tv North Korean Nuclear Program CSPAN June 17, 2018 1:04pm-2:39pm EDT
mid it into the group of nations. what are your thoughts? we are cooperating with russia, where we can cooperate, they could play a positive role in helping us create a more peaceful situation in korea. they could help us in syria as well, by finding ways of cooperating. unfortunately what we have had is, as again, this unrelenting hostility towards russia. that, we should find ways that are mutually beneficial in cooperation. korea is one of the areas where i think that could work. host: congressman dana rohrabachernal peace. this is 90 minutes.
it targets the united states we hadn, four months ago this amazing reversal and the koreacs and north participating in the olympics and marching with the south korean teams. hopefuls ago the very statement, the decoration. so it was short period of time. , major shiftsajor in the outlook there. we should have started betting on horses or something. unbelievable how quickly things have shifted. so what is to say, we started thinking about having this event already in march.
even before we knew was going to on this day. and mostly, it was a because we had report to launch that was though sort of longer term development of the korean peninsula. so low and behold. a great day to talk about it. we'll do that today. what we'll do is have a conversation with these experts from the region and we were noting we almost have the six of the russians and mort koreans here so we have views andersetive perspectives and we can do what think may have happened and what may have happened going forward and talk a little bit how the different per exceptions and perspectives are as we tried to sustain is diplomacy that has pe gun in singapore overnight? so we first introduced the panel, so immediately to my left
rosenburger isr who senior fellow and director of democracy at the german marshall fund. professor and director 6 the security and international studies program at graduate institute for policy studies in tokyo. last but not least my colleague who works as fellow at carnegie center for global policy in beijing. first, what happened? what happened? >> i had the great joy of being on a redeye for part of the events of last night. i was reconstructing what happened very rapidly having taken off and signing an unknown taken off as trump was signing an unknown document.
the great mystery that went around that. i will confess that i was somebody who went into events with trepidation. those scenarios the same kind of blowup at the table. you will have somebody offending somebody and having a major breakdown. the other scenario was that you have the illusion of some major grand bargain. where everything and the sun, rainbows, unicorns, puppies are all given away in exchange for you know very little. that didn't really happen, either. but what we did end up with was a kind of very basic, vague set of commitments.
some of those commitments are realizing previous agreements, in particular, the verifications in that. that is a great concern. the word irreversible was not in there. we have given up so much leverage. the summit itself was a huge win as we saw on the front page, all of these photographs of kim jong-un, world leader, kim jong-un, global rockstar walking around. and maximum pressure is over. i know that president trump talked about continuing maximum pressure in his press conference but pressure has been over basically since the agreement to proceed with the summit. the chinese have told governance let up on the pressure but we saw chinese officials calling
for the security council to begin the process of formally lifting sanctions. so we have lost an enormous amount of leverage. the last thing that happened is i think it was a head scratcher at least for me and for several of us. this question of the exercises. which did not appear in the documents. there was a reference in the documents to some kind of security guarantee or security assurance being given. i am curious to see if the exercises were part of that. it is unclear what the trump meant by the exercises, pretty clear at this point that it wasn't coordinated with japan. the relationships being absolutely critical. and it is also not clear if trump knows what he committed to and if that is the same thing that kim thinks he committed to. and that potential difference for walking away with different interpretations and understandings, the problems of
walking away with different interpretations of an agreement and then what that can quickly turn into, we will understand the potential vaguery around that is a problem. that is kind of a wrap-up of what i see of what happened. >> president moon said the other night that he was anticipating -- very much anticipating the summit. he could not sleep. did you sleep last night? 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 did not get too much sleep, but i think there are many things to touch on but as a starter, because we did not really expect this summit to resolve the nuclear issue on north korea once and for all,
just for one summit, a kind of met our expectations, and we expected a basic framework or set to be agreed upon and that is what we saw today. it is a good start, a fine start to begin with. but i do have to say, there are many areas that we need to get more details on to our concrete actions toward the organization. and also what is very critical is to have a specific timeline of how things should go and what can be expected in addition to the verification which is very crucial. so there are many areas that will need to be worked on, and i would like to hope that it will be discussed expeditiously as included in the statements. and from what president trump has said, it does seem like
secretary pompeo would take on the job without any pause. so hopefully, the real work will begin after the summit by these working level officials and diplomats and experts to fill in the gaps. one thing that did take me by surprise was that president trump said war games will be hosted, and i think we need clarification on that term of wargames. what does he mean by wargames? i don't want to say definitively what that would mean because depending on what that means, it would have 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 not something that president trump alone can decide on. it is an alliance issue, although that could be discussed down the road, when we see a concrete step being taken toward nuclearization, we can't all get what we want. i think that is something that can be difficult along the road, but not at this point, if indeed he means hosting of joint military drills altogether. >> i think the first statement about the wargames was very
definitive, but subsequently in the press conference, there is a little bit more detail where he said that in particular the flights from the u.s. aircraft is a long way to fly, it is very expensive to fly an aircraft six hours over the korean peninsula. maybe there are elements of the exercises he has picked up on. but it is pretty vague at this point and i gather that the korean government were surprised so hopefully these details will come. what is your reaction? >> i would say a 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 already four different scenarios in my mind.
