tv Washington Journal James Clapper CSPAN June 10, 2018 9:46pm-10:48pm EDT
now, a conversation with james clapper, former director of national intelligence, from today's "washington journal." this is one hour. host: kim jong-un has arrived in singapore for the upcoming summit. president trump is due to arrive in about an hour and a half. james clapper, is this summit a great idea -- a good idea? guest: i think it is. i have been a supporter since kim jong-un conveyed his invitation via the south koreans. host: what kind of prep does the intel community do for such a summit? guest: typically what would happen is they would be a series presidential daily brief
andcles about north korea undoubtedly, what we used to call expert briefs. i would anticipate the same sort of thing and perhaps reading i don't thinkough president trump is big on reading or studying. they would be a multimode approach to prepare the principles and his staff. host: in your new book, facts and fears, you write that there is an unwritten almost sacred writ of the intelligence committee that we should avoid engaging in policy formation. however, korea was one issue on which you let president obama know privately that he thought his policy rationale of not discussing anything else until north korea agreed to end its nuclear capability and ambitions was flawed. i was influenced by my
own visit to north korea in november 2014, to bring out does go americans who had been in -- incarcerated in hard labor conditions. i was the first cap beneficial to go to north korea since 2000 -- cabinet official to go to north korea since 2000. the mission was successful. i left frustrated because i felt we lost an opportunity to promote more dialogue. north koreans, when i arrived were anticipating to use their word -- leading to a change in a relationship. my first talking point i was to put to the north koreans was you must denuclearize before we will talk to you. that was a nonstarter with the north koreans. they were not at about that time
to do that -- at that time about to do that. i felt as though we lost an opportunity there, to engage with the north koreans. that is why i have been a supporter of this summit. it struck me when i was there that the north koreans at the time clearly stuck with their narrative and the americans got stuck on their narrative and the only way that can change is if the bigger partner makes the first move. host: how does a director of national intelligence of the u.s. get to north korea? a strange sequence of events. i found out later, the north koreans had asked for me.
the original proposal was for albright to go back instead of me to retrieve our people. the north koreans wanted someone who was active in the government, specifically a member of the national security council. i had a long history with peninsula ever since serving their in the 80's -- serving there in the 80's. when it actually happened, it happened rapidly. that is the rough background of how i ended up going. the new york times described it best. he explained me as a gruff rough relic of the cold war. what: what kind -- host:
kind of precautions did you take, knowing that they would be spying on you? guest: the big thing is no electronics. we did not take any of that with us because that would be a target for surveillance. we stayed in a state guesthouse, whicis in an isolated parklike setting just off the river. we had minders there to watch our every move. in a recent interview, a lot of attention that you did for your book, russia turned election for trump and -- this is from your interview with pbs. russia affected the outcome of the 2016 election? guest: i believe so. i have to make the point that the intelligence community
assessment that we officially rendered. this was the combination of two dozen analysts from the fbi, nsa and cia and a couple from my office. judgment, no call whatsoever about what of the russian meddling that we reported had any impact on the outcome of the election. on the 20th of january at noon, i left the government as the dark -- as the director of national intelligence and over time, in light of what has since been revealed, and my own reflections amount the massive effort with the rush -- that the particularly, various sophisticated and broad gauge use of social media and the fact that the election was turned on about 80,000 votes, to
foolish to think that the russians did not have a profound impact and probably turned it. that is an informed opinion and it -- and is not an indictment or criticism of anyone who voted for credit -- for mr. trump. it is a criticism of the russians. one of the reasons i wrote the to do my part to try to educate the public as to the threat the russians pose. host: you mentioned that he left office on january 20, 2017. in your book, you write about how you spent those last couple of hours as director of national intelligence. i went to afe and brunch at david cohen's home. he and his wife hosted.
john brennan and his wife were there and his grandson. and turned ond the television. the clock wound down and all of a sudden, it was noon and we were done. host: what happens at that point? continued with i a security detail for a while. i had one for about a month. that is about the only remnant. you are done, just like that. that is the way it works. host: john brennan has been -- in his criticism of the trunk. what do you -- of donald trump. what do you think? guest: that is john brennan. he is subtle like a freight train sometimes and he wears his heart on his sleeve.
