tv North Korean Nuclear Program CSPAN June 25, 2018 8:33am-10:07am EDT
20 seconds when we will feature a visit to alaska. watch alaska weekend on c-span, c-span.org or listen on the c-span radio app. >> next, foreign-policy experts discuss the future of north korea's nuclear program after the recent summit in singapore between president trump and north korean leader kim jong-un. from the carnegie endowment for international peace, this is an hour and a half. >> so good morning, everyone. thanks for coming out. my name is toby dalton. on the codirector of the nuclear policy program here at the carnegie endowment. it's my pleasure to welcome you this morning. thanks to all of you who might otherwise be washington capitals
fans celebrating with the team but we are very appreciative that you decided instead to be with us talking about what has happened in singapore overnight and what it all means going forward. i think it's fair to say that if you look at what has transpired over the last year and over the last nine months, the developments around the korean peninsula are really surprising. so nine months ago we had north korea testing hydrogen bomb, and president trump famously calling kim jong-un little rocket man. six months ago with north korea testing this very large icbm that but all assessments can target the united states. and then four months ago you had this amazing reversal and you had the olympics and north korea participate in the olympics and marching with the south korean team.
six weeks ago you had the inter-korean summit at the production of very hopeful statement, the declaration. so it was a very short time we witnessed major, major shifts in the outlook there. i think it's fair to say had any of the spin up to predict as we should've quit our day jobs and started betting on horses at something. unbelievable how quickly things have shifted. we started think about having this event already in march, even before we knew there was going to be a summit on this day, and mostly it was because we had this report to launch that was look at the longer-term development of deterrence around the korean peninsula. so lo and behold it turned out june 12 is a great day to talk about deterrence on the korean peninsula. a lot of other things, too. we will do that today. what we will do is have a conversation with these experts
from the region. we were noting that we almost had the six parties with the exception of the russians and the north koreans but we'll have good diversity of views and perspectives, and we can dissect what we think has happened and what may not apartment and what may happen going forward, and talk a little bit about have different perceptions of perspective in the region are going to matter as we try to sustain this diplomacy that has begun in singapore overnight. so i want to first introduced the panel, start to my left with laura rosenberger who is of the senior fellow and director of the allied security and democracy at the marshall fund. next to her is soojin park, public policy polling in residence at the wilson center in washington. next to her is narushige michishita who is professor and director of the security and international studies program at the national graduate institute for policy studies at tokyo. last but not least my colleague
tong zhao who works as a fellow at the center for global policy in beijing. so first, what happened? laura, what happened? >> i had the great joy being on a redeye for part of events of last night so i was reconstructing what happened very rapidly this morning, have been taken off as trump and kim were signing an unknown document and the great mystery that went around that. my main take away in terms of what happened is, one, i will confess that i was somebody who went into these events with trepidation about worst-case scenarios. worst case scenarios some kind of major blowup at the table. somebody walks out. u.s. somebody offending somebody and you have major breakdown. that didn't happen. the other scenario was that you have the illusion of some major
grand bargain where kind of everything in the sunken rainbows, unicorns and puppies are all given away in exchange for probably very little. and that didn't really happen either. but what we kind of did end up with was a kind of very basic, vague set of commitments. some of those commitments are much less than realizing prepa's agreements in particular on denuclearization. we didn't see the word verification into. for many of us that's a great concern. the word irreversible wasn't in there. that's also a concern for mary many. but we have a lot of vagary. in the meantime i think with give up so much leverage. the summit itself was a huge win for kim jong-un as a solid with moon printed on the front page
all these photographs of kim, kim jong-un world leader, kim jong-un global rockstar walking around singapore. and maximum pressure is over. i know that president trump was talking about kim jin in maximum pressure in the press covers. max and precious been over since the summit. the chinese government has really let up on the pressure but we saw chinese officials today calling for the security council to begin the process of formally lifting sanctions. so we've lost an enormous amount of our leverage. the last thing that happened is, i think i had scratcher for at least for me and i think probably for several us is this question of the exercises which didn't appear in the document. there was reference to some kind of security guarantee or security assurance been given. unclear if the exercises were
kind of part of that. it's unclear what trump met by in the all the exercises. pretty clear that wasn't coordinated with our okay, that wasn't coordinated with japan. those relationships being critical for continued deterrence. and it's also not clear if trump knows what he committed to and if that's the same thing that can thinks he committed to. that potential difference for walking away with different interpretations, different understandings. anybody remembers the problems of walking away with different interpretations of an agreement and then what they can quickly turn into, we will understand why potential bakery round that is a problem. that's kind of a wrapup of where i see of what happened. >> soojin, , president moon said the other night he was very anticipating this been much into sedating the summit. couldn't sleep. did you sleep last night.
[laughing] did you sleep well or were you also worried about the outcome? >> i think i was with president moon on anticipating what would be the outcome of this historic summit. i honestly didn't get too much asleep, but i think today there are many things to touch on, but as a starter because we did not really expect this settlement to resolve the nuclear issue on north korea once and for all, just through one summit, it kind of met our expectations that we expected the kind of basic framework or set to be agreed upon, and that was what we saw today. so it's a good start, it's a fine start to begin with, but i do like to say there are many areas that we need to get more details on for concrete actions
towards denuclearization and also was also very critical is to have specific timeline of how things should go and what can be expected, in addition to the verification, which is very crucial. there are many areas that will need to be worked on, and i think, i'd like to hope that it will be discussed expeditiously as included in these statements and follow-up negotiations. from what president trump has said it does seem like secretary pompeo will take on that job without any pause. hopefully the real work will begin after the summit by these working level officials and diplomats and experts to fill in the gaps. but one thing that did take me by surprise was during the press conference at president trump
said wargames will be halted. and i think we need clarification on that term of wargames. what does he mean by wargames? so i don't want to say definitely what that would mean, because the didn't know what that really means without different ramifications. i am thinking maybe he meant halting of deployment of u.s. nuclear tactical weapons for military exercises, not joint military exercises altogether. because halting military exercises altogether is that something that president trump alone can decide on. it's an alliance issue between the rok and the u.s. although that could be discussed
down the road when we see a concrete steps being taken toward denuclearization, because we can't all get what we want. we need to give something in order to make tangible progress. so i think that is something that can be discussed along the road, but not at this point, especially if indeed he needs halting of joint military drills altogether. >> i think the first statement about we were going to hold the workings that was very definitive but subsequently in the press conference there was a little bit more detail what he said that in particular the flights of use aircraft from long, that's a long way to fly, very expensive to fly over the korean peninsula and all the way back. maybe there are some elements of the exercises he is picked up on and has agreed to stop, but as you said it's pretty vague at this point and we need more
details. and i gather the korean government and u.s. rok were surprised by this announcement hopefully the details will come. what is your topline reaction? >> i i would say a step forward and important step forward, but at the same time where are we? i think two people, mr. trump and mr. kim, made an agreement from which we can go anywhere. i have four different scenarios in my mind. one is okay scenario in which north korea will take necessary steps for denuclearization. i don't think north korea will denuclearize quickly and comprehensively, but they can take steps gradually. the u.s. and north korea can decide to improve their relations.
