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Panel-discussion-30 June 2017-Paris

Panel-discussion-30 June 2017-Paris (5)

Joseph Lieberman, former US Senator and Vice Presidential candidate, addressing the panel on “Policy review on Iran” in Paris on June 30, 2017. Moderator was Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield, distinguished fellow and Chairman Emeritus at the Stimson Center, former Assistant Secretary of State for Military Affairs.

Remarks by Senator Lieberman follow:

Thanks, it's great to be back here. As we gather here for this annual coming together of what I would call the forces of fighting for freedom for the people of Iran, I think we can have some sense of optimism that events are moving in the direction of our moral cause.

 And I say that both because of events external to Iran and also what's happening in Iran. The first but I think very significant change is the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States. 

 I supported Hillary Clinton so understand that I'm speaking about the policy toward Iran and the Middle East. Because for the last eight years, we had an administration in Washington whose policy toward the east was to have a kind of benign, a friendly relationship with our traditional allies, Israel, and the Arab world, but to be focused on Iran. To be focused and trying to improve our relations with Iran, frankly, almost regardless of what Iran was doing.

 And it was targeted at the Iran nuclear agreement, which of course most of it, I speak for myself, was a bad agreement, based on all that we had all put into sanctions and the rest. It didn't end the Iranian nuclear program; it gave it an enormous amount of cash. And it was, as somebody else has said, transactional. It was a kind of a deal, it wasn't transformational.

 In fact, nothing about Iran's behavior has changed in a couple of years since the Iran nuclear agreement was signed, it continues to be, by a judgment of the US State Department, the government in the world that most supports terrorism.

 It continues to feed and fuel warfare and terrible human suffering throughout the region. All of which is aimed at extending its own power. I'm speaking about obviously Syria, from Syria to Yemen and a lot of places in between and beyond that.

 So from this administration of the previous eight years which was, if I might say, Iran centered, nothing has ended up being changed, we've come to administration where President Trump has quite clearly said two things. One is, essentially we know who our friends are in the Middle East and we know who our enemies are. And our enemies are Iran. We're not making that up, all you have to do is to listen to the Supreme Leader and others, "death to America". The Islamic state that is our second enemy.

And we have friends in the Middle East and those are the Gulf Arab countries and Israel.

 And I hope as a policy review that the administration is doing all of its policy on Iran, we also acknowledge more explicitly that we have another group of friends, and allies in the Middle East and that is the people of Iran. And that is their resistance to the regime in Iran which is represented by the organizations that come together for this weekend. Inside Iran, there are changes occurring. And the fact is the economy is still terrible. One thing that has not changed is that the Supreme Leader and the IRGC are still in ultimate control.

 But when the Supreme Leader decides who runs for president, and approves Rouhani before he could run, you have to ask how independent he will be.

 And yet now as you may have seen if you've been following recent days and weeks in Iran, Rouhani has actually begun to say some independent things and the Supreme Leader recently warned Rouhani and said that he should keep in mind that he could be sent into exile the way previous leaders presumably, thinking of Bani Sadr, were.

 So I take this to be a sign of instability in Iran and the other part of it, is, of course, the more open expression of support for the resistance including for the MEK, specifically around the unprecedented public discussion in the last year or so of the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in Iran. Most of whom were MEK members in 1988. It's a remarkable bold thing to be talking about publicly. Obviously, it requires using the South African example: a Truth Commission.

 Don't expect it from this government but the very fact that people are demanding it now says that there is the kind of unrest that can lead to the ultimate answer to this problem, which is the end of the regime in Iran.

 Thank you. 

 

John Baird, former Foreign Minister of Canada, addressing the panel on “Policy review on Iran” in Paris on June 30, 2017. Moderator was Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield, distinguished fellow and Chairman Emeritus at the Stimson Center, former Assistant Secretary of State for Military Affairs.

Remarks by John Baird follow:

Thank you very much for having me. I think we need to speak with greater moral clarity on the threat that this regime poses, not just to the Iranian people itself, each and every day to its neighbors. I completely reject the previous US administration’s leadership trying to engage and appease at all cost, I think that sends a terrible message to the people of Iran. 