he will express his exact sentiments and beliefs in public. host: human michael hayden both have books out -- you and michael hayden both have books same message, that the intelligence community is working for you, president trump a possible danger to american security. theme, andnderlying this is specifically in my book about the assault on intelligence. a theme i speak to is the increasing difficulty of knowing the truth where we have alternative facts or the truth is irrelevant. this is a dangerous thing and mike is sounding the same concern. the danger to the country, when we have difficulty determining the truth. , theis what the things russians would love to play two, casting doubt on whether actual truth is knowable or not.
that is not a good thing. host: have you met vladimir putin? guest: i have not. host: does the dni structure work in your view? guest: i think it does. remember the origins of the dni. it was a recommendation made by the 9/11 commission in the aftermath of 9/11. their conclusion was that the nation needed a senior official whose full-time job was to promote integration, coordination and collaboration between the components of the intelligence community. that recommendation found its , signed bye law president bush on the 17th of december, 2004. it is memorialized in law, to be somebody who's fault -- whose full-time job is to champion integration. i believe it is needed. it is a never-ending journey.
a system is large and complex as the u.s. intelligence community, you need something like that. a harvard business school grad would probably have designed things differently, but that is our system and i think it works pretty well. host: your first appointment was under president bush, wasn't it? guest: i was appointed, nominated and confirmed, just to finish the bush term with about 19 months left. he was held over by the oncoming obama administration and in turn, bob asked me to stay.
2010 to 2017, james clapper served as director of national intelligence. here is his new book. we will continue to go through it, as we take your calls. we will begin with bob in hometown, illinois on our republican line. caller: good morning. i would like to ask mr. clapper about a view he told joy behar, that america was spying on the russians during the trump campaign. did president obama authorize that? guest: i did express a version to the terms i. the point i was trying to make is that if we are collecting and ingence on anybody
this case it is on the russians, and that was a concern that we in the intelligence community have. ath respect to the informant least in the mind of intelligence professionals, there is a difference between spying and an informant which is the most benign form of information gathering. there is no tradecraft involved. the informant is not a trained clandestine case officer. he was not misrepresenting his identity or anything like that. or any president would not normally authorize the fbi to use an informant. they use hundreds of informants. it is a legitimate form of information gathering. it is highly regulated and overseen by the fbi. i did not know about this informant. with -- nor would that be the
normal case. michigan,k in independent line. like to ask mr. clapper why anybody should take him seriously. hee ngress and lied torydy he is an embarrassment to this country. what has been going on has been humiliating for us as americans. there is no good -- there is no differential between spying and going behind someone's back, looking at them and not letting them know. why wasn't someone in the trump campaign informed? -- why didn't something similar happened to the hillary campaign? this is america, we have a right to the fourth amendment. it is in the constitution. guest: what the caller is referring to is an exchange i had with senator ron white, a democrat of oregon. host: can we show that very
quickly? this is 2013. what i wanted to see is if you could give me a guess or no answer to the question, does the nsa collect any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of americans? >> no sir. >> it does not? >> not wittingly. there are cases where they could collect,ntly, perhaps but not winningly. host: was that the truth? guest: what happened as i started to explain, there was a which is before the line that was shown on the clip. the bottom line is, i wasn't thinking about what he was asking about.
i made a mistake, but i did not lie and there is a big difference. the details get into the arcana of surveillance law. he used the term dossier a couple times, and you can find the entire text of the clip which was not included here on page 207 of the book. i just did not think about what he was asking about. was thewas asking about limited metadata storage program the nsa had of about 30% of the phone providers, which was put in place as a direct result of 9/11. that is a way of checking when they had foreign communicants, presumably terrorists, to with --eone in the united states
communicating with someone in the united states. that is what said no -- senator wyden was asking about. was i was thinking about the collection on non-us persons overseas which is governed by section 702 ofhe foreign intelligence surveillance act. my comment about inadvertent collection is only -- it makes no sense in the context of the patriot act. sense in the context of section 702. even if i had been on the same page with senator wyden and understood what he was asking about, i was still in a better place because the program in question that he was asking about was classified at the time. this was in march of 2013. it, i have been
going to the hill for 25 years, testifying dozens, maybe hundreds of times, answered in open and closed sessions, thousands of questions. illogic, i think a lie on one question on live television. given the nature of the hearing, a two-hour hearing that preceded this question, i was not under oath. freely ate a big knowledge but i did not lie. host: here is page 207 from facts and fears. you can watch that full hearing at c-span.org, if you type in klapper, -- type in clapper, w yden, 2013.
