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Foreign Policy Analysis
What Will Be in the Foreign Policy In-Box of the Next President? | Conversations in the Digital Age

What Will Be in the Foreign Policy In-Box of the Next President? | Conversations in the Digital Age


♪ [THEME MUSIC] ♪>>HI THERE. I’M JIM ZIRIN. WELCOME BACK TO MORE
CONVERSATIONS IN THE DIGITAL AGE. EACH YEAR IN OUR SHOW,
RICHARD HAAS FOR THE PAST THIRTEEN YEARS, PRESIDENT FOR
THE COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS, HAS TAKEN US ON A
TOUR OF THE WORLDS TROUBLE SPOTS AND INDICATED HIS VIEW OF
THE POLICIES THAT WILL BEST ASSURE THE NATIONAL SECURITY OF
THE UNITED STATES. 2016 IS OF COURSE THE YEAR OF THE
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION AND RICHARD HAS RECENTLY WRITTEN AN
INSIGHTFUL PIECE FOR TIME ENTITLED THE IN-BOX OF THE NEXT
COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF, IN WHICH HE SEES A WORLD IN DISARAY AND
DISCUSSES SOME OF THE HARSH GLOBAL REALITIES FACING THE 45TH
PRESEIDENT TO BE ELECTED IN NOVEMBER. RICHARD HAAS IS WITH
US AGAIN TO ELABORATE ON THIS IN-BOX AND WHY WITH THE MID-EAST
UNRAVELING WITH THE POSSIBILITIES OF A NUCULEAR ARMS
RACE, CONTINUING TERRORIST THREATS FROM AL-QAEDA AND ISIS,
THE POTENTIAL OF A NEW COLD WAR WITH RUSSIA, OR POSSIBLY CHINA,
ASIA’S ECONOMIC SLOW-DOWN COUPLED WITH INCREASINGLY
ASSERTIVE CHINA, NORTH KOREA THREATENING TO LAUNCH A HYDROGEN
BOMB THAT WOULD DESTROY MANHATTAN ISLAND AND UNRESOLVED
ISSUES OF FREE TRADE AND PROTECTIONISM TO NAME BUT A FEW,
THE OUTCOME OF THIS YEARS PRESIDENTIAL RACE COULD PROVE TO
BE ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT IN AMERICAN HISTORY. RICHARD WE’RE
DELIGHTED TO HAVE YOU WITH US.>>YOU HEAR THAT LIST YOU WONDER
WHY ANYONE WANTS THE JOB.>>DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL
INTELLIGENCE JIM CLAPPER JUST TOLD CONGRESS THAT NORTH KOREA
WAS OUR GREATEST THREAT TO NATIONAL SECURITY. DO YOU AGREE
WITH THAT?>>WELL IT’S QUITE POSSIBLE THAT
SOMETIME DURING THE NEXT PRESIDENCY, CERTAIN IF THE NEXT
PRESIDENT IS A TWO TERM PRESIDENT, WE WILL GET UP ONE
DAY AND UNLESS SOMETHING INTERVENES NORTH KOREA WILL HAVE
THE ABILITY TO TAKE NUCLEAR WEAPONS, MAKE THEM SMALL, TO PUT
THEM ON MISSLES, THAT CAN REACH PARTS IF NOT ALL OF THE
COUNTRY. AND THE NEXT PRESIDENT WILL THEN HAVE TO DECIDE IF THIS
IS SOMETHING WE’RE PREPARED TO TOLERATE. ARE WE PREPARED TO
LIVE IF YOU WILL WITH A BALANCE OF TERROR WITH ONE OF THE MOST
