On the first COMMENTARY podcast of the week, we ask whether the Michael Flynn plea indicates huge trouble for the Trump White House or will prove to be much ado about nothing. But in the "much ado about something" category, we place the astonishing report that Saudi honcho Muhammad bin Sultan has effectively endorsed an Israeli peace proposal and sought to impose it on recalcitrant Palestinian boss Mahmoud Abbas. Could be the biggest news of the young century. Give a listen.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Some regions- welcome to the commentary magazine. Podcast today is Monday December. Fourth, two thousand and seventeen. I am John Podhoretz, the editor of commentary, the seventy three year old monthly of political probe analysis and cultural criticism from a conservative perspective join us a commentary magazine. We give you a few free reads and then asked you to subscribe: one thousand nine hundred and ninety five for a digital subscription, two thousand nine hundred and ninety five for a all access subscription,
our beautiful monthly magazine in your mailbox eleven times a year with me, as always senior editor, a green while the birthday boy? Forty six years, all today, high Abe old hygiene. Your Rossman considerably younger, associate editor high now John conservative are even a little younger than Noah high sorrow, Senor Writer, John Happy birthday happy were Dave. I'm like there's a kind of Degeneration thing here going on because I'm fifty six able forty six, no is thirty. I I was hoping you were be sorry, I'm sorry. I learning that one three thirty, two men, thirty two! That is just yet when thirty two years ago, you know what I was doing. I was like sitting at home and further tv watching the hands across Amerika, something like that, that's that's the David. You were born. I just
a boy tat. I was either watching hands across Amerika. I was seeing like back to the future. I don't know something like that, while you were, you know. and, what's more, not even born in this country, that's right in Tehran, so we have, we have agreed. We have we ever generational chasm. We have. We have done millennial sitting here and baby boomers of generation exorcism, it's you know we have. We cover the waterfront and it's really a terrible thing, but you know the good thing is that you can always go to Itunes and drop those reviews. Unless you been great about it, I do want to point out that, in the arms race, Jonah Goldberg again is like out lapping everybody with his vicious industrial dog and cat machine Willow four thousand reviews, were over six hundred views just go then say something nice, because I need to have a semblance of a competition going on here, at least
so the Jonah doesn't think that you know he's just got the entire. You know conservative world? You know in his pocket, because it's too much too much at all Itunes Review Commentary Magazine podcast. Thank you very much. No Rossman Friday saw the boy its news. Yet in the rush, special investigator special prosecutor, probing wanna tell everybody about it. Yes, so my plan, the former National security advisor for twenty four Derek slave for days. For the present, the United States plead guilty to a up a reasonably small charge involving lying to the FBI.
Leading to a lot of speculation about the extent to which make Flynn is cooperating with the Mueller probe now against Donald Trump, and there were some erroneous reports about the nature of that cooperation early on, but the headline is the headline which is that, yes, my plan is now working with the special prosecutor. We thought this was going to be the case when they his attorneys, cut off communications with Donald Trump attorney. He joins the low level, coffee boy, George Papadopoulos. As a former campaign or administration officials. Now working with the Mueller broke right, and then there are two other officials. Three other officials, Carter, page Paul out. Four pages not been indicted, pits sorry forget, page met metaphorically and gaiety camera brigades is worsening Preston. My camera Ricky
Rick, AIDS and palm out afford who have not plaid, who have pleaded not guilty to charges coming from the special prosecutors investigation, none of which, by the way, have anything to do with the Russia probe or the Trump campaign all having to do with their behaviour as lobbyists and as possible. the wanderers, so that means there are four officials around Trump campaign and an early going administration who have now who are now in, in the legal system involved that was either created by the special prosecutor, probe, Sannella, My we might take follows or tracks with our dear friend Andy Mccarthy at National Review, who believes that the the
nature of the guilty. Plea is being were estimated and misunderstood that that, in his estimation, as a former, federal prosecutor, who has who prosecuted people on you know in the middle conspiracy with most most readily his most famous case, being the blind shake and the bombing of the first World Trade Center, which was a massive international conspiracy. People were indicted on that. One new in when you get a guilty plea from somebody a case like this, the guilty party will reflect the scheme, the larger scheme that you are attempting to get the person who plead guilty to Turkey, two, so so it will involve, would involve the central charges and not the charge that that Michael
pledged to which is the basically misleading lying to the FBI, about the nature of own conversations with the soviet ambassador to the United States, Russia, the USA solve it see I'm telling you I'm I'm I'm a baby pool where I can get out just because this happened almost thirty years ago doesn't mean I can't I don't still think of it. So they're not that differently here about ok, so so I'm in the the fact that the when plea, which really does mean is cooperating is nonetheless on a relatively low level charge, which is the same charge you would be charged with if you lied on your income tax form there at Mahler does not yet have a theory of thee.
Case that involves a conspiracy to collude with Russia and that therefore he still fishing and that he's fish. with Papadopoulos he's fishing with Flynn that all of the the interrogations that he is conducting still centre around trying to build the simple a simple evidentiary case: that something happened, that index It's that there was a knowing effort to collude or have a conspiracy with Russia to affect the results of the twenty six. The election. and what you alluded to that was really shocking. Is that for about six or seven hours on Friday, the world thought that this was in the offing because of horrendous reporting by ABC Brian ROS, who said Flynn, was ready.
