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tv   Book TV After Words  CSPAN  January 30, 2012 12:00am-1:00am EST

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program commentating. but it sounds like you have a bit of a speech impediment now. what's happened to you? >> i do. i never knew it existed and i never smoked, never drink much, never smoked at all. i've survived but now i'm trying to live beyond surviving. ..
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he taxed at the national journal chief correspondent, michael hirsh. postcode.your brzezinski, welcome to "after words." and you were book, the grand chessboard in 1998, which was well received, you wrote that america is not only the first tussle is the only truly global superpower, you wrote that it's
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also likely to be the very last. is this book in some way, your current book a sequel to that earlier book and a sense that we now have what you call a crisis of global power? >> guest: unavoidably it is. to be perfectly frank, i thought that america might be the last, that they would last longer. and i think it is now clear that we are moving into an h. in which imparts because the buyer missteps, but in the larger measure because of the changing character of the global condition, the world is no longer says that the goal to domination by single power. >> and this book, you talked about a 500 euros a period of domination at the atlantic
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powers started with europe and ended on the other side of the united states. the shift towards asia and the end of the era of u.s. global supremacy, you talk about the need to put a quote and large the concept of the west as a way of familiar reading the effects of this change. can you elaborate on what you mean that if we don't thought to pose a dire consequences could ensue. >> guest: it's not on the question of power. it's also a question of philosophical, ethical, moral content. if we are to have a world in which people eventually managed to cooperate to self govern themselves on a global scale, we have to have a world in which there is to some significant degree a universal political culture.
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and i do believe that all of its historical shortcomings and i'm scared and in my book and discussing the shortcomings because they have to be admitted, for all the shortcomings, the west does today represents the most except to go unworkable universally workable political culture, which is respect for others, self determination and constitutionally sound, respect the law and accept them for certain basic rules based on certain for what is good and bad. that is the central message of the western addition of course to type in a logical initiative, innovation preeminent and in some respects, power. so my argument is the west to maintain itself to preserve what is value about it has to pay nnm
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that role that avril is justified by the club scene to the west. but the west to perform that well also has to come whiter and embrace others better to date not yet part of the west. and i specifically focused very much not only anti-american european relationship as the heart or of the west, but on the shared made most of europe and north america to partake in that enlargement through inclusion co-optation in time, not instantly. of both russia and turkey into the west. and maybe some adjoining countries and between. that is part of the strategic message. and of course the other part of the book is how the united states and the west but particularly the united states
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should manage its relationship with the other half of the world, which for some time to come is likely to be centered preeminently and the fiery descent to some extent in southwest asia. >> let's talk about that in a moment. i'd like to hone in more on this question of the west and marching with ideas. during the cold war. , the west was more or less a concrete thing. you have nato, formal alliances, defense treaties. do you mean that the west should be enlarged in this sense has some sort of an alliance heckscher or a power block? raises some of the conceptual expansion of value systems which are referring? >> now, it's something else altogether. in a sense, it's all the things you mention the beginning. it doesn't have to be just one. in other words, i don't envision that must necessarily be
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composed of everybody in nato. but i do think nato is needed. one part of the west can be united in an organization that enhances security and gives recognition to the importance of security. you wouldn't have a wife, with simultaneous based on enlargement of financial and economic arrangements. but again, not necessarily to all parts of the west. think of the other members of the european union that are not in the euro sound. they are still both in the west and so forth. >> with that include potentially russia as a part of nato? >> i explicitly said i don't expect it to be soon. you have a lot of steps in between. eventually if russia wants to be part of larger security system, fine. but without it being spelled out necessarily in some sort of arbitrary fashion, russia also
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has to approve which define the west. if they should be promoted with an eye to what's happening in the east, and asia, the rise of china, are you talk about, the dual role of the united states in the future, it will remain in its early promoter and guarantor of greater and broader unity. in the east to distinguish america's role, saying we should be the balance there and conciliator between major powers. can you explain him or why need to be separate roles? >> in the case of europe, in two world wars we had to be engaged in these two world wars because
