tv CNN Newsroom With Carol Costello CNN January 12, 2017 7:00am-8:01am PST
in addition let me also recognize and thank senator sam nunn and senator and secretary of defense bill cohen for their distinguished service and eloquent words this morning, thank you, gentlemen. january mattis began his long career as a sect lieutenant at central washington university. he has served the highest echelons of the marine corps and capped his service in the united states central command. general mattis, if firmed you will lead the time when the united states faces challenges that do not offer quick or easy solutions. some of these challenges are about traditional tensions while others cross international boundaries. you would help oversee national security policy for a president that lacks foreign policy and defense experience and whose temperament is far different from prior presidents. i think many americans, in this body and both sides of the
aisle, are rightly concerned about how he may respond when tested by russia, iran, north korea, and other transnational threats such as cyber. considering some of these hotspots in the world in detail, i would like to start with iran, which remains a top concern for this committee. their behavior with respect to forces across the region has not improved and iran's unsafe actions have continued. i believe the joint plan of action is the most effective way to prevent iran from resuming their nuclear weapons program. general mattis, while you raise concerns about the jcpoa when it was being negotiated, you stated during a center for strategic and international studies forum in april 2016 that in your words, there is no going back absent a real violation. i agree with that assessment. i look forward to hearing your thoughts about how we can build upon the jcpoa to address other
iranian threats including its malign influence in the region and ballistic missile programs. violent extremist groups remain a persistent and likely generational problem. our actions have made significant gains in recapturing areas once held by isil including operations directed as mosul and raqqah. however, isil continues to find new ways to terrorize innocent civilians and recruit new members. in the long term successful military action against isil, al qaeda, and other violent groups must be complemented by nonmilitary efforts by the international community to address the circumstances that led to the rise of such groups, again, echoing comments that my colleagues mentioned about the complementarity of the state department and the congress.
kim jong un's recent tests and ballistic efforts are a threat. how we deal with north korea's missile capabilities and potential for collapse will be an ongoing debate and challenge for the department of defense. russia has roundly rejected the post colder w war international order. furthermore, the efforts to destabilize neighboring countries cannot be ignored. the recent assessment that president vladimir putin organized a campaign to undermine our election, this committee would be interested to hear your ideas on the best posture going forward. in addition to these broad strategic challenges, we must also grapple with issues specific to the department of defense. for instance, this committee has
done its best to allocate extra funding to support full spectrum home station training, flying hours, depot main and installation sustainment. general mattis, given your experience, i would welcome your assessment on current readiness levels and your thoughts on what can and should be done. recruiting and retaining a sufficiently sized, trained, and equipped military with the necessary character and tal don't meet national defense requirements is a paramount goal. to that end i strongly support secretary carter's decision to develop gender neutral standards for all military operations regardless of their gender, to include service in ground combat units. for the first time, highly talented and motivated female marines and soldiers are being assigned to units that were previously closed to them. successful implementation of
this decision requires strong leadership to ensure that individual success of the service member and the clothive success of their unit and their service. and i expect you to provide that leadership. i remain concerned that too often our service members and their families fall victim to financial problems. this is an issue of importance. soldiers, sailors, airmen or marine hearing from a spouse back home about unscrupulous financial organizations is unacceptable. i and the chairman have made it a strong priority in this committee. defense budgets should be based on our long term military strategy. however, defense spending is subject to the budget control act as the chairman has pointed out. and the defense investments that have been made to modernize platforms and equipment are in jeopardy. in addition, we must be aware that simply adding funding to
government agencies creates other problems and is not an effective long term solution. one of your first tasks in the new administration will be to submit a fiscal 2018 budget that addresses these issues and goes to the point the chairman made of repealing the budget control act. general mattis, if confirmed, you will manage the department of defense grappling with many extraordinarily difficult challenges and it requires strong civilian leadership. congress must provide exceptions to the statutory requirement that currently prohibits individuals from being appointed if they're within seven years of their military service. earlier this week this committee held a hearing that was illuminating and constructive. i hope you will share the actions you will take on civilian control of the military if confirmed. when he assumes office, president trump will become commander in chief of our around forces. i continue to hope that the
gravity of the office of the president and the magnitude of the challenges our country embraces will encourage him to be more thoughtful in his comments. however president-elect trump has made a number of statements addressing north korea's icbm capability, our trade relations with china and expansion of u.s. nuclear weapons. most troubling is the president-elect's continuing praise of vladimir putin and his seeming indifference to his efforts to influence the american election. many people believe you will be the source that cools the coffin. i look forward to hearing how you will manage the relationship between the nsc and the president. again, thank you, mr. chairman, i look forward to hearing from our nominee. >> thank you, general mattis. there are standard questions we are required to ask. i would go through those very
