RAY SUAREZ: Well, what happened with Iran? You heard Jim Woolsey
allude to it a moment ago, that there was what was been seen both among our allies and American foreign policy circles a lot
of forward movement, cooperation early on in the war of Afghanistan.
CHARLES WILLIAM MAYNES: There have had several elections. There has been an evolution in public attitudes and, in fact, if
you did not have a small group of mullahs who are basically dictating to the government at any key moment that they can't
move in the direction that I think the Iranian people want to move, we would have seen a real change.
But I think that Jim trivializes the problems involved in trying
to deal with Iraq.
It's divided into three groups. You have got Kurds in the North;
you've got Shia in the South.
The Saudis are very worried that if you did attack Iraq that
the Shia would join up with Iran. The oil section of Saudi Arabia is basically Shiite; they're very worried about that section.
The Turks are worried about what kind of regime would emerge
if the Kurds in northern Iraq did get some kind of independence because they have a large Kurdish population they have been
repressing for a long time.
So, there are lots of problems here, and it seems to me many
people are calling for this invasion are like throwing a rock up the mountain and seeing -- hoping the avalanche hits the
other side but the people in the area are worried the avalanche is going to hit them. Until we have got them on our side this
is not a policy that is going to go anywhere.
RAY SUAREZ: James Woolsey.
JAMES WOOLSEY: The people in the area are sort of like small businessmen in Chicago in 1929 paying protection money to Al
Capone. If Elliott Ness and his fellow G-men had showed up in Chicago and said, "Gee, we don't know what we want to do, what
do you think, should we do anything with Al Capone," they would have heard, "oh, no, Al Capone, he's a great guy, let's not
But if it's clear that the US government is going to take action
and remove Saddam's regime, you will find a lot of support pulling behind us and the support that we need will be there.
We don't need lots and lots of allies on this. We don't need
the French, for example. If they want to criticize because they have business interests with Saddam, let them criticize.
But we do need the Turks and I think that with the Turks and
the Kuwaitis who, I believe, would be with us and the kind of air power that we demonstrated in Afghanistan, with 80 percent
smart weapons, and revolutionary change in air power, together with some indigenous forces on the ground, but perhaps several
divisions of US troops.
This might well be something that would take more US Forces
-- substantially more than Afghanistan. But I don't think it would take the 500,000 that we deployed in the Gulf War.
I think we have an excellent chance of changing the whole face
of the MidEast and removing a major threat to the United States. I don't say that this needs to happen right away or it shouldn't
be done without preparation. Of course, we should negotiate, prepare, work with the countries in the region as much as possible.
But decisiveness on America's part brings support.
RAY SUAREZ: Are we preparing for a wider war?
CHARLES WILLIAM MAYNES: I would just point out that after World War I when the British tried to reconquer many of their colonies
which had become independent or semi-independent, the one place in the world they found it hardest to reconquer was Iraq,
they found it actually impossible.
They finally imported back into the country 500 officers from
the Ottoman army who had come from Bagdhad families and they carried out the bitter repression that united the country.
Basically, you have had the same system ever since. It is extremely
unfortunately but if you want it -- if we're going to go down this road, then I think we have to redraw the map of the Middle
East. And we are I think going be talking about an independent Kurdistan, and we're going to be talking about big developments
with Iran and the Shiite population.
JAMES WOOLSEY: I completely disagree with that. We do not want to have an independent Kurdistan. I think we can guarantee
to the Turks that there would not be; that's an important feature, and I think Bill is quite wrong about the Shia in southern
Iraq wanting to join a Iran.
I don't think that would occur and most of the scholars I know
who are experts in the area, such as Bernard Lewis and Fouad Ajami do not believe that would happen either.
CHARLES WILLIAM MAYNES: The head of intelligence of the Saudi
government believe it's would take place.
JAMES WOOLSEY: Special pleaders!
RAY SUAREZ: Charles William Maynes, James Woolsey, thank you
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