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these two world wars were still thoughts on the premise that dirt. it is correct to say and morally right to say that the world wouldn't be better off if the or with hitler. today that is no longer the issue in the issue is not going to dominate the world. the danger today in my view and if we do not do the things they say in my book and i'm thinking of it strategically, the world will calm to greater and greater turmoil, confusion. the world is now not only composed of competitive states they should we have possible cooperative states, it is also composed and this is a very major goal historical continuity. it is composed of what i call global political awakening. the population of the world that
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they didn't politically conscious. it's politically resentful. it's historically angry and therefore it's much more complicated process. nro not setting and particularly in the far east should be to balance between the major protagonists without doing what we did in europe, and getting directly involved in the conflicts. postcode you have been given a good deal of credit in the last year for your press events in receiving this global political awakening on the horizon because it seems to have been expressed in the arab spring movement. you talked about that in an op-ed piece back in 2008. >> guest: and even earlier in some of my books. >> host: thies, but how far
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does that spread now? does it spread to china quake that could be spreading to russia with what we see as a rebellion against vladimir putin's party. >> guest: i think it is spreading. it is a phenomenon. it's a universal phenomenon which nonetheless manifests itself with degrees of intensity and other places depending on circumstances and things which stimulate the awakening. generally speaking about is now politically awakened. in some places like in russia right now, we are beginning to see the emergence for the first time as something which can be generally called a civic society. that is to say part of the middle class, more the younger people in the middle class, and people who are now to sonics got physically comfortable in people who are now part of the road because of the internet, but
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more importantly because of travel and education, we don't have that yet in china. it may come. in fact, i argue in my book that by 2015 and their elected to have, and maybe even earlier. but it will take my time in part also because of the chinese government, which has different values and priorities than the ones i've spoken of. like the soviets are even i might 10 is an intelligent government. it's more sophisticated. it's more skillful and very important economically. that creates a greater degree of stability and also continuity and also capacity to resist the process of change. >> host: let's talk about that a little bit because you do talk about contrasting a rising china with the two major powers during the 20th century that you say it got caught up in
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self-delusion about how powerful they were projecting that power. one of course was in germany and the other was the soviet union. a >> guest: excuse me for interrupting. there was a third that deluded itself more nicely. but equally wrongheaded they. that is to say the united states, which proclaim in the last 20 years for clinton the same night, george w. bush was the night and a match with unilateralism that became self destruct dedmon self isolating. but china, fine, they seem to be very, very cautious in strategic approach to economic rise. but isn't natural, particularly when you have a very rapid rise of a power bat to hubris self-delusion sets in, perhaps it is too early for china to
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reach that point, but she talked quite a bit in your book about the pitfalls of a rising china. how well do you think they can remain in an intelligent pricing power. >> i'm going to be resistant to respond nonetheless because i feared to tendencies in our view of china today in the united states. one is to demonize them. out of concern. i think we are over doing that already. the other one is take refuge and the assumption that automatically china is going to fold and quietly say to ourselves, it's a challenge but they are going to wreck themselves. maybe neither will happen that much. but there is no doubt there is a tendency in china towards triumph in the sun, which itself deceptive and i argue in the book cautiously that russia may be an example of something that china may be able to avoid for a
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while and postponed, but nonetheless cannot entirely a date mainly. and i soviet union you have a self-select and delete. that was perpetuating itself in overtime because it's an arbitrary of the comment it isn't only but also suffers a gradual degradation of this quality. i think they are aware of it. for example, i've already introduced a periodic, systematic regular ice fish sheds that the leadership every four years. it's very good. that will get the more innovation within the leadership. but to the extent that it is so controlled and arbitrary, it cannot entirely avoid the risk of a gradual decline of quality because it does eliminate certain sources of innovation, alternative modes of thinking,
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new ideas or whatever. >> and you know, a number of observers, experts suggest that there will be some kind of her reckoning, particularly with their political system in the way that you describe or something worse. but it does seem the current policy of china does seem to be, i wouldn't call it humility because you talk with the east asian leaders. the chinese to seeing the like to throw their weight around in the region away, but it does seem to be rather restrained in terms of projecting themselves of a global power. in your book you say that their global calling card as you term it is china's extraordinary gdp growth. but again, i wonder what that last? right now we haven't seen too much of a desertion of the china
