tv 1976 Presidential Candidates Second Debate CSPAN November 3, 2016 10:00pm-11:31pm EDT
this debate took place in san francisco on october 6, 1976 and focused on foreign policy and defense issues. topics included u.s. soviet relations. the credibility of the u.s. -- in the wake of vietnam and water gate and the size of the u.s. military budget. jimmy carter went on to win the general election with 58%. the league of women voters sponsored this 90 minute debate. >> until gerald r. ford of michigan republican candidate for president and jimmy carter of georgia, jimmy carter candidate for president. thank you, president ford and thank you governor carter for being with us tonight. an estimated 100 million
americans are watching on television as well. san francisco was the site of the signing of the united nations charter, 31 years ago, thus it is an appropriate place to hold this debate. the subject of which is foreign and defense issues. the questioners tonight are max frankle, associate editor of the "new york times." henry l. true et, diplomatic correspondent and richard diplomatic correspondent of nbc news. the ground rules tonight are basically the same as they were for the first debate two weeks ago. the questions will be alternated between candidates. by the toss of a coin, governor carter will take the first question. each question sequence will be as follows, the question will be asked and the candidate will have up to three minutes to answer, his opponent will have up to two minutes to respond. and prior to the response, the
questioner may ask a follow-up question to clarify the candidates' answer when necessary with up to two minutes to reply. each candidate will have three minutes for closing statement at the end. president ford and governor carter do not have notes or prepared remarks with them this evening, they can take notes during the debate and refer to them. mr. frankle you have the first question for governor carter. >> governor, since the democrats foreign policy including many of the men who are advising you, country has been relieved of the vietnam agony and the military draft. we started arm's control negotiations with the russians. we've opened relations with china. we've arranged the disengagement in the middle east, we've regained influence without deserting israel, now we've begun a process of peaceful change in africa. you've objected in this campaign to the style with which much of
this was done and you've mentioned some other things that you think ought to have been done. but do you really have a quarrel with this republican record, would you not have done any of those things? >> well, i think this republican administration has been almost all style and spectacular and not substance. we've got a chance to actually talk about, first of all, leadership, the character of our country and a vision of the future. and every one of these instances, the ford administration has failed and i hope tonight, will have a chance to discuss a reason for those failures. our country is not strong any more. we're not respected any more. we can only be strong if we're strong at home. and when i become president, we'll not only be strong in those areas, but also in defense, a defense capability second to none. we've lost in our foreign policy the character of the american
people. we've ignored or excluded the american people and the congress for participation in the shaping of foreign policy has been one of secrecy and exclusion. in addition to that, we've had a chance to become now contrary to our long-standing believes and principals, the arm's merchant of a whole world. we're trying to bind success from enemies from the same time we've excluded from the process, the normal friendship of our allies. in addition to that, we've become fearful to compete with the soviet union on equal basis. we talk about the time. the soviet union knows what they want and they've been getting it. we have not known what we've wanted and we've been talking about in every instance. the only part i want to make is about the defense. we've got to be a nation blessed with a defense capability that's efficient, tough, capable, well
organized, narrowly focused, fighting capability. the ability to fight, if necessary, is the best way to avoid the chance for or the requirement to fight. and the last point i want to make is this, mr. ford, mr. k s kissinger have continued on. even the republican platform has criticized the lack of leadership and mr. ford and they've criticized the policy of this administration. this is one instance where i agree with, with the republican platform. i might say this in closing, and that is is, as far as foreign policy goes, mr. kissinger has been the president of this country. mr. ford has shown an absence of leadership and absence of grasp of what this country is and what it ought to be. that's got to be changed and that's one of the major issues in this campaign of 1976.
>> president ford, would you like to respond. >> governor carter, again, is talking in broad generalities. let me take just one question that he raises. the military strength and capability of the united states. governor carter in november of 1975 indicated that he wanted to cut the defense budget by $15 billion, a few months later, he said he wanted to cut the defense budget by 8 or $9 billion. more recently he talked about cutting the defense budget by 5 to $7 billion. there's no way you can be strong militarily and have those kind of reductions in our military appropriation. now, let me just tell you a little story. about late october of 1975, i ask the then secretary of defense, mr. slesinger, to tell
me what had to be done if we were going to reduce the defense budget by three to five billion dollars. we will have to reduce the construction program. we will have to reduce the research and development for the army, the navy, the air force and marines by 8%. we would have to close 20 military faces in the united states immediately. that's the kind of a defense program that mr. carter wants. let me tell you this straight from the shoulder, you don't negotiate with mr. -- from weakness and the kind of a defense program that mr. carter
wants will mean a weaker defense and a poorer negotiating position. >> mr. truitt a question for president ford. >> my question is really the other side of the coin for mr. frankle. for generations united states has had a foreign policy based on containment of con ewism. yet we've lost a shoving match in angola. communist threat tennessee to come to power and relations have cooled with the soviet union in the last few months. let me ask you first, what do you do about such cases as italy. secondly, does this general drift mean that we're moving back towards something old cold relationship between the soviet union. >> i don't believe we should move to cold war relationship. i think it's in the best interest of the united states and the world as a whole, that the united states negotiate rather than go back to the cold war relationship with the soviet
union. i don't look at the picture as briefly as you have indicated in your question, mr. truitt. i believe that the united states has had many successes in recent years and recent months as far as the come muist movement has concerned. it didn't. we have a democracy in portugal today. a few months ago, or i should say, maybe two years ago, the soviet union looked like they had continued strength in the middle east. today, according to prime minister soviet union is weaker in the middle east than they have been in many many years, the facts are, there -- the soviet union relationship with egypt is at a low level.
the soviet union relationship with syria is at a very low point. the united states today according to prime minister rescreen of israel is at a peak. >> we wanted to have the full protection of minority. we wanted to preserve human dignity in southern africa. we have taken the initiative and in southern africa today, the united states is trusted by the black front line nation and black africa, the united states is trusted by the other elements in southern africa.