To testify that he had been ordered to make contact with Russia by Trump during the campaign, which was false. He never said that he said that he was ready to reveal that he had been told to command Two with Russia, after the campaign during the transition when he was a representative of the incoming administration, and if we are now about to start indicting incoming administrations for having contacts with foreign leaders, every administration in world history would be so
dated since we know, for example, that the Obama administration was reaching out privately to IRAN in the transition period to see if they could make some kind of a private arranged with IRAN and nobody's say here screaming that you know that the Obama administration should be indicted for violating the Logan actor suborning american foreign policy, as it was being conducted by the outgoing Bush administration so. I tend to think that there is less here than meets the eye, but no you you feel differently. Well, I mean if the news for this administration is that you know the the. nightmare now, or rather the indictment of the president's campaign manager, Madame several manage members of his campaign staff and now his first national security director, all of whom are working with a special council
instigating the extent while we know you'd modelled Ariane afford and gates are not working with the independent council. They did not plead they put ably play. They, they entered a plea of not guilty. They are not cooperating ok, so you just have Papadopoulos and work bringing and then to other indictments of people surrounding this precedent, including his an essay and his campaign manager. The good news, the administration there is. It doesn't look like they're going to lock in some sort of collusion charge whatever. That means the. Obviously, as we know there is no such thing- is a collusion charge but precisely how this is good for this administration. I fail to see, I mean we're five months into this in education, is rolling up. Members of the upper echelons of this administration in this campaign, at a pretty soon anchoring pace and it is quite clear that they are giving them low charges
I'm trying to coerce the visuals into cooperating with this investigation in order to get bigger fish and they're getting people to cooperate, and You don't do that unless you have something bigger in mine, so the eye is quite clear that what we know so far is that there. This is going to go on past January, for example, you have people like tie Cobb, whose a attorney for the President's saying this is gonna be by January, in the president himself, apparently speaking to as many people's account expressing his desire to see this wrapped up rather quickly, cleanly man it's quickly that it's not going to be, and this is getting closer and closer to the president's. So if worse, if we're, saying that this is really great news, because it doesn't look like Donald Trump campaign worked with Russia over the course of its intervention that twenty sixteen election in order to get Donald Trump election Elect Rather, it doesn't look like those two forces were working together. I mean that seems like it sort of cold
comfort, considering that they are rolling up all these other charges and Donald Trump has about a thousand skeletons in his closet and, as we know, special counsel's will fish and look for whatever they can and the notion that this is going to come up with anything on the president. That's impeachable seems to me like a bad day. Well, there's also there's still be question of obstruction of justice regarding Trump and and his firing of comic Now there's this idea out there that Trump is responding. Though, explosively to the FBI on Twitter and end, you know, do today Friday's news general be cause he's feeling the heat is feeling the noose tied round his neck, and he knows you're getting close them. I think that's kind of bad analysis in itself, because how a trump respond anyway, I arrived. I think it would look any different than give. If you were, if you were to begin with the proposition that Trump did nothing wrong
I knew you would say the Trump saying that the FBI was at become a someone throw organization, and it's just apartment was bad news because it had it it it contained people who were supporting Hillary and attacking him who had to be removed from probe through and then and then Flynn, of whom he said this morning, quote he's let a very strong life Hilary like many times the F B, I nothing happened to her Flynn lie than they destroy his life. Hilary never tell pilloried ever spoke to the FBI. She didn't have a didn't, have a sworn interview with the FBI. That's not what happened. They didn't tape it, but my point is that if you
thought that he did. What he is saying is nothing, but nothing really bad happened. The end that we spent a year on this nonsense and it's ridiculous so that if you were a point that you can't lazo exercise attacks on the FBI, which are now nearly as attacks on the Justice Department, the FBI, which are regular, suggest that he's at least considered moving against his justice, parliament, and that is the end game in this thing that happens I'll bet. My point is that if he did nothing wrong, I'm not sure This is the way that he would behave. It's not ordinary behaviour for president to attack the Justice Department, the F B. I both who worked for him and two entities announced that he believes there, both corrupt organizations with no bona feed us. That is a pretty shocking thing. To do. Nonetheless, if you were going to say, if you came from the prince that he didn't do anything. This is the way a normal person would behave, their not being fair to Flynn and what's more, We were gonna talk, Turkey. He would say yes, said to call me going.
don't think, as I know, Flynn didn't do anything wrong. I don't know you know and he's a great guy. He served his country he's propane create an hero and he's a general, and you should go easy on and because that's the that's a good thing and charitable thing to do, and if you want to go out and then say that I did this because I was obstructing justice will screw Hugh because I obstructing justice. I'm saying man to man. I know Flynn and I trust him now that may be bad behavior it may it can only the obstruction of justice, if there was just too to obstruct doubt whether, by which I mean Flynn I and the FBI, but a conversation had with kiss lack about whether or not the Soviets that Russia has excuse me should support, say since against re Israel is not? Is not that is not obstruction of justice. He says, go easy on my clinkers, he lied once the F B, I got a phone call with phone call and why he did it. I don't know cause he was nervous and whatever.
