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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  November 12, 2015 12:00am-10:01am EST

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turkey particularly in the media and i mean really astounding cases of repression of the media as well as political opponents, particularly within the kurdish dominated h. e. p. -- hdp so this was a systematic strategy as blaise has preferred to buy erdogan of manufactured chaos, manufactured instability, violence and intimidation to essentially to scare the turkish people into revisiting the results of june 7, and returning the akp tube monopoly power because if they didn't basically it was as much a threat as a promise that things could get very -- much much worse and faced with a situation in which
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stability was the question inside of turkey, i think their only choice was to return to akp to power. they felt the majority of the voters felt that was their only option was a strong akp government. and it was a miraculous result when you think about what he did his strategy was clearly, he had to whip up some level of national hysteria and went back nationalist voters and he got them hp to back the akp. at the same time he needed to depress the hdp vote and the kurdish vote and take so many voters away and he succeeded spectacularly on both accounts. mhp loss 40 seats and i'm assuming most of them went to akp and hdp lost more than a million voters i think who were overwhelmingly kurdish voters such as think about what he did.
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one at the same time he won over millions of anti-kurdish right-wing nationalists and won over close to a million conservative kurdish boats. that's quite an extraordinary feat to be able to thread that needle, but he did it and again i think it underscores his mastery of turkish politics. what does it mean from here? i agree with my colleagues, i think it's bad news. i think the erdogan will see this as a vindication, as a mandate to continue doing what he's doing that this policy worked and that in fact whatever narrow window of opportunity exists on june 7 to begin dialing back the trajectory towards the door. -ism in turkey erdogan made sure
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over the last five months that he was going to slam it shut and my guess the next four years until the voters go to the polls again he's going to make sure it's nailed shut and democracy and her wisdom and human rights and freedom of the press my gas are all going to suffer tremendously. i think he will push this notion of an imperial presidency whether the turkish people want it or not. i think he will figure out a way to get it and if it means dominated not just 70% of the media in turkey as he does now if it requires him dominated 90% or 100% i think that's what he will do. and if he needs 13 other parliamentarians outside of the akp to be able to go to a constitutional referendum on an executive presidency i think with the political winds at his back, with all of the powers of
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the state in his command including all the coercive powers and all the incentives that the state can potentially provide to these parliamentarians, i think 13 seats is not a high hurdle or a big obstacle for him to work on over the course of next year in order to get that referendum. the peace process with the kurds , again i'm not sure but the fact is that pushing the peace process i think he will look back and say it cost me votes. it cost me both greater costs may nationalist votes. i think this election underscores how important a right-wing nationalist constituency is to his ability to consolidate power. i think that is a lesson he will take and reaching out to the kurds looking like i was pursuing a settlement hurt me. in fact over the last five months increased tensions,
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increased conflict, increased violence with the kurds, that got me november 1. that's the path to go. maybe not full-scale war. the cost of that politically economically in terms of how far investors look at turkey that could be not a place he wants to go but the thought of low-level tensions, continued simmering conflict, my guess is that is what we are likely to see, a continuation. in syria, we will see but i think this attitude on the kurdish question this increased sense of being able to play the nationalist card of seeing kurdish aspirations as a threat and even a mortal threat to turkey's territorial integrity, i think that could spill over onto the syrian front and particularly the kurdish question inside of syria. i think the fact that
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increasingly it looks like u.s. strategy is growingly dependent on the syrian kurdish y. p.j. the militia there which isn't that closely aligned with the pkk inside of turkey, the u.s. is really holding on tuesday will y. p.j. as an integral ability to fight isis on the ground including being able to put pressure on it's capital in raqqa which must be one of the main lines of our operations there. secretary carter has recently said in testimony i think that clearly and the turks have said that is a major major problem for them. even perhaps a red line, the notion of abutting u.s. ypj alliance on their border is something that they have said they cannot tolerate. up to now we have seen isolated incidents of some artillery, some airstrikes by turkey on ypj
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positions across the border but i think that's something to watch and no doubt hopefully this weekend and early next week and when the person doesn't talk to erdogan trying to reach some better understanding about where we are headed on syria is going to be very important including what they are going to do or not do with the way pg. the way pg has the tip of the spear fighting isis then what is the answer? who else is going to do it? what is turkey going to do? it's certainly not the answer that turkey has had so far which is essentially to empower the non-isis radical jihad is across the border. that's no answer for the u.s. government. that's not a serious alternative to what we are trying to do on the ground against isis and now there's this question of what skin is turkey willing to put in the game?
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subtle hints or not-so-subtle hints that they will give very serious that they have a coalition that they can work with. they don't put sonogram. are they prepared to go in and put boots on the ground in a police state sewn inside of syria? we will see you. that's a question worth pursuing but i don't think it's going to be an easy discussion and there are real potential landmines between us and the turks now over serious. i'm not at all sure that this election makes it any easier to resolve. in some ways it may make it even tougher because of where erdogan and the turkish military is on the question right now of the kurds. believe me there are -- there is no doubt a lot of turks that are fighting inside of syria with a ypj in the turks have said if there are u.s. weapons to go to sub tan that end up inside turkey being used against turkish security forces that
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will be a real diplomatic crisis between united the united states and turkey. there are a lot of things moving now that could point us in that kind of direction. i think that's something we will very much want to head off. i would finally say stepping back to the larger picture here for me is that i don't know how narrow the window was but i do think it was a window that was opened after june 7. in which turkey may have had a chance to actually begin to put the brakes on this in juggernaut of erdogan hurtling towards a more authoritarian future for turkey. i think we probably will look back in retrospect and see this election on november 1 as a real hinge point for the country where did face a chance to go and perhaps two different directions. there may have been an off ramp
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for them off of the superhighway of erdogan towards putinism with the nasty islamist twists to it. i think they thought about it. they thought about it a second time. they may have changed their mind and didn't take that exit and now it's in their rearview mirror and may have ended up in the express lane to some form of turkish putinism. and getting back to that exit from this very bad trajectory is going to be very very difficult and erdogan is going to make it very difficult if not impossible to have that kind of exit ramp and 2019. i think that will be a singular strategic purpose of his, to make sure that he doesn't have to go through the kind of experience he went through june the seventh ever, ever again.
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so on that cheery note. >> thank you. thanks to all for a substantive discussion. i refrained my comments to use the time that we have left for questions from the audience. we will start here with dan. >> daniel, m. professor here at sites. i would like to hear a little bit more about countervailing forces. you mentioned the courts but we have heard little about the military as a potential countervailing force of the business community. the opposition political party. democracy doesn't happen because people are nice to each other. there is some sort of force that works against it.
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if you could please keep answers short so we could have more questions coming. who wants to start? >> there are countervailing forces but i don't think they are powerful enough. you mentioned the military. they are a speculate about what the military is thinking. i think it's clear that erdogan wants the military on his side. and the military is an opaque institution but i think as much as we can see into it, they strongly support the idea of going after the pkk. they see the pkk is a greater threat than is isis and they see way pg -- ypj and pkk is more or
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less the same. i think they feel this way enough that maybe it's not even completely clear who was driving the policy more but i think erdogan and that military are probably more or less in lockstep on this. i think there are other issues where they can put the brakes on and they have but the brakes on but i don't think it's about domestic politics. its foreign-policy. there was a rumor about two months ago that turkey was about to send land forces into syria. it's wrongly opposed by the turkish public. every poll has shown that. according to all reports and that's all we have to go by, the military said we are not going to do it. i think the military never lost total power in turkey and i'm
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not sure. i may be in the minority on this. obviously with all the officers that were arrested, they were hurt badly. they certainly lost their ability to affect domestic politics, but they have in certain ways retain their autonomy and when it comes to the use of them they are decisive. they are not going to -- and our system the military might say mr. president this is a difficult operation. i'm not sure we can do that if the president says do it our guys will salute. i don't think in turkey the military has ever been like that even in its lowest moment. by the way the military has resisted in other ways too. the military system is still in advance. they control their own educational system. there was an effort and was
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publicly announced by the government at one point that they wanted graduates of these state-sponsored parochial schools that svante mentioned, to be eligible for acceptance into military academies. there was a big fight that they would be eligible for regular universities. the military said no. so it's not 100% to nothing but when it comes to domestic politics i don't really see. that did business community maybe doesn't like erdogan so much that they are are a lot of people this so-called anatolian tigers who are significant factor. they are very much supportive of them. >> any comments? >> i would say one -- what
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countervailing forces there are are -- if they even want to be. it's not clear if they want to be involved but if they would have wouldn't be democratically. the big businesses that allen mentioned a lot of the lead in turkey are deciding to leave to aid rather than continuing to live under the erdogan system where their liberties are going to be forsaken. among the kurds one of the stories that hasn't really been discussed is the radicalization of the kurdish youth in some of these towns where there is lots of fighting between security forces and kurdish youth. they were not members of the atk train to the congo mountains. there are local views have been radicalized by what was going on.
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again that's not a very democratic process. the one place that might be able to say that there is countervailing force emerging is the person that allen mentioned, the coleader of the sub 10 -- ypj. erdogan his frame much limited by the politics of this his party even though he aspires to be a national party. on one hand he is a danger, perceived as a danger to erdogan and now he's perceived as a danger to pkk. i think one of the things i learned when i was in turkey recently as so many people want him dead than if he were to be assassinated i would even know who to suspect. >> thank you.