so that's okay scenario. it seems that north korea kim jong-un ambitious leader is interested in saving his country economy. second scenario is i have is about scenario in which we go back to crisis situation. the u.s., trump expect a lot from north korea but the north korea cannot deliver, cannot abandon all nuclear weapons in time and he will become frustrated, and if he starts taking kind of attacks from domestic critics during, for example, presidential campaign in 2020 2020 come he might deco take strong action, including military action against north korea in order to divert domestic difficulties from, you know, divert attention from his domestic difficulties to foreign
crisis. and the third, similarly bad scenario that i have is what i call a bad piece scenario in which trump kind of seems to be doing, says that is peace on the korean peninsula. there is no longer need for the u.s. to remain committed so we will kind of leave south korea. and if it happens, that would really undermine the security of the korean peninsula and might create absolute worst situation then were before. and finally i scenario, i would call gorbachev scenario. even remember in 1987 on this day, june 12, ronald reagan, then president, u.s. president reagan asks gorbachev to tear
down the wall, berlin wall. gorbachev actually did tear down the berlin wall, but together with awol he tore down the soviet union, his country, right? and kim jong-un might do the same thing. he is interested in undertaking reform in his country. his country, he might end up destabilizing the country which might end in the collapse potential and in the collapse of north korea which can create peace, create work, create a civil war, i don't know. we can go anywhere so we have to wait and see. >> tong, president xi jinping has had to so much recently with kim jong-un, not in singapore obviously, but how do you compare what you saw out of the xi jinping -kim -kim jong-un sut
and the trump-kim summit? >> all of the summits were symbolic. i believe president xi never expected north korea to completely surrender its nuclear weapons. it's clear that north korea has a two phased strategy. phase one, try to acquire basic nuclear deterrent capability. that was achieved by the end of last year and now north korea is in phase two, the primary objective is to regain its nuclear deterrent capability to develop a normal relationship with the outside world. i think north korea is achieving that goal right now. but standing from where kim jong-un is, i think after
securing his regime survival, after addressing the security concerns on north korea, now he's looking at long-term strategy for the country in the future. so i think from where he stands, he has a long-term strategic goal of creating a good environment in which north korea can pivot its economic development, and one condition for creating that good environment is to have a long-term positive relationship with washington. i disagree with many commentators who said kim jong-un is simply looking at one summit, this one photo opportunity with president trump. trump. i think he's looking much be on this. you want a long-term relationship with washington without giving up its core nuclear weapon capabilities. that's very difficult to pull off but he looks like he's making progress. i agree, the maximum pressure
campaign has basically maxed out, and that's why we're having this today. the u.s. before president trump went into the summit, has already lost its leverage with north korea. north korea after requiring basic nuclear capability has no urgent technical need to resume nuclear tests. and north korea is capable of offering self restraints, refraining from additional military provocations, giving an image of a responsible player wanting to engage with the outside world, want to focus on domestic and economic development, wanting to reach out to everyone. there is no way the u.s. can threaten a disarming military strike against a north korea or two of another u.s. security
council resolution to a post extra sanctions on north korea. so given the u.s. had already lost the leverage even before the summer, i think this result is a much expected. i will say one last point, which is i think in some sense president trump stumbles into some decedents. and this is i think mainstream chinese you. the key problem is now really north korea's nuclear weapons. north korea's nuclear weapon is the center of the disease. the disease itself is north korea's paranoia. deep bias towards western countries, it's a deep distrust towards outside world. the fundamental way to address that real cause is engage with
north korea, to bring north korea back into the international community to promote communication with, between north korea in the outside world. and to address that north korea paranoia, the best way is to start a good relationship between north korea and the united states. to fundamentally transform the relationship. i think in that regard the first point in this joint statement is both countries are committed to a new relationship. i think that's important in the long run, eventually that will help mitigate north korea's paranoia, graduate address north korea's sense of insecurity and, therefore, make north korea less you been on nuclear weapons in the future. in that sense i think president trump makes some good decisions even though himself might not be aware of them. >> this is an interesting
question, and we seen that reflected a little bit in the reporting here about how china has engaged this issue and the narrative is, china is increasingly concerned about being left on the sidelines during this u.s.-north korea response. does this set up competition between u.s. and china for north korea's favor going forward or is that too strong of a statement? >> i think right after the news of the north korea-u.s. summit meeting was announced there was serious concern in aging about, worrying about china being sidelined, being marginalized and losing control for future direction. we even heard wide concern from chinese experts from different backgrounds, in extreme cases there was maybe there was a
chance that when u.s. and north korea were talking directly they might make some deal in which they collude together against china. because china knows a long time that north korea doesn't really like china. if conditions are right north korea would be more than happy to establish close relationship with washington. north korea wants to play this role. and maybe conservative chinese experts also always believed the u.s. doesn't really worry about north korean nuclear threat. the u.s. knows very well north korea's nuclear weapons are simply for survival. north korea would never use nuclear weapons without being seriously provoked and invaded. therefore, the u.s. has simply been using north korean nuclear threat as an excuse to strengthen alliance network in
this region. given chinese deep distrust towards the united states there was extreme concern when these guys are talking together there is risk. both countries might as i can put nuclear dispute and try to forge a very close relationship. seeing that concern was exactly medicaid after kim jong-un came to china twice and had very good meeting with president xi, and by the way he took care china to singapore and north korea media actually published that picture with kim jong-un walking outside of the airplane with big chinese flag on on the background the l -- north korea still realize very much in china.
