Exclusive - Hamid Al-Bayati Extended Interview Pt. 1

  • Aired:  06/19/14
  •  | Views: 35,505

Former Permanent Representative of Iraq to the United Nations Hamid Al-Bayati describes the political crisis emerging in Iraq. (6:37)

[CHEERING AND APPLAUSE]>> Jon: WELCOME BACK, MY GUEST

TONIGHT WAS THE PERMANENTREPRESENTATIVE OF

IRAQ TO THE UNITED NATIONS FROM2006 UNTIL 2013.

PLEASE WELCOME HAMID AL-BAYATI.

SIR.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

WELL, WELL, THANK YOU MUCH FORJOINING US.

WE VERY MUCH APPRECIATE YOUBEING HERE BECAUSE ON AMERICAN

TELEVISION, THERE ARE A LOT OFTALKING HEADS SAYING, "WHAT'S

GOING ON IN IRAQ?"BUT WE DON'T... BOY, I DON'T

KNOW HOW TO PUT THIS, KNOW THATMUCH ABOUT IT.

[LAUGHTER]YOU PERHAPS MIGHT KNOW MORE.

SO WHAT HAPPENED?

WHAT'S GOING ON THERE RIGHT NOW?

>> JON, DEFINITELY I KNOW MORETHAN MOST OF THE AMERICANS.

[LAUGHTER]>> Jon: KIND OF GOES WITHOUT

SAYING.

I FIGURED THAT.

ALL RIGHT.

SO HIT ME. HIT ME.

WHAT, WHAT HAPPENED?

>> THE IRAQ I WAS BORN IN ANDGROWN UP IN IS AN IRAQ OF UNITY.

PEOPLE, THE MAJORITY OF PEOPLELOVE TO LIVE IN PEACE AND

HARMONY. MUSLIMS, CHRISTIANS,JEWS, THEY LIVED FOR CENTURIES.

HOWEVER, THERE ARE MINORITIES,FAR EXTREMISTS, AND

UNFORTUNATELY THEY MAKE HIGHNOISES, LOUDER NOISES,

AND THE MEDIA PICK UP THESENOISES AND MAKE IT BIGGER.

NOW, THERE'S A FACTION SPILLOVER FROM INSTABILITY IN SYRIA.

ISIS IS AL QAEDA IN IRAQ INSYRIA IN THE BEGINNING.

THEN AL QAEDA CONSIDERED THEMTOO EXTREME AND THEY --

>> Jon: AL QAEDA CONSIDERS THISISIS GROUP...

>> TOO EXTREME FOR THEM.

IMAGINE, YOU KNOW?

>> Jon: SO AL QAEDA, THE GROUPRESPONSIBLE FOR 9/11, THEY SEE

THESE GUYS AND THEY GO, NO, ICAN'T WORK WITH THEM.

[LAUGHTER]>> EXACTLY.

THEY'RE TOO MUCH.>> Jon: ALRIGHT.

>> SO NOW WE ARE FACING THISGROUP WHO ARE BRUTAL.

THE UNITED NATIONS REPORTS THATTHEY ARE COMMITTING WAR CRIMES.

THEY EXECUTE THOUSANDS OFPEOPLE, INCLUDING CIVILIANS,

>> Jon: RIGHT.>> IN MOSUL AND OTHER AREAS.

>> Jon: SO LET ME ASK YOU, SOTHE REPORTS THAT WE GET IS,

SO WE LEAVE IRAQ.

EVERYBODY SAYS IRAQ IS READY.

WE'RE GOING TO TAKE OVER THEGOVERNANCE AND SECURITY OF THIS

NATION.

YOU WERE THERE DURING THAT TIME.

YOU FELT GOOD ABOUT THATARRANGEMENT.

EVERYBODY FELT GOOD.

THESE GUYS ROLL IN, AND THEIRAQI ARMY SEEMS TO DISPERSE,

AND THEY TAKE OVER THIS AREA INMOSUL.

AND THE LOCAL PEOPLE, BECAUSE ITSEEMS LIKE THEY'VE NOW JOINED UP

WITH THE ORIGINAL BA'ATHISTSFROM SADDAM'S OLD GROUP, AND

THEY SEEM TO BE ALIVE NOW.

IS THAT WHAT HAPPENED?

>> YES, IT'S NOT ONLY ISIS.

ISIS IS 5,000 TO 6,000PERSONNEL.

>> Jon: 5,000 TO 6,000.

>> ONLY, ONLY.

>> Jon: SERIOUSLY, THAT'S IT?

>> THE HIGHEST ESTIMATION IS10,000, HOWEVER, THE BA'ATH

PARTY IS HEADED OR LED BY IZZATAL-DOURI WHO WAS VICE PRESIDENT

FOR SADDAM. THE INSURGENCY GROUPLIKE NAQSHABANDI GROUP

AND OTHER GROUPS ARE JOINING.

>> Jon: SO THIS IS SIMILAR TOWHAT HAD OCCURRED IN THE ANBAR

PROVINCE IN 2006?

>> YEAH, EXACTLY.

