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tv   Destined for War  CSPAN  July 16, 2017 4:00pm-5:33pm EDT

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i tried to do this as often as i can. let's booktv want to know what you are reading. send us your summer reading list. .... ....
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>> good afternoon. i am the senior fellow at the hoover institution and a senior fellow and codirector at the center for international security cooperation here at stanford. we are delighted that both institutions have come together to cohost this book event with graham allison and neil ferguson to discuss the book. it's available for purchase outside and he will stay & f you copies so you can't escape the trap of the bookstore outside. now, graham allison, he is director of harvard center and the douglas dylan professor of government and founding dean of harvard school of government. like legions of students, i vividly remember my first time walking into the kennedy school for my first form event back in 1986. it was an intoxicating place where you could feel the brainpower working in the policy being changed in the room. bram allison has been behind this magic for a very long time. setting a standard of policy -- gram since the time he was about ten years old back in 1986. he is the ultimate triple threat serving in a number of
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distinguished positions in academia, government and private sector. he serves as special advisor to the secretary of defense unders president reagan. he has been a trusted advisor to seven secretaries of defense, both democrat and republican. he currently serves on the advisory board of the secretary of state and the director of the central intelligence agency. he has the sole distinction of been awarded the department of defense highest civilian award, the public service medal. as many of you know he has written extensively about nuclear weapons, terrorism and decision-making. his first book, essence of decision, explaining the cuban missile crisis is one of the most influential books in political science. it has become required reading
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for the vast majority of political science students today. now, that is saying something. if you are a political scientist, you know there have been so many articles and books written about the cuban missile crisis. there's even an article about why we should stop writing articles about the cuban missile crisis. his book has stood the test of time. that book has sold more than 450,000 copies which makes you the tom clancy of our field. he has written some other influential books, the grand master insight on china and the world and a book called nuclear
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terrorism, the ultimate preventable catastrophe now in its third printing and selected by one of the most notable books of the year when it came out. this book is no different. just for fun i typed in best-selling political science book on and the three authors at the top were al franken, graham allison. there is only one weakness in his illustrious career. he never saw the light as neil ferguson did to move from harvard to stanford, but i'm here to take to say it's not too late for you. joining him in conversation today is his much smarter colleague who moved to california, neil ferguson who is a colleague of mine and a senior fellow at the hoover institution institution. he is also a senior fellow at
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the center for european studies at harvard and a visiting professor in beijing. he is one of the world's leading economic historians and widely followed political commentator and terrific author. he has sold 450,000 book. he's a prolific author. kissinger, the latest 1923 - 1923 - 1926, a highly awarded book, civilization the west and the rest, the ascent of money, financial history of the world, you can see he picks very niche topics at hand how britain made the world and the rise and fall of the empire. before coming to stanford he was professor of history at harvard for 11 years and before that he taught at nyu, oxford and the london school of economics. he's won a number of awards and perhaps is the only person i
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know who can say he's one international emmy for his pbs series and the award for best documentary from the new york international film festival for his feature length film kissinger. he was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by time magazine and in 2017 he received a first from the hoover institution which was to get every single fellow interested in international security affairs together for the first of what has become a series that has proven to provided illuminating and fascinating conversation. you are about to see why when you hear them talk about graham allison's book. please join me in welcoming them. [applause] >> you can see the introductions are better here than they are at harvard. think you amy.
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so one thing she didn't mention is that we have also been co-authors. we published an article on applied history last year arguing that the president of the united states needed the council of historical advisors, this one specifically. we are not in an adversarial relationship. indeed the book that we are going to talk about is a book that i watched evolve while i was at harvard and have to congratulate you, you got the timing just right. if you aren't worried now about the possibility of conflict between china and the united states, when you leave this room, i guarantee you will be. let me begin with a quotation
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from the book. when a rising power threatens to displace a ruling power, alarm bells should sound, danger had been china and the u.s. are currently on a collision course for war unless both parties take difficult and painful actions to avert it. and, were between the united states and china is not just pop possible but much more widely than recognize. war is more likely than not. i've got to ask you to set out your case, assuming most the people in the room have bought the book but not yet read it. [laughter] persuade us that war is more likely than not between the united states and china. >> thank you very much for participating in this event. i think everyone here for organizing, especially amy.