cliff is on our republican line. komi leaked, he lied about it in congress. mccabe lied to the fbi, same as general flynn. the fire is court s never told that hillary pay for the dossier. this was during a presidential campaign. the pfizer court was never told michael steele was fired by the fbi for lying to the fbi. very incredible source. hillary clinton the fbi were dealing with russia. that is where they got their dirt for the dossier. entire conversations between the trump and foreign leaders have been leaked to the press. michael flynn was unmasked. host: i think we got the idea. a lot of dots that need to be conducted -- need to be connected. as the ni, were you aware that -- as dni, were you aware?
guest: we try to write all of them down. the infamous dossier. the dossier is a collection of that were notmos drawn on the intelligence community assessment. that is not to say that some of what was in the dossier, what was corroborated in our intelligence community assessment which was drawn a lot of other sources which we had confidence in. the foreign intelligence surveillance court, authorizations are typically a very rigorous process with a lot of documentation and typically, they don't necessarily ride on one source of information. i will speak only to my mccabe,ce with andy
when he served as head of the washington field office, which is the fbi local office and then became deputy director of the fbi. i thought andy was great. he did a great job. i found him to be a man of high integrity. i don't know about the specifics of what ensued after that. unmasking, another term that comes up frequently. protecting the identity of u.s. persons. engaged withsons valid foreign intelligence targets and that activity is reported on, there are minimization procedures which require that the identity of those u.s. persons the masked. asy are typically dcribed u.s. person one, person to, person three -- person two, person three. if you see these reports, and
you need to understand the context, i did the unmasking's. i can understand the context or try to understand the context of what was going on between that u.s. person and a valid foreign intelligence target. that is the key point. i'm sure i have not covered a lot of those points since he brought up a lot. the one i could jot down. -- the ones i could jot down. guest: did you say that putin considers trump a russian asset in the white house? guest: i did not say that. given putin's background as a trained professional kgb officer, that he would approach our president or for that matter any other head of state that he would deal with as though they were a potential asset, meaning how could i co-opt influence or gain
leverage over this person. approaches way putin how he deals with other heads of state. host: anthony is in las vegas, democrats line. you are on with former dni james clapper. caller: good morning. i read your assessment on russian election middling in the 2016 election and i noticed on page three, paragraph four, the paragraphnce of that states that there is no forgeries in the wikileaks emails. the media spins that and they don't tell that part, that there are no forgeries in the emails, but you did a brilliant assessment and the left media has really lied to us about the me house -- about the emails.
there are a lot of things in those emails where mrs. clinton or thering her diplomats u.n. personnel to be compromised by getting their dna, getting their passwords. that is a mess -- that is a method of compromising people and making them do your bidding. i have to say you did a brilliant assessment. i don't listen to what the media tells me. i look at official documents, i read your document. i don't like how the media spins what your assessment was, because in your assessment, you did say that there is no forgeries in the emails. i think what the caller is referring to is the fact that the emails appeared to be valid. , best we could
tell, no evidence of tampering or manipulating or otherwise altering the content. i appreciate the comment. host: edward snowden, 2009, you write the morning after snowden. the president never raised his voice or turned his frustration on me. how could you people allow this guide to jump around like this and not see that he was a problem child? my 50 years of experience mostly as the jr. guy in the room told me not to answer, just let him vent. i left the oval that morning, doging like an omega slicking away from a confrontation with the alpha, not quite sure if he is hurt or just feeling that way. host: that was -- guest: that was not a good day for me. briefinge short straw
oh -- briefing president obama when mr. snowden first turned up in hong kong. it was a difficult session. i knew it would be. we did not know whole lot of andils about mr. snowden just getting underway with an assessment of what he purloined. i realized that this assessment was not going to go well and it didn't. the president was very controlled. he did not yell or raise his voice. bad when i slinked out of the oval that day because i felt as though we had let the nation down and certainly let the president down. host: danya is in miami. caller: good morning. a pleasure to have an opportunity to speak with you. i have a quick question with
regard to the summit. i am concerned and i would like to know if you are as well, with mr. trump's inability to find or admit or understand the importance of being prepared for when he goes into a meeti with the leader of another country. as we know in this particular is a dictator, is no different than what russia lived in, in the past and to some degree in the present. have livedountries through with this type of dictator, a person who is clearly self-serving and ability toin his own rule, this perception of himself by the rest of the world, without regard for the people that he rules over or the other countries that he may interact
with. host: we are going to get an answer on the intricacies of meaning with the north korean leader. -- of meeting with the north korean leader. guest: the president self commented it is about the importance of attitude, and he has a point. that is an important dimension if you enter into a negotiation with a foreign head of state, particularly this one. attitude is important. preparation helps, too. i think president trump has had a lot of preparation. we began the brief when he was a on north korea, even then. that dni coates and then cia director mike pompeo spent a lot of time educating mr. trump about north korea.
