tv Face the Nation CBS March 11, 2018 8:30am-9:00am PDT
captioning sponsored by cbs >> brennan: today on "face the nation". president trump turns tradition upside down again. agreeing to meet face-to-face with north korean dictator kim jong-un to discuss denuclearization. if it a happened, he will be the first sitting u.s. president to meet with a north korean leader. >> i think north korea is going to go very well. they promised they wouldn't be shooting off missiles in the meantime, as they look to denuke. >> brennan: question spite is diplomatic coup for president trump skeptics are concerned it will end up being a propaganda's victory for kim's rogue regime. >> we will talk to mike pompeo about the risks, the conditions of the summit and the state of north korea's nuclear program, the gamble and some concessions on part of the president toward
u.s. allies cool the potential international trade war. >> a lot of steel mills are now opening up because of what i did, steel is back and aluminum is back. >> brennan: but some republicans in congress fear the tariffs will hurt american manufacturers and farmers and vows to fight the president we will talk to cory gardner and get his reaction to the news on north korea. >> cbs news correspondent holly williams will report from south korea about the silence from kim jong-un since the -- since the announcement in washington. we will discuss the developing diplomatic situation with a special panel of experts and have plenty of analysis on the week's political news. it is coming up nex now on "face nation". good morning and welcome to "face the nation". i am margaret brennan. since the, he accepted rt korea aian leader ease kim jong-un to meet, president trump has been publicly optimistic and had kind words about a regime he
has harshly criticized. >> came to my office after having gone to north korea and kim jong-un -- no, it is very positive. no. after the meeting him, but now we have to be very nice. i think they want to do something. i think they want to make peace i think it is time. >> brennan: but there are many questions about the risk of such direct talks and what conditions must be net before the two leaders sit down. to get insight we talk to
cia director mike pompeo, director, welcome to the show. it has been three days since the president accepted this invitation. has north korea responded? >> well, margaret, first of all thanks for having me on the show. irrelevant think it is important to step back, to figure out how we got here for two decades america whistled past the grave yard and allowed the north korean regime to build up the capacity. this administration faced when it came into office. >> brennan: so a few months away from being able to hit the
u.s. mainland. >> that's right. they have made tremendous progress over these years. president trump took a different tact entirely. he put an enormous global allied supported pressure campaign on the north koreans, that has had a real impact on the regime, on the north korean economy, and has caused kim jong-un to reach out and say he wants to begin to have discussions on terms that the united states has never achieved before. that is where we find ourselves today and we are going to work hard to make sure that we get what it is the president has set out very clearly for his entire time in office, which is the complete verifiable irreversible denuclearization of north korea. >> brennan: are we in direct contact with north korea? >> i think secretary tillerson said there are channels open. >> brennan: but we haven't heard back whether kim will accept what the president has said is his willingness to meet as soon as may? >> i don't want to get into the conversations that may or may not be taking place, the president has indicated he is prepared to go have an initial discussion on this incredibly
important topic and we are preparing for that time. >> brennan: now, the president accepted this invitation fairly quickly on the promise as you gestured to of a pause in missile and nuclear tests. why not ask for more? why not ask for actual freeze of their program so they don't use dip city as a cover to continue development? >> well, we have gotten more than any previous administration, an agreement to not continue testing nuclear weapons and their missile program. the things that would put them capable of getting across the threshold, that is critical. and he has allowed us to continue our exercises on the peninsula, something that has been fought over for decades. and at the same time he has agreed to have a conversation about denuclearization, in the end, margaret, what will turn out is not about words and what someone says. this administration has in its eyes wide open and the whole time this conversation takes place, the pressure will continue to mount on north korea. there is no relief in sight
until the president gets the objective that he has set forth consistently during his entire time in office. >> brennan: so you are saying more sanctions but in meantime north korea can continue its enrichment and computer modeling, things that would allow it to enrich and develop a nuclear program? >> well, i don't want to comment on that specifically but be sure. >> brennan: well they haven't -- >> that is happening today to be sure. be sure that is happening today, and so -- >> brennan: that is continuing to happen while we are talking. >> we are going to continue to put pressure not to have financial resources to build the programs and we have been very effective on these things, none of that is going to change while we have a set of talks between the two people who can make these important decisions. >> are you open to meeting with your north korean counterpart? >> i will leave how these discussions proceed to the president of the united states. he will set the course and tone for the direction. but i had a chance this weekend to read the history, the cia's history of our involvement in the previous failed negotiations. you can be sure that we won't
make those mistakes again and question will be at the center of providing the intelligence picture to the president and to the secretary of state so that each of them can understand how it is we can most likely achieve the president's objective. >> brennan: when i saw the secretary of state rex tillerson last month on 60 minutes he described what he said was a plan for talks. let's listen to that. >> we do have a plan for negotiations. we have an end state for that and it is a very step watch process. we are not just going to leap from where we are today to denuclearization. we understand this is something that will have to be done through various steps to eventually achieve that final objective of denuclearization. and that will come through a lot of negotiations, a lot of difficult talks, what we have to determine now is are we even ready to start? are they ready to start? >> brennan: tillerson said this will be done through him. is that still the plan? >> this is a level of discussion the president is going to drive in effort, this negotiation, but