quickly and point out, in order to exercise its legislative and oversight responsibilities important to this committee able to receive testimony, briefings, and other communications of information. have you adhered to applicable laws and regulations governing conflicts of interest? >> i have. >> will you ensure that your staff complies with deadlines established for requested communication including questions for the record and hearings? >> i will. >> will you cooperate in providing witnesses and briefers in response to congressional requests? >> yes. >> will those witnesses be protected from reprisal for their testimony or briefings? >> yes. >> do you agree if confirmed to appear and testify upon request of this committee? >> i do. >> do you agree to provide documents including copies of electronic forms and communications in a timely manner when requested by a duly constituted committee or to consult with the committee in providing such documents? >> yes, sir. >> have you assumed any duties
or undertaken any actions which would appear to presume the outcome of the confirmation process? >> i have not. >> welcome before the committee, general mattis. >> thank you, mr. chairman and ranking member reed. it's an honor to come before you for this confirmation hearing as the president-elect's nominee for the position of secretary of defense. i request my written statement be accepted for the record. >> without objection. >> i want to thank all of you on the committee for taking time to see me during my courtesy calls. and i thank you for your willingness to accommodate this hearing and consider my nomination. i have testified previously in front of this committee and i've always held it in the highest regard. based on my past years' experience, i do trust this committee and each member of it, and if confirmed i will demonstrate that trust. i wish to thank former senator william cohen for so kindly introducing me this morning. and i'm equally grateful to the long serving chairman of this
committee, senator sam nunn, for his support. it is humbling to be considered for this position and i thank the president-elect for his trust and confidence in me. when this unanticipated request came, i was enjoying a full life west of the rockies. i was not involved in the presidential campaign and i was certainly not seeking or envisioning a position in any new administration. that said, it would be the highest honor if i am confirmed to lead those who volunteer to support and defend the constitution and to defend our people. all my remarks today recognize that it is only with the advice and consent of the senate that i can be confirmed. i know the senators of this committee are well aware of the many global securities challenges we face. we see each day a world awash in change. our country is still at war in afghanistan and our troops are fighting against isis and other terrorist groups in the middle east and elsewhere.
russia is raising grave concerns on several fronts, and china is shedding trust along its periphery. increasingly we see islands of stability in our hemisphere. democracies here, in europe, and in asia under attack by nonstate actors and nations that mitchly see their security in the insecurity of others. our armed forces in this world must remain the best-led, the best-equipped, and the most lethal in the world. these demanding times require us to put together a strong national security team here in washington. if confirmed, i will lead the department of defense and be a forthright member of that team. i recognize that i will need to be the strongest possible advocate for military and civilian personnel and their families. i will foster an atmosphere of harmony and trust at the department with our interagency counterparts and the
congressional committees. as swiftly as the president-elect's national security team is confirmed, i will work to make sure our strategy and military calculus are employed to reinforce traditional tools of diplomacy, ensuring our president and our diplomats negotiate from a position of strength. in addition to ensuring collaboration across government and the adoption of an integrated strategy, we must also embrace our international alliances and security partnerships. history is clear. nations with strong allies thrive and those without them wither. if you confirm me, my watchwords will be solvency and security in providing for the protection of our people and the survival of our freedoms. my priorities as secretary of defense will be to strengthen military readiness, strengthen our alliances, and bring business reforms to the department of defense. our military is the envy of the world, representing america's
awesome determination to defend herself. working with you, i will endeavor to keep our unique all-volunteer force second to none. we open the door to all patriots who are eligible and meet the standards, provide them with the training, equipment, and leadership essential to their success, and ensure all service members are treated with dignity and respect. i recognize my potential civilian role differs in essence from my former role in uniform. civilian control of the military is a fundamental tenet of the american military tradition. both the commander in chief and the secretary of defense must impose an objective strategic calculus in the national security decisionmaking process and effectively direct its actions. civilian leaders bear these responsibilities because the esprit decor of our military and its obedience to civilian leadership reduces the
inclination and power of the military to oppose a policy if it is ultimately ordered to implement. if the senate consents and if the full congress passes an exemplifies to the seven-year requirement, i will provide strong civilian leadership of military plans and decisions in the department of defense. i recognize under the constitution it is the congress that raises, sustains, and supports our armed forces through annual authorizations and appropriations. for many years i have watched you in action and testified before you. i look forward to collaborating closely for the defense of our nation. i am mindful of the extraordinary privilege it is to be nominated for this position. i will hold service members, civilians, and their families foremost in my thoughts and work to give the department the best chance for victory if you confirm me. finally, on a personal note, i have worked at the pentagon twice in my career. a few people may know i'm not the first person in my family to do so. when in the wartime spring of