i do think he understands the nature of the regime. his tweets would indicate that. it is a brutal regime. t we are in a much better place, negotiatinan talking than we were, six months ago we were exchanging very bellicose threats -- when we were exchanging very bellicose threats. i don't think, or at least i hope, that this summit does not get into the gritty details of negotiating denuclearization, which is a very complex subject. theope would be that president might secure an answer to a very important question of kim jong-un. what is it that north korea needs to feel sufficiently secure that they don't need nuclear weapons, and if
president trump could elicit an answer, that would be a very good thing. what was the connection , allen the dni, the fbi these agencies that have a role in dhs? guest: the fbi is rt of the intelligence community. a good many positions and the fbi are funded through the national intelligence program. crucial bridge between the law enforcement community and intelligence. bob mueller, when he served as director of the fbi and was succeeded by james komi, they were key members of the intelligence community. host: the next call is noel in new york, republican line. caller: good morning.
i appreciate you taking my call. say that i am so thankful that hillary clinton is not our president, because all of your deep state criminals would never be outed like you are right now. anybody that lies in front of of 13 and thench comes on the view and tells the view, that you admit you had a spy in the trump campaign and that you weren't spying on the hillary campaign. this is just such a mess. i hope you do time in prison for this. that is all i've got to say. host: a lot of callers bringing of march 2013. guest: as i explained earlier, i won't go through that again, but obviously i have a different view about it. i made a big mistake because i was not thinking about what senator wyden was asking.
it is as simple as that. i regret it. i admitted it. that is all i can say about it. the senate intelligence committee did not see fit to send a referral to the department of justice, which they would normally do. bearing it is not a because you are supposed to tell the truth all the time anyway, but i was not under oath because of the nature of the hearing. aboutller makes a point the difficulties that the intelligence community found itself in, with both campaigns. 2016, you were9, in -- and after that, you sent a letter to president-elect donald trump. the occasion was his
receiving the first -- his first presidential daily brief. weime-honored custom followed with presidents going back to kennedy. in that, i wrote a short note about ensuring him that the intelligence community was standing by, ready to support him with all the information we could, to help him make the difficult decisions that lay ahead and to try to reduce uncertainty and risk wherever we could. i further mentioned that i thought, i hoped he would abide by, follow and support the principle of truth to power, that not only would he allow the intelligence community to convey the truth to the best of their ability, but that he would encourage and protect it. host: and the phone call? guest: the phone call was the
11th of january, after a news conference in which he characterized the intelligence community as not these -- as nazis. he felt malik the dossier, which -- he felt we leaked the dossier. i felt an obligation to the men and women of the intelligence community to speak up for them and defend them. what i tried to do in the phone call was appeal to his higher instincts, by pointing out the fact that he was inheriting a national treasure in the form of the intelligence community, composed of a lot of dedicated men and women, many of them in many hazardous and risky conditions trying to make the nation safe and secure. host: all of those stories are detailed in facts and fears, james clapper's new book. jim is on.