it will take a team to build up a picture so we put the president in the best position so that he can achieve that outcome. >> brennan: because it is unclear, though, the state department or your agency that will take the lead. it was your counterpart from south korea who was at the white house this week. >> i don't think there is any doubt about who is going to take the lead on this. the president of the united states is going to take the lead. >> brennan: well the first meeting will be the presidential summit? >> the united states will take the lead in resolving this important conflict with north korea. >> but in terms of laying the ground work you can't send your president into that meeting without making sure that you give him the best tools possible. will you take those first meetings? will the secretary take those first meetings? how do you lay the groundwork for success? >> margaret, i am not going to talk about how the negotiations will proceed on this sunday show. rest assured when the president enters that room with kim jong-un, if kim jong-un lives up to the four commitments that he has made, those four major concessions, the president will be fully prepared for his conversation with kim jong-un. >> brennan: in terms of the
goal here, when you are in congress, you are harshly critical of the nuclear deal with iran that the obama administration negotiated and a there are obviously flaws they recognize there but the iranians did give up the vast majority of the nuclear fuel and their production facilities aren't functioning. have you set a higher benchmark for these talks since north korea is further along with its nuclear program? >> yes, margaret, i think that's the case. most importantly the conditions are very different. the previously administration was negotiating from a position of weakness. this administration will be negotiating from a position of enormous strength with sanctions that are on, unrivaled against the north korean regime. that conversation will precede, proceed very differently my tricreek critique of the obama is they left the iranians with a breakout capacity. they had a short time frame that these would -- these restrictions would remain in
place and north korea's human capital and enrichment capacity continues to remain in place. those are all things that present risks for the world and president obama, excuse me, president trump is determined to prevent that from happening in north korea. >> brennan: so you look at that deal and say, that is a starting point or that is at least what we can reach if not going beyond that with north korea? >> yes, ma'am. >> brennan: well, north korea as we said, is further along in its program, you said a few months away from being able to hit the u.s. mainland in january. how much further have they progressed since january? >> i don't want to get into any details on that, suffice it to say i think a few months is still a fair characterization of where the regime sits today with respect to their capacity to reach the united states. >> brennan: i want to quickly ask you about syria but over before i do that can you tell me about the three americans still in captivity in north korea? >> no, ma'am. i don't have anything to add to that, the state department is handling those negotiations and america does have as a priority getting the return of those
three american citizens just as quickly as we can. >> brennan: in syria, now in are reports of napalm plus chlorine tasks outside of damascus and east gupta, why doesn't the president red line a chemical weapons apply in these cases? >> margaret the president has made very clear he won't tolerate chemical weapons usage and demonstrated his willingness to respond . in this case, the intelligence community is working diligently to verify what happened there. i have seen the pictures, you have seen the pictures as well. we have a higher standard to make sure we understand precisely what took place, precisely who did it so that our response can meet the threat and we are working two do that and we have seen the reports and the president asked me nearly every day what it is the intelligence community knows about the syrian regime's use of whem cal peps and who else, the russians for iranians who might be responsible for them. >> brennan: so for you it is a question of is it the regime or is it the russians using the napalm and chlorine gas, just to
clarify. >> we are still trying to figure out precisely what happened in each of these cases. >> the israelis including the prime minister was here this week was warning that iran is unchecked within syria. should the u.s. mission change to be able to a counter iran and its proxies like hezbollah. >> policy to others, what i can say about what is taking place inside of syria is that the iranians had a free pass in the previous administration, in fact, the jcpoa and the negotiations prevent add united states response, that is they didn't want -- the previous administration ben rhodes and obama didn't want to upset the apple cart this administration has taken a much stronger approach, a much more aggressive posture rarpt to countering iran and we are working closely with the israelis to develop a full intelligence picture of what is taking place there so the president has options to counter that threat. >> so what i hear you saying is that the mission is not solely to counter isis? you are also looking at iran and
its proxy? >> the president has made very clear we are workings diligently to find the right approach to counter the incredible spread of iranian money throughout the middle east. >> director i have so much more to talk to you about abu i am out of time. >> thank
you, margaret. >> brennan: thanks a for coming on the show, it is great to hear directly from you, we are joining by colorado senator kor door, a leading republican voice in congress on north korea policy, he joins us from his family's farm equipment business in yuma, colorado, which is, you got tractor parts behind you there, sir. >> we have a lot of stuff i used to stock in here a long, long time ago. >> brennan: what i want to ask you on the news of the moment, you and five other republican senators sent a letter to the administration asking them to outline their north korea strategy and just heard the cia director outline his thoughts here. did you hear the strategy you were asking for? >> well, i think what i heard him say is right, because we have -- we have found ourselves in this position because of the maximum pressure doctrine turning away from the failed
