This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," June 3, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
JENNIFER GRIFFIN, FOX NEWS GUEST HOST: The countdown is on. It's dawn in Cairo, Egypt, where in just a few hours, President Obama gives his much anticipated speech to the Muslim world. Former secretary of state Dr. Henry Kissinger is with me live here in Washington. Thank you for joining me.
HENRY KISSINGER, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: Good to be here.
GRIFFIN: First of all, what should or shouldn't the president say in this speech in Cairo?
KISSINGER: Well, I am not going to make a checklist against which you -- you -- one can then measure it. He put (ph) himself a formidable task, to travel, what, 8,000 miles to give a speech in a very tense area of the world. So passions are great on all sides. So to give a speech that really changes the game is very hard. It's almost impossible. I'd say that at the beginning, so -- and I think it shows a lot of courage to try to convey America's interests and America's commitment. And that's really the most effective thing he can do.
GRIFFIN: Do you think he'll talk about democracy and that democracy is the goal, or is it back to stability?
KISSINGER: Well, you know, I don't like this distinction between democracy and stability. We should not pretend that it is up to us how countries become democratic. There are 150 countries in the world, and for the American president to run around to every country, lecturing them about operational democracy could also be considered somewhat arrogant.
We -- where did we -- I know that phrase, that we picked stability over democracy, but where exactly did we have the choice between democracy and stability? And you've lived in the Middle East. How easy would it be, and how -- is it not more likely that if we create a lot of turmoil, that the Muslim Brotherhood will become the government, rather than a neat (ph) democratic country?
We can stand for human rights. We can express our views. But to go into a country and give them a lecture that, in effect, means, "Overthrow your government," that's not a role of the president.
GRIFFIN: Well, it's interesting that you mention the Muslim Brotherhood because I understand that organizers of the speech decided that they would -- in a nod to the opposition, which they are considering Muslim Brotherhood opposition, they're going to give some seats to the Muslim Brotherhood in the speech that President Obama is giving. Do you think that's a mistake?
KISSINGER: No, I don't know. I can't touch (ph) that one. I -- the Muslim Brotherhood is not a democratic organization. They believe they are an Islamist organization that therefore believes there is only one truth, and that's reflected in the Quran. So I would not choose them as the road to democracy. Nor do I believe our administration would.
GRIFFIN: But it will also anger the -- President Mubarak and the government if you have the Muslim -- if you're giving invitations...
KISSINGER: Oh, you mean our organizers of the speech did it?
GRIFFIN: Yes. They agreed to it. Let's talk about Israel for a second. Do you think that President Obama, in terms of what you've heard him say so far, is on a collision course with Israel? And how unusual is its for a U.S. president to go to Egypt, to Cairo, and not visit Israel at the same time?
KISSINGER: Well, President Obama has been more insistent on certain American views than his predecessor, some other presidents, especially on the issue of settlements. So from that point of view, relations have a different character.
On the other hand, it is appropriate for the president and important for the president to state an American position and to act as mediator between the two sides, which means that neither side will be fully satisfied and each side will be somewhat dissatisfied. So the question is, can one balance the satisfactions and dissatisfactions?
GRIFFIN: OK. Thank you, Dr. Kissinger.
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