I think if you look at the whole notion of Rouhani as a moderate and the propagation of that myth, not just by the lobbyists for the mullahs and the regime but frankly by a lot of Western leaders, a lot of Western governments. I can remember being in the Canadian parliament and getting a question from the Liberal Party in opposition, saying whether we're going to work with the newly elected government in Iran and then I said it was illegitimate and they were gassed. And I said how could any presidential election be legitimate when the number one, 51% of the population weren't even allowed to stand for election, let alone having to be you know endorsed by a panel of the mullahs to even stand as a candidate. So I think, first and foremost we need to speak with greater moral clarity. I think the terms of political discourse are tremendously important. And one final opening comment is, I've seen in the last five years, six years, so many people who I admire and respect, literally pushing people aside to try to embrace Rouhani when he first visited the U.N. as president, or the number of again people who I respect and admire you know, flying in to kiss the ring in Teheran with large business delegations. 

And I think frankly we must be a lot stronger than that, it's not all about the almighty dollar and about the advancement of a nation's commercial interests. The people of Iran are watching, they will remember. They will remember who stood by them and who lacked the strength and the courage of their convictions. 

Thank you very much. 

 

Bruno Tertrais, Deputy Director of the Fondation pour la Recherche Stratégique of France addressing the panel on “Policy review on Iran” in Paris on June 30, 2017, moderated by Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield, distinguished fellow and Chairman Emeritus at the Stimson Center, former Assistant Secretary of State for Military Affairs.

His remarks follow:

 It turns out that there’s not one single perspective about the Islamic Republic in Europe, in fact, there are many. But let me note one thing, to begin with. I find it very interesting that discussing the policies of the Islamic Republic has practically—it has almost left the public stage since the nuclear deal of 2015. There’s a lot of implicit thinking in Europe that goes along the lines of the problem solved. Problem solved. Now the problem is that a lot of it is in good faith. Many people on this continent including in this country believe that we have solved the Iranian problem, quote unquote, because the nuclear deal is supposed to be solved, Iran will be reintegrated with the international community, whatever that means. But that’s the usual, those are the usual words. And I think there is a lot of naivete in Europe about the Islamic Republic. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not referring to what people in the intelligence services or in the defense ministries or some foreign ministries who really look at Iran, including on the nuclear issue and know what they’re talking about, I’m talking about the broader policy (elite) debate. Even those who criticized the deal are often relieved or happy that we can quote unquote move on. Move on? Hey, after all it was supposed to be a win/win, we’re supposed to do business which is good and that business also supposed to help Iran becoming a “good citizen of the world”. So it’s a win/win, all right? And I insist on the fact that you may call this misguided thinking, but it’s pretty sincere. That’s the reason I call it naïve.

 Now, Iran’s message, the Islamic Republic’s message to Europe these days tends to be very simple. You Europeans have to step in. We can’t count on the United States. The Trump administration is out there to stop the implementation of the deal. You have to step in. Your banks have to guarantee the business of your firms with us. They’re pleading literally Europeans to—I’m using the word “step in” three times because I recently heard a high-level Iranian official use it. Now, is this going to work? I think that in European governments, I’m not talking about the policy elite at large, but in European governments, there’s still some sanity prevailing. Not everywhere, but I think that in this country in particular even though we are playing along with the deal, hey we’re a signatory to the deal, there are very few illusions about what’s possible to achieve with it. But what I find troubling is that so few people in my country and in Europe overall tend to see Iran as a problem for the region.

