This transcript is automatically generated
Tonight former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld what does he think about the dangers Lisa top secret information who does he think he is the source is -- the White House here is secretary Rumsfeld.
-- second -- sir thank you -- I'm first a question of the leaks.
I'm curious you're valuing.
Of these -- how serious -- I think quite serious and hit the problem is you'll never know how serious for some time because we keep our country goes out to other countries and asked them to cooperate -- -- aren't.
And when they see a behavior pattern where we're not responsible and don't behave properly with respect -- important information that they give us.
They're -- not want to cooperate with us and that if you have countries backing away unwilling to cooperate.
America loses in the American people it's the same thing with individuals we go to individuals and ask them to cooperate with us.
And if -- compromise and their families reporter risk and they are put at risk.
It tells everyone else we asked to help us.
Be careful of America and it's so it's a serious problem.
And in some ways that said the big picture view of this -- in this one of the one of the leaks is about this cyber attack on Iran's nuclear facilities.
And it seems to me then that is even more dangerous because.
We've heard so much by Israel can't go alone against Iran to knock out the nuclear about weapons program and and and we've been going back forth.
To some extent to what were involved in what we're gonna do this was certainly it seem like really.
Quick potential way to disable it.
And so this -- seems ever real and direct impact on Israel would develop this cyber -- let us.
You know I'm.
I'm not into the details but but there is no question but that countries are vulnerable to cyber attacks including the United States.
And how they're done and who does them is not something that -- in my view ought to be discussed in the public.
How I -- just -- how safe are weep for reverse situation in any serves -- -- that how safe we have to a cyber attack from another country.
I think it is probably correct to say that.
The countries that are them most advanced technologically.
The United States and the countries that are the freest.
And end up pride themselves on being free nations and people being free.
Are the most vulnerable and if you think of the extent to which we've thrown away their shoe boxes with the three by five cards -- the -- IBM cards with punches and -- And are dependent on digits everything's dependent on digits today and and there's our vulnerability in its real and serious.
Is the -- billion beaming and I don't mean -- this but it can disrupt our financial system.
Liked it Grammy.
-- give me some idea how bad it could -- a -- take a minute that I don't want it so been alarmist I'm trying to think like is it something that we -- this is going to be disruptive for two months abroad going to be you know.
Very distressed to disturb -- have much work.
Well it's much more serious.
Let me just take Katrina.
What's electricity goes out you can't lift gas.
You can't get gas out of her her gas station and it doesn't pump.
People can move around they can't you can't rescue people the potential is to get stable and activity like a power grid the potential is to confuse and mislead.
And they can potentially is to deny capability so it it it runs the full gamut from the cyber attacks can run the full gamut.
In thin and in every respect.
It technologically advanced countries countries that are more heavily dependent on digits than most.
People that are more banks and people that are more heavily dependent on digits are the most vulnerable.
How do we know and I I guess investigation will give us more information about a -- sometime down the road.
Whether this particular link about these three and then the three topics are -- that analysts seized the town which is the double agent Tom.
And and one end and -- cyber attack and of course speak to kill list.
How do we know or -- session when this was -- clumsy.
Or whether the system and deliver with some sort of sinister motive for instance a political lot of.
Everything I can tell watching it.
As observer of these things is that it did not come from the department of defense and did not come from the CIA.
And indeed if I -- -- -- department of defense and I suspect the military over there whose people are put at risk when there's additional information learned about how we conduct our operations.
Have to be grinding their -- it looks to be out of the White House now at what level in the White House I'm not enough position to.
I am but is it out of the White House -- someone said something to somebody asks is it something some gas and shouldn't have said any of the stuff that I'll war.
Is it something where someone need to get sensed that was done.
-- selfish political race it says very different both -- back.
But one to me is much more sinister in trouble and than the other regardless of the and did the same impact.
Well I just don't know and and if you hit it you know -- this intricate it disinterested observer looked at -- they have to say that -- had -- head.
The cumulative effect of managing the president politically.
When people have.
These discussions and when you when you had -- a class -- -- people usually in the room.
Any kind is that a sentiment -- but me how I mean when you assume within any given time -- his very high level classified meetings.
Well you saw the picture of the.
The taken in this situation room when they had discussed the attack on -- -- That's about right there are some military people listen political people listen CIA people there's some civilians from the department of defense and some White House staff.