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model, alternative model to the west, even though one hears the term asian consensus occasionally. but do you think we will see that? >> guest: we are beginning to see it. i cite in my book and examples of chinese triumphalism that kind of pounding your chest and san macau were we are doing and how bad you are doing and there's more and more of that. even though very explicitly in a format i can't exactly re-create to be restrained, not to take too much credit into the patient. there is still a great deal of patience, but also some triumphalism. that is inherent in that situation. nonetheless, look, china is a state to 6000 years and for most of its history with successful. the last century was extremely
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bad for china. perhaps the worse because in addition to the disarray, and experience before, they were humiliated from the outside. that was a culture shock, which they resent to this date bitterly and if you provoke them, it erupts violently. and because of that, i think the chinese are going to be very deliberately self-conscious about how well they do, how badly do i maybe they will not make these mistakes, for some of us at least self-serving they tend to anticipate because they thing the thought is that the chinese solitaire that will kind of relief s. the blemishes of lack of success. >> let's go back to the question of how the u.s. is or is not managing this crisis of global power as you turn it. at one point in your book, you
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criticize president obama because you are right, he is quote failed to speak directly to the american people about america's changing role in implications and demands unquote. can you explain that criticism and why you think you still to do that. >> what i meant if he hasn't done a sufficiently because they do give him credit for several speeches, particularly in the early phase of this president be, which he demonstrated to make you a great deal of historical acuity, namely a sense of really what is happening in the world, how it's changing. the persistent than not, in part because he discovered the implication of doing it certain names which may be difficult or unpopular and held that. and he faces additional difficulty that in my judgment, the american public is so woefully ignorant about the
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world that this is a monumental task far beyond even the president coming at the president has to take the lead. we also have to think very hard about our educational system and our informational system because today, and i demonstrate this with statistics and that. the american public is just appallingly ignorant. about global geography for international affairs are sick africans abroad. most americans live in a world in which they are forced first of all to make a living and secondly in which they escape from the difficulties of struggling into a world not of information, but as entertainment at the lowest level. >> could you elaborate what sort of unpopular things would president obama or one of the successors of president romney or someone else need to do that they are not now doing to prepare america for this new
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role in the 21st century? >> one is due some of the educational work. but i'm saying if you were to do that. he's got to have a system which is encourages a responsiveness to the input from the president, which means an educational system, which tells people what the geography of the world a much geography and plays. i statistics in my book which shows that americans to a significant degree couldn't identify the pacific ocean and during the war in iraq couldn't find iraq on a map in many cases. and we have an educational system which gives americans little perception of what the outside world is about, which make people susceptible to demagogy could for example after 9/11 that kind of tendency to identify the horrible events totally what the world of islam is first of all wrong factually.
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secondly, very dangerous and damaging to us. so those are some of the examples of what has to be overcome on a systemic scale. not just a single individuals. but through a process does self awakening that if we are to live in a world which is increasingly interdependent and not just me, but the rest of the web is assertive, we have to learn how to read to the world by knowing what it is like and how its problems are our problems and how our problems can be made to be their problems. >> if america does go into a long-term decline does not manage its internal problems and away you go into one detail in your book about what will the consequences be? you talk about a number of a few call them geopolitical but then
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of this process. can you talk about that a little bit? who were the biggest that guns be? >> guest: i think america falters. it is not a world dominated by the chinese, but the world will be increasingly chaotic because i don't see in the next 20, 30 years, any country, even a successful china being able to play the kind of role we thought we could play, we've tried athlete to play in the last 20 years and i don't think that can be undone. goes back to what we started talking about earlier. but in so far as sort of july and the question of imminent death systems, there are certain number of countries of the fault lines between the major powers. i mentioned some of them. church or for example would be one example.
