decided we had better get our version of what happened and that is why the book was written. >> we will come back and talk to clinton and dole who was part of president kennedy at the tail. share with us one of your more stark memories of the nonresident kennedy have detail. >> i was there at the time of the assassination. ..
>> i help from the story, but the story together, interviewed agents, and get very involved in the project. it has been a privilege and honor to work with these great men. >> and what was probably the most interesting thing for you input in this project together? >> the most interesting thing was it is hard to believe that all of these agents who witnessed the assassination of president kennedy never spoke about it, never talked to each other about the assassination, never talked to their wives or children. they have held it inside for 47 years, and it was not until jerry bland decided to write this book that he got the agents talking together about the assassination. the healing has really begun.
>> thank you very much for your time. >> what i would like to talk to you about this afternoon, as walter says very briefly, is a catastrophe, a catastrophe in which 14 million people, chiefly children and women back at the -- and the aged were killed over the space of just 12 years by two regimes, the nazi german ree and the stalinist regime in the soviet union. this total figure of 14 million is in itself, i think, astonishing. it is a number which is too large to grasp. i will return to what that means and how we might try to grasp it, but it is also a number of which tells us something very special about these two regions.
we now know by or at least have a pretty good certainty about the total number of people killed by these two regions. it was about 17 million. of the 17 million, about 14 million were killed in a place that i'm calling bland's. that is to say not so much pressure, not so much germany, but the land between berlin and moscow, the western rim of russia, the baltic states, belarus, ukraine, and most of poland's third. what this means is that of all the killing that took place organized by both hitler and stalin from the atlantic to the pacific the tremendous majority of this mass murder was concentrated in this relatively small territory. >> next, charles kupchan looks at how nations escaped geopolitical persecution purity
argues about diplomacy, not economic dark it is pizza than the event hosted by the naval counsel on world affairs in naples, florida. this is just over an hour. >> if you pick up a newspaper, whenever newspaper, on most days of the week you will find at least one, at least two stories about pork. these days probably iraq and/or afghanistan will make it onto the front page, if not both of those may be human or somali or some other rivalry, india, pakistan, china, japan. you name it and it will be on the front page. i think it is safe to say that if you pick up a paper to mark a
more debate the headline is not going to be all quiet on the u.s.-canadian border. if you pick up a newspaper in paris it is not going to be all quiet on the franco-german boundary. it is self evident why that is the case. is peace breaks out nothing happens. when war breaks out a lot happens. there is noise, emotion, color. everybody sends cameras and journalists. so to some extend it is reasonable that we pay a lot of attention to war and little attention to peace. obviously people go see movies, spend $11.50 or whatever it is these days to see a movie about world war ii, but your not going to pay $11.50 to see a movie today about the franco-german
relationship. all you see if you have a camera at the border are some sheep grazing. that is because that border is long a set of bloodshed had has lost its relevance as a geopolitical boundaries. if we did in our cars tonight at 830 or quarter to nine whenever riyadh and and we all head north and a big convoy in the to the u.s.-canadian border we will find a few customs agents and pt controls, but you will not find the 802nd dearborn. he will not find an armored division. he will not find canadian soldiers on the other side. why? because canadians do not lay awake at night thinking that we are about to invade. we don't lie awake at night thinking that they are going to invade. why is that?
