Brad Johnson speaks to Iranian attack on Saudi oil industry. Americans for Intelligence Reform.

For the entire transcript of this interview, please continue reading.

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Brad Johnson it is September the 18th to

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2019 and something interesting happened

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in the Middle East which I think is

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going to be difficult to play by those

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same rules of the last few months up to

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now in the way it looks like just as an

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armchair observer is that Iran has been

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trying to create for its enemies what

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will be seen as a casus belli in order

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for their own people to feel they’ve

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been victimized when they get a return

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attack like when they took down a drone

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they were expecting an American attack

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would consolidate the power in Iran the

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Americans were smart enough to say they

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didn’t kill anybody so we’re basically

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not going to respond and Iran’s been

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escalating ever since and what looks

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like I mean they have controlled the

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information at home so their own people

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don’t know what they did but they will

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know what happens as a response I mean

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that’s how I’m reading it anyway

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so now what they did is using a series

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of drone attacks took out 50% of Saudi

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Arabia’s oil refining capabilities our

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or or production capabilities either way

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50% of the only industry Saudi Arabia

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has has been destroyed by Iran’s proxy

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the Houthi and I don’t think anyone’s

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fooled by thinking it’s a bunch of

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bearded weirdies and pajamas from Yemen

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with these sophisticated coordinated

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drone attacks so my question is I mean

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feel speak about this any way you want

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that my question is how can we play this

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like this isn’t worthy of a response

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well yeah very interesting question I

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think you’re hitting hang on the center

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of it I mean just and and my little bit

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on leading into this is yeah there’s

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been some circuits that have out of

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Yemen that have claimed that they’ve

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done it and others that may have been

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involved but all of the groups all are

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supported and run by Iran so even if

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it’s even if it was one of the surrogate

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groups like the Hutus out of Yemen and

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or something I mean they they don’t just

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do that on their own they didn’t get the

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equipment in training you know on the

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internet they they they were given this

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stuff by Iran and shown how to use it

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and told to go do it so no matter how

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you slice it that’s the

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the origin of it is Iran now and kind of

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what to do and this this there’s a of

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course always a number of factors but I

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kind of sticking with the cause for a

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moment rather than our reaction here in

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the United States you know the the the

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situation with Iran essentially hasn’t

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changed I mean they’ve been under

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sanctions for decades off and on at

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different levels but they’re reacting

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differently this time then they have it

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all of those previous you know like I

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say decades of of these sorts of things

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going on ever since they came to power

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under the this regime with the Khomeini

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and so on

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during the Jimmy Carter days we’ve used

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sanctions as a tool against them to try

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and control them but their reactions are

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much stronger now and I would say this

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is kind of one of those just an

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alignment of motivations by different

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people and you so you have these

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subgroups that are the surrogates of

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Iran that you know want to stand out and

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do stuff and so therefore get more money

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in support for their little fiefdom Iran

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now they have a couple of problems one

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of it is there’s just this

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ever-increasing sentiment on the part of

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the people to get rid of the regime

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they’ve never been all of that popular

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and it’s it’s declined since they came

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to power and the Iranian people are a

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people that have their own history and

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many things prior to their to their this

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regime is taking of power like 51 or 52

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percent of all doctors in Iran and back

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in those days under the Shah were women

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and they could drive and wore western

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clothes and had everything I mean it was

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a normal country with a booming economy

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all many of those people that lived that

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are still alive so it’s it’s still in

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the memory of those people they want it

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back you know because life was way

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better than is more safe and just a lot

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better in every way so that memory is

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there so they’ve got this domestic

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problem and you alluded to this and

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touched on it and and so they’ve always

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got to do things for their domestic

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audience

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but and I’m much of this is that so

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that’s I think part of why Iran is so

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involved with this but I think beyond

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that there also be encouraged to a new

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degree and then as people analyze this

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and talk about it one of the elements

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they always forget is China now China is

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in a very serious problem with the

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United States in the West as well

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negotiations are not going the way they

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want and they’ve got problems in Hong

