30 seconds, because we need to go to the next one. >> i will tell you about iran and the gentlemen. i went to the proceedings with the gentleman, but there were some journalists, some wearing ski masks. those interested in this, you can visit in moscow. it would seem to you ridiculous. these proceedings have nothing to do with any law. and i would like to see any russian lawyers who follow these proceedings, not be shocked by
what is going on in our country. some were -- the woman was released during the half year after the meeting started. it was not just because of george w. bush insisting on it, but because 100,000 signatures were taken around russia for her release on parole. i think that nothing will be done and nothing will change even if any promises are given to barack obama in his meeting in moscow. because president medvedev says that is the prerogative of the court. and he does not want to or does not want that destruction.
>> the audio is not good. please repeat that? >> when i hear about the allusions that russia can help stop iranian military nuclear programs, i recall ronald reagan speaking about the role of the government. he said the government is not the solution, it is a part of the problem. russia is not the solution to iran. russia is a part of the problem. in fact, there are many influential people in russia who are in favor of the iranian nuclear program. because it seems a good factor in containing american and israeli influence in the middle east, and increasing russian club in central asia. i believe it's a myopic view. in the long term russia will
suffer from iranian threats, because iranian nuclear program will encourage moscow's fundamentalism and extremism in central asia. but many people, including many decision makers, ignore these objective realities. the second thing to why russia is not an ally in stopping iranian nuclear programs is because russian nuclear industrial complex is very interested in maintaining and developing nuclear cooperation with iran because it is lucrative and beneficial, which brings enormous profits, provides employment for the thousands of people. otherwise there would be unemployed. so the way russia behaved in security council when it was reluctant to go to introduce
resolute sanctions against ira n, shows russia is not going to be an active player in cooperating to stop the iranian nuclear program. as for the gentleeman, it's important obama deal with this problem in this conversation with russian leaders, just as all previous american presidents including ronald reagan dealt with the issues of human rights and dissidents in the soviet union. also, the brezhnev position with andropov, they said, no, we have soviet courts that will decide. still americans interfered. american influence was instrumental in letting free such important figures of many
who are now prominent figures in the west. so i believe the issue of human rights is a must for obama for his negotiations in moscow. >> thank you. i will say, we lost a rule of law and rights working group with prominent lawyers, one of foam will speak in the second panel today. we, also, drafted a memo that went to american decision makers on the issues of the rule of law if it is unnecessary issued to develop u.s.-russia business relations. it's in the interest of russian entrepreneurs in the russian economic growth and of u.s.- russian business relations. president medvedev and an economic forum that i attended said business relations between the u.s. and russia are
important in volume and structure. we noticed conflicts in the resolution, requesting or advising president obama to raise the issue of the man in prison, in his summit. both the senate and the congress resolution are now in play on the floor. with that, i have to bring this very interesting panel to conclusion. thanks to baker and fritz and give jenny and the wonderful lady in moscow there with him. and for those here who put our program together. take about. a 10 minutes to break and we go to the second panel. thank you.
>> we will continue live coverage of this forum, previewing president obama's summit next week with russian president dmitry medvedev. when it returns after the 10 minute break. later today president obama will hold a town hall style meeting on health care. he will take questions from the audience and some online sites like youtube, facebook, and to order. live coverage from northern virginia community college at 1:15 eastern on c-span. until the gavel back in for the second session, at the heritage foundation, we will get headlines from this morning's "washington journal." host: this article in "vanity fair" on sarah palin is getting a lot of attention.
the author begins by taking us to a 11th in indiana. -- to an event in indiana. the writing of this article goes on to say that michael steele introduces the special guest speaker as "the storm that is the hon. governor of the great state of alaska, sarah palin." he goes on to write that just for the storm is heading is one of the most intriguing issues. sarah palin was at once the sexiest and the riskiest brand in the republican party.