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first of all i would like to commend this panel and the position of the bbc for providing such an accurate assessment about what's happening in turkey so thank you for maintaining that position. it's a juror resource. one rumor following the g20 that they might actually see immediate aftermath. i guess my question is directed to john hannah. and i wish ambassador edelman were still here. from that perspective the decision-makers in the room we are going to be dividing the presidents, it's nice that we are talking about erdogan took the brakes off and this is a dangerous regime. is anybody going to bias the president saying we shouldn't mess with these guys or who are we doing business with? erdogan has the united states
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and europe over a barrel with a lot of things. he has managed to pull a lot of levers and the plastic politics. is it the case that is going to be able to do this at the international level? is anybody going to say dan this is not acceptable? >> i think it's a good question by the way he is one of our great diplomats on turkey. ambassador homes that does a lot and i would say no, my guess is not. i think there is a sort of sobering reality that hit the obama administration about what they are dealing with in turkey which actually took a very long time for people in this town to realize. or we had to study back in 2002, 2003 to understand what we were dealing with. i think it was an awful lot of wishful thinking about where
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erdogan in the akp would take turkey and i think we are learning that now that we have developed strategies to do what we could to put backstops in support of turkish democracy and freedom of the press and the rule of law and all the things we care about. i think at the end of the day in the long-term it's vital for having a serious stable partner and a nato country. but i think allen is right at the end of the day especially now in the context that we are dealing with in the middle east today where there seems to be something of a regional melt down underway which this president has in fact launched a war against this terrorist organization and which we are getting some modicum of support now from the turkish government. i think he has manipulated that quite successfully. i have no doubt the decision to
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grant us access to those bases was very much tied and that the service of his own domestic agenda with an eye toward what he wanted to do vis-à-vis the pkk and to buy some level of u.s. acquiescence and silence. in the same way i have almost no doubt that what happened all of a sudden after several years of this conflict is a rush of people i've turkey into europe creating this kind of crisis on europe's doorstep was so used to say no accident comrade. i do believe there was some level of manipulation there that erdogan does have his hands on the tap so to speak with regard to this refugee crisis. very much understands it's using this as leverage now in his dealings with both europe and
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the united states and the west. if they want to have any hope in solving this crisis, not to mention the broader crisis in syria, is difficult to partners turkey has been the hope of getting a settlement without turkey somehow involved are slim to none and this crisis gets much worse if that requires you to lower your voice and look away if from the moment regarding basically the dismantlement of the turkish democracy and turkish rule of law, so be it. these guys are out of office another 15 months anyway and it will be somebody else's problem to deal with. for them i think they will say listen we need to do with them under these difficult regional issues and they can manage the nature of internal turkish politics. unfortunately, think it will
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come back to bite us at some point. >> turkey's strategic import has has -- importance is always covered a multitude of sin and i don't think, that's no different now. we need turkey for the war against isis. as long as we feel they are not going to change but i did want to qualify a little bit for comments that have been made that the administration has been saying anything. i think they have actually, i've been surprised to be honest with some of the strong statements if you go back and look at press briefings. they have been very tough on turkey, on freedom of expression , and also following the election, the u.s. government did not congratulate
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akp. it's very unusual in a landslide like this. we said we are waiting for the official vote which always comes out of turkey every 10 days, 10 days after the election. but we won't speculate on the result. we are the only ones in the world who wouldn't speculate on but the results were. that was a clear message that we were very unhappy about the human rights situation and the fact that the campaign had taken place under situation of great opposition. i think we have to be fair to the u.s. government. >> this has been an excellent panel. i wanted to ask ambassador edelman a question. he is gone so i will pitch this
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this -- pitch this to the whole panel. you mentioned turkey has many cleavages and if you set aside religion and recall the akp came to power on the promise of economic governance the economy is slowing. what is the long-term or near-term implications of this for erdogan and the atp? >> do we have an economist around the panel? i think for a long time other institutions have less of a turkey has the most at risk emerging economy and you have seen overlong period of time tensions within the turkish government where erdogan was more interested in populous moves in did like the independence of the central bank and wanted to lower interest
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rates. there was a resistance from the professionals, people in government like -- who is back in some capacity. we will see what happens but it seems to me the more erdogan capitalizes on this position of power that's not good news for the management of the economy and moreover right now the way the consolidation of power the crony capitalist type of economy that erdogan is building from 2010 to today is really off the rails compared to what it used to be. i don't see that changing. if anything it's likely to get worse which means the conditions for real economic downturn in turkey are certainly there. there needs to be a trigger of some form, and are internal or trigger. another election could then that trigger and i think they spread
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that propaganda which has also helped them with the election. the question is what would happen if there was an economic downturn? many people in turkey say the only way we can get rid of erdogan is find economic crisis. i don't think it would actually work that way. think would hasten the system menu but push back any very repressive way. >> hi everybody. i'm a senior fellow for the stability institute. a couple of you have touched upon this but i want to go back and look from the eyes of the voters in turkey. try to understand why they gave erdogan a majority, a resounding majority. was it off because they
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remembered the good times between the guess who was between 2003 and 2007 when things were going well. the turkish economy was growing. what was the common people the anatolian tigers i guess i could say, why would they vote for the party and propel it to the majority? >> i could start and they think there is an assumption that democracy matters to a lot of voters. it may at some point but i don't think it's necessarily the main concern. a colleague of ours spoke after the terrible mine tragedy in turkey. he noticed that the akp swept the local election. he actually went there not some 100 doors and asked people who
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they would vote for and why. they all said they would vote for the akp. he said why did you than they said look i have a mortgage on my house. i have a mortgage on my car and have a mortgage on my washing machine. it goes back to bill's question question -- it's those levels we are talking about which means people are very fearful of instability. then if you look at the studies like a recent interview by non-turkish social scientist talked about what position as a lector at? then you have what you call if you will the lower middle class. ..
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>> >> europe very much made a
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bargain they would look either way with the turkey with the democratic violations at the scene of turkey doing more to keep the refugees in turkey. and also with some social cost you have what are mostly syrians coming into the communities of southern turkey so there is a cost but it is run the europeans are willing to bear to keep turkey. >> this brings us to the end of this interesting discussion. it is important for the neighborhood of turkey as well.
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with that economic growth engine and what happens in turkey so we will be watching to discuss what happens in turkey the next couple of years to reduce the pay and asking questions [inaudible conversations]
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>> we have a justice system not held according to what
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we would be considered modern lot. not yet in place and there were no lawyers at the time. the core river is the extremely unruly place so to prosecute witchcraft. >> the interesting part of the accusations is that wealthy merchants bessie captives were accused to be witches. all the victims are female we do have five male victims so in addition there was so
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much misunderstanding that is important to dispel. posal.
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this is 40 minutes [cheers and applause] thank you very much.y righover can be and i are delighted ta to be here with the you today. please stand up so they can see you. now it's been a few years since i've been a at liberty that we talk about liberty all the time
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since that's what it represents, liberty and freedom from the snares of the world and the right kind of teaching and the right kind of values for the young paper that -- people and viewers achieve vital part of the future of the nation. but you know, i do want to acknowledge today as veterans day because i feel that we don't do enough for our veterans when you consider what they did for us. i think about world war ii, and i think about those soldiers invading the beach at normandy being molded down by machine gun fire, 100 bodies laying in the sand, a thousand bodies laying in the sun.
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with a frightened? yes. but did they turn back quickly stepped back over the bodies of the colleagues and overwhelmed the access. knowing in many cases they would never see their loved ones. why would they do such a thing? not for themselves but for you and me so that we can be free. so everybody that is a veteran can they stand up please. [applause]
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it's a sacrifice and something we begin to think about in our lives because there is nothing that is free, and particularly the concept of freedom. we should be so delighted that we live in america. is there a better place to live than america. i've been to 57 countries and some of them are beautiful places that are always delighted to get back here because there's something special about the nation that we live in. have you ever noticed that there
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is an american way, there is an american dream? there is no french dream. there is no canadian dream. [laughter] there really is only an american dream and what that means is that there is something special and something extremely unique about the nation that we live in and the values that went in to making this nation what it is and some people say there's nothing exceptional about america is just the same as everybody else. it's not true. even for hundreds of years people did things the same way. within 200 years of the advent of america men were walking on
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the moon it's most successful the nation has ever known and we are delighted to be here. i wanted to be a doctor. but the problem was i wasn't that great of a student. everybody called me tommy. that was my nickname and i believe that i didn't think i
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was very smart. and i remembered once we were having an argument in the schoolyard about who is the dumbest kid in the class. it wasn't a big argument because they all agreed it was me but then someone extended to who is the dumbest person in the world and i said wait a minute, there are billions of people in the world, and the upcoming q. are the dumbest one. but i did admire the smart kids and i couldn't even imagine how they could know so much that there was one person who didn't think that i was done and that was my mother. she always thought that there was something there. she would always say you were much too smart. and she just didn't know what to do and she prayed and asked god
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for wisdom to know what to do to get her sons to understand the importance of intellectual development. and you know what, god gave her the wisdom at least in her opinion. my brother and i didn't think it was wise at all. turning off the tv, what kind of wisdom is that taking us read two books a piece for the public library and submits to the book report which she couldn't read that we didn't know that and she would put a checkmark in highlights and undermines and people always say to me why did you do it? your mother was always working. she wouldn't have known whether you read the books or not. and back in those days you have to do what your parents told you. there was no social psychologist saying let them express themselves. [laughter]
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and as i read those books, incredible things began to happen. i began to realize particularly as i read about people of accomplishment but the person that has the most to do it is you. it's not somebody else. it's not the environment, and that was incredibly empowering to me. and i stopped listening to all the people around me who talked about what could be done. and i start thinking about what could be done and what a difference it made in my life, and fast forward to medical school i said wow i needed. i finally got their. my only dream was to be a doctor. i skipped right over firemen and
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policemen, and there was finally a medical school it was going to be great. and i was sent to see my counselor and he looked at my record and said you seem like a very intelligent young man. i bet there's a lot of things you could do outside of medicine he says he were not cut out to be a doctor. i was devastated. i went back to my apartment and i said lord i always thought you wanted me to be a doctor but it's not looking very good here. >> and i started praying for wisdom and i started thinking
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about what was happening with me and i was going to a lot of classes that i wasn't really learning anything from the classes and i thought the thing that really teaches you a lot is reading. so i'm not recommending this to anybody but maybe the executive decision to skip the lectures and spend the time reading and the rest of medical school bus easy after that and the point being that everybody learns in a different way. i personally don't learn anything from the lectures, but i learned a lot from reading. [applause]
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there are other people who learned a great deal and that's how they learn. other people from discussions, some people learn from repetition, some people are very visual. one of the other things i discovered is that it's very visual semi-made flashcards. i had literally thousands of flash cards. always had a bunch in my pocket. in my second year in medical school i was living with my brother who was in the school of engineering. he even knew all the bacteria because i would have these cards are talking about it. so you find out what works for you and that is an incredibly important part of what you do and what we do as a society because god has endowed us with these amazing brains and we are
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made in the image of god. and i get a lot of grief out there. people say how can you be a scientist and believe that god created the earth. obviously we developed from biochemicals. and people that don't know that you're a moron. i don't criticize them. i say can you tell me how something came from nothing and of course they can't. okay, no problem. i say i'm just going to give you something. and now you're going to tell me there's a big there is a big thing and it comes into perfect order so that we can predict several years when a comment is
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coming that kind of precision. and they say well yeah and i say but don't you also believe that things move towards a state of disorganization? yes. how does that work and they say we don't understand everything. while i am not sure you understand anything. [laughter] but i say i'm not going to be critical of you, not the problem because you are entitled to believe what the bbc that it requires a lot more faith than what i believe. but everybody believe what you want to believe. isn't that part of the problem in the society today? people want to force their beliefs on everybody else.