1942, my mother was 20 years old and working in military intelligence. she was part of the first wave of government employees to move into the still-unfinished pentagon. she had come to america as an infant and lives today on the banks of the columbia river in the pacific northwest. little could she imagine in her youth that more than 90 years after she immigrated to this country and 75 years after she first walked through the doors of the war department, one of her sons would be sitting here before you today. thank you. may i take your questions. >> general, i neglected, would you like to introduce members of your family who are here with us today? >> thank you, senator. they're safely west of the rockies as well right now. [ laughter ] >> very quickly, our uniformed military leaders have said that -- have testified before
this committee that the budget control act has put the men and women serving in uniform at greater risk. do you agree with that? >> i do, sir. >> i believe that we are in serious trouble in afghanistan, as the taliban is able to attack regions; is that a fair statement? >> they have made advances and eroded some of our successes, mr. chairman. >> and the afa is sustaining unsustainable losses? >> i need to review the casualty figures and recruitment, sir, but i believe that's correct. >> do you believe that we have a strategy that will allow us to regain control of raqqah? >> i believe we do, sir. however, i believe that strategy
needs to be reviewed and perhaps energized on a more aggressive timeline. >> it seems to me that some of the actions, we're taking 50 troops here, 200 there, smacks of mission creep. is there -- do you think that there is some aspects of that? >> chairman, i'm not current on this issue. if confirmed i will get current very quickly. >> i just returned from a trip to the baltics, georgia and ukraine. they are incredibly worried about our commitment to them. and one of the major priorities that the baltic countries have is a permanent u.s. military presence, not a base, but a permanent military presence in the baltics. do you agree with that?
>> chairman, once the new national security team is confirmed, i want to sit down with them and come up with a coherent, integrated strategy that uses diplomacy -- >> i understand. i'm specifically speaking of the baltics. >> i do, sir. >> on a trip that i took with senator graham and senator klobuchar, we went close to the front lines, with the president of ukraine, where we took part in various ceremonies and meetings with these brave ukrainians, 10,000 of whom have been slaughtered by vladimir putin in his invasion of crimea and ukraine. and i know you can appreciate the fact that there was a ceremony where the president of ukraine gave their highest award
to the mother of a young man who had just been killed by a russian sniper a couple of days before. it's always very moving, and it brings home graphically what the russians have done in ukraine and crimea. crimea, in blatant violation of the budapest agreement for which they recognized crimea as part of ukraine in return for ukraine giving up its nuclear inventory, what do you think we ought to do about russia, general mattis? do you think we ought to maybe have sanctions against russia? or basically sit by, as we have for the last couple of years, and watched their aggression, by the way, including their precision guided weapons against hospitals in aleppo, the list goes on and on of the atrocities that have been committed by vladimir putin while we again
try a reset. i've watched three presidents commit themselves to new relationship with vladimir putin. all three have been an abysmal failure. should we ignore the lessons of history in our relationship with vladimir putin? and what should we be doing? >> chairman, history is not a straitjacket. but i've never found a better guide for the way ahead than studying the history. since yalta, we have a long list of times we've tried to engage positively with russia. we have a relatively short list of successes in that regard. and i think right now the most important thing is to recognize the reality of what we deal with, with mr. putin, and we recognize that he is trying to break the north atlantic alliance, and that we take the steps, the integrated steps, diplomatic, economic, military, and the alliance steps, working
with our allies, to defend ourselves where we must. >> you are a distinguished student of history. and as we are all aware, that following world war ii, a world order was established which has held for basically the last 70 years. do you believe that that world order is now under more strain than it's ever been? >> i think it's under the biggest attack since world war ii, sir. and that's from russia, from terrorist groups, and with what china is doing in the south china sea. >> and that would argue for us making sure we're adequately prepared to meet these challenges? >> i think deterrence is critical right now, sir, absolutely. and that requires the strongest military. >> do you think we have a strong enough military today in order to achieve that goal? >> no, sir. >> i thank you.
senator reed. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. thank you, general, for your testimony, and again for your service. as i mentioned in my opening statement, your comments at csis indicated misgivings about jcpoa, in your words, there's no going back. short of a clear and present violation, that was enough to stimulate the europeans' action that we have to essential stly y the course. is that still your view? >> it's an arms agreement, senator, it's not a friendship treaty. when america gives its word we have to live up to it and work with our allies. >> as i pointed out and as you have recognized and pointed out much more eloquently, challenges arising from the non-nuclear aspects of iranian conduct. proxy support, interference with shipping. in fact there was an incident this week of provocation.
