Mr. LIMAN: Indeed, didn't North invoke the name of the President?
Mr. HAKIM: Yes.
Mr. LIMAN: He dropped the name of the President all the time,
Mr. HAKIM: When I was present.
Mr. LIMAN: Did you consider him to be a name dropper? That it
Mr. HAKIM: I found Colonel North to be a devoted American. He
will do anything to obtain his objectives, sir. Including giving his
Mr. LIMAN: I have a question about this. You can get an impression here that North is hustling you, that you are hustling North,
that the Iranians are hustling you, that you are hustling the Iranians and that it really is, as you said before, a commercial type of
environment, is that an unfair impression that I have?
Mr. HAKIM: Yes. That is unfair.
Mr. LIMAN: When you were told that this agreement that you
had negotiated had been approved by the President of the United
States, you must have felt very proud?
Mr. HAKIM: I felt proud throughout, sir. I felt proud being part of
Mr. LIMAN: Did you feel like you had been the Secretary of State
for a day?
Mr. HAKIM: I would not accept that position for any money in
the world, sir.
Mr. LIMAN: Well, you had it better than the Secretary of State in
some sense. You didn't have to get confirmed; correct?
Mr. HAKIM: I still believe that I have it better than the Secretary.
Mr. LIMAN: And—
Mr. HAKIM: I can achieve more, too.
Mr. LIMAN: And if this initiative had succeeded, did you ever
make any calculation as to how much you and General Secord
Mr. HAKIM: In what period of time, sir?
Mr. LIMAN: People tend to think in terms of three-to-five year
Mr. HAKIM: Many millions.
Mr. LIMAN: Did it bother you at all that here you—and I say it
respectfully—a private citizen was left with this kind of task of negotiating an agreement in which if it succeeded, you stood to benefit very substantially?
Mr. HAKIM: Mr. Liman, what bothered me was that we didn't
have the competence within the Government to do what I could do.
That still bothers me.
Mr. LIMAN: So because you felt that the State Department
wasn't competent to negotiate with Iran, that that made it appropriate and comfortable for you to do this?
Mr. HAKIM: No, sir. My understanding is very different than
that. My understanding is that we here wrongfully m the United
States have created a shield and the name of that shield is called
terrorism. We say Moslem plus Middle East equals terrorism, and
we are hiding behind this excuse and we are not doing the right
things to approach the Iranians, sir.
Mr. LIMAN: And you felt that you knew better than the Secre-
tary of State? Is that fair?
Mr. HAKIM: What I am saying, that I knew and I know now
better as to how to communicate with the Iranians.