caller: a quick question. please give me a little bit of time. thet, i want to know earliest communication you had about trump or a member of his campaign where any member of the national security council or foreign intelligence board, the national intelligence council or community management staff. that i want your thoughts about this guy, tommy robinson. he was smart in england, they silenced him. i think the state department should have offered him political asylum. happen here, too because president trump was under attack by use edition nests. brennan, rosenstein, mueller. you will try to censor the internet. you are trying to take away our ability to assemble over the internet.
the next time to grab power, i know you are going to pack the courts. you did it under obama. host: we are going to cut it right there. we got your point. a lot of anger out there. way shapeified in any or form inour view? guest: not in my mind. it is hard to know where to start. me andortant thing for it gets back to why i wrote the book, was the threat posed by the russians. the russians have interfered in elections for forever, in their own end in other people's. they have interfered in our elections going back to the 60's, but never as directly as they did in 2016. to me, that is what is important. some of these other allegations
and conspiracy theories are pretty hard to respond to. the intelligence community does not censor the internet. i don't know who tommy rawlinson is. the earliest time he began to notice all of this with the russian interference was at least in 2015 and built up over a period of time. in the late summer, early fall of 2016, i have seen a lot of bad stuff in intelligence but never anything like this that struck at the very pillars of our political system. host: juliana sans, then america have the right to know some of the information that he posted ange, did ass americans have the right to know some of the information that he posted? directorthink of cia
mike pompeo's characterization of wikileaks as a nonstate hostile -- exposing secrets and classified information that could potentially be quite damaging. ofet it about the idealism exposing government wrongdoing and being transparent, which in itself i agree with, but when you expose things that he is -- that he has exposed the potentially puts people's lives at risk, that is another matter. host: paul, orlando, republican. caller: thanks for taking my call. mr. klapper, i've -- mr. clapper, i've got some questions for you. you have a real credibility problem with me and i will tell you why. you -- iday, i saw all
saw you before a congressional committee. i don't know if it was house or senate, but you were asked if there was any evidence of llusiobetween the trump campaign and the russians, and you said you had not found any. a few days later, sunday on meet the press, check todd asked you --huck todd asked you and you said you don't know. ifsecond question for you is there was an informant on the trump campaign to protect the trump, why wasn't there one in the clinton campaign? on the first question on collusion, what i said and i think the caller is referring to an appearance i made on meet the press in march of 2017. i stand by that statement that
when i left the government, we saw no direct smoking gun evidence of collusion. that is not to say there wasn't, i don't know if there was. someone argued that there had evidence. hopefully that will be resolved one way or the other by special counsel robert mueller. whether there was or not, but is a cloud hanging over the country and over the presidency. with respect to the informant, these are tactical judgments that the fbi makes about informants and where to recruit i am not in a position to , aond-guess an investigation law enforcement investigation that the fbi conducted. in the case of the informant that has been revealed, the
target here was what were the russians doing? were they trying to infiltrate the trump campaign or any campaign and if there had been evidence that russians had tried to infiltrate the clinton campaign, i would hope they did the same thing. virginia,ce in west democrats line. caller: i apologize for all the people who have attacked you this morning. partl like fox news may be of russian propaganda and part of this scheme to make americans go against the intelligence community. i would like to remind the public that we have a president who is acting like a traitor. it is not respect the fbi. the same people that if you have a child missing, you will call these people and ask for their help. i have nothing further -- nothing but the respect -- nothing but ultimate respect for the people who protect this country. when they leave their homes, they don't know if they are
coming home. some of this immature stuff going on in our government, we have to come to some kind of solution. i really don't see why an would trust president trump. he could not past -- he could , yetass a background check we have him as president. have a great day and bless you for your service. guest: i appreciate that. i think the caller makes a great point about the damaging effect that the assaults on our institutions are having, particularly a great organization like the fbi which has thousands and thousands of great men and women all over the world who are doing what they can to keep this nation safe and secure. have theot help to
president attacking as he has been, this great institution which includes rank and file people who do great things for this country. i appreciate the caller's statement. host: what do you think of e term deep state? guest: it is a term i never andd of until the campaign the aftermath. i guess it means there is a cobol or conspiracy -- a cabal or conspiracy in the government or in the intelligence community that is devoted to undermining president trump, which is just not the case. there is no organized or disorganized deep state. it does not exist. host: rick is in springfield, illinois, calling on the independent line. wondering what the
gentleman's thought would be on climate change and how that might affect natial security. i know that the military is very concerned with it, considering all the bases that are located on the coast. guest: the caller raises a great point. climate change is happening. you can argue until the cows come home how much of it is caused by mankind, but it is happening. climate change has profound impact with respect to national security. it has all kinds of side effects. for example, food availability, water availability. i think he is quite right to bring this up because it does have a major national security implication. d with the steady
to with theed steady rise in sea levels around megalopolis's,-- many of which are on the coast, we are going to have a real challenge. i say we, but i mean the whole globe. host: somebody up -- somebody who appears in your book relatively often but we have never heard of before. stephanie o'sullivan. stephanie was my deputy for six years. she was phenomenal. favor line i used to describe stephanie was the one i borrowed from bob gates. stephanie's 8 -- spoke for me and in the not spoke whole six years, we never had a disagreement. she was a superb leader.