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it's a great honor and opportunity for me to be here at stanford. i did spend one very happy year here in my advanced studies back in the 70s when i thought i can't possibly come here because i wouldn't get any work done. it's too nice and there's too many other things to do. it's a pleasure to be here. thank you for the introduction. so, not for this group but for general audiences, the concept that there could be a war between great powers is inconceivable. seven decades without war, war between great powers. [inaudible] is not anything to do with the 20th century. there haven't been for a long time and any historical study will recognize how silly that is.
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the proposition about the long piece is a powerful proposition so the notion that peace is either a natural condition of mankind or that for whatever reason we are now better angels and have become so powerful or so wise or in any case, war between great powers is obsolete, i don't believe it. that's the premise. now in the case of u.s. and china, i think every day there is noise and news about what's happening in this
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relationship. either north korea's testing missiles or china becomes the number one trading partner of germany where there's a new collision in the south china sea or whatever. is there some way to look beneath the surface of this daily noise and news to see something of the structure or substructure of what's driving these events, and i came upon the idea that the insight basically helped illuminate what's happening today in china. namely a rising power is threatening to displace another power. that storyline is as old as history itself so the founder of history as we know. [inaudible] he said, it was the rise and the fear that made the war inevitable. >> he identified the dynamic in
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which a rising power feels stronger and deserve a little more weight. the current arrangement set in place before i was bigger and stronger are confining. maybe i can even remember some abuses, and the ruling power thanks they are trying to upset the situation that has provided the environment so this dynamic between the rising power in the ruling power exhausts trust so they are misinterpreted by the other. if i tried to be benign you suspect to have an ulterior motive and vice versa. similarly we create vulnerability to the impact of
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external actions or events in which something happens and one thing triggers a reaction and then a cascade at the end of which is an outcome no one would have imagined. the dynamic here is not that in the rising ruling power of relationship one part party decides this is a good idea. that's not the proposition. the proposition is rather the arrangements are great because they provided a long time of peace and allowed to grow rich and, the u.s. constructed, in the aftermath of world war ii, and economic and
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security order which has provided for longer peace and greater prosperity than china ever saw and 5000 years. they should be extremely grateful and they should actually participate in this order. they say who wrote these roles and where were we when the rules were written and are the rules fair and should they be adjusted maybe i should have more say when we say sit in your place, you should be happy and grateful. what was happening in korea was happening between the u.s. and britain or imagine ireland was becoming threatening to the two parties, the british and americans with the damage said let's not disturb relations between two big states.
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but solve this problem. with the u.s. and china, as we watch what happens in north korea, the chinese, actually, as you know very well. [inaudible] from a chinese perspective in beijing, the problem in korea is only that we are there. there would be no problem in korea if the americans were not in korea. we would solve this problem in a second. from the american perspective, the idea that we the minute, we don't belong there, 40000 americans died there, we help build a society there and it's a very successful democracy on the 13th largest market economy in the world, were not walking away
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from that and saying adios, thank you very much, we are proud of this and we should be proud of this. they said well so the problem is you china, you should solve this problem. where the one that's creating a problem. so i think as you've written neil brilliantly about world war i, if you go back, a good chapter in the book, i do not believe you can study world war i too much. it's totally dumbfounding. i think the answer after the war when people say how do we this happen and he said if we only knew, he has the right answer. how could the assassination in syria ava, the archduke knows the guy in vienna and they told him he should go there.
