Tony Blair

  • Aired:  09/14/10
  •  | Views: 64,674

Tony Blair sees extremism as a long-term strategic threat that we must be prepared to fight. (8:35)

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

>> Jon: WELCOME PWAFPBLG MY

GUEST TONIGHT, HE WAS THE PRIME

MINISTER OF THE UNITED KINGDOM

FROM 1997 TO 2007.

HIS NEW BOOK IS CALLED "A

JOURNEY: MY POLITICAL LIFE."

PLEASE WELCOME BACK TO THE

PROGRAM TONY BLAIR.

EVERY NIGHT WE PLAY IT.

WELCOME!

>> THANK YOU.

>> Jon: CONGRATULATIONS "A

JOURNEY: MY POLITICAL LIFE."

I IMAGINE IN ENGLAND WITH THIS

CAME OUT IT WAS WITH A LOT OF

POTTERESQUE FANFARE.

KIDS LINED UP AT BOOKSTORES

DRESSED AS THEIR FAVORITE

CHARACTER.

PEOPLE DRESSED AS GORDON BROWN.

[LAUGHTER]

HOW IS THE BOOK TOUR?

I KNOW THERE'S BEEN ROCKY

MOMENTS.

THERE'S BEEN PROTESTS AND SUCH.

>> YEAH, THERE'S BEEN A FEW EGGS

THROWN BUT THE BOOK HAS BEEN

SELLING SO IT'S GOOD.

>> Jon: WILLING TO TAKE SOME

EGGS.

>> NO THANKS.

>> Jon: WE CAN TALK, YOU KNOW,

I'VE READ THE BOOK COVER TO

COVER.

[LAUGHTER]

MEANING I'VE READ BOTH COVERS.

[LAUGHTER]

OBVIOUSLY WE CAN GO THROUGH

POINT BY POINT WHO IS RIGHT, WHO

IS WRONG, IRAQ, ALL THESE

DIFFERENT THINGS.

WHERE IS IT GOING TO GET US.

REALLY.

I'D LIKE TO HAVE A BROADER

DISCUSSION.

WE DON'T HAVE MUCH TIMEth

OKAY.

>> Jon: EXTREMISM, ARE WE

BEING PRACTICAL?

I SEE YOU AS A PRAGMATIST.

I THINK IT'S CLEAR IN THE BOOK

YOU SAW YOURSELF AS MORE OF A

PRACTICAL ALLY TO GEORGE W.

BUSH'S MORE IDEA LOGICAL --

IDEOLOGICAL -- SORT OF

SIMPLICITY BUT THAT WOULD BE

MISCONSTRUED.

I MEAN THAT HE HAD A CLEAR CUT

VISION.

I DON'T MEAN TO USE THE WORD

VISION.

[LAUGHTER]

BUT -- AS A PRAGMATIST, IS OUR

STRATEGY TO RID THE WORLD OF

EXTREMISTS PRACTICAL?

IN A LONG-TERM -- YOU TALK ABOUT

THIS A GENERATIONAL CONFLICT.

ARE WE BEING PRACTICAL IN THAT

PURSUIT?

>> THINK WE'RE BEING REALISTIC

THAT IT EXISTS.

IT EXISTS AIDS MORE OR LESS A

GLOBAL MOVEMENT WITH A NARRATIVE

THAT IS QUITE DEEP.

IT'S NOT JUST ABOUT HARD POWER

IT'S SOFT POWER AS WELL.

IT'S ABOUT BRINGING PEOPLE OF

DIFFERENT FAITHS TOGETHER,

RESOLVE THE MIDDLE EAST PEACE

PROCESS AS WELL AS THE HARD

BUSINESS OF FIGHTING.

WE DON'T HAVE AN OPTION BUT TO

CONFRONT THE EXTREMIST AND

DEFEAT IT.

IT WASN'T A PROVE -- PROVOCATION

>> Jon: NO, BUT THE POINT I'M

TRYING TO MAKE A VERY SMALL

GROUP OF PEOPLE CAN DO A GREAT

DEAL OF DAMAGE NOW.