i think to address chinese concerns. but again another big factor is strategic rivalry. that's major strategic development in this region and against this background both china and the nine states to each other important long-term rivals. as a result, if north korea's come if a nuclear capability north korea is going to be a reality for the foreseeable future, i believe the thinking in beijing might become from the geopolitical perspective we want to make sure nuclear capable north korea has closer relationship with china and with the united states. i do see a competition there taking place. >> that's interesting. it's not typically would we thf things here, but do you see the future for some kind of major to political realignment? do you have the client saying
he's going to pull troops out of south korea potential for warming relations with north korea might change the picture? >> you know, i did a lot of work on the six-party talks in the 2005-2009 timeframe and we had thousand nine timeframe and we had of right at different working groups under that come in one of the working groups that kind of has been forgotten i thinking annals of history was focus on building a northeast asia peace treaty mechanism. the russians shared it and they sort of loved having that platform. that was the vision, a similar vision how we could potentially realign things in the region to provide some kind of broader system of multilateral institutions rules, bonds, et cetera. i'm pretty skeptical of that at this point in time.
it never really got very far then. we were at a a very different e sort of geopolitically on many fronts at the appointed time, and more than ten years on we are even further from that kind of position. a couple things i do what to pick up on along these lines and from what tongs just said. first of all i completely agree kim jong-un is playing the long game. of course so is beijing. xi jinping is playing the long game, and what worries me is i don't see president trump playing the long game. i see kim jong-un on really in the driver's seat of this route of diplomacy, really choosing his moments for engaging on the world stage as tong said, feeling he's got a deterrent in his pocket and a good enough place that is credible for him and with the confidence you can set up and go forth.
there have been many rounds of potential conversations about meetings with xi jinping since kim jong-un came to power. kim had been very worried about becoming overly dependent on china economically for quite some time. so i think the interest is probably their in creating some kind of balancing role. but do i see a broader application, i don't. what i do see though is a very carefully planned process by the north koreans. as i mentioned one of my concerns is just some of these examples out of singapore of a lack of allies coordination that can be exploited by kim. and i think all signs point to kim heading back to beijing to have a chat with xi jinping again about what happened in singapore, and so i think that
really insuring that we handle of the dynamics of what kim is a driving and a much more coordinated way and we seen to be pursuing is one of the things i'm really quite focused on. >> do you think president bush is but a short game or a long game? i know he doesn't play golf so we will leave aside the golf references. there's a big political shift that's taken place in seoul as well. he's been personally invested in starting and facilitating this process, but at this point it could take off in ways that might be quite uncomfortable for south korea. >> i think president moon, as you asked, has been working on peace regime. i think he is playing the long
game ultimately ushering in peace, and i peace regime on the korean peninsula. i think for now, however, president moon has become very aware of the significance of having a good alignment with the u.s., and the move to stay in sync with the u.s. policies for any progress to be made in terms of inter-korean relations as well as denuclearization. the analogy quite often uses two wheels of a barrel. without progress on one, the other cannot go. it's a matter of sequencing i think but the very critical and
the foremost goal is to move towards denuclearization, , even if that may take long, and even if we may not be able to achieve 100% denuclearization. although we will still have to have that as a stated goal, as stated in state that we will pursue. i think what president moon, his administration is working to put that on track so they can slowly moved towards that in state. in order for that to happen is to have the u.s. in alliance and also to have north korea come to the table, for instance, now. it's crucial to have the sanctions work. up until now it was working quite well, but now that these
new issues of alliance, especially with the military exercises comes, i think there's more work for president moon as he calls himself as a facilitator or a mediator. there's more work that's on his shoulders to make sure that this doesn't go off track and they remain focused to making tangible steps toward denuclearization, and intent in making also progress in terms of inter-korean relations, having the separated family reunions and also the red cross talks and reduce tension on the border, dmz, et cetera. i think we will for sure have a very bumpy road ahead as we did even to this point of having a summit. it was called off and on again.
i think we should prepare ourselves to see that kind of drama in front of us, but i think president moon will remain very focused and very determined to make progress and to devote himself as a kind of facilitator, mediator, to resolve issues that come up in front of him. >> personally, i bent a little bit critical of this i get south korea as a mediator. it's a u.s. treaty ally. they should not be mediating between u.s. and north korea. i think now he sees the potential for things to go wrong. i would expect they will spend more time focusing on the alliance again to maybe keep that on track. narushige, your prime minister abe has spent a lot of time focus on the trump administration and jason invested a lot of personal capital in it. how do you think abe will look
at what happened in singapore? what he see his efforts to sort of encourage the trump administration to take a harder line on north korea successful or not? what might be the domestic political consequences for him at this point if it looks like he's not winning on trade and trump is ignoring him on north korea and so forth? >> let me talk about trump's remarks in military exercises first year when he talked about possibility of stopping the exercises with south korea, his message was not targeted not only at north korea, but also at south korea. he has been saying south korea was a free rider. south korea has signed a free trade agreement with the united
states. south korea is benefiting more than the united states, so we have to really negotiate a deal pics i think trump, by talking about the possibility of ending u.s. exercises with south korea, is telling the south koreans we have to come we might stop helping you anymore in defense. if you don't want that you have to pay more for the stationing of the u.s. forces in south korea and we negotiate the fta so that will become more favorable to the united states. so i think it was a double message to the south koreans and north korea. that said, in terms of japanese response, i think japanese policymakers generally concerned about the outcome, because japan has always been hoping that mr.
