Take a ride on Scottie’s mobius strip:
Q What do you think of Senator Kerry’s remarks about North Korea in today’s New York Times?
MR. McCLELLAN: Do you have a specific question about it?
Q Well, he said it’s become a nuclear nightmare because the administration has kept its eye on Iraq instead of North Korea.
MR. McCLELLAN: And Senator Kerry would have us return to the failed Clinton administration policy. That failed policy allowed North Korea to dupe the United States. It would be the wrong approach to go down that road again. We see where that leads. The President has all of North Korea’s neighbors actively engaged in a — six-party talks to achieve a diplomatic solution to North Korea’s pursuit of nuclear weapons. The goal is the complete and verifiable end of North Korea’s nuclear program — not a freeze.
Q Scott, on the weapons —
Q — (inaudible) —
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, the 1994 agreed to framework. North Korea did not abide by that framework. They said that they would agree to a freeze on their nuclear weapons programs. And we found that they, in fact, did not freeze their nuclear weapons programs.
Q What have you guys done to make North Korea any less of a threat? Aren’t they as much of a threat now as they —
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, that failed bilateral approach is the wrong way to go. What we did was the President got all the other nations in the region engaged in sending a clear message to North Korea that it needs to end its — that it needs to abandon its nuclear ambitions. All five countries in the region are sending a clear message to North Korea, and they’re all saying that they want a nuclear-free — nuclear weapons-free peninsula.
Q Scott, where is that getting you?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, we’re continuing to make progress through the six-party talks. Those talks are ongoing. We expect that another round of talks will be coming up. And now, for the first time, you have all those nations in the neighborhood actively engaged —
Q Right, but that’s not a new concept. The point is, you don’t have any tangible progress.
MR. McCLELLAN: — in a solution — what this President is doing is confronting all the threats we face. And there are different strategies for confronting different threats. But we are pursuing a plan that will lead to the dismantlement of North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, not a freeze.
Q Besides talk, name one piece of progress that you’ve made.
MR. McCLELLAN: I’m sorry?
Q Besides talk, name one piece of progress —
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, we’ve put forward, now, a dismantlement plan in the last round of talks. We’re waiting on North Korea’s response to those talks.
Q — piece of progress —
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, what we saw over the last decade, under the 1994 agreed to framework was that North Korea had not abandoned its nuclear weapons ambitions. They were continuing to pursue nuclear weapons. So that policy was a failed approach. That’s why the President went to the other nations in the region. China has been very involved in these efforts. China has stepped forward now to say, we want a nuclear weapons-free peninsula. And they’ve been actively engaged in those talks. So we’re continuing to work through those talks and make progress to get North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons ambition.
Q In four years, have you been able to remove one nuclear weapon from North Korea or reduce the threat at all?
MR. McCLELLAN: I’m sorry, what?
Q In four years, have you been able to reduce the threat at all in North Korea? Are they any less dangerous now?
MR. McCLELLAN: It’s an issue that this President is leading the way to confront, by bringing all five parties in the region together in the six-party approach.
…and we’re back where we began.
That was fun.
Actually go and read the whole thing. McClellan sets a new record for avoiding every single question lobbed at him.