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that's not just a small country. it provides a major services energy to your. there are major consequences to deprive its independence. if ukraine gets russia much more slowly but be less likely to take place. >> does it happen as a process of russia's feeling the power? >> south korea could be china and north korea. could be a number of other countries. even israel if we are pushed out in part because of our own mistakes and israeli conflict goes on. but the united states is out of the picture. what are the prospects of long-term security prospects for israel. not a very hopeful prospect is so these are some of the uncertainties that would arise
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for countries that i called the endangered species in endangered states. >> , it's well military power be part of the equation, particularly when it comes to asia? a number of us journalists have spoken to officials lately about what is described as a reorientation of u.s. power towards the asia pacific with an eye to a rising china in the wake of the withdraw from iraq and afghanistan? i think president dibona sees this as something as a corrective to too much focusing too much application of u.s. resources to the middle east. and there is some evidence that there is even something of an arms race going on between the u.s. and china ended very much of a changing world for what has traditionally been that projection of u.s. power in the
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asia pacific and south china sea, where u.s. carriers are now vulnerable to being increasingly impressive tech policy of chinese ballistic missiles and so forth. so it is a very complex picture. can you sorted out a little? i know you addressed it in your book. >> guest: let me first of all say what i do thing an american engagement in the far east across the pacific is a natural thing for us to undertake. i do not think the way to define it is to somehow or rather relate its greater significant far as to the declining military rule of the united states and southwest asia, specifically a msdn and iraq. i do not think it is particularly affect his or persuasive to even illustrate it by announcing they are going to deploy 500 marines announced
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really a. i find that to be on the verge of absurdity. what it would imply in a larger sense i also disagree with because it would imply we were really serious that we are going to do in a show that we did. our earlier discussion i do a difference between what we have to do in europe with what is today needed in the far east because we are not going to dominate the far east. and we don't need to engage in some sort of a cold war with china. we are smart and china needs us. just as many china. we will do much better by doing what britain did in europe during the 19th century, which is try to balance between the major asian powers. the hope is therefore by maintaining a situation where no one sees itself so powerful that it can use for zimbabwe at the same time do what we can to promote what we hope to promote
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injuria. we hope to promote injuria german reconciliation. that in turn led to german polish reconciliation. polish russian reconciliation may be next on the agenda. i think we could do a great deal of protect teen japan and remaining allied to promote the reconciliation. they can do the same between china and india, at the last thing we should be doing a signaling will not be militarily somehow can maintain an asian balance of an asian powers rising that as likely to be very nationalistic and could be easily provoked in intensity towards us or among each other. we may even find them and asia that either release the tragedy that europe experience in the
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20th century or they find ourselves drawn into conflicts as parties to conflicts on the asian mainland and i find it hard to imagine anything more self-destructive for the united states in fact. >> host: well, from everything and her stand the pentagon is planning for some kind of military contingencies in asia and the asia pacific, air sea battle -- >> host: for a while? we are obviously engaged to the security of japan. we are committed to freedom mitigation. at all say the pentagon planning for work. either involving korea and china, japan in some fashion or involving india, pakistan and china in another fashion. >> host: you seen your book the u.s. should not allow itself to be drawn into a war. you say here for the security treaties that japan and korea.
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but what about taiwan? because we are still somewhat found by the. the 1979 -- >> guest: i address specifically that issue in the book. i say it's a matter of common sense, we have to face the fact that we as a country have recognized under president nick green and secretary kissinger at the notion that both taiwan and china say there's only one china. we also have to face the fact that if we want to have a stable relationship with china, we cannot indefinitely keep arming taiwan so they can remain separate from china, even though at the same time china is increasing links with the mainland and vice a versa, this rapidly growing trade, more importantly movement of people. ..
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on unification. we talked about china and protocols, and i told him look, don't expect us which he wanted us to do. don't expect us to accept your
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demand we will not sell arms to the taiwanese. we cannot do that because if we did that there would be a people in the area. that would permit the stable relationship between you and us and you could draw us into some sort of conflict. let us accept the principle that this would be to some extent government, governed by the process of historical change and history will resolve it and we have already accepted under our predecessors nixon and kissinger the notion of one china so this will work out but let's not try to accelerate to the point that it backfires. in the long run or not. then later on when i visited china as a private citizen he used the occasion of my visit quite deliberately to have together talking he issued a statement which accompanied that photograph to the effect china
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has to prop the gate to china the two systems, and use that as the basis of the relationship with hongkong, and that includes an effect a great deal of autonomy of the presence and the chinese army in hong kong. i have since then started articulating a point of view which i shared. china and hong kong have another kind of arrangement, specifically in in that case excluding the deployment of the chinese people's army one by one. it's a process. it's a historical process, and if you have a historical
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perspective as they do and we should with 6,000 years or 200 years and it's going to work out. but you draw sharp winds or insist on immediate change neither will work. >> certainly the system seems to have worked in hong kong. as of the hong kong economic system has been allowed to prosper. >> one china, several systems. >> let's just talk a little bit more about what the u.s. should be doing or is perhaps doing wrong bell. you made a reference to deployment and u.s. marines and australia somewhat dismissively but as i understand this is part of a very concerted effort at