in some ways it is a much more profound observation than the fact that the taliban are fighting. the americans are going after the tall band. that is what happens since the beginning of time. and so what i want to discuss with you tonight is the other stuff, the magical all too rare moments in international history when peace breaks out, and nothing happens, countries become so comfortable with each other that they demilitarize their relationship. they keep their borders undefended. they let down their guard. they eliminated or as a legitimate tool of statecraft. so i would like to do three things in the next 30 minutes. one is tell you how i went about examining this puzzle, how and when peace breaks out, how the
store and found. second, highlight for you what i think the most important conclusions of the study are. what did i find that you would want to take away tonight and ruminate about? it may affect the way that you think about the world of diplomacy. and then i want an end by saying a few things about president obama and his engagement strategy because his readiness to talk to the enemy was in some ways one of the most distinguishing features of his presidential campaign and also of his time as president. reset with russia, reaching out to cuba, trying to negotiate with ron, trying to reach out to syria. this is an unusual form policy. a lot to offer some thoughts on how that every test on and where it is likely to head in the months ahead. so, for starters in trying to
answer this question when and why peace breaks out i went back and just wait widely through history where longstanding rivals found their way to peace. they moved from india to amity. the earliest case i looked at is the foundation of switzerland in 1291 when three in what is today the alpine region, along enemies of its other forms when it became the swiss confederation. i look at the formation of the iroquois confederacy in upstate new york which was born in 1450 in the small town that still exists today. these five tribes came together. they had been killing each other and eating each of the literally for centuries. from 1450-1777 not a single iroquois tribe man died in
battle with another iroquois. a look at the concert of europe, 1815-1853, a system that preserved peace among the great powers and on up to the present day and cases from latin america, the middle east, southeast asia, northeast asia, spread the net as widely as possible to get different cultures at different times, some states, not some non state actors trying to figure out how these magical moments of peace occur. the me tell you what i found. i'm going to tell you what i found by telling you the story of one particular case. that is the case of the united states and great britain. a case which today we take for granted. the idea that somehow the u.s. and great britain were enemies, we have forgotten because the were partners in world war one, partners in world war ii. now we talk about the special
relationship. but from 1700's when we broke away from the british empire through the war of 1812 when the british kindly burned down the white house to the balance of the 19th century britain was in a number one. in the u.k. the america was in a number one. we kept battleships. we did that have any at the time, but we kept cruisers at the ready, trips on the u.s.-canadian border. we almost went to war on numerous occasions in the 19th century. everything starts to change in 1895. the precipitating event is a dispute that breaks out between british guiana and venezuela over their border. you may say kamala to is that have to do with anglo-american relations? well, the united states -- and keep in mind in the 1890's the u.s. is calling on line as a
great power selling its vote, believing it should have of say in the world commensurate with the growing economic power. the president dispatches a note to london which says this dispute between british guiana and venezuela is in the western hemisphere. it is in our backyard. we believe we should have a role. we recommend that you take this neutral arbitration. the results very discusses this with his cabinet, sees it as an affront to the pride of the british empire and dispatches a note back to washington that basically says forget about it. at this point there is talk of war in congress of. there is a sense that the united states has been ashamed, embarrassed. there is talk of the british empire continuing to tread where it should not be trespassing on
american interests. and once talked of war is swirling in washington the british cabinet reconvenes. lord salisbury calls and the admiralty, royal navy and says what we do? are you ready to go to war against the united states? the embassy goes away and looks at the disposition of forces and seas are rising america, a rising germany, rising japan. the company in south africa. they go back to lord salisbury and say, we can do this. there is no way that we can go to war with the united states because we don't have enough battleships. we can only do this by exposing our positions in the north sea committed to rent income and the far east. we can do it. the admiralty therefore says to lure salisbury, yes, you can.
fight them. turn them into a friend. words of barry said, this is a very interesting idea. he wrote a note to president cleveland. he goes back to washington. this man says, we every talked this issue and decided that you are right. we will take this to neutral arbitration. arthur belfour, a leader and house of commons gives a speech soon thereafter in which he says the united states has legitimately articulated in monroe doctrine for hegemony in the western hemisphere. we believe and recognize the legitimacy of that kind. of course the americans don't know what is going on. their archenemy is backing down on a dispute in telling them that they are the hegemon of the western hemisphere. what happened is that the american government correctly interpreted with the british
were doing. engaging the enemy, attempting to turn a relationship of an knee into a relationship of enemy. because washington understood what was being said they reciprocated. between 1896 and 1898 the british and americans traded and dialogue, this course, confessions over fishing rights in the barents sea, the border between alaska and canada, america's right to build a fortified the panama canal which they were forbidden from doing by a treaty with the british spirit a british said gil ahead. build it. fortify it. in 1898 when the assets attacked cuba kicking the spanish out, colonize to why, colonize the philippines, the british stood up and said hurray. the only great power and the world to welcome america's arrival as a serious player.
at that point the game switches from the realm of high politics, the ram of diplomat, a round of secret cables. i will come back to this and the second. was deliberately secret because the american government and british government were afraid that if they let out to the public of they were making nice to the enemy the opposition would come after them. they had to do this quietly. after 1898 when there is an outpouring of british support wall known to americans for the arrival in the pacific, then society start to get engaged. travel picks up. there are novels, magazines, the atlantic monthly, cecil rhodes, the rhodes scholarship to notre the next generation of anglo-saxon leaders. the anglo american chamber of commerce. they hold dinners, regular dinners and london and new york.
