Analysis

Hayden: Situation With North Korea ‘On the Edge’
Former CIA Director Michael Hayden talks to reporters at CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia on January 15, 2009. (AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez)
April 3, 2013
| Security
| Asia and the Pacific
Summary
Former CIA Director Michael Hayden told LIGNET this week that the possibility of North Korea launching a nuclear attack is “somewhere between extremely remote and zero,” but that he believes the current situation with the North is extremely dangerous and is becoming more so by the year. The cycle of threats by North Korea followed by promises of aid must be broken, he said.
 
In this exclusive interview, General Hayden talks about the strategy behind North Korea’s belligerent rhetoric and provides his assessment of whether the Kim Jong Un regime is really intent on conducting an attack.
 
“I think unfortunately, because we’ve acted with tremendous restraint over the past quarter century, we’ve simply taught the North Koreans that they can do these kinds of things with impunity. And now I think we are very much on the edge,” said Hayden in a sit-down interview with LIGNET director Fred Fleitz.
Michael Hayden was the 2oth director of the Central Intelligence Agency, serving from May of 2006 to February of 2009. He was head of the National Security Agency from 1999-2005 and served for almost 39 years in the U.S. Air Force, including two tours in Korea, retiring with the rank of four-star general in 2008. He now works as a consultant with the Chertoff Group and serves on LIGNET’s advisory board.
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