Now. It will also isn't in search of justice because from what we know, he didn't know that Flynn had lied to the FBI Right accord, in turn, Sally AIDS and various other. Be he when he had this conversation with co me. He didn't know that Flint had lied to the FBI. He didn't know the substance of what Flynn had said to the FBI, so I can't be obstruction of justice if he didn't know that Flynn had committed a crime and then was asking Are we the cover it up? You have to know that the crime was committed for it to become. rub of you asked someone to go easy on the criminal. Now, I'm no supporter of Trump and all this time as baffled, but you what we all know about more things than MIKE Flynn has done publicly that are indictable, including lying about the extent to which it is being paid by the government of Turkey and Russia while he was serving,
as the USA, embryos are close, those aren't gonna bring us closer to those are, then, is that not a criminal? Oh, that's a civil charge, that's like if you fail to disclose the Ex Wires Vienna form. That's not. It felt like that's, that's all it would be sued for by the IRS. For failing to this, let me pick up an unknown point, six people as bad efforts. Layer said six people in the history of I'd say: it's been indicted for failing to properly disclose that they were lobbying for somebody in fifty years of this legislation being on the books. Now, I'm not saying that this is a good thing. I'm just saying that this is now like the high crime of treason, destroying the country, unless that made the case that there is an indictment crime, that was not something that the prosecutor, while we don't, we would it certainly, with all this speaks to, is that that that, Administration was staffed with with sketchy people who act
it in ways that are distasteful. From I certainly with Flynn long before we had a conversation about collusion there are signs that he was trouble. He would promote outright figures. He would get invited by Putin to go. Speak not speak to attend a feast in honour of Russia. Today, our tee, the russian propaganda network. He accepted money from the government of Turkey to try to extradite for tools Glenn President Ardor ones archenemy, who lives in In in Pennsylvania, so all of these were things to be alarmed about, and then you had manifold and others in a campaign who either for venal reasons or for ideological reasons, and often for both is based you're gonna inclinations towards various authoritarian governments by still on the
I have to come down on the side of of John and Andy Mccarthy on the evidence it was provided so far. It doesn't feel like much else is forthcoming and its beginning to feel like, and maybe this will bring a sort of peace were divided nation that the idea of of Trump like did, was offensive and am a sort of mine blowing for so many people that their she'll be there has to be some punishment exacted, and so you, yet some of his people on you, you know, do lying to the FBI, you get him on tax charged and so forth, and maybe this will bring some and by the way, their legitimate charges. I mean, if he's pleaded guilty to it identity, but it's I'd like a nice, not early, baffling that we could even remotely have this conversation when we had a month ago, when we
at this very conversation, one month ago, when we were talking about puppet apple is and how wouldn't let a little minor figure, this guy could really, but it could still be the same. In other words, even by these very really highlighted likely bill. The indict still don't go to any behaviour during The campaign, which was the whole quest. The whole question here is whether or not a dozen track, and I hate it was around- was made a conspiracy with Russia to effect the results of the twenty sixteen elect. Once we had a special council about this product question is a relevant working at other everybody in every living, a leather talk about now. You have to think nothing about our commissioner and the pre campaign, world amnesia and J down from Junior exactly so. Here's the interesting dynamic- and this is true of the Republican Party under Trump and the republican campaign and people work for Trump and all that time. seems to debase everything that he touches right. So you know every
politician, who has gotten involved with him, has somehow found his brand cheapened in some fashion, TED crews. And I ain't previous answer, spice, Sir and Paul Ryan and Mitch Mcconnell to some extent, because they were so resolutely against him. It marker Rubio, there's a kind of weird. cheapening effect as though any proxy but he too Trump lowers your brand well, so it would. a kind of almost supernatural justice serve some seed out the weird twilight. justice if, everybody around Trump got fried but Trump Jack. It gets indicted, Vanka gets a whole picks gets indicted. You know, Everybody in steel everybody gets indicted and whose standing trumped up. They could get everybody, but the target out, it's like they shot everybody, but the target. I mean what what
look not yet nobody talks, as you ve been beset him a hundred times. Nobody talks about how the White Water investigation failed, because Bill Clinton wasn't as a result of that investigation. If Donald Trump doesn't act against this justice as and the special council when it closes in on his son in law on his children, seems highly unlikely to me, and that is well. The flint quote that I just read suggests in his mind he should absolutely pardon Flynn he's got a hard life, he told one lie the FBI and they destroy this life for what? What? What other grounds? Could you come up with a reason to pardon somebody Now he had an american hero. Just said one thing I mean, and then there is of course the question about firing Mahler He gets to close, like I don't know what what would restrain him. As you were saying in the pre, show.