trump will maintain tough, strong position, stance, vis-à-vis north korea, but he has used his position so much in this meeting. and i don't know whether he talked about abduction issue in a meeting with kim jong-un. in what way, we don't know. but given the overall tone of the outcome, i don't think trump made the strong point about the security concerns that japan has, including the issues of mid ranged ballistic missiles targeted at japan, and the nodong missiles with a range of 1300 kilometers. so i think we are kind of
feeling a little bit left behind and we have to find a way to get more engaged in the process somehow. >> so on the domestic politics, will there be consequences for abe if he is not seen as able to translate his relationship with trump into policy gains? >> right. i think position, his critics will use this to take this opportunity to criticize prime minister abe. >> i think the domestic politics has this issue, quite interesting come on one hand you had expectations that have been raised to unachievable levels, you know, comprehensive a complete verifiable and irreversible dismantlement was kind of the mantra for a long time until last week when it became clear that wasn't actually going to happen. but then you have democrats saying that's what the administration said and we will hold them to that standard and
over the weekend maybe you were blissfully wi-fi free at that point but senator graham had said great, if we don't achieve this than a full expect democrats to come on board with my brief preferred approach which is to explore limited motor options. what is your sense of how this issue is going to break along political lines? >> well, i think one of the things that i think has made the domestic politics a little bit trickier, too, is that i think trump has himself continued to move the ball and to do what he frequently says as part of his negotiators felt in the art of the deal is to really sort of ratchet up as high as he possibly can so that been you reach a deal some wood and in middle. in this case is not only by his negotiating partner tickets also about us. as you noted about a year ago,
many folks in washington, myself included, were warning about a significant threat of military conflicts. we had very, very hot rhetoric. we had a comparison of the sets of nuclear weapons happening. we had fire and fury. we had signs that the administration, leaks that were coming out about significant planning for conflict. of course the rumor is that victor cha nomination, a abbasd of south korea was withdrawn because it privately express concern about planning for conferences. i think there were such a collective sigh of relief in so many quarters that suddenly we were not facing war and we were not facing conflict and now we were on a diplomatic track. but what we saw yesterday in my mind is not necessarily anything that resembles at least my
distance of real diplomacy or a negotiating process. not anything like what i saw when i was working in the bush or obama administration's, in terms of a real careful negotiating process. so i think the expectations peace is something that has been the terms have been set by the president, one way or the other. he certainly will be selling this as a success to his base. the reality is of course that so many people are continuing to breathe a sigh of relief. i think the biggest comments i kept hearing overnight, yesterday and today, was the churchill quote, better than war. the reality is there's a lot of space and what does that mean? what i see right now doesn't really indicate to me that we saw the real framework for a meaningful negotiating process,
for meaningful diplomacy which one of my former bosses in government used to, diplomacy as a team sport and right now we had a one-man show. on the u.s. side. that is not sustainable and that is not diplomacy and that is not real negotiation. and so very if anyone comes toe politics of this i think we got to focus on what's realistic and how to reset the terms of what do those terms really going to be and how do we continue to i to focus and drive for that. >> please. >> you know, , when we talk abot military options, actually i a little more concerned about possible military confrontation now than before, for two reasons at least if one is the fact, last year when we were talking possible of u.s. preventive strike, i was not too concerned
because when we use force we didn't know whether kim jong-un was crazy or rational, right? so we have concerned if you use force against north korea, kim jong-un might actually go crazy and launch all-out war without retaliation against south korea or possibly against japan and the united states. so we couldn't take that option. but now given the summit meeting, kim jong-un summit meeting with mr. moon and mr. she and mr. trump, he has proved to be rational. he is a rational actor. we can think even if we use force against north korea, if it's a limited, necessary use of force against high-value targets related to nuclear and missile development, north korea might not go crazy and lash out.
military option has actually increased, improved come in my opinion. it's your good news, bad news,i don't know. another thing is by the end of the last year, mr. trump was saying one thing, mr. kim with saint another. they are doing, engaging in battle of words that they are not really engaged in talks and negotiation. but now they are engaged, right? to when they are engaged we will see who is really waiting or who is losing. at if you are on the losing side, you have to do something about it, right? so you have to take a tangible, real action to change that situation. in a strange situation they are talking, it's good news and generally speaking i'm more
relieved, but on this point we have to think, , to be careful that military option is still not off the table. >> i know you want to comment on this. tom, did chinese experts evaluate last fall the probability of military action as very high or do did he thint was not likely? i'm not sure that the consensus but i think many were generally concerned about military conflict breaking out. and that i think played an important role in putting pressure on north korea. >> and now what do you think? >> as i said before, i think the option is to read on the, practically speaking. basically we didn't get north korea committed to the needed -- [inaudible] and if there is still no result
in the following technical negotiations which is in near-term future, i don't see you as, if u.s. at the time once to start a war with north korea, i can even imagine china, russia mobilizing their military forces to signal deterrents against washington. in addition to very strong position from south korea as well. >> and also i just want to add that although you do have the point that there still a chance of military engagement, that's not off the table and i think president trump with want to maintain that on the table, although he is afraid of resorting to it during his press conference when he was pushed to make remarks. so i think although that is not off the table completely, i think in a way it might be helpful in moving the
denuclearization process forward. not in a way that is ideal but realistically speaking. i think it's not all that bad. good and bad, because north korea -- [inaudible] the president trump is somebody who could actually go that path. now that although things could always go wrong, i think it's important to note that president trump and chairman kim jong-un have built rapport and have begun a relationship, although that doesn't guarantee anything. i think it's meaningful. because once you begin the relationship, and from what president trump has already revealed, he seems quite happy with the start and confident that he could move along. as these from the appearance on the media, even if it was staged, i think it was a cordial
start, and they can communicate along the way. it's not going to be easy. it's going to be a long protracted process, longer than we may want to come but we definitely have to work on it without giving up, tenaciously. so i think given the vested interests on both parties can president trump personally and also kim jong-un, although we will have to test it out along the way to see if he is genuine about making tangible progress, i think we need to give it the benefit of doubt because it is a start. and given all these changes on north korea's front, although we cannot show, be sure are confident when hundred% if that isn't there to stay, there are changes. for instance, like you said,
it's surprising to see north korea revealing the reality as it is. traditionally speaking, north korean leader would've been very ashamed to show to its people that they had to borrow a chinese airplane. and coming out of the plane with a chinese like on it, although it's the closest ally, as you mentioned, north korea has a very strong distrust of foreign countries, including its closest ally china pics i think those things are not little things that we should just push aside. but i think there are some clues to what this new leader in north korea might be headed toward, as tong mention, he is playing and long game.
