- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 2, 2000

It is appropriate to use polite euphemisms for lying when discussing statements of facts made by Vice President Al Gore. Currently, it is commonly accepted by writers across the political spectrum, including cautionary memos from his own staff, to say that Al Gore has the propensity to "expand or embellish facts."

Thus, a quick visit to www.algore2000.com, Mr. Gore's presidential candidacy website, continues his tradition of embellishment. In the website, Al Gore takes credit for a very close working relationship with key foreign leaders through the special binational commission he chairs with Russia (which is true). In addition, it is stated definitively that, "As vice president, Gore has lead important arms reduction efforts around the world" (which his record will show as both "expanded and embellished").

Unfortunately for Mr. Gore's campaign, the record of Russian arms proliferation to the People's Republic of China is staggeringly bad. During Mr. Gore's stewardship of the U.S.- Russian relationship, the Russians have:

Furnished nuclear-weapon-capable Sovnevery destroyers to the People's Liberation Army Navy, and will conduct joint naval combat training exercises this year.

The Russians have sold: Submarines; modern fighter aircraft, the SU-27; modern attack aircraft, the SU-30; an AWACS aircraft; long-range cruise missiles; advanced avionics.

Finally, in response to a question from Sen. Robert Bennett, Utah Republican, about Russian assistance to the PRC in cyber-warfare, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright ran for cover.

On Al Gore's watch, with his special portfolio of U.S.-Russian relations, the People's Liberation Army generals who have threatened Los Angeles with nuclear destruction, have built a modern military that can soon dominate Asia.

But wait " it gets even worse.

In 1992, then-Sen. Al Gore of Tennessee, along with Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican, authored the Iran-Iraq Non-Proliferation Act. The act specifically targeted sanctions against any nation that sold "chemical, biological, nuclear or destabilizing numbers and types of advanced conventional weapons." The People's Republic of China sold state-of-the-art long-range cruise missile technology to Iran. Thus, not only does China benefit from acquiring high-tech military equipment, but they make money selling the stuff to sworn enemies of America. Since Mr. Gore walked away from his own legislation, one can only imagine what other positions he will disregard for political expediency.

Therefore, during this presidential campaign it is imperative to look to the future and to see if one can continue to take Mr. Gore's word at face value. His website informs all interested that "Al Gore has played a role in almost every foreign policy decision of the past six years." It is the Clintonesque fuzziness of "almost" that is critical to understanding exactly where Al Gore stands on the most important foreign policy and national defense issue facing the next president of the United States the emerging military power of the People's Republic of China, a hostile communist dictatorship with military designs on its neighbors.

Since Al Gore has conveniently ignored the Russian-PRC arms deals, and PLA proliferation, it is essential for this presidential election year to determine Al Gore's specific advice to President Clinton on the administration's blocking the sale of extremely capable Aegis-equipped destroyers to Taiwan. Al Gore has to go on record on this point.

So far, the Clinton-Gore administration has managed to point to the Pentagon as making the decision not to help Taiwan purchase much-needed military weapons to deter a PRC military strike. This smacks of politics. It would be extremely interesting to find out which senior military officers signed off on the "Pentagon decision." Also, with recent stories about the troops losing faith in their senior leaders, how far did the Four Stars go to staff such a recommendation? Or to be fair, perhaps it was a "cooked" finding directed and dictated by the White House. Nevertheless, since Al Gore wants to be president, he should be asked directly, if blocking the sale of sophisticated weapons to Taiwan is, in his opinion, wise and sound. He should be allowed no Pentagon camouflage or evasion.

As the potential leader of the Free World, Candidate Gore. is it an appropriate decision not to arm Taiwan? A simple "yes" or "no" will suffice. If Taiwan is not allowed to buy whatever military equipment it feels necessary to defend itself, will you pledge, as president, to make up any imbalance by sending American forces to defend Taiwan, in the event of war in the Taiwan Straits, and thus accept higher U.S. casualties?

Gov. George W. Bush, on Nov. 19, 1999, flatly stated that, "We will help Taiwan defend itself." He is on record. Where is Al Gore on this most important issue?

Edward T. Timperlake and William C. Triplett II are the co-authors of "Red Dragon Rising," Regnery, 1999.

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