Sign in to comment!

Menu
Home

Former Secretary of State Haig and Gov. Bill Richardson on North Korean Missile Crisis

This is a partial transcript from "On the Record," July 5, 2006, that has been edited for clarity.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, HOST: Why is North Korea doing this and why now? We're joined live from West Palm Beach by former secretary of state General Alexander Haig. Welcome sir and why now?

GEN. ALEXANDER HAIG, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: Good to be with you, Greta. Now, Greta, this is a culmination of a long period of stalemate and offer and turn down and offer and turn down. It's not an unusual thing. Although, I think if they had to do it over again, they may have rescheduled it until they were a little better prepared. Because this arrogant action on their part has unified the six, the regional groupings to include I think to a greater degree than here before, the Peoples' Republic of China. But we'll have to see that in the days ahead.

It has also generated unanimity in the Security Council, where they are calling today for prompt and meaningful actions against the north. So, all of these things are victories. Beyond that, the long range missile turned out to be a flop. That can't be something that the leadership had in mind.

VAN SUSTEREN: General, we're reporting tonight, or at least the Associated Press rather is reporting that three or four more small and mid range missiles may be on the launch pad. Now, obviously, the long range one failed. It was a flop. What do you make of the fact that at least the report that there may be more of these shorter range missiles on the launch pad ready to be tested?

HAIG: Not very much more than what the earlier ones suggest. They're trying to portray a picture of a multitude of capabilities. In other words, they're trying to create a deterrent to dominate and to deal on equal terms with the United States. I think the president has wisely refused to do that despite the pressure from the opposition party here in the United States. And so, what he has really done has brought together more closely and in a more coordinated fashion, the regional powers that are primarily responsible and affected by these events.

VAN SUSTEREN: General Haig, thank you sir.

Coming up, what's it like inside this secretive country? Governor Bill Richardson has been inside North Korea five times. He's seen one of the nuclear reactors with his own eyes. Governor Bill Richardson is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VAN SUSTEREN: This is a FOX NEWS alert: FOX NEWS has just confirmed that North Korea does indeed have at least three more short range missiles on the launch pad. Stay tuned to FOX NEWS for all of the latest news on this developing situation.

And now we're joined live by New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson who has been inside this secretive country. Welcome, governor.

GOV. BILL RICHARDSON, D-N.M.: Thank you Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: Governor you've been there five times. What's it like?

RICHARDSON: It's surreal. It's out of the 50s. It's isolated. They, North Koreans get no news except whatever the dear leader Kim Jong-Il determines, three hours a day. Extreme poverty. Extreme, hardly any vehicles on the roads. People walk around looking desolate. But at the same time, Kim Jong-Il has an iron grip. It's a deity, it's a cult of personality. His pictures are everywhere.

But when you negotiate with the North Koreans and I was there in October, not as an official envoy but trying to get them to the six-party talks. They don't negotiate like we do. We give and take. They do the opposite. Their view is, they should take everything and it's just a matter of time before you agree to their position. That's how they think. They're saber rattling right now. They're trying to get attention, which they think that they have not gotten in the last two months. They like to be on center stage and apparently they have succeeded.

VAN SUSTEREN: Is he humiliated by the fact this sort of performance, I mean the long range missile was, at least in my view and in the view of everyone else I seem to hear about, a flop. And they now have three or four missiles on the launch pad. What's the purpose of this at this point?

RICHARDSON: Well, I believe it has been a setback. And Kim Jong-Il recognizes that the firing of the long range missile didn't work, so he's trying to make up for it by showing force with medium and short range missiles and continuing saber rattling. So, obviously, the failure of that launch has affected them. Nonetheless, he's still totally unpredictable. It's still a very tense situation. But I think the Bush administration has played it right. They shouldn't panic, they should be steady. But the first thing I would do, Greta, is send our very capable assistant secretary, Chris Hill, who is in Beijing right now, to talk directly to the North Koreans to set up the next round of six-party talks.

I believe that a little nuance like direct talks, even though they're not substantive, would get the North Koreans back to a negotiating table where I believe a deal is in the making. A deal that in exchange for North Korea killing their nuclear weapons, destroying them, they would get an agreement not to be attacked, they would get fuel, energy assistance, rice. I think that deal has been in the works for about six months. But the administration has to be steady, continuous diplomacy. It has to be continuous diplomacy. And Assistant Secretary Hill, they like him, he's effective. The president ought to let him just go talk to him to set up the next round of talks. I think that would be a major step in the right direction.

VAN SUSTEREN: Governor Richardson, thank you sir.

Content and Programming Copyright 2006 FOX News Network, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Transcription Copyright 2006 Voxant, Inc. (www.voxant.com), which takes sole responsibility for the accuracy of the transcription. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. No license is granted to the user of this material except for the user's personal or internal use and, in such case, only one copy may be printed, nor shall user use any material for commercial purposes or in any fashion that may infringe upon FOX News Network, LLC'S and Voxant, Inc.'s copyrights or other proprietary rights or interests in the material. This is not a legal transcript for purposes of litigation.