DANGEROUS LEADERS AND REGIMES IN THE WORLD. IF NOT, WE MAY
HAVE TO THINK ABOUT HOW WE AVOID REACHING THAT POINT OR WHAT WE
WOULD DO IF WE WERE TO REACH THAT POINT BUT THAT’S CERTAINLY
ON ANYBODY’S SHORT LIST OF THE NATIONAL SECURITY CHALLENGES
FACING US, AGAIN NOT REGIONALLY BUT GLOBALLY.>>WHAT DO YOU THINK OUR
OPTIONS ARE WITH NORTH KOREA? WHAT CAN WE DO?>>ONE OPTION GOES THROUGH
BEIJING. THE CHINESE, EVEN THOUGH THEY SAY THEY DON’T HAVE
MUCH LEVERAGE DO. MOST OF NORTH KOREA’S TRADE TRANSITS MAIN LAND
CHINA. WOULD THEY BE PREPARED UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES TO
PUT MUCH MORE PRESSURE ON NORTH KOREA, EVEN RISK BRINGING DOWN
THE REGIME? AND THE QUESTION IS COULD WE GIVE THEM CERTAIN
UNDERSTANDINGS ABOUT THE TRANSITION AND WHAT WOULD COME
OUT OF THE TRANSITION IN TERMS OF A UNIFIED KOREA THAT THEY
MIGHT SEE THAT AS LESS BAD THEN THE STATUS QUO OR WHAT MIGHT
LEAD TO A WAR. IF THAT DOESN’T WORK WE MAY HAVE TO THINK ABOUT
UNDER WHAT CIRCUMSTANCES WE WOULD USE FORCE. THE ALTERNATIVE
TO USING MILITARY FORCE THAT PRESSURES NORTH KOREA IS TO
ENTER INTO A SITUATION OF MISSILE DEFENCE AND SO FORTH AND
THAT JUST MAKES ME UNEASY GIVEN THE NATURE OF THIS REGIME. ONE
THING I WOULD SAY JIM IS I HAVE ZERO CONFIDENCE THAT SOME
COMBINATION OF SANCATIONS AND NEGOTIATIONS ARE GOING TO
RESOLVE THIS FORCE. WE’VE LOOKED TO THAT FOR DECADES AND ALL I
KNOW IS THAT DURING THAT TIME, NORTH KOREA IS STILL THERE, THE
REGIME IS STILL THERE, AND THEIR NUCLEAR PROGRAM HAS GROWN
DRAMATICALLY. THEY’VE USED THESE TALKS AS A COVER FOR ADVANCING
THE NUCLEAR PROGRAM SO I THINK WE SHOULDN’T KID OUTSELVES THAT
THIS MOST RECENT UN RESOLUTION OR ANY UN RESOLUTION IS GOING TO
DO THE TRICK HERE.>>SO ANY DISCUSSION OF NORTH
KOREA LEADS YOU TO CHINA. WHAT IS OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH
CHINA NOW? IT SEEMS IT’S BECOME MORE DIFFICULT. YOU JUST
RETURNED FROM ASIA.>>IT’S COMPLICATED. IT’S GOT
VARIOUS DIMENSIONS TO IT. IT’S NOT EASY TO PIGEON HOLE, IT’S
NOT PURELY ADVERSARIAL, IT’S NOT PURELY COOPERATIVE, IT’S GOT
ELEMENTS OF BOTH AND THAT’S PART OF THE CHALLENGE. IN SOME WAYS
IT’S LESS DIFFICULT TO DEAL WITH A COUNTRY THAT’S ONE
DIMENSIONAL FOE THEN YOU KNOW HOW TO DEAL WITH IT. YOU HAVE A
COOK BOOK. BUT A COUNTRY LIKE CHINA, WE’VE GOT AREAS THAT
COOPERATE ON POTENTIALLY PROLIFERATION QUESTIONS,
POTENTIALLY ON CLIMATE. WE HAVE A LARGE INTER-DEPENDENT ECONOMIC
RELATIONSHIP BUT THEN WE DISAGREE IN AREAS. WE HAVE REAL