THE AMOUNT OF RESOURCES THAT

WE'RE PUTTING INTO CHANGING

REGIMES IN IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN,

I LIVE IN NEW YORK.

WE HAVE COCKROACHES.

I'M RICH.

I HIRE PEOPLE TO COME IN.

THEY FUMIGATE.

I WILL NEVER AS LONG AS I LIVE

UNTIL NEW YORK CITY BE TOTALLY

RID OF COKE -- COCKROACHES.

I COULD SALE MY APARTMENT.

I COULD USE BUG ABOUT BOMBS AND

REDUCE THE AMOUNT PF COCKROACHES

BUT WHAT KIND OF LIFE IS THAT

FOR ME?

>> RIGHT.

>> Jon: DO YOU SEE WHAT I'M

SAY SOMETHING IN.

>> YES.

>> Jon: DO YOU SEE WHERE I'M

GOING HERE?

OUR STRATEGY SEEMS ALMOST

IDEALISTIC AND NAIVE.

>> LET ME TELL YOU HOW IT LOOKS

TO BE SPENDING TIME OUT IN THE

MIDDLE EAST MIDDLE EAST --

>> Jon: WHO HAS MORE

EXPERIENCE HERE THOUGH.

YOU CAN TRY.

[LAUGHTER]

>> YOU ARE DOING VERY WELL ON

YOUR BUT IT'S -- SPENDING TIME

AS I DO OUT THERE AND LOOKING AT

THIS, YOU SEE I DON'T THINK IT'S

JUST A QUESTION OF AFGHANISTAN

OR IRAQ.

YOU COULD SAY IRAN, COULD YOU

SAY PAKISTAN OR SOMALIA, YEMEN,

LEBANON, THE EXTREMIST IN PARTS

OF PALESTINE.

I THINK THIS IS -- WE HAVE GOT

TO BE SERIOUS ABOUT.

THIS IT'S A LONG-TERM MAJOR

STRATEGIC THREAT.

I DON'T SEE WHAT THE ALTERNATIVE

IS BUT WHEN IT FIGHTS US TO

STAND UP AND BE PREPARED TO

FIGHT BACK.

AND IN DOING SO TRYING TO UNITE

PEOPLE OF GOODWILL AND THERE ARE

MANY, MANY PEOPLE IN ISLAM WHO

DETEST THIS.

BUT COME TOGETHER AS PEOPLE IN

DEFENSE OF CIVILIZED VALUES AND

AGAINST THE EXTREMIST THAT KILLS

PEOPLE.

MANY OF THOSE WHO ARE DYING

INCIDENTALLY IN MANY OF THESE

COUNTRIES IT'S MUSLIMS KILLING

OTHER MUSLIMS.

>> Jon: NO QUESTION.

WE HAVE TO STRENGTH THE HAND OF

THOSE WHO WISH TO DEFEAT

EXTREMISM.

WHEN I SAY OUR STRATEGY IS

NAIVE.

LET'S BEGIN WITH AFGHANISTAN

BECAUSE THAT'S WHERE IT STARTED.

WE'RE ATTACKED BY 19 SAUDIS

WHOSE SPIRITUAL LEADER IS

ENSCONCED IN AFGHANISTAN SO WE

ATTACK THERE.

YOU ARE A PROPONENT OF KEEPING

THE PRESSURE ON THERE BUT THE

IRAQ WAR PULLED RESOURCES FROM

AFGHANISTAN.

NOW WE'RE FIGHTING TWO FRONTS.

WE HAVE AFGHANISTAN.

WE HAVE IRAQ.

IRAQ WE'RE FIGHTING BECAUSE

THERE'S A MAN THAT WE DEEM A

THREAT IN THIS GLOBAL WAR.

SO IN DEFEATING HIM, WE'VE

LESSENED OUR HAND IN AFGHANISTAN

NOW WE'VE GOT --

>> THIS IS THE POINT.

I DON'T THINK YOU CAN JUST SAY

THE THREAT IS ONLY HERE AND IT'S

NOT THERE.

