Entries in Henry Kissinger (2)


Henry Kissinger ‘Can Understand’ Mitt Romney’s ‘Severe’ Reaction to Mideast Violence

Qamar Sibtain/India Today Group/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Former U.S Secretary of State Henry Kissinger told ABC News on Wednesday that he “can understand” why Mitt Romney’s initial reaction to the violence in the Middle East was “quite severe.”

“I think that an attack on an American embassy is always a grave matter,” Kissinger said in a telephone interview. “When the attacks take place as a result of an event that’s totally out of the control of the United States government, then it is an outrage against our basic values and we cannot -- as a government -- apologize for what these people construe as a provocation if our government was in no way involved.”

Kissinger, who has endorsed Romney and headlined a fundraiser for him this summer in Connecticut, added: “I can understand that the first reaction of Governor Romney was quite severe.”

At a news conference in Florida on Wednesday, Romney said it was "disgraceful that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.”

Romney was referring to a press release from the U.S. Embassy in Cairo criticizing an anti-Muslim movie that was released before the attacks on America’s diplomatic missions in Cairo or Benghazi had taken place.

“I don’t think we ever hesitate when we see something in violation of our principles,” Romney said.

Kissinger, who served under Presidents Nixon and Ford, said that the Obama administration must now “convey to the governments involved that this is a matter that we take extremely seriously.”

The former top diplomat’s advice: “Speaking entirely for myself, it would be appropriate to recall our ambassadors for consultation so that they see we are looking at it carefully.”

At a fundraiser earlier Wednesday in Jacksonville, Fla. Romney invoked Kissinger: “I saw Dr. Kissinger some months ago,” Romney said. “I said, ‘Dr Kissinger, how is America perceived today in the world? He said one word, ‘Weak.’ Weak. The world needs American strength.”

Asked whether Romney would be wise to highlight his differences with President Obama on foreign policy between now and Election Day, Kissinger told ABC News: “I don’t think that Governor Romney should look for opportunities to draw distinction, but where he disagrees and where it’s questions and not just tactics,” it would be appropriate, he said.

Earlier this month, Kissinger co-authored an op-ed in the Washington Times with former secretaries of state Condoleezza Rice, James A. Baker and George P. Shultz in which they endorsed the former Massachusetts governor: “He has the experience, strategy and temperament to lead a robust economic recovery and rein in the mounting federal debt that threatens our future. And he fully understands that our prosperity at home is inextricably linked to our influence abroad.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Herman Cain: Henry Kissinger Job Offer Was a Joke

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(MILWAUKEE) -- Accomplished and controversial former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger is known as a practitioner of realpolitik, but GOP contender Herman Cain says his offer to give him his old job back was nothing more than a real joke.

“Dr. Kissinger turned my offer down to be secretary of state,” Cain, who met Kissinger earlier this month for breakfast and a rapid tutorial on foreign policy, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in an interview posted to the paper’s web site on Tuesday. “He said he’s perfectly happy doing what he’s doing.”

When asked by reporters later Tuesday if he had really offered Kissinger a job, Cain denied it and said he was only kidding.”

Cain said he was only “teasing” about offering Kissinger, 88, who served under Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford, a job in his cabinet were he to win the nomination and the general election.

“Yes I was teasing. I was not serious about asking him because I know he’s retired, but I was serious about seeking his counsel. And he was nice enough to say that I could seek his counsel some more in the future, which I treasure dearly,” Cain said.

After the Kissinger meeting, Cain’s campaign manager Mark Block told the National Review that Kissinger complimented a web video in which Block is seen smoking a cigarette. The ad became a viral Internet sensation.

Cain also named Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C. and former Ambassador John Bolton as people he would appoint to his dream cabinet. But he said the people closest to a President Cain would be businesspeople with private sector experience -- something Cain says could help jolt the economy in a way the Obama administration hasn't.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio