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Face the Nation Transcripts July 27, 2014: Netanyahu, Mashaal, Klimkin, Rogers, Albright

The latest on the fighting in Ukraine and the Gaza Strip, plus an in-depth look at the 2014 midterm election landscape
July 27: Netanyahu, Mashaal, Klimkin, Rogers 47:13

(CBS News) -- Below is transcript of the July 27 edition of Face the Nation. Guests include: Barry Petersen, Benjamin Netanyahu, Pavlo Klimkin, Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal, Mike Rogers, Madeleine Albright, Margaret Brennan, Anthony Salvanto, John Dickerson, Amy Walter, and David Leonhardt.

BOB SCHIEFFER, HOST: I'm Bob Schieffer.And today on the FACE THE NATION: The cease-fire in Gaza is over. There is intense fighting in Eastern Ukraine. And all American diplomats are safely out of Libya. We will hear this morning from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Mike Rogers, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, plus an excerpt of Charlie Rose's interview with Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal in Doha. And we begin Battleground Tracker, a joint project with "The New York Times" to gauge the political mood in America and what to expect in the midterm elections. Sixty years of news, because this is FACE THE NATION. Good morning again. We start today in the Middle East, where hostilities resumed after the temporary humanitarian cease-fire. Barry Petersen joins us this morning from Gaza City -- Barry.

BARRY PETERSEN, CBS NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Bob. Well, all this talk about maybe another cease-fire or extension, both sides can't seem to quite get it together. I will tell you personally, do not take it to the bank. We had an incident near where we are staying. The Israelis laid down white smoke. That is their way of sending a warning. Several minutes later, they hit the neighborhood hard. We know this area because we have seen some Hamas rockets being fired into Israel. So, yes, it is a legitimate target, also a civilian area. I will say that when there is a cease-fire, Gaza springs back to life. The main market, which was basically abandoned during the shelling, was full of people selling produce and fruit. My favorite moment? Coming across the kids in a playground. They had flocked into the playground, filled the area. It was lovely to hear the laughter of children because what we get most of the time around here is the boom of artillery -- Bob.

SCHIEFFER: Barry Petersen, thank you, so much, Barry.

And joining us now from Jerusalem, the prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu.

Prime Minister, thank you so much. We hear first that a cease- fire turned down. Then another one is called for. And now, apparently, that one is off, too. What is the very latest?

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: Look, Israel has accepted, Bob, five cease-fires up to now. We accepted them and we implemented them. Hamas has rejected every single one of them and violated every single one of them, including two humanitarian cease- fires, which we accepted and implemented in the last 24 hours.

Now they floated a cease-fire proposal. And you know what? This is quite astounding, Bob. They violated their own cease-fire and they're firing at us as we speak. So, Israel is not obliged and will not let a terrorist organization, a ruthless terrorist organization committed to our destruction, to decide when it's convenient for them to stop for a moment to rearm and continuing fires on our citizens and our people.

We will determine what is important for our own security and the way that we can to protect our people, including working against these terror tunnels that they are digging against us. That is how we will act. We will just act to protect our people.

SCHIEFFER: So, will you increase the ground offensive inside the Gaza? Or what -- what is the next step here, Prime Minister?

NETANYAHU: I'm not going to talk about military operations. I will say we have a right to defend ourselves. You have to just imagine the United States having 80 percent of its population under rocket fire and 80 percent of your people having to go to a bomb shelter every -- within 60 or 90 seconds.

That is unsustainable. We have -- imagine the United States having terror tunnels dug underneath your border in order to come in and explode your kindergartens or murder and kidnap your citizens. Imagine attacks by land, by sea and by air. Obviously, you would take whatever action is necessary to protect your people. And that is essentially what Israel is doing.

I can't go into more information than that. I hope, I hope we achieve a sustainable quiet that will enable us to address the issue of demilitarizing Gaza, because I think that's the real issue. How do we demilitarize Gaza?

And if Hamas is weakened, discredited and demilitarized, then we may have a chance to work something with the more moderate forces and get a better future for all of us.

SCHIEFFER: Prime Minister, I know you have been concerned about these tunnels for a long time, and you have known they were up to something there.

But was this underground complex more extensive than even you had thought it was?

NETANYAHU: Well, we knew about the terror tunnels, more or less the size of it.

We are obviously getting more information now, precise information. But what you see is this vast underground terror kingdom, these vast tunnels in which they poured in tens of thousands of tons of concrete. You know, people were saying, bring concrete to Gaza, bring cement to Gaza to help rebuild Gaza.