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i tv that the constitution gives everybody the same rights but it doesn't give anybody extra rights and that's where the problem comes in. [applause] and if we can begin to understand that the ideas we can make real progress because that would mean that people whether they believe the same or not could actually sit down and engage in the conversation and put the reasons that the belief on the table because when you you live in a pluralistic society it is absolutely crucial that we are now to do that and it's also very vital that we
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begin to think about each other and begin to think about those who come behind us. when i look out there and i see all these young people and i think back to thomas jefferson who said that it is immoral to pass the data onto the next generation, and when i think about what my generation is passing on to you guys if you can bring thomas jefferson here today to let him see what's going on, he would immediately strike out. he wouldn't be able to believe the kind of death that we are moving with. 18 plus trillion dollars of national debt backs to beat coke. think about that if you try to pay that off with $10 million a day it would take you over 5,000 years and we are putting that on your back. but that's the good news because
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it's actually much worse than that. the gap, the fiscal gap which is the enough of money the government does going forward with medicare, medicaid, social security, all the government agencies and programs we owe them for data versus the taxes and other revenue sources of course those numbers would be identical because you are not responsible to bringing it up to today's dollars if it's over $200 trillion. we can sustain that level of debt is because we can print money where there is a currency of the world. a position that generally goes with the number one economy which we have been in since the
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1870s and we've been in competition with china but we still have the title. with china like to be the reserve currency, would you like to be able to print money we bet they would with the international investment bank. we have a little time to get our house in order. that's not a lot of time because the financial situation is very precarious. what happened on wall wall street would be a walk in the park compared to what will happen. fiscal responsibility is our duty and we can fix these kinds of things. it is possible to get our economy rolling again. we have the most powerful economic engine the world has
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ever known in this country. nothing anywhere close to it. we declared independence in 1766 in less and less than 100 years but the number one economic power. because we have the right kind of atmosphere that encouraged innovation and entrepreneurial risk-taking and capital investment and all the things that fuel the rapid rise. they will fuel a rapid recovery if we are willing to look at them and stop doing silly stuff. you think of -- [applause] you think of an employer mandate that here's the situation where
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people used to be so proud when they started the business. that was the very backbone. we put something in there to stop the small business from growing and then we wonder why jobs aren't coming. and that's why this is so important for people to actually understand what's going on in this country if you listen to the news last week use a lot of people rejoicing that the unemployment rate is down to 5%. but if you know anything about economics you know that you can
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make that money anything you want it to be based on who you include and how you exclude and that the numbers the labor force number is the labor force but a sufficient rate which is at its lowest level since 38 years and that's why the founders of the nation said that our freedom and our system is based upon a well-informed and educated populace and if they ever become anything other than that, the nature of the country will change. the people will not inform the other was politicians. and they go off in the completely wrong direction listening to all kinds of propaganda and inculcating that into their methods of thinking
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independent becomes easy for them to swallow things. they don't really understand the financial situation of the country and somebody comes along and says free college for everybody. what a wonderful person. and they have no idea that it's the distraction of the nation. [applause] i could talk about the economy for a long time. but let me just say before we start the q-and-a, this nation is an incredibly special place because when you look at the founding document the declaration of independence, it talks about a certain
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inalienable rights given to us by our creator also known as god. [applause] and anything that's rare for some kind of an idiot. the nations survival is the pinnacle nation in the world i believe is rooted in our value systems, values and principles that made us into a great nation
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and the question is are we going to stand up for the values and principles or will we allow ourselves to be intimidated by the secular progressives. they don't care whether you agree with them or not as long as you sit down and keep your mouth shut. and i think that the secret to the prosperity of this nation is we must be willing to stand up for what we believe in. thank you. [applause]
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if you would submit a few questions and just grateful for you giving us the time. the moral ground in this country has been shifting dramatically in the last few years. none more via standard issues like marriage. what about where tradition holds values like marriage seem to be the minority. you can use the bully both very effective ways to once again level the playing field. you know, the first amendment is incredibly important. it talks about freedom of religion, not freedom from religion that freedom of
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religion, and we have got to encourage all the branches of the government to work effectively with checks and balances. what we have seen recently is the legislative branch which is the branch that represents the people as more or less acting like the peanut gallery which means that the executive branch and the judicial branch are overstepping their boundaries and we are going to have to have a president who's willing to work with the legislative branch to put things back. we need legislation to protect the religious freedoms of people who believe that marriage is between one man and one woman. [applause]
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you've proposed the idea of a flat tax eveu've proposed the ia flat tax even likening it to tithing as refers to proportional giving. could you elaborate a little bit more about the flat tax? >> the reason i liken it to tithing is i believe god is the fairest individual and if he thought it was fair i think it must be pretty fair. basically you make $10 billion, you pay a billion. you make $10 you pay one and get the same rights and privileges, hard to be more fair than that and get rid of all the deductions and all the loopholes everybody has been proportionate now. my proposal takes into consideration poverty and at the poverty level you get a rebate but we don't change the system
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because the minute you change a system and allow just one crack at it everybody starts moving towards that crack and then every geek pretty soon you have another and wind up with a 7500 page tax code and that's what we don't want. some people say that it's not fair because the guy that's putting a billion still got 9 billion left. we need to take more of his money. that's called socialism. [applause] and then the guy that guy that's putting 1 dollar only had ten some people say that's not fair because he can't afford to put in a dollar. of course he can't afford to put put in a dollar. he can afford to drive on public roads and sent his kids to public school and i can tell you having come from the bottom percentile, i can tell you that people down there also have have
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pride and they want to carry their own weight. they don't want somebody patting them on the head. [applause] and then the people see the mortgage to action would have so much more money in their pocket they would be easily a particular mortgage and some say there would be charitable deductions and it will dry out. what they don't realize is there are lots of churches in america before 1913 when the federal income tax went in place and those people have more money in their pockets, they will actually put more money in when the tide comes by. [applause] >> this is one of the main things the students wanted to know and it's interesting that you asked the lord for wisdom and you were saying that in your time with us a few minutes ago obviously a lot of students believe you have a lot of wisdom
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to dispense. students want to know if you could get a college student one piece of advice if you could go back to when you were in college and you could go back and say i wish somebody had come in front of me and had undressed me or said this one piece of wisdom to me, what advice would you give? my advice would be proverbs three, five and six. it says trusting the trust in the lord with all your heart, lead both to your own understanding in all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path. [applause] i have clung to that for all kinds of adversity in my life.
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i cling to it now. many want to bring me down because i represent something that they can't stand. but the fact of the matter is romans chapter eight if god is before you can be against you. [applause] if it's a nobel peace prize winner that comes our way it's always the same question. how can we specifically be praying for you and i want you to know it's not just a cliché spiritual thing we say out loud.
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our students really do commit to pray for you and your family. we know this is an incredibly busy time and so how can we be specifically praying for you when we see you on tv and think there is the carson family and the team. why did i get involved in the world of politics? people say the successful -- why did you get involved in politics and i ask myself that, too. but when i got the call to be the keynote speaker. i said what are you up to.
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i kept writing things down and i said no that's not it. right up until five for the prayer breakfast when i awakened that morning it was so clear i was supposed to say. and obviously resonated with millions of people and then people started clamoring for me to run for president which i thought was pretty absurd. and i said why would i even be thinking about something like that i'm going to retire and relax with my wife and have fun. but, i said just ignore this chatter out there that will tie down. but it didn't die down. it kept building and building.
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and all the political professionals with the carson ran for president, are you kidding me, that's ridiculous. he's not connected to any of the money. he doesn't know anything. he's never been elected to public office. it's impossible. don't even think about it. and i said i'm glad to hear that but it kept going. and i finally said you know this was not on my bucket list but if you truly want me to do this, old bins say it's impossible but nothing is impossible for use with you open the door i will walk through them. [applause]
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and he began opening the doors and we were able to put together an incredible team including one is yours alone, dean parker. and in terms of the money they said that's impossible. can't raise that much money. well, interestingly enough, we now have over 900,000 donations from average americans which they never anticipated that we, the people to fund the campaign. they always thought they had to be the billionaires and special interest groups. but the way that it was actually designed is that it should be be the people coming into this designed for citizens, statesman and not career politicians trade and itv that people are beginning to understand that. [applause]
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so i am hopeful that the people will pray for courage, stamina, protection for me and my family and for the eyes of the nation to be open to what's going on because the problems that we have in this nation are not republican problems were democrat problems. they are problems that affect all of us and we have to recognize that one of the goals of those that want to fundamentally change the nation is to pull the nation apart. and they've created the perceptions that there is a war on women that every time there
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is any conflict between people with two races there is a race for. but there's income or the age for, religious war that the democrats hit republicans republicans, the republicans hate democrats and you keep people at each other's throats. and then we forget what's truly important. what's truly important is our unity. and we have a lot more that unites us than the things that divide us and we must remember this is the united states of america. [applause] >> my wife and i got to be at the prayer breakfast this morning. you are leading were leading
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worship at that breakfast and i remember the one thing that everyone at our table continued to agree upon was that you were a man of courage speaking some hard truth even if people in the room that don't necessarily agree with you with the president sitting right next to you at the same time there seemed to be more of a spirit of unity and really the one thing i think we all really about eight about you is your humility and the way you carry yourself so thank you for that. let's all just stand together and pray for doctor carson and his wife and his team and his family. father, thank you lord for a man who understands that leadership begins at the feet of jesus. thank you, father, for this person that you've called out
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for such a time as this to be a voice of reason. we pray for stamina for him and his family we pray for margin this season and for courage. we thank you for all of those things bring the very things he wants to see in this country. they bring unity. thank you that we are the united states of america and even though we might not agree on secondary issues that we can come together and recognize the nation if you've been called to do together what we could never do alone and we do look for a leader. if this is the leader that he was called for us we pray that it would be clear to people and we pray against in the pray against confusion and division and we pray that they would be crystal clarity on how to serve your kingdom% of the great citizens of the nation, whoever
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that leader is. i think you for the team that you've assembled to meet with doctor carson and we pray for them and give them wisdom and discernment. it's a very busy season. allow him to also be a witness and testimony with the very peers he has running alongside of him. we are grateful for this time that you have given us. we sit under your authority and we pray this in your name. amen. can we put our hands together for doctor carson? [applause] >> there will
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>> all persons having business in front of the supreme court give their attention. >> tonight to our country faces a grave danger. with a first possibility first directing the secretary of commerce to take possession and to keep them operating. >> in 1952 the beded states was involved with north korea in a conflict in the steel union had come to a head. >> korean war was hot they needed tanks and jeeps munitions. all those from the second world war i as well.
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that was going to be a real problem is tonight to a boy a disruption crucial to the military president truman seized control and as a result of a pending strike was called off in steel production and continued all the fuel companies disagreed with the action into the lawsuit all the way to the supreme court for the we will examine how the with dash with the impact on presidential power. author of the forgotten president's and also for the diversity of chicago called the wartime president.