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alliance building by the obama administration in asia renewing ties with the philippines even hillary clinton's visit to myanmar, the first visit to that country under its military recently was described to me as part of an effort to build up ties with a circle of countries that have had a somewhat rocky relations with china. the chinese have not reacted well to this official and semi-official. they see this encirclement in the containment. do you think this is not a wise policy that is being pursued or do you think that it can be conducted better? >> i would say that it is an unobjectionable policy, on objectionable. if it is not a vulgarized by
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wordings which if it connotations which are in my judgment not in our interest and probably not implemented because i frankly don't think whatever our intentions are and i would say to defend burma and hanoi for that matter so i see no point in producing degradation by using words or engaging in a symbolic actions with the intentions were not the intention is to serve our national interest because the fact of the matter is the united states is not going to have the power to be the arbiter in the far east the way it could be and was in europe. we can be a player but we have to be a player much more sophisticated like great britain and europe in the 19th century and that is what i argue in my
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book. >> host: you think u.s. administrations could clarify better what they will or would not do in asia in terms of actions that might be taken outside of the already binding relations that we have with japan. >> guest: we could have about our objectives and not stampede in terms of theorizing about particular mostly military strategies and this sort and i think we probably will have to ask ourselves how long will the chinese feel comfortable with american overflights right on the edge of their territory how would we like them on the edge of california not necessarily
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with a demonstrable presence in the immediacy of the seaports. how would we feel this was reciprocated? we have to have the notion that in the changing world in which it is no longer possible for any one power us or anyone else to the traditionally dominant how do we define the leading role in a more sophisticated fashion? >> host: as the chinese become more sophisticated at military technology that includes long-range ballistic missiles that can reach as far as 1700 miles away apparently right now as well as cyber warfare i would think that it would be why is for the u.s. to pull back even more. >> guest: we have not to do that with russia. what i'm saying about us and the chinese is in no way different
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from what we have learned in our relationship with the russians. they can destroy almost all american cities in the course of six hours. i have to deal with that in my official capacity i was supposed to be responsible for coordinating committee and we could write off all of russia in six hours. if we continue to maintain the kind of competition that was characteristic of the 20th century, we will end up with the same position. >> host: in an arms race we may already be entering one right now. in your book you talk about the new concept of global systemic rivalry. explain for me what you mean by that. >> guest: when i wrote this i said to myself it was a surprise
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to me when i thought of it and i said i looked around and didn't find any indication. it was a very simple idea mainly today when you talk about america and china or america and russia, what ever, you can get a slew of statistics and comparison injury s activities and crime and corruption and are met and per capita income and you have instances of the comparative which assess progress and standing and rivalries and so forth and it dawned on me that it is in the case as recently as 150 years ago. maybe even as recently as the eve of world war i. people were not aware of these dimensions. today we live in the world that is now so interactive that we
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are comparing ourselves and measuring ourselves precisely and in a way it's a good thing because this kind of systemic rivalry puts much more emphasis on who has hyperion who has lower child mortality. what is longevity in the respective countries and the standard of living, what are the levels of education, how is medicine dispersed and so forth. i think it leads to a much more sophisticated notion of competition. in the world in which everyone now claims a rightful share to a decent life and is keenly aware by watching every day this place of great wealth come self gratification, extraordinary greed. >> and less lethal in the days compared to as you say when the
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empire is right with each other, great powers. as a question of how much you have in your treasury and how good your military prowess was. now we have the entire social systems and heating. but i also wonder whether in the era when as you said the world is coming together and there is more similarity between political economic and social systems setting aside the chinese political force system for a simple but with the enlargement of the west whether perhaps not unlike the earlier one was a question of how much you had your treasury and how big your military was now it is a question of how good your education system is and -- >> guest: the chinese are the first to produce their global comparative analysis of the leading universities of the world they produce a report in the leading 500 universities of the world, and it is a
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reasonably good report without any hesitation to the first 20 as the two exceptions and they don't posture their own achievements but they do convey a sense of awareness that these disparities are significant and i think that's great. and also incidentally when you said earlier apart from the chinese when you said the system is more less universal, shanghai we think most american business in shanghai deal but different from new york city accept the part of the chinese structure. >> host: this is another reason why we have to leave antiquated notions of hegemony and military superiority and the old in peril jostling behind us and look at it in a very different way. >> guest: don't want to sound as a pacifist and i've already been accused of that but maybe that's coming with age, and yes,
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military superiority, no, military security, yes. but we have to be very deliberate that what i consider to be my security could be a source and vice versa and that is the name of the game. we must start moving in that direction already in the 1950's with the concerns about nuclear weapons, the first efforts to contain the scale of deployment of nuclear weapons, and it's now become more comprehensive. >> host: i would like to go back to your career. you eluted to this question of not having been accused of being a pacifist and indeed, during the carter administration, you were seen as the hard-liner on the soviet union and for influence with the secretary of state. >> guest: i wasn't fighting for -- [laughter] >> host: fair enough. but it is interesting that you
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did take a line seen as different from kissinger and detente is is some way a precursor to the reagan administration later took in raising questions about the viability of the system. you promoted the final accord focused on human rights, a great deal and of course the leader history of the decline and collapse of the soviet union indicates that the was a very significant factor as many groups in the soviet it was the beginning of the end. you know, i am just curious whether at this date three decades later you feel that you would have indicated in your views during those early discussions when the cold war was still going on. >> guest: at the risk of sounding soft promoting i have to say yes i do feel that way.