We ve priced all this in so he's. You know he's he's in the position that he's in he's in these thirties and his approval ratings. Eighty percent- republican support of his in the thirties and brutal ratings as the terrible number right, but is his number gonna drop if Irish Mueller, presumably the thirty some five percent of people who support him think that bill probe is unjust and unfair, and his Torres unfairly targeting him or a lot of those people. Do I do I mean I just don't. I don't understand the dynamic that were there were working in here What I do know is that a country that is along it Bob plus three percent growth, with unemployment now getting down close to four percent and A mass of tax have having them pass, which, despite the fact that everybody in liberal media, seems to think it's a monstrous bill that will kill people.
will nonetheless certainly have some kind of stimulating effect. You can't you know you can't release, he from the government into the private sector? The way this money is going to be released in the private sector without it having a stimulus, are figured out the economy growing like crazy next year, and all that and he's still in the thirties, because this is who he is so yeah, it's priced in because he's never gonna get about forty, but about that absence some sort of a foreign conflict, I think that's that's probably likely foreign complex, usually raise people's, do improve president's enemy, Brett! Ok, I mean, I think, one of things that that remains to be seen as it. I think Trump can also get himself into into trouble by responding to all this in ways that that will create conflicts in and am and come
patients winded invent that's already sort of what happened, even with the possibility of an obstruction charge. Look beginning in January, I've been saying to liberals or about listening to make us. Why would they keep it powder drives. You scream that every single thing you can't raise the alarm loud enough when Something really major happen. So, with like every day, there are five things that Richard Painter, the former Bush ethics lawyer and by friend, David from, and that my friend in our Former colleague, Jem, Reuben, Alice like come out and say this is the worst thing, that's ever by God into. How can this be happening than something real? big happens like his national security adviser takes a plea and you're I mean it's not that like I was saying- and I can of course, in the absence of aid. The else you come out the news, there's no news all week and then suddenly there's a piece of news that says that the former,
so here I was was indicted and cooperating with the special council like there would be nothing else to talk about. Instead, the tax bill is gonna, kill, millions, TED loudly summers, the former present Harvard former head of the bombers Council, the arab adviser, says the tax bill will kill ten thousand people a year, this is not seen political discussion. We're tire world has gone bananas. The anti troubled is gone, but as the pro Trump world as bananas trumpet endorsing a credibly, accused child molesters openly for an hour, bam ascended seat and, if you think that you, no news of a single charge. You know guilty plea, is gonna like break through and change people's opinions of Trump. You got another then, coming, I say, valuable opinions of tramper utterly irrelevant, though, to what tumult mauler air has now
I disagree. Would you like to know why? Because mowers, lock, unindicted Mahler isn't Mahler, there's no indictment. Coming of the president from the special council. That's not what happens. He will issue a report He learned a lot of other people. He cannot invite the president. He will issue a report that maybe recommends impeachment, but will it matter what my where's, but trumps popularity is verses. What mothers popularity is and what is acceptances and what that does to the twenty eighth election prospects for Democrats who there would have to be a democratic majority in the house to indict Trump course. It matters a corset matters. What people think and what the problem is not at this early stage and here's. Why? Because your build, if you're going to go the impeachment route, which is what we are Democrats, are going to go, You're gonna go there, stone the results of this special prosecutor than it doesn't matter now, whether they pursue it and Republicans aren't going to pursue it. It's the building of the case The case is being made now and getting into the puzzle,
imagination in creating some sort of of, I guess legitimate basis to pursue that, but when it doesn't matter what Republicans, because Republicans would never pursuers, including the wooden where what is the basis for impeachment, I'm still not mean different, because I find it. I found it unpatriotic industries for the time when he said we rush If you have her emails, you nobody said it publicly beyond that, and some of these are certainly the fact that that Flint himself and with Russian autocrat, an oligarchy, its growth and is John said as president, but beyond that, what what is it? what's the basis for impeaching him other than him being, I agree reprehensible and love of black ok that's. The point is that, according to Trump antagonist and frozen enemies, there are cases for impeachment every five minutes
and there will be, if he's entirely cleared ratings, that won't change the monument issue and whether or not he he supports the tax bill because it makes a billion dollars, which is another thing that people are saying today there's something new that could then that indicates you know, including supporting Roy more, which indicates he should be impeached. someone on Twitter called this resistance porn or resist born, and I thought it's too, everything is like and I think, as a news, consumer or a twitter consumer, I should say I do feel even the deadening, fact and myself were because everyone reacts everything on these terms. I mean I like we run the risk of because we find these people distasteful, of discounting the fact that there is a special prosecutor that rolling up this administration in this campaign and very systematic fashion
would be disturbing in any objective, very disturbing, and you know why to which it is getting close to his family and his yon is very high level associates and the very likely notion. I think that we will move against this in some fashion or form. That's where you get. This Impeach. Well, there's nothing on the table as impeach now will be impeach of all additives that, if you want to follow the argument through since you asked, would be courting following those theory that he in diets Jared Cushion error and Trump fires him and pardons cushions and flat, and everybody who was indicted in this case on the grounds that this is a runaway prosecution of with no merit. Then, then Democrats say he has fired Mueller and done this in a manner excuse me a conspiracy to observe justice, no different from not just emigrates. Many Republicans would join that. I wish that were true. We'll have to see whether we can have often asked
They would react to it the same way. They reacted to Roy Moore with revulsion and the first forty eight hours and then walk back when they find out their bases in the Gunsmoke episode. That is the big thing here. It seems to me back to your pricing in point, which is Roy more Roy more wins next week, so weak from tomorrow, the primary that the special action If Roy more wins, the question will be is for we so of a scandal to many of the story Bro the week before. Could he couldn't could we did it are things moving so fast that everything in tropical, back to where it was ended. it's there. After a moment of instability and similarly with Trump is there now he's the most this person in the world. He is the most notorious person in America. Is that in a like? What will,
Ben to change. Anybody's perception of this guy or just that everything comes at just adds up, not another nugget to the stew and the ideas I dont believe the press. If you're someone who says I don't believe the press, then you have a blanket exe whose for never re evaluating a single thing that somebody you support, does can't say I dont believe any critical thing written or set about him. So revaluations impossible revaluations, the entire key to Trump becoming so unpopular than even publicans turned against him yeah. I think the point about a scandal being out there too long is excellent, because, especially today what happens here? is this a story breaks and then, and then these story gets so many secondary and tertiary stories on top of it that it has a sort of key.