HEARTBURN WITH WHAT THE CHINESE ARE DOING IN THE SOUTH CHINA
SEA.>>ARE WE HEADED FOR A SHOWDOWN
THERE?>>NOT NECESSARILY. I WOULD
THINK ONE OF THE GOALS OF AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY OUGHT TO
BE THAT WE DON’T HAVE A SHOWDOWN WITH CHINA. THIS CENTURY IS
GOING TO BE PLENTY TOUGH WITHOUT HAVING THE
STRUCTURE OF A COLD WAR BETWEEN
THE TWO MOST POWERFUL
COUNTRIES. IF WE CAN AVOID IT, IT’S IN OUR
INTEREST TO MAINTAIN THE KIND
OF RELATIONSHIP WE’VE HAD THE
CHINA WHICH AT LEAST IS OPEN TO
THE REALITY OF SELECTIVE AREAS OF
COOPERATION.>>BUT THE
SITUATION IS SOMEWHAT MUDDLED
THERE, ISN’T IT, BECAUSE THEIR
ECONOMY IS IN DECLINE. THE WHOLE ASIAN
ECONOMY IS IN DECLINE WORLD WIDE
ECONOMY IS IN DECLINE.>>AS CHINA FACES
INCREASED ECONOMIC PROBLEMS, THE
ECONOMY SLOWS. THERE MIGHT BE
THOSE IN BEIJING WHO ARE LOOKING
FOR A MORE ASSERTIVE FOREIGN CAMPAIGN TO
COMPENSATE FOR THE LEGITIMACY. WE’VE GOT
TO MAKE
IT CLEAR THERE’S A PLACE FOR CHINA IN
THE WORLD THAT IS FULLY CONSISTENT
WITH LEGITIMATE AND REASONABLE
CHINESE AMBITION. I THINK WE’VE GOT
TO BE PREPARED NOT JUST FOR A CHINA
THAT’S SLOWING DOWN ECONOMICALLY,
BUT ALSO FOR A CHINA THAT’S CRACKING DOWN
AT HOME POLITICALLY. WE’RE BEGINNING TO
SEE SIGNS OF THAT. AGAIN, IT’S PROBABLY LINKED
TO THE ECONOMIC SLOW DOWN. THERE’S ZERO TOLERANCE
FOR SIGNIFICANT DISSENT. IN THE INBOX OF
THE NEW PRESIDENT IT WILL BE A
COMPLICATED SITUATION OF A
COUNTRY THAT’S SLOWING DOWN
ECONOMICALLY.>>WHEN THEIR
COUNTRY WAS RED HOT, THE CONCERN WAS THEY BECOME MORE
NATIONALISTIC AND ASSERTIVE.>>HE SAID ALL I
KNOW IS THAT WHEN WE BUILD, THEY
BUILD. AND WHEN WE DON’T
BUILD, THEY BUILD. WITH CHINA EITHER
WAY YOU’RE LIKELY TO SEE A MORE
NATIONALIST CHINA. WHAT WE NEED TO DO
IS PUSH BACK AND MAKE IT CLEAR THAT
WILL NOT BE A PATH TOWARD
SATISFACTION, THAT CHINA STILL VERY
MUCH HAS A PATH TOWARD A WONDERFUL
FUTURE AS LONG AS IT REACTS IN A WAY
THAT’S CONSISTENT WITH RESTRAINT AND
RULES.>>HOW ABOUT THE
TRANS PACIFIC TRADE PACT?>>I’M A FERVENT
SUPPORTER OF IT. STRATEGICALLY IT’S
ONE OF THE GLUES BETWEEN THE UNITED
STATES AND THEIR ALLIES BUT IT’S
ALSO INTERDEPENDENT. I’M A GREAT BELIEVER IN
TRADE. FOR WHOSE WHO ARE HURT THAT’S WHEN I GET
INTO THINGS LIKE WAGE INSURANCE OR
VARIOUS TYPES OF EDUCATION AND
RETRAINING. WE HAVE TO HAVE
ALL THAT TO MAKE SURE THOSE WHO ARE
AFFECTED HAVE A CHANCE. I’M WORRIED
THOUGH, THE PRESIDENTIAL
CANDIDATES ARE ALL AGAINST FREE
TRADE. THIS HAS BEEN AN
