Scott Horton Interviews Flynt Leverett

Scott Horton, October 15, 2011

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Flynt Leverett, former Senior Director for Middle East Affairs at the National Security Council, discusses his article “Iranian ‘plots’ and American hubris;” why the strange assassination plot is at cross-purposes with Iran’s policy objectives (but syncs perfectly with Israel’s); Iran’s reliance on foreign proxy groups and asymmetric warfare for national defense, in lieu of a powerful conventional military; US policy towards Iran that says, in essence, a meaningful defensive deterrence is really a provocative threat; how Obama’s bad-faith negotiations killed a viable uranium swap deal with Iran, Brazil and Turkey; blaming Iran for attacks on US troops in Iraq; and how the US starts wars by practicing false diplomacy, rebuffing peaceful resolutions then sending in the military while claiming the other side was intransigent.

MP3 here. (27:52)

Flynt Leverett runs The Race For Iran blog and teaches at Pennsylvania State University’s School of International Affairs. Additionally, he directs the Iran Project at the New America Foundation, where he is a Senior Research Fellow.

Dr. Leverett is a leading authority on the Middle East and Persian Gulf, U.S. foreign policy, and global energy affairs. From 1992 to 2003, he had a distinguished career in the U.S. government, serving as Senior Director for Middle East Affairs at the National Security Council, on the Secretary of State’s Policy Planning Staff, and as a CIA Senior Analyst. He left the George W. Bush Administration and government service in 2003 because of disagreements about Middle East policy and the conduct of the war on terror.

Dr. Leverett’s 2006 monograph, Dealing With Tehran: Assessing U.S. Diplomatic Options Toward Iran, presented the seminal argument for a U.S.-Iranian “grand bargain”, an idea that he has developed in multiple articles and Op Eds in The New York Times, The National Interest, POLITICO, Salon, Washington Monthly, and the New America Foundation’s “Big Ideas for a New America” series.

14 Responses to “Flynt Leverett”

  1. No one comes even close to american military might how american diplomacy isn't as dominant as the military is. I do believe that many problems in the middle east could be solved by a strong democracy rather than just wars and that america could become the world's mediator instead of the world's policeman.

  2. "… Obama lied to Lulu (Turkey) and Erdogan (Brazil). Turkey..An utterly cynical and dishonest diplomatly ploy. " says Flynt Leverett, Iran expert.
    Anyone who looks, let alone studies Obama knows he lies with abandoned immunity on foreign policy. Time to get rid of him, sure the Republicans will be bad. Watch an instant and temporary antiwar left materialize until another democrat gets elected.

  3. I agree with everthing said by studying from Antiwar and many other places and I'm only 15 minutes in.America don't care about friends unless it could help them and listen to everything they say.I don't understand why Israel has so much control over America.AIPAC should not be able the buy the American government.Americas actions are because of greed Lybia was a lie they never cared about civilian deaths just 1 to add to the hundreds of lies and fauls propoganda.The world is seeing through America now.Hopfully soon things chang like if Ron Paul was elected he could not be bought and paid for and head America in the right direction.Its bull how we have to worrie about WW3 all the time because of America and Israel.It would be great to have a American government that follows the constitution and Geniva laws.An attack on Iran or Pakistan could easly turn into a nucular WW3.

  4. Always good to see the Leveretts on the show. Please have them on more often!

  5. Second that.

  6. WAR: a frame of mind where people feel they deserve more, which springs from the illusion that we deserve to live

    For if we deserve to live, then surely we deserve the wealth needed to eat and enjoy life. Then for an absolute, we deserve to “Be All We Can Be,” to earn all we can earn, take all we can take, own all we can own and to be a dictator over all who are on land that we own.

    HAPPINESS: a frame of mind where war is impossible, for it springs from the reality that this day of life is more then anyone deserves

    For if we deserve nothing, then everything we own belongs to those who have less then us. Then most guilty do we feel if ever we miss an opportunity to give all we can give

    For what a man feels he deserves, this is his highest priority in life, his high watermark to achieve, and it controls every aspect of his mind, character and personality.

  7. [...] Not buying the Iran-plot: thoughts on the Saudi ambassador plot and Iran national security strategy from Leverett (who has a [...]

  8. A one man dictatorship ruled by a moral man, or Empire USA ruled by the 51% highest achievers namely the 51% most aggressive and wealthy — now which would you prefer?

  9. We don’t normally call paid actors liars, for they are only putting on a performance and doing what their paid to do. Bill Cosby entertains our nation of fiction lovers on TV, Obama entertains them in the White House and it all depends on who hired the actor and what their intent may be.

  10. If Ron Paul would campaign to raise the minimum age to $20 an hour I would vote for him. For forced charity robs from the rich, starvation wages robs from the poor and to eliminate just one of these the two greatest evils — surely this would start a civil war.

  11. with the up coming nuke war we all die,yes we get wasted so you nuke em guys who think you will live a nuke will be going to your town all because you people love war and hate so the rest of us have to die because you are so brain less,you know who you are,the government knows,I think of peace,schools,jobs,food on the table not guns,our childrens future not nuke em,if we nuke they nuke us to so think before you post,peace and hope Ron Paul gets voted in so we can have a future for our children

  12. ron paul will never be elelcted because england and not israle will not want it.
    america exists to serve england -this face is lsot on americans but not the english pirate nation.

  13. now how come about that every President who wanted to take stand indendent of Britain in America on Domestic or Foreign has eithr been made impotent or killed(Abraham Lincoln, Kennedy,Robert Kennedy)To understand that one has to remember British propaganda machinary(all sorts of media,BBB.,Papars, govt,etc) and britihs agents in America.Britain has always acted like a heyena(or dog) who let two or Three Lions(OF Europe like France, GermansSpanishItalians-all aristrocatic races campared to pirate turned shopkeepers of England)fight amongst and then the kill(loot) would be enjoyed by the heyana. When Nepolean the great defeated the Bitish ,the later agreed to relinquish their deceitfull presence everywhere.But they never have any intention of honouring their pact anyway.They therefore bid for the time to laet some great power get involved against France.

  14. all roads lead to israel

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