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Dennis Kucinich Interview Transcript 1/30/2013 Part 1

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Rob Kall:   OK.  Let's get back to Fox News, then.  Maybe this is an example of it, and I really wanted to get into hearing a little bit more about what your goals are for participating on Fox.  I know I have a hard time even just leaving the channel on for too long, because it just gets so abrasive and irritating.  What do you think you can accomplish by being a commentator there?  Do you have goals?

Dennis Kucinich:   Well, in accepting, sure.  You have to realize that Fox, perhaps more than any network, over a period of sixteen [16] years, created opportunities for me to come forward to challenge the War in Iraq, the War in Afghanistan, the National Security State, the hegemony of Wall Street over our politics; Fox created those openings so that I could do that.  Now, maybe they wanted me there so that I could be a left foil to a more conservative commentator, but I took the opportunity. 

Now some told me back then, "Why are you doing it?  Why are you going on Fox?"  Look. It's a reality.  They have a huge following, and it's important to be able to communicate with people who may not exactly agree with your point of view, but they have the chance to share your point of view. I will tell you, more so than any other network, they created the opening.  So, as a member of Congress, I took that.  Now, when I left Congress and I was invited to come to New York to discuss the potential of being a part-time contributor, I approached it with the same experience that I had over that period of time, for a period of sixteen years.  As a member of Congress, I had energetic exchanges with Fox hosts?  Absolutely!  Do I think that will continue to happen?  Yeah!  Sure.  Is Fox bringing me on to convert me to a more Conservative point of view?  Well, that's not why they wanted me!  They wanted me on so that they could give me a chance to present the same side and position that I've done before.  And I think it's important to do that. 

If you want to change peoples' minds, you've got to communicate with them;  So to me, that's a significant forum.  I'm well aware of the challenges, but also I think that if someone aspires to be a leader, you can not shy away from such challenges.

Rob Kall:   So do you have any specific goals in terms of the message you want to communicate to the listeners and viewers on Fox?

Dennis Kucinich:   Just so you know, I don't have my own show.  People need to know that.  This isn't a case where I've been given my own show.  I have been invited to be a contributor on the Fox News channel across the board, on a whole range of programs.

Rob Kall:   So that means, basically, that they call you or they email you and say "Hey, we're going to have you on this show, here are the topics, be ready to discuss them."  Something like that.

Dennis Kucinich:   Yes, Exactly.  So, you know, it keeps me on my toes, but I'm there to make a forthright presentation that is fact-based, and also to engage in a give and take which is characteristic of the network.  To me, it's important to be able to communicate with people who may not agree with you.  I've done that throughout my career; and in doing that, I've been able to achieve some real advances in Congress, because I communicated with the Conservatives in Congress.  We almost stopped the war in Libya.  We put together a coalition that, for the first time, began to challenge U.S. foreign policy that's actually working to undermine our country instead of advancing our security interests.  That was a huge development that happened!

Rob Kall:   I think that was the last time we spoke.

Dennis Kucinich:   Yeah, it was.  But if you don't have the ability to communicate with people with whom you disagree, how are you [signal lapse]?  See, that's the way I  look at it.  And again, I am grateful for the opportunity to do so. 

Rob Kall:   Let's take that example you just gave, Libya.  Now, Hillary Clinton just stepped down.  What was your impression of the job she did?  You just criticized the department that she ran.

Dennis Kucinich:   I know Hillary Clinton.  She and I campaigned together.  I like her, and at the same time, she was very instrumental in convincing President Obama to go into Libya, and as such has to take responsibility for what followed.  The events in Benghazi were a triple disaster:  first of all, if Benghazi fell, and the al Qaeda flag flew over their public buildings immediately after it fell - during the Gaddafi era, someone should have understood that "Look, there is a different kind of ballgame here than anyone had thought about."  It actually created an opening for al Qaeda and for Radical Fundamentalists.  It was well known that there was very little control that the "government" of Libya had in Benghazi.  So therefore, the State Department, notwithstanding whatever the Ambassador wanted to do, the State Department in Washington had an obligation to have a very powerful ring of security.  They didn't do that!  And not only that, they were slow to respond when the problems were first notified.  I mean, when people are killed, it breaks your heart, it's a tragedy.  The Ambassador was a very good man who did not deserve to die the way he did.

Rob Kall:   I'm going to interrupt because I had a different question in mind.  I know that Congress, the House, is obsessed with Benghazi, but I was really more talking about, in general, how Hillary did.  She brought the war, like you said, to Libya.  Overall, as the Secretary of State, what was your impression of the job she did? 

Dennis Kucinich:   Well, she didn't work independently of Barack Obama.  The fact of the matter is that the United States has extended aggression into many countries: into Pakistan, into Libya, into Somalia and other countries; and that's through the cooperation of the State Department, the Department of Defense, and the CIA.  Do I, Did I support that policy?  No!  Absolutely not.  But this is a policy that's set by the Obama administration, together with the State Department, the Central Intelligence, and the Department of Defense. 

Rob Kall:   (interjects) So...

Dennis Kucinich:   I want to point something out Rob.  (continues) And in some cases, if you take Libya for example, DoD, through Secretary Gates, opposed it.  He opposed it.  So, the policy is still going to be set by the White House and the Secretary of State is going to carry it out.  She doesn't work independently, but she did have great influence.  No question about it.

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Rob Kall is editor-in-chief, publisher and site architect of OpEdNews.com, President of Futurehealth, Inc, and an inventor. He hosts the Rob Kall Bottom Up Radio Show, aired in the Metro Philly area on AM 1360, WNJC. Over 200 podcasts are archived for downloading here, or can be accessed from iTunes. Rob is also published regularly on the Huffingtonpost.com

Rob Kall Wikipedia Page

Rob is, with Opednews.com the first media winner of the Pillar Award for supporting Whistleblowers and the first amendment.

See more Rob Kall articles here and, older ones, here. To learn more about Rob and OpEdNews.com, check out A Voice For Truth - ROB KALL | OM Times Magazine and this article. For Rob's work in non-political realms mostly before 2000, see his C.V..  and here's an article on the Storycon Summit Meeting he founded and organized for eight years. Press coverage in the Wall Street Journal: Party's Left Pushes for a Seat at the Table

Here is a one hour radio interview where Rob was a guest- on Envision This, and here is the transcript. 

To watch Rob having a lively conversation with John Conyers, then Chair of the House Judiciary committee, click hereWatch Rob speaking on Bottom up economics at the Occupy G8 Economic Summit, here.

Follow Rob on Twitter & Facebook. His quotes are here

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