how do you apply appropriate pressure to the iranians to contain their behavior in these areas without jeopardizing the solidarity of the european and world community and the durability of the jcpoa? >> chairman, once the new national security team is confirmed, we'll work together. but i think to publicly display what iran is up to with their surrogates and proxies, their terrorist units that they support, to recognize the ballistic missile threat, to deal with the maritime threat, and to publicly make clear to everyone what they're doing in the cyber realm, all helps to constrain iran. >> thank you. now, if you are to become the secretary of defense, you will be a critical component of the intelligence community.
you produced intelligence through the defense intelligence agency. you can consume intelligence because it is the basis of almost every recommendation or decision you would make. and we are in a very unique situation where we have a president-elect disparaging the intelligence community, questioning its conclusions, and questioning its motivations, suggesting perhaps that there would be some actions taken, perhaps bordering on retribution, for analysis that is being done, we premiusume, i certainly presume, based on tradecraft and allegiance to the facts and the best judgment they can make. do you believe if you observe behavior such as that,
disrupting the intelligence community, disparaging it, undermining it, ignoring it -- again, i could go on. do you feel you have an obligation to the country and the committee to inform the committee of those actions? >> senator, i can tell new my many years of involvement in the military, i had a close relationship with the intelligence community. i could evaluate their effectiveness at times on a daily basis. and i have very, very high degree of confidence in our intelligence community. >> and if you see that community being undercut, not debated about their conclusions, but undercut or somehow ignored or selectively being listened to or ignored, again, do you feel you have an obligation to make us aware of this so we can exercise our responsibilities?
>> i'll be completely transparent with this committee, sir. but i would not have taken this job if i didn't believe the president-elect would also be open to my input on this or any other matter. >> you have talked about the situation with respect to russia. one aspect of that is operations in syria. there has been some discussion, on and off during the campaign, of cooperating with the russians in syria. do you think there's a possibility of that, a likelihood of that, or would that be a good approach? >> senator, russia, to quote the chairman's opening statement, has chosen to be a strategic competitor. they're an adversary in key areas. and while we should always engage and look for areas of cooperation and even in the worst years of the cold war,
president reagan, secretary schultz, were able to work with russia, the soviet union at that time, and reduce the nuclear weapons. so i'm all for engagement. but we also have to recognize reality and what russia is up to. and there's a decreasing number of areas where we can engage cooperatively and an increasing number of areas where we're going to have to confront russia. >> thank you. >> senator inhofe? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i won't take all my time because every question i was going to ask, the chairman was going to ask, and i like the answers. i also am honored to have known you for 30 years. that's not normally the case. i'm so excited that you're willing to do this. the two things that we're concerned with are readiness and what's happened -- that i'm concerned with, is readiness and u.s. influence. a year ago you stated that our influence in the middle east is at its lowest point in four decades. and i agree with that.
we also had confirmation testimony last november by a general who said continuous combat operations and reduced overall budgets have driven readiness to historically low levels. i look and i see senator cohen and senator nunn, i spent time with both of them, i admire them so much. but this isn't like it used to be. right now we have 1/3 of the army brigade combat teams ready to fight in all types warfare. the current air force is the smallest and oldest in air force history yet only half its fighter squadrons are ready to fight in intense combat. general mattis, your marines, the aircraft, their combat, marine aviators, are at historical lows right now in terms of flight time. navy, we have requirements for
308 ships and we only have 274. so this is not like it used to be. i would only say this, i really believe that we'll have to re-look at the priorities we have in this country. i enjoy quoting president reagan when he first came in, he said, quote, starting by considering what must be done to maintain peace and review all the possible threats against our security, then a strategy for strengthening peace and defending against those threats which must be agreed upon. and finally, our defense establishment must be evaluated to see what is necessary to project against any and all of the potential threats. the cost of achieving these ends is totaled up, and the result is the budget for national defense. do you think he was right at that time? >> yes, sir, i do.
