Steven Simon is the executive director of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS-US) and the corresponding director of IISS-Middle East.
He has served as a member of the White House's national security staff and is an expert on US foreign policy and security in the Middle East and North Africa.
Simon discusses the resurgence of al-Qaeda, the quashing of the Muslim Brotherhood, and whether this will lead to radicalisation.
"My view of the Arab Spring was that it was in a perverse sense God’s gift to al-Qaeda. Because it created exactly the sorts of circumstances, the sorts of conditions, in which al-Qaeda thrives. And those arose, those conditions arose in North Africa really concomitant with the Arab Spring revolutions, and they were hastened. They were really accelerated by the invasion of Libya, by the overthrowing of the [Muammar] Gaddafi regime in Libya, which created a fabulous space for al-Qaeda types to establish themselves."
|Empire can be seen from the last Sunday of every month at 2000GMT, and is re-aired during the following week at these times GMT: Monday: 1200GMT; Tuesday: 0100GMT; Wednesday: 0600GMT.
Click here for more Empire.
Source: Al Jazeera