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i don't think that in any way i deplore the fact that reagan brought more of my program then the motions regarding to taunt. nixon basically had the status quo. you keep what you have, we won't meddle in yours. how do i view it as equally horrible, and i was always convinced that the soviet union had to be transformed encouraged to disintegrate, and i make no bones of the fact that helped make the process along. and it was a great blessing because it avoided the horrible
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explosion. but i think the world became immediately much safer with the collapse of the soviet union. and i think the global conditions today in the world are such that that kind of competition we faced with the soviets and earlier with the nazis is no longer relevant and therefore we have to have the kind of approach that you and i have been discussing over the last hour. >> host: that was my next question. is there any way in which those experiences that you had when you were a national security adviser under president carter informed the thinking in this book because it does seem as if the conclusions in the book as you just suggested are very different in approach from the hard-line approach that you are ascribe it to have during the carter administration. >> guest: i think the nature of the challenge has changed. in the carter administration and we are facing the soviet union which was body and the notion of
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the detente was the same time proclaiming that it would replace us and then would push us out of the game and would dominate the world. and in that kind of a zero sum game, i felt we ought to explore the advantages that we have and the weaknesses from which they suffer. i think today the issue is no wonder whether we will dominate the world or whether the chinese will dominate the world if we don't. i think the issue is we can all be consumed by mounting global turmoil which would unleash the residual forces of hatred and historical animists that dominates so much of human relations and therefore we have to be much more intelligent, much more prudent and return to our initial discussion and propagating successfully the peaceful values so that someday
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we move into a genuine global community that is based on the shared universal political culture with humanistic overtones. >> host: the aspect of that is the question of dealing with rising radical islam which is something again as national security adviser you were witness to in their early days of the islamic revolution in iran dealing with the ouster of the shaw, and of course we still confront the radicalized and potentially nuclear iran today that could upset the balance of power in the middle east. you talk about that. i need you to address it in your book about how that should be resolved based on your past
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experiences. >> guest: one has to differentiate between the review of the extremism more moderation and more narrowly the issue of iran. in regard to the fore we alluded to it in our discussion. namely it is as a minority in the world so even the minority phenomena of some significance if we are not careful, therefore we should be very prudent and not stimulating it in a kind of black and white confrontation with islamic fundamentalism viewed as a shorthand definition in my judgment is counterproductive. it also leads to the abuse of civil rights of many muslim americans in this country which is something we will come to regret in the years to come because we have been treating some of them very badly. but on the sort of geopolitical level we have to arrive at work with a moderate force in islam which are by far the predominant force is in islam and that
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ranges from larocco of the way to the nisha and almost other places in the fundamentalist extremist minorities, and it requires having a diplomatic intelligent approach to prevent them to stop helping them become the on iran we have the presidents of dealing successfully with the soviet and chinese nuclear threat. which is far greater and that much larger. i don't want them to have a nuclear bomb but i don't think we are going to war to prevent them from having it. if there has to be a showdown with iran over iran acquiring a nuclear weapon, once it is evident that they are acquiring at whether they are seeking it or whether they want to be close to having at but not getting at, then if we go to war we have to do it with others. it's not to be a repetition of iraq or afghanistan.