united states foreign policy under this administration has been one of progress and success. and i believe that instead of talking about soviet progress, we can talk about american successes. may i make an observation part of the question you asked mr. truitt. i don't believe that it's in the best interest of the united states in the nato nations to have a communist government in na nato. i think that will destroy the integrity and the strength of nato and i'm totally opposed to it. >> unfortunately he just made a statement that's not true. i have never advocated a communist government for italy, that will be a ridiculous thing.
i think that this is an instance for deliberate distortion and this is occurred also in the question about defense. as a matter of fact, i've never advocated any cut of $15 billion, as a matter of fact, mr. ford has made a political football out of defense budget. about a year ago, he cut the pentagon budget $6.8 billion. after he fired james, the political heat go so great he added value about $3 billion. when ronald reagan won the texas primary election, mr. ford added back another $1.5 million. immediately before the kansas city convention, he added back another 1.8le billion dollars in the defense budget and his own, office of management budget testify that he had a $3 billion cut insurance added to the defense budget under the pressure from the pentagon. obviously, this is another indication of trying to use the
defense budget for political purposes, which he's trying to do tonight. we went into south africa late after a great britain, black nations have been trying to solve this problem for many many years. we didn't go in until right before the election, similar to what was taking place in 1972 and mr. kiss sin jer announced pieces at hand just before the election at that time. we have weakened opposition in nato. the other countries supported the democratic forces in portugal long before we did. we stuck before the dictator ship much longer than other democracies did in this world. >> you had a question for governor carter. >> much of what the united states does abroad is done in the name of the national interest. what is your concept of the national interest, what should the roll of the united states in the world be. and in that connection, considering your limiting experience in foreign affairs
and the fact that do take some pride in doing washington outsider, don't you think it would be appropriate for you to tell the american voters before the election, people that you would like to have in key positions such as secretary of state, secretary of defense, national security of affairs adviser at the white house. >> i'm not going to name my cabinet who i got elected. i've got a little ways to go before i started doing that. i've an adequate background, i believe. first military graduate since eisenhower. i've served as governor of georgia and traveled extensively in south america, europe, middle east and in japan. i've traveled the last 21 months among the people of this country. i've talked to them and i've listened. and i've seen it firsthand in a very vivid way, the deep hurt that's come to this country and the aftermath of vietnam and cam bode owe and chilly and pakistan
and angola and water gate, and cia revelations. what we are so proud of, strength of our country, it's integrity. the representation in foreign affairs of what our people are, what our constitution stands for has been gone. and in the secrecy that has surrounded our foreign policy in the last few years, the american people has been excluded. i believe i know what this country ought to be. i have been one who has loved my nation as many americans do and i believe that there's no limit placed on what we can be in the future if we could harness a tremendous resources, militarily, economically, and stature of our people meaning of the constitution in the future. every time we've made a serious mistake in foreign affairs, it's been because the american people have been exclude frd the process. if we can just tap the intelligence and ability, the
sound common sense and a good judgment of the american people, we can, once again, have a foreign policy to make us proud instead of ashamed. i'm not going to exclude the american people from that process in the future as they have done. this is what it takes to have a sound foreign policy, strong at home, strong defense, permanent commitments, not destroy the principals of country and the shaping of foreign policy. every time mr. ford speaks from a position of secrecy in negotiations and secret treaties have been pursued and achieved and supporting dictator ship and ignoring human rights, we are weak and the rest of the world knows it. so these are the ways that we can restore the strength of our country and they don't require a long experience in foreign policy, nobody has that except a president who served a long time and secretary of state. my background, my experience, my knowledge as the people of the
country. my commitment to the principals that don't change, those are the best to correct the whole of the mistakes of this administration and restore our own country to position of leadership in the world. >> how, specifically, governor, are you going to bring the american people into the decision-making process in foreign policy, what does that mean. >> first of all, i would -- i would conducting the decision-making process in secret, as has been characteristic of mr. kissinger and mr. ford. in any instance we've made agreements in vietnam that have been revealed later on to embarrassment, recently smith, the president of -- announced that he had unequivocal commitments that he could not reveal, the american people don't know what those commitments are. we've seen in the past a destruction of elected governments like in chilly and the strong support of military dictator ship there. these kind of things have hurt us very much.
i would restore the concept, which was a integral part of the administration. and i will also restore the involvement of the congress when harry true man was president. he was not afraid to have a strong secretary of defense. he also made sure that there was a bipartisan support, the members of congress, author, walter jorng, part of the process and before our nation made a secret agreement or before we made a bluffing statement, we were sure that we had the backing, not only the president and secretary of state, but also the congress and the people, this is a responsibility of the president and i think it's very damaging to our country for mr. ford to have turned over this responsibility to the secretary of state. >> president ford, do you have a response. >> governor carter contradicts himself. he complains about secrecy, and yet he is quoted as saying that in the attempt to find a solution in the middle east that
he would hold unpublicized meetings with the soviet union, i presume for the purpose of and imposing a settlement on israel and the arab nation. but let me talk just a minute about what we've done to avoid secrecy and the ford administration. after the united states took the initiative and -- in working with israel and with egypt and achieving the sinai agreement, and i'm proud to say that not a single egyptian or israeli soldier has lost his life since the signing of the sinai agreement. but at the time that i submitted the sinai agreement to the congress of the united states, i submitted every single document that was applicable to the sinai agreement. it was the most complete documentation by any president of any agreement signed by a
president on behalf of the united states. now, as far as meeting with the congress is concerned, during the 24 months that i've been the president of the united states, i have averaged better than one meeting a month with responsible groups or committees of the congress, both house and senate. the secretary of state has appeared in the several years that he's been the secretary before 80 different committee hearings in the house and in the senate. the secretary of state has made better than 50 speeches all over the united states explaining american foreign policy. i have made, myself, at least 10 speeches in various parts of the country where i have discussed with the american people defense and foreign policy. >> mr. frankle, a question for president ford. >> i would like to explore a
little more deeply our relationship with the russians. they use to brag back in the day because of their greater patience and because of our greed for business deals, that they would sooner or later get the better of us. is it possible that despite some setbacks in the middle east, they've proved their point. our allies in france and italy are now flirting with communism. we've recognized a permanent communist regime in east germany. we've virtually signed an agreement that the russians have dominance in eastern europe. we bailed out soviet agriculture with our huge grain sales. we've given them access to best technology and the senate had not interfered with the jackson amendment, maybe you would have given them larger loans, is that what you call a two-way streak of traffic in europe. >> i believe that we have negotiated with the soviet union since i've been president from a position of strength.
