Freed Afghan detainees pose new threat to national security

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," February 11, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: A new and very real threat to our national security, Afghanistan announcing they will release 65 detainees. Prisoners, the U.S. says, have American blood on their hands. Joining us is first U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security and a former Pennsylvania governor, Tom Ridge. Nice to see you, governor.



RIDGE: Pretty outrageous, isn't it.

VAN SUSTEREN: Yeah, I was going to ask you how bad it is.

RIDGE: Well, it's pretty outrageous. I mean, first of all this is a man -- Karzai is on his way out the door and so his gratuitous, I think, insulting remarks, vis-a-vis America are just highly objectionable and outrageous, but the more importantly, this notion that the military, not just the U.S., the U.S., NATO and his own security forces are responsible for putting most of these people in there. They say they have evidence that says they have either killed members of U.S. military NATO or they are responsible for killing Afghan soldiers and/or civilians and you are going to release them extra judicial. This commission you formed says there is not enough evidence in spite of the fact that our military says clearly these 65, there is plenty to keep them there.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well -- I mean, Karzai, President Karzai has always been very difficult for the United States to deal with.

RIDGE: Yes, he has.

VAN SUSTEREN: Very difficult. But - but he now he has really gone rogue on us.

RIDGE: Well, he has going on rogue for quite some time.

VAN SUSTEREN: What are we doing to try to at least reign him in? Apparently, not much.

RIDGE: Well, I don't think we can do much. He is on his way out the door. I mean, the election is in April. And with - with what bothers me more than anything else is that frankly we shouldn't be surprised if his conduct -- that there hasn't been any public -- public challenge to any of his anti-American statements for the past couple years from anybody.

VAN SUSTEREN: What would you expect to be done?

RIDGE: Well, I certainly would loved to have been with Secretary Clinton or Secretary Kerry to take him basically to the wood shed and say listen you dishonored the two thousand plus men and women that have died here and a thousand more that have been injured. You dishonored America that has basically bank rolled you, provide you security. We are digging wells, we're building schools, we're responsible for roads and yet these gratuitous anti-American remarks - are not disserving you and more importantly, then you -- your countrymen. We are war weary, but we want to keep people there. This whole bilateral status agreement we want to keep our troops there. It's in our interest, but it's also in his interest. And yet, he is creating environment where Americans are saying you know maybe we ought to just get out. That's not in our long-term best interest by the way but a lot Americans are beginning to feel that.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. The ones that are being released already have blood on their hands?

RIDGE: Absolutely.

VAN SUSTEREN: But what - what apparently is being said though is that they going be released and go out and do more. I mean, there is that aspect, too.

RIDGE: Well, I think that's true. I think they've released - you know, we had hundreds, maybe thousands in Bagram from time to time and they have been released periodically. The fact of the matter is we find them back on the battlefield fighting us, NATO and their own security forces. And the fact is in 65.

VAN SUSTEREN: Will they come here?

RIDGE: Well, you know, one of the things that we worry about whether it's in Afghanistan or in Syria, or elsewhere, is that Secretary Johnson said the other day, you start providing a safe haven, whether it's for Al Qaeda or Taliban or those related groups, you train them, you proselytize you equip them, it's a global scourge. And there's no saying that they won't -- we won't find them attacking American interests in that part of the world or potentially, in the United States.

VAN SUSTEREN: Governor, always nice to see you, sir.

RIDGE: Thank you, my pleasure.