they start every dinner by singing the star spangled banner and god save the queen. the bay five the british flag and american flags side by side. this kind of deeper societal engagement deepens the roots of a the diplomat between 1895 and 1898. and then the final stage of the process is a change in the dialogue, a change in the discourse, a change in the way the leaders talked about the other. easy teddy roosevelt to by this time was president calling war between britain and the united states a civil war. british counterpart similarly refer to war between the united states and great ridden as fratricide. kamala war within the family. in fact, change in language, the sense that the british and americans are up and not down,
you really begin to see a stable peace settlement. in 1902 britain removes the united states from the two power standard which is the standard that they used to size the royal navy. in 1906 the last contingent of british regulars leave the canadian border never to return. the u.s.-canada border was essentially demilitarized from that time on. so that story and initial bold gambit, wrapping of knuckles on the window to get the other side to pay attention to your willingness to move the relationship from conflicts to corporation, a time of dialogue and putting your problems on the table and discussing them, society's getting involved after that, and this change in this course, that is the basic story that i found more less through all of the different 20
historical cases that i looked at. let me now touch on the second set of issues. that is what are some of the broader lessons and store. what do i hope that you will chew over after years of left to. [speaking in native tongue] the first is in the big debate that takes place among scholars and among politicians about whether engagement is appeasement or whether engagement is good diplomacy, i found that engagement in most cases is good diplomacy. there are some enemies with whom one should not engage. those are enemies that you know to have maximalist ideological convictions that make their willingness to compromise with
you out of the question. was chamberlain tried to appease hitler in 1938? no. why? because said there had demonstrated year after year after year that he had a predatory ambition these of the his neighbors, these of the jews. he is not someone with him one it should say this is a person with him i think i can do business. should the united states engage a qaeda today? no. why? because they have made crystal clear that they have a set of extremists goals and what to do less harm. those are generally the extremes. that is the hard case. and most other cases engagement has at least a chance of working. that does not mean it always works. that does not mean that if we talk to russia or a wrong or cuba or syria or burma or china that they will reciprocate.
my findings do suggest that longstanding rivalries come to an end when the two sides engage each other, but their dispute on the table and negotiate and not when one side coerces the other side into submission. second, if there is a potion, a magic elixir, an ingredient that keeps reappearing through all of these cases it is the practice of restraint, the willingness of the parties in question to give ground, to take two steps back, to tie at hand behind the back, to withhold power. and this can take many different forms. in the case of the british it was backing down over the border between british guiana and venezuela. in the case of norway and sweden it was a willingness by both parties to dismantle forts on
their frontier. in the case of brazil and argentina it was a willingness to cooperate on the nuclear technology that both are beginning to develop. in the case of indonesia and malaysia indonesia backed away from the policy of challenging the formation of the malaysian federation. so restrained takes different forms, but it is important to send a signal of benign intent, that you mean that other party no harm. another very interesting practice that i found, and this is more for groupings of countries and pairs of countries. deconcentrating power. for example, one of the magical maneuvers that helps the united states consolidate as is out of peace was putting the capital in the swamp, a location that i suffer from as a resident of washington d.c.