IMPORTANT SOURCE OF STRENGTH, I
BELIEVE, TO THE UNITED STATES OVER
THE DECADES. IT DID ENJOY
CONSIDERABLE BIPARTISAN SUPPORT
THAT SEEMS TO HAVE GONE BY THE
WAYSIDE. I’M WORRIED IF WE
DON’T GO AHEAD WITH THE TPP, IT
WILL REINFORCE DOUBTS THAT ARE
ALREADY OUT THERE IN THE WORLD ABOUT
AMERICAN RELIABILITY. THESE DOUBTS STEM
FROM WHAT PRESIDENT OBAMA SAID HE WOULD DO
AND DIDN’T DO IN SYRIA.>>THE RED LINE.>>YES. I BELIEVE
THE REPERCUSSIONS POTENTIALLY GO WAY
BEYOND THE PLUSES AND MINUSES OF THE
AGREEMENT ITSELF.>>THERE’S AN
DISTINCT BETWEEN TRADE AND TRADE
AGREEMENTS, WHICH MIGHT PROMOTE
JOBS.>>CERTAINLY. THE
MAIN ADVANTAGE OF THIS AGREEMENT OTHERS WOULD LOWER
TARIFFS TO US. ON BALANCE IT’S A
GOOD AGREEMENT. IN MANY CASES
TRADE IS GETTING A BAD RAP. YES, A LOT OF
AMERICANS LOST JOB, IN MOST CASES
NOT FROM TRADE AGREEMENTS. IN MANY CASES IT’S
SIMPLY FROM TECHNOLOGY. NOW YOU NEED FEWER
PEOPLE, IF ANY, TO DO WHAT A LOT OF
PEOPLE USED TO DO. THAT TO ME ARGUES
FOR TRAINING AND EDUCATION. SO THAT WORKERS
WHO HAD A JOB THAT WAS ELIMINATED,
THEN WE POSITION THEMSELVES TO GET
NEW AND BETTER JOBS.>>WE’RE ALREADY
COMMITTED TO TWO MAJOR TRADE AGREEMENTS ANYWAY,
THE NORTH AMERICAN FREE TRADE
AGREEMENT AND ALSO THE AGREEMENT WITH
SOUTH KOREA.>>WE’RE COMMITTED
TO ANY NUMBER. AND NAFTA WHICH IS
WILDLY CONTROVERSIAL,
IT’S CONTRIBUTED TO U.S., CANADIAN
AND MEXICAN ECONOMIC GROWTH. ONE OF THE REASONS
THERE IS NOT MORE IMMIGRATION FROM
MEXICO, IS THAT THIS HAS BEEN GOOD
FOR THE MEXICAN ECONOMY. IT’S CONTRIBUTED
TO THE ECONOMIC GROWTH RATE OF THE
MEXICAN ECONOMY. AND THAT HAS MEANT
THAT MORE MEXICAN YOUNG MEN HAVE
STAYED HOME. THAT’S SIMPLY A
REALITY. I’M NOT SAYING TRADE
AGREEMENTS ARE PERFECT. ON BALANCE I
BELIEVE TRADE AGREEMENTS HAVE
BEEN GOOD FOR THE UNITED STATES.>>IN 2010, OBAMA THROUGH
HIS THEN SECRETARY OF STATE CLINTON ANNOUNCED
A PIVOT TOWARD ASIA. YOU QUARRELED
TOWARD THAT TERM.>>A BASKETBALL
TERM.>>I’M NOT
QUARRELING WITH THE BASIC CONCEPT
THAT THE UNITED STATES HAS BEEN
FOR A DECADE AND A HALF NOW OVERLY INVOLVED IN
THE GREATER MIDDLE EAST, TO THE DEGREE OF WHAT I
WOULD CALL DISTORTION. I DO BELIEVE IN
THE IDEA OF REBALANCING BUT
DOING SLIGHTLY LESS IN THE
GREATER MIDDLE EAST AND SLIGHTLY
MORE OUT IN ASIA. I THINK THAT
STRATEGICALLY IT WAS THE BEST IDEA
OF THE OBAMA FOREIGN POLICY. MY QUIBBLE WITH IT IS NOT THE
CONCEPT BUT THE IMPLEMENTATION. I THINK IT’S VERY
MUCH IN OUR INTEREST.>>YOU WROTE IN THE
TIME PIECE THAT THE MIDDLE EAST IS UNRAVELING.
