tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN September 16, 2014 12:00am-2:01am EDT
>> 13 years of war since 9/11. the decision by the president to take on a new fight against this enemy was not an easy one. but the president recognizes the serious threat posed by isil. as the president will explain tonight, the united states is resolute in our effort to degrade and ultimately destroyer isil as part of a broad, international coalition, including nato allies and partners in the region, reflecting the global communities condemnation of isil and its tactics. as part of this, we are pleased to see the formation of the new government in iraq. with whom we intend to work closely. we look forward to this new
government addressing the rights and concerns of all of iraq's diverse communities, and its leaders from across the political spectrum, coming together to take unitedstance against -- unite it stance against isil. from a homeland security perspective here's what we are doing. first, to address the threats generally emanating from terrorist groups overseas, we have in recent weeks enhanced aviation security. in early july, i directed enhancing screening at 18 overseas airports witch direct flights to the united states. several weeks later wade ed six more airports to that list. two weeks ago we added another airport, an additional screening of carry-on luggage. the united kingdom and other countries that followed with similar enhancements to their aviation security, we continually evaluate whether more is necessary without
unnecessarily burdening the traveling public. longer term, we are pursuing pre-clearance at overseas airports with flights to the united states. this means inspection by a u.s. customs officer, and enhanced aviation security before a passenger gets on the plane to the united states. we now have pre-clearance at airports in dublin, shannon, the uae, canada, and the caribbean. are rather as a homeland security imperative to build more. to use a football metaphor, i'd much rather defend our end zone from the 50-yard line from the one yard line. i want to take every opportunity we have to expand homeland security beyond our borders. second, the department of homeland security, the fbi, and the intelligence community are making enhances and concerted efforts to track syrian foreign tigers who come from or seek to enter this country.
the reality is that there are more than 12,000 foreign tigers that have traveled to sera over the -- to syria over the last three years, including over a thousand europeans. we estimate that more than 100 americans have traveled or attempted to travel to syria to join the fight there one way or another. we are concerned that not only may these foreign fighters join isil or other extremist groups in syria, they may also be recruited by extremist groups to leave syria and conduct external attacks. the fbi has arrested a number of individuals who have tried to travel from the united states to syria to support terrorist activities there. third, we are working with european and other governments to build better information sharing, to track syrian foreign tigers. whenever i get together with mr. european counterparts-this
topic is almost always item one on the agenda. the importance of this issue is also reflect by the fact that it will be a singular topic of discussion at a u.n. security council summit that the president will chair in two weeks. i'm told in the history of the urn this is only the second time a u.s. president has permanently chaired a security -- personally cared a security are security council summit. we're making enhanced efforts to track those who enter and leave syria and may later seek to travel to the united states from a country for which the united states does not require a visa from its citizens. there are in fact a number of visa waiver program countries that also have large numbers of citizens who are syrian foreign tigers. -- fighters. generally we have strong information sharing relationships with this countries, and with their help we will build this capability.
we need to ensure we're doing all we took identify those who by their travel patterns attempt to hide their association with terrorist groups. when countries in our visa waiver program may agree to strong surety safeguards women have undertaken a review of these safeguards to review whether they'red a kit. we're saying whether there are additional safeguards immigrant pledded to identify foreign fieger and whether there can be any that can be implemented on an expedite it basis. all 38 nations in the visa waiver program have an interest in this. we're encouraging more countries to join the united states inialing tools like advance passenger information and passenger name record collection, which will help to identify terrorist travel patterns. fourth, within the u.s. government, fbi director, cia director brennan and i, and
others in law enforcement and the intelligence community, are enhancing our able to share information with each other about suspicious individuals. fifth, we are continually on guard against the potential domestic based, home grown terrorist threats threats who me lushing lushing in -- lurking in our society. thin' actor, or lone wolf, those that did not train at a terrorist camp over georgetown in the ranks of an terrorist organization overseas but inspired at home by a group roz social media, literature 0, extremist ideology, we got an example of this type of actor last year at the boston marathon. in many respects, this is the hardest terrorist threat to detect, and the one i worry about the most. to address the domestic lone wolf threat, i've directed that dhs build on our partnership with state and local law enforcement. local police and fire
departments are the first responders to any crisis in our home happen the local police-more than the federal government, have their finger on the pulse of the commune -- community from which a domestic terrorist may come to address the home-grown terrorist who may be lurking in our midst, we must also emphasize the need for help from the public. if you see something, say something. is more than a slogan. this week, we're sending a private sector advisory, identifying for retail businesses a long list of materials that could be used as explosive precursors, and the types of suspicious behavior that a retailer should look for from someone who buys a lot of these materials. within dhs, we have programs to engage in outreach to communities which themselves are able to reach young men who may turn to violence. i have directed that we step up
these programs, and personally i participate in them inch june, met with a syrian american community in a chicago suburb. later this month i will meet with somali community in culp columbus, ohio in october the white house will host a summit on domestic and international efforts to address extremism and address the whole life cycle of radicalization to violence poses by the foreign fighter risk. the good news for this country, i believe, is that over the last 13 years, we have vastly improved this nation's ability to detect and disrupted terrorist thoughts over seas before they reach the home lean. here at home, federal law enforcement does an excellent job, time and again, of identifying and investigating, arresting and prosecuting, scores of individuals before they commit terrorist acts.
though the bad news is we face real terrorist enemies and real terror threats. they nature of homeland security mission is no news is good news. no bombs no crashes no explosions, no natural disasters no deaths, and no destruction. but no news does not and cannot mean complacency. in this is a result of people in our government who prevent bad things you never hear about. in this, we ask for the help and understanding of the american public. we need the help of community organizations in a position to touch those disaffected from society in need of something or someone to believe in, belong to or children to stress that or worship to stress that violence and groups such as isil are not
the once. despite its slick public media and self-proclamation to be the islamic state of iraq, isil is neither islamic, nor is it a state. contrary to misguided beliefs of some, isil is not defending islam and is not defending innocent muslims. in fact most of the people killed by isil are muslims. isil is a stateless group of depraved criminals, rapists-kidnappers, killers, and terrorists who control territory. there is no religion, including islam, and there is no god, including allah, that would condone isil's violent tactics. we ask the american public to understand in these times the command -- continued need for certain level of homeland security in their daily lives. at airports, government buildings, public places, and large public gatherings.