he wants to retain his position in the regime, albeit as a dictator but he wants to improve his economy. and for him to retain his position, grip, on the people, he needs to show, demonstrate to the people that he is capable of not only developing nuclear weapons but also improving their livelihoods in ways that they can feel. in order to do that he does need to engage with the outside world, especially with the u.s., for security issues because it is paranoid. whether it is granted or not that's the reality. so for it to relieve it of its paranoia it needs assurances from the u.s. and to get that i think north korea will be willing to make some concessions. an order for us to push that further along toward denuclearization, i think we need to give concessions and
reciprocate with the concessions, given that it does mean progress. >> the holding out of military options as a fallback position, particularly is maximum pressure has dissipated, how concerned are you? >> look, i've always believed in the national security space, especially when did with an episode like north korea. you never taken option off the table. that's the bottom line premise that is when all is going to be. that being said, i think i'm a little less sanguine man narushige about the potential consequences of the military option. i do believe that kim is rational, but i think that your scenario puts maybe a little bit more weight on command and control that i might be comfortable with, that if it were necessarily have the confidence in. i really wouldn't want to test
it unless we were like up against the wall with no other option, facing an imminent attack. that being said, one of the scenarios that does worry me, can assume or to one of the scenarios that narushige was painting earlier and is for different versions, is that we now do have this processing set of for implementation with pompeo and bone, and presumably a similar crew of experts working with them who have been working through the meetings and advance to try to work out some of these details. given what we've seen in an understanding on a couple of different things, trump was asked in the press conference about the lack of verification in the agreement, any kind of shoveled the paper threat and said no, no, no it's you. it says it. it's all good. it's complete. it's, , well, we mean it.
i can't member exactly what the phraseology was but you get the point. similarly, it's all there, it's all there, it's all fine. it's pretty clearly not there. probably i would resume for a reason. and you can see where the negotiations, particularly with john bolton as part of them, could come up against some pretty severe resistance there. when you've already had a meeting at the some level, you frontloaded the peak option here, you don't have a lot of runway after. if the talks break down and if you can't come to agreement on the basic principles of a verifiable denuclearization machine, let alone everything else, you know, then i do worry that conflict will come back as one of the only options that remain, especially given the pressure. i just really don't see have
pressure campaign can return, especially because also also think in that scenario franca kim jong-un can probably do a pretty good job of painting the u.s. as the one who was the spoiler of the deal. that would make it very hard to get china, russia and, frankly, maybe even sold back on board, depending on how things played out -- maybe even sold. the last point, at a don't want be one of those always pointed back to the old agreement folks but i do just for historical purposes wondered why people that of course we had committed in the past denormalization with north korea. we are committed to a piece region with north korea as a goal. we have committed to negative security assurances with north korea. the u.s. and the statement, i can't remember the exact phraseology but agreed not, committed not to invade or attack north korea with conventional or nuclear weapons
i believe was the facing. i'm getting affirmation from others who would be in the know in the audience. i would say these are things that we've seen before. that doesn't mean it's bad to read from them now. we are in a good place to do that but that i think just makes this point of the implementation being what matters, the results being what matters all the more important in my mind. >> this is a good segue for the last issue of want to touch on before we opened it up to questions from audience, which is as you think about plan b for if diplomacy also part and obviously you don't want conflict and so what you're left with is the in between space that is deterrence. we've written to support that you can pick up copies outside that thinks ahead at what the deterrence picture might look like. tong, i wanted to get justice because a lot of thinking in this report is based on the experience of the united states the siding with south korea to
deploy that that missile defense system in the south korea and the china retaliating for that. you can see this future in front of you where the u.s. and south korea to thwart against future publication might get additional things, more missile defense of the kinds of actions but then, visit these spillover effects were china feels the need to retaliate. say a little bit about what drove the chinese considerations on thaad and looking for and what are you most concerned about if additional deterrence steps might be taken? >> right. so in this report we expected a list of north korea's nuclear weapons would stay with the foreseeable future. given that u.s.-south korea might continue deploying military capabilities to deter north korea provocations at all
levels, nuclear, conventional, those military deployments would have original reactions from japan, from china. i focused on how china might likely respond to such future u.s.-south korea military cooperation developments. and i tried to identify those capabilities and those military postures that could generate the strongest chinese concern and reaction. all that is in the report so feel free to read. one lesson that is particularly concerning is china came out of the status bureau without south korea, but china basically made
though critical decision to move on. chinese threat deception about the thaad says never change. basically that dispute was not resolved but simply shelve the. the lesson drawn by many chinese experts from these episodes was that in the next dispute over another military deployment by the united states in this region that china perceived as threatening its interests, china probably shouldn't start with soft economic sanctions but probably should start with very tough tit-for-tat military countermeasures. that are so threatening to the u.s. and south korea that it forces the u.s. and south korea to come to china for serious negotiations. the lesson actually, the lesson
that china has drawn from these episodes, actually reinforce chinese belief and soft power and coercive power, which means it becomes another dispute of another military deployment, we are likely to see stronger and more overwhelming response from china. that is very concerning. i objectively speaking, china does have genuine disagreements about those deployments. ..