HOW IS IT UNRAVELING? AND WHAT’S THE WAY
FORWARD?>>WELL, HOW ISN’T
IT UNRAVELING? ORDER IN THE
MIDDLE EAST, WHETHER YOU WANT
TO CALL IT THE POST WORLD WAR I
ORDER, YOU HAVE A FAILED STATE IN
SYRIA, LIBYA. YOU’VE GOT
SOMETHING LIKE A FAILED STATE IN
IRAQ AND YEMEN. YOU OVER GOT
IRAN’S NUCLEAR PROGRAM WHICH WAS
CAPPED BUT NOT ELIMINATED BY THE
AGREEMENT. TURKEY IS
SUFFERING ALL SORTS OF DOMESTIC
CHALLENGES. YOU’VE GOT THE
KURDS IN SYRIA AND IN IRAQ THINKING
ABOUT A STATE OF THEIR OWN. I THINK YOU’VE GOT
MAJOR DOMESTIC CHALLENGES
VIS-A-VIS ORDER IN EGYPT, POTENTIALLY
FUTURE CHALLENGES IN SAUDI ARABIA WHEN A
GROUP LIKE ISIS CHALLENGES IT. JORDAN IS DEALING
WITH THIS ENORMOUS BURDEN OF
REFUGEES. WE’VE GOT THE
UNRESOLVED PALESTINIAN QUESTION. I COULD GO ON AND
ON. I SEE — OUT OF
THE 30 YEARS WAR, THE POLITICAL AND
RELIGIOUS STRUGGLES WITHIN
AND ACROSS BOUNDARIES. I SEE NO REASON TO
BE OPTIMISTIC. I DON’T THINK IT’S
CLOSE TO BURNING OUT, WHETHER IT’S
SUNNI, SHIA. WHETHER IT’S
PERSIAN ARAB. I WORRY THAT
THERE’S ENOUGH FUEL FOR THIS TO
CONTINUE FOR YEARS TO COME OR EVEN
LONGER.>>YOU MENTIONED
IRAN. WAS THE IRAN DEAL A GOOD
DEAL FOR THE UNITED STATES?>>IT’S NOT THE
DEAL I WOULD HAVE NEGOTIATED. I THINK WE COULD
HAVE NEGOTIATED A BETTER DEAL. I BELIEVE WE
SHOULD HAVE INSISTED ON A MUCH
LONGER DEAL. THAT SAID, IT’S
THE ONLY DEAL WE HAVE. SO I WOULD THINK
RIGHT NOW –>>WHAT ABOUT
ALLOWING THEM MISSILES IN THE
NEAR TERM?>>AGAIN, LOTS OF
PROBLEMS WITH THE DEAL.>>THAT HAVE
ISRAEL WRITTEN ON THE NOSE.>>YOU’VE GOT
THEIR ABILITY TO START GETTING IN
THE ARMS MARKET AGAIN. THERE’S LOTS OF
ASPECTS OF THE DEAL THAT GIVE ME
MAJOR HEARTBURN. GOING FORWARD WE
NEED TO INSIST THAT IRAN
OBVIOUSLY COMPLY WITH THE DEAL. WE’VE GOT TO WORK
VERY HARD THAT ITS NEIGHBORS DON’T
INITIATE NUCLEAR PROGRAMS OF THEIR
OWN.>>A NUCLEAR ARMS
RACE IN THE MIDDLE EAST.>>JUST WHEN YOU THOUGHT THE
MIDDLE EAST COULDN’T GET WORSE, I COULD.>>THE MIDDLE EAST
HAS BEEN THOUGHT OF AS THE HEART
LAND OF TERRORISM. WE JUST SAW TODAY
ANOTHER INSTANCE OF IT WITH THE
HORRIFIC EVENT IN BRUSSELS FOLLOWING
SAN BERNARDINO AND PARIS. WHAT ARE OUR
OPTIONS THERE? HOW CAN WE PUT A
STOP TO THIS?>>THERE’S NO
SINGLE ANSWER OR SOLUTION. I THINK TERRORISM
IS NOW PART OF THE WOOD WORK, PART OF
THE NEW NORMAL OR ABNORMAL, IF YOU
WILL. IF YOU CAN’T PUT
THEM OUT OF BUSINESS, YOU CAN