filling out effect than that everything at its opposite have now been said and determined and denied then said again, and then he added you should have left with this third through it. If it becomes such a blur and such a fog that everything goes, so that's everything cancels everything else out and we're distort about the stasis level than that does not favour this White House, because stasis level for this White House is thirty. Three percent will favour in what sense, favorites, not when reelection favorite to be to be impeached and removed from office, because I would say thirty: three percent is in the end, for him, gonna be fine as long as that, Probably a hurried doesn't just gently. I find that to be also strange, because that's a very prominent theory among people who Who say you know who this is this is how we got tramper. You know you knew five thirty eight and in your times, were ninety nine percent for Hillary Clinton and looked Donald Trump still one. He he's out of there,
unsustainable level popularity right now. So if the hinge is on the notion that we can't know anything and twenty sixteen was maybe it may be Sweden areas, or maybe it was a sign of things to come on we're in this new era in which we can't possibly navigate. As we can see two feet in front of her phases, maybe but that sort of a self fulfilling way to say well, you know that than the normal course of events doesn't apply anymore in allowing this interpretation is that there are these moments in time in which you can judge on a massive scale, weather or not? All of this stuff has had an effect or not, and those are elections rights. we will know next Tuesday Wednesday morning, Tuesday night, when whatever happens with Roy more Indulge Jones happens in Alabama, whether or not this theory that I just space is real whether or not more squeaks through or does better than sweeping through or Jones wins, whether or not trump as a drag or help there all
will be all kinds of ways to determine whether that is true and then we go into two thousand and eighteen, and despite all of the talk there will be four hundred and thirty five legislative elections for the house and thirty three for the Senate, or some that and will know then to without being all this interpretation. and will be meaningless because they'll be amiss, when at which the american people render their judgement until then we're all just speculating right. So I think the data points that we have, so far are the Trump has been bad for republican prospects. The November shall lacking in Virginia and various other places, and these weird bits of information about local races in Oklahoma and other places like that were Democrats of one. lower level offices that they haven't one and seventy years all indicate that that as no up you ve written about when we talked about after that, a
That is, tsunami is going to come. That is going to knock Republicans over. However, I'm going to pitch one thing and then we're going to go to the to the commercial, but what? If the sex harassment, scandal on Capitol Hill and the emergence of this slush fund to pay off people who have charge harassment all this. What if this falls more heavily and Democrats and Republicans as it has so far right, sex some channels in this room have taken in John Conyers this Democrat from the right whose name I can't her l, Frank animal. What if there are fifteen cases that emerge of Democrats, but only for Republicans or something like that going into twenty eighteen? That could have a material effect on democratic chances and twenty eighteen
appears that the you know if Democrats find themselves hamstrung, because their party seems to be more uniquely in alike prey to these sorts of scandals involving their congressmen apart because allow Are the republican congressmen who didst for this have already been washed away in previous floods? That could be better the ex factors that has an effect on elections. That will muddy this point that I am trying to make the did. very well. Could it has everything to do with women's right to the east? The extent to which women are energized to turn out The presumption here is that women are particularly were repulsed in this moment by the lack of accountability that Donald Trump and others like him have faced for their indiscretions admitted indiscretions, whether Donald Trump admits
the existence of the excess Hollywood tape or not these days so yet, whether not women are motivated to turn out and vote against. Republicans as sort of revenge for this moment will definitely be hampered if if this keeps hitting liberals, but liberals have a way of compartmentalizing the fact that its only if it's the disproportionate at this point the amount, vacuous accusations against people on the left. Now we're talking it's it's coming from Hollywood and NPR and public radio generally an Broadway and the opera and academia. Ok, bides vacant compartmentalized ripe were among themselves. what they need to win the select, what what they need to win the midterms going away as independent voters right, that's what they made. The whole key is to get the people who either would stay home. Or might you know my ten lean more to the right to come to them and that's not so compartmentalizing naked they can choose to.