. >> so look into the future. i think if interdiscriminates arise, they have chance to see down to recap this underlying technical disagreements probably not. it's better to start today to predict where are the areas where disagreements might arise. and start the accommodation now. because we do use in depth discussion to address other genuine disagreements on those technical and more neutral issues. and that's the only way, i think, to prevent the occurrence of another major discriminate and maybe even conflict. looking in the future, i think
that there's even a more challenging situation. because now it looks like north korea is going to keep weapons for the future. so they will have to keep strategies to work with north korea. this is already managed. it's already resolved. north korea is not going to further invest in nuclear program. now north korea is focusing on economic development, that page has been turned. so now we'll engage with north korea everything will be fine. the understanding between china and the united states and north korea, south korea -- even more challenging for china and the united states and south korea to agree on what is the probabilities to deter north
korea. so i think even greater challenge for china and the united states to work out its disagreements. so they'll have china and u.s. relationship. >> i think that's right. and the interest in political investment that you're starting to see in the united states for augmenting our missile defense missions is going to make this so much more difficult and the perception of how serious a threat to the united states and to south japan and those differences in those representations are a real serious challenge to finding ways to get to this point of, you know, a stable peace regime around the korean peninsula that is talked about. >> so, in other words, that is not the ending of europe but the beginning of an era when north korea is going to generate
serious security challenges between data player in this region. >> thank you. i want to at this point bring in audience for some discussion. we have two microphones in the audience. and so when i point to you, the microphone will come and identify yourself and keep your question relatively brief. i saw that gentleman back there first. and so it will come to you and we'll take two at a time. >> when talking about steps and things. and after the trump administration withdraw from iran which was a -- you're going to do this and then you're going to remove those sanctions and that seems to be the core of it. you can't have a step type of process. so what is this process with korea going to look like if you both said they're not turning
around tomorrow and giving up their nuclear weapons, but they want to get rid of the sanctions. they want to become part of the international economic community. so if the step method is not acceptable, what is the process? >> so catherine here. >> i'm going to go to a variation of the previous question. since trump walked away from the jcpoa, he felt it wasn't adequate enough and to some degree i didn't agree with him. i didn't think it was appropriate to walk away from it, however. since verification is one of a key ingredient, one of the most important ingredients of any negotiated agreement, what will trump say early press conference
about how this is better than the jcpoa, or will he simply do what he wants to do, lie about it. >> that's a very pointed question. thank you. so i have two questions kind of a process question and then a verification and u.s. credibility question is kind of what i interpret it. do any of you want to take those up? laura? [ laughing ] >> i was kind of combined on a few, if you don't mind. i would start by saying, number one, i certainly can't speak -- i can't speak for the administration and i decided long ago that deciding to try to predict what the president will do, so i will not engage in that either. what i will tell you is, number one, of course, iran's nuclear program was not anywhere close to the point of where north
korea is today. so that sort of in my mind actually makes clear how much harder the challenge will be to get through anything that's not just jcpoa, but it's jcpoa plus essentially to counter the actual weapons programs and the point at which they have reached. number one. number two, i would say that i also certainly believe that any movement with north korea has to include a very robust verification reregime. the verification re -- regime is the most we've ever seen. i also recall very clearly that
the main preept -- precipitating factor in the last major round of negotiations in the 2009 time frame was inability to reach agreement on verification regime. and i can tell you that what was even on the table at that point comes nowhere close to what was in the jcpoa. so how we sort of feel -- if you close that gap, the process question, what are the steps. i mean, i can't -- i don't know. i don't see any other -- you know, if i were advising and i certainly believe there are very good experts who are trying to advise the trump administration's leadership. that process is really frankly the only way to do this. and i'm in a robust vavtion --
verification regime and the model provides it in both ways. again, understanding the difference in where the programs are. the last piece i would add on this because it relates -- we had to talk about the proliferation. they talked a long about the chinese view on north korean potential use of weapons and believing that that's not likely and it's really about survival and they have shown in the past to deliberate. and i think that that has got to be kept in line when talking about verification. because it is not, in my mind, an insignificant risk. >> if i could -- >> if you want. >> just add a little bit -- it
has to be some -- because of the -- maybe something that can be saved as a comprehensive deal by, for instance, the release of the u.s. citizen. prior to the summit voluntarily, at least from what is to the media, although there are some questions that remain about the explosion and its site, the nuclear site, things like that, they have done at least theoretically voluntarily in advance. and they think if we can work on having north korea in hopes of getting reciprocal reward take those measures showing a big
kind of a carrot ahead. you know, that would enable the president -- the trump administration to say we're not taking step by step. they're doing this momentarily. and because of that, we're giving these away. so maybe this is just a different packaging of it. but it is -- it has to be step by step. i would just add here that it's committed to a regime -- agree to destroy a missile test. whether that's the one they already destroyed or another one isn't quite clear yet. but you can see the potential for some sort of framework around which you can do more deeper negotiations, technical negotiations on what they would declare, how you would verify it
and what they would dismantle. i think that's an optimistic reading. but you can see an argument there that this is different than the way it was done before. the joint statement in 2005 and then all of these different working groups, we're essentially desegregating to share you have the peace process going forward. you have the denuclearization on its own track. if president trump is going to claim success for this, probably it's not under nuclearization. it's going to be coming to some agreement on peace treatise for the korean peninsula. if that has positive or negative effects, that's the question. i've heard it both ways. but it is different. i could hear the argument that it's not all at once. it looks a little different. it feels a little different than what was has been done before. >> they are speaking through
different reference. see the piece. so we have just the issue of testing and production of nuclear weapons. then that builds a challenge already because we don't know how many nuclear weapons. we have an estimate. but there is high end and low end. so when we talk about the comprehensive dismantlement of nuclear weapons, we don't know how many they have to dismantle. so that is what we can accept. in terms of materials, we have to find out where. but also materials and we can achieve them safely or we would like to kind of move it out of north korea. in terms of facility, we have to talk about the operation of those facilities and dismantlement which means we determine the term dismantlement and the party agreement which
meant -- actually meant also dismantlement. so this means destruction of the tower and then complete dismantlement. so then we have to find out different elements and kind of phase these elements in the right order. so it's very challenging and it's challenging in terms of this is going to be a very technical, highly complex and it takes -- there's a limit to the system that we have. we don't know where -- if there is any secrets in the enrichment ability in north korea. so there are a lot of challenges. >> this is where the rhetoric has met the road, if you will. so these two gentlemen here and one more over here. we'll do three this round and then i've got more, so this gentleman first. >> we keep on trying driving
forth. it's not a driven force. [ inaudible conversations ] >> and what we have. we have war in north korea and north korea weapons. looking at it from a journalist, can you just avoid to keep it unstable because it allows them to rebuild in korea and prevent north korea or south korea which can be a power house in the united states. so a meeting between the korean officials and russia. so not work out that this will be taking in themselves.