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the guy that assassinates him is from, if you were writing a movie you wouldn't be able to make this up. that in turn burns down the whole house of europe. it's crazy. did anybody want the war they got? no. they would have liked to have to swish them because of the way they were behaving, but actually as you pointed out would it would allow them to do that without having a great war but one thing led to the other and by the end everybody had lost the thing they care about most. i do think it's so startling and irrelevant as we try to think about china. there's nobody who wants a war with china. i don't know of a single person
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who doesn't think that would be crazy. i think there's no one that thanks the war with the u.s. is a good idea. war would be catastrophic. but, at the end of world war i, what had happened and what each party care most about wilpon they were trying to hold together and empire and the emperor was gone. the kaiser is trying to back his buddy in vienna. he's gone. the french were back in the russians. the society never recovered in britain is turned into a debtor so if you had given these people a chance for a do over, not a single one would've made the choices he did. i think a situation where nobody
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wants war in which everybody knows war would be nuts doesn't mean that war can't happen. >> your analogy here would be the rivalry between germany which many historians have seen essential to the outbreak of that war in this case, britain, in 1914 was the incumbent power as the united states today, they were both heavily independent economically and nevertheless that came with consequences. >> because of this rivalry, and my reading of it and i think it's consistent with your own history of it, they had each become entangled with other parties about who they would otherwise not have been entangled with. he would've understood exactly
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how weak the hungarians were and not about to let them drag him into something. he would've never left the alliance with russia lapse, but you got a kaiser who didn't know what he was doing trying to run the german hand, and they begin to make these mistakes. similarly, the british have been very careful for 400 years not to get to entangled with any other party on the continent. fearful of germany, they have succumbed, i guess maybe we should have more relationships with the russians, even though they were very right about the russians, they thought the russians were threatening their empire in india. in the book, i should explain, he gives you 16 cases of an
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incumbent power feeling threatened by a rising power and this is the political science part, the argument in 12 out of 15 results in conflict. i'd like to talk more about that analogy and then i'd like to get onto the contemporary parallel in which small rogue regime. [inaudible] >> it's worth pointing out, you may not have read the peloponnesian war but china's leaders sure have. raise your hand if you've read all or parts of it. >> that's good. let me make the shout out because i like this very much. you can go right now when you're done and download for free on to your kindle that and only read
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the first 100 pages, book one and it will knock your socks off. i guarantee it, for free. i hope you like the other book two but you have to pay for it. >> it's not downloadable for free yet. i'm sure somebody's working on it. let's briefly talk about this. one of the most remarkable things for me is that this has become something that china's leaders refer to. he himself referred to this in a speech in seattle, remind me if i've got that wrong, and we heard just the other day that the chinese investors in the united states referred to it. it may seem arcane if you're not into agent history but it doesn't seem arcane in beijing, that's for sure.
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just one? the, who is athens in this analogy because i'm not quite sure. i think this is certainly not. [inaudible] it's not like this is exactly like that and next to his our mutual colleague and founder, ernest mae would point out that when you get attracted to an analogy, be careful, always take a page of paper and draw a line down the middle of the page and write similar at the top of one column in different at the top of the other column. if you can't make three bullet points under each, taken aspirin and consultant historian. these are not exactly right. in fact, in the spartan case, as you know very well, sparta had been the ruler of greece for 100
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years. that was the normal circumstance. the persians had come and had a big war and that's what we call the iranians now. they had built a fleet so their navy, their people were professional and worked all time whereas the other guys were soldiers and lo and behold if your professional you can do a little bit better than a pickup game. they produced a impressive navy and created an alliance structure. together athens and sparta then defeated the persians. whereupon there was something that has happened a few other times, but there was this explosion of creative energy, just unbelievable so one of the opinions in this, i was just in
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silicone valley with people in the tech world. what do these guys invent. they invented drama. history. philosophy, socrates, aristotle, democracy, architecture look at the parthenon. can you find a better building in california? excuse me. from sparta, people looking up thing these people are totally out of control. every day they get up and they invent crazy new things. sparta was marshall society. it was essentially a seal team six. when kids are four years old check out the prospect and the other ones you kill him and then you brought him up and the males have to live in barracks until her 25 years old and they can't get married until the 30, they
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were all the time marching around getting ready to fight people and lo and behold they were very good at it. that's what they do. but the idea of drama and history and philosophy and architecture, this all seemed very threatening to the spartans. so they said, look, the way things are are the way things are supposed to be. so after the war with the persians, the athenians wanted to billback their wall to protect them from invasions from people like the spartans. they said no, you cannot have the wall because we need to discipline you and be able to march there. they disobeyed us, the incumbent power and built this wall. why would they build this wall?
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probably because they didn't want to obey us. so it started from there and if you said what's the similarities between the u.s. and china, i think there are obviously extreme differences in both cases, but from an american perspective, the international order that we have helped build and provide and manage over seven decades has actually worked very well if we put it in broad historical terms, i would give it high marks in many areas. from a chinese perspective, that was then and they think china was a great power now and things should be adjusted and particularly in the asian arena, they wonder why is the u.s. navy the arbiter of events in the south china sea.