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coming up on the next landmark cases monday at 10:00 p.m. eastern. for background and each case order your copy of the companion book available $8.95 plus shipping at c-span.org d 20 minutes. >> thanks everybody for coming out on this veterans day 2015. welcome to atlantic bottling company. i'm president of atlantic bottling company honored to host everybody here. we are a small family owned company starting to get the business down. we've been in the business for about 106 years now.
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it's a lot of fun. we are glad to be in atlantic. it's my pleasure to introduce a couple veterans today and and play with the premise that i didn't recognize my father a pilot in world war ii. [applause] and it's also my honor to welcome the middle of one of their is going to introduce governor bush. so thank you. >> he is a minnesota farm kid and then a year in the course and i went to jail. six year as a prisoner of war and later came home got involved in politics and ran against george mcgovern for the senate and campaign harder than anybody else for me was bush number one
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could he was the chairman of the time and was very gracious. when asked if i would support and i said that i will because there is a loyalty but also he's so close we lived in saint augustine florida. how was governor bush when you were here it goes from he's pretty good to use the best one you've ever had is that he has a record of fixing things and doing things. his father was a fighter pilot and he is evidence of his more more and for the more veteran basis, 33 i think it is and he's the only governor i know of that anytime a person was killed in the current war he would personally contact the family. i'm proud to be here supporting him. [applause]
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thank you, colonel. he said he believes and nepotism. [laughter] this is a great backdrop for the townhall meeting i appreciate you coming out on a national holiday first and foremost i want to ask all of us to show our appreciation not just for mr. tyler and the kernel the medal of honor recipient, pretty phenomenal but for all the veterans are here today i think we need to give them a round of applause. [applause] i appreciate all of you. i'm running for president because i believe contrary to some that we are on the verge of greatness again. in fact i think in america today there are two competing sets of
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pessimism. one on the left suggests that we need to manage the liabilities and get in line and accept the fact we can't grow the economy at a rate any more than we used to release to accept the fact month you were going to live in poverty. life isn't fair. we have to accept the fact the declining income for the middle class and on our side we have a similar pessimism that the end is near and i think for our country to succeed and for the party to win when we have to offer a compelling alternative which suggests is a vision of how we could improve things and fix our tax code and shift power away from washington and fix the mindnumbing regulations that make it harder and harder for people to rise up, recognize we are all getting older together and our demography is changing because of it. that's a blessing but the fact
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is we have to change the social contract to preserve and protect for those who have it now and assure that it exists going forward. all of these require leadership, the kind of leadership i got to show when i was governor and the state in florida. of florida. i believe we are on the verge of greatness but it's time to start fixing problems and covers the message i try to get last night in that debate and that's the message i wake up each and every day thinking about. it's possible that we fix these things it's not the most difficult thing our country has gone through and 56 washington, d.c.. i believe we should have a balanced budget amendment to force the conversation of government living within its means. please clap. [applause] i think we need to make sure that when elected officials finished their service they don't bother back and start
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walking. there should be a six-year ban. there should be full to school sure it's not that they do bad things but because people don't see it because there's no transparency they think the worst and they don't have confidence in elected officials are serving they think that they are the masters and in many cases sadly that's the case. i think that people when they show up off to work. i don't understand why that is such a complex thing. [applause] we had an interview today with a detroit talk show host and he said why the heck did you not be considered for the nfl job cuts what they think is the best in the world and i said i loved being considered for this is the third -- it was my eighth year on the job but i have nine more months to go. it didn't even cross my mind i would leave early. i put my hand on the bible when i was governor in the state of florida to uphold the law and the anatomy that meant to me that it was from the beginning to the end.
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i had a countdown clock. ever see one of those clicks it starts backwards by seconds. anytime i watch for the officer walked through the officer was like i better get going so the last four years of my time from the beginning all the way back to zero dot 12:00 on the first tuesday in january of 2007 it always reminded me that this was about service. people in government should serve rather than dictate and so i did each and every day and it was the greatest experience of my life and to remind you you can move the needle. it's a sign of strength not weakness to be able to serve people. i just published a book called reply all and it's a book about my e-mails and i described my service through the e-mails. people who don't let me have it. some people were not too happy about the governor but i gave up
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my e-mail out my e-mail address and probably have half a million e-mails between receiving and giving. e-mails like a lady that sent me an e-mail from delray beach she said they have a raccoon in my attic were you going to do about it. [laughter] i didn't know that was the job description of the governors of the next morning i called up the city manager of the town and i sent mrs. jones, whatever her name was on just sent send me an e-mail. she said she has a raccoon in raccoon interact. what are you going to do about it. and by noon, the raccoon was out. [laughter] but on a serious note i also learned there is a lot of hardship going on. i will never forget an e-mail i got from a woman that was upset that the child support arrangements but the court had made for her to receive support for her child because her former husband had left the very first month he was supposed to pay you to do it and i got another one and another one and another one and the result was i created
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inside the department of revenue a service if you will. a woman whose job it was to fight to make sure children got the support that they deserved and then i realized the whole system didn't work and the net result was we apply technology and change how changed how we went about things and changed the law and increased child support payments by 90%. that is my servant does. they may say i'm the big dog in the room just to get out of the way i will talk you into talk but i think you have to first listened to people and then learn from their challenges and when you learn from their challenges, you apply the things that you know how to do to fix things and i do not that related to education in the child welfare across the board. florida is better off. don't you want a president with a servants heart pics veterans administration? [applause] think about it.
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this is an organization of 330,000 employees. it's the largest healthcare system in the world. a bonus management. thousands of people about bonuses for taking people off waiting lists. the assumption was by getting off the waiting list is meant that they got care. the simple fact was they got off the waiting list and they didn't get care and better inside. and millions of dollars went out in the form of bonuses. up until now. three people have been fired. should i be a president i can promise you this. you fiercely support veterans that are supportive of a far better set of services than they
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are getting now. you challenge the orthodoxy inside an organization that is protecting their own interests. you make sure that you fight as hard as you can and you can change things i promised you. no promise you. no more building apostles in the va system that started out as 300 million not as $1.9 billion without the appropriations to finish the building. it was the right to choose. if they want to see his or her private doctor why shouldn't they have that right? i talked to veterans all across the country, and sometimes it works. it's so convoluted only in washington does it create all these big readers that cost a lot more and make it harder to get the care that they've earned through service to country. one of the ways we can provide support for the veterans right away is to not degrade the
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military anymore. we are not funding the government and the training and the ability to keep them safe. we need the greatest force fighting down to man. if you want to keep the peace and make sure you don't go to war to make then make sure you have military superiority in today is that risk. i pledge to you that i will fix that. [applause] we need a foreign-policy that suggests our friends should know we have their backs at around the world the united states has pulled back. our enemies no longer fear us
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and the net result is that we have an uncertain world. could you have ever imagined a caliphate? i didn't know what the term meant literally a year ago. a caliphate the size of indiana garnering energy each and every day because of our inaction. recruiting americans to go fight their fight in the caliphate that is in iraq also recruiting americans to do harm to us here. thousands and thousands of internet exchanges trying to recruit people that had a have a delusional view of the great country of ours. if we are serious about creating growth for people to be looked at in the middle class to get away for the first time we also have to recognize that we need a secure road and safe world. american leadership is not a force for bad things have been. american leadership done the right way creates peace and security into the next president is going to have to rebuild the alliances that have been
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tattered at the seams. name a country where the relationship is better today than the day that barack obama was sworn into office. as usual, iowa shows once again they have lots of confirming voters. cuba and iran effectively. ..
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>> >> and allow the $2 trillion of cash to come back to our country that will create hundreds of thousands of jobs in this country that we see rising and tom. it is possible to do this. there is the ability to forge consensus across party lines that benefits everybody. and jonathan love to is serving they told us if they
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get the tax cut the combined income totals x amount in receive a $2,300 tax break. the middle class on average received it thousand dollars. that doesn't sound like much for the big thinkers of washington d.c. you can do a lot. you can provide bills you would do what you want to do but doo-doos your decision to use the term reagan loved. i love this. they would set up a business there are more businesses closing than starting. in a never before fact that it exists but to simplify the code where washington is not the place where you get your special deal to higher a lobbyist to simplify the
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code people set up businesses to restore the entrepreneurial spirit. i know we can do this because i did in florida leading the nation in job growth seven out of 80 years to cut taxes very major to take on the special interest holding people back. 1.3 million jobs were created during those eight years. disposable income away debris $1,300 but hillary clinton gives that the letter and a. she said that openly. he deserves an a for the economic policy. really?
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one out of five children is on food stamps in this country today. businesses are closing at a faster rate than they are starting. that may we is the best she can do she is greeted of the curve but that it is an effort. -- is an f. rather than thinking it is a horrible thing to lower energy cost to have lower utility bills betted washington did is it deep disappointment high sustained economic growth requires leadership and a totally different approach to make things happen. those that it with -- the things you're the most
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extraordinary country on the face of europe because you're think back bader history on this veterans day. the sacrifice our families have made in the greatest generation and what they did to protect our freedoms with the era of abundance. that's america. in this country needs leaders across the board that love this country with their heart and soul and fight to restore the things that will allow everybody to believe in the american dream and just with the spirit and the joy in the energy to draw people toward the cause. i know for sure america is not that again in line type of country do we were told touched a country get mine in real take care of your type of country we do extraordinary things and you're free to decide how we want to pursue our own dreams.
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leading our allies -- the bigger lives of purpose to inspire others mir the bottom up country that is a little chaotic from time to time. we don't like to get in line. i want to restore that america. that has a spirit and a dynamic belief will be brighter than what we have today. if you believe that is the america we can recreate that i hope you'll join my cause. a whole you are involved in the caucus is. i hear it is a beautiful time to go out at night on figure refers. [laughter] i promise i will not let you down. thank you very much. [applause]
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>> the country is where it is when you take office. we are where we are. with syria, iran, issues with illegals that we actually have to make a plan for. how do do this by yourself hoodie bring in to get this accomplished? >> whenever we have i looked at it as an opportunity because if you start with the promise -- with the promise it is hard to imagine how you fix it. looking at secretary clinton
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when she was asked who her enemies are like all my fantasy the ball team is doing, she said the nra was an enemy then she said i guess the republicans are really my enemy. half of the country. have you solve problems of that type of mentality? person foremost don't assume people disagree have bad motives they might just be wrong if you have to persuade them but you do that respectfully and civility. that is not a sign of weakness. great things happen when you restore trust. the president needs to lead to change the culture in washington focusing on solutions rather a been pushing people down. i am so sick and tired of hearing about how great our
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president is and how stupid the people that disagree with him are. that they are in cahoots with death to america crowd. that type of culture of both sides has to stop. second common men and women that have talent and life experience, diversity because that is important. my experience as governor we have a diverse set of principles with great background. ben and women of different backgrounds you have a better answer to a challenge with different views and perspectives for crowhop where political hacks and academics put people that have a subject matter expertise and then tell them
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the strategy and the vision to give them the power to have their back there is a problem then it is somebody else's fault office of personnel management is packed their of the dog ate my homework nobody except responsibility lois lerner does herself with the irs nobody still has said that is wrong. my dad i will fix that. we have problems i was governor of california -- florida a child is lost it was heartbreaking my first impulse was on to say that is the investigative workers problem but to say when a child is lost it is my responsibility i am governor. i did not personally lose this child is under my watch so we major that never happened again.
