Speaker: Condoleezza Rice, foreign policy adviser to Governor George W. Bush
Moderator: Charlie Rose, executive producer and host, "The Charlie Rose Show"
Council on Foreign Relations
New York, N.Y.
Thursday, October 12, 2000
Charlie Rose: Please join me in welcoming Condoleezza Rice. (Applause). If George W. Bush was president what might he be doing now with respect to the Middle East?
Condoleezza Rice: I suspect that any president of the United States would be doing much the same thing and that's first trying to get an end to the violence. Obviously nothing can happen until there's an end to the violence. And indeed, things looked as if they were going a little bit better for a couple of days, and then the events of today have certainly made it somewhat more difficult. And the apparent attack on an American destroyer, of course, complicates the situation even worse. Clearly what has to be done is that the parties have to decide to end the violence so that they can get about the business of making peace. And probably at this point, the moderate Arab states are as important as any other actors in trying to calm the waters. So I suspect there are a lot of phone calls in Washington these days, a lot of efforts to draw on long time allies, perhaps even the Europeans, to try to put some, I wouldn't call it pressure, to try to influence the parties to stop the violence.
Rose: What leverage do we have to bring, certainly parties that have the ear of Yasser Arafat to do the best that he can to cease the violence?
Rice: Again, I think the moderate Arab states may be the key here, Egypt, Jordan. Clearly, Arafat probably has the ability to get some of these people out of the streets. I can't say that he can get everyone out of the streets, but Barak had made quite a lot of progress. He tried very hard, putting a lot on the table. And it would really be a pity if this violence now made it impossible for them to deliver on the opportunities that were presented over the last several months. So the leverage really is just an incentive to try and get the problem solved, and the Arab states, the moderate Arab states, may be the best deliverers of that message.
Rose: What would you have recommended to a President Bush to do if the opportunity had come to veto the Security Council resolution?
Rice: Governor Bush has been very clear that he's not going to judge the tactical decisions that the Administration is making. It was clearly a one sided resolution, there's no doubt about that. And U.N. resolutions are U.N. resolutions. But the Administration made the decision within the context of a very difficult decision and Governor Bush has said he's not going to second guess that one way or another.
Rose: There's also much discussion about the U.S. role. I mean, how do you balance being a friend of Israel, a democracy and a long standing friend, the only democracy in the Middle and the role of an honest broker. This President has invested lots of time in trying to befriend Yasser Arafat, who is clearly the crucial figure who reject an effort by the Prime Minister to go further than any other prime minister of Israel had ever done.
Rice: Well, there's several things at play. First of all, we have to recognize that the circumstances that created the opening for direct Palestinian/Israeli dialogue really goes back to a significant change in the circumstances in the Middle East coming out of the Persian Gulf war and coming out of the collapse of the Soviet Union. First, with Madrid and then Oslo and then so on and so on. So America's role in the region as a whole and America's credibility in the region as a whole does have an influence on what we're able to do in the peace process. But every American president since President Carter has felt that he wanted to put one piece of the puzzle in place in the peace process. It's been bi-partisan, it's been a long-term effort. There can't be any artificial deadlines. These are very, very difficult issues. They may take a while to resolve. But the United States has to remember a couple of things. We have a valuable ally, not just ally, but friend in Israel. And you stand by your friends. And Israel is taking some significant risks for peace here. Even when Israel doesn't take risks for peace, Israel is our friend. But Israel is taking risks for peace. Barak has gone very, very far. Israel deserves our support. We do also have very good offices with a number of moderate Arab states. Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are states that might not have been in existence had it not been for the United States. We have long-standing relations with Jordan and Egypt. So I think we do have on both sides of the ledger, very good leverage, very good friends, but we have to remember that the relationship with Israel is special.
Rose: Is it your best judgment that those states missed an opportunity to encourage Arafat to pursue peace when he left Camp David and made his tour of those countries?
Rice: It appears that they may have missed that opportunity. Clearly, Arafat got the message that a unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state outside of the peace process would be a mistake, and that was a helpful message. And that message apparently came, not only from moderate Arab states, but from Europeans that might have supported him. That was helpful. But obviously with so much at stake, you would have hoped that there might have been more support for Palestinians to take the deal.
Rose: Let me turn to Yugoslavia. What's the significance of what's happened there, and how is it, in your judgment, connected to the rightness or the wrongness of the war against Kosovo?
Rice: The near term enabling condition was the war against Milosevic in Kosovo, which clearly put him in a position of international isolation. If you ask me, he should have been in a position of international isolation much earlier. I'm not certain that dealing with him as we did at Dayton didn't prolong his life in Serbia.
Rose: Wait. We should not have brought him in to Dayton, you think?
Rice: I think that hindsight is 20/20, but clearly we made something of a statesman of him at Dayton and he was being defeated by the Croatians and the Bosnians. He took the deal.
Rose: But would Dayton have been possible without his presence and the role he played?
Rice: Probably not, but the byproduct of that was that I think he got a longer life in Serbia than he might otherwise have had. But clearly the short term or the near term proximate cause was what happened in Kosovo. And we did the right thing. We did the right thing to stop him from running through the province. We did the right thing to use NATO as an instrument to stop what clearly have been a destabilizing factor in a region. We forget that when we moved NATO east, we moved pretty close to the Balkans. And so the Balkans were now in NATO's back yard, Hungary's back yard to be specific, and so we did the right thing. Now, the longer term, however, really has to go all the way back to 1989 and to the revolution that solidarity began. This is a tremendous wave of freedom that is sweeping all of Europe. And the incentives in Europe to join the community of free nations are very, very powerful. It isn't as if there isn't a better world out there than Slobodan Milosevic was able to offer his people in Serbia. So this is a large sweep in history and we have to keep that in mind as well.
Rose: Do you think that what's happened in the last week or two to Slobodan Milosevic, and coming on the heels of the war, what implications is that for another action like that by NATO?