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they look up every day and they see here's the u.s. navy and it's patrolling their borders and when there's a dispute about the island or someone wants to build an island, we have an opinion and we think our opinion should dominate because were the dominant navy. i say great. we been there since the battle of midway. we provided the environment in which things have been so calm and peaceful that we you been able to develop as you have otherwise what would happen between you and india were you in japan but they look and say maybe, even in the best of cases cases, the academic related people would say i agree with you, you have a point, but that was then and this is now so it's
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time for you to leave. >> when you read it you can't help but feeling they were a lot like americans. the nature of the case first compelled us to. [inaudible] wouldn't really want this empire and its law based. i don't think they have a distinctly american policy to them so in that case the analogy is not quite perfect but will come back to what i think is the best analogy which is the germany written pre-1914 analogy. before we do that, can we talk about your cases when things turned out well. if there's one thing this book can tell us, it's how to avoid a version of 1914 between the united states and china. >> >> and then finally with the open case he merging in the cold war period as the ally in europe. in each of these cases there is a lot to learn most of the u.s. is relative to britain and the cold war. but the british had to problems like germany was more proximate
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and direct an old lady groups out of the hemisphere. most americans will find this very uncomfortable because teddy roosevelt is one of my heroes wiedmaier him but i tell the story of america as we are emerging of what would be the american century and he was extremely confident so with 1897a37 year-old named roosevelt arrived in washington at the time there is only the secretary of the navy assistant secretary and that was it.
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for 15 years he was reeling about the consolidation in our hemisphere particularly by cuba the also the british and the navy and the german navy so what happened in the decade after he arrived in washington? there is a chapter about it but there was is an explosion we took that as nuclear war from spain in which
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a puerto rico and we took on. that is how they became our territories. one of the canals with the -- with the panama canal so we go from the lead to the pacific. we created a new country called the panama they gave is the contract for the canal. we staged a coup. also venezuela where their british and the germans would settle the manner and they didn't even have any discretion. we did in the war with each of them and then they decided to leave then also with alaska is a delicious tale it went to bearer's boiling -- exploring and the maid river through the national forest that is the largest national forest is part
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of the territory that we stole. he said this is like 100 years and a guy who took teddy roosevelt camping in yosemite said this should be a national park. this is 100 yosemite it is america. he said this is canada. do we began. so we threatened war with canada and we took it. so low that was with roosevelt and don't remember the llord doctrines but this is our hemisphere. but if another nation misbehaves as we find that we will send the marines to change the government and their after every year to change the government somewhere
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so should any successor be inspired by roosevelt for sure we will fighters on a very desperate map. >> but what was more outrageous so tight -- china is circumspect as we appear in the u.s. media but nothing with that aggressive assertion of what the united states participated in. >> this from the great british tradition as the prime minister to be in it in this situation
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not showing any repect and he says, you know, if we had to intervene in the civil war, we could of had two americas and this all wouldn't be happening tous. bet he said if you don't take opportunity when it arises you don't get a second chance. >> but the lesson from that seems to be interesting. the united kingdom decide not to
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intervene in the civil war because on balance, the country was against the confederacy. there was that degree of similarity but by the 1900s nobody minded the prospect of u.s.' dominance and a junior partner relationship emerging. but that analogy doesn't apply in the case of the ship between the united states and china. if china started to behave ala teddy roosevelt nobody would say that is china being china and they will be fine. relax, let's worry about russia. it is not going to be like that.
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>> 00:36:40 unidentified speaker actually united states could have taken canada and was interested but he looked at that more than once her go so did the british. but they noticed what was vital and what we could adjust to they tolerated behavior that otherwise was crude and of reasonable and not fair but nevertheless they help the americans to see that american and british interest were quite a wind with that cultural similarity so therefore the u.s. is the natural supply allied for britain. even at the beginning of the war so then with the u.s. entered the war and then to be aligned with britain and then became even thicker with that naval conference americans agreed to hire of feel better with the brits. so where those interests are vital and in other areas if i am
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not powerful enough and it can adjust lit is to different cultures but that knowledge was elaborate a little bit also in terms of vital interest and not having a general nuclear war. and of mutual assured destruction and to do the best
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if you said, what in terms of vit vital interest, what interest do the u.s. and china share. in the book i say three. one; not having a general nuclear war. we have a relationship with them like we have with the soviet union of mutual assured destruction. that means if i do my best to destroy you, after that you can still kill me. so we are alike as i say in the book simese twins. image imagine you wake up and we have our arms and legs but our backbone has been fused. however evil, demonic, however much you want to strangle me you will think this guy deserves to be strangled but if i strangle him i will commit suicide. so they have to find a way to