Compartmentalized and vote. Look Republicans vote Roy more Obama and overwhelming number. So it's not like Our delegation is not something that can happen free with everybody, you know, but it's a quest what you do with the people who are not entirely in your camp but might be depressed stirred to say: are they all suck and stay home warming it's like it's another one of these sort of algebraic cancellation, both sides moments, it's like you, but we will have their perverts. We have our perverts. What the hell you got a vote, they got a vote. We are about. Well, guys. So, let's talk a little about the great courses plus because now, more than ever, Abe it's important to keep learning, particularly now that you ve turned forty six
about what's happening in a whirl across a wide range of topics? That's why we're big family gray courses great? We have unlimited access to learn from award winning experts about thousands of fastening topics, history, politics, economics- even how to appreciate great works of music watch lectures from any smartphone tat. laptop to be extremely audio with Ray courses plus APP and Right I was one of our listeners. You can start watching the way courses plus for free, clearly the one that we ve been enjoying or aims been enjoying as he is. He descends into the final years of his sadly is that you're, sad life, I mean that you know. marching on Abe so sad, but why is that of a wiser? That's right, so the course that you, showing that go the way I wanted actually the modern political tradition. Can you tell us all about the modern political tradition?
sure I what the last letter watches really interesting, is this. If he were the lecturer brought up this point that MAX vapor has made that really kind of stopping my tracks and made me think about, which is that equality requires wait for it bill rock receive because you need a bureaucracy to sir, blindly Nazi he individuals in order to treat them all the same. So there's there is there no sort of special consideration, which is why we hate bureaucracies That's terrific. It sounds like the idea of the elder, silent, modelled on my experience of the DMZ has gotten a lot better and we certainly a lot better than it was when I went to the DMZ on the day. The syrup Mary was Rita being born in Tehran, since I was twenty four was not what you do. It's gotten much better, because in part the government does the
on line stuff, so poorly that you're actually been rough, calling in person exactly right so anyway, so MAX of Aber the great rigid eggs as the olive just teaching a lot about the monopolies tradition, which you can learn about the great courses plus. So we want you to benefit from the re courses plus two and they are offering our listeners an opportunity to enjoy this. and all of their lectures free for one month, but you need to that abusing our special Europe. Also so get your free month. They sign up at the great courses plus dotcom, slash commentary. That's all one word, the great courses plus dotcom slashed commentary, and we think that re courses plus four sponsoring the commentary pod now that we're talking about tramp tramp tramp tramp tramp and they may be like genuinely earthshaking epoch, making epic changing news going on right now in the Middle EAST that no one could possibly have anticipated five years ago or for it
over three years ago, news coming out that Mohammed than Sultan, the essentially the governor of Saudi or what you would call him, the leader of Saudi Arabia at the moment, summoned palestinian Authority president, Mahmoud Abbas to Riad and informed him that he was expecting a boss to agree to a peace deal with Israel. The deal is the could Arioch thrown B that in Yahoo the negotiating gambit on peace, which is as the palestinian state in Gaza The West Bank non contiguous mean there's no way for them to be concise connected. demilitarized so account. Standing Army with
All of the major settlement blocks israeli Settlement Box that sit on territory that Israel seized back in their took in the nineteen sixty seven sixty eight or the Bush emanates settlements and the major cities are equal and a cup of others in the West Bank. Remain israeli territory. Other settlements then, are left to be firm everybody leave or not said not. So whatever the there's no will be no agreement to make the West Bank under the Palestinians Union Rhine just like we don't Israel is not palestinian free. and that Abbas reacted in exchange for a lot of money for Halsey Authority and a cash payments to Abbas for his agreement and Abbas reacted with shock. Horror and upset and doesn't know what to do. And meanwhile ants on Wednesday were told Trump May on the
Asian of the six month requirement that he say that the? U S, embassy can move to Muslim, that he will let the embassy move to Jerusalem, ambled declare Jerusalem, the eternal capital of Israel the matter of trumps gonna do that. I served doubt that he will particularly with this news, but forget Trump. Here the leader of Saudi Arabia has to all the leader of the palestinian people that he endorse A jewish state not with night sixty seven but posts, nineteen sixty seven borders against a demilitarize palestinian state a go, getting position that was the opening gambit of the right wing israeli negotiators there is aside from everything else, the Mohammed, but seldom has done so rob over the last two months or last month. This is
The most jawdropping thing piece of news in the Middle EAST certainly since the arab spring, but I mean For me, I don't know even had a process. The fact that this is what is coming out of Saudi Arabia. well, this is it is astonishing, but it's also the culmination of of a long process that began in round the nuclear iranian Nuclear Deal where America's additional arab allies led by Saudi Arabia, but also United Arab. Its Jordan and others began. To worry about iranian influence in the region, and they began to also feel at the same time that there's no. They don't really have any enmity against Israel and that Israel could be a sort of security patron an ally to them as the? U S departs from the region, and
eyes, always jug. When you sat across from from arab diplomats in our diplomats, if it was, as you know, on the record or on background, they would say you know The palestinian issue is very important to us and this resolution, as well as one key factor to developing patient across the middle and then I saw it was off the record they would say, is Please save us from IRAN, and- and I think that now there that is no longer off the record, is its with four have been silent. He has this vision, but amenities does very much aligned with Albania.