Rice: Well, NATO's area, if you want to talk in the Balkans, hopefully there won't be any need for further action of that kind. We can hope that Milosevic is the last of the European dictators. Tudjman having died, Milosevic would seem to be the last great threat in that region. We would ...
Rose: Beyond the Balkans for NATO to take that kind of military action.
Rice: I think we would want to be very, very careful in transporting or making analogous what we might do in some other part of the world to what we were able to do in NATO. First of all, because we have a long-standing infrastructure in Europe, the NATO alliance, a set of security commitments there that are quite clear. And because you have the pull of a larger Europe, whether it's the European Union membership or anything else. Europe is different than some of the other places that we might enter civil conflicts. Now, we have to be warned, the last time we too a European strategy and tried to export it was when we took containment and thought that it worked in a place called Vietnam. So we have to be careful in taking strategies that are born of specific circumstances in Europe. And assuming that those same strategies would work elsewhere in the world.
Rose: That takes me to the debate and bigger questions of foreign policy. You advised the Texas governor as to this debate and were said to be the person who shaped his preparation more than anyone else. How do you measure how well he did last night.
Rice: I think he did very well last night because he was able to get across to the American people what those of us who have been working with him have known all along, which is that he understands these issues in depth, that he has something that he wants to say to the American people. I was really ... I remarked to myself at how conversational he was with the American people about these very, very difficult issues. He was able to communicate principles from which he would lead. And he was able to draw some very important distinctions. It's not easy to sit there and say, I think there have to limits on how the American President uses the American military in a time when the United States seems to have unlimited power.
Rose: But I didn't understand where he would draw the limits, other than in the national interest which gives a broad leverage to him.
Rice: Well, but I think he made very clear that he thought that militaries are essentially for the purposes of deterring, fighting and winning wars, not for the purposes of civil administration and nation building and long term peace keeping. And that's controversial. There's no doubt that it's controversial. But if you ask yourself, should the United States tie down its military in a number of civil conflicts around the world, you may get a different answer than if you ask should we go into a civil conflict.
Rose: When he said we ought to be humble, what did he mean and what was he referring to?
Rice: Ever since I first talked to Governor Bush about foreign policy, this has been something that has been on his mind. He feels very strongly that a country that wields as much power and influence as the United States could easily be perceived as arrogant in the world. That it could be perceived as we know best about everything. That we could be perceived as uninterested in what others think about their own future, rather with our American can do attitude, fixing it for everybody else. And from the very beginning, and in fact, it's kind of interesting, it got written out somehow, of his speech in the Reagan Library, but there was quite a long section on the need to be humble with power. So maybe it got written out in the Reagan Library speech, but he brought it back in the debate, so I'm very glad he did. It's an important point.
Rose: Do you think most Americans care about foreign policy when American lives are not at risk?
Rice: American's care about foreign policy. When I go out and talk to group, whether it's a rotary club or a boys and girls club, American's care about some issues. They care about trade. They understand instinctively, particularly in places like California, where I live, where you have export driven economies, that a free trade is important to the American economy. They care about the state of the military. Almost everybody has somebody who's either served in the military or is serving in the military or serves in the National Guard. And they've heard the stories about problems with morale and readiness. They're interested in those issues. But no, foreign policy, I'm an expert in foreign policy. I'd love it to be number one, two and three in the American psyche. But obviously, there are also other issues on American's minds. But they're not uninterested. And foreign policy is a kind of surrogate for Americans I think, for leadership, for trust in their president. Every American thinks of their President on the day when he has to go into the Oval Office and say, my fellow Americans, I have to do something hard.
Rose: It's confidence that they can handle the job if there is a crisis.
Rice: That's right. That's right. They want to be sure that on that moment they can handle the job.
Rose: Tell me what you felt like you had to do in terms of working with the governor, in terms of training him to communicate that particular point, that he was up to the job, because some have said that the debates were, when you shaved it down to the essence, it was about character versus competency. There are some questions about ...
Rice: I might argue with that characterization. I think it was about trust. Obviously the American people want to be sure that the President of the United States is someone that they can trust, someone that they want to have in their living room every night. And as I said, someone that they can trust on that most important day when you have to do something hard. But, Governor Bush came to this business with very strong principles about foreign policy. From the first time we talked, he talked about American military power and the importance of keeping it strong. He talked about friends and allies. And he was very influenced by something that George Schultz said which is that you have to garden in your alliances. That means you have to keep them us so that when you need your friends, you've called them before you have to call on them. He talked early on about the importance of putting Latin America, the western hemisphere, back on the agenda, which it had dropped off the agenda in American foreign policy. So he came with very strong views about what to do in foreign policy.
Rose: Came to the first meeting with you or came to this campaign?
Rice: Came to the very first time that we talked about it which was actually a little bit before he decided to run for President. This goes back to August of 1998.
Rose: At Kennebunkport?
Rice: At Kennebunkport, that's right. So he had very strong convictions about what he wanted to do. Our job was simply to take the various issues out there and walk through them with him, to work through them, to look at options for carrying out the agenda that he wanted to establish. And what he needed to communicate and I think what he communicated very well last night, was that he does lead from principle. But that also understands how to make a decision. You know, some of this talk about what people do and do not know about foreign policy, misunderstands what the President of the United States actually does in foreign policy. The President of the United States does not sit around debating with his special assistants the ins and outs of the Russian electoral system. That's a waste of the President's time. What the President must do is what any other chief executive does, which is to set an agenda, to develop options, to have people develop options, to make judgments, to convince the American people and perhaps, most importantly to work across the aisle to convince both sides of Congress, the bipartisan consensus.
Rose: But people will constantly raise this point about being President, and we know this because of what we know about the deliberation at the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis and President Kennedy. You have advisors advising different things. You can't just say, "I'm okay in this because I got Condoleezza Rice in the room or Colin Powell or George Schultz." You have to know and have the capacity to make judgments about conflicting advice.