BUT THE MOST IMPORTANT THING ISTHAT THE IRAQI ARMY WAS NOT WELL

EQUIPPED.

WE ASKED FOR, FOR EXAMPLE, JETFIGHTERS.

WE DIDN'T RECEIVE THEM YET.

THE CONGRESS APPROVED F-16S,SINCE MANY YEARS.

WE HAVEN'T RECEIVED THEM. NOW WEASKED,

THIS IS WHY THE IRAQI GOVERNMENTOFFICIALLY REQUESTED AN AIR

STRIKE BY AMERICAN FORCES.

NOW, PRESIDENT OBAMA ANNOUNCEDTODAY THAT THEY COULD TAKE

CERTAIN TARGETS, PRECISE ATTACKSWHENEVER THEY FEEL IT'S

IMPORTANT. I THINK IT'SIMPORTANT THAT WE GATHER

TOGETHER TO FIGHT THIS EXTREMEGROUP BECAUSE THEY ARE...

>> Jon: SO YOU WOULD LIKE USTO JOIN THE FIGHT?

>> I WOULD SAY THIS IS THE IRAQIGOVERNMENT REQUEST.

>> Jon: THE IRAQI GOVERNMENTWOULD LIKE US TO JOIN THE FIGHT?

>> YES, THEY REQUEST AMERICANAIR STRIKES, NOT JUST IN TROOPS,

GROUND TROOPS, THAT'S ADIFFERENCE BETWEEN ONLY

AMERICANS AND DRONES IN YEMENAND PAKISTAN AND OTHER AREAS.

>> Jon: YOU WOULD LIKE OURDRONE PROGRAM.

WE HAVE MANY DIFFERENT PACKAGES.

WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE? [LAUGHTER]

SO, SO LET ME SEE. LET ME GETYOUR ORDER RIGHT.

>> OKAY.

OKAY.

>> Jon: THE AMERICANS WOULD...

I FEEL LIKE WE'RE IN SORT OF AVERY STRANGE POSITION IN THAT WE

DID DESTABILIZE YOU.

>> THANK YOU.

>> Jon: YOU'RE WELCOME.

[LAUGHTER]I THINK AMERICANS FEEL LIKE WE

HAD SPENT AN AWFUL LOT OF MONEY,A LOT OF BLOOD FOR REASONS THAT,

YOU KNOW, WE CAN FIGHT ABOUTWHETHER OR NOT IT WAS RIGHT TO

GO IN OR NOT, BUT THAT MAYBE WEDO HAVE A MORAL OBLIGATION TO

THE IRAQI PEOPLE AFTER DOINGTHAT, BUT OUR ABILITY TO

WITHSTAND SORT OF BEING THEFABRIC THAT HOLDS THE COUNTRY

TOGETHER FROM THESE SECTARIANVIOLENCE ISSUES AND THESE

EXTREMIST VIOLENCE ISSUES, ISNOT A TENABLE POSITION FOR US TO

BE IN.

>> WELL, THERE IS AN IMPORTANTFACTOR THAT ABU MUSAB

AL-ZARQAWI, AND BY THE WAYTHE...

>> ZARQAWI WAS THE OLD LEADEROF THIS GROUP, THE JORDANIAN

THAT WAS KILLED A WHILE AGO.

>> YES.

ISIS WAS ORIGINALLY PART OF THEZARQAWI GROUP WHO WAS SEPARATE

FROM AL QAEDA.

ZARQAWI WROTE A LETTER TO OSAMABIN LADEN WHEN HE ANNOUNCED

ALLEGIANCE TO HIM, SAYING THATIF THE IRAQI GOVERNMENT GETS

THROWNOVER, THERE WILL BE NOOPTION BUT TO PACK AND LEAVE AS

WE DID IN AFGHANISTAN.

THE ONLY SOLUTION IS TO BRINGSECTARIAN WAR BETWEEN SUNNIS AND

SHIA.

>> Jon: SO THEY'RE FOMENTINGTHIS WAR.

THEY WANT THIS LARGER SECTARIANWAR.

>> YES. ABU BAKR AL-BAGHDADIWHOSE REAL NAME IS IBRAHIM AWWAD

AL-BADRI, HE'S TRIED TO PLAYTHAT SECTARIAN CARD.

>> Jon: HE WANTS TO FOMENTTHIS WAR.

LET'S DO THIS. LET'S TAKE BREAK.

CAN YOU STICK AROUND FAR LITTLEBIT?

>> YES.>> Jon: CAUSE WHAT I WANT TO

TALK ABOUT WHEN WE COME BACKIS, WOULD HE BE ABLE TO

SUSTAIN THAT SECTARIAN WAR IFTHE AL-MALIKI GOVERNMENT HAD

BEEN MORE OPEN TO POWER SHARINGWITH THE SUNNI MINORITY AND HAS

THAT PLAYED A ROLE IN THIS?

SO WHEN WE COME BACK, WE'LL TALKABOUT THAT.

WE'LL HAVE MORE WITHHAMID AL-BAYATI AFTER THIS.

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