one is ok scenario in which north korea will take the necessary steps for denuclearization. i don't think they will denuclearize quickly and comprehensively. but they can take steps gradually. the u.s. and north korea can decide to improve directions and it seems that kim jong-un is actually very interested in his country's economy. the second scenario i have is a bad scenario in which we go back to crisis situation. trump expects a lot from north korea and if north korea cannot deliver, cannot abandon all nuclear weapons in time, he will become frustrated and start
taking attacks from critics. for example, the presidential campaign in 2020, he might decide to take strong action including nuclear action against north korea. there is a diverse domestic difficulty to divert attention from his domestic difficulties. the third, similarly bad scenario that i have is what i call the bad scenario in which trump seems to be doing and he says well, there is a piece on the korean peninsula so there is no longer a need for the u.s. to remain committed, so we would leave south korea. and if that happens, that would really undermine the security of
the korean peninsula and that might create more situations worse situation than before. and another scenario i would call the treaty scenario, the hev scenario. if you remember in 1987 on this day, june 12, ronald reagan asked gorbachev to turn on the wall -- to tear down the wall. together with a wall, he toured down the soviet union, his country. he is interested in undertaking country to reform.
he might end up destabilizing the country, it could create these, create more, i don't know. we can go anywhere. we havd see. >> president xi jinping has had a two summits recently with kim jong-un, not in singapore, obviously. how do you compare what you saw out of the xi jinping and kim jong-un summit and the trump-kim summit? >> i think all of the summits were symbolic. i believe president xi never expected and north korea to completely surrender nuclear weapons. it is clear that north korea has a two-phase strategy. phase one, try to acquire basic nuclear capability and that was achieved by the end of last year.
and now north korea begins phase two, the primary objective is to retain the capability to develop a normal relationship with the outside world. i think north korea is achving that goal right now. but standing from where kim jong-un is, i think after securing his regime's survival, after addressing the security concerns, he is looking at long-term strategy for the country in the future. i think from where he stands, she has a long-term strategic goal of creating a good environment in which north korea can have one condition for creating that good environment, to have a long-term positive
relationship with washington. but i disagree with what kim jong-un says, that he is looking for one opportunity. i think he is looking much beyond and wants a long-term relationship in washington without giving up the core nuclear weapon capabilities. that is very difficult to but heoo like he is making progress. the maximum pressure campaign has maxed out and that is why we are having this today. the u.s. before president trump has already lost its core advantage with north korea. after acquiring basic nuclear capability, north korea has no urgent technical need to resume nuclear tests. and north korea is capable of offering self-restraint,
refraining from additional military complications, giving an image of a onsible korea wanting to engage with the outside world, wanting to focus on domestic knowledge. wanting to reach out to everyone. by the end of this condition, there is no way the u.s. can sanction a disarming military strike against korea or to have another sanction on north korea. i think the result is very much expected. one last point, which is, i think that in some sense, president trump stumbles into some decedents, and i think this is a mainstream chinese view.
the key problem is not really north korea's nuclear weapon. north korea's nuclear weapon deep bias toward western countries, the fundamental way to address that cause is to engage with north korea, to bring north korea back into the international community to promote communication between north korea and the outside world. to address that north korea paranoia, the best way is to start a good relationship between north korea and the united states. fundamentally transform the relationship. in that regard, the first point in this joint statement is that both countries are committed to a new relationship.
i think that is important in the long run. eventually, that will help mitigate their paranoia, gradually addressed north korea insecurity and make north korea less dependent on nuclear weapons in the future. even though he himself might not be aware. >> that is an interesting question and we have seen this reflected a little bit in the recording here about how china has engaged this issue and the narrative is china is increasingly concerned about being left on the sidelines during those u.s.-north korea responses. does this kind of set up, maybe set up between the u.s. and china for north korea's favor going forward. >> right after the news of the north korea-u.s. summit, there was serious concern in beijing
worrying about china being sidelined, being marginalized and losing control. i think that -- we even heard wide concern from chinese experts in extreme cases -- there was a chance that when u.s. and north korea might make some deal in which they collude together against china. because china knows for a long time that north korea doesn't really like china. if conditions were right, they would be more than happy to establish a close relationship with washington. north korea wants to play this role. many conservative chinese always believe the u.s. doesn't really
worry about north korean nuclear threat. the u.s. knoery we north korean nuclear weapons are simply for survival. north korea would never use nuclear weapons without being seriously provoked and invading invaded. therefore, the u.s. has to begin using north korean nuclear threat as an accused to strengthen -- given the deep chinese disrupt toward the united states, there was extreme concern. when these two guys are talking, both countries might decide to put aside and try to forge a very close relationship. seeing that concern was likely mitigated after kim jong-un came to china twice and had very good meeting with president.
