Date: December 14, 2017
Host: Jim Schneider
Guest: Frank Gaffney
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Frank Gaffney is the founder, president and CEO of the Center for Security Policy, a not-for-profit, non-partisan educational corporation. He’s a national security expert and served in the Reagan administration as the assistant secretary of defense for international security policy. He’s the lead author of ‘War Footing: Ten Steps America Must Take to Prevail in the War for the Free World’, co-author of ‘Sharia: The Threat to America’ and other titles as well.
President Trump recently signed into law the 700 billion dollar 2018 National Defense Authorization Act. Through this the president appears to be promising a major military buildup. Does Frank believe this hits the mark or does this miss it?
Frank believes this legislation is a positive step in the right direction after decades of benign neglect by the two Bush administrations, and at worst, a wrecking operation against our military by the Obama administration.
On Israel, Frank sees the desire to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem as significant because it recognizes reality. That reality is that Israel has won repeatedly in a succession of wars. He believes that as we indulge in the fantasy and false narrative that the Palestinians are entitled to all of this land, they want to drive the Jews into the sea and they actually haven’t been defeated, the more you’ll find them behaving in the way they have all these years. That includes engaging in jihadist behavior, not just against Israel, but against Americans and others who are on our side.
Yesterday, Ambassador Nikki Haley indicated she has irrefutable evidence that Iran deliberately violated the so-called ‘Iran Deal’. Frank has not seen the evidence Haley speaks of, but he thinks what she’s pointing out is that Iran has been collaborating with North Korea to acquire nuclear weapons technology and capability and the missiles with which to deliver that. President Obama gave Iran 150 billion dollars, some of which Frank believes is migrating to North Korea, while he believes North Korea is possibly sharing nuclear missiles with Iran.
Does Frank see any subsiding of tensions between the U.S. and North Korea? Is the solution to take the diplomatic route or is it peace through strength? Frank communicated that we’ve sought a diplomatic solution for a long time. Diplomacy has been used by the North Korean’s to buy time as well as to obtain the resources that’s enabled them to continue to build the threats that confront our nation. In essence, he believes diplomacy has been a failure up to this point, yet the alternative can be very costly in terms of lives lost. Unfortunately, we may have no other choice but to act preemptively to protect our nation.
Does China have any culpability in all of this? Successive administrations have told us that China is our partner in trying to contain the North Korean threat. Frank has never believed that and it’s become increasingly apparent that China has actually been enabling this threat. Frank described the contrast this way: North Korea has made advances in nuclear weapons technology, yet this is coming from an impoverished, backward nation. They could not possibly do this by themselves. In other words, Frank believes North Korea has been benefiting in this way from China. So far from being a partner, he believes China is enabling this threat.
Russia and China are aggressively expanding their nuclear arsenal. Are we keeping up with this? Do we recognize this threat? Having worked for the Reagan administration, he recognizes how that was the ‘heyday’ of America’s attentiveness to the need to have a reliable, safe, effective and credible nuclear deterrent. Ever since, we’ve been neglecting our nuclear arsenal. In fact, we haven’t even tested an underground nuclear weapon since 1992 and have scarcely done any modernization. So we’re basically living off the legacy of what was accomplished during the Reagan years.