WE'RE ABOUT TO FACE THE SAME

CHOICE IN RELATION TO IRAN.

>> Jon: EXACTLY.

YOU HIT THE NAIL ON THE HEAD.

BY GOING INTO IRAQ WE WEAKENED

OUR EFFORT IN AFGHANISTAN.

BY GOING TO IRAQ WE STRENGTHENED

IRAN.

>> I DON'T THINK THE ANSWER TO

IVAN SADDAM HUSSEIN.

WE TRIED THAT IN THE 1980'S.

WE ARMED THEM AND HELPED THEM

THEN AND THE RESULT WAS THE

IRAN, IRAQ WAR, ONE MILLION

CASUALTIES.

THE KUWAIT WAR, THE KILLING OF

HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF HIS OWN

PEOPLE, THE USE OF CHEMICAL

WEAPONS.

>> Jon: AND THE ANSWER TO THIS

NOW IS THEY'LL HAVE A NUCLEAR

WEAPON.

>> THEY ARE TRYING TO ACQUIRE

ONE ANYWAY.

THE ISSUE IS DO YOU TRY TO STOP

THEM OR NOT?

>> Jon: DON'T YOU FEEL AT SOME

POINT.

OH, MY GOD WE HAVE COCKROACHES

WE HAVE TO GET RATS TO EAT THEM.

NOW WE HAVE RATS.

OH, NO, WE GET BETTER GET CATS.

WE'RE OVERRUN BY CATS.

LET'S GET DOGS.

WE NEED POLAR BEARS.

WE'RE CHASING OUR TAILS

AROUND --

>> WELL --

>> Jon: THE STRATEGY IS OUR

RESOURCES ARE NOT LIMITLESS.

WE CANNOT CONTINUE TO GO INTO

COUNTRIES, TOPPLE WHATEVER

REGIME WE FIND DISTASTEFUL,

OCCUPY IT TO THE EXTENT THAT WE

CAN REBUILD THE INFRASTRUCTURE

AND REWIN THE HEARTS AND MINDS

BECAUSE ULTIMATELY WITHIN THAT

THERE COULD STILL BE A POCKET OF

EXTREMISM IN THAT COUNTRY SO ALL

THAT EFFORT WOULD NOT GAIN US

THE ADVANTAGE AND THE SAFETY

THAT WE NEED AS EVIDENCED BY AT

TAKES IN ENGLAND BY HOME GROWN

EXTREMISTS?

DON'T WE NEED TO RETHINK AND BE

SMARTER ABOUT THE WAY WE'RE

HANDLING IT?

>> I THINK IT'S A COMBINATION OF

DIFFERENT THINGS THAT TAKES THIS

POISON OUT OF WORLD.

IT'S NOT, I'M AFRAID, AS SIMPLE

AS THINKING THIS IS JUST

SOMETHING THAT IS 1,000 MILES

AWAY AND NOT HERE AT HOME.

A FEW YEARS AGO PROBABLY YOU

COULD HAVE CONSIDERED IT

UNLIKELY YOU WOULD HAVE HOME

GROWN AMERICAN TERRORISTS.

>> Jon: NO.

I DON'T KNOW IF YOU'VE READ OUR

BOOKS BUT -- THE TEA PARTY THING

ONCE THEY GOT RID OF YOU GUYS

THEY TURNED IT RIGHT ON US.

IT WASN'T --

>> WELL, LOOK --

>> Jon: WE'VE BEEN BOMBING

OURSELVES FOR A LONG TIME.

THAT'S MY POINT.

WE'RE OUT OF TIME.

WE'RE GOING TO TAKE A COMMERCIAL

BREAK ON THE SHOW.

DO YOU MIND.

CAN YOU STICK AROUND AND TALK

FOR A LITTLE BIT.

WE'LL THROW THE WHOLE THING

UP --

>> I'M DELIGHTED.

>> Jon: THERE'S THIS THING --

WE'RE GOING TO THROW IT UP ON

THE INTERWEB.

YOU CAN DOWNLOAD IT THERE YOUR

iTUNES.

[LAUGHTER]

ANYWAY "A

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