>> i'll look forward to that. thank you for being willing to do this. mr. chairman? >> thank you. thank you, general mattis, for also being willing to do this. you and i have had a chance to work together in the past. we also have had a chance to visit. i would like to first briefly talk about the overseas contingency operating fund and the joke that is being -- the cruel joke that is being played on the american public that we have not been able to come together in an honest way and confront the needs of our military and confront the needs of our domestic national security in a bipartisan compromise to allow us to quit putting base military funding in a fund that doesn't have to be paid for. and it's gotten worse every
year. you know, it's such a hypocrisy. it is one of the reasons everybody in america is so disgusted with us, that we can't be honest with the american people about the needs of our country and come together in a bipartisan way to meet them in a way that is responsible in terms of the way that we budget and spend money. tell me how you intend on addressing this important issue going forward. >> senator, the need for our country to maintain a safe and secure nuclear deterrent, a decisive conventional force, while maintaining an irregular capability, is completely understood. and i know it is by this committee. but how do you then translate that into budgetary discipline and managerial integrity of the budget? and as you know, we will bring forward from defense what we think we need for overseas contingencies, for the base
budget, this sort of thing. i believe my desire would be to say everything is in the base budget except for something that legitimately pops up that couldn't be anticipated. but at the same time, we are not in a position there to dictate that. and the bottom line, we will come to you with what is necessary and then support this committee and the congress in justifying it and making certain we have your confidence we're spending every dollar for what we should be spending it on, something we cannot do right now, i'm aware of. but that's my goal in this effort. and i don't have a solution for what the chairman described as a self-inflicted wound of the budget control act. i don't know how to get around this in a way that puts the congress back into its oversight role rather than salami slices of cuts where you don't actually exercise your judgment. >> right. >> i'm much more comfortable with you doing that than some arithmetic. i think i'm with you, i share 100% of your frustration and
your goal. i can't tell you i know how to get there other than giving you my best military advice. >> thank you. i also want to briefly touch on women serving in every military occupational specialty. and you and i had a chance to visit about this at length. i'm particularly proud of the work that has been done on this in my state. since 1999, the leader course has been impressively maintaining completely gender-neutral standards determining who and who does not graduate with that prestigious tab. it is a rigorous physical requirement. despite those rigorous physical demands, over the course of the graduation rates, since 1999, the graduation rates for women and men have both been at about 50%. so understanding that none of us want any standards diminished, and that we've got to maintain
the highest physical standards for the specialties in which men and women are going to serve, can you address for this committee how committed you are going forward to having both men and women serve alongside each other when they are capable of doing the work for our country? >> yes, senator, i can. i think you hit on the point that no standards are changed. the standards are the standards. and when people meet the standards, then that's the end of the discussion on that. i would also add that what we're talking about here is somewhere north of 15% of our force is made up of women. and the reason we're able to maintain an all-volunteer force with very, very high recruiting standards is because we go to males and females. and that same application of that human capital has got to show where they can best serve, that's where they go.
>> thank you, mr. chairman. general mattis, let's talk about israel for a few moments. would you agree that the united states shares common values and strategic interests with israel? >> israel is a fellow democracy and i think israel's security is very, very important to the united states. >> are there any other democracies in the middle east? >> no, sir. >> would you agree that the threat of iran's regional belligerence and nuclear ambitions are a shared threat both to the united states and to israel? >> i agree, and i would add also to our arab partners in the region. >> and i think you said we're going to have to live with what the administration has done with regard to the energy agreement with iran. are you confident that we can monitor the situation with regard to possible violations? do we have that capability?
>> i'll have to the in and look at the classified data. if you confirm me, senator, i believe we can have it. i just can't respond authoritatively right now if we've got those processes in place. >> in your opinion, what do the united states' failure last month to veto the u.n. resolution with regard to israel do to our bilateral relationship with israel? >> sir, i would have to get back and look at that. i say that because i've read what's in the newspaper, and what's going on in both tel aviv and washington and new york. but i do not have a very authoritative view of that right now. i think we have got to restore a better relationship with israel and with our arab allies.
i think there's a sense on their part that we're indifferent to the situation they face, the security situation that they face. >> and we certainly don't need to send the signal that we're indifferent to their situation, do we? >> the greatest generation came home from world war ii recognizing, whether we like it or not, we're part of this world, sir. we're going to have to remember that lesson. >> and i realize this was a foreign policy question, but you're going to be part of the national security and foreign policy team. and let me say that one of my greatest concerns with regard to our failure to veto this resolution and therefore to let it be adopted by the u.n. security council is that people will argue that this establishes international law, and somehow this congress and this new administration are going to have to send the signal that we do not recognize that with regard
to the israeli presence in certain sections of jerusalem, that we do not recognize that resolution as international law, and we are in a tough position there. if you would like to comment on that, i would be glad to hear your thoughts, sir. >> sir, i think ultimately we're going to have to promote peace between the palestinian and the israeli authorities there. and that's going to take time to build that kind of trust. and we should be a partner in trying to build that resolution between those people. wh >> when one speaks of israel maintaining its qualitative military edge over neighbors in the region, what does that mean to you, general? >> sir, it has to do with the technology of the military equipment provided. i would only add that we also
have improving relations between israel and some of those neighbors and where we can work in terms of partnership with both israel and the arab neighbors. we can strengthen everyone's security and stability in the middle east. >> do you believe their qualitative military edge needs to be revitalized? >> i'm not aware that it's not vital now, that it's not fully formed right now. >> and with regard to the thucydides trap, of course secretary cohen has insulted every member of this committee by suggesting we don't understand that, but with regard to that, as i understand it, this occurs when a rising power tries to meet with the power of an already existing and established power.