Rose: How do we know he has that ability?
Rice: Because he's been a chief executive. He's had to do it. He's been in a job where the buck stops there in Texas where he had to make decisions among competing advice. You know, decision making in foreign policy is actually not that difficult than decision making in anything else. People will give you different advice.
Rose: The stakes may be higher.
Rice: The stakes may or may not be higher, depending on the decision that you're taking. But the fact is that people will give you different options. Any advisor will tell you gladly why they're right. If you're smart, as a chief executive, you'll ask them why might you be wrong. And what Governor Bush is very good at doing is probing and pressing and pushing his advisors to the logical implications of what they are suggesting. I've often thought that if President Clinton had asked Secretary Albright, when she said that Milosevic would cave in three days, why might you be wrong, we might have thought that differently. So, yes, people who are chief executives know how to deal with competing advice. It's what they do.
Rose: You are not running against President Clinton in this election. You're running against Al Gore, a Vice President. What is, in your judgment, coming out of the debate last night, in terms of the use of force, the governor seemed to be more reluctant to use American force than the Vice President. The Vice President seemed to be more of an interventionist. Do you accept that as a difference?
Rice: I had some trouble following precisely what the Vice President was saying about intervention. Let me separate two issues. One is, when do you use force. And it seemed to me that you got from both of them fairly standard criteria and also the notion that you do have to look at the circumstances. But, for what purposes do you use force and I thought you got quite different answers. Or for what purposes do you use the military, not really do you use force. I was interested that Vice President Gore talked about the Marshall Plan in regards to the use of force. The Marshall Plan was not about the use of force. First of all, let's be realistic, the United States was occupying Germany under terms of unconditional surrender. It was occupying Japan under terms of unconditional surrender and what the United States did at that period of time was to help reinvigorate local institutions with massive economic assistant at a time when those economies were flat on their back. But it was the economic assistance and then the private capital and non-governmental institutions and Marshall scholarships and Fulbright scholarships that reinvigorated those societies. So the question isn't should the United States be involved in helping other build democracy. It's what's the right instrument for that. And if you focus on the military as somehow a nation builder or the carrier of democracy, you forget that non-governmental institutions are sometimes much more effective. That economic assistance, the trade, the faith based institutions, universities are really, in many ways, America's strongest instrument.
Rose: Tell me what countries he might be willing to retire the debt or to excuse the debt.
Rice: I don't think Governor is yet in a position or ready to name countries.
Rose: But clearly, it's a principle that he wants to consider.
Rice: It's a principle that he wants to consider and I thought he laid out some of the criteria last night that he would consider. And I was very glad that he brought up helping with debt relief because there are a number now, of developing countries where we have emerging democracies where these populations have suffered under miserable governments for most of their histories, miserable governments where people have stolen the country blind and run up huge debt. Where you have cases of potentially good leaders who are not corrupt, who are prepared to make difficult economic reforms and changes at home, I think you ought to be willing to consider a change in the debt structure. And we've done it before, you know. The Brady bond were a kind of debt relief and debt restructuring for Latin America. And when I hear people talk about the hopelessness of Africa, for instance, I think back to, say in 1987 or 1988 in Latin America where you had a lot of countries heavily burdened with debt, where you had countries who were just coming out of military rule, military juntas for the most part, where you had civil wars in Central America, and with a fairly sophisticated plan, some 12, 13 years later, there are a lot of success stories in Latin America. So it can be done.
Rose: Did he mean to say ... I'm moving around to lots of places because we have a lot to cover in a small amount of time ... did he mean to say that Victor Chernomyrdin, the former Prime Minister of Russia, was, in fact, guilty of receiving IMF funds illegally?
Rice: What the Governor was saying is that it is well known that Victor Chernomyrdin, who was a part of the corrupt oil and gas industry of Russia ...
Rose: This is area of expertise.
Rice: Yes. And I don't think there's any secret about the privatization ... the way that the, quote, privatization of oil and gas in Russia took place over that period of time. Chernomyrdin was first Minister of Oil and Gas and then Prime Minister. His son was in (Inaudible). But, what is the connection to IMF?
Rose: Wait a minute. I just want to stay with Chernomyrdin.
Rice: No, no, I want to talk about what the connection is to IMF. If not IMF money ... it's very hard to trace IMF money. But what do we know? We know that oil and gas paid very little in the way of taxes, despite the fact that the IMF wanted to make that one of the conditions of Russian aid. And we know that that gap, between the taxes that oil and gas did not pay and what the Russians need was made up by IMF money. So Victor Chernomyrdin, oil and gas corruption and IMF largesse are very much linked.
Rose: And the Clinton Administration knew it and continued to have a relationship knowing that he was taking those funds, not some broad based link, but in fact that Chernomyrdin was guilty personally of receiving ...
Rice: I want to be very, very clear here. What the point is, that oil and gas in Russia lived off the largesse of the IMF by not paying taxes. That's how Victor Chernomyrdin then made his money from that oil and gas industry.
Rose: I forget for a moment ... what did the Governor say about Chernomyrdin, exactly the words?
Rice: I don't remember exactly, but maybe you do. (Laughter)
Rose: I don't remember actually. It seemed rather direct and rather forceful and I wondered whether people who were advising him ...
Rice: Perhaps maybe shorthand.
Rose: In shorthand and that you might have flinched when you heard him say that.
Rice: You know I don't actually remember the actual statement. But it was shorthand for a relationship between Chernomyrdin, oil and gas and the IMF, which, I think is pretty well documented. It's a very corrupt relationship.
Rose: What is your strongest indictment of the Clinton Administration's handling of foreign policy in the last eight years?
Rice: I think, absence of focus and a kind of inconsistency.
Rose: No grand strategy.