we ask the american public to understand the vital role that our intelligence collection agencies play in keeping the homeland safe. i'm a daily consumer of the intelligence product. generated by the cia, nsa and other agencies of our government. i can attest to the great value these products have in our able to detect and guard begins the latest terrorist plot at the earliest stages. for our part, those of us in government need to remember our history. old and recent. or risk repeating it. tomorrow we will remember those killed on september 11th, 2001. we'll honor the police and fire men and civilians who, in extraordinary acts of courage, gave their lives that day. tomorrow and every september 11th thereafter, must also serve as the reminder that if we let our guard down,
the homeland security of this nation can be shattered in an instant. for those in government, it is important to know another aspect of our history. in the name of national security, our government should not overreact or react out of fear, anger 0, prejudice. our american history, old and recent, is riddled with unfortunate examples of in which our government in the name of national security, has gone too far. long before this nation honored martin luther king, with national holiday and a street named for him in virtually every major city, he was the target of government surveillance and harassment. professor charles hamilton, retired from columbia university, is one of the most respected political scientists in the united states, and a member of this council. in the 1960s he co-authored the book, blackhawks with
stokely carmichael and was suspect overred being a dangerous subversive by his own government. more recent in reaction to 9/11, our government engage ned enhanced interrogation techniques, contrary to who we are as a great nation. in the name of national security i can build you a perfectly safe city, but it will be a prison. i can build more fences and install more invasive screening devices, ask more intrusive questions, demand more answers and make everybody suspicious of each other. or that will cost us who we are as nation of people, who respect the law, cherish privacy, freedom and fair play, celebrate our diversity, and who are not afraid. in the final analysis, these are the things that constitute our greatest strengths as a nation. thank you all for listening, in [applause]
thank you, mr. secretary, for that fine speech. we're going to have a brief conversation, after which we're going to open it up to the members here and out in the cities for questions. mr. secretary, just -- i just want to ask you a little bit about the management challenges of your department. something over 100 agencies put together. i think it's probably about 100 congressional commitees oversee you. >> 108. as many subexciteees of congress report to oversee the department of homeland secures. >> still a good idea to put is together and how does one manage this organization -- people talk
about banks being too big and complex. how does one manage an organization with so many different line offices business? >> guest: first, you have to look at were all these diverse mission sets that come under the banner of homeland security existed before the creation of that department. our 22 components were spread across department of defense, department of agriculture, department of treasury, transportation, and a host of others, supervised by numerous cabinet secretaries. that was consolidated in 2003, and just within my nine months as secretary, i've seen the extraordinary cohesion that can be achieved by having these different components together in
one department around one conference table. for example, just this past summer, with the situation we had in the rio grande valley sector, with unaccompanied children, that required that i continually bring together our senior officials from immigration, customs enforcement, custom and border appreciation, fema, the coast guard, citizenship and immigration services-all around one conference table, whereas pre2002 they were spread across numerous agencies, depth of justice and others. so it makes in my view, an extraordinary amount of sense to have all that in one cabinet department. i'm responsible for our borders and people crossing our borders, land, sea, and air. so those are the components of dhs. and so i think it makes an incredible amount of sense.
is a travel around the world, meet with my counterparts, ministers of interior, many of them have almost exactly the same set of missions i do. and it took us until 2002 to put all that together, but there it is. >> in terms of manage; there are 240,000 people. it is for the most part a combination of organizations that many of whom pre-dated the adapt of homeland security where their own culture, their own way of doing business, and i don't believe it's necessary for us to try to supplant the culture and get, say, the secret service to behave like the coast guard or like fema. but there are things we should have in common. i've directed a unity of effort initiative to bring to the department a more strategic focus to our budgetmaking and
our acquisitions so we avoid duplications of effort and not just stovepiped where one component gives me their budget request and we forward it to omb. we want to bring a focus to that earlier in the process. so it's a balance between centralized management but allowing each organization to have their own culture, their own mission, and a good chief of staff and good senior leaders -- i'm happy that the story doesn't get told enough. when i came in we had no secretary no deputy secretary, we had vacancies in a number of senate confirmed presidential appointments. in the last year, as the senate has confirmed nine of our presidential appointees, nine next last 12 months, there are two waiting senate confirmation. now if we can get that last session of congress before they go off in the mid-terms and two
just no -- nominated last week or the week before. and once they get through the senate, we're done. we will have filled all the vacancies in the department. >> host: thank you. mr. secretary, you mentioned that after 13 years of war, it is difficult to take on a new fight. until recently the american public, speaking as a broad generalization, had very limited appetite for further military action in the mid-east. should we be preparing the american public for the idea that in radical jihad, we are dealing with something like a chronic disease and something like coping with the former soviet union during the cold war, we were going to have to be prepared for the long indefinite future, to be ready to use military force, and we can't
phase in and out of an appetite for that? >> guest: i always resist a little bit comparisons and analogy to other situations. isil has shown a certain level of danger that constitutes a threat to our vital interests as a nation, and to americans and to others in a coalition that is being assembled as we speak right now, such that the only responsible thing to do is to take them on before they grow even more dangerous. they've cost the world scores in human lives, innocent people, innocent muslims, and this type of organization, this type of terrorist threat, simply has to
be engaged. we can't avoid it. >> host: has there been in the change in your viewpoint since you went from our former job at dod to now in terms of appropriate tactics, philosophies? >> guest: that's interesting. when i left the department of defense in 2012, and i was back in private life for a year, and then i came back, rather unexpectedly, to be secretary of homeland security, and that one year off, gives me a unique perspective. i came back a year later. i had not read intelligence reports for a year. get to read "the new york times" but not intelligence reports for a year, and i found it was still a dangerous world, but the danger is evolving in ways i described in my remarks.
a different kind and character. it's not the al qaeda of 2001 anymore. it's the more decentralized threat, and so i -- it's disappointing, still a dangerous world, still a dangerous world for americans, which is why we have to act. >> host: i'm going to touch on immigration which i know is on people's minds because i'm sure you'll are get questions from the members. let me ask you this question, cyber. it's under your aegis. i'd be interested if you would go into how well prepared the county the government is, the private sector, and perhaps particular emphasis on the power grid, the air, and our financial system. >> guest: because of the interconnectivity of the interit in. critical infrastructure, we have to be -- cybersecurity is one of
my principle priorities in office. i really want to advance the ball on cyber security. and cyber security involves the security of critical infrastructure because of our reliance on cyber on the internet and the interconnectivity of it's all. i think that through the president's executive order last year, and the cybersecurity framework we set up in february of this year, meant for -- to set forthbest practices in the private sector, we have made real progress on cybersecurity. i'm impressed by the level of sophistication in certain private sector. the financial sector, for example, i'm sure you know, steve, is very sophisticated, very adapt at cyber security.
major financial institutions are making great strides. but even the most sophisticated bank benefits from information sharing with the department of homeland security and my department's responsible for coordinating the federal government's response to securing the dot-gov world and the.com world. we have the national cybersomething -- it's basically where we conduct our operations to secure the dot-com, dot-gov world. i've been impressed by the speed with which our operation center is in contact with the goldman sachs, citigroups, bank of america, others in the business sector. they have relationships on a first-name basis with the cybersecurity experts in the private sector, and i've been impressed how quickly we get information out, we get
information back about cyberattacks. but we have cyber attacks on this nation on a daily basis. of a different kind and character from a whole spectrum of actors. and so we have a real problem. and i wrote an op-ed yesterday about cybersecurity legislation. there is bipartisan support right now for cybersecurity legislation. i was pleased the house homeland security committee on a bipartisan basis, led by mike mccall and ben thompson, got a bell through the entire house. there's activity in the senate, homeland security committee, tom carper, tomkoburn, are interested in advancing legislation, the senate intelligence commitee, dianne feinstein, saxby champ bliss, interested in advancing this. so we have opportunity to codify
dhs's authority, to codify the private sector's authority in freedom to share information with the government. i'm interested in enhancing my hiring capability, to bring in more cybersecurity talent i can steal a. from finance services sector. and so we have a lot of work to do without doubt. information sharing of best practices is one of the keys to that. >> host: your comment on legislation anticipated my next question. at the time of the financial crisis, the federal reserve and the treasury found they did not have all the legislative powers they wished they had, and given the warning we have, it would be tragic if we didn't -- >> guest: that's my plea. there is in my judgment, some legal uncertainty, at least in the minds of some, about my
authority to respond to a cyberattack in the private sector, and even in the dot-gov world and private sector businesses worry about civil liable they may face if theysive information with the government. so we need he help of congress to provide clarity there. everybody talks about cybersecurity and thed need for legislation. just have to reach agreement on it. we have good leadership and i'm hope neglect quibbling amount of time remaining in -- dwindling amount of time they'll take it on. >> this meeting is on the record. there are invited members of this press here. when you have questions please wait for the mic and speak directly into it, and please stand, state your name and
affiliation, and please only a single question, and concise, so as many members as possible can ask their questions. for those participating via teleconference, reminder, e-mail your questions to question question art cfr.org. -- email@example.com. now. madam. >> i am a journalist, taking up what you said about concern about home-grown terrorist and terroris in the u.s. choose, you deal with the fact that some budding terrorists can very easily go to some state where there are very few restrictions, none really enforced, get assault weapons, get handguns, walk around in the street with them, walk around even in the airport with them. isn't this a human hole in your protection of people in this country when terrorists, in this
country, can get lethal weapons right here and turn them on us? >> without directly commenting on various gun control ideas out there, as you know that's obviously a hotly debated subject. i am concerned. put handguns aside for the moment. put assault weapon as i side. i am concerned about how easy it is for somebody to buy in an open fashion, materials, explosives, precursors to explosives, pressure cookers, that can be used to cause mass destruction, mass violence, and we saw an example of that in boston last year. and so we can't, and we shouldn't, prohibit the sale of a pressure cooker.