why do i live in washington d.c.? because it is the capitol and because it is the only place that northerners and southerners could agree. it might have been in philly. it might have been boston. it might be new york, maybe princeton, but it had to be somewhere in between north and south, nor commercial or urban. what does europe had its capital split between russell, strasbourg, and luxembourg? same reason. why does switzerland have two capitals for many, many centuries? the product to stop protestants and catholics could not agree whether the capitol should be in the protestant section of the catholic section. each got one. the catholics could not agree on whether it should be the city or the city. moved. you have two capitals moving around. it worked because nobody was
afraid that a stable permanent capital would create a balance and power that would threaten. again, strategic restraint, was holding power. there take away, and this is surprising or at least it surprised me going in. regime types, democracy does not seem to matter. i went into the project thinking i would find that liberal democracies were great partners, good at making peace. that is partly because we are led to believe by our politicians and scholars that a democracies are pacific and autocracies are were light. i found autocracies can be reliable partners. the concert of europe was divided between a liberalizing britain and france and an autocratic russian-prussia austria. they got along swimmingly. when britain -- excuse me, brazil and argentina in 1979
both countries were ruled by military. when indonesia made peace with malaysia it was governed by general siddhartha, one of the great thugs of the 20th century. a peacemaker when it came to southeast asia. and so i think we make the mistake when we look out at the world and choose our enemies and friends but solely on the basis of whether they are democracies. autocracies, we may want to lecture, harangue, until the chinese to let the prisoners go, but i have found that when it comes to making peace democracies and autocracies can get along just fine but. we should not make the mistake of turning our backs on relationships that might make the world a safer place just because we don't like the flavor of their government. but by third point -- fourth point, a surprise to me because
we are led to believe that economic engagement, the lubrication for good diplomatic relations. i found that it is about diplomacy. did it is the policy. it is not the economics. in only one of the 20 cases a look that did economic integration clear the way for political reconciliation, and that was germany in the 19th century. in all the other cases political reconciliation clear the way for economic integration bonds. in the absence of the political reconciliation we can trade, invest until we are blue in the face, but it is not going to have geopolitical consequences unless the politics of right. we can give money to serve and tell them to have joint ventures. it will build peace in the baltic. we can give seed money to palestinians and israelis to have dairy farms together, but
if they disagree over borders and disagree over jerusalem they will not be peace. politics first and then the trade seals the deal. a final observation, and this will lead me into the closing comments about obama. making peace with an enemy is as difficult domestically as it is diplomatically because whenever a leader reaches out to an adversary there are always components of combat ready to unsheathe the sharp knife and, after those to talk to the enemy. in the case is that i have found
, china and the soviet union, san miguel, syria and egypt, it almost always failed because of domestic opponents of tom who undermined the effort by diplomats and leaders to bring off diplomatic. and that means that as the diplomacy of proceeds leaders have to be very careful to make sure that they have the domestic support at home. otherwise you may get mr. a and b striking a deal, but as an as they are gone there is no domestic constituency to keep the peace, the french ship moving forward. let me conclude by saying a few things about obama engagement and where we go from here. first, as you might guess, as
someone who is submitted in favor of engagements i support obama's readiness to reach out. i support his readiness to negotiate with russia. i support is ready is even to talk to iran despite the fact that regime is about as odious as it gets. that is because, as i said, when peace breaks out it usually does so because the parties come together and find their way out of the impasse, not because one side forces the other to back down through coercion. i think obama is right to try to set aside for now questions of democracy and not democracy and take a more pragmatic approach. if russia is ready to help on afghanistan, nuclear arms control, conventional arms control we should work with them
despite the fact that we don't like the way that they govern. the second observation is that i think that obama has generally done a good jobs with this strategy. that is to say, it is done incrementally. he has made the first move, and now he waits for others to reciprocate. who worked with russia. the russians are playing ball. it worked a little bit with cuba there has been little liberalization, some political prisoners have been let go. it would be nice to see more. it has not worked at all with the wrong. that is why artiga bama is correct to say that the ball is now and tehran's court. let's see if they are willing to reciprocate the gestures of good will that have been put on the table. there are two aspects were i think obama has been less than successful and his strategy.
one is he has too much on his plate, too many balls in the year. he has not done a good enough job of deciding where he wants to put his efforts, spreading himself too thin. i think that is better now than it was during the first your command he has begun to realize that the low hanging fruit is russia and russia, if that works, if russia anchors itself in the atlantic community that will be a win for its strategy of engagement and will give him wind in the sales. the other, i think, and started off to intellectual and not political enough giving speeches to russians and iranians and egyptians and only more recently has he begun to realize that politics is 30. politics requires getting in the trenches. politics requires working the phones and cutting deals.
but in his diplomacy has become more realistic in the second year in the first, but nonetheless a bit too intellectual and idealistic and not enough hard-core politics. final point, as i said, policy commended policy requires good politics. we are now i'm a moment in which the reset with russia, obama's engagement with russia may well fall because the senator refuses to ratify the nuclear arms control agreement that is now before it. if that happens, if this treaty is rejected it may well be that this whole investment with the russians either stalls are starts going backwards. that says to me a couple of things. one, obama needs to do a better
job making sure he has allowed such a strategy to back up his diplomatic strategy, and that probably means trying to get more republican by and. if it looks like some kind of dialogue moves forward with it ron, why not get a chance baker or another republican to get involved to try to make this a bipartisan effort, not the democratic one. finally, i think that one of the big threats to our diplomacy overall blood is not the daily ups and downs of engagement by, but the difficulty that we now faces the country politically. we desperately need to get our own house in order.