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live with it it. so that provides as it did and was an important part of the cold war. secondly, the economies of deeply interlaced. not just as they were with britain and france but even in supply chains. if you had a war, they would not have goods and factories wouldn't be making stuff for who and we would not be able to get loans. that doesn't look like a good idea. and third, everybody who studied the proposition agrees in the current power of use of energy we may succeed in making a globe a hundred years from now that your great great grandchildren can't live in. that doesn't make any sense. so there is no way the u.s. could do anything to solve that
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problem if china is not cl collaborative. so you have three big areas where you can imagine finding alignment and other areas where you have to adopt some. >> i want to open it up to the audience in five minutes. i will ask you one more question and give the crowd a chance to ask you questions. you are almost saying they are not destined for war because of the short destruction, economic independence and then these environmental concerns. let's now look closely at a plausible scenario where the china and u.s. reach conflict and i talked about this over lunch yesterday and i think we both agreed that what is
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unfolding in north korea has the potential to be a cause of conflict. but give us that scenario maybe just looking ahead to a matter of months at nobody in the summer of 1914 expected that britain and germany by august would be at war over such arcane questions of self determination. tell me how, despite their common interests, the united states and china could end up in conflict over north korea. >> i have a chapter in the book called from here to war and i have thoughts on getting there and let's stick with the most urgent and one we were chatting about. think of the cuban missile crisis in slow motion. when the cuban missile crisis over the 13 days, the u.s. and soviet union came to a point where we almost attacked the
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missiles in cuba and if we had done we would of had a war with russia and maybe a nuclear war. in brief, the soviet union was discovered placing nuclear tip missiles in cuba in october 1962. president john f. kennedy said this is not going to happen and actually was prepared to attack the missiles in cuba to prevent them becoming -- being completed in such a way they would attack the american homeowner and engage in a confrontation where he thought had a one in three chance of nuclear war to prevent this happening and we survived. it is a long story but in any case this happened over 13 days. in the current situation i would say not 13 days but the next 13 months or maybe 26 months but not immediately.
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eter track one the train is coming down. this is kim jong-un and he is going to acquire the ability to strike san francisco with a nuclear war head. that is track one. and track two is president trump who says my train will crash into yours before you reach that point if you continue going down your track. you have these two trains moving toward a point of collision. so you think wait a minute. let me do this again. most people who haven't been following north korea will not quite remember. most of you know but let me go back through it. i was working for secretary perry in 1994 when we went through this exercise the first time. after the first, i was talking to bill yesterday about this, ashton carter working at the time and me and bill would have
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attacked north korea to prevent north korea in reprocessing platonium that would allow it after a few more states to bewhich a nuclear war state. how can you live in a world where a nutty state like north korea has nuclear weapons? we should not live in such with world and if we can prevent it we should. there was great risk in attacking north korea even at that time. for sure our south korean ally would have a heart attack and maybe this would end up causing a lot of damage in south korea. but any case i was in favor of it then and even as i look back on it i believe the secretary of defense's few was right. i wish we had attacked them then because we would not be where we
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were now if that provoked the second korean war i would say maybe this wasn't a good idea. but sometimes you have to make very hard choices. that was a hard choice and i think i would stick with the few i had at the time and held by the defense government not by some of the rest of the government. in any case, this thing now has an arsenal of 20-25 nuclear weapons. that is not a hypothetical but a fact. the same north korea has tested and deployed short-range missles that cia says can deliver nuclear warheads to south korea. that is already now. this same little country has developed medium range missiles and tested and deployed them that could deliver nuclear warheads against japan. that is where we are now. and it is this train that
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already went through four stations and it is coming to the last station which is to believe able to deliver a warhead against america. that is on the one hand. on the other hand, now we have a rival of donald trump. so, donald trump heard about this for the first time in his life he became president. that is what he said. he said he met with president obama and president obama said let me tell you there is a real crisis brewing in north korea. north korea is going to acquire the ability to attack the american loam homeland. when you say there is a little country are nuclear weapons that might be able to attack san francisco they would not believe
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you. donald trump let the meeting and tweeted this is not going to happen. so at the mara largo summit with the china president trump said you can solve this problem but if you don't i can solve this problem. he said if you do you will not like it. he served them chocolate cake, excused themselves and announced we launched 50 cruise missiles against syria. how can we solve this problem? we can solve this problem.