we can sense ties retail businesses to be on guard for suspicious behavior by those who buy kind of stuff. and one reason i'm concern about domestic-based acts of mass violence is the ease with which somebody can assemble things that in and of themselves are not dangerous, but put them all together, and them combine that with some of the learning on the internet that various groups put out. and i'm not promoting anything in particular. it combines for a serious concern, and a serious homeland security concern, and so i -- as i mention any remarks decided we
need to make as large part of the homeland security mission, countering violent extremism at home and outreach to community groups. i mentioned i was with a syrian-american community organization in chicago, and i was impressed by the extent to which the people that i met in that room that day had, i think, a good sense of the pulse of their community there. and so this is something that we have to address, and we see it in multiple forms and fashions repeatedly. with different motives. and it's obviously something we have to address. >> the lady back there. >> mr. secretary, in your definition of syrian foreign tigers, fight -- fighters -- in
your definition of the syrian foreign fighters do you include hezbollah, who is fighting by the side of the regime in damascus? and in the coalition that you have referred to, will russia and iran be part of this coalition, given particularly their support of bashar al-assad and your fighting isil, his enemy. >> second question first. i refer you to the remark of the president tonight. don't want to get laid of my boss or anybody else's boss. the way we think of syrian foreign fighters, anybody who goes to syria from outside syria to take up the fight. one way or another. as simple as that. maybe a little more nuance to the definition but that's my understanding of it. >> the gentleman behind you.
>> farouk, ethan allen, after 9/11 there was a great concern that our actions -- i had an opportunity to go with president bush to the mosque in washington. after 13 years, we have -- there's a tremendous amount -- increase terrorism has increased. caliphates have increased. my question is how much of a concern there is that a billion muslims are perceiving these actions a weakening muslims? >> well, we work side-by-side in our cower -- counterterrorism effort with a lot of muslim countries. i spend time in the middle east.
and we need to continually stress that, as i said in my remarks, isil is not islamic. there's no religion that would condone isil's tactics. i said -- i've said several times that in the fight that we take up against certain groups, if they are able to recruit faster than we can take somebody off the battlefield, we're in a losing battle. and that is a calculus that can tip the wrong way very easily. a lot of it depends on the public perception of what we're doing. and so i believe that right now, we and others in nato our friends in the region, are in a position to mobilize
international public opinion, including in the muslim world, about the dangers of isil. it is an organization that is dangerous and a threat to the muslim world to innocent muss lips, and i think we're poised to make that case, and we are making that case against isil. much like the coalition that was formed right after 9/11. >> professor collins. former colleague of mine. >> you made a great speech. you showed an admirable concern for the impact on our domestic legal system of national security problems. you have also shown a good awareness of international potential, but could you say something about international law? i wonder, is a read every day about our actions in response to
these threats, to what extent is international law an obstacle to what extent is it considered irrelevant, to what extent is it a facility for your work? >> good question. i never -- i would never regard law as an obstacle. somebody in their wisdom enacted a law, developed a body of law, in my prior life as general counsel of defense department, when i gave legal signoff to a military operation, i always, almost always, looked at two things, domestic legal authority and international legal authority. and the way i and others in this administration tend to, when i was acting as lawyer in this administration -- the way we
tend to view international law and domestic law, we ask the question, is there legal authority for something? rather than, there is anything in the law that would stop me? is there legal authority for something? and i have found that international law, almost without exception, is consistent with basic common sense. principles of self-defense, principles of consent, host nation consent, for example, in military operations. pretty much are consistent with common sense. and without getting too deeply into my prior legal life, i know that it there are some who want to see us develop a body of international law around, you
know, principles of humanitarian crisis, when there's a humanitarian crisis, residing entirely within a particular country, how do we deal with that from an international legal perspective? i think that's something worth looking at. we're carefully considering. but succumb through my anytime national security something of an international legal practitioner, and spent a lot of time with other lawyers and other departments of ministry of defense and so forth, and it's an evolving principle but international law is an enabler and not a obstacle. >> this gentleman there. thank you.
>> thank you. innovation international. mr. secretary, i haven't heard the word "ebola" spoken. you're responsible nor boreds and all that goes with it. what do you think can be done, will be done, should be done in terms of protecting the country from one guy or two people coming in on an airplane. >> good question. i -- you're correct, i did not refer to ebola in my remarks but definitely refer to ebola in any daily job. part over the day job. i get briefings on it almost on a daily basis, and it is a virus that, as few you know, is growing -- as you know is growing in west africa and the three countries in west africa. there is a certain level of screening that is done of those who are leaving the country, getting on planes at airports
there, from the three most affected countries, my understanding is there's no direct flights to the united states. you have to go through about three or four different transit points. and what i've asked my staff to look at is whether, in addition to what we're already doing, there's more that we should do and we can do that is reasonable and responsible to screen people for any signs of the disease, of the virus, as they're leaving, so that what you mentioned doesn't happen. i think we need to continually evaluate that, and we are. >> madam, you have been patient. >> thank you for your service. i just want to pick one what you were saying about the life cycle and the recruitment process.
to what extent do you feel there's sufficient or -- when you bring up -- this is not islam, it's isil is not islam to whom we addressing that? what leadership level? i don't know -- maybe i don't read enough international press -- but i don't hear leadership voices condemn that kind of violence as nonislamic, coming from the islamic states themselves. to what extent someone could -- see you address that -- >> the message from somebody like me is intended principally for the domestic audience. we have people in this country looking for -- two feel disaffected, who are -- who may be tempted by acts of violence to look for something to glamorize, to radiate to, and there have been one or two examples in the media that you
all know about of this. and i heard somebody say that isil is protecting innocent muslims. it's not protecting innocent muslims. we have an audience in this country that can and should be reached about the dangers of this organization. and i believe that what i can do and what the department can do is outreach to the communes that themselves have the most credibility in this area, to partner with them, to help them within their own communities. >> a followup to the lady's question, other than exhortation, what are we doing -- we know the countries where pay masters to the terrorist's reside. what are we doing to lean on
those countries to clamp down on money going to these organizations to proselytize for radical jihad, et cetera? >> i guess i refer you to my diplomatic colleagues in the administration. i know that is a continual dialogue, and so i refer to my diplomatic colleagues on that one. >> okay. madam? >> thank you very much. my name is nina and i work in the field of public health, and i have another question of ebola. this is an epidemic that is in three countries, and with every case we identify, we know that there's somewhere between ten and 100 people that person has had contact with. so in addition to the work you're doing on airport screening and who is coming in, tell us about your thinking about the role of your department in actually working in those high-burden countries or ravaging -- epidemics to stem
the flow. >> my department itself should be focused on the homeland. we have a halve affairs capability -- health affairs capability in the department of home lean -- homeland security. obviously there's cdc, which is heavily engaged in this situation. hhs in general, i know, is very engaged in this, and i hope collaboratively together we have job to do, and there are a number of u.s. government personnel on the continent right now addressing this, and as i mentioned a moment ago, i think we need to continually evaluate the need for screening at last point of departure, at airports before people leave the country.