do you think that is a risk when it comes to our relationship with china, particularly in the asian-pacific region? >> sir, i believe that we're going to have to manage that competition between us and china. there is another piece of wisdom from antiquity that says fear, honor, and interest always seem to be the root causes of why a nation chooses to go to hostilities. and i would just say that what we've got to do is engage diplomatically, engage in terms of alliances, engage economically, and maintain a very strong military so our diplomats are always engaging from a position of strength when we deal with a rising power. >> thank you very much. good luck to you, sir. >> thanks. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and welcome, general mattis, and thank you for your willingness to continue to serve this
country. i have read that in 2005, as commander of the marine corps combat development command, that you asked researchers to, quote, unleash us from the tether of fuel and explore ways to improve the efficiency of military vehicles in order to reduce the strain that energy puts on supply lines, because you, not only when you commanded the first marine division during the 2003 invasion, but you had also seen what happens when our troops outran their fuel supplies. so can you speak to why you think this is important? and will you as secretary of defense continue to support the military's effort to pursue alternative and more efficient sources of energy to reduce our reliance on conventional fuel supplies? >> yes, senator, we will take advantage of every advance in terms of extending our legs, extending our energy efforts.
and certainly there's a lot of progress that's been made. i've been living in silicon valley for the last several years, so you can understand my interest in what they're doing out there in the private sector. >> well, thank you. i think our military is way ahead of much of the rest of government and much of the private sector. and those are lessons that can be shared that will benefit the private sector as well. chairman mccain talked about the threat that russia poses, and listening to your responses it sounded like you also believe that russia poses a threat to the united states and to the -- i think you said the trans-atlantic alliance. today, for the first time since the fall of communism, american troops arrived in poland as part of the european reassurance initiative. how important is it for us to
continue these initiatives to reassure our european allies that we will continue to support them? and how concerned are you that some of president-elect trump's statements with respect to continuing to support nato, to support our allies in europe, has undermined our ability to continue this initiative, and will you support the eri continuing as secretary of defense? >> senator, i do support eri. nato, from my perspective, having served once as a nato supreme allied commander, is the most successful military alliance probably in modern world history, maybe ever. and it was put together, as you know, by the greatest generation coming home from a war to defend europe against soviet incursion by their military, yet the first
time it went to war is when this town and new york city were attacked. it's the first time nato went into combat. so my view is that nations with allies thrive and nations without allies don't. and so i would see us maintain the strongest possible relationship with nato. >> thank you. and are you concerned about some of the statements that president-elect trump has made with respect to our historic european allies and to nato and have you had a chance to have discussions with him, and how confident are you that he recognizes what you've just said about the importance of those relationships? >> senator, i have had discussions with him on this issue. he has shown himself open even to the point of asking more questions, going deeper into the issue about why i feel so strongly. he understands where i stand. and i'll work with the other
members of the team, the national security team, once the senate confirms them, to carry these views forward. >> thank you. you talked about, i think senator inhofe raised the issue of readiness of our troops. when we met we also talked about the national guard and the importance of the guard as being part of the one force that we depend on. readiness is obviously a concern for the national guard as well. in new hampshire, for example, our national guard has experienced at 32% decline in force structure since 2007, much more than many states that are smaller than we are. and they've had trouble with training rotations, resources, equipment, other aspects of readiness. can you commit to us that you, in addition to trying to address readiness with our active duty forces, that you will also look at the guard and reserve and try
and ensure that they also have access to what they need to be ready for deployment? >> senator, i share the chairman's view that we have shrunk our military capability. and one of the things that that forces on us is the awareness, it's not just a strategic reserve anymore in the national guard, it's also an operational reserve. that means they have to be ready to go on very short notice. that's just a reality, when we've shrunk our military to the point we have yet not reduced our strategic obligations. so we are going to have to keep the national guard and the reserves of all the armed forces at the top of their game. we can't deploy them without having them at a high state of readiness, mostly in equipment and training. there's some things obviously they don't do because they're not on duty 365 days a year. but as an operational reserve and strategic reserve, they'll be critical. >> thank you, general. >> thank you, mr. chairman.