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Kong

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they’ve got that same domestic problem

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where they’re essentially ruling against

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the will of their people like the

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Iranian regime is their ruling against

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the will of their people and it’s clear

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in China that that’s a problem and so

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they’ve instigated a lot of things to

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tamp down on the population including 50

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million cameras on every streets

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including little villages across China

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just to keep an eye on everybody and

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what they’re doing and facial

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recognition and all those things this is

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an organ of control over the population

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that China is implementing so with their

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economy beginning to shrink a lot of

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economic problems the the flow of money

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coming in has been cut off because of

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Trump negotiating with them fairly tough

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you know being fairly tough with them in

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negotiations they’ve got problems so

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they don’t want direct conflict with the

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United States they know they can’t win

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economically they know they can’t win

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militarily so they have to act out

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through surrogates and one of their

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surrogates or I may be partners would be

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a better word is Iran so I think China

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is looking for ways to create world

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problems as well and in order to

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pressure Trump and take his you know eye

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off the ball with China if you will and

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and create trouble perhaps get him to

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lose the next election those sorts of

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things so this is all playing out in

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favor of China as well so I I don’t I

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think everyone should keep in mind that

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they’re a major factor in this Iran

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their different behavior now compared to

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decades of previous behavior the only

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difference between now and then is China

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and they’re also in that problem so I

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think they’ve joined together look at

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this similarly it plays to both of their

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domestic bases if you will less China

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more Iran in that sense but still it

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shows you all United States is in

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trouble the

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doing this and for them to provoke a war

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with Iran you know they don’t give a

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damn that’s good for them and and I

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think you ran you know they don’t really

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care about that sort of thing either

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they view that as you know just one more

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thing if we strike and destroy some base

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of theirs or something like that that

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place well domestically for them because

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they can show this terrible enemy doing

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these terrible things so it all of that

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plays into this situation and like I

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said these things are just lined up so

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that we have a much much much more

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difficult and belligerent situation with

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Iran right now and this is one of the

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ways they can act it out of course Iran

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and Saudi Arabia already hate each other

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so it it works out in just a number of

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ways it’s all kind of fits together

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beautifully now the other half of it and

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the basis of your original question was

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what’s going to happen as a result now

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we’ve just seen john bolton who was

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saying regime change in Iran and that

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was one of the reasons that he kind of

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lost the confidence of the president is

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because he kept that was one of the

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things that John Bolton pushed was a

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regime regime change now zero-sum game

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the way that John Bolton looked at it is

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what’s the best thing for national

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security United States of America well

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having a new democratic hopefully form

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of government in Iran that represents

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the people and you know wants peace and

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trade and all of that is way better for

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the entire world and certainly way

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better for the United States of America

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so that’s how he viewed it zero-sum this

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is what we need to do and his

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methodology was direct I mean Bolton

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famously a kind of a direct guy so

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whatever he was suggesting was of a

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direct nature now that’s not Trump so it

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brings us to today what is our reaction

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gonna be against Iran very interesting

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if you listen closely what to talk to

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what President Trump says and even

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though he’s constantly accused of lying

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president Trump’s a fairly

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straightforward direct man himself and I

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I don’t I think he very very rarely

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actually lies and what he’s saying on

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this is fairly straightforward revealing

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of what he really thinks and wants to do

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and you notice what he has said well yes

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I mean we’re locked and loaded we can do

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things against Iran if we find out that

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it’s actually you know directly them and

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we can confirm all this then yes we can

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take steps against Iran

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now just if you follow that out and kind

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of take this context that I’ve already

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given with China out there I think

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now all this information of course is

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what anything I know I’m sure president

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knows 10 times over so an N can has

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people that can figure this stuff out

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for him with him and so on and I think

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he recognizes that this is not just Iran

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operating only on its own so striking

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back at just Iran doesn’t necessarily

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make sense and again another thing the

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president’s accused of being as being

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like war monger sort of guy but he’s not

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he’s kind of the opposite of that he

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wants to negotiate it’s his style and

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it’s his strength and he knows that so