>> thank you. stewart,. thank you for your service, difficult and thankless job. you messengered 9/11 and how moving it was and for many it was a turning opinion. president obama commented at this number one national security concern is a nuclear bomb going off in new york city. we know that terrorists would like to have that spectacular impact. my question is regarding hr1 and the container screening and scanning requirements. there is technology being tested by the department to effectively and passively scan 100% of cargo coming into the united states. me question is, how do you feel about that. i know what your testimony has been on the hill. how do you feel about that requirement, and given technology that's being tested, i would no do a pilot program on some of these potential devices
that could dramatically protect the homeland? >> i know a certain amount of testing has bun done. i'm very familiar with the 100% scanning requirement put into law in 2007. there is -- for those who might not know there, is a law that says that the department shall, shall, scan 100% of the cargo that leaves foreign ports, bound for the united states. now, to be honest, it huge ununfundded mandate. congress said you have to do this but didn't give us the now pay for it, and there is a provision in that law that everybody two years, permits the secretary of homeland security to waive it. i'll tell you what i've said publicly and said privately to those who believe in this very
strongly, congressman adler, leader pelosi, congressman thompson, senator markey, it's a -- it's a great idea. there are huge logistical challenges to united states -- the united states government, u.s. personnel, now scanning the cargo at foreign ports, at every important port around the globe with stuff bound for the united states, and though i recently waived the require of the law, what i've said is that, as long that's law is on the books, we should at least strive in that direction. we have -- need to have a plan for getting to 100% and should strive in that direction. we should raise that percentage and do the best we can with it. with the resources and the
budget resources that we have. and so that's a direction i've told our folks to move in. >> let's go to the back. lady in the far back. >> thank you, secretary. claudia torrance. on immigration, can you tell us about your deportations review? we believe dish understand -- ask correct me if i'm wrong -- you made some recommendations to the president on that. can you tell us what recommendations were those, and also, what do you think about president's executive decision to delay executive action? >> the president and i, along with the department of justice, are in continual discussions about the ways in which we can and should fix our broken immigration system, and it is a broken system.
that includes a re-evaluation of our pry ores for deportations, for -- priorities for deportations. what-under priorities should be, can they be clearer or adjusted? that's part of our overall review. as you know the president has determined that we should wait until after the mid-term elections to announce what we believe we can and should do to fix the system, and he reached that decision because -- this judgment is, my my view, absolutely correct -- this kind of thing should not by introduced in a politically different climate like you have in the runup to an election. there have been examples cited of that in 1994, gun control, the healthcare law, in the runup to an election in a political
season, what the presidents are's talk about, and i agree, what we do -- because this is so important -- needs to be done in a sustainable way. and doing this in a sustainable way is as important in my judgment, as what we do and what we say we're going to do, and so after the mid-terms we'll have some announcements. aagree with the president it's always preferential to have action by congress, and there are certain things we simply cannot do to fix the system within the confines of existing law. so, legislation is all this preference and there was a very comprehensive piece of legislation, as i'm sure you are you know, passed by the senate last year, supported by the business community, organized labor, if the polls are to be believed, the majority of northwestern public, who support comprehensive immigration
reform, who support fixing our broken immigration system, but the house has not acted on it, and we have a broken system. and so we're going to do what we can to fix the broken immigration system. and we want to do that in a sustainable way. >> mr. secretary, thank you very much for your remarks and your great answers to questions. [applause] [inaudible conversations]
[inaudible conversations] >> chuck haigle and the chairman of the joint chiefs-general martin dempsey, will testify about u.s. strategy to combat the militant group isis. we'll have live coverage starting at account 30:00 a.m. eastern from the senate armed services committee on c-span3. and later in the day, a look at the international response to the ebola outbreak in west africa. witnesses include the head of the national institute of allergy and infectious diseases and health workers who treated people infect width the virus. the joint senate health committee hearing is live at 2:30 on c-span3. >> a memorial on president obama's strategy against the militant group isis. from "wall street journal," this
40 minutes. >> a senior national security correspond for the daily beast, frequent guest teen "wall streee washington journal" and obama's war on isis may be illegal. and ely lake, let's start by laying ute the white house legal argument its everss in iraq and sir. >> guest: when president obama authorized bombing in iraq for the first time since 2011, the authorization was that the constitution -- the first article says congress only declares war, but the second part says that the president is the commander in chief, and presidents before him have used article 2 saying he is the commander-in-chief of the military, and as the president has a responsibility to keep american citizens and american interests secure, and he used that as presidents before him have used those powers. but the problem is in 1973,
there's something called the war powers act, which was a reaction to using these kinds of inharen constitutional authorities to wage very long, drawn-out wars. the classic example everybody opinions out there was never a declaration of war against vietnam. the vietnam war was always seen as a police action, although it was probably our longest and worst war from the perspective of just casualties -- i'm sorry. civil war would be the worst in terms of casualties. so in 1973 congress passed the war powers act and that said every 30 or 60 days president needed to inform congress about these kinds of prolonged activities, and tried to narrow what exactly could count as that. so a certainly a rescue operation in syria would count as something that would be covered under the war powers clause and the clause in the constitution, but once you start getting beyond basic stuff, like protecting u.s. interests and u.s. personnel, as the bombing
campaign in iraq quickly did -- remember, it then became to protect and prevent humanitarian reasons a genocide against iraqi minorities. then imit became protecting crucial iraqi infrastructure, the dam, and he used the phrase, prevents isil from actions that could cripple permanently cripple iraq. so, as the war expanded, i believe that at the white house was looking for another rationale for that. now, then it gets to something called the 2001 authorization for the use of military force. really that is the post three days after 9/11 congress says we are declaring war on those who are responsible for 9/11, and that quickly became obviously al qaeda, and was used by both bush and obama as the legal justification for airstrikes, indefinite detention of individuals not u.s. >> al qaeda but also associated
forces of al qaeda as it became sort of argued in the courts. >> in your piece you say this is where they start to get into shaky legal ground by using that one applied to isis. >> guest: exactly. white aisle isis begins a as franchise of al qaeda is today a force that is really in competition and some cases at war with al qaeda's franchise in syria, and because the leader of isis right now, al back -- al-baghdadi, has -- they have -- there are sort of -- they correspond publicly and but but both acknowledged they're out of the eye- -- isis is no longer affiliated with al qaeda, so i called up some legal scholars who have sent are since written on their own in more detail, but the view was you couldn't really
say that isis was an associated force of al qaeda because they are formally kind of kicked them out. the administration's arguments, well is that corrected as al qaeda in iraq, and josh earnest dade clever thing. itself it walks like a terrorize and quacks like a terrorist, it's -- but i don't think that's going to pass the legal muster because it's hard to make this argument that isis is an associated force. it's actually a competing or a wholly separate force from al qaeda. >> is it leaving it up to the terror groups themselves to define who they're related to are to or what groups they come from? an argument the white house has been making is that shouldn't -- >> guest: first of all, this is independent entirely from whether or not the united states should be at war with al qaeda. i'm sorry, with isis. but the problem is, even before they used this justification for isis, there were a number of people who were very concerned
that the original purpose of the war resolution, get the people responsible for 9/11, had expanded to point it was injuring american airstrikes in somalia and pakistan yemen and all over the muslim world this. races the issue of, is this a recipe for kind of war without end? a permanent war, if you expand the definition of who was responsible for 9/11. bin laden is now dead. most of then leaders are either in guantanamo or killed. if you continue to define it out, and this original resolution becomes so elastic, it allows for permanent war that will last beyond obama's presidency, and maybe this new normal. so that's been a concern from not just a legal perspective but i think from a kind of political perspective. so, i think the alternative could have ban new resolution that would narrow and against isis that would just encompass
everything obama said we have to accomplish. i think there were the political votes there. certainly i think most republicans would have voted for and it a number of democrats as well based on the public statements. but -- i still don't really know -- i don't think that -- i don't know why exactly they haven't gone to congress but i can say the last time they went to congress, similar things, airstrikes in syria, this time against assad, a year ago, after assad violated the red line on chemical weapons, they ended up not having the votes. ... violated when assad he redline on "split cat weapons. >> and should congress hold a vote. f they did, should it happen before or after thee reelection? is there a chance something like that could happen before the election at this point? guest: we haven't seen house
boehner hold that vote. we haven't seen harry reid say that vote yet. via the thing is that if they have the military perspective you have baghdadi in your sites and he's in syria, then would you not been take a shot if you knew you could get him because you didn't have a formal authorization yet and that is why they are searching they do have that authority. >> host: we are talking with eli lake of the daily beast. if you have questions or comments as we go to the segment "washington journal" democrats (202)585-3880 republicans (202)585-3881 independents (202)585-3882 and outside the u.s. (202)585-3883. as you are calling and we want to note that we use the term and you have used the term long-term war, and the war in iraq.