and it is presented to trump is already something that we're already doing. and trump is going to go with it just like in atlantic city. >> all right. so that's plan e for expelling the u.s. next one, please. >> thank you for coming. this is a good quality compensation care. i feel that this is the first of many sum mitts to come. summits to come. it's so complicated, it's going to take a long time. there has to be a lot more. i was talking to nuclear experts, so-called experts. i don't know if they are but they're real knowledgeable
people. they were saying it will probably take ten years -- ten years or even longer as he mentioned. that's a lot of years. there's a step to follow and so forth. so my question is i don't know if you're nuclear physist or not. can you comment on that. >> thank you. >> last question over here. >> hi. stephanie cook with nuclear intelligence weekly. i really can apparently use his situation as somewhat akin to the india program or that his program is akin to the india program and that he's now a fully fledged member of the nuclear weapons club that actually getting any kind of de nuclearization wouldn't have to happen under some kind of existing multi-lateral scheme
involving other states rather than a separate stand alone deal with them. and if that was the case, what are the options? >> good questions. so who would like to take up -- i'm not a physist, but i do know we have one on the panel. tom, if you want to talk about the decades involved in denuclearization, that would be welcomed. >> they aide if all things work well, it will take at least 15 years to achieve denuclearization. and looking at the physics side of the equation. and i think we often need to look at the physical side of the equation. i agree. i think they were indicating that it was no -- north korea has no reason to kill nuclear
weapon. i think he was clear when he said that. but the only way that you make north korea feel safe is for the u.s. and north korea relationship to get transformed from a hostile one to friendly one. just like the u.s. relationship has transformed from hostile one to friendship one. and that process. and that took more than 40 years. and that process was also accelerated by factor china which emerged to common concern to both vietnam and the united states and therefore drove the two countries. it was difficult for north korea to predict right now how long the u.s. north korea relationship could transform. so i think a 15 year estimation is simply too optimistic. and that's why. i think that's why we cannot
commit to a specific timetable deadline because you can't. >> i think this is an interesting point too. and the time is also a function of confidence too. and so with what level of confidence do you want to say that you have achieved x, y or z. and in a country like north korea that is incredibly opaque, a very big intelligence target, it's impossible to have 100% confidence on almost every aspect of the nuclear program. we can get close to it in some. but in others we're going to be very far apart. so you this hao, i think, asses risk and lower levels of confidence and what we think we know about the program. and that also relates to, well, how long is it going to take to develop a u.s.-north korea friendly relationship like with vietnam. >> but when we talk about the period of time that we -- it takes for this dismantlement or
this denuclearization, you have to take a look at both sides. technical aspects of it and physical aspects of it. so at the end of the day, we need to create a situation where north korea can live without nuclear weapon. and, for example, take south korea, for example. it took about almost three decades from the 1960s -- early 1960s to the end of 1980s for south korea to become a relatively poor country to an affluent country. and it will take probably more than -- north korea more than that. 30 years. but the question is can we say, well, we have to wait 30 years to see -- complete denuclearization of north korea. it would be very difficult. theoretically we have to set stages. so in the first stage we have to
take ten years and take a look at what we can do. and then extend the stages. and in the meantime, we will help north korea to have condition. and, by the way, i would say for a period of ten years, you were just too short. >> so, susan, can i get you to take on the secret plan to expel the united states question. >> well, i don't know if there is one. but what i can say if i can also pick up from what has been discussed is that it's so true that denuclearization is not just about the physical aspect or physics aspect, but very much political aspect. so i think it's important to take that into account. and in that regard to resolve this problem. i think we need to remember that
political aspect. and addressing that is partly having the peace treatise to replace the current omnibus. because currently we're still insecure. and so i think we need to find a way to address this issue. and president trump actually mentioned about declaring end of the war as kind of a transition towards achieving the peace treatise ultimately. so i think those are some of the things that we need to work on and to move towards to en tangle the physical denuclearization of the political aspect to build more confidence. and also another thing that i wanted to bring up is that although we'll have to see if the thinking remains with this current leader kim jong-un.