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can we launch 50 cruise missiles against north korea to the launching pad? absolutely. they will have no problem doing this and they can do a lot worse than that. but the question is if we were to do that that is step one. now about step two? currently the view is well every step two is that the north koreans only use their art and they attack soul. they may kill 48 million people in a couple hours. a lot of people. if they do that, maybe people say time out, we should stop, you know, we are on a dangerous road or maybe the americans and the south koreans say wait a minute this crazy guy has already killed a million people and has capacity to kill way more than that we better destroy all the rockets and all the
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missiles that he has before he attacks us, south korea, our base, japan. maybe if we do will be succeed in getting every target? every target we can identify we will destroy. are we able to identify all of the targets? probably not. again, it will be classified at this point but i would say probably not. well, maybe he responds by dropping a nuclear weapon on south korea or japan and then? colin powell told his count counterpart if a nuclear weapon explodes in an ally of ours we will turn them into an entire
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hole. but that is like 25 million people who live there. most poor slavs in a madhouse. they are not part of this story so you going to destroy that many targets and people in what way? and then are the chinese going to sit by and watch the game? at the end of the story you have the a unified career ad a government that is a military ally of the u.s. and as we heard, they said, wait a minute, that is unacceptable from our perspective. we already fought a war with you over this the last time. anybody that can't believe the americans and chinese can kill each other go back and read about world war 1 or the korean war. in 1950, north korea attacked south korea. the u.s. came to the rescue last
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minute and pushed the north koreans up approaching the border with china. out of nowhere, mccarthy was stunned, 300,000 chinese and entered the war and bet us down the peninsula to where the war began. china demonstrated it is prepared to go to war and fight to prevent having a hostile american-related government on its border. would they do again? particularly given the new conditions and fact it could escalate to hell? i don't know. ask us are you prepared to get involved in the war that might escalate to hell because we both go to hell together and i will say stay tuned. >> you have now created a distinctly chilling silence in the room. i want to just add a little ben.
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1950, commencement at harvard, hen henry kissenger is getting his degree and in the case of foreign policy remarks says a war is not about to break out and three days later the korean war begins. be aware these things can happen very much faster than you expect. you arrived probably not thinking too much about this scenario and you will leave here thinking a lot more because as graham said there is a precedent, there is a kaz spelly and i can assure you on the basis of the conversations i have had this is a very plausible scenario in the eyes of both u.s. and chinese decision makers. the good news is, and i should say this because this is a response not only by the sense of international security and corporation but by the hoover
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institution to which i belong. the secretary of defense is on leave from being a hoover fellow and he has read the book and i suspect hr mcmaster, the national security advisor has also done his reading on this. so it is nat entirely in the hands of president trump who i am pretty sure who has not read the posts. with that, i will open it up. fou have a question raise your land. i will pick you a lot. a microphone is going to come to you and you will say who you are. we don't need the whole life story. ask a question. if you start making a speech, i will just cut you off. i am from glasgow. click. there is a gentlemen in the blue shirt. tell us who you are and ask your questions. >> my name is george coon and i am convinced i will have to read
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the book. i have a metaphor to present and see what you think. it is the assumption of two hands clapping but it seems to be in the u.s.-china case it could only be a one hand clapping because the culture so different as you mentioned. i see the u.s. making all the aggressive moves and i don't see china countering. if it is a one hand clapping event are we going to have this trap? >> each question could be along this so i will apologize if i be telegraphic. i think the south china sea is
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as much as teddy roosevelt thought about the caribbean. we can agree, whether i do, if this makes any sense for a big and strong power to say i am the overseer of it because i am bigger and stronger. that is not the way things have been. but the chinese are not happy to have the number of islands that used to be in the south china sea. they think this would be a few extra ones and book them and they are not happy to have the islands divided. they think the vietnamese and filipinos can claim island and they think all these islands look like my islands in the same way teddy roosevelt said i think this looks like my river. well, i don't agree with the proposition that there is nobody clapping on the other side. >> in fairness, i think on the north korean issue at this point you are right. and the chinese at this point
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seem keen to go along with the idea that the united states and china can work together to deal with the north korean problem. i say this with some authority having heard a very interesting conversation at a high level on this subjekct over the weekend. i think at this point, the mara-largo strategy saying this is your problem, you better deal with it, it could be going welch i think the view of all things that happened since being president this is being deemed the most successful. the problem is what happens if china doesn't deliver in the eyes of the administration? at that point, it is going to be a red line situation because at that point he is going to have to either back down and accept
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the nuclear program as ongoing or take military action and that is when it gets dangerous and there is no xoeg how the chinese will respond. >> the new driver of liberalism is this. what we have seen after the debacle at the nato summit and the response of angela merkal and other people you can sense europe saying well, we better
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start working with the chinese and the germans are having this big powwow at the same time china whether it works or not and their are indications maybe it is not working so well but they are making a major push toward europe and transit and so forth and certainly i know in the case of eastern europe they had two separate summits with the country in the european union but are formally communist. ....