she was recognized at the baker award on friday night -- by the baker award on friday night. well-deserved, it is for lifetime achievement for decades of service to this country. she is a phenomenal person. host: fort lauderdale, public in line. -- republican line. caller: thank you for your service. what type of information gathering techniques is the -- does the nsa or any other agency undertake on united states citizens whether wittingly or unwittingly and what is the nature of the information gathered? does any agency have the ability to review or analyze the substance of an email or telephone communication of the average citizen?
guest: that is a great question. i should explain something that gets into the technology realm. if you go back to the heydays of the cold war, when essentially there were two mutually exclusive telecommunication systems, one dominated by the soviet union and its orbit and one dominated by the united states. if you saw anything on u.s. in the soviet dominated telecommunication system, it was a rare event. then we have the internet. now we have a single global telecommunication system in which everything is all mixed up. you have hundreds of millions of people, innocent people conducting billions of innocent but allions every day mixed up among those innocent
transactions by innocent people are nefarious people who include nationstate entities and knocking -- non-nationstate entities who are doing various things. ncaa, how to find those needles not just in one haystack but thousands of haystacks without infringing upon somebody -- upon the privacy of the individual citizen. the intelligence community goes to great lengths to ensure that they only doubt the nefarious needles among all those haystacks. metaphorncesed a that i thought was accurate, that the community is supposed to be able to discern when one hay ise straws of morphing into a needle.
that is very hard to do. there are -- all branches of the government are involved to ensure that the privacy of americans is not unduly threatened. , givenre mistakes made the magnitude and complexity of this operation, but i can assure you that we go to great lengths to ensure privacy considerations are considered and no one is unnecessarily affected. there is controversy surrounding the use of this data through law enforcement investigations. there is a lot of oversight over this, to ensure that there is no abuse. host: a recent headline on breitbart.com. need regulation for social media, something akin to the fcc. is that correct? guest: we set up the federal communications commission which is active today, to regulate
media of thesocial day, meaning radio and television. socialy belief that media platforms need something comparable to the fcc to regulate it. i think the recent testimony of ,ocial media platform companies executives, kind of illustrates why that is necessary. host: facts and fears, the desk -- did this have to go through a vetting process because of your position? guest: it absolutely did. anyone in intelligence or in government that has -- the rights of book has to take sure is no classified information divulged. i went through that and thanks to the great people at odni, it went pretty well. we did not have the change too many things or make too many deletions. host: ron is in new hampshire,
independent line. caller: good morning. i wanted to ask you about privacy. i am with the united amendment, we had a lot of work on that. we have a whole section in the amendment that deals with privacy. the question i wanted to ask was what is privacy, and why is it important? guest: that is a great question. ishink the notion of privacy keeping your own affairs unto yourself, without undue outside monitoring. the problem, given the , if you dotoday emails, mickey television call
-- make a telephone call, there is a record that ensues that is -- prior tof that the internet is very different and i think the caller raises a great question about what is privacy and how can it be protected, given the technology with all of its advantages, one of the downsides to it is the loss of privacy. host: a few minutes left with our guest. rachel in tennessee, democrat. caller: i just wanted to comment in the i find disturbing bipartisan group think of .nti-russia hysteria
to me, it is xenophobic. it is racist. it is like russians have become synonymous with evil, treason phobia, becameam a huge issue we are still trying to overcome after 9/11. ifs is what is now accepted you are xenophobic toward russia or russians, that is excepted and i find that truly disappointing and disgraceful for this country. we should not be ramping up tensions unnecessarily with russia. we should be partnering with and building up on their borders with nato and wanting to permanently stationed troops in