he took air china to singapore and north korean media actually published that picture with kim jong-un walking outside of the airplane away from the big chinese flag. that show the actual relationship between north korea and china still exist and north korea still relies very much on china. again, another big factor is the strategic rivalry. that made her strategic development gave this background that china and the united states see each other of the most important long-term rivals. if north korea -- if a nuclear capable north korea is going to be a reality for the foreseeable future, i believe the thinking
in beijing might become we want to make sure a nuclear-capable north korea has a comfortable relationship with china and with the united states. i do see it there taking place. >> thanks. it is not typically how we think of things here, but do you see some kind of major geopolitical realignment? trying to pull troops out of south korea and the potential for relations with north korea might really change the picture. >> i did a lot of work in 2009 timeframe and we had a variety of different working groups and more than the working groups, i think it has been forgotten in the annals of history. the russians loved having that platform and a similar vision of how we could potentially realign
and so is xi jinping. the problem is, i do not see trump playing the long game. in theim jong-un driver's seat of this round of diplomacy, really choosing his moments for engaging on the -- engaging ona world trade. confidence he can set out and go forth. there have men -- there have been many rounds talking about etings between xi jinping since kim jong-un came to power. about being worried dependent upon china economically for quite some time. i think the interest has been there in terms of a role. application, i don't have. what i do see is a very carefully planned process.
as i mentioned ear, oncerns is, some of these examples out of singapore. kim.n be exploited by kim headingint to back to beijing to have a chat with xi jinping again about what happened in singapore. really ensuring we here in washington have a good handle on is dynamics of what kim driving in a much more coordinated wave and we seem to be pursuing. do you think president moon is playing a short game or along -- a long game? i know he does not play golf.
has been personally invested in facilitating this process. at this point he could kick off in ways that might be quite uncomfortable for south korea. >> i think president moon, as you asked, has been working on peace. and the peace regime in the korean peninsula. i think he is playing the long game, ultimately ushering in peace regime on the korean peninsula. i think for now, however, president moon has become very ofre of the significant having a good alignment with the the move to stay in
sync with u.s. policies for any progress to be made, in terms of relations as well as denuclearization. analogy so often used is who wields the [indiscernible] without progress on one, the other cannot go. it is a matter of sequencing, i think. the critical and foremost goal is to move towards denuclearization, even if that may take long. even if we cannot achieve 100% denuclearization. although, we will still have to have that as a stated goal, as end state.state -- i think president moon's administration is working to put that back on track. so they can slowly work toward
that end state. in order for that to happen, is alliance and.s. in to have north korea come to the table, for instance. it is crucial to have the sanctions work. up until now it was working quite well, but now that the new a lyons, especially with the military exercises -- the new issues of alliance, especially with the military onrcises, there is more work his shoulders to make sure it does not go off track. and they remained -- they remain focused towards making tangible
steps toward denuclearization and in tandem making progress in terms of relations. having the south korean family reunions and the talks and reducing tensions on the border of the dmz, etc. i think we for sure have a very bumpy road ahead, even as we did up to this point as a summit. it was called off and on again. we should prepare ourselves to see that kind of drama in front of us. i think president moon will remain very focused and very andrmined to make progress ofote himself as a kind facilitator, mediator, to resolve issues that come up. personally i have been critical of this idea as south
korea as a mediator. a south korea ally should not be a mediator. he sees e potential for things to go wrong. i would expect they would spend more time focusing on the alliance. abe hasme minister spent a lot of time focused on the trump administration and has invested a lot of personal capital in it. how do you think a book will look at what happens in singapore? will he see's efforts to encourage the trump a harderation to take line on north korea as successful or not? be the domestic political consequences for him at this link? him at this point, if it looks like he is not winning on trade and so forth? trump'swe talk about remarks on military exercises,
we talked about the possibility of not stopping the exercises with south korea. it was not targeted not only on north korea, but south korea. he has been saying they are a free rider. free trade agreement with the united states. south korea is benefiting more than the united date -- united states. i think president trump, by talking about the possibility of upending u.s. exercises with south korea, is telling the south koreans, we might stop helping you anymore. if you do not want that, you have to pay more for the stationing of the u.s. forces in south korea, and renegotiate.
that will become more favorable to the united states. so i think it was a double message the south koreans and north koreans. said, in terms of japanese response, [indiscernible] generally concerned about the outcome because japan has always been hoping mr. trump will position. strong he has used his position so much in this meeting. i do not know whether he talked about the abduction issue in the meeting with kim jong-un. in what way, we do not know. given the overall tone of the outcome, i do not think trump
made the strong point, of the concerns japan has. they have mid range ballistic missiles targeted at japan, with a range of 1300 kilometers, and others with a range of 1000 kilometers. i think we are feeling a little bit left behind. we have to find a way to get more in gauged in the process somehow. politics,domestic will there be consequences for a is not able to translate his relationship with trump into policy gains? >> i think his critics will use criticizetunity to prime minister abe.