 The narrative over the past five years, well two years, in particular, has tended to be the following: We Europeans just like many other countries in the world are the victims of jihadi terrorism and the principal source of Jihadi terrorism are the Gulf monarchies. There goes the narrative. Therefore because of some stupid zero sum game in geopolitics, zero sum gaming is the zero degree of geopolitics. But that’s unfortunately still the way a lot of people see the situation in the Middle East or in many parts of the world. Therefore, if Saudi Arabia and Qatar and others are the problems, we have to get closer to Iran. Iran, after all, is close to being a democracy. Has been close to being a democracy for a long time, by the way, it’s like thinking about the future of North Korean regime, oh hey in ten years it will be a better place. As Bob reminded us, this is what people said in ’84, ’94, 2004, and 2014. It’s not getting a better place. Now Iran for all the talk about liberalization and moderation, what we see—and I don’t need to remind this audience—is that contrast between a very educated eager to see the world and get in touch with the world population and a deep state, a security apparatus which is as repressive as ever, and which unfortunately acts against European interests in the Middle East. This is what is really troubling is that this is something that a lot of people don’t see. Europeans tend to have short memories, unfortunately. We French sometimes forget, and again I’m not talking about people in the know, but French public opinion would be surprised if I reminded them how much we were victims of the Iranian-backed and Iranian-sponsored terrorism in the ‘80s, for instance, okay They don’t even remember that. Same regime, and sometimes same people by the way. They confuse moderation and pragmatism. They think that a pragmatic attitude is a moderate attitude. It’s a fundamental mistake. I accept the fact that some in the Iranian system, not necessarily the most powerful people today but at least some powerful figures, are acting as a source of pragmatism. Pragmatism is not moderation. You can maintain the same ideology as a backbone and from a tactical standpoint but with the same objectives act differently. So this is what I find troubling. I view Iran in the Middle East as being the arsonist turned fireman, and there’s a lot to be said about Iranian responsibility indirectly for the rise of Sunni jihadi terrorism, okay? This is something that you don’t often hear unfortunately in this country or in Europe. To his credit, President Macron, since we’re in France and I’m French, has not at this point in time I think has not said anything or acted in a way which would seem to imply that he’s naïve about the situation. I don’t know what he thinks, I just notice that Foreign Minister Zarif was hosted yesterday for a brief working visit in the Elysee this morning. Maybe it’s Mr. Zarif’s plane that we can hear over there. Hope it doesn’t crash, not here, it may crash. But that visit was not publicized in a way that seems to imply any kind of political messaging. So it’s difficult to say what President Macron’s policies vis a vis Iran will be. But knowing what kind of character he is, I would be very surprised if he had the same kind of naivete that I denounced earlier on.

 

 

 

General Jack Keane, Rtd. General, former Vice Chief of Staff of the US Army addressing the panel on “Policy review on Iran” in Paris on June 30, 2017, moderated by Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield, distinguished fellow and Chairman Emeritus at the Stimson Center, former Assistant Secretary of State for Military Affairs.

General Keane’s remarks follow:

I chair the Institute for the Study of War, it’s a think tank in Washington D.C., and we pay very close attention every single day to what is happening where conflict is in the Middle East and also to what Russia is doing. To talk about Iran, I think for me I’m a national security strategist, that’s what I do, so I look at things in the context of the contours of change that have taken place in the world. And there’s a number of them out there. Just to mention a couple we start with the Middle East.

We know that the Middle East is a fractured region. It has a number of failed states now, five. It’s the breeding ground for radical Islam. ISIS, the fastest growing terrorist organization in the history of mankind. Grew from several hundred fighters in 2012, by 2014, thirty thousand. Most of those were foreign fighters, they were not Iraqis which gave birth to the initial group. They spread to 30 countries. We’re tracking every single year terrorist deaths and the terrorist death count is now close to 30,000 on an annual basis. That’s five times greater than what it was ten years ago. 

In the Middle East also, Iran is seeking to dominate the region, as we all know, impose their will and influence on Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and Yemen. At the same time they’re supporting insurgencies in just about every Sunni Arab state that is in the region. And the backdrop for what is happening in the Middle East is another contour of change that’s taken place in the world. And while we began what’s called the post-Cold War period in 1991 with the collapse of the Soviet Union, lasted for about 25 years. In those 25 years we saw the United States as a primacy country, because the world’s only superpower. We had significant economic and military superiority during that period. And despite the rise of terrorism, despite humanitarian crisis, and Milosevic fighting four wars and losing all four of them in Europe, there was really no major threat to the international liberated order as we know it in the world. Today that has fundamentally changed. Russia and China are making assaults on the liberated international order as we know it. We are back in the world of great power competition. And you can only understand what is happening in Iran and the Middle East, you have to understand that struggle because it is going to be a larger struggle and it is going to impact the world as it has in the past. So the post-Cold War period that began in 1991 is over. That’s the reality of it. During this period of time American and European political will and moral courage and exercising leadership was significantly eroded, which gave encouragement for the rise of Russia and China to begin to impose their will at least internationally and eventually globally. Russia is attempting to become the most influential country in the Middle East, a status that the United States exclusively held. That’s from outside the region. China wants to dominate Asia and the Pacific and it has reversed the regional order to its favor. Not only that, they’re seeking to be on a par with the United States in terms of global domination and eventually they believe they will be the preeminent country in the world as they combine their very robust economy, eventually number one economy, with their preeminent development of military power. History lesson that they have learned from who? United States. 