thank you, general mattis, for your past service to this country, and thank you again for your willingness to step forward and serve us once again. i was happy to see your responses to the advanced policy questions affirming the importance of nuclear weapons, which you describe as fundamental to our nation's security, and your statement that, quote, we must continue with the current nuclear modernization plans for all three legs of the triad, end quote. when we talked in my office about the triad last week, you brought up i believe a very important point that bears repeating, relating to the icbm force. there is a broad recognition that the legs of the triad have different strengths. the bombers are visible, and therefore they have what i call signaling value. the submarines are highly survivable. and the icbms are the most
responsive leg and they can be launched at a moment's notice. you mentioned the targeting challenge of our icbm force, and what that targeting challenge poses for our adversaries. could you explain that further? >> ma'am, in my review of the triad that you brought up here, senator, i looked at each one of those legs, is it necessary. and i haven't had access to all the classified data, but i had a fair amount of background on this. and some of the aspects of why we have a triad have not changed. so in looking at each leg of it, with the icbm force, it's clear that they are so buried out in the central u.s. that any enemy that wants to take us on is going to have to commit two, three, four weapons to make certain they take each one out. in other words, the icbm force provides a cost composing strategy on an adversary.
and again, what we're trying to do is set such a stance with our triad that these weapons must never be used ever again. and so the deterrent value of the icbm force is that an enemy would have to basically use three or four times as many weapons to take out each individual one. so that's the targeting challenge the enemy faces against the icbm force. >> thank you. and in your answers to this committee's advance questions about whether we are deterring hostile activity in cyber space, you say no, and you continue on to state, quote, to be deterred, our adversaries must know they will suffer consequences from cyber attacks that outweigh any gains they hope to achieve. if they choose to act as adversaries, we will treat them as such, end quote. i completely agree and believe
that more costs must be imposed on those who are responsible for cyber attacks. so this gets to the issue we've discussed in great detail on this committee, which is the lack of an overall policy to respond to cyber attacks. when we discussed this in our recent meeting, you made a point that i believe is also very important, which is that the lack of a policy is potentially destabilizing, because adversaries, unaware of our boundaries, may take a provocative action that forces the united states to act militarily. i believe you characterized it as, quote, stumbling into a conflict. essentially we don't want to find out what constitutes an act of war in cyber space the hard way. can you elaborate on that point for us? >> senator, i believe a lot of crises and even wars have started from missed calculations. so while it's important we make
clear what we stand for, i think in an area such as you're bringing up, cyber, it's also important that our adversaries know what we absolutely will not tolerate. and by making that clear, you're less apt to have somebody stumble into a situation where now we're forced to take action. that said, putting together a policy like this is not something the department of defense can do alone. we certainly have a key role, a fundamental role. but at the same time, from our treasury department, to our commerce department, to our homeland security, we need to get a lot of people in a room to put this policy together. i realize it's a new domain. but that doesn't give us an excuse not to address it on an urgent basis. >> thank you, sir. i look forward to working with you on that. this committee has been focused on cyber. we are looking for a policy. and i look forward to developing one with you. and i invite you to come to
nebraska and visit, i would love to be there when you're there. thank you. >> senator gillenbrand. >> thank you. do you plan on rolling back the participation of women based on your previous statements? >> senator, i've never come into a job with a preformed agenda of changing anything. i come in assuming people before me deserve respect for the job they did and the decisions they made. >> i ask specifically because in previous speeches, one from the marines memorial club in san francisco in 2015, you were asked specifically about whether we should open infantry positions and special forces combat jobs to women. and you said you did not think it was a good idea. you said when you mix, you know
that when you mix arrows, when you mix affection for one another, that could be manifested sexually, i don't care if you go anywhere in history, you will not find where this has worked, never has it worked. then in a previous speech on april 23rd, 2014, you said the idea of putting women in there is not setting them up for success. could we find a woman who could run fast enough? of course we could. could we find a few who could do the pullups? of course we could, that's not the point, that's not the point at all, it's whether or not you want to mix arrows. and so in both of these question and answer sessions, you said you do not think you could do it. have you changed your view on this issue? >> senator, i was not in a position to go back into government when i made those statements. there are many policies that have been enacted over many years, including the years since i've been on active duty. i'm coming in with the understanding that i lead the department of defense, and if someone brings me a problem,