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he’s constantly trying to play to his

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strengths which I go back again to China

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and he’s been masterful at that he’s

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just done a you know kick kick rear end

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job on on dealing with China’s nobody

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else has been able to do that he’s the

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first that’s ever been able to really

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get this going

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and the Chinese not understanding how to

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deal with him or lashing out and Iran

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agrees with them at this and so it’s

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something where it’s kind of a

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partnership made in heaven from their

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perspective that they’re both trying to

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achieve their goals through through

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acting out with these belligerent means

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you know the the drone strikes in Saudi

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Arabia and the things are doing to

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tankers and all of that all of this is

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one big thing and President Trump is is

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looking for a non warlike response to

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this trying to figure out how to do it

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and if you look at what he’s done when a

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US drone was shot down he had a very

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measured response and he understands

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this is not just an isolated little

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thing just Iran one guy giving the

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orders acting out sort of thing this is

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a conglomerate of different people with

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motives that happen to coincide working

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together so I think his response is

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going to be measured in that sense and I

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think that’s what we’re gonna see he’s

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probably going to additionally put

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pressure on China I think he’s going to

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do additional pressure economic type

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sanctions on Iran and if he does any

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sort of strike it’s going to be fairly

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controlled and limited because he

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understands I mean you’re you’re you’re

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you’re striking at you know just a

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little a little part of the problem and

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not the not the cause so III think he

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just views it as you know we’re not

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gonna go to war with China over this

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we’re not gonna go full-blown war with

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Iran over this

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so therefore what do you do how do you

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negotiate your way out of it so that’s

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the analysis that’s going on right now