So those are the contours of change and things that are happening to us that impact how we think about Iran. The United States, which I can talk to a little bit more clarity about, I’ll leave the European situation to Europeans, but the United States has gone through an identity crisis in the last number of years. Identity crisis over are we an exceptional country or not? We had guilt feelings about past policy failures disproportionately to what we normally have. Countries make mistakes just like Europeans do. You usually learn from them and move on. But we had trouble with that. So much so that those feelings about America and people began to have some doubts about it ushered in a political outsider who is espousing national populism, and the only one truly doing it in the campaign among republicans and certainly a Democrat, advocating a major change. And as a result of that the main components of that campaign was to make America great again, as you well know, and America first. That resonated with an American population to a degree that we have a new president who is a complete outsider with no internal political experience or foreign policy experience, which is not unusual for American presidents. Most of them come to that office without much foreign policy experience. 

Let me just say a couple things about this administration as I was offered to being a part of it and for personal reasons I could not, so I’ve had discussions with this president, one lengthy and one not so lengthy, and then a number of discussions with his national security team. Let me just say this about him, in discussing national security and foreign policy he recognizes that this is an area where he doesn’t know much about. So he is a very good listener, has excellent questions about it and has a thirst to learn and grow in an area where he has no knowledge. Certainly his strength as an American leader is one is in leadership and two is dealing with the economy and what needs to be done there. But secondly, and I think it says something about him is that he selected a very strong national security team around him. Many of us who have been observing this for years apolitically, and I’m speaking apolitically here—I provided advice to Clinton for ten years as a national security advisor, although I totally disagree with her politics. That can be attributed. And I provided advice to four or five Republican candidates who were running in this last time on national security, so I try to be apolitical when I make these comments. But this national security team is it’s excellent. They have experience, they have knowledge, and they have some confidence about themselves and doing it. So give them some credit for that. There is no national security or foreign policy strategy from this administration yet. I don’t think there’s a Trump doctrine. And they are developing national security strategy, they’re writing it as I speak. But what has happened in the first five or six months of the administration, I told this to the president, I said listen, no matter what domestic agenda you have that’s going to be sidelined to a certain degree because the world comes to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Its problems come to your doorstep. And it happened to every single president from World War II on to the present. And it takes you off some of your agenda. And that began almost immediately. So here, I think what has evolved, if you watch the policy and you watch the actions that are taking place, this is my personal view of what is happening, is that President Trump is returning American leadership to the world stage as a global leader seeking stability, security and prosperity. It is a traditional and historical role that every single president we have had since World War II advocated, whether they be Democratic or Republican, except for one. And that happened to be our last president. The second thing that is happening, he has sent his government officials, and he’s done it himself, to reassure our allies that the United States is going to exercise a leadership role. We will partner with you and if we’re in an alliance with you will stand by that alliance and if we’re not in an alliance with you can count on us as a strategic partner. In other words, in American words, we’ve got your back. He sent Mattis to the Far East on the third day that Mattis was in office, to reassure South Korea and Japanese that we are going to change the policy dealing with North Korea. We will reject the policy of strategic patience of the previous administration and we are willing to confront the North Koreans and we are willing to put pressure on the Chinese. He sent his emissaries, Vice President Pence, Secretary of Defense Mattis, Secretary of State Tillerson, and the Secretary of Homeland Security Kelly, to Europe to do much the same thing. Tillerson and Mattis have been here on multiple occasions now with the same issue. We’re in NATO, we’re not leaving NATO, we want you to pay your fair share, we’ve got your back, we understand Russia is confronting us in this region here and we are going to deal with it despite all the political hype in the United States about Russia and the administration, all the rest of this. Judge them by what they are doing and what they are saying and what actions they are doing. And then finally, he chooses—much to my surprise—he chooses the Middle East as his first place to visit. It is an historic visit. In a room larger than this he had 55 leaders in that room. And he made a couple of significant points to them. He said, number one, we’re going to stand together against the threats in this region. The number one strategic threat in the region is Iran who is imposing their will on this region, and we will stand together and we will stand against that threat. We will counter that threat. Now that is a reversal 100% of a policy of accommodation and appeasement of Iran by his predecessor. That’s a total rejection of that policy. 