>> domestic politics is an issue here. on the one hand, you had expectations that have been --sed to unachievable levels complete, verifiable, irreversible dismantlement. it became clear that was not going to happen. then you have democrats saying, that is what the administration said and we will hold them to that hindered. -- to that standard. said, i fully expect democrats to come on board with my approach, to fully explore military options. how do you feel this issue will break along political lines? one of the things i think has made domestic politics a little is that ie, too,
think trump has himself continue to move the ball and to do what he says as part of the negotiating sale in part of the up asis to ratchet it high as the cancer you can reach somewhere in the middle. that is not only about his negotiating partner, it is about us. as you noted, about a year ago, many folks in washington, myself were warng about the significant threat of military conflict. rhetoric,y hot comparisons of the size of nuclear buttons, talks of fire and fury. leaks were coming out about significant planning for conflict. that the ambassador
of south korea withdrew. creation a lot of the of the impression of what was inevitable. there was such a collective sigh of relief in so many quarters, we were not facing war or conflict, we were on a diplomatic track. what week -- what we saw yesterday is not what resembles real diplomacy or the negotiating process. not anything like what i saw when i was working in the bush or obama administrations, in terms of a real careful negotiating process. piecek the expectations has been something -- the terms have been set by the president, one way or the other. he certainly is going to be selling this as a success to his base. the reality is, 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 [indiscernible] is better than world war. i see right now does not indicate to me we have the framework for a meaningful negotiating process. one of my former bosses in government used to say, diplomat -- diplomacy is a sport. right now we have a one-man show . that is not sustainable and that is not diplomacy and that is not real negotiation. when it comes to the politics, we have to focus on what is realistic and how do we set the terms? and what are those terms really going to be, and how do we
continue to focus and drive for that? when we talk about military options, i am more concerned about military confrontation now reasons.re for two one is -- last year when we were talking about u.s. preventive strikes, i was not too concerned. when we used force we did not know if kim jong-un was crazy or rational. we had concerns if he used force against north korea, kim jong-un might go crazy and launch an all-out war. retaliation against south korea, or possibly japan and the united states. we could not take that option. but now, given the summit mr. xi with mr. moon and
and mr. trump, he has proved to be rational. he is a rational actor. think that even if we use force against north korea, necessary use of force against high-value targets, related to nuclear and missile development, north korea might go crazy and lash out. of militaryity action has increased, in my opinion. good news or bad news, i do not know. the last year, mr. trump was saying one thing, mr. kim was saying another. they were engaged in a battle of words, but they were really not engaged in talks or negotiation, but now they are engaged.
when they are engaged, we will see who is really winning and who is losing. if you are on the losing side, you have to do something about it, right? you have to take a tangible, real actioto change that situation. situation, they are talking about good news. generally speaking, i am more relieved, but on this point we have to be careful. that military option is still not off the table. >> i know you want to come in down the stretch. did chinese experts evaluate last fall the possibility of military action a very high, or did they think it was not likely? >> i am not sure there was a consensus. many were generally concerned about military conflict breaking out. that, i think, played an
important role in putting pressure on north korea. >> now what do you think? is oni said before, it the table, practically speaking. if they can get north korea committed to [indiscernible] if there is still no result in the technical negotiations, in -- if theerm future u.s. wants to start a war with north korea, i can imagine china, russia mobilizing military forces to signal deterrence to washington. it would take strong vision from south korea, as well. the you doo add,
have appointed point there is still a chance of military engagement, it is not off the table. i think president trump will want to maintain that on the though he is afraid of resorting to it in his press conference, when he was pushed to make remarks. that is not off the table completely. in a way, might be helpful in moving the denuclearization process forward. not in a way that is ideal, but realistically speaking, it is not all that bad. good and bad, we do not resort to it. president trump is somebody who go down thaty path. it is important to note president trump and chairman kim
jong-un still have rapport. they have begun a relationship. although that does not guarantee anything, it is meaningful. once you begin that relationship, and from what president trump has revealed, he seems quite happy with the start and confident he could move along. at least from the appearance on the media, even if it was staged, i think it was a cordial start. they can communicate along the way. longer than we want to, but we definitely have to work on it tenaciously.g up, i think, given the vested interest on both parties, president trump and kim jong-un,
although we will have to test it way to see if it is genuine about making tangible progress, i think we need to give it the benefit of the doubt because it is a start. changes on north korea's front, although we cannot be sure or confident 100%, there are changes. , it is surprising to see north korea revealing the reality as its, that it is, traditionally speaking, a north korean leader would have been ashamed to show its people they had to borrow a chinese airplane. coming out of a plane with the chinese flag on it, although it is their closest ally, as you has aned, north korea
strong distrust of a foreign countries, including its closest ally, cna. i think those things are not little things we should push aside. are some clues to what this new leader in north korea might be headed towards. as tom mentioned, he is playing a long game. he wants to retain his position dictator,ime, as a but he wants to improve his economy. for him to retain his position, grip on the people, he needs to show, demonstrate to the people, he is capable of not only developing nuclear weapons, but improving their livelihoods in ways 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. that is the reality. to relieve its paranoia it needs assurances from the u.s. to get that, i think north korea will be willing to make some concessions. in order for us to push that further along toward denuclearization, i think we need to give concessions and reciprocate with concessions, given it does mean progress. >> the holding out of military options as a fallback position, particularly as maximum pressure has dissipated, how concerned are you? i have always believed in the national security space, especially when dealing with an adversary like north korea. you never take that off the table. that is where i am always going to be.