And what Hamas did was take all that cement, all that concrete and put it into the tunnels that are meant to come in under our communities and blow up our kids and kidnap our people. I think -- that is why I think that the economic and social relief that people want to have for Gaza and that we want to have for the people of Gaza once this is over is tied to demilitarization.

We would have to, as this example shows, make sure that concrete that is brought in is not abused and brought to dig in new tunnels. We would have to make sure that money that that people want to go for the people of Gaza for their social relief -- and we have no objection to that -- is not used for buying rockets and missiles and drones and everything else that Hamas is using against us.

I think that what we need is demilitarization of Gaza and alongside economic and social relief for the people of Gaza. But the economic and social relief for the people of Gaza I think is tied to demilitarization.

SCHIEFFER: Prime Minister, when you say demilitarization, what exactly does that mean? Does that mean Israeli troops go back in there and keep the peace? Obviously, you are talking about shutting down these tunnels, but what does that really mean?

NETANYAHU: I think that has to be discussed as part of the overriding goal, because, otherwise, we will find ourselves -- we could find ourselves in the same situation.

I think once we get the Egyptian initiative, which basically calls for an unconditional effort to try to address these problems, I think that, once we get into that, we will have to discuss the means of actually making sure that Gaza is not remilitarized. How do we prevent stuff from coming in? What do we tie in vis-a-vis social and economic relief?

How do we make sure that and money or materials that go in are not used for remilitarizing Gaza? There are ways of doing this. I think it's important to put that out as an overriding goal. And it will have to be discussed in Egypt when the time comes.

SCHIEFFER: Prime Minister, let me ask you this. Many people agree with and sympathize with your determination to stop these attacks on your people. That is very understandable.

But they are also worried that every time the world sees these pictures of these children being hurt and killed, that you may be losing the battle for world opinion. How do you respond to that?

NETANYAHU: Well, I think this gets to the essence of Hamas' strategy.

Hamas is responsible for these civilian deaths. Hamas is not only trying to kill our people. It's sacrificing its own people, quite willfully, deliberately, cynically, and horribly. They are using their people as human shields. We ask the people to leave, the civilians to leave. They ask them to stay.

Why are they asking them to stay? Because they want the bodies of the Palestinian civilians to pile up. And every time we see a dead civilian, we regret it deeply. Nobody can not -- can fail to have the feelings of regret and sorrow when you see these things.

But the blame should be placed where it belongs, at Hamas' door, because Hamas actually wants to have more and more Palestinian civilians killed. And that is why they are using them as human shields. I think that should be condemned.

I recognize what you say about world opinion, but I can only appeal to decent people everywhere and tell them, if you are concerned about civilian lives, it's not because of Israel. Israel is not targeting a single civilian. It's Hamas that wants to have Palestinian civilians killed. And it's Hamas that should be squarely blamed.

SCHIEFFER: Prime Minister, thank you so much for taking time to tell the American people the very latest on this. Thank you, sir.

NETANYAHU: Thank you.

SCHIEFFER: CBS News "This Morning" co-host Charlie Rose sat down yesterday at Doha, Qatar, with the leader of Hamas, Khaled Meshaal. He went directly to the question, what does Hamas want?


KHALED MESHAAL, HAMAS LEADER (through translator): The war in Gaza sends two messages, Mr. Charles, to the world. The first message, it is high time to lift the siege on Gaza. Gaza wants to live...


MESHAAL: ... other people.

CHARLIE ROSE, CBS NEWS ANCHOR: That is exactly what Secretary Kerry has asked to be negotiated after the cease-fire, to have a week of cease-fire. So you could do that.

But you are asking that to be done as a precondition to the negotiations.

MESHAAL (through translator): This is not a prerequisite. Life is not a prerequisite. Life is a right for our people in Palestine.

Since 2006, when the world refused the outcomes of the elections, our people actually lived under the siege of eight years. It is -- this is a collective punishment. We need to lift the siege. We have to have a port. We have to have an airport.

This is the first message. The second message, in order to stop the bloodletting, we need to look at the underlying causes. We need to look at the occupation. We need to stop the occupation. Netanyahu doesn't take heed of our rights.

Mr. Kerry months ago tried to find a window through the negotiations in order to meet our target, to live without occupation, to reach our state. Netanyahu has killed our hope or killed our dream. And he killed the American initiative.

...We are not fanatics. We are not fundamentalists. We do not actually fight the Jews because they are Jews, per se. We do not fight any other races. We fight the occupiers.

On the contrary, we actually respect the religious people. We ask for tolerance, for coexistence. The Buddhists, the Jews, the Christians and the Muslims, as you know, God created us as nations. We are different. And the Koran says that in order for the nations to live together and coexist...


MESHAAL (through translator): ... without occupation and without any blockade.

ROSE: I think I just heard you say -- and this -- we will close on this -- you believe in the coexistence of peoples, and, therefore, you believe in the coexistence of Palestinians and Israelis in the Middle East?

MESHAAL (through translator): I can't coexist with occupation.

ROSE: Without occupation, you can coexist?


MESHAAL (through translator): I'm ready to coexist with the Jews, with the Christians and with the Arabs and non-Arabs and with those who agree with my ideas and those who disagree with them.

However, I do not coexist with the occupiers, with the settlers, and those who...


ROSE: It's one thing to say you want to coexist with the Jews. It's another thing you want to coexist with the state of Israel. Do you want to coexist with the state of Israel? Do you want to represent -- do you want to recognize Israel as a Jewish state?

MESHAAL (through translator): No. I said I do not want to live with a state of occupiers. I do coexist with other...


ROSE: I'm assuming they're no longer occupiers. At that point, do you want to coexist and recognize their right to exist, as they would recognize your right to exist?

MESHAAL (through translator): When we have a Palestinian state, then the Palestinian state will decide on its policies.

But you cannot actually ask me about the future. I answered you. But Palestinian people can have their say when they have their own state without occupation. In natural situations, they can decide policy vis-a-vis others.

ROSE: Thank you.

MESHAAL (through translator): Welcome.


SCHIEFFER: So, more of Charlie's interview tomorrow morning on "CBS THIS MORNING," and the entire one-hour interview tomorrow night on "The Charlie Rose Show" on PBS.

We want to turn now to the other major story this morning, the battle in Ukraine, where government forces have begun a new battle against Russian-backed separatist rebels backed by Moscow for the key city of Donetsk in the country's eastern region.

And joining us to give us the latest on that is Ukraine's foreign minister, Pavlo Klimkin.

Mr. Foreign Minister, thank you so much.

So, let me just ask you. Now, your forces are trying to take back Donetsk. Do you have the military wherewithal to do that?


And my first point and very clear point, we are the people of peace. We are for the peaceful settlement. And we are quite confident that we could negotiate a peaceful settlement with everyone, with the people of Donbass. But we can't negotiate directly, of course, with the terrorists who shot down the plane, who have been killing people, taking hostages, taking the -- even the small pensions from the old and vulnerable people.

It's exactly the point. And the main leaders of the terrorists, they're Russian citizens with different connections with Russian special services. And our message is quite clear. We need the bilateral cease-fire. We need -- we don't need military offensive. We need bilateral cease-fire. We need, of course, clear control of the border, because everything is coming to Ukraine across the border, not just mercenaries and money, but of course the weapons and heavy weaponry.

And, of course, we have -- we need a clear idea how to reach a peaceful settlement. And we have a peace plan for that.

SCHIEFFER: Well, let me ask you this. What do you think President Putin is up to here? What is he trying to do?

KLIMKIN: You know, if you see the Donetsk and Donbass, it is our land. And who does need Donbass, with all the heavy industries there?

It is about a clear attempt of destabilizing the Eastern Ukraine. It's about disrupting any kind of critical infrastructure. If you are even theoretically separatist, you would like more independence, and you would like to reform your own plans. But why is to disrupt all kinds of infrastructure, electricity, natural water and gas pipelines.

So it's about a clear idea how to destabilize Eastern Ukraine and through the Eastern Ukraine probably the whole Ukraine. It's not just about Eastern Ukraine and Ukraine. It's my point.


SCHIEFFER: What can the United States -- would you like to see the United States do right now?

KLIMKIN: We see the United States as a friend and partner. And we have also solidarity from the United States.

What we need now is to make Ukraine a success. We are fully committed to freedom. We are fully committed to the rule of law. It is a difficult financial situation in Ukraine also because of ongoing developments in the Eastern Ukraine. So we need U.S. assistance for success -- successful economic reforms, for the reforms in the sphere of rule of law.

But we also need more assistance on the ground also for our forces. So it's the kind of package we need to make Ukraine successful, to make Ukraine united, democratic and European country.

SCHIEFFER: Is it -- there any doubt in your mind that the Russians are responsible for the shooting down of that airliner?

KLIMKIN: Imagine you can buy a rifle, a Kalashnikov, on the black market, but how can you buy on the black market highly sophisticated anti-air missile capable to shoot down the planes at the altitude of 10,000 meters?

And if then, can you imagine that the terrorists could operate highly sophisticated weapons there? So, it is, of course, about responsibility of those who bring also across the border all inflow of weapons and weaponry. And it has to stop. And it's one of the preconditions for successful and peaceful settlement in the Eastern Ukraine.

