The third episode of Cross-border Talks offers a look to the Great Middle East after the ongoing US/NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan.
In the first segment we speak to Bartosz Rydlinksi who has been affiliated with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and is knowledgeable on international relations between “West” and “East”. We study what is the American rationale behind the pullout, is the EU going to pay once again the price for Western beligerence (apart from the people of the Middle East), what role might neighbouring countries such as Iran play in Afghanistan and other issues.
In the second segment the issue of Iran’s position and role in Afghanistan is further studied through Malgorzata Kulbaczewska-Figat’s interview with Vladimir Mitev. He observes that the Iranian state and society are complex and see many issues in contradictory senses. The Revoutionary Guards has been engaging the Taliban for years, but another part of Iranians fear that a trap is set up for them to the east, that they might get involved in a civil war that will drain further their resources. The interview also deals with the new cabinet of Ebrahim Raisi, its foreign policy preferences and the recent protests in Iran.
The foreign policy ambiguity in Iran is mixed with an large diversity of internal crises
The Cross-border Talks
The second segment of the third episode of Cross-border Talks deals with the Iranian attitude towards the takeover of power in Afghanistan by the Taliban, which happened in August 2021. It also studies the recalibration of the Iranian foreign policy following the start of the presidency of Ebrahim Raisi and its relative orientation towards what Iran considers “The East” and the region. Also, the issue of the negotiations in Vienna over the renewal of the nuclear deal between Iran and the international community is reviewed. Finally, the discussions deal with the various crises in the country: the economic, social, medical, corona crisis and water shortages. In an international system focused on power relations, the Iranian people are paying the price on one hand for Iran’s tendency for strict control over domestic affairs and being part of “the axis of resistance”, and also for the economic warfare against the country coming from leading countries in the West.
This video was released on 24 August 2021. Subscribe to the YouTube channel of the Cross-border Talks podcast here.