and let me site several examples. shortly after i became president in december of 1974, i met with secretary, and we agreed to a mutual cap on the ballistic missile launchers at a ceiling of 2,400 which means that the soviet union, if that becomes a permanent agreement, will have to make a reduction in their launchers that they now have or plan to have. i negotiated a limitation on the merging of their ballistic missiles at a figure of 1320, which is the first time that any president has achieved a cap, either on launchers or on merge, it seems to me that we can go from there to the green sales.
the green sales have been a benefit to american agriculture. we have achieved a 5.75 year sale of a minimum of 6 million metric tons, which means that they're bound to buy 2 million to take the grain and corn and wheat that the american formers -- farmers have produced in order to have full production and these grain sales to the soviet union have helped us tremendously in meeting the cost of the additional oil and the oil that we have brought from overseas. i'm glad you raised it mr. franklin. in the case, 35 nations signed in agreement, including the
secretary of state for the vatican, i can't, under any circumstances, believe that the -- is holding us the pope, would agree by signing that agreement that the 35 nations have turned over to the warsaw packed nations, the domination of eastern europe, it just isn't true and if mr. carter alleges that is holding us by signing that has done it, he's totally inaccurate. now, what has been accomplished by the sinking agreement. number one, we have an agreement where they notify us and we notify them of any military maneuvers that are to be undertaken. they have done it in both cases where they've done so. there is no soviet domination of eastern europe and there never will be under ford administration.
>> can i -- did i understand you to say, sir, that the russians are not using eastern europe as their own spirit of influence and occupying more most of the countries there and making sure with their troops that it's a communist zone, on where as our side of the line, the italians or the french are still flirting. >> i don't believe mr. frankle, that the they consider themselves dominated by the soviet union. i don't believe that the romainians consider themselves dominated by the soviet union. i don't believe that the polos consider themselves dominated by the soviet union. each of those countries is independent or aton mouse. it has its own territorial integrity and the united states does not concede that those countries are under the domination of the soviet union. as a matter of fact, i visited poland, and romania to make
certain that the people of those countries understood that the president of the united states and the people of the united states are dedicated to their independence, their atonmy and their freedom. >> in the case of the agreement, it might have been an agreement. but we have failed to enforce the bachelor's degree, which ensures a right of people to migrate, the families to be free, speak out, soviet union is still freeing europe, radio free europe is being jammed. we've also seen a very serious
problem -- and/or ganic linkage between the eastern european countries and the soviet union and i would like to see hungaryian americans in the country. we also have seen. he hasn't had a cross examination type press conference in over 30 days. one press conference he had was without sound. the soviet union put pressure on mr. ford and he refused to see, a symbol of human freedom recognized around the world. . he's permitted a boycott by the arab countries of american businesses who trade with
israel, who have american jews. his own secretary of commerce had to be subpoenaed by the congress to reveal the name boycott. they didn't volunteer the information. he had to be subpoenaed. and the last thing i would like to see is this -- secretary and three embargoes one against the wild life in japan. >> a question for governor carter. >> i would like to pick up on that point only and on your greater measure of american idlism. foreign affairs come home to the american p public pretty much grain sales, that sort of thing. would you be willing to risick on embargo to hold it for the
same purpose. i think, as a matter of fact, you perhaps answered this final, but would you withhold grain in order to promote civil rights. >> i would never single out whom as a trade embargo item because of a crisis in international relationships, it would include all shipments of all equipment, for instance, if the arab country ever again declare embargo, i would consider that not military or economic declaration of war. and i would respond instantly and in kind. i would not ship that arab country anything. no weapons, no scrap ups of weapons, no oil plant, no nothing. i wouldn't single out just food.
>> this republican administration gave me one about it overseas. now, ten to $12 billion worth of arms overseas to quite often use these weapons to fight each other. the shift in emphasis has been disturbing to me, speaking about the middle east. 60% of all weapons that went into the middle east are provision, now 75%. now 60% go to the arab countries this does not include iran. if you include iran, our present shipment of weapons to the middle east, only 20% goes to israel. . it's yielding to economic pressure on the part of the arab, on all issue. and it's also a tremendous indicati
indication. we have not addressed the kmrge, policy, adequate. we still have no comprehension in this country. it's an overall sign of weakness, economically. hi unemployment, confused government, wasteful defense establishment. this encourages the kind of pressure that's been put on us. it it would have been inconceivable for us to be brought to our knees with an arab oil embargo. but it was done three years ago our priorities to meet the own. and second to meet the needs of allies and friends and only -- military equipment the foreign country. as a matter of fact, iran is going to get 80 f 14s before we
meet our own air force orders and the shipments class destroys to iran, a much more highly sophisticated than. >> if i understand you correctly, you would withhold arms from iran and saudi arabia and if it was should be securing those arms from somewhere else. if the embargo came, you would respond in kind, do i have it correctly. >> if iran is not in arab countries, you know. but if saudi arabia so there would be no doubt in their mind. i think under the circumstances, they would remain from pushing us to our knees, as they did in
1973 with their previous embargo. >> president ford. >> since i've been president, we have eve sold the israelis in military hardware. we have made available to the israelis over 45%. >> so they've done a good job in helping our good ally israel and we're dedicated to the security of israel. i believe that governor carter doesn't realize the need and necessity for the soviet union
and communist dominated government of iraq, neighbors of iran and iran is an ally of the united states. it's my strong feeling that we ought to sell to iran. the history of our relationship with iran goes back to the days of president true man. when he decided we should help that country and iran has been a good ally. in 1973 when there was an oil embargo, iran did not participate. iran continued to sell oil to the united states. i believe that it's in our interest and in the interest of
israel. >> the policy of your administration is normalize relations with chie thana. that means doing something about the mutual defense treaty with taiwan. if you are elected, would you move to establish full diplomatic relations and aggregate and much wa-- would y provide mainland china with military equipment if the chinese were to ask. >> our relationship with the people's republic of china is based upon the shanghai communique of 1972. that calls for the normalization between the united states and the people's republic. it doesn't set a times schedule.