Rice: No strategy. A tendency to move from one thing to another. Everything kind of equally important. They've had some successes, there's no doubt about it. I think that what they did in Ireland, what the President did in Ireland was really an act of statesmanship. But if you look around the world and you look at what has happened to the American military while it has been engaged in operations that ... operations that are 300 per cent greater than at any time during the Cold War, and you ask to what purpose, you look at some of these operations and you think, what were we doing? Was it just that we didn't think through what the role of America's military was going to be. When you look at the lack of follow through with free trade. Which, by the way, I think, is one of the real indictments, that the President somehow didn't manage to get fast track authority when he had a chance to do it in, say, '94, is really an indictment of the administration.
Rose: Is it an indictment of him or is it an indictment of other democrats in the Congress.
Rice: Well, the President of the United States has to learn to work with the Congress to get done what he wants to do, and if the President wants to spend the political capital, he'll get it. And the fact is you left Chile out there, simply hanging, having been effectively promised that NAFTA would be expanded. And what has Latin America done in the meantime? It's made deals with ... well MERCASOR has gotten much stronger as a result with Brazil at its center instead of tending to cut off the United States. The European union, Jacques Chirac's been in Latin America four times in the last several years. Do you think it's just because he likes sight seeing there? No. In fact, because we've abdicated on free trade in this hemisphere, others are taking up the slack. And so it's that kind of lack of focus that I think I would make the largest indictment.
Rose: Has the Governor articulated a grand vision of foreign policy in this campaign, in a sense. Most of the people in this room would be hard pressed to say they have seen from the Governor or the Vice President, an arching sense of where we go in a post containment, post Cold War world. And if he did, has he done it yet, in your judgment? If not, what would it be? What will be the tenets of a Bush philosophy?
Rice: Well, the reason, Charlie, that I didn't want to indict anybody for lacking a grand strategy is I'm not sure a grand strategy is really necessary. We tend to think that containment was a grand strategy, it really wasn't, it was a strategy for Europe. So a strategy would do. Let's not get overly ambitious here. And clearly, for the United States, a this particular point in time, the goal has got to be to extend this period and extend these circumstances in which market based economies are growing as the only way to be a modern economy, open market-based economies. That is leading to finally convince countries that you can't be a modern economy unless you treat your people well, so democracy is also on the march. And so, if you think about this kind of great train that we're on, that where with the collapse of the Soviet Union and the collapse of the alternative paradigm, we have one paradigm for how to be a modern economy ... a modern state ... and that is the democratic and the market oriented. That's what we ought to be looking to spread around the world. Now, the United States then has to have some operational goals to get there. And to do that you first have to keep the peace. But you have to keep the peace in places of global strategic significance first. You have to be sure that the American armed forces are ready to keep the peace in the Persian Gulf, in the Taiwan Straits, in East Asia, in places of global strategic significance. That the United States armed forces are ready to support those who might be willing to keep the peace in places where there might be local large scale violence, East Timor with the Australians, Sierra Leone with the Nigerians. So keeping the peace is first. Secondly, free trade. Maintaining a structure of free trade and that means you cannot want the Seattle agenda ... and I say Seattle agenda and I hope people know what I mean, that you're going to load down every trade agreement.
Rose: You mean the agenda of the protesters in the street?
Rice: That's right. You're going to load down every trade agreement with environmental standards and labor standards that are going to make it difficult for, let's say, the South Africas of the world ...
Rose: But clearly, if you look at the World Bank and Jim Wilkinson, people in positions of power are suggesting that those have to be considerations in an age of globalization in a new century.
Rice: One can say that you can do this by command from the top and make sure that countries like South Africa that 40 per cent unemployment have 70 per cent unemployment, because they lose their comparative advantage for low cost, or you can say that it is the case that as countries become more prosperous labor standards and environmental standards improve. Nobody wants sweatshop standards in any of these countries, but anybody who makes the argument that when you have foreign investment in a country, conditions seems to get worse, is going to have a hard time making that argument. It just doesn't happen to have the benefit of being true. So I think that the Seattle agenda is a real threat. And it comes down, Charlie, to how you see a country as powerful as the United States. And the way that I think the Governor sees a country as powerful as the United States is effectively providing the structure for the international system. That means global security, that's why ballistic missile defense is important to us. We shouldn't be blackmailable, that's bad for the world. Free trade, that's a structural element. And then allies who can work with you, paying real attention to allies who can work with you as others try to democratize. It's a very powerful trend out there toward democracy in markets and if the United States plays its structural role, then we're going to extend it.
Rose: Two issues before this audience. Number one, the United Nations, where is the Governor in terms of American debt to the United Nations and his sense of the role of the United Nations in peacekeeping?
Rice: Well, the Governor believes the United Nations has an important role to play, potentially even in peacekeeping. But I think that he's somewhat skeptical of the idea that the United Nations could become a major force ... I mean military force for peacekeeping. You need, somehow, the discipline of nations, of states, to do that. I think he's rather more attracted to the idea of regional powers that may be willing to do peacekeeping in their own regions. And he cites very often, as he did the other night, I think Australia ...
Rose: With the participation of American troops?
Rice: With the help of American training, for instance, infrastructure, communications, but not American troops.
Rose: Even if it's regional and it's NATO, for example?
Rice: Well, NATO is somewhat different because of our Article Five commitments to NATO. That's the difference.
Rose: Okay. Second question, last question. Human rights. The Vice President mentioned human rights last night, the Governor didn't.
Rice: Yes. But the Governor talked about freedom. And I think that freedom and human rights tend to go together.
Rose: They were different in terms of code words or something you said?