doctrine of strategic patience and now really crippling what is left of the north korean economy. but what we have to hear more of is how we are going to get to those concrete verifiable steps toward denuclearization before this meeting occurs. i talked a lot about the diplomatic runway, the lengths we have left on the diplomatic runway, ways we can work with north korea and a china who has enabled north korea in many cases, to make sure that we are putting maximum pressure on them, but we have to have those steps, those real concrete steps before this meeting occurs because after this meeting, there is going to be very little left of that diplomatic runway. >> brennan: so the four steps the director said this administration has guaranteed that have gone farther than past administrations in his claim, those are not enough for you? >> well, if you go back to 1994 to the agreed framework, you go back to 2005, north korea has made a plot of promises, and they have reneged on every single one of those promises. and so what we have to do is to assure we are in a different position than we were back in '94, back in 20fine, back in
2007. >> brennan: so you want to freeze of the nuclear program before starts talk? >> well, i would like to see some concrete steps more than just a cessation of testing because you can still do computer modeling, look the united states is making advances every day on our nuclear program and we are not testing nuclear missiles and nuclear weapons each day. but we are still making advance.s so what we need to see is north korea the actually start living up to some of the agreements .. the agreements they have made they said they would to the united states decades ago. >> brennan: you are also one of about 100 republicans who have urged the real estate to reconsider these tariffs on steel and aluminum he signed off on this week he is not changing his mind so what kind of legislative work around are you proposing? >> well, we have tools at our disposal the tool is how do we get that to the president for signature, we have set up a seasonal where the president has to agree with legislation that cops out of congress. there are ways we can know the framework that the president is using to increase or levy those
tariffs, there are things we can do but most importantly is this, a rec his that we agree on fair trade deals, that we free we want the united states treated in a way that we are treating other nations and if we can do better than we should better. but i am concerned that a tariff can result in a tax on the very same people that we are trying to help in this economy, that they can actually be hurt instead of being helped by this action, so let's work, and spend the next few weeks trying to figure out exactly how to narrowly tailored the tariffs can be, and go after the bad actors, if it is china let's make sure we hold them accountable but i spoke to the ceo of everest steel mill in colorado, conrad winkler and talked a little bit about just the impact that the nafta would have on the them if we were to withdraw, doubled with the steel tariff, he is very greatful that can a da has been removed from the steel tariff, who else is removed through this process we will wait and see but there are a lot of conversations we need to have with the white house to make sure the economic benefit outweigh it is economic harm of
such tariff actions. >> brennan: would you ask for a carveout for countries that have a security relationship with the united states, like south korea and japan? >> well, i think it is incredibly important that we have our allies standing with us, not just on the economy but in security matters and if you look at the north korea situation, what south korea is dealing with and japan is dealing with and that's why a lot of the times when i talk about north korea i talk about the try lateral relationship between japan, south korea and the united states, it is not just the united states alone and not just south korea alone, this is an important relationship that we have to get right, so if japan cheating us then let's get that fixed but right now we need focus on get this right on the economy and open up new opportunities to trade, not fewer and hold the responsible actors like china responsible for their actions. >> brennan: right. >> and not bring our friends into a way that can cause harm a. >> brennan: last night at a pennsylvania rally president trump said ronald reagan was not great on trade. this is the republican agenda still pro free trade? you know, absolutely.
i think everyone in congress agrees that opening up newmarkets is better for the united states. >> when he says -- the president is not wrong when he says that we need fair deals, if somebody is taking advantage of us, if our markets are open and nobody -- and they are not paying tariffs to get into this country, but yet we turn around and have to pay tariffs to get into their country, then something is wrong with familiar that, i think the american people understand that, but where we are going to get this wrong is if we start into a trade war that results in our allies penalizing us, increasing cost of consumer goods, making it more difficult for the american people to afford goods that they commonly buy at the grocery store, i am particularly concerned about the impact i ths could have on agriculture because that is really going to be in the front lines of any kind of trade retaliation that we see and in a big ag state right here where most of our top ten exports are agriculture so we have to get this right and narrowly taylor this to the bad actors, i do believe that in general, tariffs are a tax on the american people and the people who are going to be harmed by this are the very
people who are trying to help so much, the people who have struggled far too long 0 for the past decades that haven't seen a wage increase in years. >> i want to quickly ask you about guns, john cornyn has a bill strength authentic the background check system is it correct you have put a hold on this? >> i think there are some of us talking about due process issues in the bill and legislation, i have talk to senator cornyn and i hope senator cornyn will realize we need to work this due process matter out. there is not an issue of whether you like this or not, it is a question of constitutional rights and protecting the people -- >> brennan: so you are blocking the bill for now? >> and making sure we are protecting people from harm and making sure we get this right and if there is a constitutional issue at stake, then that should be worked out. >> brennan: but to clarify from your answer there, are you blocking this bill from the floor? >> this bill can come to the floor and we will continue to work through an amendment process and i hope we can fix those amendments. >> brennan: after you fix this bill you will allow it to go to the floor but not before this?