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is a much broader question the other thing i would say is you are president you are in the white house it is a pretty good to live you want to bring people together so the story i tell is of republican senator invited by the white house to have dinner with the president said he goes up the elevator to the second floor and that aid says senator you are the first republican he has had dinner with in the residence since he has had present when dash and he's been president of this is the fifth year. think about that first woman president congratulations and you try to get something done you don't thank you could convince that person
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how do we forge consensus? what can i do to make it easier in the lincoln memorial the washington monument you're in this incredible place you don't think people of goodwill could find common ground? to do for years this country has been an existence we have had dysfunction than? with get back to where it worked. we were designed to be efficient or orderly but there was always a belief you could forge consensus. first and foremost,.
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>> i have to question. >> make it a two-part one question. [laughter] >> social security is always a dip into and health care for the country i believe everybody should have insurance moneys to be gone about a different way. it's been a great questions. those are two questions. if you're interested in the full details jab 2016 is the place to go. we have comprehensive plans i am a policy wonk or a murderer but even the power of ideas you have to be courageous to express your views to defend them even if they are controversial and the subjects are controversial remember paul ryan proposing medicare reform he had some real
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looked like him pushing gramm off the cliff? but to your point is already bankrupt we have already borrowed the money. it will be a bankrupt in every way in short order and when that happens it will be double digits for everybody so doing nothing which is the proposal will create major cutbacks i have laid out a reform we raise the retirement age to 70 in the early at 65 then to get progressively one month for every year just as ronald reagan did with tip o'neill but if we raise that benefit level for social security
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beneficiaries then right now the minimum benefit level so we create a safety net that is higher for everybody then suppress the benefits for those others than changing the calculation on the beginning benefits for those in the next generation that will make social security solvent. >> a lot of people today are over the retirement age and working. people like to work to keep them active and a lot of people have to work. they have to. the plan i have suggested says if you are about the retirement age you are
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working you have to pay the employee portion of the payroll tax which is 6% so instead of continuing to pay into the trust fund that is a group you keep in your own pocket social security was never designed is the system it was supplemental which means we need to get back to private savings as part of this as well. i was in new hampshire last week the gentleman asked about social security he was about 86 or 87 and the sweetest guy in the world and i said when did you retire? he said i don't remember. that about three a month -- three minutes later he said i remember now. 62. [laughter] then he describes something that is important i was a
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bad boy witches say regional high the supermarket chain. they had had great 401k he worked there 13 or 40 more years of we need to provide incentives for private savings as well if you ask a small-business person to set up the 401k you have to hire a lawyer and accountant allow secure committing a crime. you cannot prove that they're together so the cost is extraordinary if you are a small business that wants to provide assistance to you cannot afford that contribution than why not provide direct support to those who are working for you? but they could give you a savings of for that is tax deductible obamacare is a
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job killer and it is way too complicated giving way to much power to washington d.c. other than that it is great. [laughter] the pre-existing condition could be restored a loving human adults to be under a plan was popular but otherwise it should be you replace with no premium mandates catastrophic coverage where the states decide the editions my plan would save for obamacare subsidies there would be brought back in a defined contribution type of way because of inflation not the growth that we're having now
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so the federal government would save hundreds of billions of dollars to allow states to have low-cost alternatives with the focus on catastrophic coverage it is the unlikely event it is not going to your monthly doctor visit or dentist that is prepay to interact with your hair up health care professional insurance needs to be insurance and consumer is being more engaged allowing for health savings accounts with the insurance to make healthy lifestyle decisions the premium dollars you save go into an account to be saved when you do get sick.
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because the new economy may be shared you would be surprised to is driving these days they could have three jobs totally customized the insurance system is not designed for them and technology should be a cost drive down not up drugs and medical devices across the board in most places without government involvement think of all the things we have that now cost one-tenth of that with a better quality technology harnessed the right way rollout was to live healthier with wireless technology to tell us when the blood sugar is too high
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or the means by which would never the problem is is that the queue to level to send a text message to your doctor or nurse or a spouse but the government makes them harder for that to be harnessed in a way to create dramatic improvement of health care outcomes. >> isf this generation far murkier in cass county. i visited before regarding trade with china. in 2005 congress created the birth of the ethanol industry which is rfs and the weak dollar meant good strong trade with china. iowa is agriculture and the
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number one corn soybean states would is critically important to counties and communities and the economy we continue things on a good strong course. whole industry has responded the last 10 years to that demand fell whole infrastructure is built upon that demand whether land value or equipment or land rentals or business is expanding in tallis like atlantic and now we are very worried because the rfs is under scrutiny in under criticism and with the strong dollar our trade is diminishing and we have been hit on both fronts in the whole infrastructure is built into this to rand. i of this generation could
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weather a few storms but my son is a sixth generation. >> he is bigger than you by the way. [laughter] >> adoptive for about three minutes. he is a pretty a good kid he actually shaved after harvest this morning. what is george vice to him? he is on the cusp of investing in agriculture he just joined the business so when assured vice envision for iowa agriculture because that affects almost everyone in this river other business or racial restorer downtown iowa is agriculture. >> i appreciate the comment and question.
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>> vs hopi support me that is my first advice with corn or soybeans is seeded number one and number two in a united states if prices are up we are third if they are down right now we're second. that is the scale of florida agriculture and i dealt with their risk-taking elements with the hurricanes and tropical storms that greening issue that is wiping out the citrus industry and i think i have an appreciation for the business side is in the heritage cited is a way to protect your culture i know this because i saw firsthand as governor. second to one way to sustain any sector but in particular is ready -- agriculture change the regulatory system
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able in search of a problem brinkley there is no problem. this is a rule decided never probably have a huge impact on your business but it defines the federal government's involvement of any federal bader body they could read their drainage ditch that it was never intended. those kinds of rules whether department of labour or epa or the clean power act will have a devastating effect on anybody that needs to produce power we need to be peeled or revamp and shift those back to communities that understand old or agriculture or manufacturing washington is not designed
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to do this so re-elect someone that has the skills to dramatically change how we create rules around society go to jeb 26t the proposals on regulation of the most comprehensive and complex that they think would of these the animal spirit of our country but third you need a president that fights for free trade and fair trade for sure but this on the debate states that somehow we will battle the physical walls but protectionist walls you know, the first group to get hurt is agriculture that is the easiest thing to counter. one month ago governor branstad told the dutch ideas had come to the country in an incredible way
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to save their by the equivalent of one year's production of soybeans in iowa. that we will have that volume in a 15% premium over the price of one month ago is extraordinary. despite the currency flows as they grow into the middle class will be a market that will create enormous opportunities so you need a president that tears down the barrier to fight for sure to make sure the trade agreements are enforced but not in a way that jeopardize is the economy the very first part of what you said is the part that i am sympathetic with that rules
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were established that created billions of dollars of investment and it takes time for that to be fully amortized. a long way the elevators have or the cost but ultimately we have a sugar industry in florida is a huge i never believed in the sugar subsidy per quart of believe it is appropriate to pick winners and losers me to have food security for sure with a minimum commitment but picking winners and losers by protecting one group because they have more clout is not the way america works so ultimately the subsidies are
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versions of protections that should be phased out with the recognition you have made commitments as relates to millions of dollars with market access just as it has gone up over the state you can get to the point that ethanol can be competitive as long issue have market access. i do believe these things have to be phased out over a period of time. >>. >> to stop something happening like in a denver hospital? >> congress came up with a good idea. just to think this is america how can this happen?
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this is what you expect in argentina. not our country. the solution the best solution is what the army corps of engineers to the construction to get the veterans administration act of the business you clearly don't know what they're doing. with a procurement reform information technology reform to have the army corps to have the subject expertise to give veterans choices to give them a card to broadened powers to see their own doctors and focus on centers of excellence because given the challenges that exist a generation has a different challenge there are two big challenges one is that there are women veterans.
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and ptsd that is a lot of challenges and the long-term disabled but then have centers of excellence to allow veterans to have more choices you kill lower cost to really improve outcome. >> on immigration if you advocated with other candidates you have to learn and -- english for pay a fine that is a general statement nobody goes into details. how much money do we talk about?
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who pays for these people to learn english? what happens if there is the time limit? >> if i actually wrote a book about this called the immigration and wars. you to probably get at $1.99 on amazon. [laughter] it is not a best seller sold even at that. we detail a full plan to pay a fine something that needs to be collected in the hundreds, not thousands of dollars. most immigrants want to learn english to a band's themselves. they would pay for it. not commit crimes is a deportable offense. and to pay taxes no federal government assistance.
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over the extended period of time you earn legal status l.i. she to stay in the country but not gain citizenship with the pragmatic approach if we do nothing we perpetuate it he could have done in the first and second year and nancy pelosi was speaker to use it as a political issue in our guys are reluctant because he cannot be trusted on border security so now the
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courts have held that it is constitutional and the law allows the president to have discretion which doesn't allow to say it doesn't come close to that so the courts will overrule him but we need to you get to the point where we solve this problem to make it a positive right now would is a drain on the resources we could create an economic strategy saudia arabia's of doing nothing and of think that works is just as a practical you will violate civil liberties it overwhelms the accords is sounds good on one level.