Rice: No, I just think it's a different word for human rights. Freedom is the bedrock, that's the foundation of any notion of human rights. The Governor's been very clear that he believes that human rights, religious freedom, all of these things should be on the agenda when you talk to any leader, but that in some circumstances you're going to get further, let's take a country like China, as China liberalizes its economy, it's politic is going to liberalize and the Chinese are perhaps betting that that's not going to happen. But I think they're taking a bad bet. If they're taking a bet, they're taking a bet that the Taiwanese, the South Koreans, the Chileans all took and missed. So, sometimes you have to work from several different angles to get human rights, but the Governor believes that human rights and democracy are extremely important. It reflects American values.
Rose: Let's assume your dreams are answered and George W. Bush is elected President. And he says to you, "I want you to come to Washington with me." And he says to you, "There's always Secretary of Defense if you're interested in military issues, there's always Secretary of State if you're interested in diplomatic issues, and there's always National Security Advisor," and you know how important it is for the President to have someone that he's worked with, that he trusts next to him. What would you say?
Rice: Can we win the election before we start the administration. (Laughter) I've said it a thousand times, Charlie, if national football commissioner is an issue that comes up first, I'm gone. (Laughter)
Rose: Is that right?
Rose: I don't think Tagliabue is about to quit.
Rice: I don't know, you know. He's been there a long time. I'm waiting.
Rose: All right. Let me take some questions from this audience and if you'll just raise your hand. Walter.
Question: When you were talking about your indictment, to some extent, of the Clinton foreign policy, you said that they got involved and to some extent militarily committed and then must have sat up every now and then and said, what were we doing, what was the point. Would you go through a few examples of that and so we could see exactly what you might mean?
Rice: Let's take two examples of that. Somalia, two, not Somalia one. Somalia two. Somalia one started out as a humanitarian effort to relieve the famine. Pretty soon we were chasing Somali warlords through the streets of Mogadishu. Now, I think that you might ask yourself, why were we doing this, and if you had thought about it ahead of time, you might not have wanted to do that. Haiti. We have spent several billion dollars now in Haiti and we're going home. Is Haiti any better off, really, for what we did. Now I understand there was a refugee crisis when we went into Haiti. The Vice President talks about forward engagement and he says that means anticipating problems early. Well, you know, that's what diplomacy's supposed to be, so I would hope that you would have gotten to a Haiti, before you were facing a flotilla of refugees and had to send in the American armed forces to then try to put in place Aristide who turns out not to have been the great democrat that he sold him to be. It gets down, Walter, to really this question of what is it you're trying to do with the American armed forces. Are you trying to change the conditions on the ground so that political circumstances can emerge, which in effect is kind of what we did in ... didn't directly ... in Belgrade. Or are you putting the American armed forces in a position of separating warring factions and trying to install a government and keep it in place. You would think that we of all people would have learned that this is not a good role for the American armed forces. And not only does it deter them or keep them from doing the things that they need to be doing, I think it's demoralizing for them. So the people who have been to Haiti have left on a failed mission.
Rose: Do you have any differences ... does General Powell share your view on Haiti?
Rice: I don't know. You know, we've never talked about it. I think that he felt that he was doing a service to the President. But I actually don't know what his view is with Haiti.
Rose: Do you want to take another one? Did you finish that Walter? I'm not sure that ...
Q: I'm fine, Charlie.
Rose: Okay. Right here and then we'll come right over here. Yes?
Q: I'm Jay Golden. You spoke about Governor Bush's approval of the United Nations as a peacekeeping mechanism. What would be the rationalization for not having the United States participate in that kind of peacekeeping effort?
Rice: Well, I said, rather limited role for peacekeeping and what I really meant was when it really is peacekeeping, not peacemaking. The U.N. is not going to be very good in violent circumstances. When they're monitoring along the ... I was about to say against along the Israeli/Lebanese border, but that's not a very good example today, but when they're monitoring in, for instance, the Syrian/Israeli border, that's a role for them. I think that the rationale is that there's a division of labor in international politics, and the world needs one army, one big military force that is prepared for big war, that can deter war of global strategic significance and fight it if necessary. And there's only one army that fits that bill, that's the United States of America. Others can't do that. To the degree that we're doing myriad peacekeeping operations around the world, we're not training for the one thing that only we can do. And I don't see that as a put down or a condemnation of anyone else. I see it as a division of labor.
Rose: Yes, please announce your name as you make ... ask a question so that we can ...
John K. Galbraith: John Kenneth Galbraith.
Rose: Ambassador Galbraith.
JG: I was pleased to hear your reference to blackmailing with respect to ballistic missiles, because that's, in essence, what it's intended to do, to prevent being blackmailed, I guess. Would you proceed forthwith on the deployment of Aegis system on a maritime basis or go ahead with the Alaskan deployment in the (Inaudible).
Rice: It's a very good question. Governor Bush has said he wants to reserve judgment on which option until he's had a chance to really get inside and look. Now, one thing that is very hard in a campaign is that you're constantly being pressed to make decisions that really ought to be ... to await governing, when you have a full look at your options. But clearly, he's very attracted to the possibilities of Aegis for several reasons. First of all, because if you could marry sea-based mobility and with boost-phase intercept you would really have a quite effective system. You could also then think a little bit of ballistic missile defense like you think of the Seventh Fleet, you know, you wouldn't have to fix it at a site against a particular threat, but might be able to use it in a more flexible way. So the mobility of a sea-based system clearly provides a lot of very, very desirable characteristics. How far along the technology really is, what the costs really look like, we've not really been able to do very much in the way of testing, because of course the ABM treaty prohibits mobility. So, the first thing is to get the Russians, I think, to understand we're in a new environment, both of us are in a new environment, to move to a new strategic concept and to get some room to test other options which may be among our best options.
Rose: We'll take two more and then we go to Washington and come back here. Yes, sir. Start here and then we'll be right to you, sir.
Raymond Tanter: Raymond Tanter at the University of Michigan. As Charlie Rose mentioned, Dr. Rice, your former professor, Professor Josef Korbel, I believe, had a daughter and she became Secretary of State, Madeline Albright. Recently, she declared the term rogue state to be off-limits in the diplomatic lexicon. And it seems to me that states of concern might be too thin a term to describe the likes of Iraq, Iran, perhaps even North Korea and that rogue states might come back. What would you or the Governor say concerning this.