So your new look and in the situation room you'd probably have.
Round the table six or seven -- in the unless strap hangers in the back you probably have another eight you're talking anywhere from fourteen to twenty.
-- so some of the good discussion no inside the situation room isn't classified somewhat Dyson is not classified -- -- -- summit.
How are usually isn't the -- -- the people know Richard don't say this one minute I so it's not simply left up to good judgment I assume that the you know that there's some sort of and -- determined that this is classified don't talk about it we could talk about this.
Once the president calls a meeting in the situation room and you've got the National Security Council and then they.
Deputies are the people behind.
The people there don't need anyone to tell -- sensitive -- what's not sensitive.
If the president decides that something is particularly sensitive -- the director of CIA -- the secretary of defense secretary of state.
They then would have -- -- Principal only meeting and you would have the president the vice president and the members of the National Security Council it.
The secretary of Defense Secretary state CIA director and and the chairman of the joint chiefs.
If there is something that is even needs to be even.
Restricted to a greater extent and that secretary of state or defense or CIA director decide that they have -- piece of information.
That would be terribly damaging and compromise our troops are compromising.
An ally that provided us the information.
Something of an operational nature they might very well simply talk to the present.
And not even do it in the meeting without -- express so you can -- people who are around these things over the years.
You know I haven't levels where they operate.
Experience and -- them as they get they get it I know if something's classified.
Ads at some point it might become unnecessary to have a classified.
Is it officially declassified.
By the president could be servant for -- okay we're not this is going to be this -- no -- classified.
Yes yes you hadn't.
It can be classified it at one level and at that level can be reduced.
As time goes on if there's a reason to do that you want to include more people you also not only have classifications top secret secret confidential.
Official use only and the like.
You also have compartments you can have something that is -- people lot of people cleared for top secret but it's in a compartment and they're not cleared for that compartment.
And and that is also something it can be taken all of a compartment if for some reason it's okay.
But but even people cleared for top secret are not allowed into all the compartments because that's based on the need to know.
And Democrats Republicans both are very disturbed about the -- -- -- senator Feinstein is a Democrats example Senator McCain not a -- there's a controversy though as to how this should be investigated push investigate.
To train generous appointed to US attorneys one -- Marilyn was appointed by President Bush and one from DC appointed by President Obama.
Some was -- some senators inclusive -- one at a special prosecutor.
What do you think is the better way forward on us.
Oh I'm not in a position -- second guess it.
I I think the principle that ought to be applied is this regardless of whether there are people appointed by.
An attorney general holder.
That work for him up political appointees which both of those people would be.
For a special prosecutor.
I think this test is not left the -- is.
By the people appointed the kinds of people -- reasonable members of the house and senator gonna -- and say they'll do your job.
They're not gonna trim they have they have reputations.
I worry about a lot of special prosecutors.
You know they get unlimited budgets they can go one for ever if they don't report to anybody.
And into our system I think -- being able to hold someone accountable.
Other than a special prosecutor is not a bad idea.
But but but if that's the case if it's not a special prosecutor seems to me it has to be somebody that the Republicans and the Democrats in the house and senate who are concerned about this and with good reason.
Ought to be able to -- and -- fair enough those people will do a decent job.
Jumping ahead a minute that -- at this may be a criminal action -- can't may not to -- there's a lot to be learned and discovered that but what's happened someone -- -- -- like this and some I know what what should we give -- some iTunes.
At the -- can be prosecuted criminally for certain.
Breaching security classification.
If it's not against a lot -- -- suppose that difference for whatever reason that Kansas is one of those areas and then prayers -- there isn't a -- that -- covered precisely so it's not.
-- a lot what's happened.
You have a lawyer Greta.
-- may not be a legal issue.
You know it inmate you know -- -- well enough.
-- -- -- I mean we've sent people to jail for further violating security for compromising classified information it could be unclassified.
Yeah okay those -- the things that we're talking about fairway of the leaks are I have to believe we're not unclassified they were classified.
I would find it hard to believe too but data and that's the -- the enemy we'll find out what the investigation.
Not not return to Pakistan we are now paying a hundred million dollars a month extra for the last seven months because the pakistanis have closed the root -- going to -- stand for -- supplies.
And and as because and because and didn't the United States will not apologize for those soldiers were killed in that strike last November.
What -- that's not just.