AT LEAST PUT THEM ON THE DEFENSIVE. THERE ARE THINGS
WE HAVE GOT TO DO TO MAKE OUR
BORDERS MORE SECURE. YOU’VE GOT TO
THINK HARD ABOUT HOW YOU ASSIMILATE POPULATIONS. WHAT’S THE ROLE OF
LAW ENFORCEMENT IN HOMELAND SECURITY
AND INTELLIGENCE AGENCIES.>>THAT WAS THE
APPLE CASE.>>ABSOLUTELY. MIGHT BE DECIDED
ON SOMEBODY’S WORKBENCH. I THINK AGAIN
THERE’S NO SINGLE ANSWER TO THIS. I THINK WHEN THE
EUROPEANS PAY A PRICE IT’S A BAD
COMBINATION OF THEIR OPENNESS OF
THEIR BORDERS AND THE LACK OF
EFFECTIVE INTERNAL SECURITY AND THEN
YOU HAVE POPULATIONS THAT
HAVEN’T BEEN AFFECTIVELY
ASSIMILATED. ONE OF THE ADVANTAGES OF
THE UNITED STATES — WE’RE NOT PERFECT,
BUT I BELIEVE WE’RE BETTER IN THIS AREA — IS WE
HAVE DONE A GOOD JOB OF INTEGRATING
IMMIGRANT POPULATIONS. THESE COMMUNITIES IN SOME
CASES LOOK AFTER THEMSELVES.>>COULD IT BE A NATIONAL
SECURITY OBJECTIVE OF THE UNITED STATES’
STRATEGY TO DESTROY ISIS ONCE
AND FOR ALL?>>I’D LOVE TO
DESTROY ISIS AND GROUPS LIKE IT. IF IT’S NOT ISIS,
IT WILL BE AL QAEDA. THERE’S GOING TO
BE A DEGREE OF DISAFFECTED PEOPLE
OUT THERE WHO ARE GOING TO HAVE
EXTREME AGENDAS. TO ME A MORE
REALISTIC GOAL IS HOW DO WE MINIMIZE
IT AND HOW DO WE DEAL WITH IT. HOW DO WE MAKE
OURSELVES MORE RESILIENT. WHAT DO WE DO IN THE
NAME OF HOMELAND SECURITY. HOW DO WE
DISCOURAGE YOUNG MEN AND WOMEN FROM
BEING RECRUITS IN THE FIRST PLACE.>>LET’S TALK
ABOUT ANOTHER COUNTRY IN THE
MIDDLE EAST. SYRIA. PUTIN JUST A WEEK
AGO OR SO TOOK A PAGE FROM THAT OF
ANOTHER VERMONT SENATOR, GEORGE
ACHEN AND HE DECLARED VICTORY
AND STARTED TO GO HOME. DO YOU THINK SYRIA
WAS A SUCCESS FOR THE RUSSIANS?>>WHAT THE
RUSSIANS DID IS THEY INTERVENED
WITH CONSIDERABLE FORCE TO SHORE UP
THE REGIME. AND THEY
SUCCEEDED. THEY HAD FAIRLY
HEAVY MEANS AND FAIRLY LIMITED
GOALS. THEY AVOIDED
TRYING TO PACIFY THE ENTIRE
COUNTRY. THEY WEREN’T
TRYING TO MAKE ALL OF SYRIA
FUNCTIONAL OR VIABLE AGAIN AND
THEY WEREN’T TRYING TO
TRANSFORM IT. THERE MUST NOT BE
A PHRASE NOR NATION BUILDING IN
RUSSIA.>>THERE’S NO
PHRASE FOR REGIME CHANGE. THEY DON’T LIKE
THAT.>>WHAT YOU HAD
WAS REGIME SHORING UP AND I WOULD SAY
IT SUCCEEDED. I DON’T KNOW HOW
TO SAY THE POWELL DOCTRINE IN
RUSSIAN, BUT HOWEVER YOU SAY
IT — FAIRLY LIMITED MEANS FOR
FAIRLY UNLIMITED ENDS. THE RUSSIANS HAVE REDUCED
THEIR LEVEL OF INVOLVEMENT.>>PUTIN KEPT THE
COSTS OF IT DOWN IN TERMS OF HUMAN
COST OR FINANCIAL COST. IT’S MADE HIM A