our strength abroad depends, number one, on our economic vitality and number two on our political willoughby. both are lagging today, and both are lagging today in part because we live in a country that is more divided than it has been for over a century. i think in the aftermath of the midterms obama has no choice but to pack to the center and try to cobble together a governing coalition's of democrats and republicans. let's not be pollyannas about it. it is going to be bloody difficult. but the democratic party has just lost a good portion of its moderate constituency and has shifted to the left. the republican party picked up a lot of votes, but they are not centrist members, but members to the right.
the republican party has gone this way and the democratic party has gone that way. voters have been left standing in the middle. obama will tack to the center. he will appeal to many americans who reside in the center, but he will have neither the republican party or the democratic party behind him. neither party establishment today who lives in the center of american politics. obama therefore, is in a very difficult position. and so my final thought would be, in a country by the parties are as far apart as they are perhaps it behooves us put citizens to rise up and say to our elected officials we are going to put you in a room, locked the door. we are sure we will give you food and water. we might. we are upset with you, but we don't want you to come out until you have a consensus, a plan to bring down the deficit, deal
with social security, deal without problems brought. i think right now the political establishment is not rising to the occasion. as i said, our strength abroad, our wisdom abroad starts at home. unless we get the home front take steps that we are certainly not going to be able to meet the challenges that the country faces abroad. thank you. [applauding] >> thank you. questions. the center aisle. come toward and ask your question.
>> yes, i would like to know your take on the recent wikileaks release as far as how it has affected relations throughout the world with our diplomatic relations. >> i think that the trove of documents that are now floating around in the public domain represent a serious breach of security. they embarrassed the u.s. government because this should not be happening. they embarrassed governments around the world because we have a people magazine of diplomatic cables be, who said what to a hoe, who doesn't like yo. i don't believe that we will look back at this as a watershed
that is because most of what we find in the tables we already knew it. we have more color, we have some titillating details, but we don't have any bombshells. so i don't see this as a time in which the american ship of state is being knocked off course. i see it as a time when president obama, secretary of state clinton and others need to do a lot of damage repair, damage limitation. they are doing it, getting out and trying to clean up the mess, but i don't see it as something that historians will look back at as a grievous blow to american diplomacy. >> is there some way that you can teach from international relationships the same type of message that you are giving so
that piece could break out within the united states to back you know, about a month ago or two months ago we heard that there is sort of a revival, perhaps, of the whig party representing a center groups. right now people at the center have no place to go. that is not just the people in this room. it is the congress people. they have no center. perhaps for international relations we need a leader, someone who can define the center and be a statesman as opposed to a politician. i would like your thoughts. >> a very, very good question and i think an urgent question. i think there are two ways to combat it.
one is to suggest that this might be a moment when a dark horse third-party candid could actually survive in american politics because, as i said, and i think that you agree from the thrust of your question. there are many americans, and i'll put myself in this boat, who feel like we are more or less in the big center of american politics, but our political system has veered to the extremes. so we are sort of out there and a life raft, and i'm not quite sure which direction to have been. so you could think about a third party can't it as being able to ride that wave of voters that feels it does not have a home. i am little skeptical of that will happen simply because it is a difficult for a third party to get traction. part of the reason is that the party system has locked up the
financial structure. we live in the world, like it or not, in which campaign finance is the pathway to getting elected. deeply entrenched in the democratic and weaken party. it is very hard for a third-party candidate to get his or her war in the water. the other would be to find someone from the republican party or the democratic party who just calls it quits to the war, rises above the bile and he says, will make it my business to govern and fashion a consensus because the american people deserve no less. you know, i think obama aspired to be a person as a candid it. that is the message he sent when he said, this is not read america. this is not blue america. this is the united states of
america. he got into office and he found it extremely difficult to realize that potential. i do think that we need a person of the extraordinary potential at this time because as i said, i think that the challenges that we face right now are every bit as severe as they were in world war ii or in dealing with the soviet union or the missile gap or whenever it was, but we don't have a political system, at least now, that is capable of rising to the occasion as we did earlier. i see it as an urgent national task to fix the political system. otherwise i think we are going to be in trouble. >> i'd be interested in your thoughts on the boundary between the united states and mexico, to countries which on the surface would appear to be very friendly
if elected the cultures that both embrace, but obviously a tremendous tensions exist between the drug issues and the immigration issues. is there anything that your studies might reveal that would help untangle that situation? >> well, one of the things that i've found in the research i did not speak that much about, but cultural commonality and similar social orders helped deepen peace. so the fact that the u.s. found a peaceful border with canada before it found a peaceful border with mexico should not be surprising because there is this greater similarity north and south. the same argument applies to norway and sweden and many of the other cases a look that. you can build peace across social and cultural boundaries. it is just harder to do because that underlying natural blue is harder to come by.