it doesn't make and obligations to the taiwanese government. it does say that the differences between the people's republic on the one hand and taiwan on the other shall be settled by peaceful means. that result is this administration and during my time as the president for the next four years, we will continue to move for normalization of relation in the traditional sense and we will insist that the disputes between taiwan and the people's republic be settled peacefully as was agreed in the shanghai communique of 1972. the ford administration will not let down, will not eliminate or
forget our obligation to the people of taiwan. we feel that there must be a continued obligation to the people to some is the or 20 million people in taiwan. and as we move during the next four years, those will be the policies of this administration. i do not believe that we should sell, give, ore wise or transfer military hardware to the people's republic of china or any other communist nation such as the soviet union and the
like. >> mr. carter. >> i would like to go back to the previous moment where mr. ford said we're shipping 40% of our aid. we're shipping iran, contracted to ship to iran about $7.5 billion worth of arms and saudi arabia $7.5 billion worth of arms in 1975 we brought visuals to their needs. after the war, the so-called reassessment of our relationship to israel, we ineffect tried to make israel the scapegoat for the problems in the middle east and weakened our relationship with israel a great deal and put a cloud on the total commitment that our people fill toward the israelis. there ought to be a unequivocal commitment without change.
it ought to be inclination to friendship. i would never let that friendship with people's republic of china stand in the way of preservation of independence and freedom of the people of taiwan. >> mr. frankle, question of government cart ir. i think you two gentlemen settle roughly on the same strategy in the world. how bad do things have to get in our own economy? or how much backwardness or hunger would it take in the world to persuade you that our national security and our
survival require very drastic cutbacks in armed spending in dramatic new efforts in other directions? these characteristics ouf our country have been endangered under many ford. we're no longer respected and show down vote in the united nations or any other international counsel, we're lucky to get 20% of the nations to vote with us. the so-called history shocked weakened our relationships there under this administration we had to keep separate the european countries thinking if they're separate we can dominate them and proceed with long range in type diplomatic efforts. i would also like to point out
that we, in this country, have led our economy -- let our economy go down the drain. the worst inflation since the great depression, the highest unemployment of any developed nation in the world. we have a higher unemployment rate in this country than great britain, west chairman, unemployment rate is twice as high as it is in italy. >> weakened of all our allies. that weakens the whole free world. strong economy is very important. another thing that we need to do is re-establish the good relationship that we ought to have between the united states and our natural allies. they have felt neglected.
the integrity of our country, that's where our strengths lie. >> individualized, regardless of the sign and establish world of the politics through strength. we also want to revert back and stature and respect now, i can't say when this can come, i can guarantee it will not come and gerald ford is re-elected and present policies continue, it
will come if i'm elected. >> if i hear you right, president johnson, also, had trouble keeping up both vietnam and domestic program, really asking when do the and more needy countries take precedence over some of our military spending, ever. >> let me say quickly under president johnson i can say the number one responsibility of any president, is to guarantee the
security of our nation. and ability to be free of the threat and attack. and carry obligation to allies and friends and carry out, they must go hand in hand and security of this nation has got to go first. >> president ford, let me say very categorically, you cannot maintain a security in the strength of the united states reductions of that kind will not permit the united states to be strong enough. governor carter, apparently, doesn't know the facts. as soon as i became president, i initiated meetings with the nato
heads of state and met with them in brussels to discuss how we could improve the defense relationship in western europe. i met for the purpose of seeing what we can do acting together to meet the problems of becoming recession. in puerto rico, this year, i met with six of the leading industrial nations heads of state to meet the problem of inflation so we would be able to solve it before it got out of hand. i have met with the heads of government bilaterally, as well as multi laterally. our relations with japan have never been better. i was the first united states president to visit japan.