secretary of state john kerry was on face the nation yesterday and was asked about calling the fight against against isis they were. here's what he had to say and i want to get your thoughts. >> would the clear up one thing first. this week you went to some lengths to say you wouldn't call this a war but yet at the pentagon and at the state department they were saying we are at war with isis. are we at war? >> well bob i think there is frankly a kind of tortured debate going on about terminology. what i'm focused on obviously is getting done what we need to get done to isil but if people need to find a place to land in terms of what we did in iraq originally this is not a war. this is not combat troops on the ground. it's not hundreds of thousands of people and it's not that kind of mobilization. but in terms of al qaeda which we have used the word war with
yeah we went to war with al qaeda and its affiliates and in the same context yes we are at war with isil in that sense. i think it's a waste of time to focus on that. let's consider what we have to do to degrade and defeat isil and that's what i'm frankly much more focused on. >> host: supplement the daily beast. bringing up al qaeda and isis here in the same sentence. >> guest: i mean, it's a war because the united states will try to seize its assets kill its leaders and take its territory. they won't do that for now with combat troops on the ground although there are over 1000 americans in iraq since june. they will be using airpower to do so and nobody at any point ever said we weren't at war with al qaeda even though there were not combat troops in pakistan or yemen or various other places. so it's a little precious to sort it here cary say that.
that says to me kind of interesting because john kerry has been i think i'll front on the thing the united states needed to stop and defeat isis in the face of evil last night. the president was one that was very reluctant. we saw president go from degrade to defeat i guess or destroy isis so the president i think was the last holdout there and i think kerry's main point is that there is in the same invasion now think they are republicans clamoring -- clamoring for that either. >> host: we are talking with eli lake of the daily beast. his recent piece from last week obama's newborn isis may be illegal. we will start with matthew and mechanicsville maryland on our line for republicans. matthew good morning. >> caller: good morning and thank you for taking my call. i have heard, with my comment i have said in other ways and i will try to do my best here but i can remember -- on iraq in the
fifth grade and we have been in that area for 25 years now. if you are an adult way and listening to these people and seeing the way that they define the actions we are taking over their it's starting to smell test. you are kind of letting people that don't have united states in their best interest to find a way to approach security issues. you can hear it from the way the president tries to use different acronyms to describe it. these are the same people if anything that we were fighting in afghanistan. you can just read general history like universal history books on the topic. they are learning despite us in a way that they can define the term and this is just from what i have noticed from the semantics that are only theirs
are using. they are trying to fill the knobs with fighting and it's like if they just read some general history in the area they would figure out who they are fighting. they are the same people. >> host: eli lake. >> guest: there's an ideology. we do college college a hodus in. we could call it islamic extremism. it's not the same as the religion of islam. in fact we know that muslims are often the first and worst and they are the most victims i suppose that these barbarians. the caller does have a point. the ideology that motivated bin laden is the same that idolizes baghdadi. it brings back this caliphate and basically would enslave all women. it would make it illegal to be anything but a muslim or jewish or christian you could take a -- pay a tax that it's gruesome
stuff. i would fair to say it's protected by the people who have to live under it and we have seen that over and again. the only way you can enforce the ideology is through horrific and theatrical violence. it has also recruited i think a french group of losers in the west who feel that this is an opportunity to participate in some kind of world historical movement and it's true the united states has been fighting this for some time. i would say 9/11 was a huge point. the irony here is that the president has until really about june. obama has tried to say no no, no, no we are only at war with al qaeda central and only award the franchise in yemen and he is resisted the idea of talking about the enemy in this
ideological sense. there is this ideology and is probably wrong bronx zoo's political islam but is it extremist version of political islam. now he is facing that in the great irony of the earlier point about the 2001 authorization to use military force is that by saying that, that justice justifies it. he is making the work implicitly. even though the franchise of isis is fighting al qaeda's former franchise in. they are still fellow travelers and that's the same ideology. there was a real live revealing interview with hillary clinton who has talked about addressing this ideological element and saying it was similar to america's war against totalitarian communism during the cold war. so in that respect i think it's wrong to say that these are the same people because they show the same faith of islam because
they're summoning muslims of us against them. when i went to iraq as a reporter i spoke to several tribal sheikhs who had come to reject al qaeda even though they felt they reached a pragmatic deal with them. i think in those cases such as some of the sum bari shakes, not all of them they want al qaeda in this ideology is an enemy for life. they face the brutality themselves. >> host: rome georgia, davis is waiting on line for republicans. davis, good morning. >> caller: good morning. first of all i would like to say this war is because of the lies from george bush and dick cheney and rumsfeld. you have these guys appearing on tv. "the new york times" about an article that these think tanks are taking money from overseas in order to influence what they say united states government.
he was also captured by the american military in iraq and turned loose. the very same people who john mccain. >> host: davis you are calling in on our line for republicans. do you disagree with republicans in congress and how they're handling this? >> i am more like ron paul. i don't believe in this war. >> host: go ahead. >> guest: first of all ron paul is now giving his lunatic opinions on the rp network. he is taking direct payment from a foreign government and a foreign government that just invaded and occupied ukraine. second of all you hear this a lot and certainly politicians lie. you can sort of debate this stuff but the truth of the matter is this president is uninterested in a war until isis
which is sort of a terrorist army was able to take over in iraq's second-largest city and became engaged when they threaten to wipe out the last of the cds in iraq. now that we have three recent internet videos of the beheading of westerners i think it has moved world opinion to the point where they realize that they cannot live in a world in which you have the equivalent of al qaeda standing in the middle of the middle east. now those are just facts. this is what this group has done. the argument that you could leave her alone and they would leave us alone i think is clearly, i think it's discredited by events so i would just leave it there. >> host: eli lake is a security correspondent with the daily beast and previously worked with the "washington times," their public in the "new york sun." how many times have you traveled overseas to iraq and egypt? >> guest: i've been to iraq on three occasions on three
different extended trips. i've been to the region several times. i've been to sudan and i've been fortunate enough to travel in my job. >> host: he is here to take questions and comments for the next 20 minutes or so. joseph is up next from cortland new york on our line for independents. good morning. >> caller: good morning, how are you doing? i want to thank you for taking my call. >> host: go ahead joseph. >> caller: i was listening to all the people complaining blah blah blah but as a military person served in vietnam and gulf war and bosnia i will tell you something. i have met a lot of different people muslims, arabs, jewish, whatever you want to call them roman catholics. my mom at my grandmother were in a concentration camp. they escaped because my father helped them. this here i think it is a legal war against muslims. not all muslims are the same as we think they are.