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>> >> buckwheat but the other third parties is interesting to watch in those cases. the other parties look to see who is rising and who is falling. and then looking after themselves. already across asia countries have noticed the tide is the greatest trading partner. in then that will squeeze them when it is in their interest. so they have adapted and digestive and you can see that and attractive to look at these institutions to
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counterbalance to china you can see them weakening but in the european case first to look at what is happening to the balance of power today china is the largest economy in the world if you just had to pick one which is purchasing power. many people will disagree i have assured but cia and the imf both believe purchasing parity is a way to compare the relative state of the economies of by that measure there already are the biggest trading partner with germany. so who is the place that provides the german in the
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chinese? the four of them have four times the capital of the world bank. if you're looking for lower you go to china. the use of loans for purposes of course, and to provide contracts so this is exacerbated i have been on the week-long rollout for this book so somebody said have you found any case in which the ruling power vacates the freedom in the arena? you have the alliance with a bunch of strong parties said weaken the alliance. but i think this case could be original in that regard
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with the idea that the leader of china this is the largest emitter of greenhouse gases is a very important as they are investing in the green industries but the idea that it is breathtaking as the idea so how can you manage that? have the contender leaves the field i guess. >> so talking about the other players it is very tempting going into the to
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play your game framework. but rarely is the alliance's and this shows what really matters but how others will respond to that. specifically on the issue. but the koreans are far from comfortable. >> i would predict the america and south korean relationship will be very stressed but the reality of the situation but lindsey graham went on television to make a speech about it and strategically but the
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proposition from trump is undoing what north korea has already done. we are prepared. >> but i think the president is playing along. >> how do i feel about this? actually in the japanese relationship to look that carefully laid the but. >>.
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>> putting them into this picture?. >> but japan is the third largest economy in the world so you'd have a war just between the two parties the east china sea to develop those forces i would bet on japan ended is a strong treaty. and one other reasons why it is different that they are
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strong and powerful actors in the region and. and with that athenian spartan cases is that the relationships will evolving and adapt and those entanglements end up becoming the reason why and india is a wild card. so with my book and the future of india but it is a great book because 90 percent will be this to the questions. >> so this is my colleague i call him swami blackwell.
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so many people say do not use india and china in the same sentence. but then he said india is not a real country 24 principalities united by the british rail line. >> i'll take the other side of that bed but what was the tortoise and the hair but india is fascinating and number of respects of how that will play with u.s.
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china rivalry. this is the idiot back in the time of the bush administration and of quasi containment strategy. >> and a room to say the word containment. but every two years as a great financial crisis the increment of growth has been equal to the total gdp just to put into perspective. >> let's take some more questions and then trying to get gender balance in this discussion.
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>> i am a historian and doctoral student but i'm interested to know your thoughts on contextualizing a longer history of china with that original primary power from the mid-19th century. >> long before donald trump became famous, xi jinping became president of china. the great rejuvenation of the chinese people. and with that chinese the narrative. and china was grey forever.
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and then to see them but but then there was 200 years of anomalies of the westerners and they invaded them. and dominated them. but now that is over. back to our normal place back to the narrative at the top of the universe proposal that is a horrible dominance into everybody else's lower on the pyramid the wine is
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known as known by place. so that they looked and see we are not rising we're just restoring our souls to where we were before and would have been otherwise. to have a big gdp with a lot of people. and with that industrial revolution and everybody was miserable. okay you have a bigger gdp but so what? that they did have industrial revolution, a technology so
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basically the march of civilization so then to be at the top of the pyramid. >> but the way that it is powerful the way that strategic question is framed if that is true that is reinforced by the historians that we are reverting. so that narrative is completely different in which there is that providential exception. >> this is one of the
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arguments that he makes with that ideological component and that is still very much intact. >> let's get him a microphone. >> and with that special policy. and with those sections of donald trump and is that more or less sanguine?. >> as i mentioned before the idea and try to maintain some level of order to which
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that rising power would adapt and adjust and on that underlying correlation supply and the ruling power my relationships are with other strong powers and for what we're trying to accomplish together. so it is not surprising that xi jinping at davos relished the spotlight as people say great leader you are leading us with mutual liberalization and that is fantastic. and to expected to be doing the very same thing.
