DONALDSON: I think we have more respect today because this president is realistically saying, "We've made these mistakes, and we acknowledge that, and we're going to do a little better here, and we're going to have a different tone in the world rather than, 'We're the United States of America. We have nothing to apologize for.'" What a bunch of hooey. That will get us with 305 million people of the 7 billion in this world.
DOWD: You've got your wish. You've got your wish. We've done a great job in the six months apologizing.
STEPHANOPOULOS: But my question is...
DONALDSON: We have 305 million people, and there are 7 billion people in the world.
STEPHANOPOULOS: Hold on.
DONALDSON: I'm shouting you down.
STEPHANOPOULOS: One second. What was the alternative? I take your point about the apologizing. But what was the alternative, when the North Koreans come to the United States and say, "If you send Bill Clinton, we're releasing the women"? The president has no choice.
HAASS: This is a good outcome, because he didn't apologize about policy. We didn't make policy concessions. We didn't agree to reduce sanctions. We didn't agree to bilateral talks as opposed to six-party talks. This is OK.
NOONAN: He got the women home. He removed it. He took this little agitating issue off the table. It was not a big propaganda coup for North Korea. Once again, everybody looked at the pictures of North Korea and Kim and thought, "Oh, that's not a good place." Bill Clinton made everybody smile again. It ended fine.
DONALDSON: If I had known you were on my side, I would have...
(UNKNOWN): You would have stopped?
STEPHANOPOULOS: Also this week, the administration considered that a foreign policy success. They were even more excited about this killing in Pakistan at the end of the week of the Taliban leader in Pakistan, Baitullah Mehsud, who had become the Taliban leader in Pakistan, killed by a drone attack.
Apparently, he was on the roof of his father-in-law's house with his second wife getting some treatment for diabetes. The drones came in. He was killed. Even though it hasn't been 100 percent confirmed, the administration officials believe it.
And -- and, Richard, I was struck at the end of the week, the White House, the Pentagon, State Department, they were really, really buzzing about this as the news started to come out, and we kept hearing again and again and again this is a really big deal. Explain that.
HAASS: It is a big deal. It's a really good day. It helps legitimatize some of these missile attacks, which we've been taking a lot of criticism for, because it does show they can be quite discrete and quite effective.
He was incredibly important within the Pakistani Taliban orbit psychologically, as well as operationally and politically. This is a big setback.
But all that said, it wasn't the decisive day. It was a good day, but not a decisive day. This is not the end of the beginning; this is not the beginning of the end. This is simply one good day for us.
But the fundamental problems of Pakistani governance, the fact that they're not in control of large chunks of their western territory, the realities of the war in Afghanistan are all with us, but you don't have decisive days in struggles against terrorism.
STEPHANOPOULOS: But this drone attack did appear to also set up a fight among his subordinates...