Rice: It's a goodIt's nice to see you, Ray. It's a good question. I don't know what to call them, Ray. Whatever you call them, they're bad. They're bad for the international system and they're bad for stability. I rather like rogue because I think it's outside the system. And if you think if what really makes ... what they have in common ... because they're very different circumstances. What they have in common is they actually have very little to gain by integration into the international system and almost everything to lose. And so, I think that's why people were attracted to the notion of rogue. But if we want to call them something else, it's fine, as long as we don't misunderstand what they're all about. And they're basically failed regimes that have no useful purpose in international politics. It's going to be very interesting to see, for instance, whether Kim Jong Il when confronted with the possibility of having to reform for some of the assistance he's getting, whether he's interested any longer in integration into the international system. So, I think, it's, you know, it's one of those kind of State Department things, that you sit around and worry about what to call them. I would just call them bad actors, I guess.
Rose: I want to go to Washington, but let me just follow up on this. Did I understand the Governor last night that he would do something different than this administration is doing with respect to Iraq if he was elected President? And when he'd talk about I'd be stronger if I found out that the Iraqis had nuclear weapons I would do something that ...
Rice: What Governor Bush has said is that several things have slipped since '91. First of all, the coalition has slipped. And he means, not just the Perm Five Coalition, but the Gulf Coalition itself. And I think, we're seeing some erosion of confidence in places like Saudi Arabia, Turkey, the countries that were so important because they're not so certain we're going to continue to contain Saddam. Secondly, that the sanctions have begun to erode. Yes, three flights or whatever it was that the Vice President said, have been slightly within ... but come on, the sanctions have begun to erode when people start taking commercial flights into Baghdad. The third point is, is that you have to support the opposition. And very little of the money of the Iraqi liberation act has actually been spent. And, yes, the opposition may, at this point, be weak and somewhat fragmented, but that was also true of the opposition in Serbia. And so you have to support them. And what the Governor has finally said, is, if you get a chance, and Saddam very often gives you a chance because sometimes he's his own worst enemy. Don't fly a plane toward Baghdad and turn it around.
Rose: What would hurt him?
Rice: Go after his military targets in a way that matters. You know, when he attacked people in the north we shot a few cruise missiles in the south and the CIA director said he was stronger than before we attacked him. What does that say about the use of military force? Use it decisively if you get a chance to use it.
Rose: Let me now go to Washington. Josette Shiner is there. There she is. You have some questions from the Washington audience. Thank you. Can you hear me? We can't hear her yet, so I hope we will. While they work on the audio, I'll take another question here and then I'll right back. The gentleman there first, and then I'll come over here, sir. Right there. Josette, let me know when you have audio and then we'll come back to you.
John Washburn: Okay and I'll yield when she does.
Rose: Thank you.
Washburn: I'm John Washburn of the Washington Working Group on the International Criminal Court, which betrays the subject of my question. The International Criminal Court has been a divisive issue between us and our allies whom you mentioned. You will have, in a Bush administration, an early need to make a decision about it since there will be a U.N. Preparatory Commission on the court meeting in March. And beyond that, it appears the court will come into existence in 2002, halfway through a Bush Administration term. Would a Bush Administration be represented at that meeting in March, and under what terms and considerations?
Rose: And before you answer that, let me just ... Josette, can you hear me now or can we hear you? I just want to make sure that the possibility of the audio from Washington is being worked on. Can anyone help me and tell me whether we have and can hear audio from Washington.
Rose: Well, we can't hear her. We won't know what the questions are unless we can hear her. Okay, you'll continue with this answer and then we'll come back.
Rice: Okay, I'll continue with the criminal court.
Rose: And I'll come here in the first round and we'll try to get to as many of you we can I promise.
Rice: Governor Bush has not yet taken a position on the International Criminal Court. I will tell you that I think there are concerns for a country like the United States because we are a target of ... I was deeply disturbed that someone would think it necessary to investigate whether NATO had committed war crimes in the bombing of Kosovo. I just found that appalling. And to the degree that we open ourselves up to indictments of American military personnel for political purposes, I think we have a problem. So he's not taken a position. He'll want to look at it. I don't want to preempt him in taking a position. But I will tell you I think there are a lot of worrisome aspects of signing on to ...
Rose: Okay. I continue to monitor whether we have audio from Washington, in the meantime.
Question: Okay, very good.
Q: U.N. resolution. William Safire in today's New York Times suggested State Department and CIA had recommended the abstention by the United States for fear of terrorist attacks on our embassies. It's also been suggested that we were desiring to placate the oil-producing states so as to arrest their willingness to cut supply, thereby raise prices and undermine our economic prosperity. Do you agree with the decision and if so, were these the right reasons for that decision?
Rose: I asked that earlier, but go ahead.
Rice: Well, Governor Bush has said he's not going to comment on every tactical move that the Administration makes. He's made very clear that he believes that you have to speak with one voice at this point and he is not going to criticize the decision.
Rose: Going now to Washington, Josette Shiner. Welcome.
Josette Shiner: Hi, Charlie.
Rose: How are you?
Shiner: I feel like I'm back on the McLaughlin Group here, I can't get a question in. (Laughter) Thank you for a very stimulating program, we've been enjoying it.
Question: You mentioned the Aegis system and the national missile defense option, that perhaps Governor Bush may be looking at. One of the reasons why the allies, both in Europe and, in fact, even in Asia, are having such difficulty with this whole national missile defense debate is because they will not be protected by the plan that President Clinton has proposed. Can you say a few words about how you would deal with the allies, both a theater and even a global system and some of the basic ideas that you would envision, that you would have or the goals that you would have for a global missile defense system that would be deployed. Thank you.