SCHIEFFER: Mr. Prime Minister (sic), thank you for joining us. And we wish you the very best.

KLIMKIN: Thank you.

SCHIEFFER: We will be back in a minute.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) SCHIEFFER: Well, joining us now to tell us what he knows about all of this, one of the most knowledgeable members of the House of Representatives, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Mike Rogers.

Mr. Chairman, let's just go back to Israel for a minute. Hamas continues to fire these rockets. They have poured all this concrete, as you heard Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu talk about. Where are they getting this stuff?


And there is an interesting development on this front. Iran is publicly in their own newspapers touting the fact that they are helping militarize Hamas in the Gaza Strip. And now the Qataris are saying, hey, we want to pull Iran away from that, and we want to support, which is a dangerous combination for Israel.

So, you have this two-front combination. The Qataris are certainly engaged. We believe that some of this money is coming from Saudi Arabia, no the official government, but from other sources. And so that money -- and they pilfer money that is coming in from legitimate purposes to divert to tunnels.

So, if you think about how obscene that is, the hundreds of millions of dollars they have had over a decade, 20 percent of the people in Gaza Strip are not connected to a water source; 90 percent of all the water there does not meet international standards. But they have got -- I think the Israelis just closed 35 tunnels.

So, they are diverting legitimate money, and you have Iran that is maligned into this particular interest in a way that is very, very dangerous

SCHIEFFER: But I thought the Qataris were our allies here ?

ROGERS: Well, this is what makes this region so interesting.

So, you have Iran and the Qataris are supporting Hamas, and certainly factions thereof. They're also supporting places in Syria. So, that is why this is so intertwined in a way that makes it a very dangerous stew, indeed.

It is one common thing that the Shias and the Sunnis do not like, and that is a Jewish Israel state. That is confirmed. And I think they have found an outlet to try to do this. And it's spreading to other areas, Bob. This is what is the other problem. There is the unseen war in this particular event, and that is the new cyber front.

There are not only what you see coming from Hamas, attacks on Israel, but now we have nation states engaged in the region in cyber- conflict that could cause this to escalate in a way that is very, very dangerous for stability.

SCHIEFFER: How much do you think they have? How much money do you think has been poured into these tunnels? It's literally millions of dollars which, as I understand it, came in there to build schools and things of that nature. ROGERS: Well, again, I think they diverted some of the legitimate money. Clearly, that happened. Instead of building wells or water infrastructure, they diverted that money to build these tunnels.

And I think that they are getting money again from Iran, who has been a maligned force in that whole entire region. Think about it. They are putting Hezbollah in the fight in Syria and supplying Hamas in the Gaza Strip with weapons. That is the difficult part here.

And what is concerning about that is just about 10 days ago or so, the United States agreed to allow Iran to have another $2.8 billion released just for them to continue nuclear negotiations. And that is what is so frustrating with the administration now.

All of this works together. You can't just pick and choose one particular region. It has to work in concert. When you free up $2.8 billion for Iran, when they are already cash-strapped because of sanctions, that means they can continue to do bad activities in the Gaza Strip, including missile -- we believe, at least missile components. What they have -- we understand, according to public reports, they have even offered to help hide those missile systems, and their work in Syria with supporting the Assad regime.

It's not working in concert that is helping us cause this confusion around the Middle East.

SCHIEFFER: Well, Congressman, I want to tell you, you have explained and made this thing even more dire than I understood it at the beginning of this broadcast.

I want to thank you very much for coming by and filling us in.

ROGERS: Thanks, Bob.

SCHIEFFER: Always good.

I will be back with some personal thoughts in just a moment.


SCHIEFFER: Trying to understand the news of this terrible summer, it's hard to come away with any feeling, but that we are in the midst of a world gone mad.

On one side of the world, an ego-driven Russian leader seems to yearn for the time of the czars, when rulers started wars on a whim or a perceived insult, and, if people died, so be it.

In the Middle East, the Palestinian people find themselves in the grip of a terrorist group that has embarked on a strategy to get its own children killed in order to build sympathy for its cause, a strategy that might actually be working, at least in some quarters.

Last week, I found a quote of many years ago by Golda Meir, one of Israel's early leaders, which might have been said yesterday. "We can forgive the Arabs for killing our children," she said, "but we can never forgive them for forcing us to kill their children."

In a world gone mad, what is to be learned? Perhaps we should start by remembering what historian Will Durant once said. "Barbarism, like the jungle, does not die out, but only retreats behind the barriers that civilization has thrown up against it, and waits there always to reclaim that to which civilization has temporarily laid claim."

