Trump's Jerusalem move to fulfill campaign promise to Jewish donors
Former counter-terrorism specialist and military intelligence officer of the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Philip Giraldi said Donald Trump fulfills a promise to very wealthy Jewish contributors to his campaign, adding Benjamin Netanyahu wanted it and Trump is seen as someone who listens to Netanyahu.
Giraldi stressed that Israelis would like a war in the region, noting that Israelis may attack Iranian sites in Syria hoping to draw reactions and response of Iran because they are sure if this happens the United States will get involved and will take Israel's side.
Following is the full text of Philip Giraldi's interview with Mehr News correspondent Lachin Rezaian, on the sidelines of the last day of the 6th International Conference of Independent Thinkers and Artists (New Horizon):
How do you evaluate the possibility of war in the region after US JCPOA pullout?
Well, that’s a complicated question. I think the Israelis would like a war in the region. I think what they will do is that they will make attacks on Iranians in Syria. And they are hoping that Iran would then respond. And possibly the United States will get involved and will take Israel's side. But I think they would be a little bit cautious because I don’t think that United States is ready to go to war with anyone and I believe that the politics of JCPOA is still continuing. The Europeans are very upset and angry about what the US did. And I think they might make it difficult for Donald trump and the make efforts to improve the situation.
You said that Europeans are angry with Trump. Do you think Iran can trust them in continuing commitment to JCPOA?
I think yes they can. They can continue with it. They will get the support of Russia and china too. So they have the possibility of doing this and they at least can break the US politically and very sharply. And I am not sure they are prepared to do that. Again as I said this is a developing situation I think you will know that in a week or at most in a month.
So you think JCPOA can survive without US?
In a form I think JCPOA can continue. It depends on what the US decides to do if the Germans, or the British, or the French decide to trade with Iran and if so maybe the US would take steps to punish them and that is a cripple question; well it can continue but it depends on the US not going after the people that are trying to trade with Iran and we don’t know right now what is going to happen.
What do you think about the relocation of US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem? Do you think this move is because of “give and take” policy between the two countries or US does that based on its national interests?
Well, the move of the embassy to Jerusalem is not for US national interests. That is not the issue. The issue is Donald Trump fulfilling a promise to very wealthy Jewish contributors to his campaign. Their names are Sheldon Gary Adelson, Bernard Marcus, Paul Singer, and these people are big contributors and they are expected to be big contributors in the elections coming so Donald trump to respond to them he also he did it because Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel wanted it and Trump is seen as someone who listens to Netanyahu.
What do you think about the role of Saudi Arabia in provoking US to make the decision?
Saudi Arabia certainly was in the decision but I think they played major role. I think even for Saudis Jerusalem is a holy spot so I think they said yes but in private and secretly.
How do you evaluate the role that Muslim countries can play in confronting this decision?
Well, Muslim countries through the organizations have already condemned this and I think they should keep condemning it and they should put pressure on the Saudis, in particular, to join the group and make serious their complaint and also the Muslim countries that are friendly with Israel should put pressure on Israel, like Jordanians and Egyptians.
Philip Giraldi is a former counter-terrorism specialist and military intelligence officer of the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and a columnist and television commentator who is the Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest.
Interview by Lachin Rezaian (mehrnews)