Charlie Rose from CBS 60 Minutes had the opportunity to interview the embattled Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad and to talk specifically about the problems that are exploding all over the Middle East. Assad pointed at the one major issue connecting all of the Middle East’s current problems… Sunni Wahhabism.
Assad believes that ISIS, Al Qaeda, Turkey and Saudi Arabia are all actually cut from the same cloth and their philosophies are the root cause of all the problems currently facing the Middle East.
Starting at about 5:30 in the video:
Charlie Rose: You have often spoken about the danger of a wider war in the Middle East. Can you talk about the parties involved? And characterize how you see them. Let me begin with Saudi Arabia.
Bashar Al-Assad: Saudi Arabia is an anarchic autocracy. A medieval system that’s based on the Wahhabi dark ideology. Actually, say it’s a marriage between the Wahhabi and the political system for 200 years now. That’s how we look at it.
Bashar Al-Assad: The same ideology. The same background.
Charlie Rose: So ISIS and Saudi Arabia are one and the same?
Bashar Al-Assad: The same ideology. Yes… It’s Wahhabi ideology. They base their ideology is based on the books of the Wahhabi from Saudi Arabia.
Charlie Rose: So you believe that all Wahhabis have the same ideology as ISIS–
Bashar Al-Assad: Exactly. Definitely. And that’s by ISIS, by al Qaeda, by al Nusra. It’s not something we discovered or something we try to promote. It’s very I mean their books– they use the same books to indoctrinate the people. The Wahhabi books.
Charlie Rose: What about Turkey?
Bashar Al-Assad: Turkey — let’s say it’s about Erdogan. His Muslim Brotherhood fanatics… It doesn’t mean that he is a member. But he’s a fanatic.
Charlie Rose: President Erdogan is–
Bashar Al-Assad: Is a Muslim Brotherhood fanatic. And he’s somebody who’s suffering from political megalomania. And that he thinks that he is becoming the sultan of the new era of the 21st century.
On Fox News retired General Jack Keane acknowledged that Assad wasn’t necessarily wrong about the things that he was saying during his 60 Minutes interview.
Assad is a thug and a butcher and I hold him in total contempt, but he’s right on a couple of these points…
Our relationship with every major Sunni ally that we have in the region is at the worst it has ever been, and it is all over Iran. Just look at what has taken place — not rhetoric, action. And all the actions we are taking… driven by the fact that negotiations with Iran come first. And they believe we are rushing head long into a deal which is not going to serve their interest of the region’s interest… it is a very undesirable situation.