>> well, i think if we can have an amendment process that works, to fix due process concerns, real constitutional issues, then i hope that is something we can do. i hope that people who support this bill are interested like all of us in making sure we are protecting the american people from harm. >> brennan: all right f senator gardner, thank you very much for joining face the nation. >> thanks for having me, thank you. >> brennan: we will be back in one minute with cbs news correspondent holly williams correspondent holly williams reporting from south korea. rom , it's a race against time. and keeping it in the right conditions best way to get that fish to your plate safely. (dane chauvel) sometimes the product arrives, and the cold chain has been interrupted, and we need to be able to identify where in the cold chain that occurred. (tom villa) we took our world class network, and we developed devices to track environmental conditions. this device allows people to understand what's happening with the location, but also if it's too hot, if it's too cold,
if it's been dropped... it's completely unique. (dennis woloshuck) if you have a sensor that can keep track of your product, it keeps everybody kind of honest that way. who knew a tiny sensor could help keep the food chain safe? ♪ >> brennan: since thursday's announcement about a meeting between president trump and kim jong-un, there has been plenty of reaction here and from our allies. we turn now to cbs news foreign correspondent holly williams in 0 seoul, south korea, some 35 miles from the north korean border. holly, what are you hearing over there? >> good morning, margaret. what is bizarre is the whole world is talking about this meeting between president trump and kim jong-un, but we have had no direct confirmation of it from north korea. it has been completely silent, at least in public, there is, this has all come through south
korea. >> it began with a rare meeting between senior south korean officials and kim kim in 0 pyongyang this past week. he gave them a message for president trump, inviting him to meet. >> the 0 south koreans delivered it to the president personally. >> kim said that north korea will refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests. >> reporter: it is an extraordinary turn of events after a spate of north korean missile tests last year and now nuclear test in september and months of insults. >> he is an expert on north korea and its nuclear program and says the north is eager to talk because economic sanctions are hurting the regime. >> it is not going to be easy because the north koreans are very good negotiators, they know how to play the game. >> what is the game that they play? get everything they want and give nothing in return.
>> north korea has also reneged on previous deals. other sitting u.s. presidents have decided against meeting with north korean leaders and rewarding them with some legitimacy without getting concessions from them first. >> is it possible that they are better negotiators than president trump who prides himself on being able to make a deal? >> the north koreans have had 2582 years of experience dealing with americans, but in the states, the administration has changed. that is what the north sees as american strategic weakness, changes in personnel, changes in characters. >> reporter: the key player in this region is china, perhaps ththe only country with the leverage to force north korea to denuke rise, it has been tougher on enforcing sanctions recently but for years china has been north korea's biggest trading partner .. and a lifeline 0 too the regime. margaret. >> brennan: holly, thanks. and we will be back with our national security panel to talk more about this potentially more about this potentially historic development.
>> brennan:ier joined now by a panel of national security experts, michael morell is a former deputy cia director and cbs news senior security contributor, she a senior fellow at the brookings institute and a worked at the cia and the office of the director of national intelligence and david sang search national security correspondent for "the new york times" and cnn contributor. mike, what did you make of director pompeo's justification of these talks? >> i thought it was very interesting that both the director and senator gardner made it absolutely clear that the united states feels that we are coming to this from a position of strength, because the sanctions have been tough, right, they have hurt, but what is interesting is i think that kim jong-un also feels that he is coming to this from a pox of strength. he has nuclear weapons, he has demonstrated an each bcm, icbm 0 capability, he hasn't put it back down yet but he feels like he is coming at this from a position of strength sitting
down as an equal, so i think that says something about expectations on both sides. and whether they can be met or not. >> brennan: you think this is a reward before anything has been given up? >> i think that north korea and kim jong-un, in particular, put a very high value on being seen as meeting with the president of the united states. it gives him legitimacy both at home and abroad, very important to him. he has gotten -- he will get that if this happens. he has only given a short-term freeze in missile and nuclear tests, right? i think we could have gotten more for what he really wanted here. >> brennan: okay. well we need to take a very short break. we have a lot more to talk about with all of you. so stay with us. >> . >>