i do think that the u.s. and mexico have succeeded in reaching a stable peace. our border between canada and mexico is guarded, but it is guarded because of drugs and immigration, not because we are fearful of mexico geopolitically or vice versa. mexicans rail about the history of american intervention, but there are no mexican troops waiting for an american invasion. it's not going to happen. so the trick now is really twofold. finding some way to help mexico get control of its gain and its drug ridden culture or system and the north. the second, and this goes back to the previous question, did democrats and republicans to come together and fashion as serious immigration bill, probably some combination of
tightening the border controls and dealing with immigrants who are already here, but this finding of that compromise is at least for now one of the casualties of a political system where the two parties continue to move for their part. >> as we deal with the difficult nations could you talk a little bit about a unilateral approach reverses a multinational approach? >> any particular country and mine? >> well, i think there was criticism of us initially when we tried to do things supposedly under bush with north korea. it was a unilateral approach, and then we tried a multinational approach. neither one seems to have been very effective, but i would like to know your views as to which approach you think would be most effective generally. >> i think that the united
states has recovered a certain legitimacy and popularity abroad that it lost during the first bush administration but actually recovered during the second bush of ministration. i mean george w., not george h. w. there was, i think, a significant shift between george w. bush's first term and second term on the unilateral verses multilateral dimension. obama has to some extent continued the multilateral condition. i think the top in negotiating with north korea, iran, we need a combination of unilateral and multilateral. dna the multilateral because you need other countries to be part of the equation. for example, with ron if we are going to have a carrot and stick
the character being engagement and the state being isolation and sanctions we need the international community to stand with us. in general we have got them. the sanctions that are being applied are biting a run in a way that they have not, but you also need the unilateral. at the end of the day to run is scared of the united states. pyongyang is scared of the united states. so if there is going to be a deal on the nuclear issue in either country that ultimately requires an understanding between the united states and the government of iran and north korea that deals with their security issues. that can come only from washington. it can't come from brussels or from moscow or anyone else. that is why i think you need the multilateral and unilateral to be working hand in hand.
>> you mentioned the number as in four or five factors of of very important part of peace breaking out. i was wondering whether you would, whether you would comment on what is happening in europe, which of those factors you mentioned, especially responsible for peace to break out in europe. where do you see, in other words, what do you expect of europe in the future in terms of independence? >> at think that the story of european integration and peace, deepening its roots after world war ii was a product of that same kind of story that i told. fundamental understanding between france and germany where they settled their disputes and began to bind one another to each other.
the european coal and steel community, concessions over border issues. they restrained their power and thereby made the smaller states of europe comfortable with joining the union. in many respects the european project is every bit as profound as with the american project, knitting together a union from previously separate states. i worry more about europe than i have at any point since i entered this profession. that is because i think the european project has begun to stumble in no way that is, perhaps, irreversible. and it is not the euro some less that i worry about. i don't think the euro is going to disappear. it is conceivable that ireland reese or even a larger economy could temporarily dropped out of
the . i don't think that the euro itself will come apart. i do think that what we are seeing beneath the surface of the financial crisis is a real nationalization of european politics, politics has been drifting from brussels back down to national capitals. the collective spirits of the european enterprise, i think, is in jeopardy. here in the united states we move from a stronger federal government back to the states and from the states to the federal government, but it is always within a certain band. europe has not made it past the point of no return. it is not yet a union that is deep enough to withstand a serious reversal. so i would simply say that the jury is out as to whether this pause in the european project is just yet another. the second-guessing soon to be
replaced by the next step toward deeper union or whether we are actually witnessing the high watermark of europe. the years ahead, we will see europe resected -- began to recycle and reversed. we will be a problem. it desperately needs a collective europe as partners. unfortunately the united states has very little ability to affect this process every nationalization that is taking place in europe. >> we are going to see two more questions, first from tom and then the gentleman in the center. >> the process that you have been talking about typically takes a good deal of time and a lot of hard work. we seem to be faced right now with some very serious problems that don't have that time to deal with. in particular i am thinking of north korea. what are your suggestions?