and we had the -- of japan here, this past year and then that result is japan and united states are working more closely together now. the president said our relationships are never better. >> mr. truett, the president for president ford. >> you referred earlier in 1974, you agreed on that occasion to try to continue strategic arms limitation assault agreement within the year, nothing happened 1975 or not very much publicly, at least, those talks are still dragging and things got quieter as the current approached. is there a bit of politics involved there, perhaps more
important. >> and i'm thinking of such things as a cruise missile and soviet ss 20. making salt irrelevant, bypassing the negotiations. >> first we have to understand that salt, one, expires october 3rd, 1977. >> as i indicated earlier we did agree on 2,400 ballistic missiles that would mean a cut back in the soviet program. it would not interfere with our own program. at the same time we put a limitation of 13120 our
technicians have been working since that time trying to put into technical language a -- an agreement that can be verified by both party wills. in the meantime, there has developed the problem of the soviet backfire, their high performance aircraft which they say is not a long range aircraft, in which some of our people say is a intercontinental aircraft. in the end there has been the cruise missiles, that can be launched from land based mobile installatio installations, cruise missiles that can be launched from high performance aircraft like the b 52s or b 1s, cruise missiles which can be launched from either circus or submarine naval
vessels. those gray area weapon systems are creating some problems in the in the agreement for assault to negotiation. but i can say that i am dedicated to proceeding and i meant just last week with the foreign minister of the soviet union and he indicated to me, that the soviet union was interested in narrowing the differences and making a realistic and a sound compromise. i hope and trust in the best interest of both countries and in the best interest of all people throughout this globe, that the soviet union and the united states can make a mutually beneficial agreement because if we do not insalt one expires on october 3, 1977, you
will unleash again and call out nuclear arms with the potential of a nuclear haol to do just thi intend to do so. >> mr. president, let me follow that up by i'll submit that the cruz missile adds a whole new dimension to the arms competition. then a statement by your office to the arms control association a few days ago in which you said that the cruz missile might eventually be included in a comprehensive arms limitations agreement. but in the meantime it was an essential part of the arsenal. are you intending to exclude the cruz missile from the next agreement, or is it negotiable in that context? >> i believe that the cruz missiles which we are now developing in research and development across the spectrum from air, from the sea, or from
the land can be included within a salt 2 agreement. they are a new weapons system that has a great potential. both conventional and nuclear arms. at the same time we have to make certain that the soviet union's backfire which they claim is not an intercontinental aircraft, and that some of our people contend is, if we are to get the kind of agreement which is in the best interests of both countries. i really believe that it's far better for us and for the soviet union and more importantly for the people around the world that these two super powers find an answer for a salt 2 agreement before october 1977.
i think goodwill on both parties, and a reasonable compromise will be in the best interests of all parties. >> governor carter? >> mr. ford almost acts like he's running for president for the first time. he's been in office for two years. there's been absolutely no progress made toward a new salt agreement. we've seen in this world a development of a tremendous threat to us. as a nuclear engineer myself, i know the limitations and capabilities of atomic power. i also know that as far as the human beings on this earth are concerned, that the nonproliferation of atomic weapons is number one. only the last few days with the election approaching, has mr. ford taken any interest in a nonproliferation movement. i advocated last may in a speech at the united nations that we
move immediately as a nation to declare a complete moratorium on the testing of all nuclear devices, both weapons and peaceful devices, that we not ship any more atomic fuel to a country that refuses to comply with strict control over the waste which can be reprocessed into explosives. i've also advocated that we stop the sale by germany and france of reprocessing plants to pakistan and brazil. mr. ford has not moved on this. we need to make an adequate supply of uranium. mr. ford has insisted this reprocessing, or rather enrichment be done by private industry, and not by the existing government plants. this kind of confusion and absence of leadership has let us drift for two years with an increasing threat of atomic
threats throughout the world. we now have five nations that have atomic bombs that we know about. if we continue under mr. ford's policy, by 1985 or '90, we'll have nine nations that have weapons for explosive weapons. that is one of the major undertakings i will assume as the next president. >> governor carter, earlier tonight you said america is not strong anymore. america is not respected anymore. and i feel i must ask you, do you really believe that the united states is not the strongest country in the world? do you really believe that the united states is not the most respected country in the world? or is that just campaign rhetoric? ? no, it's not just campaign rhetoric. i think militarily, we are strong as any nation on earth. i think we've got to stay that way. and continue to increase our capabilities to meet any potential threat. but as far as as strength derived from commitment to principles, as far as strength derived from the unity within
our country, as far as strength derived from the people, the congress, the secretary of state, the president sharing in the evolution and carrying out of a foreign policy. as far as strength derived from the respect of our own allies and friends, their assurance that we will be staunch in our commitment, we will not deviate, and that we'll give adequate attention. as far as strength derived from doing what's right, caring for the poor, providing food, becoming the bread basket of the world instead of the arms merchant of the world, in those respects, we're not strong. also, we'll never be strong again overseas unless we're strong at home. with our economy getting worse by the month, we've got 500,000 more americans unemployed today than we had three months ago. we've got 2.5 million more americans out of work now than we had when mr. ford took office. this kind of deterioration is
bound to weaken us around the world. and we not only have problems at home, but we export those problems overseas. as far as the respect of our own people, toward our own government, as far as participation in the shipping of concepts and commitments, as far as the trust of our country among the nations of the world, and meeting the needs and obligations to our allies, even among our potential adversaries, we're weak. potentially we're strong. under this administration, that strength has not been realized. >> president ford? >> governor carter brags about the unemployment during democratic administrations, and condemns the unemployment at the present time. i must remind him that we're at peace, and during the period that he brags about unemployment being low, the united states was at war. now, let me correct one other comment that governor carter has made. i have recommended to the
congress that we develop the uranium enrichment plant at portsmouth, ohio, which is a publicly owned u.s. government facility. and have indicated that the private program which would follow on in alabama is one that may or may not be constructive. but i am committed to the one at portsmouth, ohio. the governor also talks about morality in foreign policy. the foreign policy of the united states meets the highest standards of morality. what is more moral than peace. and the united states is at peace today. what is more moral in foreign policy than the administration to take the lead in the world food conference in rome in 19734. when the united states committed