Second thing he said, the second threat here is radical Islam, he used Islamic extremism as the word, you know what I’m talking about here regardless of what words we’re using. And he said we need to do a number of things here. One, you need to drive it out of your mosque, drive it out of your education centers, drive it out of places where they gather. That’s number one. Number two, you need to stop having your citizens finance these radical Islamists. You know that is going on. Hamas, Hezbollah, Al Qaeda, ISIS. People in the Middle East financing that. And we know what countries these people come from. And number three, and I was surprised and elated that he said this, he says, listen, at the end of the day this is a religious and political ideology that’s being fought inside the religion of Islam. He said we in the United States cannot undermine that ideology. Only you can do that. Only you can offer an alternative to these young people who are attracted to this radicalization because they want to live a life of purpose and meaning. You have to do that. But we will stand behind you. And when force is necessary to be used and we will help you with that if you need that kind of help. I think that kind of encouragement from the president made a historic statement about his commitment to the Middle East in terms of stability and security. 

And then as a case comes to Iran, within 30 days in office the Iranians fire a ballistic missile. Trump doesn’t say, well, you shouldn’t have done that and let’s have our foreign secretaries get together. He began to confront them immediately and sanctions them and calls them out not just for the ballistic missile testing, which is in violation of UN resolutions, he calls them out for the thing that has troubled us the most since 1980 and that is their regional strategic objectives to dominate and control the entire region. And he says those ambitions we are going to confront you. And that is something the previous administration was never willing to do. They put on the table initially that issue of strategic domination using proxies and fighters to control the region. Iranians say we won’t come to the table if that’s on—we’re only going to talk about nuclear weapons. And of course our guys said, okay, and went to the table without it. That is the central issue. All right? So here’s what I—this is what I know. What I don’t know is I don’t know where the administration is on the nuclear deal. There’s been pressure on them certainly during the campaign to walk away from it. But I do know this, they recognize, because we’ve had discussions that they’re in a deal with others and you can’t just act unilaterally. You’re in there with other countries. You can act unilaterally, but what do you actually accomplish by acting unilaterally other than you feel good about it? You want to impose some behavior change. So they recognize that. They have another option that they could still bring it to the Senate and try to get the treaty ratified. The Senate as it’s composed right now would reject it. So that’s another option. So I don’t think they have determined what they’re going to do about the nuclear deal other than let it continue, hold Iran’s feet to the fire. I do know as a strategy they wanted to deter Iran and they want to confront them and they want to change their behavior, similar to what they intend to do with Russia and with North Korea and China. And all of those require intensive, integrated, comprehensive strategies to do that. But what I don’t know is what we’ve discussed here already, is if they would make a strategic move to undermine the regime to the point that it would be overthrown. I don’t know if that is a strategy or not. And they’re five months, six months in to an administration. So they’re formulating strategies dealing with all of these complicated issues that I tried to give you the context of which we’re trying to deal with Iran, and I’ll just end on that. Thank you.

 

Ambassador Robert Joseph, United States Special Envoy for Nuclear Nonproliferation and the Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security until 2007 addressing the panel on “Policy review on Iran” in Paris on June 30, 2017, moderated by Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield, distinguished fellow and Chairman Emeritus at the Stimson Center, former Assistant Secretary of State for Military Affairs.

 

His remarks follow:

 What I’d like to do is drill a little bit deeper and look at the Iran issue more broadly from a counterproliferation or nonproliferation perspective. Because despite the hype both here in Europe and in the United States that’s been given to the JCPOA, the nuclear agreement, Iran continues to pursue nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles. The ballistic missiles are very obvious, they’re in the open or at least many of the programs are in the open, whereas the nuclear capacity I think is a bit more opaque but nevertheless still there. Because we shouldn’t kid ourselves, I think it was Olli Hienonen who was an IAEA inspector said that if Iran doesn’t have a covert nuclear program today it will be the first time in 30 years that it hasn’t had one. And we know, I think, from the revelations that were made available in Washington over the course of the last three weeks by the resistance, by NCRI, that both the missile and the nuclear programs continue unabated. But let me start with my conclusion or my bottom line. And that is that it’s essential to put the Iran proliferation challenge or threat in a broader context, in the context of the regime. Because it’s really only that way that we will find a path forward for dealing with the regime. And when I say dealing with the regime in an effective way it really means finding a best path to an end of the regime, because it’s only when the regime ends that we will have been able to stop the ballistic missile and the nuclear programs.

 Iran today continues very aggressively to pursue both ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons. Although the latter is now cloaked in this nuclear deal that lavishly rewards the regime for pretending that it’s not pursuing nuclear weapons. Even I think the defenders of the JCPOA would have to agree that Iran retains the capability of sneaking out or breaking out of the agreement, and that at best this agreement represents only a pause.