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if we go alone we will settle the consequences and those countries that could wish to be our rivals and under whose ennis we have no special-interest would take advantage of that russia and china and even india. i think the world would be laughing at us if we got involved in the war with iran in order to prevent iran from having a nuclear weapon. with the iranians have survived, they are an intelligent people even the defense minister of israel says that the iranians the moment they have their first they are going to attack israel and they are not in existential threat to the answer to start a war over that would be to plunge the global economy into crisis and engage ourselves in the prolonged conflict for those who don't wish us well. >> host: what more can be done? there is all the evidence that there may be a covert war map or
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a series of actions taking place which the u.s. and israel today may be to some extent responsible for. >> we have to be careful on that because if we are not careful, we will fuel the fundamentalism and it's not in our interest in our interest is to separate the two. because eventually many of the preconditions for the democratic revolution of iran is the kind turkey has experienced but we have to of a policy that limits the ability of the fundamentalist to be a threat or encourages even the political displacement. if we act engaged in activities which we wouldn't want others to pursue which means assassinating people come interfering and so forth, we perpetuate the regime and make it stronger. >> host: let's talk about what has gone wrong with the united
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states in our closing minutes here because you do go into some detail about that in your book, and it's interesting. there was another passage from your earlier book that came back to me where you talked about as we become increasingly multicultural as a society of the more difficult it will be to fashion a consensus on foreign policy except if there is a dramatic and foreign threat. it's interesting since then you wrote that in 1998, since then we have had 9/11, and yet we have this deep disagreement in this country over the conduct of the 9/11 response to the threat, the iraq war. we seem to have, if anything a much greater sense of division now and we had when jimmy carter was running for president against ronald reagan talked
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about how serious you think the problems are and how do we resolve them. >> i don't have recipes for an easier resolution. i think i have identified some of the problems. i hope i have in the book. i'm also trying to identify simultaneously some of the sources of recovery, some of the assets that we have that we could explore more effectively inviting drawing on those is a way to go and that brings us back to some of the discussions we engage in namely a great deal of the problem rests on the fact that america while engaged as a society is remarkably self isolated and we have to overcome that. we have to understand the world better and more clearly and one of the purposes of this book is not so much to provide a prescription for the solutions, but to provide a perspective on the world there will be healthier, more historical leave relevant and thereby also
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facilitate some of the needed domestic recommendations. i don't want to exacerbate the potential for that but i hope the book contributes to that to some extent because a great deal of the public discussion today in the united states, even about the domestic dilemma or about our foreign conundrums reflects extraordinary simplicity for the extremist positions get rid of the government and free america from the clutches of washington and stuff like that. what does it mean? what does that mean whose key members are profoundly ill and has to have medical care? what does it mean for people who had jobs for years and are displaced and cannot find alternatives? it's not responsive. for some of the basic problems of human existence in america it is a basic social dilemma.
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>> host: do you see as more polarized than it was in the late 70's leading up to the era of ronald reagan? obviously there was a very tough fight between reagan and carter, very different views. >> guest: i think there was less of a total cleavage, and the discussion for all of its shortcomings is a kind of simplification of the generalization. i think what is frankly on a higher level than the discussion that we have been listening to recently along with black and white and the president is accused of not being born in the united states or being a marxist socialist we didn't have that even in the dates between reagan and carter or mcgovern or nexium or between goldwater and johnson >> host: in the final moments
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i would like you to reflect back more on your time as the national security adviser in the carter administration how that informs your thinking now you were involved in the peace process in some ways the can't david accords that you are part of were the last successful u.s.-led negotiations and as we understand president carter was fearful camp david with president sought's help. i believe he said he welch at one point in your pajamas to make sure that he was okay. could you just reflect on that a little but? >> guest: i will just mention some movement since sadat wanted peace, but the basic lesson i learned from that on that specific issue is the
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palestinian problem will never be solved by the palestinians and israelis alone, the different reasons. they are divided. they are strong and entrenched. there is simply no point for the compromise. week after week compromise strong to compromise so there is to be a resolution it has to come from the outside. on the united states that has been determined and clear fashioning what will then become acceptable in the two parties and the historical perspective and the enduring and gives justice and self-respect to the palestinians and the determination as well and gives security in some respect and the permanent reconstructive role in the middle east to the fact if


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