6 million metric tons of food. over 60% of the food committed for the disadvantaged and underdeveloped nations of the world. the ford administration wants to eradicate hunger and disease in our underdeveloped countries throughout the world. what is more moral than for the united states under the ford administration to take the lead in southern south africa, in the middle east. those are initiatives in foreign policy which are of the highest moral standard. and that is indicative of the foreign policy of this country. >> mr. frankel, a question for president ford. >> mr. president, can we stick with morality. for a lot of people it seems to cover a bunch of sins. mr. nixon and mr. kissinger used to tell us that instead of morality, we had to worry in the
world about living with and letting live all kinds of governments that we really didn't like. north and south korean dictators, chilean fascists. they said the only way to get by in a wicked world is treat others on the basis of how they treated us, and not how they treated their own people. but more recently, we seem to have taken a different tact. we seem to have decided that it's part of our business to tell the roo deesh ans, for instance, the way they're treating their black people is wrong and we put pressure on them. we were rather liberal in our advice to the italians on how to vote. is this a new ford foreign policy in the making? can we expect that you are now going to turn to south africa and force them to change their government, to intervene in similar ways to end the bloodshed as you called it, say, in chile or chilean prisons, and throw our weight around for the values with ehold dear in the
world? >> i believe that our foreign policy must express a higher standard of morality. and the initiatives that we took in southern africa are the best examples of what this administration is doing, and will continue to do in the next four years. if the united states had not moved when we did in southern africa, there's no doubt there would have been an acceleration of bloodshed in that tragic part of the world. if we had not taken our initiative, it's very, very possible that the government of rhodesia would have been overrun, and that the soviet union and the cubans would have dominated southern africa. so the united states, seeking to preserve the principle of self-determination, to eliminate the possibility of bloodshed, to
protect the rights of the minority as we insisted upon the rights of the majority, i believe followed the good conscience of the american people in foreign policy. and i believe that we have used our skill, secretary of state kissinger has done a superb job in working with the black african nations, so-called front line nations. he has done a superb job in getting the prime minister of south africa, mr. vorister, to agree that the time had come for a solution to the problem of rhodesia. sk kissinger in his meeting with prime minister smiths of rhodesia was able to convince him that it was in the best interests of whites as well as blacks in rhodesia to find an answer for a transitional government, and then a majority
government. this is a perfect example of the kind of leadership that the united states under this administration has taken. and i can assure you that this administration will follow that high moral principle in our future efforts in foreign policy. including our efforts in the middle east, where it is vitally important, because the middle east is the crossroads of the world. there have been more disputes, and it's an area where there's more volatility than any other place in the world. but because arab nations and the israelis trust the united states, we were able to take the lead in the sinai 2 agreement. and i can assure you that the united states will have the leadership role in moving toward a comprehensive settlement of the middle eastern problems. i hope and trust as soon as
possible. and we will do it with the highest moral principles. >> mr. president, just clarify one point. there are lots of majorities in the world that feel they're being pushed around by minority governments. are you saying they can now expect to look to us for not just good cheer, but throwing our weight on their side in south africa, or on taiwan or in chile to help change their governments as in rhodesia? >> i would hope that as we move to one area of the world from another, and the united states must not spread itself too thinly, that was one of the problems that helped to create the circumstances in vietnam. but as we as a nation find that we are asked by the various parties, either one nation against another, or individuals within a nation, that the united states will take the leadership and try to resolve the differences.
let me take south korea as an example. i have personally told president park that the united states does not condone the kind of repressive measures that he has taken in that country. but i think in all fairness and equity, we have to recognize the problem that south korea has. on the north, they have north korea with 500,000 well-trained, well-equipped troops. they are supported by the people's republic of china. they are supported by the soviet union. south korea faces a very delicate situation. now, the united states in this case, this administration has recommended a year ago, and we have reiterated it again this year, that the united states, south korea, north korea, and the people's republic of china
sit down at a conference table to resolve the problems of the korean peninsula. this is a leadership role that the united states under this administration is carrying out. and if we do it, and i think the opportunities and the possibilities are getting better, we will have solved many of the internal domestic problems that exist in south korea at the present time. >> governor carter? >> i noticed that mr. ford didn't comment on the prisons in chile. this is a typical example, maybe of many others, for this administration, where it overtlou an elected government. this has not been an ancient history story. last year, under mr. ford, of all the food for peace that went to south america, 85% went to the military dictatorship in chile. another point i want to make is
this. he said we have to move from one area of the world to the other. that's one problem with this administration's so-called shuttle diplomacy. while the secretary of state is in one country, there are almost 150 others that are wondering what we're going to do next, what will be the next secret agreement. we don't have a comprehensive understandable foreign policy that deals with world problems, or even regional problems. another thing that concerned me is what mr. ford said about unemployment. that insinuating under johnson and kennedy, that unemployment could only be held down when this country is at war. carl marx said that the free enterprise system in a democracy can only continue to exist when they are at war, or preparing for war. carl marx was a grandfather of communism. i don't agree with that statement. i hope mr. ford doesn't either. he has put pressure on the congress, and i don't believe
mr. ford would even deny this, to hold up a nonproliferation legislation until the congress agreed for an $8 billion program for private industry to start producing enriched uranium. and the last thing i want to make is this. he talks about peace. and i'm thankful for peace. we' we were peaceful when mr. ford west office. but he and mr. kissinger tried to star a war in ang goal la. it was only the outcry of congress that the secret deal was discovered that prevented the renewed involvement in that conflagration that took place there. >> i'm sorry to say we do not have time enough for two complete sequences of questions. we now only have 12 minutes left. therefore, i would like to ask for shorter questions and shorter answers. and we also will drop the follow-up question. each candidate may still respond to the other's answer.