we have a group of people in america of the ku klux klan, organized crime and some neo-nazi groups. >> host: eli lake i will let you jump in if you want to. >> guest: it is correct. i think it's a fair analogy to say that al qaeda and isis are to islam and muslims as the ku klux klan is to christianity and perversion in anatiere's violent frame so that they correct analogy. >> host: ernie is on our line for independents in colorado. >> caller: i have a few questions here. as far as isis and al qaeda are they not one in the same just different terminology for isis and as far as going into syria and iraq to bomb them, is this just another roundabout way to go when and get assad out of
power? and that my third question is, the bush administration and the obama administration neither one of them want to release the 20 pages of 9/11 and i was just wondering why. >> host: eli lake. >> guest: i don't know why they won't release the pages. ike's suspect is because it implicates the saudi government. i think that's probably it. on the second i don't think these airstrikes are a threat to the assad regime although it's true that assad has had an opportunistic relationship with these alter jihadist. he certainly worked with them and they were friendly foreign fighters into iraq. he is fighting them now and the civil war but not consistently. he has gone after much more moderate encampments of the free syrian army and is largely left some of these isis positions in syria untouched. he is i think intended to create a choice. it's either me or these lunatics.
that said, what was the first thing? >> guest: husk of the general question about isis and al qaeda. >> guest: we talk about that. isis began as an al qaeda franchise and they shared the same ideology but the two groups are very much competitors and certainly distinct. the key here is both zawahiri and baghdadi have said that themselves and that's most important point which is they have said you are no longer a formal affiliate of al qaeda. so that i think is why they are the same organization. >> host: one thing i did wind do to get to talk about is your latest column in the daily beast contractors ready ready to catch ready to cash in on a isis war. >> guest: first of all i want to point out that people who are military contractors along of them have headlong important careers in a military usually the tip of the spare. there's nothing wrong with going
into the security contractor industry. i'm not one of these like jeremy scahill who thinks it's all suspect. but that said the president has set a couple of things that are noteworthy. number one, this is going to take more than a few months. remember he said it not going to be weeks is going to not be months and now he's saying it's going to be a few years probably lasting beyond his presidency. he has promised no combat boots on the ground so when you have that their companies triple canopy academy that just emerged that are specialists in training local forces similar to our greene berets and the military. so turning them into these fighting forces has been done by contractors for some time now. so the view is that it's probably going to be a lot of reliance on these contractors. an irony because of course
blackwater was very much associated with the republican party and joe biden himself i think in the first term promised to prosecute blackwater and the justice department so forth. this administration politically tried to distance themselves from these contractors i would say it's almost certain the contractors themselves who i interviewed say that they believe this will present a business opportunity for them and obama will be relying on the work. >> host: we are talking to eli lake about a few of his recent columns. you can see them on line the daily beast.com and he's here to answer your questions or comments. atlanta georgia is up next, al is waiting on her line for democrats. good morning. >> caller: yes, good morning. i would just like to get something understood here. i do know that obama, first of all i do agree with what obama is doing. he has a hard job. i mean gosh i don't know of anybody who would want a job
like that. the question is it seems like the talk is out now that he had to have the permission of congress to do things. why is it that going back 20 some years or so that president reagan did not have to have the permission or i believe he did not have, maybe i'm wrong but he didn't have to have the permission from congress to send army troops into granada. nor did high -- he i please have permission to send a thousand combat marines into lebanon where there were over 400 men that got killed. i wonder if he could answer that. >> guest: sure. the constitution as legal scholars would say has to be used. one is the congress declares war and the other is the present is the commander-in-chief of the military. modern presidents including reagan have said that article
too gives him the authority to do things such as grenada but i was in grenada it was a very limited operation. it was to save medical students from a direct communist coup. in a case of what we are envisioning against isis by the person's own admission it's a long war. not just weeks or months. it's not a couple of their strike somewhere out. so that's one factor that plays in it. i'm not a lawyer but i think that's an important difference. i think there's a broader point beyond the law and that is that while we saw in the bush years was that despite even a resolution authorizing the iraq war, once that war went badly, once there were weapons of mass distraction that were founded became a very partisan issue. when you can have the kind of resolution that authorizes a war like this it's a way of having a political body and so that you avoid having that were becoming a partisan issue.
this should not be considered, in my view it shouldn't be a democratic or republican were. it should be an american war and that's one benefit of having one of these authorizations a thing. >> host: cluster virginia, robert on line for democrats. robert good morning. >> caller: good morning to you. i served with the 82nd airborne in a couple of decades ago. ics not being able to squander our resources in a more. when you have an iraqi army and that runs away after a decade of training, why are we the policeman of the world? why do we have to involve ourselves? we can afford this anymore. >> guest: i think that is a viewpoint that has been gaining a lot of supporters recently. certainly this idea about americans not being the policeman of the world. here's the great irony. the 2000 republican convention
condoleezza rice and her introduction to the mass media i guess gives a speech in which he says america is not the world's 911. then 9/11 happens and of course we become even more engaged in islam for which the president obama has tried to get us out of. now he has been dragged back in. i think it's true that america shouldn't be the only kind of nation of last resort to engage in these nation-building. it's so frustrating. i was there seeing a lot of these on-the-job training from the last decade where the american military man toward iraqi military and to see them throw down their weapons in mosul. i'm not making any excuses for it because i think that in some ways does show the limits of american power but one of the factors that led i think to failure of the iraqi military in
mosul is that the prime minister nouri al-maliki governed in many ways like the shia saddam. he alienated the sunni minorities and others including the kurds in his own country and replace a lot of competent military leaders with cronies and tried to consolidate his power to weigh a petty dictator with. people don't want to fight for someone like that or something like that. so that i think is another factor. all things worse for that political component. i'm not entirely sure we have seen that this is a matter of just that we failed in training them. i think malik he felt as a leader and i think we failed in trying to use our influence to stop malik e. from doing what he is doing which is tearing the country apart. >> host: marietta ohio, rich is on our line for democrats. you are on with eli lake from the daily beast. >> caller: just curious,
people declare war on us and we just ignore it. before 9/11 they declared war on us and they were too small to cause trouble. world war ii, pearl harbor they attacked first and then declared war. why we kept all the ships together and didn't pay attention is beyond me. we can't be asleep at the switch. the other thing is we ought to look at 9/11. who is getting the benefit from shoring the markets and what countries and what people and study that and find out whether it was just a tad. as a financial attack on our country to set us back. >> host: eli lake on being asleep at the switch. >> guest: that is the way things usually in united states are attacked them and they are surprised like 9/11. since 9/11 there have been enormous amount of resources. military intelligence in trying to prevent another one of these mass casualty attacks and track
these terrorist groups. i would say i think the united states is much better at fighting a war on terror since it started fighting after 9/11. >> host: carnegie pennsylvania patrick is on line for democrats. good morning. >> caller: when i listen to your guess is almost astonishing when i listen to the level of deceit particularly when it comes to the fact of the word existential threat. the only existential threat to the united states of america is the israeli government which represents a true existential threat which was an active participant in 9/11. >> host: eli lake would you like to jump in? >> guest: i would like to jump in. make sure sir that you are listening to a man and a white lab coat. he's only trying to help your recovery and i wish you luck with the mental illness. >> host: gem from winston-salem on our line for republicans. good morning. >> caller: good morning. the problem with what we have today is the same problem we have had with washington as a
whole. republicans and democrats, we do the same thing in the same manner expecting the same -- a different result and we never get that. evidently they aren't enough people to realize we are not at war with isil. if we have a problem let's go take care of it quickly and be done with it. we are not a walk at war with the whole muslim world even though the nose? with this particular group when there's a conflict and who caused conflict? i haven't heard anyone call it a war or conflict but let's let them take care of the problem. they killed two of our citizens and if we need to bomb them let's just go bomb them and get out. >> guest: that is what we are doing. i mean yeah i agree. i think it's an ideological component that you probably can't win just bombing and military action alone. >> host: do you want to talk about the coalition that is