Back in a minute.


SCHIEFFER: Some of our stations are leaving us now, but, for most of you, we will be right back with a lot more FACE THE NATION, including an interview with former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

So, stay with us.


SCHIEFFER: To former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. Madam Secretary, we're very happy to have you and to get -- help us to try to understand.

Have you ever -- I mean I can remember times when the nation, I thought, was coming apart, 1968 and the -- the battle over -- over Vietnam and all of that, the '68 Democratic Convention.

But can you recall a time when there was so much trouble in so many different places around the world?

MADELEINE ALBRIGHT, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: Well, first of all, it's good to be with you, Bob.

But I -- I think that the fact that this is happening in so many different parts of the world, we all grew up in a very different era, where we were focused on the threat from the Soviet Union and that was the major activity. And it clearly was dangerous.

But what has happened now is that we are seeing problems in a variety of places, some of it due to globalization, frankly, which has a opposite side hat has caused a lot of nationalism in those countries that -- or places where people feel lost within kind of the facelessness of globalization.

And then because of technology, because there is so much connectivity, but also not an understanding of all the various pieces of the news that come into us.

SCHIEFFER: But, you know, I mean we -- we have so much going on right now. It's almost like we're caught up in events out of control that we haven't until this second, when I'm going to bring it up, had time to even talk about the shutting down of the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, Libya, because these Americans here were caught in the middle of, basically, a fight among militias. I'm happy to report that they all got safely out.

The secretary of State says that's just temporary. But almost no attention to that.

We haven't talked very much in the last week or so about what's going on in Syria, of all places. And that is just a -- a slaughterhouse, apparently.

ALBRIGHT: Well, there are two really different things going on. And I think partially, Bob, in the diplomatic world, there's something going on all the time. And it is the job of diplomats to manage it.

But there have been, really, two huge game-changers. And one is Putin's behavior vis-a-vis first Crimea and then now toward Ukraine and a completely different kind of behavior by Russia.

And the other is what is happening in the Middle East, a lot of it due to the Arab awakening and also the artificiality of the borders that were established after World War I.

So these are huge game-changers. And we are, a lot of Americans, trying to figure out where the countries are. Most Americans knew very little about Islam. They certainly didn't know the difference between Shia and Sunni.

So there are an awful lot of things going on that need understanding and explanation. But to put it mildly, the world is a mess.

SCHIEFFER: What is your take on Putin right now?

What do you think he's up to?

What does he want?

How can we get his attention, because right now, he seems to be thumbing his nose at us, even though we continue to put sanctions on him?

ALBRIGHT: I think that Putin is living in his own world. He has made up an awful lot of lies in terms of who is responsible for the fact that the Soviet Union disintegrated. He actually called that the greatest disaster of the 20th century. Hard to believe, when there were two world wars that killed millions of people, among them, Russians. So that's the first lie.

And then he has, in fact, propagandized all that through his own country and then into Central and Eastern Europe.

I think what he wants to do is to reestablish himself as the identification of Russian nationalism and then also do to everything he can to kind of reestablish something akin to the Soviet Union, obviously, not that, but a grouping of countries around Russia that are completely subservient to him and to Moscow.

And until he can get that, he's going to work to destabilize Eastern Europe.

SCHIEFFER: Talk a little bit about what's going on in Israel right now.

If you were the secretary of State right now, what would you be telling the president?

What can the United States do here?

ALBRIGHT: Well, let me say, I so admire Secretary Kerry for all the effort he's put into this. I think all of us, as Secretaries, had worked very hard on it.

But it is a tough proposition.

We actually know what the solution is. President Clinton laid that out before he left. And it's a two-state solution and a number of other aspects to it.

The United States can put down all kinds of plans, but until there is political will between the parties themselves, it's very hard to have anything happen.

But I think Secretary Kerry is doing everything he can at this moment to kind of prolong the short peaceful cease-fires or humanitarian cease-fires and then see whether he can get them back to the table.

But the problem, as we heard in the Charlie Rose interview, is what are the preconditions for even getting to discussing the conditions?

So it's a tough sell for everybody.

SCHIEFFER: But, you know, listening to the Hamas leader talking to Charlie Rose, and he said, yes, we can coexist with the Jews. But he said we -- we can't coexist with the Jewish state. And Charlie said, well, but how do you go from -- well, he said, we'll decide after we get our state whether we can coexist with the Jewish state.

It sounds to me like these two sides are as far apart as they have ever been.

ALBRIGHT: I -- I think they are. I think -- and certainly that sounded like double-talk to me.

