Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
As we -- -- earlier their mixed messages out of the Middle East concerning the release of two Americans held in Iran.
-- refers avoided earlier Iran's court system apparently contradicted the Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad -- when it denied that it will soon release that there.
Of course -- -- -- to judge yesterday told NBC news that the -- that Iran would release the Americans within days.
So what's it like inside that Iran -- president -- with us now -- the Washington bureau chief for the Wall Street -- Gerald side.
Journal of course it's owned by the parent company of this network and back in 1987.
Iran held Gerald as a spy for four days in the same prison where the hikers -- -- -- -- -- -- Jerry.
Thanks thanks -- what was it like there.
Well as the fun as you'd expect them it is not a horrible conditions but look here in prison and a prison as a prison Mike four days it can as is nothing compared to the point of time these two young men have spent their -- I would want to compare the two experiences entirely.
But you know it's a difficult situation and I will say in my case I'm sure in in this case as well.
Hard to be there even harder for the families back home they're the people who really don't deserve to go through the back and forth we've seen in the last 24 hours.
He's he's do you have a sense for what this is really all about of these guys just shoots in -- game here.
Well look I think they probably got caught in a verbal Tug of war between the president and the judiciary and this is not unusual in my particular case.
I was invited in to report on -- Iran Iraq War.
And I got caught in a -- -- in a struggle a Tug of war between the Foreign Ministry in a press services which invited -- And the security services which within a few days -- -- me put -- in -- -- said that I was I was a spy for Israel.
So clearly the government is in Iran can speak with multiple voices that seems to be the case here.
But -- also have to say though that that overall this is a good news scenario because what's happened in the last several.
Cases in which people have been arrested in Iran put in prison and accused of being a spy which is what happened here.
The release process the release scenario tends to work the way it is working here they get put on trial they get convicted of something they serve for awhile.
And then the Iranian government says okay will let you go now that we've we've dispense justice.
And you know as you indicated earlier the -- Foreign Ministry apparently has said it sent a plane to pick them up so somebody somewhere thinks.
A release is coming soon if not immediately the -- the mall is really run the country at -- how how does that factor into things.
-- it's a big factor because what you seen in in in recent times in the last few months certainly over the last year in Iran is a lot of struggles between president Ahmadinejad.
Who nobody here thinks of as a moderate.
But between -- is between him and more conservative elements of the -- -- government there have been disputes about.
Staffing the intelligence services -- have been disputes about the economy there's been as you know struggles over the -- -- of the nuclear program US officials.
They -- differences between the more conservative clerical establishment.
And the president over strategy in negotiations.
Over the Iranian nuclear program so the idea that there's tensions there.
And particularly some tensions between the president and the conservative clerical establishment which is closely identified with the judiciary.
That's not new -- particularly surprising but I think that's what we're seeing come to the surface right now.
Is there a way to know through experience viewers and those of others have spent more time there what sort of treatment these men might have received that we learned anything from.
From from the fiance who's already that'll release -- short.
Yeah I I think probably so and I I I think about Rex -- a very who is a journalist held.
Earlier in Iran -- you know as I was.
The treatment tends to be did not bad I mean I was not abused in anyway.
I was fed well I was house well I wouldn't say it was a hotel like atmosphere which is said the president has described it.
But they tended to treat prisoners in the situation reasonably well.
The reality is that there's a set at the outset it's still a prison but I don't think they're -- they're likely to be abused in anyway be -- snow.
That that's not a good public relations ploy.
And I suspect they'll come out and say that wild that it was it was an unpleasant experience I doubt that it was horrible and in that particular way.
But I I think -- public relations part of this is important to the Iranians and that.
Is true here because it's clear that one of the reasons the president wanted to get this done as he's coming to New York -- a week -- so to go to the United Nations Jerrold side from the Wall Street Journal -- always good to see you thank you.
-- -- again the journal owned by the parent company of this network well.
Filter by section