that being said, i am less sanguine about the potential consequences of a military option. rational,ve kim is but i think your scenario puts more weight on command and control than i might become trouble with, than we have confidence in. i would not want to tested unless we were up against the wall with no other options, facing an imminent attack. one of thesaid, scenarios that does worry me is similar to one of the scenarios mishi was painting earlier in his four different versions. process beingis set up for implementation with pompeo and bolton and presumably a similar crew of experts working with them who had been
working through the meetings in advance to work out details. anen the gulf we have seen understanding on a few different things -- trump was asked in a press conference about the lack of verification in the agreement. he shuffled the papers around and said, no, it is here. it is all good, it is complete, we mean it. you get the point. it is all there. it is pretty clearly not there. probably i would presume for a reason. you can see where the negotiations, particularly with john bolton as part of them, could come up against pretty severe resistance. when you have already had a meeting at the summit level, you
frontloaded the peak option, you do not have a lot of runway after. if the talks breakdown and if you cannot come to agreement on the basic principles of a verifiable denuclearization regime, among everything else, than i do worry conflict will come back as one of the only options that remain. especially given the pressure. i really do not see how the pressure campaign can return. especially because i also think in that scenario kim jong-un could 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 backhina, russia and seoul on board, depending how things played out.
others would be in the know in the audience. these are things we have seen before. that does not mean it is bad to reaffirm then now. we are in a good place to do that. i think that makes this point of the implementation being what matters. the results being what matters. all the more important in my mind. segue to thegood last issue i wanted to touch on before we open it up to questions from the audience.
as you think about plan b, for if diplomacy falls apart, and other so you don't want conflict, what you're left with is the in between space. thatve written this report you can pick up copies outside that think a little bit i about what the deterrence picture might look like. i wanted to get your sense. a lot of our thinking in this report is based on the experience of the united states deciding with south korea to deploy the missile defense system in south korea and the china retaliated -- retaliating from that. you can see this future in front of you where the u.s. and south to ward against future north korean pot -- provocations my do additional things, more missile-defense or other actions. but then could elicit these spillover effects were china feels the need to retaliate. say a little bit about what drove the chinese considerations on that and looking forward, what are you most concerned about if additional deterrence
steps might be taken? tom: right. report, we expected a list of north korea's nuclear weapons would stay for the foreseeable future. koreathat the u.s.-south might continue deploying military capabilities to deter at allorea provocations levels, nuclear, conventional, etc., those military deployments would have original reactions from japan, from china. on how china might likely respond to such future u.s. and south korean military cooperation development. identify those
capabilities and those military postures that could generate the strongest chinese concern and reaction. feel free to read. one lesson that is particularly concerning is china came out of the dispute with south korea, china basically made the critical decision to move out. that dispute was not resolved, but simply shoved. the lesson by many chinese experts from these episodes was overin the next dispute another military deployment by the united states in this region
, but china perceives as threatening its interests, china probably should not start with soft economic assumptions. but probably should start with tit-for-tat military countermeasures. that are so threatening to the u.s. and south korea that it forces of the u.s. and south korea to come to china for serious negotiations. lesson that china has drawn from these episodes -- the chinese believe in coercive power. which means if there's going to be another dispute of another military deployment, we are likely to see stronger and more overwhelming response from china. that is very concerning. objectively speaking, china does have genuine disagreements about
those deployments. example, it shows how pre-existing political distrust between china and the united states. seriously biased chinese understanding about the technical capabilities of the system. that technical misunderstanding further contributed to even greater critical distrust. looking to the future, i think if future discriminant arise, -- disagreements arise, hopefully we have a chance to sit down to look at these underlying technical disagreements. probably not. it is better for us to start a day, to look and predict where are the areas that disagreements might arise? and be able to start a conversation now. in-depthe do need
discussions to address our genuine disagreements on those technical issues. that is the only way, i think, the occurrence of another major disagreement and maybe even serious conflict. looking to the future, i think we a facing an even more challenging situation. now, it looks like north korea is going to keep some of its nuclear weapons for the foreseeable future. the u.s. and south korea would continue developing strategies to deter north korea. but from the chinese perspective, this crisis already is our it is up -- already resolved. north korea is going to invest into its nuclear missile programs. focused onorea is
economic development. that page has been turned. now we should be engaging with north korea, and every thing would be fine. the misunderstandings between's china and north korea, it is even more divergent. it is even more challenging for china in the united states and south korea to agree on what is the adequate military capabilities to deter north korea? i think there is even greater challenge for china come united states, to work out their disagreements. it is an urgent issue. it will have serious applications for china-u.s. relationship. toby: i think that's right. the interest in political investment you are starting to see in the united states in augmenting our missile-defense systems are going to make this and theficult perception of how serious a
threat is north korea to the united states, two south korea, to japan, and the differences in a realerceptions are sailor -- a real serious challenge to finding ways to get to this point of a stable peace regime around the korean peninsa. words, that is not the ending of an era but a beginning of an era with north korea. it will generate serious challenges between the other players in this region. toby: thank you. i want to at this point bring in the audience for some discussion. we have two microphones in the might -- in the onions. when i point to you, the microphone will come. identify yourself and keep your question relativelyrief. that derailment back there first. -- that gentleman back there first. we will take two at a time. joshua, american university.