Rice: Thank you very much, Ken. Governor Bush has made one of the criteria for any national missile defense system, that it is capable of protecting our allies. Indeed, I'm not surprised that the allies reacted badly to the decision for the Alaska site. Because we didn't talk to them about it for a very long time, presented them with a fait accompli and then the fait accompli didn't protect them. It's not surprising that they didn't like this idea. And so one of the things that he's committed to is that in principle it has to protect the allies. Precisely what system you choose also probably should be talked through with the allies. This is one of those process steps that I don't think you can skip. It is one of the criteria. The other criteria are that we would have to be able to protect American forces abroad in some fashion and that would be able to deal with limited attacks from rogue states, states of concern or bad actors from wherever it was launched. And so there are obvious reasons that mobility may be one of the best answers to the myriad kinds of problems that you would face. I really do believe that we are in a position to do something effective for missile defense. I'm really quite struck that people who say well, the tests have failed. Well, we're three tests into a 19-test system. We probably haven't even tested our best option. And if I told any of you that 25 years ago, you know, that I was going to give you a computer on your desk that was as powerful as a Cray because of this thing called a silicon chip, you might have thought I was out of my mind. Well, why are we so uncertain that the technological prowess will be there to do this?
Rose: Governor Bush told me in an interview that it'd be fair to consider sharing it with the Soviets, with the Russians.
Rice: He has said that he would. And I just want to make one point about this. You know, we actually had talks with the Russians about sharing ballistic missile technology at the end of the Bush Administration. They were stopped by the Clinton Administration in 1993. We might have been quite far ahead in thinking about this. But sharing can go from sharing the system to sharing technology to sharing warning to sharing data. And one of the problems with the Russians is that they are a major proliferator to the very states against which we are trying to protect. So there are some problems with sharing, but we would certainly want to consider it.
Shiner: We have another question here. Could you please introduce yourself?
Question: In yesterday's debate, Governor Bush said that he viewed Africa as important. But then he went on to specify that his priorities would be in other regions, Europe, the Middle East and what not. Now, arguably, this characterization as Africa as important but not a priority reflects the status quo, because even though Africa has gained in visibility, no one would say it's overtaken these regions as a priority. But most of the interpretations of Governor Bush's statements on Africa that I've seen seem to indicate that Africa would regain its former obscurity among top policy making officials under a Bush Administration. And I wondered if you could comment whether or not a Bush Administration would continue to build on the relative importance accorded to African issues today, and if so, how?
Rice: Well, thank you very much, I'm very glad you asked the question. And indeed Governor Bush believes that Africa is important and in fact, Africa, of course, is a continent. There are countries in Africa for which there are great opportunity. He me, for instance, with President Mbeki and was very impressed with what the South Africans are trying to do. I think there really is three pronged approach to Africa. First of all, you want to try and extend, at least to certain anchor states in Africa, new emerging democracy like, potentially Nigeria, if the corruption problem can be dealt with. Certainly, in a democracy like South Africa. Potentially, if Ethiopia were to end its war with the Eritria, Ethiopia might be one of those anchor countries. To extend to them the possibilities for prosperity that come with freer trade and with opening of markets and Governor Bush would be very interested in doing that. A second point is that you have to help Africa with the burgeoning civil conflicts, but as I said, probably emboldening and enabling African countries to deal with those civil conflicts. And the Governor was therefore very supportive of the idea, though the devil's a bit in the details here, of supporting the Nigerians in their efforts in Sierra Leone. Third, there are humanitarian issues. And here, let me just take the AIDS crisis as an example. I know that it's been said, perhaps by Vice President Gore, that the AIDS pandemic is a national security priority. Well, I don't know what it buys you to re-lable this. In fact, I think it may lead you to solutions that are probably not appropriate to this one particular crisis. What have we learned about AIDS? Yes, you need money for treatment and so forth. But you also need massive educational campaigns. And non-governmental organizations are probably going to be much more effective in going village to village in Africa to deal with the AIDS crisis. And there are countries that have done relatively well. Uganda is a country that has begun to reverse its problem with AIDS. So why are we not talking about the Ugandan experience and learning from their experience in dealing with this, rather than arrogating into ourselves, know it all about how to deal with the AIDS crisis in Africa. So yes, the Governor would pay very strong attention to it. Africa is important. It, too, is important as a source of important resources, including oil. But it's also a continent that I think has some real hopeful signs and you would want to encourage those and push them forward.
Rose: All right, thank you Washington, and we'll be back to you. Let me just take ... this question comes from California. In fact, this one comes from Sara Sewell-Carson of the Human Rights Policy at Harvard University in which she says, "Are there any circumstances in which the scale of gross human rights abuses alone should compel the American use of force?"
I think you can never say never. Of course, there may well be. One has to be very clear though that human suffering, man's inhumanity to man, very often has a political root, that what we tend to call humanitarian crises are usually humanitarian outgrowth of political circumstances. A famine is not just a famine. A famine us usually the withholding of food for political purposes. So, ask yourself are you prepared to go in and try to do something about the political circumstances and you might get a different answer.
Rose: Let me go to somebody else. Over there yes, please.
Ponchitta Pierce: Thank you. Ponchitta Pierce, just to follow up on Charlie's earlier question to you when asking perhaps ... recognizing at first the Bush Administration would have to get in, secondly, the sports commissioner would not be available. Thirdly, of the three positions, Secretary of State, Defense, which do you feel you might be most effective at? (Laughter)
Rice: Oh, I don't know. Look, I'm not even sure that going to Washington is the right thing for me. We'll just ... we'll try to win the election first and then we'll see. I really don't know. I really don't know.
Rose: If she knew, she wouldn't tell us now.
Rice: Governor Bush is going to have to make that decision.
Rose: Speaking of Governor Bush ... as we get the microphone over here ... tell me one significant difference between the foreign policy views of the Governor of Texas and the former President of the United States who share the name Bush.
