First of all, let me note that I do agree with
the ranking -- or excuse me -- with the chairman of the subcommittee.
I would suggest that it's time for us to get real with Pakistan. And
to the degree that we have -- over my career -- we have bent over
backwards historically for this last 30 years to sort of not to come
to grips with real issues and thus, we've let things fester and it has
gotten progressively worse.
So it's time for us, really, to lay down a standard and say,
what's reality here? And if there are people -- there are leaders in
Pakistan who oppose our getting to the real facts concerning A.Q.
Khan, then those people are not our friends.
The bottom line is if they -- something of that significance, of
that magnitude, if the leaders of Pakistan are not permitting us to
have the type of accountability for this individual and what's been
done, then frankly, those people are not are friends and do not
deserve the type of support that we're trying to give them. Just for
the record -- if you have a disagreement with that, please go straight
The issues that you and Congressman Ackerman
raised were -- should have been dealt with at the outset.
The decision was made by another group of American officials not
to raise them. A new administration came to office on January 2nd
facing a different set of problems. I raised A.Q. Khan immediately
upon my being in Pakistan and I will continue to raise it.
But the issue that Congressman Ackerman raised, and it's a very
important one, is whether we should condition our own strategic
interests -- he linked it to the F-16s, but you've made it an even
broader issue --
-- to this issue.
At this time, there is no evidence that he's actively engaged in
these things anymore. It would be enormously valuable to know what he
did. The ice has frozen over this issue in a sense. I would love to
crack it open.
But Congressman, as we speak -- and as Chairman Berman pointed
out at the beginning -- the enemy of our nation, as well as Pakistan,
is active in the field not too far from the capital. We need to help
Pakistan and we need to weigh the help against the accountability
issues and to find the right balance.
I'm running out of time too. And let me just
note that Pakistan -- if Pakistan is unwilling to work together with
us on something as significant as the nuclear weapons perhaps in the
hands of terrorists who might do harm to the United States, well, then
they do not deserve our help. Let's make it very clear.
If a nuclear weapon goes off in the United States, and it's
because we have not followed through with what this Khan character has
been doing with other radical Islamicists, well, then we have not been
doing due diligence to our own people.
You were in Vietnam, and at that time -- and you mentioned that
-- the support for the Vietnamese battle against us was Russia and
China. We are now at war with radical Islam in Pakistan and
Afghanistan in particular. Where is -- where are the radical
Islamicists who are fighting this war against us getting their
financial support to maintain the struggle?