steps andking about things. after the trump administration's withdrawal from iran which was you are going to do this, we will remove sanctions, and that seemed to be the core, you can't have a step type of process. what is this process with korea going to look like if you have giving upveryone is their nuclear weapons but they want to get rid of sanctions, become part of the economic community. if the step method is not acceptable, what is the process? toby: catherine, the gentleman here. >> i'm going to go to a variation of the previous question. since trump walked away from the he felt it was not
adequate enough into some degree, i agree with him. i did not think it was apprriate to walk away from it however. since verification is one of the keyre -- one of the most important ingredients of agreement, what at the earlyy press conference about how this is better than the jcpoa? or will he simply do what he wants to do, lie about it? toby: that is a very pointed question. thank you. we have two questions. a process question and a verification and u.s. credibility question, is what i interpreted. do any of you want to take those up? laura: i will combine them if you don't mind.
i would start by saying number -- ii can't speak and can't speak for the administration and i decided long ago that deciding to try to predict what the president would do was a bit of a folly. not will nominate -- and engage in either. what i will tell you is number one, of course, iran's nuclear program was not anywhere close to the point at where north korea is today. in my mind, that makes it clear how much harder the challenge will be to get to anything that is not just jcpoa, but jcpoa plus essentially. two accounts for the weapons program. points they have reacd. number one. number two, i would say that i also certainly believe that any agreement with north korea has to include a very robust
verification regime. a verification regime that was in the jcpoa was the most robust we have ever seen in a nuclear agreement. and it is the kind of thing that would have been and should be, essentially, if you click -- if you include the weapons component, what we should have fired to for north korea. i also recall very clearly that the main precipitating factor that brought the end of the last major round of negotiations with the north koreans in did -- in the 2009 timeframe was inability to reach agreement on verification regime. i can tell you that what was on the table at that point comes nowhere close to what was in the jcpoa. that gap, whatse are the steps?
i don't know. -- if isee any other were advising, and i certainly believe there are experts who are trying to advise the trump administration's leadership, that a step process is really frankly the only way to do this. and that a robust verification regime is critical. and that the iran deal actually provides a model in many ways. if that fell short, i don't know. understanding the difference in where the programs are. the last piece i would add on it is acause it is -- application of a verification peace, is that we have not talked about the proliferation risk. chineseked about the view a north korean financial use of weapons, and that is not likely, and it is about regime survival.
i think that is largely true. we also know north korea has shown a willingness in the past to proliferate. i think that is something that has to be kept in mind when thinking about the returns and also about verification. that is not, in my mind, and in sick it -- insignificant risk. toby: if you want? >> if i can add a little bit on what are possible mate -- ways, i agree with laura that in essence, it has to be some kind of step-by-step. toward thathis phrase or concept, i think maybe be phrased as can a comprehensive deal -- for instance, the release of the u.s. citizens prior to the summit, voluntarily, at least from what was revealed to the media.
although there are questions that remain about the explode -- of the nuclear site, things like that. they are done theoretically voluntarily in advance. work onings, if we can getting ath korea reciprocal brooke ward, take showing a big, carrot ahead, i think that would enable the president -- the trump administration to say, we are not taking step-by-step's. they are doing this voluntarily. because of that, we are getting that. this may just be different packaging of it, but in essence, it has to be step-by-step. add, there isjust an optimistic reading of what has happened which is that they ofe committed to a regime
not provoking each other, whether it is through military exercises. one of the other details i came out in the press conference was me north korea -- was that north korea agreed to take down the stand. whether that is wh they are ready destroyed or another one, that is not clear. you can see the potential for framework around which you could then do more deeper negotiations. technical negotiations on what they would framework around which you could then declare, hu would verify it, what they would dismantle and so forth. i think that is an optimistic reading. you can see an argument there that that is different than the way it was done before. the joint statement in 2005 from the party and all these different working groups were desegregating things here. you have the peace process going forward. you have denuclearization on its own track. if president trump is going to claim success for this -- probably not on duke -- on
denuclearization but on a peace treaty on the korean peninsula, whether that has positive or negative effects on e prospects for denuclearization is an open question. i have here -- heard analyses both ways. i think you can make the argument that yes, it is not all at once. but it looks different. it feels different than what has been done before. generally speaking, there are three different elements. one is nuclear weapons. to address the issue of testing nuclear weapons, reduction onuclear weapons and stockpile of nuclear weapons. then there is the challenge already because we don't know how many nuclear weapons. we have in us -- an estimate. thehere is a gap between high-end figure and the low-end figure. when we talk about comprehensive dismantlement of nuclear weapons, we don't know how many they have to dismantle.
in terms of materials, we have to find out where those materials and whether or not we can achieve them safely inside south korea or we would like to move it out of north korea. terms of that, we have to talk about a freeze of the operation of facilities and dismantlement, which means we use the term dismantlement, which meant partial dismantlement of that. in 2007, it meant destruction of the tower. and then completed dismantlement. there, we have to find out the different elements and phrase these elements in the right order. it is very challenging. it is challenging in terms of this will be a very technical, highly complex process. and it -- there is a limit to
the engagements we have the engagements we have we don't know if there is any. so there are a lot of challenges going ahead. toby: this is where the oric has met the road, if you will. these too gentlemen and one more over here. we will do three this round. then i have more. this gentleman first. saying the u.s. is a driving force behind the president's negotiations. [indiscernible] what do we have? we have nuclear war in north korea and nuclear weapons. -- in the interest of the united states to keep it stable because it allows the military base, north korea and
prevents the implication of north korea to south korea compete with the united states. i'm wondering if these meetings between korean officials in have not worked out their own plans? and what is presented to trump is something that has been already done. and trump wants to go along with it because he cannot control [indiscernible] because he can't make a profit of the korean peninsula. toby: that his plan a of expelling the u.s. thank you for coming. this is good, quality conversations here.