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>> and we're trying hour best to carry on this conversation. >> there is a gentleman in the red shirt. >> i may freshmen here. >> over the past 70 years we have seen what international order looks like selected chinese order look-alike?. >> those are words worth contemplating. i and a red blooded redneck american and i know somewhere in the bible or with some authoritative document tuesday that means no. one. [laughter]
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and i have no doubts who the good guys are. >> it is amazing that you laughed so long. [laughter] >> i put my shirt up from time to time. and all i the contrary we are five -- far too preoccupied to think of such questions and of what you are alluded to a whole series of chinese projects going for word to expand china's influence so the example of this foreign countries and mentioning
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financial innovation so with china as friday's it continues to be understated. because they're always insisting that they are entitled to be a world power. but then contributing to what was called the rise of the angry german. they learn from history. so we began to suspect we were living in the united states. but there was an attempt for that historical knowledge of senior officials of the u.s. government.
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but when you go to beijing you realize they systematically have reading assignments and your book is the latest. so can you confirm or deny it is being read by the chinese government?. >> i was having dinner in new york and the high-level person had just come back from the position that xi jinping held in china to say what do you think of this? and he said it is and published until next week in the u.s. and he said i got
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my copy last weekend it is fantastic. so it is already circulating . not the copyright. [laughter] >> not necessarily maybe he is reading the galleys. >> but this is the illustrious list but i first heard of him reading this after he was asked to read to upfield and then to find out it was that the short history of europe. it is a matter what mark zuckerberg is reading. and in that middle bloc?.
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>> i. a. m. interested in the timeframe because there is the study commissioned by the u.s. army of the rand corporation and said the title is thinking through the unthinkable and it seems that there is still such a discrepancy between in that capacity of europe and china so that earlier war within the 10 years would be an advantage to america that could maybe wage a war and strike china so hard and set them back another 50 years or so.
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so can you comment on this question or time frame? so with that military capacity between china and america?. >> a very good question. eric is a steady trying to do that military balance that u.s. defense department spends more than the next five competitors combined so clearly strongly superior in the domain but if you look at a neighboring war this becomes a very different picture. since the chinese can play from the land the others have to play from the sea
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but if i have to operate in the south china sea in volume of to do is build million-dollar missiles than that is not a good game. they are not required to place symmetrically. >> but with respect to the thesis not because i have bigger and stronger is a good time to go to war. the somebody decide let's go to war? so the rising power things now i am big and strong. there is a couple of cases like that but most of those
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that we are in this structural dynamics so i wonder if some other place in this interaction, i believe that if xi jinping could say do this or do that , he would do it but that relationship with beijing is very stressed. never have the chinese people have asked kim jong noone to visit so how do you talk to this guy? they cannot even go see him. they say we talk through the ambassador nbc has some
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ability to communicate but it is a very stressed relation so this is as we were describing before. but the military balance is relevant but the vulnerability is with the entanglements of the third parties. >> phrase that i heard recently from the original korean war that they were dragged into war but then to think it has the official status so when you tell that story coming you realize
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you're entering the fraught terrain. because the people's republic was made full of these people by stolid. -- stolen. we have time for one more question. >> so when donald trump said this will not happen? that would trump is remarkably inconsistent it was obsolete and now not and then to talk
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to him? so should we be as worried about the red lines or to be stunningly inconsistent?. >> that is not particularly reassuring. i appreciate your optimism. but certainly give them the nature of the campaign that flip-flop is preferable. is clearly one that knows set strategy that there is no continuity in this.
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to be thrilled that they got through it but then said we're just one tweeter way from the next election. so that is likely to be continued they say has uncertainty. but trying to decipher and i would wish there is a very strong national security team in to be a very strong secretary of state and then to do dig through those consequences but at the same time those people in palo alto what do they feel about
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watching a nuclear weapon? that they don't say what? who? out? so what risk are you prepared to take? away to take any risks. so it is quite possible it is visceral. and now a little country to do this and i will solve this problem so i do not discount of proposition if it continues down the track not just with incredible threat and then we have to
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see where that leads and as we have studied the cuban missile crisis we think would you want the one at a three chance with the soviet union? excuse me this is the soviet union that could kill you. so that is a big deal. >> what the hell are we doing here get into this situation? so i will be of we end on a positive note that we could find ourselves
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in a war with china. and if we became inventive. >> so with that i will give a be the last word. [applause] i speak for everybody never has a ben so enjoyable but destined for war -- "destined for war" is destined for purchase. [applause] [inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] let's get going please remember silage your phones so we are not interrupted. tonight teach military history and i.m. happy to introduce a couple of friends


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