PLAYER IN THE FUTURE OF SYRIA. I THINK HE’S GOT
TO BE FEELING PRETTY GOOD. MY PROBLEM WAS NOT
PER SE SHORING UP THE REGIME. WE DIDN’T WANT TO
HAVE IMMEDIATE COLLAPSE. WE DIDN’T WANT TO
CREATE A VACUUM OF AUTHORITY. THE REAL QUESTION
IS WHETHER RUSSIA AT SOME POINT AND
IF SO UNDER WHAT TERMS WOULD BE
PREPARED TO THINK ABOUT A POLITICAL
TRANSITION. MY GUESS IS AND IF
I’M ON YOUR SHOW A YEAR FROM NOW,
WE’RE GOING TO HAVE A SYRIA WILL
LOOK LIKE THE OLD SYRIA IN SOME
WAYS. YOU’RE NOT GOING
TO HAVE A CONTIGUOUS
CONTINUE IN ANY MEANING FULL SENSE
OF OF THE WORD. YOU’RE GOING TO
HAVE A NATION STATE MADE UP OF
NATIONS.>>OBAMA SAID AT
THE BEGINNING OF THIS THAT THE
OBJECTIVE OF THE UNITED STATES WAS
ASSAD MUST GO. SHOULD WE ADHERE
THE TO THAT POLICY?>>IT’S A PRONOUNCEMENT NOT A
POLICY. WE TALKED BEFORE
ABOUT THE RED LINES. WHEN WE MADE
SPECIFIC COMMITMENTS, WE WEREN’T WILLING
TO FOLLOW THROUGH ON THEM. HISTORIANS ARE
GOING TO HAVE A FIELD DAY WITH
SYRIA. IT’S GOING TO BE A
DEBACLE AND ONE OF THE WORST PARTS OF
MR. OBAMA’S TENURE. WE CAN STILL HAVE
THE HOPE THAT MR. ASSAD MUST GO. WE SHOULD THINK
VERY HARD ABOUT WHAT WOULD TAKE
ITS PLACE AND EVEN HARDER ABOUT WHAT
WE ARE PREPARED TO DO TO INCREASE THE
ODDS THAT HE DOES GO AND IS REPLACED
BY SOMETHING BETTER. FOREIGN POLICY
CAN’T SIMPLY BE A SERIES OF SOUND
BITES. YOU’VE GOT TO BE
PREPARED TO NARROW THE GAP.>>OR GADDAFI MUST
GO.>>WE ARE WORSE
OFF AND LIBYA IS WORSE OFF. I DON’T THINK THE
SITUATION IN LIBYA EVER WARRANTED THE
INTERVENTION. WE SENT A TERRIBLE
MESSAGE TO THE WORLD. IF YOU GIVE UP
NUCLEAR WEAPONS, YOU BECOME MORE
VULNERABLE. YEARS LATER WE GO
IN AND REMOVE HIM. THAT TO ME WORKS
AGAINST OUR GOALS STOPPING THE
SPREAD OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS AS
ANYTHING ELSE.>>DO YOU SEE
ANYTHING FAVORABLE FOR THE U.S. IN
PUTIN’S WITHDRAWAL?>>WHAT IS STEP
TWO OR THREE OR FOUR? AND IS HE PREPARED
AT SOME POINT TO LOOK FOR SOME TYPE
OF A POLITICAL TRANSITION IN
SYRIA. THE ANSWER IS MAYBE. I’D CERTAINLY BE
OPEN TO TALKING TO HIM ABOUT IT. IT’S QUITE
POSSIBLE THAT IF WE WERE TO
CONTINUE TO GIVE HIM SOME POLITICAL
SPACE AND CREDIT, I WOULDN’T BE AGAINST SOME
TYPE OF A JOINT U.S.-RUSSIA DIPLOMAT INITIATIVE.>>WE JUST LEARNED
THAT OBAMA HAS ORDERED ADDITIONAL
AMERICAN TROOPS ON THE GROUND IN
IRAQ, AT LEAST FIGHTERS HAVE BEEN
NOTED IN IRAQ. DO YOU FAVOR MORE