that this is the first of money summits to come because -- the first of many summits to come because it is so complicated, it will take a long time. there has to be a lot more. nuclearlking to experts, so-called experts, i don't know if they are physicists, i don't know. but they are knowledgeable people. it wille saying , or eventake 10 years longer as you mentioned. that is a lot of years. there are steps to follow and so forth. my question is, i don't know if you are a nuclear physicist or not, can you comment on that? toby: thank you. last question over here. >> stephanie cook with nuclear intelligence weekly.
i wonder, given that came apparently views his situation as somewhat akin to the india program, or that his program is akin to the india program and he is a fully fledged member of the nuclear weapons club. actually getting any kind of denuclearization and/or declarations would not have to happen under some sort of existing multilateral scheme involving other nuclear weapons states, rather than a separate standalone deal with them, and if that was the case, what are the options? toby: good questions. who would like to take up? i am not a nuclear physicist. i know we have one on the panel. talk about the decades involved in verifying denuclearization, that would be welcomed. tong: there was his well-known -- this well-known study saying, if all things work well, it would take at least 15 years
to achieve denuclearization. and he was primarily looking at the physics side of the equation. need to looke also at the political side. i agree. i think kim jong-un was indicating that if there is no threat to north korea, north korea would have no reason to keep nuclear weapons. i think he was sincere when he said this. the only way to make north korea safe is for the u.s.-north korea relationship to get fundamentally transformed. om a htile one to a friendly one. just like the u.s.-be a non-relationship transformed from a hostile want with friendship one. in the u.s.-vietnam case, that took more than 40 years. that process was accelerated by the third actor factor, china. which emerged as a common concern to both vietnam come in
the united states, and therefore joined the two countries closer. predict how long the u.s.-north korea could fundamentally transform. even 15 years estimation is simply too optimistic. and that is why i think kim jong-un did not commit to any specific timetable or deadline to achieve denuclearization. because he can't. toby: i think that is an interesting point. the time is also a function of confidence too. with what level of confidence do you want to say that you have achieved x, y, or z? in a country like north korea that is opaque, that is a very difficult intelligen target, it is impossible to have 100% confidence on almost every aspect of the nuclear program. we can get close to it in some, but another's, we will be far
apart. we have to assess the political risk associated with lower levels of confidence and what we think we know about the program. that relates to how long is it going to take to develop a u.s.-north korea friendly relationship like with vietnam? narushige: when we talk about the period of time it takes for dismantlement or denuclearization, we have to take a look at both the technical aspect of it and part of it. at the end of the day, we need to create when north korea can live without nuclear weapons. take south korea for example. it took about almost three untils from the 1960's, the end of the 1980's for south a relativelyme
poor country to an affluent country. more thanake probably that. the question is, can we politically say, we will have to wait 30 years to see cote denuclearization? it would be very difficult. i think realistically, we have to set stages. in the first stage, we have to look atyears, take a what we can do, and then extend the stages. in the meantime, we will help north korea. framework, the agreed of the u.s. and north korea signed in 1994, the target period of 10 years. it was too short. toby: can i get you to take on -- is there a secret plan for the u.s. to expel the question?
soojin: i don't know if there is one. if i can pick up from what has been discussed is that it is so true that denuclearization is not just about the physical aspects -- physics aspects, but very much political aspect. i think it is important to take that into account. that regard, to resolve this problem, i think we need to remember that political aspect and investigating that is having the peace treaty to replace that. technically, we are still at war. the two koreas are still at work. that is what makes north korea so insecure. way to weeed toin address this issue. i think those are some of the
things we need to work on and to ndem with the physical denuclearization of the political aspects to build more idence and also, another thing i wanted to bring up is that although we will have to see if the thinking remains with this current leader, kim jong-un, because during the previous dialogues, summit, kim jong-il addressed to kim jae moon that if the security issues be resolved, north korea would not be against the u.s. troops on the korean peninsula. for one, it wants to have more stabilizing factors against south korea should it provoke north korea.