But the bottom line is, they are seeing each other's problems from the completely negative side. And what you need to do in diplomacy is at least try to put yourself into the other person's shoes.

And they are definitely not doing that. And they are propagandizing, the Hamas is definitely trying to persuade its population that everything is the fault of Israel, which I think is unfair.

Israel has a right to protect itself. But I think that it is -- they are far apart. They are definitely.

SCHIEFFER: Is Israel in danger -- and I talked to the prime minister about that this morning. I -- I totally understood his point of view. I -- in fact, I agree with it, they -- no country would allow another country or another group of people to fire rockets in there.

But as these horrible pictures continue to come on television, are they in danger of losing this battle for world opinion, because they're winning?

ALBRIGHT: I think the quote that you have from Golda Meir is so stunning and as you pointed out, it could be said today. And than there was this incredible movie called "The Gatekeepers" where a lot of military people had -- really were so sad about how they had been made to be more cruel as a result of a lot of the things that were going on.

I am concerned about Israel. I am a great believer in the security of Israel and the moral authority of the Israelis.

But I am very worried about what is going on in terms of their image.

SCHIEFFER: Let me ask you about something else and how things look on television. The president has gotten a lot of criticism lately for going to all these fundraisers. Every time you turn on the TV, he's en route to a fundraiser, even though these horrible things are happening around the world.

Is that criticism fair?

If you were in the White House now, would you say, Mr. President, maybe you ought to dial back a little bit on that part?

ALBRIGHT: I don't think it's fair. I do know the following thing, that a president does not travel alone. Not only is there a lot of equipment that goes with him that allows him to be in contact. And he has his advisers around him.

I also do think that would not want to operate in a way that the United States kind of decides that there's nothing we can do until -- unless, of course, it's foreign policy. And I disagree with that.

I do think that the United States has to be engaged. I have believed that. I have called us the indispensable nation, which means that the U.S. has to be at the table. And the president, I know, has been on the phone. He has been working in a number of ways to push and he -- and you can see that in terms of the -- not just the phone calls, but meetings and a variety of ways.

So I don't think it's fair.

SCHIEFFER: You know, rightly or wrongly -- and I take your point -- there is a perception, it seems to me, that in many parts of the world, there is an impression that the United States is somehow stepping back.

ALBRIGHT: I -- I don't -- I read that myself. But I don't believe it. I think that the thing that has changed is we are not -- we don't want to be the world's policeman. The American people don't. And I think that what has to happen is to really work harder on the variety of partnerships.

When I said indispensable, again, not alone. It requires partners. It requires sometimes being at the table, speaking first. Sometimes speaking last, motivating others to do the -- the things with us.

And prev -- in the first part of the program, you talked a lot about Europeans. The president has been pushing the Europeans. The Europeans have to step up.

I am appalled, frankly, at the slowness of the Europeans in understanding what is going on in Europe itself, in being not only supportive, but being genuine partners in pushing on what Putin is doing, on supporting Ukraine, on making clear that the kind of behavior that Putin engaged in is illegal and that we have a responsibility together, and the United States, together with our partners, I think, is very much in the lead.

SCHIEFFER: Madeleine Albright, it's always great to get your perspective.

Thank you so much for spending this time with us.

We'll be right back.


SCHIEFFER: Well, we are going to have analysis now from one of the busiest people at CBS News and that is our State department correspondent Margaret Brennan who is logging more miles than an airline captain these days. She is just back, about in what, about 11:00 or 12:00 last night.

MARGARET BRENNAN, CBS NEWS CORREPSONDENT: Landed after midnight with Secretary Kerry last night.

SCHIEFFER: So Margaret, what is the secretary's mood right now? Where does he think we are on any of this?

BRENNAN: Well, the secretary left the Middle East with no firm cease-fire agreement in hand, but the hope that you could see short- term rolling cease-fires that could ultimately end up with both sides stopping from killing each other long enough to agree maybe it's worth talking.

But it's not clear really what was agreed. And that is going to be played out on the ground.

But what we do see, and what Kerry's message to the Israeli prime minister really was is that you may be winning the war against Hamas, but more broadly you are losing the war in Gaza, which is Palestinians are watching fellow Palestinians get killed. You saw massive protests in the West Bank while we were there in the Middle East, that there's outcry around the Arab world and that vote at the UN was not insignificant and the United States that stood with Israel and said they don't want to see an inquiry of these accusations of human rights abuses.

So for them, the United States, they're saying look beyond this immediate conflict, we need to talk and have negotiations about a broader settlement here that addresses some of the real security issues longer term.