TROOPS ON THE GROUND IN THE
MIDDLE EAST?>>ONLY A LIMITED
NUMBER. AND THAT WOULD BE
FOR THE PURPOSES OF TRAINING,
ADVISING AND SO FORTH. IF THE REAL
CHALLENGES IN THE MIDDLE EAST ARE
GOING AFTER GROUPS LIKE ISIS, NO, I
DON’T WANT THAT TO BE PRINCIPALLY AN
AMERICAN UNDERTAKING. EVEN IF WE WERE TO
DEFEAT THEM, WE NEED FORCES IN
PLACE TO HOLD THE TERRITORY SO SOME
OTHER GROUP DOESN’T EXPLOIT
THE VACUUM. THE THRUST OF OUR
POLICY NEEDS TO BE TO IDENTIFY AND
STRENGTHEN LOCAL PARTNERS.>>WE’VE GOT TO
WIND DOWN BUT WE ARE IN THE MIDST
OF A PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN. YOU’VE SERVED
THREE PRESIDENTS.>>FOUR.>>FOUR PRESIDENTS. AND YOU CERTAINLY
HAVE SOME OPINIONS ON THIS. WHAT ARE THE
QUALITIES AND QUALIFICATIONS
THAT YOU THINK GO INTO A GREAT
FOREIGN POLICY PRESIDENT?>>THE BEST THING
I WORKED WITH WAS 41, GEORGE HERBERT
WALKER BUSH BY THE WAY HE HANDLED THE
END OF THE COLD WAR, THE GULF WAR
AND SO FORTH. YOU WANT SOMEONE
WHO HAS EXPERIENCE,
JUDGMENT, SOME KNOWLEDGE OF THE
RELEVANT HISTORY AND HAS ALSO A
GOOD JUDGMENT OF PEOPLE. HIS SENIOR LAWSUIT
JIM BAKER.>>RICHARD HAAS.>>THAT WAS AN EXTRAORDINARY
TEAM. THERE WAS INTANGIBLES. YOU WANT KNOWLEDGE,
JUDGMENT AND SOMEONE WHO’S GOING TO BE
CAREFUL. THE UNITED STATES
IS THE LEADING POWER IN THE WORLD
AND WE’VE GOT TO BE VERY CONSCIOUS
OF WHAT WE DO AND DON’T DO. WE HAVE TO
RECOGNIZE THIS WORLD IS NOT GOING
TO ORGANIZE ITSELF WITHOUT US. WE’VE GOT TO BE
CAREFUL AND WE’VE GOT TO UNDERSTAND
WE CAN’T DO EVERYTHING
EVERYWHERE. SO WE’VE GOT TO BE
SMART ON WHERE WE CHOOSE. JUDGMENT AND A
STRONG TEAM AT THE WHITE HOUSE.>>WHAT SHOULD BE AT THE TOP
OF THE PILE IN THE INBOX OF THE NEXT PRESIDENT OF THE
UNITED STATES?>>IT’S GOING TO
BE A VERY HIGH INBOX. WE TALKED ABOUT
ONE, WHICH IS NORTH KOREA. WE TALKED AND
CHINA. WE TALKED ABOUT
STABILIZING EUROPE. WE ALSO DO HAVE TO
LOOK AT DOMESTIC ISSUES. WE SHOULD BE
GROWING MUCH FASTER. GOT TO LOOK AT THE
QUALITY OF OUR SCHOOLS. GOT TO LOOK AT THE
QUALITY OF OUR INFRASTRUCTURE. IMMIGRATION,
HOMELAND SECURITY. WE’VE GOT TO LOOK
AT ALL THE THINGS THAT MAKE US
STRONG SO WE ALSO HAVE THE MEANS,
THE FOCUS AND THE CAPACITY TO PLAY
AN ACTIVE ROLE IN THE WORLD.>>THANK YOU FOR
COMING BY. TUNE IN NEXT WEEK
FOR MORE CONVERSATIONS IN
THE DIGIT AGE. I’M JIM ZIRIN, TAKE CARE AND
ALL
THE BEST. [THEME MUSIC]

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