dangerousis is very and i want to go back to jfk -- host: we are going to get a response. we want to get a response to your views. after the demise of the soviet union, we made a lot of russia and engage prior administrations certainly attempted. the obama administration attempted to quote, reset the relationship. snatching back from me and their invasion of eastern and their crimea invasion of eastern ukraine, propping up a murderous regime in syria and other things the russians do, particularly under the tenure of vladimir putin,
and we will have six more years of vladimir putin, who sees czarlf as a latter-day with a strong personal animus against the united states and what we stand for. you have to consider the facts of their behavior. of thent the shootdown malaysian airliner over ukraine, which they did and did all kinds of things to try to evade responsibility for, just like they shot down the plane in 1983. russians have h -- have a long track record of bad behavior and we have to be in a mode of being very careful with them. i might also add that the russians, something you don't talk about now, the are now
involved in a very aggressive and is serving -- and disturbing modernization of their nuclear forces. if you soft putin's speech in the first of march where he five disturbing weapons, all of designed with one adversary in mind, and that is the united states. yes, it would be great if we got along with them and could find ways to agree with them, but we need to be in a ronald reagan mode of trust but certainly verify. it is hard to ignore their bad behavior. not: at what point do you meet with north korea, knowing of the executions and policies there. at what point do you not meet with vladimir putin, knowing about the malaysian jet? guest: that is a great question. we have diplomatic relations with the russians.
we have diplomatic relations with lots of countries whose human rights records are terrible, as it is in russia. judgment about when to meet with somebody, some andhat is an opportunity with respect to both countries, we are in a much better place if we are both talking with them and negotiating, rather than saber rattling. host: brian is in west virginia, republican line. clapper, would ask mr. apper a question, but it seems like he dodges it. i am going to make a prediction. most of the time i am right on this. there were going to be some people that go to jail, and i would hope that mr. clapper would come clean on this.
host: why would these people go to jail? is a known fact that aey lied and they set up group of people that are against mr. trump, and i don't know where the outside influences coming in from, if they are being threatened. gaine soros or the clinton or what ever, but i hope that these people in these last days of judgment would come clean. host: that was brian west virginia -- brian in west virginia. guest: i am not quite sure how to respond to that. host: is there a group in the intelligence community that wants to see donald trump fail? people in the intelligence community and law
enforcement community all have their own political views. that is part of our system. the important thing is, whatever their political leanings, there are many who are in favor of president trump. the important thing is to keep separate ones politicals -- one's political views from one's professional endeavors. large, the intelligence and law enforcement community, with exceptions, these are human beings mind you, they do that, they keep separate their professional responsibilities from their political views. host: let's go back to north korea very quickly. china hosts russia and iran for a summit as u.s. tensions rise. a summit being held in beijing. does this surprise you? guest: it doesn't. -- it is probable
quite understandable and we should not be surprised when we appear to be abdicating our position since world war ii, and others are going to feel -- phil that vacuum -- fill that vacuum. as we drop out of the transpacific partnership, china will jump into that void and this summit is another example. presidenthis were obama, would you be traveling to singapore with him? guest: probably not. he would have someone with him from the odni. that is what i understand in this case. we would have intelligence representation, but not the dni personally. host: howard -- how confident are you on our intelligence over north korea? guest: i am pretty confident in
it. andh korea is a hard target it is a hard target because we are not there. that is why i have been an advocate for establishing intersections between pyongyang and washington, to have double medical presentation, well below the level of ambassador, just like we did in havana. establishing a-- normal mechanism, the normal apparatus for double medical dialogue would be a good thing -- for diplomatic dialogue would be a good thing. host: everything we had discussed with james clapper is contained in his book, fact and fears. announcer: c-span's washington journal, lying to every day with news and policy issues that