the stabilizing force in the region. northeast asia. consciousey are very of china's presence. this is very, very far-fetched. well in thes go long run, and if north korea indeed confirms it, it is something that is plausible. i think -- i don't think, at least from south korea's perspective, there is any plan to drive the u.s. out of the peninsula. in fact, should we have peace a more stablee situation with the change of u.s. troops role and status, maybe size, i think the majority of the people, possibly even with north koreans, would like to have a u.s. presence. laura: i will just briefly add, as i mentioned earlier, i think
kim jong-un is driving this process. to broaden that, i think he is choreographing this dance. he sees the role of the different players any as deciding on what terms and when to engage with them. whether there is a broader plan that has been cooked up among them, i had not conceived of that before. belielittle hesitant to that there is a sophisticated enough operation to those -- to lay that out. what i think is clear is that to earlier,ed beijing has an interest in the scaling back of u.s. exercises. also u.s. troops on the peninsula. dynamic toregional many of those questions and kim jong-un is certainly aware of
how to play those strengths. analogy, many of us who sat across the table are familiar with them raising the india or pakistan model that they have explored or thought about. earlier about, why are we at this point? i think many of us were not surprised to see him make that pivoted and negotiating posture. thing that surprised me is i expected that turn to occur by saying we are in a nuclear state and we will engage only if you recognize us. it will be for the purpose of disarmament talks.
if that were the case that would open up the type of questions you are asking about. that kimnteresting is theput denuclearization in vaguest possible terms, not e ven really committing to it firmly. is that because he has the sense -- i think that is what we have seen here. onthe legitimacy path he is -- at some point the other shoe may drop, we will only get into these talks if it is multilateral where we belong at the table.
there was one last question all the way at the back and we will wrap it up. if you can wait for the microphoo come to you. is to laura and it involves congress which we have not discussed. and there was some early talk about making sure congress is consulted and perhaps some sort of final deal makes its way to congre. if i am kim jong-un looking at the a ron deal i am trying my best to figure out how we find something that is going to live -- if you are playing the long two that could live beyond years of t presidency. i would love to get your thoughts on how you engage and is there any continuity that we will see beyond trump
administration? you won't be surprised to know i come to some of these questions with a strong executive branch bias. not trying to carry out u.s. government foreign policy. certainly congress prayed -- plays an important role in many different scenarios. many of us feel a queer in a different world at the moment. so maybe principals deserve a little bit of pending us. what i see as a couple of things. . one is that there are a number of different scenarios. congress has taken a very strong and forward leaning stand on sanctions.
there is a significant role that congss could panic -- play in passinlegislation that says you cannot lift sanctions unless we agree to the terms of the lifting which is kind of what happened. you could see a scenario in which congress has passed including last summer and one of the only pieces of legislation that has passed this congress and the most bipartisan one to pass this date included the trade sanctions. there's definitelyfor talking about that. another place where you could see a congressional role is on the question of military conflict. it has come up a couple of times, with the executive branch need authorization for the use of military force?
there were some arguments being included by the press that somehow they thought they had under articlerity two. i'm not a lawyer but i know a lot of lawyers were looking side i at that. -- question is one, but i think that is fraught. an iraq end up with scenario. . to me itthing is ultimately depends on what is on the table as an agreement. e are scenario where something could be pulled up where it should be treated as a treaty. particularly if it does deal with some sign of significant weapons component. you can envision a reason to have some kind of actual treaty
that is formally binding which would include a congressional role but this is where my executive branch bias comes into play and i would like to see the threshold with which that particular agreement would reach before feeling like this should take the form of a treaty. >> we will wrap up very quickly and dare i suggest that you each give me a 10 second forecast. january 1, 2019. are we still negotiating? are we in deterrent is it back to fire and fury? >> north korea will be still negotiating. maybe even stopping the production of these materials. the relationship might continue
to improve. i don't feel we will go back to the fire and fury. >> i would give 35% of the first scenario. and fivee second, 35 to the last scenario. >> i know it is widely used and jaded but i would like to remain cautiously optimistic. it is the first step of a long road and it is encouraging that president trump has a knowledge effect that it will not be resolved overnight and that it will be a process. in mind, with budding
rapport and confidence building hopefully things will go in the right direction. playing rope are dope. the north koreans if they are pulling out -- kim jong-un is different than his father and grandfather. but they have always been very good at creating entrapment scenarios and using them as leverage. we are probably in that scenario. whether it leads to something or not is an open question. >> thank you to all of you for coming. go support the washington capitals.
>> tonight on q&a, a discussion on the documentary "hit and stay: a history of faith and resistance," about the actions of the catonsville nine and other catholic activists that protested the vietnam war. antiwar movement was often thought of as scruffy, college-age protesters. here, middle-aged clergy.
the public thought maybe i should reconsider this myself, that was a turning point for the antiwar movement. their action did not and the vietnam war, but i do not see how you can argue that it did not help and the draft. of reflective service said publicly they felt they were under attack, so i think clearly, you can draw a line from what they did to the draft ng in 1973. tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span's q&a. afterwards, bill press talks about his book "from the left, a life in the crossfire." mosto was one of the persuasive guests you can -- >> john mccain. >> on what subject? >> just about anything. he was a bit of a maverick, and
he was also really honest. he was willing to take on his own party. i take it -- i wrote a book critical about back obama, which i got a lot of flack for from my fellow democrats, but there are some places where i believe barack obama let the progressive side down. party wasn filled his not living up to what he thought the republican party should be, and was willing to say so. >> watch afterwards at 9:00 eastern on c-span twos book tv. on thursday, fbi director christopher wray held a press fbi'sence on the inspector general report related to the hillary clinton email investigation and the 20 team presidential campaign. of the stepsome his organization was taking to follow the report's recommendations. this is 20 minutes.