and others in the region where they? These are the status quo powers and their sank? Look. Iran is the major threat in its these stabilizing activities from across this art, from Yemen to to Iraq, to Lebanon, Syria and elsewhere. That's what our real threat is combined with their kind of potential nuclear capability that was enabled by the nuclear deal. So why pick on Israel, which is this? You know the state that has no real beef with us that could be of could be protectorate in case things go down with IRAN because they share the same sense of threat, perception and so rational is amazing. It's taken decades to get here, but it's a I even if Mohammed been salmon is an indication of the Arab, the arab states that traditional arab states I'll exclude Qatar, which is a different entity, but that other traditional
states are coming to their senses. It's amazing thing: syrups has its. It is the best product of the Iranian, right everything, everything but the IRAN deals terrible except to produce this, which the abomination did not want at all. This is not what they wanted to produce. It goes to show how poor the administration played that deal. Have they forced Israel and an Sunni Arabs into an alliance by excluding them on the details of the deal by striking the deal that that there was a pose a threat to these countries. I would add real quick that point. That syrup maiden appreciate that a lot of this current moment has a lot to do with the arab spring, which blew up this myth that all conflict in the Middle EAST stems from the lack of peace in the Israel, Palestine. Such way
when you had actors like Egypt in the United Arab Emirates, executing air strikes without informing the United States and territory in Algeria, Libya, rather than you had the notion. Yet this was almost conflict stemmed from Palestine was, was blown up. The promises that that that that allusions still is has come a lot of fealty among the professional diplomatic class and that's rather than linkage. Oh yeah, the linkage there is not just there, but you know, oddly enough Jared Cushion, are speaking at the Sorbonne forum on Sunday himself, basically the echo that I think ignorantly you sign of how he is so wildly at over his head here, but that he said that we need in Israel palestinian Peace deal for regional stability, which is in fact the opposite of what the in our view on the non establishment Terry in foreign policy world has has come to understand here, which is that
That is not like this. I just think we need to reflect for a moment on why this is so mine blowing, if this were nineteen seventies before most of you at this table were born. I just want to point out again that dear so young and I'm so old, but you know I wrote a Ba thesis at the university Chicago at ninety two on: U S saudi relations and Saudi Arabia was what we think of IRAN being today. Saudi Arabia was an ear. It was a wildly rat cool anti western regime using it whatever power it had to screw up our economies with two oil, embargoes, and seventy three and seventy nine was so idiot logically implacably end and empta theological, implacably hostile to two is
real, that it was single handedly, paying basically for the Palestinians, the pillow and all palestinian and arab. Resist to war against the state. Israel? It was a threat. It was considered an existential threat to Israel when it wanted to buy anti radar aircraft from the United, states in nineteen eighty one this was a huge political shoot inside. The United States at the factory gave birth to the modern, a pack the american Israel public Affairs way which existed before but which had will whose impotence. In the face of this a wax deal. A nineteen eighty one created the new idea of lobbying Congress, rather than working with the administration, to try to change and influence american foreign policy to be less anti Israel, which, by the way, have been Republican party was then, whereas the Democratic Party was very lined up with Israel, and this is now flipped
entirely. So Saudi Arabia was toward is Israel what IRAN, as it was, the existential threat that sought the destruction of Israel for theological and rail politic reasons as a rallying cry for its own arab street inside its cut, you know, is a business as a cudgeled waves rallying support inside me. Tree and, of course, they funded and then and then the other issue of its anti western leanings. Right. They funded the were hobby, Madras has the Bin Laden, Osama Bin Laden and fifteen of the mighty I jockers were saudi and we, you know we read the whirlwind from the radicalization of the south, a youth in the form of Bin Laden and his Al Qaeda, so the idea that, in that thirty two year old Royal
inside the Euro inside the Saudi. You know, sir, but what he would when you court autocracy. It emerges as a pro western kind. zionist figure seeking to change the balance of power in the Middle EAST with an effective saudi Egyptian. is really alliance against Shia Overreach is it's not the Berlin Wall falling, because that was the liberation of hundreds of millions of people all at once, but it's pretty close it holds. We don't know whether Mohammed been Sultan. Is survive this you know unbelievably far reaching and seemingly reckless multi front. or against his own family tree and serve liberate
and they sort of laws of liberation inside savvy Raby as liberating women, and this kind of weird total sea change in policy. But if he does, we are, we are in a. We are in a new world that something cracked open here. I think it also says something that he feels safe enough having to do safe enough. To do this, I mean, above among Saudis, I mean it today that the setting up and is not responsible and ran to to its people, its at its at Santa there's, no sort of very far from direct MA prosy plan, but to reach the even be but to have it out. There is something while the alternative is that he doesn't feel especially say that this is a very risky gambit and just based on the actions it's taken domestically suggests that he understands the risk, but the threat of