Rice: The Governor of Texas is a Texan and a Governor. And he has much stronger views I think, about, for instance, the importance of Latin America and Mexico. He is very clear on the importance of this hemisphere. That is something that he brings to this that probably no candidate for the United States has brought in like ... You know it's really wonderful to go with him to Mexico and watch him speak to them in Spanish. It's really wonderful to go across the border and see that he's cheered by Mexican citizens as much as he is by Texas citizens.
Rose: So one thing you're saying is that in a Bush Administration there would be more of a focus on Latin America than there has been in the past by any administration.
Rice: Absolutely, by any administration.
Rose: Right over here and then we'll try to wrap this up very quickly in the next five minutes.
Question: Charlie, when you and I several years ago were out in Aspen ... you don't remember we were there together because there were a few hundred other people.
Rose: Of course I do.
Q: One of Dr. Rice's mentors, George Bush ... George Schultz, criticized the early Clinton Administration for having a one-issue foreign policy toward China. And I was wondering if you could broadly define, to use your words, strategy toward China.
Rice: China requires us, Joe, to do something that Americans are not always very good at, which is to be nuanced. Because on the one hand we clearly have security problems with China. China is a problem for us in that they resent American's presence in East Asia. China is a problem for us in South Asia. Some of the things that they are doing in Pakistan. China is a problem for us in the Taiwan Straits, though I think we are the kind of upright anchor that keeps the one China balance in place. Clearly, China's military build up is a problem for us. So on the security front we have much to be worried about with China. On the other hand, China is a transitioning economy, internally. I very often think of this little conversation between hard-liners and reformers in the Politburo in which hard-liners say, you know, if we open up our economy and encourage entrepreneurship and close down state enterprises and join the world economy we will go the way of the Soviet Union. And reformers say, if we do not open up our entrepreneurship and grow those jobs that we need and open up to the world economy we will go the way of the Soviet Union and Communist power will be finished. And I think you know, you're both right. One way or the other. If you fail to reform and therefore don't get economic growth, the pressures on that political system are going to become unbearable. If they do reform and do get economic growth, the pressures on that political system are going to become unbearable. And so it's a complicated relationship. We need to trade with them and encourage those hopeful signs.
Rose: This is a question from California. Dan Coll who's in the graduate class at Pepperdine University in Malibu. In the first debate George Bush stated that U.S. troops should be used to, quote, fight wars, not build nations. How would he assist developing states where there are conflicts, for example, Somalia, Bosnia and Kosovo, without using U.S. troops?
Rice: Well, I think, Kosovo is different because this is in NATO and there were certain alliance considerations there. But I think the Governor's been very clear that he believes early diplomacy and early intervention helps. He also believes that having regional powers who will take the burden, on the ground, if you will, if the United States can support them in ways with infrastructure, intelligence support. And again, East Timor is a very good example of this, and the Australians having taken the lead.
Rose: Right. Josette, can you hear me again? Do you hear me again? Do you have another question from Washington?
Shiner: Mm-hm. We do. Hopefully we can go to a couple of short questions here.
Bill Price: This is Bill Price from the Council of the Americas. And Condi, we're very glad to hear of the President's great interest in Latin America and the need for trade. I wonder if you could give us any more specifics on how you would plan to get fast track, and how soon you had planned to get it?
Rice: Governor Bush has said that fast track authority is one of the very earliest things that he would ask for, and he believes ... he thinks like an executive. He says you have political capital; you have to spend it. And what you choose to spend it your political capital on early very often gives you a real advantage and that I think he would be prepared to go to Congress and argue very hard. That is one of the first things that he wants to do because he believes that FTAA is extremely important, that getting Chile finally into the NAFTA realm, and extending some of the benefits that we're experiencing in NAFTA is very important.
Rose: One more question from Washington.
Shiner: I'd like to ask Condi a question and take the prerogative to do that. Condi, you had mentioned that your concern with President Clinton's foreign policy was an absence of focus. And I think I heard you say tonight that your concern that Al Gore might be displaying the opposite, which is almost a hyperfocus, when he's dealing with foreign policy issues. Could you talk about what your concerns would be if Al Gore is elected in the foreign policy area?
Rice: Yes. My concerns about the Vice President's foreign policy are really two. First of all, I have real concerns about where he stands on free trade, and I don't think he's been pressed on where he stands on free trade. He talks about fair trade. He says free trade, but then fair trade always seems to creep in there. He hasn't said where he stands on the Seattle agenda. As a matter of fact he made very clear ... I mean, he made himself scarce during the Seattle events. And I'd like to know where he stands on labor standards and environmental standards and what that means for free trade. The second point is that I really do think that he's laid out an agenda for the American Armed Forces that is remarkably interventionist, that it's going to be the role of the American Armed Forces to, quote, build nations, that he thinks that's what the American Armed Forces did with the Marshall Plan in Germany. Yes, the American Armed Forces were occupying forces for a while, were involved in some civil administration. But I think he'll over-involve us.
Rose: Where do you think he's most likely to do that? In what country?
Rice: I don't know what country, but he is sending a signal that any civil conflict is always going to be on the table for the American Armed Forces, and it's a bad signal because it will cause others to abdicate their responsibility in their regions for doing that work.
Rose: But you've said you would never say never to any possibilities where there were certain kinds of gross violations.
Rice: I said you'd never say never, but I think it's pretty clear that we're saying hardly ever.
Rose: Hardly ever. On that note, please join me in thanking Condoleezza Rice. (Applause)
Rose: Let me just remind you before you leave that this conversation will be seen on my program on PBS, tomorrow night, Friday night, a conversation with Condoleezza Rice, Senior Foreign Policy Advisor to Governor Bush, Senior Fellow and Professor of Political Science at the Hoover Institution. My thanks to the Council and for all of you for joining us for this conversation. Good night. Thank you. (Applause)