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but i've been the problem solving business i am not talking about how bad things are but i say let's fix these complex things and get on with life. right now we're totally stuck as a nation and i think i can fix it. thanks for the question and for being here. [applause]
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[inaudible conversations] >> ladies and gentlemen,. welcome to johns hopkins school for advanced
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international studies. we are here today to discuss the great - - a joint project of the policy center as turkey transformed a the origins and the is solmization of the akp party. publishing this report shortly before the november 1st election and it is available on-line. the studies are available on-line there also copies outside her gore want to mention the institute has been publishing also another
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statement said is dedicated to environmental issues but i will start with the brief introduction by saying there is no need to talk to mention of bay critical region between central asia and the maturity and. it is important for political and other prospective so it is important of what is happening for turkey itself and also for its neighbors and the united states having interests in that area as
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well. we all know the results of the election the president regained parliamentary majority and the results even surprised a seasoned analyst. and the akp is mandated to govern. in favor of stability after the elections it is the oldest on the meeting of the election and what it means for actors all around. we have a distinguished panel of our first speaker
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is ideally suited because he holds positions at the policy center. and a distinguished scholar for studies. as well as state undersecretary of defense for 2005 and 2009. one is for the institute. and holds his b.a. degree from university. there is director for foreign policy at the bipartisan policy center. we are fortunate to have to
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commentators who are members of the bipartisan policy center task force. a long time turkey observer finally the last but not least senior counsel also the state department of national security advisor to vice president cheney. >> thank-you and let me say at the outset i have to leave a little bit after 6:00. because i have another commitment but i would feel
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worse about that if not for the fact i am sitting on a panel with a group of people with whom i have worked on with this for many years. i know the audience will be well served or better served in my absence. monday star with a couple of comments of the report that caused us to write the report and then make a few comments about turkey's prospects post-election. a couple of years ago we did a report that looked at the ideological origins of turkish foreign policy and this is in the context of a form policy that had begun
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to enter the prime minister to have no problems and that policy over time had more to into a policy where turkey seem to have problems with all the neighbors and has developed a form policy that was marked by the allegiances of the neighboring region and the initial in junction of problems with neighbors and to prepare that report it occurred to several of us it might be useful to look into the ideological origins of what appears to be driving a greater trent toward authoritarian behavior of
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the akp in turkey because because of turkish and foreign policy behavior could not be explained without reference domestically in turkish society so we undertook to write this report it is quite to eliminating a week ago before the election with some of distinguished commentators who i think both agree this as a lot to tell people including those who know a lot about turkey
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what we see of the current political circumstance the changes we see going on in the media and in education policy. the paper serves as a useful backdrop to the election and as was mentioned a minute ago i don't think very many observers saw this coming between the june election in the november election to gain about 5 million votes. it went to 40% of the share to about 49 .4%. turkey has a tradition of free and fair elections and it is hard to imagine although there were some
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votes it was more significant than usual is hard to imagine 5 million votes were stolen but that being said it is hard to characterize this election as spare. because of the atmosphere of violence and intimidation under which the election campaign took place. i have in mind to the burning of over 200 offices of the kurdish party and the demonstrations by those thuggish elements from the mainstream media outlets and days before the election the
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media offices use of tear gas. is hard the the environment that a fair election can take place. not to mention that high a level of violence from what we would see in the 1980's that makes it very difficult to imagine a fair election being held in the southeast. where a large number reside. is in light of that where to find ourselves facing? although this victory was not perceived by others there must have been 30-year 40 polls taken between june and in november and not one predicted this outcome. the highest of any poll was 47% that was an allied air among the poll's. it tells you even without
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large victory the prime minister and the president had received 49 percent of the vote and that indicates turkey is a deeply divided society. and what that requires to roof turkey for word to be the society of that democratic pluralistic partner that we need to be in vendee of the spirit of reconciliation of differences with the emphasis of peaceful reconciliation and a concern for pluralism and tolerance rather than the overheated rhetoric over the last
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couple of years. that is what the prime minister by qc but i am fearful that is not the result very likely to see. those papers to which i have referred have been won the election and his opponents lost he could govern in any way he sees fit. edits likely to carry turkey further of greater polarization or perhaps worse unless the trend is arrested.
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i'm afraid it is hard to see him approaching this in any other way. that makes it incumbent to make clear publicly and privately to attach freedom of expression to the rule of law for a fair regard of turkish opinions to be a guiding force of the turkish government's policies rather than the efforts to eliminate criticism and paints opponents with a broad brush as supporters of terrorists and that is what i hope to see all though i
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am not sanguine about that either. >> the queue ambassador for your comments i take the starting point than the of retrospect that the akp stood for when they came out on the political scene. of course, that had broken from the islamist movement and embraced membership in the e.u. and democracy and promised to break the system that existed in turkey to produce a true liberal democracy. in the post of 11 period what could be better than
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what the akp promised to be? and did what they have developed is the new turkey project with the western observers or the liberals believe in maybe entering for this election period with the capital of the city to shoot water cannons to hindering the first responders from coming to the scene. so space the with the new turnkey project is go into some detail chronological
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the to deepen the authoritarianism in the process of exhilarated islam as asian. my colleagues will speak of the authoritarian elements but and it is a fair point. is not that level of authoritarian as of but that old system isn't on the individual persons but it was rather predictable into a considerable degree you can disagree with those laws and most did but it was in
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china with the national security council and everything that existed but now a is a different type of system centered around one individual. that makes it much more unstable because even with 317 seats in the parliament he is not the position to achieve the system he has said is defacto to change the constitution and to reflect. he is governing in a way that is completely different from the one turkey is mandating. so the institution was asian -- institutional was asian but with that is solmization that most secularists are
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calling but that did not seem to have been but after the 2011 elections we see clear change acceleration of the process. there has ben a massive reversal of the secular reforms of the system in the late 90's with a great assertion into the regular school system but with the rebuilding of a school run under the supervision of the foundation. and in this process we see the transformation of regular schools against the wishes of the people and greasy and education system that pushes people into the
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system from the regular school system in turkey. the second element is the state directorate for religious affairs. end you can ask if there are many things are planning to do is an accordance with the
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islamic laws. whether lotteries are legal or celebrating the new year or read a paper is in conformity are issues. that does not carry any legal weight but that is noteworthy. there is also a massive expansion of forces under the akp route they used to be available only for children under -- over the age of 12 but for those facilities the training of teachers to change the situation. but now we very clearly see how that was supportive of
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the policies of the government. there is also an increasing stock of the organization to the role of women and the increasing role of cry me capitalism in and of course, as the ambassador has mentioned the policy like libya aware turkey is supportive of jihadi groups. to understand why this is happening very often alienated turkey to see them
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focused the basically it is more and more unstable than somebody else from the akp but then rebut that have this problem. not that if the nature was wrong but something else was wrong all along the way. but the ideological bolick -- it is what it is consistent with your seeing played out consistent a.
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that movement from which it came is much more radical and it is true and it is an important point the tradition in turkey refrains from being violent. but we see those ideas that are propagated very quickly the three routes to put this movement to bring alien inspiration with that turkish islam into the turkish mainstream without the in words but being spiritual order but it is
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very extremely political. so that is first ideologically but the turkish the interest in the 1920's and '30's if you look at what they believe there were highly inspired by the european ideologies in the '30's particularly those first ideologies passionate opponents of the west. that third element of the tradition that was very influential from the sixties onward in the turkish islamic movement. . .
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and that they needed the ottoman empire and in principle you come away with the understanding that not only is everything jewish bad that everything bad in the world is jewish.
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it deeply colors the entire movement now course the akp was born out of a breach of this islamic movement and we found the study the akp never did leave islamism behind intellectually. the real changes or rebranding as we call it that took place among islamic intellectuals and politicians about a big akp didn't occur when the akp was created. it started with a creation of the party which preceded the akp created after 1997. where the akp gehman was derivative fair can in the old guard which was a block in the process of their political ambition and occurred after the party was closed down by the court.
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we discussed in great detail how this process of rebranding was very technical in nature and is important to note he was actually after the coup of 1997 embrace the e.u. and embrace the issue of applying to the european court for redress against the closure of the party magically in this book published in 2014 there is nothing about the e.u. and nothing about democracy. as if it had never happened to the hard-core islamist ideologies of the 1960s and 70s. and in principle i think what you are left with, the conclusion is that the rebranding of the akp never went to the core issue. that is it never went to the core issue that the islamic movement in turkey and the people who very much are today remain the decision-makers in the akp had a worldview that
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remained based on a delusional conspiratorial worldview. and therefore i think there is a linear link actually between the consolidation of the akp and a return to the hard-core islamist ideas and values that were part of the islamist movement in turkey in the 1960s and 1970s. looking at the june election we found that erdogan was everywhere in rallies, on posters and the defeat of the akp in june was in fact people saying no to the idea of a presidential system and off author -- authoritarian system but what you find in the november election you don't find erdogan at rallies. you don't find erdogan on posters. the akp try to present itself as a party and not as a vehicle for one single individual ambition and i think that's one of the reasons why the akp exists and was successful in this election. people voted for the party and
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for civility but not for erdogan. that of course doesn't change the fact that erdogan will push the presidential system but i think with the conclusion to our study more importantly whether or not he succeeds in having constitutional backing for a system that in practice is lardy existing he will have at least four more years impact on turkey and make it irreversibly more middle eastern country but a more polarized an unstable country that it -- then it was when on egypt took power. >> thank you svante. >> thank you. alfred whitehead said the tradition of western philosophy consisted of footnotes to plato which is one of the reasons i decided to study philosophy. i could do plato and be done with it but in the same way what i have to say looking at footnotes to the presentations
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it's hard to read about turkey today without seeing the word authoritarian pop pop up and it's hard to ignore what's been happening in turkey for the last an app years without coming to the conclusion that there is a departure from democracy beginning with the gassy park protest in may of 2013 that were met with a brutal police response followed by the december 17 investigations into corruption and the prosecutors who brought the charges and the police forces responsible were dismissed. it became clear that then prime minister and now president erdogan called the shots in turkey but the purpose of this paper was to examine the nature of authoritarianism more deeply and ask where does it come from what is its nature was a structure, how is being implemented and why it matters. i think on the first the