mr. tewitt, question for governor carter. >> governor carter, the most communications i received concerned panama. would you as president be prepared to sign a treaty which at a fixed date yielded administrative and economic control of the canal zone, and shared defense, which as i understand it is the position the united states took in 1974. >> well, here again, the panamanian question is one that's been confused by mr. ford. he had directed his diplomatic representative to yield to the panamanians full sovereignty over the panama canal zone at the end of a certain period of time. when mr. reagan raised this question in florida, mr. ford not only disavowed his instructions, but he also even dropped par entheticily the use
of the word daytime. i would never give up complete control, or practical control of the panama canal zone. but i would continue to negotiate with the pain a main yans when the original treaty was signed back in the early 1900s when theodore roosevelt was president, panama retained sovereignty over the panamanian canal zone. now, i would be willing to go ahead with negotiations. i believe that we could share more fully responsibilities for the panama canal zone with panama. i would be willing to continue to raise the payment for shipments of goods through the panama canal zone. i might even be willing to reduce to some degree our military placements in the panama canal zone. but i will not relinquish practical control of the panama canal zone anytime in the near future. >> president ford? >> the united states must and will maintain complete access to
the panama canal. the united states must maintain a defense capability of the panama canal. and the united states will maintain our national security interests in the panama canal. the negotiations for the panama canal started under president johnson and have continued up to the present time. i believe those negotiations should continue. but there are certain guidelines that must be followed. and i've just defined them. let me take just a minute to comment on something that governor carter said. a nonproliferation in may of 1975, i called for a conference of nuclear suppliers. that conference has met six times. in may of this year, governor carter took the first initiative approximately 12 months after i had taken my initiative a year ago.
>> mr. valeriani. >> the accounting office put out a report suggesting that you shot from the hip in the rescue mission and that you ignored diplomatic messages saying a solution was in prospect. why didn't you do more diplomatically at the time? and did the white house try to prevent the release of that report? >> the white house did not prevent the release of that report. on july 12th of this year, we gave full permission for the release of that report. i was very disappointed in the fact that the gao released that report, because i think it interjected political partisan politics at the present time. but let me comment on the report. somebody who sits in washington, d.c., 18 months after the incident can be a very good grandstand quarterback.
and let me make another observation. this morning i got a call from the skipper of the maya guez. he was furious, because he told me that it was the action of me, president ford, that saved the lives of the crew of the maya guez. i assure you if we had not taken the strong and forceful action that we did, we would have been criticized very, very severely for sitting back and not moving. captain miller is thankful. the crew is thankful. we did the right thing. it seems to me that those who sit in washington 18 months after the incident are not the best judges of the decision-making process that had to be made by the national security counsel, and which myself at the time the incident was developing in the pacific.
let me assure you that we made every possible overture to the people's republic of china and through them to the cambodian government, we made diplomatic protests to the cambodian government through the united nations. every possible diplomatic means was utilized. but at the same time, i had a responsibility, and so did the national security council to meet the problem at hand. and we handled it responsibly. and i thank captain miller's testimony to that effect is the best evidence. >> governor carter? >> well, i'm reluctant to comment on the recent report. i haven't read it. i think the american people have only one requirement.
that the facts be given to them accurately and completely. mr. ford has been there for 18 months. he had the facts released today, immediately after the incident. i understand that the report today is accurate. mr. ford has said, i believe that it is accurate. that the white house made no attempt to block the issuing of that report. i don't know if that's exactly accurate or not. i understand that both the department of state and the defense department have approved the accuracy of today's report, or yesterday's report. and also, the national security agency. i don't know what was right or what was wrong or what was done. the only thing i believe is, that whatever the knowledge was, that mr. ford had, should have been given to the american people. 18 months ago, immediately after the incident occurred. this is what the american people
want. when something happens that endangers our security, or when something that threatens our stature in the world, or when american people are endangered by the actions of a foreign country, just 40 sailors, we obviously had to move aggressively and quickly to rescue them. but then after the immediate action is taken, i believe the president has an obligation to tell the american people the truth and not wait 18 months later for the report to be issued. >> gentlemen, at this time we have time for only two very short questions. mr. frankel, a question for governor carter. >> governor carter, if the price of gaining influence among the arabs is closing our eyes a little bit to their boycott against israel, how would you handle that? >> i believe that the boycott of american businesses by the arab
countries, because those businesses trade with israel, or because they have american jews who are owners or directors in their company, is an absolute disgrace. this is the first time that i remember in the history of our country when we've let a foreign country circumvent or change our bill of rights. i'll do everything i can as president to stop the boycott of american businesses by the arab countries. it's not a matter of diplomacy or trade with me, it's a matter of morality. and i don't believe that arab countries will pursue it when we have a strong president who will protect the spintegrity of our country and protect people in this country who happen to be jews, that may later be catholics, it may later be baptists who are threatened by some foreign country. but we ought to stand staunch. i think it's a disgrace that so
far that so far mr. ford's administration blocked every instance of the boycott. it would have prevented the boycott from continuing. >> president ford? >> again, governor carter is inaccurate. the arab boycott action was first taken in 1952. and in november of 1975, i was the first president to order the executive branch to take action, affirmative action through the department of commerce and other cabinet departments to make certain that no american businessman or business organization should discriminate against jews because of an arab boycott. and i might add that my administration -- and i'm very proud of it -- is the first administration that has taken an
antitrust action against companies in this country that have allegedly cooperated with the arab boycott. just on monday of this week, i signed a tax bill that included an amendment that would prevent companies in the united states from taking a tax deduction. if they have in any way whatsoever cooperated with the arab boycott. and last week when we were trying to get the exported administration act through the congress, necessary legislation, my administration went to capitol hill and tried to convince the house and the senate that we should have an amendment on that legislation which would take strong and effective action against those who participate or cooperate with the arab boycott. one other point.
because the congress failed to act, i am going to announce tomorrow that the department of commerce will disclose those companies that have participated in the arab boycott. this is something that we can do, that congress failed to do it, and we intend to do it. >> mr. tewitt a very brief question for mr. ford. >> mr. president, if you get the accounting of missing in action that you want from north vietnam, or vietnam, i'm sorry, now, would you then be prepared to reopen negotiations for restoration of relations with that country? >> let me restate our policy. as long as vietnam, north vietnam does not give us a full and complete accounting of our missing in action, i will never go along with the admission of vietnam to the united nations. if they do give us a bona fide complete accounting of the 800
m.i.a.s, then i believe that the united states should begin negotiations for the admission of vietnam to the united nations. but not until they have given us the full accounting of our m.i.a.s. >> governor carter? >> one of the most embarrass in things of the ford administration that touches specifically on human rights is his refusal to appoint a presidential commission to go to vietnam, to go to laos, to go to cambodia, and try to trade for the release of information about those who are missing in action in those wars. this is what the families of m.i.a.s want. so far, mr. ford has not done it. we've had several fragmentary efforts by congress and private citizens.