SHIEFFER: And what about Putin? What is the latest news on that? Do we think we are anywhere close to even getting his attention?

BRENNAN: Well, it's been costly for him to do what he is doing but it certainly hasn't stopped him from carrying out and helping to buttress some of those Russian troops they have at the Ukrainian border. The State Department just this morning released some of these images of what they say is proof that Russian artillery has been helping and firing and supplementing some of those separatists cross border, which is to say this isn't just Russia backing the separatists, this is Russia fighting for the separatists.

So, it's really not clear. I mean, the strategy doesn't seem to have changed it's just about sanctions right now. It's about punitive rather than preventative measures and the Europeans are very slow to react.

SCHIEFFER: And what about the situation in Tripoli? In Libya? We did get the diplomats out of there. Is there anything we don't know about that, anything -- a back story here?

BRENNAN: Well, there is a lot of concern in the region. This is one of the things that Secretary Kerry was talking about in Cairo with Egyptian officials is they're looking next door to Libya and very concerned about the terror threat emanating from there and that country really being on the brink of civil war.

The administration is very sensitive, of course, to the security of diplomats in Libya particularly after what happened in Benghazi with the attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission there.

So, while they said there is no direct threat against diplomatic personnel or the embassy, they got the diplomats out because they see the militias fighting very close proximity to the U.S. embassy itself. When they are going back is totally unclear

SCHIEFFER: Well, we are going to let you go home. You might want to take a nap this afternoon, because I know you are going to be on the road again pretty soon.

BRENNAN: No doubt.

SCHIEFFER: Thank you very much, Margaret. We will be back to talk about campaign 2014. We will look at that in a minute.


SCHIEFFER: Anthony Salvanto is our CBS News elections director, David Leonhardt is the director of The New York Times Upshot, rounding out our analysis will be Amy Walter of the Cook Political Report and John Dickerson our own CBS News political director.

So Anthony, the big question if the election were held today, based on the data that you all have assembled, the big question is would the Democrats hold their majority in the Senate?

ANTHONY SALVANTO, CBS NEWS ELECTIONS DIRECTOR: No, our estimate has the Republicans taking it at least 51-49. And there is a little bit of movement maybe towards 52-53 in some scenarios there.

But Republicans we find have this edge because they so many options, because there are so many states in play now. We always knew that the Democrats would have a hard time holding a lot of these southern states, these conservative states where there is a lot of Senate races and they're defending more seats. But we see a very expansive map out of this data. We see a lot of races that are very, very tight, too.

SCHIEFFER: So six seats Republicans would have to hold all that they've got and then pick up six seats to claim the majority is that right?

SALVANTO: That is right. And we think they have an inside track, or even a certainty on at least two or three of them. So, they really just need to get a couple more.

Now pushing back against this a little bit, though, is the Democrats would like to try to take Kentucky. They would like to take the Georgia seat and they think they have good candidates there, but right now in our polling they are just a little short

SCHIEFFER: OK so, David what are the races Democrats and the two independents in the senate hold 55 senate seats, Republicans 45. What are the races that will have to change that if the Republicans do in fact take control?

DAVID LEONARDT, NEW YORK TIMES: The thing to remember is the Senators run every six years. So the people running for election now ran six years ago, 2008, a year of a Democratic wave, the Obama wave. and so you have got a lot of races in Republican-leaning states most of the time and that is the problem for Democrats here. So it's North Carolina, where Kay Hagan is running a tough reelection campaign, it's Arkansas with the same with Mark Pryor, it's Alaska. We are talking about states that in the presidential elections vote Republican.

And so essentially, although many things can happen, the Democrats still have a good chance to keep it. The reason we think Republicans are favored are if each of these states simply go the way it goes in the presidential election, Republicans get Senate control

SCHIEFFER: I would say at this point it would appear if the election were held, the Democrats would probably lose Montana, and probably lose South Dakota, probably lose West Virginia.

Good news for the Democrats if the election were held today, would probably hold their seats in New Hampshire and Colorado.

And Anthony you are talking about that race in Kentucky and also the race down in Georgia where Sam Nunn's daughter Michelle Nunn is the Democratic candidate.

Talk a little bit about those races, David.

LEONARDT: So, I think Kentucky -- I think Kentucky is a pretty tough task for the Democrats. I think Mitch McConnell should be considered a pretty strong favorite.

A state that is as strongly as Republican as Kentucky the idea that flipping to the president's party in a mid-term election would be exceedingly unusual from political history.

So I think Kentucky is a really tough for the Democrats, not impossible but tough.

