'This Week' Transcript: Target Libya

Share
Copy

WOLFOWITZ: I do. I think that what we have prevented, for one thing, is a bloodbath in Benghazi, which would have stained our reputation throughout the Arab world, at a time when our reputation really matters. And I understand George's hesitations, but it would seem to me, if you follow those hesitations, you say, it's better to keep this devil that we know than the unknown, and I don't see how any unknown could be worse than the devil who is in Tripoli right now. AMANPOUR: Except wouldn't you say the hesitation -- you can trace it right back to your operation in Iraq, that, you know, it caused such a pendulum swing against trying to intervene because of the chaos that was unleashed.

WOLFOWITZ: We have paid the price of intervention. Sometimes we've paid the price of nonintervention, in Bosnia, for example. One of the things that makes the situation so unique is the monstrous quality of the Tripoli regime, the monstrous quality of Gadhafi and his sons. And I know, you know, people say, well, what about Bahrain? What about Yemen? This is a totally different case, where a man is actually slaughtering his own people, has no regard for his own people. He uses mercenaries to kill them. It is a unique case, and it's being watched throughout the Arab world.

AMANPOUR: Well, let me ask you, former congresswoman. You sat on the Intelligence Committee. You -- I mean, this question about why Libya and not Bahrain or -- or Yemen, American allies, is that a valid distinction to make?

HARMAN: I think it is. First, let me salute the life and service of Warren Christopher, a dear friend from California, who died yesterday and say how honored I am now to be president and CEO of the Woodrow Wilson Center, succeeding Lee Hamilton, and working with scholars like Robin and Aaron David Miller and others.

I think we have to see this in a broader context. I just watched your Mike Mullen interview, where he said we -- we view each of these countries individually. We need a strategic narrative.

And as I look at this, from my experience being in Congress when we did nothing in Rwanda, which Bill Clinton said was his biggest mistake, when we intervened in -- in Bosnia, did a no-fly zone, which didn't prevent the -- the massacre at Srebrenica, when we -- when Congress acted in Afghanistan, the authorization to use military force is still in effect, and then we took our eye off the ball, when we went into Iraq, I voted for that, because I believed the intelligence, which turned out to be wrong, I see lessons to be learned, and I'm not sure we're learning all the lessons.

As I look at it, the biggest threats to the United States, to our homeland security, are Yemen and some of the Al Qaida and other terror cells in Pakistan. Going into Libya has a moral objective, and I strongly agree with that. And I also think that Hillary Clinton and Susan Rice, who were strong proponents of what we're doing here, are great public servants.

But we have to understand that just a no-fly zone here may not cause regime change. And if we have a cornered Moammar Gadhafi -- who is not a rational actor -- and he uses mustard gas against his people, how have we...

AMANPOUR: Well, actually -- Admiral Mullen...

HARMAN: ... how have we prevented that?

AMANPOUR: Admiral Mullen said that there wasn't a huge amount of threat there.

HARMAN: There are two tons of liquefied mustard gas in Libya.

Page
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...