then i'll look at it. but i'm not coming in looking for problems. i'm looking for ways to get the department so it's at the most lethal stance. and in that regard, it's all about military readiness. i'm looking for military readiness and what we can do in that regard. >> do you plan to oppose women serving in these combat roles? >> i have no plan to oppose women in any aspect of our military. in 2003 i had hundreds of marines who happened to be women serving in my 23,000-person marine division. and this is ten years before i retired. and i put them right into the front lines alongside everyone else. >> so you no longer believe that eros is a problem when men and women are serving together? >> i believe if we are going to execute policies like this, we had better train our leaders so they can handle all things that
come from a policy that decided this town. that's our responsibility, to train our young leaders. >> we're going to break away momentarily from the senate armed services committee hearing to go to the senate intelligence committee hearing. mike pompeo, the congressman, is getting ready to testify. there he is, he's been nominated to become the cia director. let's listen in briefly. >> and your kindness. i sure know that i have. thank you so much, great to be here this morning. senator roberts, thank you too for your warm introduction. i'm especially grateful for your guidance over the years, not simply because you're the dean of the kansas congressional delegation, but due to the insights you've shared with me in your role as the former chairman of this committee, semper fi, sir. >> i may have to leave early. i finally got a client. >> senator, i completely understand, thank you very much
for being here, sir. >> chairman burr, vice chairman, senators, thank you for the opportunity to appear before you today as the nominee of the director of the central intelligence agency. i want to thank the staff of this committee too for your kindness and attention through the nomination process. i would like to thank president-elect trump for nominating me. it's an honor to be selected as the next steward of the world's premier intelligence agency. i look forward to working with senator coats, the nominee for the director of national intelligence, and supporting him in his critical role should we both be confirmed. i also want to thank director brennan and director clapper for their many, many years of selfless service to our nation. i'm grateful of course to the people of the fourth district of kansas who have entrusted me for the past six years and change to represent them in the united states house of representatives. it has been a true honor. and finally, i want to thank my patient and patriotic wife susan and my son nicholas, each of whom i love dearly. the two of you have been so
selfless in allowing me to return to public service, first as a member of congress and now keeping america safe. i can't tell you how much it means to me for you to be here today. having been a member on the house select committee on intelligence, i understand that my job will be to change roles from the central of policy making to information provider. the director must stay clearly on the side of collecting intelligence and providing objective analysis to policymakers including to this committee. i spent the majority of my life outside of politics. first as an army officer, then as a litigator, then running a manufacturing business in kansas. returning to duty is something that is in my bones. today i would like to briefly sketch some of the challenges i see facing the united states, address trends and intelligence, and describe what i see as the central intelligence agency role in addressing each of those. this is the most complicated
threat environment the united states has seen in recent memory. isis remains a resilient movement that still controls major urban centers throughout the middle east. we must ensure that they and those they inspire cannot expand their reach or slaughter more innocent people. the conflict in syria is one of the most humanitarian catastrophes in the 21st century. it has led to the rise of second-tier yse sectarianism. iran. the world's largest state sponsor of terror has become an even more emboldened and disrupt player in the middle east. russia has reasserted itself, threatening europe, invading ukraine, and doing nothing to aid in the destruction and defeat of isis. as china expands its military and economic reach, its activities in the south and east china seas and in cyber space are pushing new bound rharies a
creating real tension. north korea too has dangerously accelerated its nuclear and ballistic missile capabilities. we all rely on intelligence from around the globe to avoid strategic and tactical surprise. intelligence helps make the other elements of national power effective, including economic and legal measures against weapons proliferators, terrorist financiers and other criminals. foreign governments and liaison services are vital partners in preventing attacks and providing crucial intelligence. it's important that we all thank and appreciate the foreign partners who stand with us in helping make sure we all have the intelligence we need to keep america safe. if confirmed, i intend to advocate for a strong and vibrant intelligence community and for cia's sevcentrality. the intelligence community finds itself a potential victim of long term negative budgetary trends which can weaken the fabric of our intelligence
community. second, as with the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons and ballistic missile technology, countries such as north korea have low barriers of entry to engage in cyber operations. the u.s. must continue to invest wisely to maintain a decisive advantage. third, the effects of dislocation and poor governance present critical challenge but also new targets and opportunities for the cia's collection and analysis. and finally, the insider threat problem has grown exponentially in the digital age. the greatest threats to america have always been the cia's top priorities. it will be the cia's mission and my own if confirmed to ensure that the agency remains the best in the world at its core mission, collecting what our enemies do not want us to know. in short, the cia must be the world's premier espionage organization. one of emerging area for increased focus is the cyber domain. sophisticated adversaries like china and russia as well as less