The real conflict here is such that is necessary to take that risk through the celebrations over. This are gonna likely be a little bit muted because, as all feels like prelude than the underlying issue here? Is this tech tonic clash between the Shi Ites forces, which are headquarters in Tehran and have alliances? with state and non state actors in Syria. In Lebanon and Iraq and most likely in the government of Iraq and twenty eighteen and rest I mean the Russia and Malaysia, and these Many states, the locusts being cut RO in Riyadh and Washington and the extent to which the palestinian conflict has become less of an issue and more of a thorn in the side and sudden. There needs to be wrapped up ahead of something that could be much bigger. Look
the simple fact? The matter is that the Israel, Palestine, Israel, Palestine peace process is dead as dead as a doornail. It has had no life to it for eight or nine years. It somehow been revived in part because of some version of trumpets and. again said- maybe stuff going on in Saudi Arabia at all that, but this. But the fact of the matter is that the Palestinians prove themselves not only an unworthy interlocutor, we're having been twice or three times handed a pretty good deal for peace, that they rejected and even started wars as result of having been have had an offer them rejected, but that they are commonly ineffectual force. You now lives in too far has failed the to Gaza. Wars failed to Mr Israel. The palace the issue is now weigh down on the list of important matters inside
Israel? Where is it? Was the bleeding issue for Israel and the dealing with its problems with the Palestinians was the number one issue for more than thirty years and now, for example, like a rock is hard. Bigger issue then, then the than the West Bank. It will remain a huge issue, no matter what happens in the western left. There, then is this: will not change that take at all will arise or waters can do whatever. I know, but that's the big joke. So we have we have. We got Theory have the Saudi Arabia and the United States announcing a peace plan that involves the declaration of a palestinian state on the West Bank and Gaza. With with you now, with these efforts, thing that we have assumed would be the result of final negotiations because Israel not giving up. You know you know, cities that are built.
Large scale cities that are built on territory that is actually literally part of Jerusalem, is down the street. From though it they're called settlement so. The idea was in final status negotiations in the end, Israel would get this area the palace ends. We had that area there, we knock it so they. So it's like here's the deal, take it or leave it. So the Palestinians will say will leave it and The western left will say will leave it, but that's it it's all. That is, if that happens, if we have a major funding power of the Palestinian Authority. The plea that the people of begs kept this time as it in as an entity going for like forty fifty years of vague. If they say, ok, we were her hands of you good, bye palestinian issue, I mean this is a problem for Israel cuz. What is it going to do? How is it going to deal with the growing calcium population on the West Bank and Gaza, but none the less like the west
I can go, can can have resolution after resolution do stuff at the Hague All of that it will be meaningless. what will Peter by now say that he'll be here. They'll say it's all Israel's fathers and this is really weakness, but once again harassed now washing its hands the thing and they have Hamas regards never masses Gaza, but they don't have Hamas in the West Bank and they have Hezbollah in Lebanon, Nano I'm not saying that it's all gonna be Pacific. I'm just saying that the that this is the end of that harassed, subsides, Riah weed A whole lot of time to cheer know Joe there's an existential threat from Teheran sitting there, that's one of the reasons like in the end. It turns out, you know,
some bombs going off for beauty. Somebody stabbing you in the street in Jerusalem is not as bad as the possibility of having a nuclear bomb detonated over television. So we were talking about this before the break and I kind of, as I don't really know, a lot about the the internal politics in the West Bank. Is that what's fatigue gonna do? Are they going to sit around and wait for the left? Have a kickstarter campaign for them, or are they going to turn to willing more willing funding apparatus and in the Middle EAST they they are. extremely unimaginative, clip talker c, and they do. They will do what extremely unimaginative club theocracies do, which is their old and tired and useless, and- and
competent- and the only thing they now have to do is abuse their own people to stay in power. If you think they have international negotiating prowess, they don't so you know, that's that's my take. The other thing. That's interesting is that a baby Netanyahu we keep reading is about to get indicted in for various forms of than that domestic malfeasance, including to the management of household the possibility that that there was
Sweetheart deal made on an oil field with a cousin of his. Nonetheless, he sits there unpopular been there a long time may be too long. All of that, and yet he may have under his belt the single greatest diplomatic achievement in the history of the country without question, without exception with Noah. You know it wit without qualification and the questions. What they're gonna indict him with the Saudis almost on the verge of accepting the liquid peace plan. Like I my again my mind can't take in the caught the complexities of this like this visit. If anything will end up being in,
a kind of historical endorsement of the Netanyahu Prime Minister ship. This change sea change and taking advantage of the sea change, as he apparently has by making concert with Mohammed, been summoned such to the point that he accepts the liquid peace proposal. Just is you know But this is like this is not Dixon dislike Nixon going to China and that China going democratic like that, that's what it's like he wakes up with that non, crushing veracity habit that look at a cheerful happy talk that we concluded because its aims birthday
because of an ancient they, because the world is a brighter place today, because of his aims has responded with some Skift so till later in the week for a green wall, the birthday boy nor Rossman, millennial and Sorrow Marie their child at the table, I am, I am old man John put words and keep the camel.
Transcript generated on 2020-11-05.