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argument we make in the paper is all of the trends we are seeing in turkey today are not the more result of something that mark is what happened in 2013 and not the result of the break the erdogan had and also purely personal ambitions and not party wide objectives as svante laid out. the really trace the akp's ideology back to erdogan which is an authoritarian ideology. if you look at the structure of the various parties said erdogan lead over his political tenure they were authoritarian and structured with erdogan being the leader and therefore it's not surprising that is what we are seeing manifesting and as the party that is the inheritor of that tradition. there is a question of how has this, out and the argument that
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we put forward is that the democratic movement that you see in 2002 and 2003 when the akp is first elected which actually earns auditions from western leaders that this is a democratic party that will maybe solve the democratic deficit is really actually the entrée in some ways to the authoritarianism that we see today. in order for the akp to stay in power to avoid a state that the predecessors had met and the coup that forced everyone from power attempts the predecessors predecessors -- though still being fresh in people's minds and the akp's mind they could stay in power without being meddle with. the first step towards that was clearing the underbrush and clearing the threads to the rule which is primarily the military
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which is what we see in 2006, 2007 in 2008 with a sledgehammer case. the allegations of coup plotting terrorism with the military journalists. and you see basically the akp completely swing the pendulum and the other way and become a mirror image. first they were the outsiders trying to clear away the established institutions of the state that might oppose them and suddenly they become institutions of the state and they try to clear away the social and economic institutions that might oppose them so what you really see in turkey is this authoritarianism on two levels. one is the institutional -- the institutionalized -- deinstitutionalization that svante mention in the concentration of power and erdogan's hands and doing away with the checks and balances and separation of power, rule of law that is meant to shield the use of power so you see a tinkering
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in the 2010 constitutional referendum and the last two years with the laws that govern the body that controls how it judges and prosecutors are pointed so suddenly you start stacking the courts essentially allowing erdogan to dig tape who the judges are and how decisions are made to abc rule of law separation of powers. the media regulatory body which leads to some of the invasions of media freedom that ambassador adelman mentioned in the second level of authoritarianism i see is really the elimination of possible sources of opposition and a closing and up civil society both in terms of media freedoms as we saw dramatically in the lead-up to the election and the imprisonment of journalists in and the targeting of journalists. some of this being done through the government means through
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legal means but a lot of it being done extra legally with mob showing up in opposition, newspapers sometimes led by government entities and party mps but not in any sort of official capacity and ransacking those offices of mobs showing up and ransacking political parties offices. and you also see this in economics which svante briefly mentioned where you see a crony capitalism emerged where contracts are a means both of enriching supporters of the government as well as the parties enriching itself but also pushing up from the economy and access to wealth to being able to own media companies and mount opposition. anyone who doesn't agree so you really see a systematic authoritarianism on those levels
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of the government but also within civil society, the media and the economy. the question of why this matters as svante said it's about stability. turkey has multiple crosscut cleavages. often we tend to talk about the akp as sort of the socially conservative for the pious or secularist or kamala's versus the pious but it's much more than that. you have the sunnis versus the dash and the turks versus the kurds. worse than that i think what you have seen between june and the november election is that they really hardened in a way that appears difficult to reverse at this point. going into the june election there's a lot of optimism specifically around the possibility that the akp in the kurdish card he might cross the threshold for the first time and
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also always moderate making each power. the possibility of a sense of change and the democratic process. a lot of the members of the opposition that sense of hope evaporated by the time the november election came around. it seemed apparent that president erdogan were willing to take the country to the brink of war and destabilize the country to make the argument that they could wring stability back and it would be the right choice. the other reason this matters in washington erdogan's antics are seen as a electoral strategies. turkey has had four elections and last two years so it's often very easy to say they are just shutting down youtube and twitter because they need to do
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this before the election but after the election don't worry everything will come back. he's just cracking down on the currency before the election but after the election don't worry everything will change. first of all we haven't seen that in the multiple times we have heard this would happen it hasn't but secondly there's a circular logic here where we say we shouldn't worry about erdogan's authoritarian smc gets what he wants but for the elections he won't resort to that. as svante said it's to create this authoritarian system that he's not shy talking about it more effectively trying to persuade ourselves that it torit. some is displaying now once -- will go away once he has the opportunity to display or authoritarianism which seems a little circular so paying attention to the ideology and objectives that are driving erdogan in the party understand
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where the country will be going in the future. thanks. >> thanks. i guess much of what there is to say about the election and the outlook has been said so i will do my best to make it interesting. you know for me, i should say erdogan was on somewhat of a losing streak even though he was always coming in first in the elections. i think akp did worse than expected in the local elections in 2014 in the presidential election he got just under 52%. to essentially nobody's. he emerges a significant
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political heavyweight in many ways but he was essentially unknown at the time of the presidential election. akp lost its majority in june. and i guess to me this election showed erdogan so much for the midas touch in politics that he had had previously. it took some guts to roll the dice. maybe he didn't have much choice because he was frightened of not having a majority, but nobody expected a success and he did succeed. i think also and i'm not sure if it was svante or blaise that
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alluded to this i guess he showed a little bit more flexibility than i expected and survey show after the last election that both his presence, his very shrill campaigning for akp and his emphasis on a presidential system which remains not very popular. the overwhelming majority of turks oppose it. those two elements actually heard akp so what did he do? and you know for somebody we tend to think of them as such a test that he wouldn't be able to do this but it largely kept himself out of the campaign in november and you didn't hear much about the presidential system. so he showed actually to me surprising tactical flexibility.
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i want to say one thing. a lot of negative things have been said about the polls in turkey for good reason. there was actually a great cartoon that somebody sent me. i have to share with you. i think it will mean something to those of you who are familiar with turkish politics anyway. it shows the leaders of the three losing parties sitting around and grumbling about how terrible the polls were and how they missed it entirely and they are all saying yeah how can those pollsters stayed there? they all ought to resign. alluding to the fact that turkish party leaders virtually never resign. there is one poll that i think, i think something positive has to be said about it. i think they primarily do market research. they are the only ones who have done something close to exit
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polling in turkey which are the polls right after, the day after the elections. they are the june 8 pole. it had over 20% of mh p. voters saying that if they had known how the election would turn out that they would have voted for it akp. and i think i don't know how good the poll list. i can't vouch for it. i'm not here to advertise for it at either erdogan -- erdogan pulls most of them showing something similar because on day one after june 7 the pro-government papers were all saying the solution is a new election. likely a new election. i was before any of and if the politicians had said anything so he obviously believes the kind of results that came out of that i think that already created the
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base of voters for akp, which he built on to his victory in november. he knows there was already significant chunk of voters who were unhappy with a hung parliament and were going to vote for him for the sake of a majority. now, i do see it like i do many commentators have said this is was a vote for stability and if those polls which by the way is only in turkish at this point but for those of you who have forward and mentoring knowledge of turkey -- turkish it's pretty easy to read. even i could read it. i had some very interesting bings in it but look i think although the boat was for stability i think what the turks are going to reap is a great deal of instability and here i will just kick off a lot of
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things that have already been said. it's clear that erdogan sees this vote as an affirmation of his policy so i think we can expect that he will continue to push the presidential system. there are party ben indications from his advisers that they intend to push along those lines in the now he is 13 votes short in parliament of having enough votes to pass a constitutional amendment that could be brought up for referendum but given some of the past cooperation between akp and the nationalist mhp i wouldn't be shocked to see him call those extra votes from mhp. and even though should take it
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to a referendum right now roughly 70% of turks say, and this is again from this recent poll after the november election say they favor a parliamentary system but once the campaign for a referendum were involved, i mean who knows what would happen because akp has many levers and erdogan is very influential. i think we'll see the presidential system. we are going to see a continuation of the war on the pkk. at any rate the pkk has what i think as a plunder the kurdish cause. it says that it's temporary cease-fire is over. we are likely to see a crackdown on universities.
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there are new regulations passed early before the election that gives the higher education council the right to take over universities. media, it's the worst era really that i can remember and my memory goes back a long way. and just some of the recent things. just to highlight and now they have been said already because the police storming the building and just taking the tv stations off the air and the newspapers were taking over and the next day they flipped 180 degrees editorially. >> were 360 degrees as the prime minister would say. i think one of the most disturbing things and maybe there are some in the audience who can provide some context, i don't remember anything like this. there are been nearly three of
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the cases of journalists and others who have been indicted, arrested find for insulting the president. the laws on the books. i don't remember it ever being invoked quite so often. i do remember senior officials in turkey filing libel suits including president o. zell many years ago but it's an almost foolproof way of getting people to shut up. the cracked down will obviously continue and i just want to emphasize one point with this election. as many of you know in advance a corruption case was opened
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against many akp associated people followed by a series of leaks of recordings which would implicate erdogan himself. much of subsequent turkish political history i think we can say until november 1 has probably been about the president trying to avoid those charges coming to him. some people would argue that's actually why he insisted on becoming president because it's much harder to get to a president. it takes three-quarters vote for impeachment, otherwise he is basically beyond the law. some would argue that's why he wanted to, why he needed a majority government because even a coalition government might have been difficult for any non-akp party not to vote in favor of pursuing these
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corruption charges. now he's insulated from most charges and i think that story is pretty much over. so i think there is going to be some tough times ahead. not to mention the economy has been struggling. i will say a couple of things about the united states. is there some silver lining? well, you know i'm trying to be objective. perhaps from the u.s. point of view the fact that we have been using an agreement with what was an interim government that wasn't akp dominated government since late july. i guess this likely assures we will continue to use it in the fight against isis.
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perhaps if chp had been part of the government there would have been any interruption but chp has its elements and chp has its own cut about syria in the united states. maybe there would have been some complications another walmart. when we fight a war winning that war tends to dominate all aspects of our policy and that's understandable. i think it's going to be the dominant element. in our turkey policy in the days ahead but i would echo what ambassador edelman said it's extremely important to continue to focus on the freedom deficit in particular and the repression of freedom of expression. in turkey. i say continue because i would say despite her sticky jeepneys in turkey we have made some
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important statements. we are going to have to keep that out front and i think the first test of how we are going to balance that are important test will come this weekend. president obama will be in turkey for the g20 summit and i will tell you at the previous g20 summit he seemed to try to evade prime minister erdogan with whom he once had a close relationship since 2013 has not. it's very difficult to evade your host and i think it will be very interesting to see how the president balances. appreciation for the fact that we are able to use turkish bases in the fight against isil with a very deep concern about the lack of freedom and the declining freedom in turkey and i will leave it there.
