Ned Lamont on Homeland Security
LAMONT: While we have been bogged down in Iraq, the world has become a much more dangerous place. In each case, first and foremost, it’s time for hard-headed direct negotiations --negotiations backed up by sanctions, and negotiations are always backed up by the threat of force. Negotiation is not a form of appeasement - it’s one of the tools in our toolbox for dealing with these rogue nations, and we’ve got to use it.
SCHLESINGER: North Korea can be dealt with either bilaterally or in 6-way talks. In Iran, Ahmadinejad has 18 nuclear facilities, 6 enriched nuclear warheads, and that’s not for energy purposes.
LIEBERMAN: With regards to both Iran and North Korea, we need to first use economic and diplomatic sanctions. But they must know that in the final analysis, the US and our allies are prepared to stop Iran from becoming nuclear, and to stop North Korea from selling any of its nuclear weapons to terrorists.
SCHLESINGER: Haven’t we learned anything from history? If you think you can negotiate with Ahmadinejad, no, our security is on the line. The guy’s playing cat-and-mouse with us. One day he says he’ll go with the incentives, and the next day not.
LIEBERMAN: I’m proud that I co-sponsored that bipartisan resolution calling for regime change in Iran because there are some leaders you can’t negotiate with. Look at what Ahmadinejad has said. History reminds us in the case of Hitler and Osama bin Laden that they said exactly what they ultimately did. He wants to wipe out Israel and he has told thousands “Imagine a world without the USA; that is possible in our time.” We need to be working with people in Iran, who hate this government, to help them overthrow it.
A: We have a president who is acting as if he is above the law right now. Look at what Guantanamo, look at what Haditha, look at what Abu Ghraib has done to the moral authority of the US. We are a much stronger country when we are true to our values, a much stronger country when it comes to the war on terror when we’re true to what we stand for, and we’ve compromised a lot of that over the last few years, and that weakens our country. I look at the illegal wiretaps. I thought that was a time that Democrats should have stood up and held the president accountable [with censure]. I think we should have said that was wrong.
A: I can’t believe that conservatives and liberals aren’t standing up hand-in-hand and saying that no president is above the law. George Bush is saying “I can wiretap any time I want to, I can be dismissive of our laws of the land that tell me how to do that, and what judicial restraints there ought to be, and I’m gonna do it and just trust me.“ After all the history with this administration, the theory that we would just trust somebody with that type of intrusion into our private lives is beyond me. I think that is [a place] where liberals and conservatives ought to stand up and be heard.