how would you handle the situation that we face now that is becoming extremely serious in that part of the world to back. >> i think you are spot on to refer to the timing issue, and it has two different dimensions. one is the ability of time to work to our adversaries advantage, particularly in a country like iran which minute by minute day by day gets closer to being able to enrich uranium to weapons-grade. the time cuts against us at home in the sense that political time is measured in seconds and minutes. if we are lucky a day. the news cycle, internet. the poll of the serious episode with an adversary takes five to
ten years. 5-10 years is a century in political time today. it wasn't in 1995 because time moved more slowly back then. that is why i think it is so important for obama or whomever is leading this effort to worry about the domestic landscape. you need to be able to carry political support for something that takes a very long time. on the substance of dealing with austria and a run at think we really don't have much choice but to take this two-pronged approach. the threat of containment with north korea and isolation coupled with a willingness to talk and normalize that they are willing to get rid of their nuclear program in a verifiable way. with ron i think the same apply,
and i think many of you may be saying, why have we talking to this regime? this is a big mistake. the bottom line is that if we don't talk to them when know we will not get a diplomatic solution. if we don't get a diplomatic solution we know that there are two potential outcomes. one potential outcome is an error on with a nuclear weapon. that, to my mind is an ugly and unattractive outcome. the second half, is an american bombing campaign against tehran will probably last several weeks and lead to who knows what. that in my mind is also a very bad outcome and is why i would sit and leave the door open for dialogue until the 12th hour because the consequences of diplomatic failure are sufficiently how awful to warrant the dialogue. >> i, like you, am concerned
about the extremes of our two-party system. if i may up like to put you in a time capsule and sends you back to the deliberations of the constitution. with your knowledge what changes would you have made it the city limited term limits, the english system of limited amount of money on election campaigns? would there have been something, a change that might have avoided this? >> i think that the constitution and the structure of the american government was predicated upon the different political efforts. was predicated upon a delivered a democracy in which there was a sense that people would, as a matter of course, put the interest of the nation between
packed -- before the interest of the party with a politician. and that since the constitution is today operating in a very different political environment than the one that was envisioned by the founding fathers. i think that there are multiple causes of the erosion of civility and the erosion of centers in american politics. i'll just kick off a few of them. one of them, and you alluded to it, is the money. congress people spend an enormous amount of their time just raising money. in american politics the centrist, reasonable, generally nice voter does not have as much influence as the single special interest group that is funding gadgets. and so what happens is the
squeaky wheels are getting hurt and the centrist voters who want to do their jobs and go home and put a piece of fish on the grill aren't getting hurt because they are not playing that same game, the game in which fund-raising has become so critical to winning elective office. the second problem has been the congressional redistricting where districts have been drawn to be generally politically, genius. so when you run for office if 90 percent of your constituency is republican you have no incentive to either government or campaign. if 90 percent of your constituency is democrat it is exactly the same. i think we need to redraw constituencies so that candidates have a vested interest in running the government to the center because that is the only way that they can be elected. right now the opposite is
happening. a third problem is, the quality or lack thereof. i will stress the lack thereof of news, not even news. it is fistfights on evening television. i mean, if you want hard news tonight in the united states you want to find out what is happening in the world you really don't have many options. you can try to find the bbc world things. you can watch the news hour, but there are not a lot of options on television. that, i think, as part of the problem. then finally, and this is more of a hypothesis and it is anything else. i wonder whether the shift from the industrial age to the digital age is not creating regions of america that are more homogeneous than they used to be. during the industrious age we
had to move to the port, the river, the mine. as a result if you went stick, let's say, new england in 1955 or 1960 and you looked at who new england's are sent to congress you would probably get 60 percent republican and 50 percent democrat. today it is all democrat. if you go out to the mountain west it is exactly the opposite, almost all republican. to some extent at think what is happening is the country is being reasonably segregated. the region and party are starting to come into alignment. the last time that happened in a serious way with 1855 when the missouri compromise collapsed. we know what happened in 1860. that in good news. so there are a lot of reasons to be concerned about where the coy