My thoughts are that that Pakistan is a complicated relationship it's an enormously important country.
To us it is our access into Afghanistan it's a landlocked country Afghanistan.
It's a country that has a Muslim population has nuclear weapons.
Has page intelligence service that had long relationships with terrorists and and the -- -- It is a country that stepped up and was terrific supporter of the war on terror.
They captured people in the urban areas they tried to help out and -- federally administered tribal area and and got a lot of people killed and didn't do very well in the Fatah.
Now what we do about it well I think which we do -- we say look it's important relationship.
Why don't we try to -- down conduct.
Private diplomacy and not run around yelling and screaming and pointing fingers.
Our congressman can yell and scream -- parliament can yell and scream.
But I would think the government would wouldn't sit down and say okay.
They've got their problems we've got ours we need that relationship and they need that relationship when we find areas where we can agree.
They want an apology.
And windy -- -- said we regret the deaths of those soldiers but that's the hang up -- they want an apology from the United States and yeah I sage says it was joint air.
And so -- nice it's one apologize.
I think it without knowing the facts I would know what the answer to that would be I can I can say this.
The the in the fact pattern would determine what our behavior ought to be and it is unclear to me.
What I think is sort of unusual in all of this is that we are now great supplies in through Russia to the northern part of Afghanistan.
And we're we're we're grateful that Russia is like an aspirin -- supplies in to help our troops and then on the other hit and we're having a very difficult time with Russia over Syria so on the one hand they're they're helping us cuts are paying for and then the other hand and they give you know they're doing is something that we find egregious.
-- the relationship of rush's complicated as well that reset button didn't work.
And we've got real problems when that country -- the things they're doing.
The assistants they're providing to Iran -- respect to their nuclear program here unwillingness to be terribly helpful with respect to North Korea there.
Assistance due to their.
Close friend Syria.
And in so many respects they are.
I mean they sold how -- how many thousands of AK forty -- to Chavez in Venezuela.
That they -- make a pattern of working with countries that are unfriendly to the United States and and this is nothing new.
How we'd -- fifteen back towards the -- the Cold War.
So I don't think so I think that there's so that Russia is isn't totally different thing than than the Soviet Union wants during the Cold War.
I mean Russia's got -- And he.
Probably had GDP about the size of Portugal except for their energy.
They've got problems with their borders with people they've got Muslim.
Problems -- there.
Population they've got alcohol problems they've got a large prison population may have difficulty with their conscripts -- their military they've got -- outflow of it.
I've educated people who who were going to better its places they have trouble attracting industry outside the energy business because of the rule law issues and corruption.
So its own.
It is a totally different thing from the Soviet Union what's your position analog sea treaty.
I am but.
Testified against the law of the sea treaty I think that there are some good things and it's that our military and our navy -- -- can -- would benefit us.
There -- some -- degree of certainty that the business community would achieve which is a plus also.
But but when you weigh it against the the concept fits in there that concept goes to something called the.
-- -- Whole idea that -- had -- that that that that film with high seeds are.
The property of humanity.
Meaning they're not owned by anybody therefore there -- -- moment.
And this proposes to create a state constitution for the high seas with the legislature.
The executive -- judicial body.
And and give away too undeveloped countries developing countries landlocked countries.
What looks to be in the neighborhood of certainly -- probably tens of billions possibly hundreds of billions of dollars over time.
From royalties that companies that go out and and mind he's not jewels in the high seas.
Would have to pay into the thing called the -- in an orwellian way the international sea -- authority.
And the authority would make a lot of these decisions so -- I've never seen -- treaty that that.
Suggests that that's the way to rid -- distribute wealth in the world it doesn't use the World Bank it doesn't leaves the congress with AID programs.
It it gives it to this authority.
Billions of dollars undoubtedly.
And and authority makes the decision as to how they're gonna give that money away to developing countries.
I I don't I think that's a concept that is never been used before.
And I -- I'm uncomfortable with it and when I weigh the advantages of the treaty against that disadvantage.
I mean what's next to the outer space we're gonna decide that that's the property of all humanity.
And and create a big global international.
Outer space authority like this this -- -- authority.
It it is it is such a fundamental shift in anything that we believe in this country.
In terms of the distribution of wealth and the redistribution of wealth that I I just come away and comfortable with it it just exchange -- to see -- -- --