because during the previous dialogue and summits, his father addressed to president kim jong-un that should the security issues be resolved, north korea would not be against having the u.s. troops on the korean peninsula for a number of reasons. for one, it wants to have more stabilizing factors against south korea that should south korea provoke north korea, it would have the u.s. on its side. and in a bigger picture, as a stabilizing force in the region northeast r northeast asia. meaning they are very conscious of kchina's presence. so china's presence. so i think this is very, very prospect and something that should things go wrong and if north korea, indeed, confirms it is something that is plausible. so i think -- i don't think from
south korea's perspective there's any plan to drive the u.s. out of the peninsula. in fact, should we have a peace treatise and have a more stable situation, the change of u.s. troops status and maybe size, i think the majority of the people possibly even with north koreans. >> i think he's choreo graphing the stance. i think it's what trends and whether they engage with them. whether there's a broader planned cooked up with them, i have not conceived of that before. and i'm a little hesitant to believe that that is -- that
there's a significant enough operation to have sort of laid that out. what i do think is pretty clear is soojin just kind of alluded to and tong was mentioning earlier, beijing certainly has an interest in the scaling back of u.s. exercises, including strategic bomber flights over the course. but also u.s. troops on the peninsula. and so i think that there is a dynamic to many of those questions. and kim jong-un is surely aware of how to play those. on the india analogy question, many of those that sat across the table are familiar with the indian or pakistan model as ones they have sort of explored or thought about the positive as things to be considered. and going back to tong's point earlier about why we are at this point being that north korea has sort of reached the point of
having what kim at least feels is a credible deterrent, i think some were not surprised to seeing that negotiating posture at this point in time. i think the one thing that surprised at least just me, i'll speak for myself, i expected that turn to basically occur by saying we are a nuclear state. we will engage only if you recognize us as a nuclear state and it will be for the disarmentment talks and not for the purpose of denuclearization. right? and if that were the case, i think that would open up the kinds of questions you're asking about. but what is interesting is that kim has put denuclearization in the various possible, most aspirational terms working towards denuclearization. not even really actually committing to it firmly. but, you know, is that because he has a sense to realize that trying to bargain hard and
saying recognize this is a weapons state and engage in a disarmament framework would have been a bridge too far and instead decided to hold the denuclearization carrot out. i think that is probably what we've seen here. >> yes. i think just to add briefly to that, the legitimacy product that he's on is to build a state with nuclear weapons. at some point the other shoe may drop that we'll only get into these talks if it's a multi-lateral with all of the nuclear weapon states where we belong at that table too. we'll see. there was one last question all the way at the back, sir, and then we'll wrap it up. if you can just wait for the microphone to come to you. >> longview global. my question actually is to my former colleague and friend laura, and it involves congress. which we have not discussed this morning. there was some early talk about making sure congress was
consulted and perhaps some sort of final deal makes its way to congress. if i'm kim jong-un, i'm trying my best to figure out how we find something that is going to live beyond -- playing the long game, lived beyond what could be just two more years of the presidency maybe. and so i'd love to get thoughts and comments on how you engage congress. and, if possible, in this political climate, is there any continuity that we're going to see beyond the trump administration. >> good question. >> the deal will be a surprise to know that i come to some of these questions as a strong executive branch bias of as a general broad principal not tieing the hands of the executive branch to carry out u.s. government foreign policy. that is a broad principle. certainly congress plays an important role in many different
scenarios. i think many of us feel like we're also in a different world at the moment on some of these issues. and so maybe principles are a little bit of bendiness, at least. recognizing the circumstances in which we exist. what i would say is a couple of things. one is that there is a number of different scenarios in which congress could be involved. congress have taken a very strong and forward-leaning stand on sanctions. and there is a, i think, a significant role that congress could play in passing legislation saying you can't lift sanctions unless we agree to the terms of that lifting, which is essentially kind of what happened with the jcpao. i'm oversimplifying that. but you could see a scenario in which congress has passed, including just last summer in one of the only pieces of legislation that has passed with congress.
and so most bipartisan one that has passed to date included north korean sanctions. so i think there is definitely space for talking about that, number one. another place where you could see congressional -- a congressional wall is a question of military conflict. and this has come up a couple of times with the military. would the white house or executive branch need an authorization for the use of military force. and there were some arguments being floated in the press by the administration when this talk was really hot that, no, they somehow thought they had existing authority in this article 2 that they could somehow -- i'm not a lawyer, but i know a lot of lawyers were looking pretty eyed that at. but i do think the question is one. now, i guess, it gets really fought because if you're too far
on the front end, you end up with an iraq scenario. in what point does that come into play and how do you bind that consideration. i think it kind of ultimately depends on what ends up being really on the table as an agreement. because there are scenarios in which something could be robust enough that it should be treated as a treat. particularly if it really does deal with some kind of significant weapons xoent -- component. you can envision a reason to have some kind of actual treatise that is formally binding, which would, of course, include a congressional role. this is where my executive branch bias comes into play, and i want to see the threshold where that particular agreement would reach before feeling like this should take the form of a treatise or not. >> all right. so we'll wrap up very quickly here. dare i suggest that you each give me a 10 second forecast.
you have already seen where we've come in the last six months. six months from now. so january 1st, 2019. we still are negotiating. are we in some deterrent space or is it back to fire and fury? tong. >> i think u.s. and north korea will still be negotiating on the technical issues starting with raising the programs, preventing further attacks. maybe even stopping producing of materials. i think the physical relationship might continue to improve very slightly and gradually. i don't see we go back the fire and fury. >> agree? >> i like the scenario. i will give 35% of the first okay scenario. 25% to the second crisis scenario. 45 to the bad scenario.
and 5 to scenario. we'll see. >> all right. soojin. >> i'll keep it short. i know it's very widely used and kind of jaded now, but i would like to remain cautiously optimistic. and it's just the first step of a long road. and it's kind of encouraging that president trump has acknowledged the fact that it's not going to be resolved over night. and it's going to be a process. so with that in mind and with the beginning rapport and confidence building, hopefully things will go in the right direction. >> okay. that's really optimistic. laura. >> i think we're playing robadope which the north koreans -- i believe kim jong-un is different than his father and grandfather. but the north koreans have
always been very good in creating entrapment in negotiations and using them as leverage on to themselves. and so i think we'll probably in a scenario and whether that leads to something or not remains an open question on my mind. >> okay. very good. well, thanks again to all of you for coming and your attention this morning. [ applause ] >> go report to the washington capital now and pick up our report. thank you. [ inaudible conversations ].
>> today a discussion on the upcoming presidential election in mexico. we'll hear from scholars about the possible outcomes and the major issues facing the candidates. that's live from the wilson center at 1:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span2. . >> best selling author brad thor will be our guest live sunday at noon eastern. his latest book spy master will be published on july 3rd. his other books include use of force, the lions of lucerne, black list, state of the union, plus 14 more thrillers. interact with brad thor by phone, twitter or facebook. our special series in depth fiction addiction with author brad thor sunday live from noon to 3:00 p.m. eastern on book tv on c-span2. >> next, a look at work force shortages and other chaen