The situation continues to develop in the Middle East after the U.S. killing of a top Iranian military general.
Retired U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Kim Field is now the executive director of the Albritton Center for Grand Strategy at the Texas A&M Bush School of Government and Public Service. She joined First News at Four to discuss her views on what she calls an “opportunity.”
“In every crisis—and this is a bit of a crisis—we have an opportunity,” said Field. “Perhaps our opportunity here is to reexamine U.S. interests [in the Middle East].”
Field says, briefly, that the interests come down to fighting ISIL, the terrorist organization; energy interests ever since the Carter Doctrine; nuclear non-proliferation; and Israel.
“Those four interests are why we are there and why we care,” Field said. “How much we should care—and how much we should expend in money and lives—is worth a debate.”
Field says she is hopeful that the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran is not dead just yet, though the nation has threatened to back out of it.
“It is in no one’s interests for this to die,” Field said, “and I think President Trump has made it clear that he’s willing to renegotiate this agreement on terms that our Congress would feel are more acceptable.”
As for the movement of more U.S. troops to the area, Field calls the move “prudent.”
“No one can predict, we can only speculate [what will happen], and there's a risk of miscalculation of inadvertent escalation,” said Field. “I think this move is really a prudent one to ensure that we provide some protection for our bases, our service members, and our assets in the region. It doesn't necessarily indicate a movement toward war, or full-scale war.”
“No one wants that,” Field said.
Overwhelming, Field's message is clear: it is time to reconsider U.S. interests in Iran and the Middle East.
"[We need] to be very specific and clear with the American people on why we are in Iraq," Field said. "We do not have an existential threat or really existential interests in Iraq, but certainly to the Iraqi people and the Iranian people, this kind of a crisis and a mess is actually existential. I think that it's time for us to reconsider our interests in pretty clear terms."
For the full conversation with Field from First News at Four, see the video player above.