being built here? some headlines on a lot of the front pages of major papers arab nations offering airpower and u.s. strikes against isis although unnamed arab nations at this point. >> guest: well i think it's been a harder slog in harder slog in some ways than they originally anticipated but keep in mind this entire effort has really caught the white house. the white house did not want to do that. they have been reluctant at every stage. i think every stage is taken longer than i thought. i don't think it was a particularly fruitful meeting between kerry and president al-sisi former general al-sisi in egypt and i think americans someways lacks the influence it did before. but that said particularly for the gulf states, particularly for saudi arabia and united arab emirates they know that while they been saying for sometime that iran is the number one threat they know that groups like isis these real radical extremist are also a major
threat and i think in that sense i have an interest here in trying to defeat them. although i have to say they came two years ago to the united states, three years ago when syria was involved in the civil war. obama pretty much declined so they might be saying too little too late but at this point the u.s. is engaged and they will eventually end up helping. >> host: a few minutes left with eli lake of the daily beast. trying to get as many calls as we can. freeman has been waiting for a while from sioux falls south dakota on the line for independents. good morning. >> caller: good morning. listening to this guy here and he started talking about what i wanted to talk about. the fact is that president barack obama had tried to keep this out of the syrian mass than people like mccain and probably guys like this guy here
when the conflict for started basically one of boots on the ground and things like that. isil pasta and we had the ukrainian deal and the president wasn't willing to just jump in there to risk american troops lives. he went out to make sure he was able to -- just like with the germans and the english and the surrounding countries just like in the mideast. if the americans would have gone in there like mccain would have won if we would have would have been sitting there with probably 100,000 troops and still five to 10 years from now trying to figure out how to get out of. >> host: let's let the eli lake talk about it. >> guest: i don't think that's the case. i think that if they would have let 10 or 20,000 stay like in iraq i think there would have been more political influence and also more political
influence in united states against maliki to save him from himself so to speak. a lot of it is probably could've been prevented. >> host: do you think i would have influence what happened with iraqi forces? >> guest: the troops on on what donna donna. president obama had a point when he had a press conference in martha's vineyard. if there were troops there and those troops would bring with it some more kind of sense of seriousness in the political influence in there is an active ambassador and i think jeffrey by the way was pretty active in this. if there was a policy at the very top of u.s. government that u.s. was going to really try to influence maulik e. and say we will sell you the f-16s but you have to leave the military alone. you have to make a deal with the kurds and you have to do this and you have to do that in tribes two uses influence with maulik instead of leaving the
impression hey where it appear appeared. who will treat you like any other nation pay think that probably could've save a lot of heartache. maybe that's not a satisfying answer because i know there's one view that if we were just less -- left the troops it would not happen. i think it would have just been about leaving troops there. >> host: key part new jersey, edward said are lying republicans. >> caller: i think we are legitimizing them and if they want to live in a theocratic state in the 21st century if they want to be drinking chickpea cola. like blue jeans rock 'n roll killed communism anyway. >> host: explain what you would do here. what do you think united states should do? >> caller: well i mean i personally believe that their regime is to fall flat on their face. they make a good breakfast but a
poor dinner so they want to fall flat on their face and be left in the dirt. these people are going to come out the word work and come and get us but i believe we have a lot more to worry about in america. the poor people in america are going to perish a lot faster than jihadist out there so. >> guest: i just disagree with that. i like the expression may be a good breakfast but not a good dinner but i say with all due respect this is an organization that is just pure evil and they will be a threat to our allies and eventually to us. they have made it very clear that they intend to attack us and they make a million dollars a day. they are able to consolidate their gains. they will use that to threaten not just the united states but all of our allies. i think we will ultimately do a good thing by trying to his destroyed them. >> host: mohamed is a brooklyn
new york on her line for independents. >> caller: hi thank you for taking my call. i want to ask eli mary al-maliki was the shia prime minister of iraq and saddam hussein was a dictator and also a sunni. if you have the opportunity to choose to go back in time what would be better for iraq, saddam hussein or nouri al-maliki? your personal opinion? >> guest: i think maulik is better than saddam. i don't even have to think about that. if you are familiar with the horrors of saddam hussein and by the way saddam hussein was a sunni but defined itself as a secular baathists. saddam was truly one of the most evil figures in the 20th century. he brutalized the iraqi people. he was a threat to his neighbors and i threat to the united states. as bad as maulik he was you
can't compare them. i use the phrase she is saddam because of his consolidation of power and going after other sunni political leaders such as vice president's was saddamesque but didn't reach the level of pure barbaric. >> host: eli lake in his latest piece contractors ready to cash in on my sis were paid in kind at that -- find at the daily beast.com. we are at appreciate you stopping by. >> guest: thanks for having me.
>> now nato secretary general anders fogh rasmussen discusses the future of nato, relations with russia and the continuing threat posed by the islamic militant group isis. mr. rasmussen's five-year term as secretary-general while and at the end of the month. this hour-long event is hosted by carnegie europe. >> ladies and gentlemen we have still a few seats and it would be fantastic but could fill it up completely. the more or we get in the crowd the better today. let me welcome you all to this event at the deadly attack
survey. they say that when you made one since a coincidence. when you may twice its luck. when you meet three times it's a tradition and when he made four times you are an old couple. today marks the fourth time in five years that you mr. secretary-general have chosen to carnegie europe as the organization of the platform from which to address the foreign-policy and security policy in brussels in europe and the carnegie rasmussen relationship we have moved into old territory. it sounds out only if you don't put it into perspective for an organization like ours that is 130 or so. it's always nice to know that the 65-year-old young lady called nato still wants to play with us so it's great that is the nature of the old couple here today. more importantly we are proud that you've chosen us to give your farewell speech today with carnegie europe and you are
doing this despite the fact that in the past europe has been critical and that is i think the definition of being an old couple that you can do that to each other and still work together. when you started your tenure at nato you gave your first public speech in brussels carnegie europe and that was almost the day five years ago. apart from afghanistan which of course was featured prominently at the time that the topic of your venice beach was the relationship of nato with russia. he decided the beginning of your tenure at nato that you want to put a lot of effort into their relationship could you call the new beginning, the war in georgia had just happened obvious when everybody was still recovering from this and everybody still had high hopes. you wanted to make that a better relationship knowing that was the key variable in the architecture. as we know fresh hopes were replaced by old fears and that
is where we stand today. so i am sure today russia will feature prominently in your speech. not least because of the last few months you have been a key player in putting together a robust response to russia's actions in eastern europe, robust western response and like many other things you have done in the last five years that have not only made you friends. apart from this latest management of the western response you have of course used afghanistan, the afghanistan mission of nato and the experience that nato got out of that mission change the way the alliance works and the way things about it so. there was an important change i think that you you administered pdf reminded again and again member states that they were often not in compliance with promises they made earlier and you push those that were reluctant to show more dedication, to show more
dedication to opine solidarity which is a key issues that always surfaced when you spoke of. he did all of this during a time period by major political and economic crises shook europe and north america. nobody have the time to do it. no one wanted to look at the and difficult truth out of afghanistan and everybody thought it was crazy to even mention 2% of defense spending. no wonder was painful for some but you addressed. in the upcoming weeks when you are leaving your job is secretary-general will probably issue a sigh of relief that nagging man from denmark is finally leaving the stage but that sigh is perhaps more about them than it is about you. those guys when you hear them you should know that you have also earned them. we are looking forward today to
the last big rasmussen reminder of what atlantic security here for the european crowd and we thank you that you would speak to us. parallel to this event carnegie will publish an article you've written for us and what to point out the fundamentals of security. and in greater detail than the speech today i'm sure. we have printed copies for all of you. i think some of you have picked up a copy. available at the door and we will featured on our web site and through media channels. therefore invite you to take the floor let me say two quick things. thanks with two peter spiegel of the financial times. it's always great to lure you back into your old love which is security and defense which i know you are missing a whole lot and secondly mr. secretary-general you just told me that you can't announce what you will be doing is the first of october but whatever it is we wish you good luck and we are sure we will hear from you.