 I’ve got a piece coming out in The National Review in the next couple days, and it’s focused on North Korea and North Korea’s proliferation programs. And while the mullahs in Tehran and the Kim dynasty are different, I think it can be useful to draw some parallels. For the past 25 years in both cases the United States under both Democratic and Republican administrations have based policy on myths. And also in addition to the myths it’s this unfounded hope, unfounded hope that we see sneaking into our policy year after year, even with each successive failure that’s made apparent by either a missile test or a nuclear test. And when those failures appear we simply double down with the same old policy based on myth, based on misplaced hope. It’s as once Samuel Johnson wrote about second marriages, it’s the triumph of hope over experience. And it happens time and time and time again. And again while Iran pretends that it is agreeing and abiding by the nuclear deal, and we pretend that we believe them, their ICBM program continues apace. And remember there’s only one reason for an ICBM program and that is to put a nuclear weapon on the tip of it. With North Korea the fundamental myth was that the regime would go away in ten years. I heard this in 1994, I heard it in 2007, I heard it throughout the years of the Obama administration. The problem is the ten years, well it’s always ten years. And the regime doesn’t go away. Throughout the years though in North Korea we’ve shifted our policy from pursuing negotiations to sanctions to pressuring China, all designed to get North Korea back to the negotiating table.

 In fact, and this is what I argue in this piece to be published, focusing on negotiations has diluted our efforts to undermine a regime that is truly illegitimate and truly internally vulnerable. Regime change from within, and I always underline from within, is the key. And I would argue that it’s the prerequisite to ending the nuclear and the missile programs. And our concessions in and outside of negotiations with North Korea have only strengthened the regime and have had this perverted effect of perpetuating the very threats that we seek to end through the negotiations. So the parallels to Iran, and I’ll be very brief, are striking. Iran is much different than North Korea. Iran is a real country. Iran has 3,000 years of history and a rich culture. But our policy has still been based not on sound thinking, not on experience, but on misplaced hope. And the misplaced hope in this case is not that Iran is going to go away, but that we will be able to find moderates within the government that will lead the government to a new and better place. And this is the myth that has been perpetuated for years and years. Again, the myth triumphing over reality.

I think what we need to realize is that the regime itself is at the heart of the threat. The regime is the source of the nuclear and missile programs. The regime is the source of Iran’s expansionist policies in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and elsewhere. And it is the source very clearly of the brutal internal domestic repression. This is a regime that will not change. It’s a regime that cannot change because if it begins to change it will fall. Until the mullahs’ regime is brought down we will not succeed in our efforts to end the proliferation challenge or to acquire more stability in the region. And here again, as in North Korea, the irony is that our misguided policies have only strengthened the regime in Tehran, providing it with the means to advance its proliferation programs, to intervene and foment disorder in neighboring countries, and to brutalize its own people who are the first and foremost victims of the regime. The key in Iran, like in North Korea, is regime change from within, something that the Obama administration explicitly ruled out. How the Trump administration will deal with Iran is still an open question. I’m optimistic that this administration will continue to see Iran as a threat both from a proliferation perspective as well as from a regional instability perspective, and will continue its efforts to build support within the region and to take firm action. But their test or at least one test will be whether or not the administration is willing to list the IRGC as a terrorist organization and to sanction that organization and its supporters. Remember what my boss once said about Iran, that it is the central banker of international terrorism. Well, the IRGC is certainly the chief teller of that banking system. So today we have press reports that say that the usual sort of alignments are taking place in the policy review. There are some that support regime change. There are some that support continuing the current policy even though the latter is usually dressed up in much more harsh rhetoric, but it’s basically the same. Who will win out? I really don’t know. I do know that even if those who advocate regime change went out, it doesn’t mean that that policy will be implemented, going back to North Korea again. We did have the principals agree and the president agree on a firm policy of containment and regime change, but that wasn’t implemented. It simply wasn’t implemented and we fell back on negotiations and serial concessions to ensure that the negotiations didn’t fail, or at least would continue. So where we go from here, I think it’s essential that if we’re going to resolve the proliferation issue and the other challenges and threats that we have from Iran, we do need to support internal change. Again, regime change from within. We can’t do this from without but certainly we can support the opposition in Iran and those that support the opposition. We need to provide the opposition with hope and with sustenance in their long fight against this brutal regime. We need to support those opposition elements that favor, that advocate a non-nuclear secular government, and we need to ensure that those who support more missiles, more instability, and more of a brutal crackdown on the Iranian people are isolated and ultimately removed. And I think this is the vision and this is the mandate of Madam Rajavi. Thank you.