Georgia is easier. And it's in part because of demographic change. Georgia has a growing Latino population, black turnout has risen a lot. And so while I think Michelle Nunn is probably a slight underdog, she has a real shot to win that race, which would be very important for the Democrats.

SALBANTO: You know, Bob, one of the things we see out of this is that with so many tight races, one point, two points here and there, yes our estimates point in one direction at this point, and we should think of this as a baseline. We are not trying to make predictions here, we're trying to gauge with this panel where we are today. But it tells me that the local campaigns are really going to matter, because one or two points here can move easily.

I mean, we are going to track this and I suspect we will come back here through the fall and see back and forth, which should be pretty fun to watch.

SCHIEFFER: I want to bring in Amy and John.

Amy, what -- is there anything that ties all these races together? Is this going to be any kind of a wave election as we call it? Or are these all individual races?

AMY WALTER, COOK POLITICAL ALERT: Well, clearly what we are seeing in these numbers is that if there is good news here for Republicans is that the environment is very good for the Republicans, right? The president's overall approval rating low, the enthusiasm on the part of Republicans much higher to turnout vote and vote than for Democrats. People aren't feeling very good about the direction of the country and as we pointed out, so many of these states are red states carried by Mitt Romney, so that all goes to the benefit of Republicans.

What is standing in their way -- standing in Republicans way, in many cases are Republicans themselves. We saw them in 2010 and 2012 lose what were supposed to be slam dunk seats because their candidates were terrible. Candidates matter, campaigns matter and this is where Democrats say the other thing that matters is that Republicans' approval rating is much lower than it was in 2010.

This is a very different kind of environment People see Republicans in control of the House and they don't like what they see. And so that is the one thing that Democrats have.

The other thing is that they know how to go and work on the ground. They say Barack Obama that campaign they revolutionized the way we go and target and turnout voters. You are not going to be able to see any of that in polling. The only way you will be able to see it is actually when we get the election day results.

JOHN DICKERSON, CBS NEWS POLITICAL DIRECTOR: And so when people in these states, these key Senate states are watching this election they are going to have the feeling of disappointment. They are not going to hear people talking about what you have been talking about on the show all day today, the things that are roiling the world. They may not even hear the things that roil us at home, because Democrats to push back against this national wave, all these advantages -- and I'd add one other, the electorate in an off year election tends to be older, which tends to benefit Republicans. They get more of that vote -- to turnout single women, minorities, younger voters, Democrats those folks don't turn up in midterm elections, so how are Democrats going to get at them? They are going to target them with specifics. There's going to be a lot of talk about women's health, because Democrats want to turn out suburban women voters, and single women voters, an important issue, but not maybe what's on the top of everybody's mind.

There will be a lot of these attempts to narrowcast into those constituencies to increase Democratic turnout in this special election year.

SCHIEFFER: You know, Ronald Reagan got a larger percentage of the white vote than Mitt Romney did. And Ronald Reagan won. Am I right in that?

DICKERSON: Romney -- Romney got more -- a larger percentage...

SCHIEFFER: Romney got a larger percentage of the - it didn't sound right as it was coming out of my mouth. These things happen. He got a larger percentage of the White vote than Ronald Reagan did bad yet he lost this election.

But you had Barack Obama in this race in 2012. He is not there this time. Will that make a difference?

SALVANTO: Well, we have evidence that it's not just Obama. Obama as a candidate matters but if you look at other elections, if you look at some midterm elections, it seems that voter turnout among African-Americans has risen in a way that isn't just about Obama. And of course we have vastly more Latinos and Asian-Americans, two groups that vote heavily democratic.

As John pointed out, many of these groups don't vote as heavily in midterm elections. It will be a bit test of the Democratic turnout machine in 2014.

LEONARDT: Having said that, we see historically that people who go to the polls and disapprove of the sitting administration when the president is not on the ballot, vote 80 percent or more against his party's congressional candidate. So to that extent, yes, he is on the ballot.

WALTER: That is right.

And many of the states, it's not - these are not heavily minority majority states where the electorate is going to look different, this is not a battle for control of Pennsylvania or Florida, Colorado being an exception in this race.

But these are a lot of southern states or a lot of states where the white vote is still the key to winning the elections

SCHIEFFER: All right, well, we have to end it there. Thank you all.

We will be back. We will see you guys next month when we will see if the election were held then what the results would be.

For complete results on all of this check out our CBS News website and the Upshot section on The New York


SCHIEFFER: Well, that is it for us today. Be sure to turn CBS this morning tomorrow morning for more of the interview with Hamas leader and for all the latest on all of the developments around the world.

That is it for us. See you next week right here on Face the Nation.



Jackie Berkowitz,

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