secretary-general, the floor is yours. thank you. [applause] >> thank you again for that very generous introduction and first of all thank you very much or your dedicated work for carnegie europe and your strong engagement in the public debate on foreign and security policy issues. and also a big word of thanks to carnegie europe for hosting our event. as you mentioned my very first speech as new secretary-general in september 2009 was also hosted by carnegie europe, so i feel that i have come full circle by delivering my last brussels speech as secretary-general, also hosted
by the carnegie europe endowment. and by the way, this deadly attack solvay also gives me sweet memories. actually it was in this very room that heads of state and government of the european union agreed on the economic framework for concluding negotiations with the african countries in october 2002. denmark held the rotating presidency of the european at that time so is prime minister of denmark i hosted the dinner for heads of state and government and we reached an agreement on the economic framework for concluding these negotiations which led to the
historic decision at the e.u. summit in copenhagen on the 30th of december. and and historic decision to launch the european union and actually the foundation was laid in this very room. this is my last month in office as nato secretary-general and i have to say these past five years have been the busiest and most challenging for nato and for me personally. nato has carried out demanding and difficult operations on three different continents and we have reformed and renewed our alliance to make it vitter, faster and more flexible. a new strategic concept, the action plan, smart defense, the
connective forces initiative, defense capacity building missile defense enhanced cyber defense. these are all major achievemen achievements. they demonstrate they discontinued ability to change into a death. so i'm confident that i will be leaving my good friend jens stoltenberg an alliance with a solid foundation and a quick compass and i'm sure he will do a great job in keeping nato stronger. keeping nato strong could not be more important. there is an ark of crisis and instability that stretches from the east to the south and it poses a threat to all populations and territories. we see challenges on a scale we have not seen for over two
decades and they will endure for years to come. we need to face this fact. to the east, there is russia. we have tried long and hard to build a partnership with russia in a way that respects russia's security concerns and based on international rules and norms. and as jen mentioned in fact my first speech as secretary of the general of nato five years ago was about developing a stronger partnership between nato and russia. regrettably, russia has rejected our efforts to engage. instead russia considers nato and the west more broadly as an
adversary. russia has trembled -- trampled all the rules and commitments that have kept peace in europe and beyond since the end of the cold war. the pattern is clear. from moldova to georgia and now ukraine russia has used economic pressure and military actions and use its ability to manufacture complex and to diminish the independence of its neighbors. to the south, there's a so-called islamic state. not a state, but a group committing horrific atrocities against thousands of people across iraq and syria. i strongly condemn the outrageous murders of american journalists fully and sotloff
and david haines. all stand resolute and united against the scourge of terrori terrorism. this group poses even more of a danger as it risks exporting terrorists to our countries. it also controls energy access and it is pouring oil on the fire of sectarianism already burning across the middle east and north africa. a region that is a tinderbox of porous borders, arms proliferation, weak governance and poverty. we are confronted by forces that reject our liberal democracy and our liberal, rules-based order.
their agendas and ideologies are different but they are serial and, violent and viciously anti-western. they will grasp at every opportunity to undermine our values of liberty, freedom, democracy, respect for the rule of law, and human rights. and to impose their backward looking vision on others. we are on the frontline of a new battle, a new battle between tolerance and fanaticism, between democracy and totalitarianism, between open and closed societies. in this new age, of an arrest --
unrest and revisionism, we must stand strong and we must stand united as a force for freedom. strengthen our collective defense, strengthen our community of nations and strengthen our collective engagement. first, we must strengthen our collective defense, our ability to defend our populations and our countries against any threat. in response to russia's aggression against ukraine, we immediately reinforced our defense and deterrence. and at the nato summit in wales, we agreed our groundbreaking readiness action plan, to make sure our response to any challenge is firm and fast.
our defense capabilities, military posture and political will must send a clear signal to any potential aggressor. we must also improve our ability to participate in an international crisis management. the threat posed by the so-called islamic state requires a military response to degrade and defeat this terrorist organization. and it was the credible threat of military strikes against syria that persuaded the assad regime to give up their chemical weapons. and it was the principle of responsibility to protect that lead the u.n. security council to mandate a military operation in libya.
we must be able, ready and willing to step up to the plate when conflicts can affect their own security. and we must improve our ability to help partners build their own security forces. if we train local security forces to take care of their local security we can project stability without necessarily projecting large numbers of our own troops. so we must do more to help our partners defend themselves, find their own solutions, and prevent crises in their regions before they emerge. that is why at the whales summit we launched a new defense capacity building initiative.
as an initial step, we extended it to georgia, jordan and moldova. and if the new government -- new government requests it, nato will consider a new defense capacity building mission for iraq as well. all this will require more investments in defense and security. at the whales summit, we turned a corner. the commitment to gradually increase defense investment over the next decade is a strong and united response to the arc of crises surrounding us. security comes at a cost but insecurity is much more expensive andfreedom doesn't
come for free. second, we must strengthen the global community of free societies that are devoted to democracy, market economy, the rule of law, human rights and respect for the liberal rules-based international order. europe and north america are at the core of the global communi community. the transatlantic bond is the bedrock of our shared security and our common values. we must continue to strengthen that community and to like-minded partners across the globe. we should invigorate our
economies by enhancing economic ties. more trade, more mutual investments. i welcome the free trade agreement between the european union and canada and i hope to see a rapid conclusion on negotiations under transatlantic trade between the european union and the united states. free trade and great investments will create jobs and set a strong example for others to follow. and a stronger economic partnership will boost our ability to protect and promote an international rules-based economic system whose benefits we all enjoy. we should strengthen the
strategic partnership between the european union and nato. we share 22 members. we share a positive mission of a europe, whole free and at peace but we also share difficult neighborhoods so we should work even more closely together to deal with those threats and to project stability. by bringing new members into nato and the european union, we have spread peace, prosperity and progress across this continent. we made clear in wales that we are actively supporting europe to choose their own path. we will keep nato's door open for new members. we continue to help partners to walk through that door if they so wish and if they make the
rest -- necessary reforms and no third country can have a veto. our shared vision of a europe whole, free and peace cannot be complete without the integration of the western balkans. montenegro could be an important next step. that is why our door must and will stay open. the united states and europe are partners and allies but this is not an exclusive club. we should continue to reach out to like-minded partners across the globe. a stronger global community of
democracies would help us protect and promote freedom, democracy, free trade and a rules-based world order. those are the values that forces of oppression violently opposed. by working together the world's free societies can better preserve and bolster our core values. because to preserve the rules-based global order and our way of life, the forces of freedom, cooperation and modernity must prevail over those of division, dictatorship and destruction.
third, we must strengthen our engagement in world security. stand up for our fundamental principles and values, defend the rules-based international order. for decades, the world has profited from a liberal international order. a cooperative order of the states of serving, and rules and norms, embracing freedom, market economy and democracy and renouncing territorial conquest. rules-based order that can manage the peaceful rise of new powers. a liberal international order that has facilitated global
peace, progress and prosperity. we the citizens of free societies need to show greater self-confidence in our own values and principles and way of life. of course our societies are not perfect but, freedom and opportunities for each individual have tapped resources and unleashed progress and innovation. the right to choose your own way of life stimulates creativity and energy. the freedom to pose critical questions about established truth and dogmas ensures progress, renewal and development and the right to speak against those in power
contributes to a more open society and a more efficient and transparent government. i see these values and principles now coming under pressure from forces of oppressors. forces of oppression that want to limit the liberal democracy and trample the liberal international order. recent events show only too clearly that freedom, democracy and peace cannot be take it for granted. it is for us to stand up for freedom and defend our freedom. we have to be willing and able to use both soft and hard power to protect and promote our