0:11:16.130,0:11:19.130
at the White House that’s what they’re

0:11:17.690,0:11:22.130
discussing they’re still bringing in all

0:11:19.130,0:11:23.570
the facts to take a look at you know who

0:11:22.130,0:11:25.070
the who they can prove did what but

0:11:23.570,0:11:27.710
still he understands the alignment

0:11:25.070,0:11:30.320
that’s taking place behind all of this

0:11:27.710,0:11:32.570
and what what do you think the South I

0:11:30.320,0:11:35.360
mean the salaries okay I accept all that

0:11:32.570,0:11:38.300
math okay but the Saudis in the meantime

0:11:35.360,0:11:40.490
have lost 50% of the one industry they

0:11:38.300,0:11:42.640
have and these are people that don’t

0:11:40.490,0:11:46.250
take not getting a new roles every year

0:11:42.640,0:11:47.990
very easily so what do you see these

0:11:46.250,0:11:50.750
guys doing in response I mean are they

0:11:47.990,0:11:52.280
gonna call in a debt from Pakistan or

0:11:50.750,0:11:54.800
you know what kind of equipment they

0:11:52.280,0:11:57.890
have is it possible that the Americans

0:11:54.800,0:12:00.470
could equip the Saudis to act on their

0:11:57.890,0:12:04.550
own defense and do a strike back on Iran

0:12:00.470,0:12:06.260
you could see it yeah you could see it I

0:12:04.550,0:12:08.750
mean there’s a problem shaping up in

0:12:06.260,0:12:10.040
Egypt that a lot of this is there’s

0:12:08.750,0:12:11.600
different reasons for it but there’s

0:12:10.040,0:12:14.150
different pressures coming on different

0:12:11.600,0:12:15.920
Arab countries like the Saudis like in

0:12:14.150,0:12:19.340
Egypt where you can see some sort of

0:12:15.920,0:12:23.900
willingness to strike at Iran through

0:12:19.340,0:12:25.430
them and actually that would be a good

0:12:23.900,0:12:27.890
way if you will in the scheme of things

0:12:25.430,0:12:29.900
to go about this rather than the United

0:12:27.890,0:12:31.850
States taking direct action and

0:12:29.900,0:12:33.620
encouraged them there’s always Israel –

0:12:31.850,0:12:36.080
Israel has been very worried about the

0:12:33.620,0:12:37.670
Iranian nuclear program for a long time

0:12:36.080,0:12:41.150
and trying to take out some of these

0:12:37.670,0:12:44.090
places you know would would be something

0:12:41.150,0:12:46.310
that Israel has wanted to do and has

0:12:44.090,0:12:48.650
talked about doing for a long time so

0:12:46.310,0:12:50.660
maybe some sort of joint strike getting

0:12:48.650,0:12:53.390
a coalition together to do something to

0:12:50.660,0:12:55.760
strike back at Iran I mean something

0:12:53.390,0:12:57.710
along those lines strikes me as

0:12:55.760,0:12:59.930
something that would appeal to President

0:12:57.710,0:13:01.610
Trump so I wouldn’t be surprised to see

0:12:59.930,0:13:03.920
a kind of a measured response of that

0:13:01.610,0:13:05.480
nature where you have a coalition of

0:13:03.920,0:13:07.550
countries I think you know Kuwait and

0:13:05.480,0:13:09.710
Saudi Arabia would would be interested

0:13:07.550,0:13:11.720
and probably you know at least a handful

0:13:09.710,0:13:13.010
of others perhaps Israel as well but

0:13:11.720,0:13:14.900
wouldn’t it be something to see Saudi

0:13:13.010,0:13:17.840
Arabia and Israel cooperate on something

0:13:14.900,0:13:20.050
like that I you know it would be just an

0:13:17.840,0:13:23.560
interesting way to respond and and

0:13:20.050,0:13:25.630
something that’s kind of that flavor of

0:13:23.560,0:13:28.000
negotiation if you will because I’ve got

0:13:25.630,0:13:29.620
a coalition response so I would not be

0:13:28.000,0:13:30.339
surprised to see something along those

0:13:29.620,0:13:32.830
lines

0:13:30.339,0:13:34.390
be done and I can almost certainly

0:13:32.830,0:13:36.700
guarantee you that something along those

0:13:34.390,0:13:38.050
lines is is being kicked around and

0:13:36.700,0:13:40.570
that’s part of why the response is

0:13:38.050,0:13:42.670
taking time it’s because all of this is

0:13:40.570,0:13:44.380
being looked at so yeah Saudi Arabia’s

0:13:42.670,0:13:45.820
gonna want to try and do something and

0:13:44.380,0:13:47.740
they’re gonna now they’re gonna get back

0:13:45.820,0:13:49.810
online fairly quickly I think they’ll be

0:13:47.740,0:13:52.570
able to repair and replace equipment and

0:13:49.810,0:13:54.610
so on so it’s not a permanent blow but

0:13:52.570,0:13:56.500
it is a big blow and it’s something they

0:13:54.610,0:14:00.300
were fully clearly unprepared to deal

0:13:56.500,0:14:03.010
with Saudi Arabia’s military is limited

0:14:00.300,0:14:04.660
so they’re also going to be limited in

0:14:03.010,0:14:06.579
what they can do which is again why I’m

0:14:04.660,0:14:10.060
kind of suggesting a coalition style

0:14:06.579,0:14:12.010
response just because like I say their

0:14:10.060,0:14:13.690
military is limited in its capability in

0:14:12.010,0:14:15.850
training and equipment and so on they

0:14:13.690,0:14:18.040
have some pretty good fighter aircraft

0:14:15.850,0:14:20.620
they’re not course nowhere near as well

0:14:18.040,0:14:24.100
trying to say US pilots or the most of

0:14:20.620,0:14:25.480
the western pilots so it would it would

0:14:24.100,0:14:26.829
have to be something I think where they

0:14:25.480,0:14:28.630
would do it in conjunction with other

0:14:26.829,0:14:30.250
people so that I would not be surprised

0:14:28.630,0:14:32.170
if something right along those lines

0:14:30.250,0:14:34.630
kind of what you were hinting at there

0:14:32.170,0:14:36.640
would be the would be the long term or

0:14:34.630,0:14:40.230
you know the actual final response out

0:14:36.640,0:14:40.230
of this out of this attack

0:14:46.100,0:14:48.160
you

 

 

 

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