we need to sit down and negotiate for release of m.i.a.s. so far, mr. ford has not responded. i also would never normalize relationships with vietnam, nor permit them to join the united nations until they've taken this action. but that's not enough. we need to have an active and aggressive action on the part of the president, the leader of this country, to seek out every possible way to get that information, which has kept the m.i.a. families in despair and doubt. and mr. ford has just not done it. >> thank you, governor carter. that completes the questioning for this evening. each candidate now has up to three minutes for a closing statement. it was determined by the toss of a coin that governor carter would take the first question, and he now goes first with his closing remarks. governor carter? >> the purpose of this debate,
and the outcome of the election, will determine three basic things. leadership, upholding the principles of our country, and proper priorities and commitments for the future. this election will also determine what kind of world we leave our children. will it be a nightmare world, threatened with the proliferation of atomic bombs? not just in five major countries, but dozens of smaller countries that have been permitted to develop atomic weapons because of a failure of our top leadership to stop proliferation. will we have a world of hunger and hatred? and will we be living in armed camps, stripped of our friendship and allies? hiding behind a tight defense that's been drawn in around us
because we're fearful of the outside world? will we have a government of secrecy that excludes the american people from participation in making basic decisions, and therefore, covers up mistakes and makes it possible for our government -- our government -- to depart from the principles of our constitution and bill of rights. or will we have a world of peace with a threat of atomic weapons eliminated, with full trade with our people at work, and openness in government, people are proud once again, congress, citizens, the president, secretary of state, working in harmony, in unity for a future where people have enough to eat, and in a world where we care about those who don't. can we become a bread basket of the world instead of the arms merchant of the world? i believe we can. and we ought to. we've been hurt in recent years in this country. in the aftermath of vietnam,
cambodia, chile, pakistan, angola, watergate, cia, we've been hurt. our people feel that we've lost something precious. that's not necessary. i want to see our nation return to a posture and an image and a standard to make us proud once again. i remember the world of nato, and a world of the martial plan, and the world of the peace corps. why can't we have that once again. we ought to be a beacon for nations who search for peace and who search for freedom, who search for individual liberty, who sechb for basic human rights. we haven't been lately. we can be once again. we'll never have that world leadership until we're strong at home, and we can have that strength if we return to the basic principles. it doesn't have to be a strength
of bombast and threats. but based on the integrity of our people, the vision of the constitution, inate strong will and purpose that god's given us. in the greatest nation on earth, the united states. >> president ford? >> as we have seen tonight, foreign policy and defense policy are difficult and complex issues. we can debate methods. we can debate one decision or another. but there are two things which cannot be debated. experience and results. in the last two years, i have made policy decisions involving long-range difficulties in policies. and made day-to-day judgments. not only as president of the united states, but as the leader of the free world.
what is the result of that leadership? america is strong. america is free. america is respected. not a single young american today is fighting or dying on any foreign battlefield. america is at peace with freedom. thank you, and good night. >> thank you, president ford. thank you, governor carter. i also want to thank our questioners and the audience here this evening. the third and final debate between president ford and governor carter will take place on october the it 22nd on the campus of william and mary in williamsburg, virginia. the subject matter will cover all issues. these debates are sponsored by the league of women voters education fund to help voters
become better informed on the issues, and to generate greater voter turnout in the november election. now, from the palace of fine arts theater in san francisco, good night. [ applause ] [ applause ] "american history tv's" road to the white house rewind continues friday at 8:00 p.m., with the 1984 presidential debate between incumbent president ronald reagan and former vice president walter mondale. after that, the 1988 debate between vice president george
h.w. bush and massachusetts governor michael dukakis. on "american history tv" in primetime. friday a look at potential changes to u.s. policy in iraq, and the fight against the islamic state under a new administration. we're live from the hudson institute at noon eastern here on c-span3. all week on c-span2, we're showing live simulcasts of radio talk shows, and friday, from 9:00 a.m. until noon, a conservative political perspective with the mike dpal a ger show live from new york city 9:00 a.m. eastern on c-span2. next, road to the white house rewind from the 1992 presidential campaign between president george h.w. bush, arkansas governor bill clinton and texas businessman ross perot. topics included taxes, and the
budget deficit, as well as foreign policy. and national security following the collapse of the soviet union. this 90-minute debate took place at washington university in st. louis. good evening. and welcome to the first of three debates among the major candidates for president of the united states, sponsored by the commission on presidential debates. the candidates are independent candy ross perot, governor bill clinton, the democratic nominee, and president george bush, the republican nominee. i am jim lara, and i will be the moderator for this 90-minute event, which is taking place before an audience here in the athletic complex on the campus of washington university in st. louis, missouri. three journalists will be asking questions tonight. they are john mashick of the
boston globe, ann come ton of abc news, and sam van oaker, a free lance journalist. we will follow a format agreed to by representatives of the clinton and bush campaigns. that agreement contains no restrictions on the content or subject matter of the questions. each candidate will have up to two minutes for a closing statement. the order of those as well of the questioning was determined by a drawing. the first question goes to mr. perot. he will have two minutes to answer, to be followed by rebuttals of one minute each from governor clinton and then president bush. gentlemen, good evening. >> good evening, jim. >> the first topic tonight is what separates each of you from the other. mr. perot, what do you believe tonight is the single most important