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>> thank you. >> okay, thank you. i will try and be quick because i know we want to leave time. maybe ambassador edelman will be here for a few minutes and maybe people can ask them some questions. i would just underscore what allen said. as much as i don't like it i think this really, this election really did highlight erdogan's erdogan's -- turkish politics. whatever people thought about june 7, that was going to be the dagger to the heart to put an end to the erdogan reign over turkish politics and the aftermath of what happened november 1 to think we have to say was at most a stumbled and he remains a giant in his ability to manipulate, to
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intimidate, to threaten, to persuade, to inspire and demagogue the turkish public to serve his own political ends. i think it's without parallel in the turkish system and that certainly was the case with the amazing five-month period to have gone from that stinging rebuke in june to as everybody has said to the stunning victory on november 1. none of the experts and certainly not the pollsters predicted this resounding overwhelming victory by the akp and its return to majority rule. although more of an earthquake because it was so unexpected and unpredicted. except perhaps for president erdogan himself. as allen said he was the one that from the start said we are
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going to scuttle these coalition talks. we are going to go to new elections. if he took advantage of the assassination of the two policemen in july, seized on a provocation and basically handed the peace park riot -- peace process and we launched full-scale -- against pkk and as my colleagues have said it was he who decided that he was going to double down on crushing all forms of dissent inside of turkey particularly in the media and i mean really astounding cases of repression of the media as well as political opponents, particularly within the kurdish dominated h. e. p. -- hdp so this was a systematic strategy
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as blaise has preferred to buy erdogan of manufactured chaos, manufactured instability, violence and intimidation to essentially to scare the turkish people into revisiting the results of june 7, and returning the akp tube monopoly power because if they didn't basically it was as much a threat as a promise that things could get very -- much much worse and faced with a situation in which stability was the question inside of turkey, i think their only choice was to return to akp to power. they felt the majority of the voters felt that was their only option was a strong akp government. and it was a miraculous result when you think about what he did his strategy was clearly, he had
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to whip up some level of national hysteria and went back nationalist voters and he got them hp to back the akp. at the same time he needed to depress the hdp vote and the kurdish vote and take so many voters away and he succeeded spectacularly on both accounts. mhp loss 40 seats and i'm assuming most of them went to akp and hdp lost more than a million voters i think who were overwhelmingly kurdish voters such as think about what he did. one at the same time he won over millions of anti-kurdish right-wing nationalists and won over close to a million conservative kurdish boats. that's quite an extraordinary feat to be able to thread that needle, but he did it and again
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i think it underscores his mastery of turkish politics. what does it mean from here? i agree with my colleagues, i think it's bad news. i think the erdogan will see this as a vindication, as a mandate to continue doing what he's doing that this policy worked and that in fact whatever narrow window of opportunity exists on june 7 to begin dialing back the trajectory towards the door. -ism in turkey erdogan made sure over the last five months that he was going to slam it shut and my guess the next four years until the voters go to the polls again he's going to make sure it's nailed shut and democracy and her wisdom and human rights and freedom of the press my gas are all going to suffer tremendously. i think he will push this notion of an imperial presidency
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whether the turkish people want it or not. i think he will figure out a way to get it and if it means dominated not just 70% of the media in turkey as he does now if it requires him dominated 90% or 100% i think that's what he will do. and if he needs 13 other parliamentarians outside of the akp to be able to go to a constitutional referendum on an executive presidency i think with the political winds at his back, with all of the powers of the state in his command including all the coercive powers and all the incentives that the state can potentially provide to these parliamentarians, i think 13 seats is not a high hurdle or a big obstacle for him to work on over the course of next year in order to get that referendum. the peace process with the kurds , again i'm not sure but
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the fact is that pushing the peace process i think he will look back and say it cost me votes. it cost me both greater costs may nationalist votes. i think this election underscores how important a right-wing nationalist constituency is to his ability to consolidate power. i think that is a lesson he will take and reaching out to the kurds looking like i was pursuing a settlement hurt me. in fact over the last five months increased tensions, increased conflict, increased violence with the kurds, that got me november 1. that's the path to go. maybe not full-scale war. the cost of that politically economically in terms of how far investors look at turkey that could be not a place he wants to go but the thought of low-level tensions, continued simmering conflict, my guess is that is
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what we are likely to see, a continuation. in syria, we will see but i think this attitude on the kurdish question this increased sense of being able to play the nationalist card of seeing kurdish aspirations as a threat and even a mortal threat to turkey's territorial integrity, i think that could spill over onto the syrian front and particularly the kurdish question inside of syria. i think the fact that increasingly it looks like u.s. strategy is growingly dependent on the syrian kurdish y. p.j. the militia there which isn't that closely aligned with the pkk inside of turkey, the u.s. is really holding on tuesday will y. p.j. as an integral ability to fight isis on the ground including being able to
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put pressure on it's capital in raqqa which must be one of the main lines of our operations there. secretary carter has recently said in testimony i think that clearly and the turks have said that is a major major problem for them. even perhaps a red line, the notion of abutting u.s. ypj alliance on their border is something that they have said they cannot tolerate. up to now we have seen isolated incidents of some artillery, some airstrikes by turkey on ypj positions across the border but i think that's something to watch and no doubt hopefully this weekend and early next week and when the person doesn't talk to erdogan trying to reach some better understanding about where we are headed on syria is going to be very important including what they are going to do or not do with the way pg.
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the way pg has the tip of the spear fighting isis then what is the answer? who else is going to do it? what is turkey going to do? it's certainly not the answer that turkey has had so far which is essentially to empower the non-isis radical jihad is across the border. that's no answer for the u.s. government. that's not a serious alternative to what we are trying to do on the ground against isis and now there's this question of what skin is turkey willing to put in the game? subtle hints or not-so-subtle hints that they will give very serious that they have a coalition that they can work with. they don't put sonogram. are they prepared to go in and put boots on the ground in a police state sewn inside of syria? we will see you. that's a question worth pursuing but i don't think it's going to be an easy discussion and there are real potential landmines
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between us and the turks now over serious. i'm not at all sure that this election makes it any easier to resolve. in some ways it may make it even tougher because of where erdogan and the turkish military is on the question right now of the kurds. believe me there are -- there is no doubt a lot of turks that are fighting inside of syria with a ypj in the turks have said if there are u.s. weapons to go to sub tan that end up inside turkey being used against turkish security forces that will be a real diplomatic crisis between united the united states and turkey. there are a lot of things moving now that could point us in that kind of direction. i think that's something we will very much want to head off. i would finally say stepping back to the larger picture here for me is that i don't know how narrow the window was but i do
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think it was a window that was opened after june 7. in which turkey may have had a chance to actually begin to put the brakes on this in juggernaut of erdogan hurtling towards a more authoritarian future for turkey. i think we probably will look back in retrospect and see this election on november 1 as a real hinge point for the country where did face a chance to go and perhaps two different directions. there may have been an off ramp for them off of the superhighway of erdogan towards putinism with the nasty islamist twists to it. i think they thought about it. they thought about it a second time. they may have changed their mind and didn't take that exit and now it's in their rearview mirror and may have ended up in the express lane to some form of
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turkish putinism. and getting back to that exit from this very bad trajectory is going to be very very difficult and erdogan is going to make it very difficult if not impossible to have that kind of exit ramp and 2019. i think that will be a singular strategic purpose of his, to make sure that he doesn't have to go through the kind of experience he went through june the seventh ever, ever again. so on that cheery note. >> thank you. thanks to all for a substantive discussion. i refrained my comments to use the time that we have left for questions from the audience. we will start here with dan.
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>> daniel, m. professor here at sites. i would like to hear a little bit more about countervailing forces. you mentioned the courts but we have heard little about the military as a potential countervailing force of the business community. the opposition political party. democracy doesn't happen because people are nice to each other. there is some sort of force that works against it. if you could please keep answers short so we could have more questions coming. who wants to start? >> there are countervailing forces but i don't think they are powerful enough. you mentioned the military.
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they are a speculate about what the military is thinking. i think it's clear that erdogan wants the military on his side. and the military is an opaque institution but i think as much as we can see into it, they strongly support the idea of going after the pkk. they see the pkk is a greater threat than is isis and they see way pg -- ypj and pkk is more or less the same. i think they feel this way enough that maybe it's not even completely clear who was driving the policy more but i think erdogan and that military are probably more or less in lockstep on this. i think there are other issues where they can put the brakes on and they have but the brakes on but i don't think it's about
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domestic politics. its foreign-policy. there was a rumor about two months ago that turkey was about to send land forces into syria. it's wrongly opposed by the turkish public. every poll has shown that. according to all reports and that's all we have to go by, the military said we are not going to do it. i think the military never lost total power in turkey and i'm not sure. i may be in the minority on this. obviously with all the officers that were arrested, they were hurt badly. they certainly lost their ability to affect domestic politics, but they have in certain ways retain their autonomy and when it comes to the use of them they are decisive. they are not going to -- and our
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system the military might say mr. president this is a difficult operation. i'm not sure we can do that if the president says do it our guys will salute. i don't think in turkey the military has ever been like that even in its lowest moment. by the way the military has resisted in other ways too. the military system is still in advance. they control their own educational system. there was an effort and was publicly announced by the government at one point that they wanted graduates of these state-sponsored parochial schools that svante mentioned, to be eligible for acceptance into military academies. there was a big fight that they would be eligible for regular universities. the military said no.
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so it's not 100% to nothing but when it comes to domestic politics i don't really see. that did business community maybe doesn't like erdogan so much that they are are a lot of people this so-called anatolian tigers who are significant factor. they are very much supportive of them. >> any comments? >> i would say one -- what countervailing forces there are are -- if they even want to be. it's not clear if they want to be involved but if they would have wouldn't be democratically. the big businesses that allen mentioned a lot of the lead in turkey are deciding to leave to aid rather than continuing to
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live under the erdogan system where their liberties are going to be forsaken. among the kurds one of the stories that hasn't really been discussed is the radicalization of the kurdish youth in some of these towns where there is lots of fighting between security forces and kurdish youth. they were not members of the atk train to the congo mountains. there are local views have been radicalized by what was going on. again that's not a very democratic process. the one place that might be able to say that there is countervailing force emerging is the person that allen mentioned, the coleader of the sub 10 -- ypj. erdogan his frame much limited
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by the politics of this his party even though he aspires to be a national party. on one hand he is a danger, perceived as a danger to erdogan and now he's perceived as a danger to pkk. i think one of the things i learned when i was in turkey recently as so many people want him dead than if he were to be assassinated i would even know who to suspect. >> thank you. first of all i would like to commend this panel and the position of the bbc for providing such an accurate assessment about what's happening in turkey so thank you for maintaining that position. it's a juror resource. one rumor following the g20 that they might actually see immediate aftermath.
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i guess my question is directed to john hannah. and i wish ambassador edelman were still here. from that perspective the decision-makers in the room we are going to be dividing the presidents, it's nice that we are talking about erdogan took the brakes off and this is a dangerous regime. is anybody going to bias the president saying we shouldn't mess with these guys or who are we doing business with? erdogan has the united states and europe over a barrel with a lot of things. he has managed to pull a lot of levers and the plastic politics. is it the case that is going to be able to do this at the international level? is anybody going to say dan this is not acceptable? >> i think it's a good question by the way he is one of our great diplomats on turkey. ambassador homes that does a lot
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and i would say no, my guess is not. i think there is a sort of sobering reality that hit the obama administration about what they are dealing with in turkey which actually took a very long time for people in this town to realize. or we had to study back in 2002, 2003 to understand what we were dealing with. i think it was an awful lot of wishful thinking about where erdogan in the akp would take turkey and i think we are learning that now that we have developed strategies to do what we could to put backstops in support of turkish democracy and freedom of the press and the rule of law and all the things we care about. i think at the end of the day in the long-term it's vital for having a serious stable partner
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and a nato country. but i think allen is right at the end of the day especially now in the context that we are dealing with in the middle east today where there seems to be something of a regional melt down underway which this president has in fact launched a war against this terrorist organization and which we are getting some modicum of support now from the turkish government. i think he has manipulated that quite successfully. i have no doubt the decision to grant us access to those bases was very much tied and that the service of his own domestic agenda with an eye toward what he wanted to do vis-à-vis the pkk and to buy some level of u.s. acquiescence and silence. in the same way i have almost no
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doubt that what happened all of a sudden after several years of this conflict is a rush of people i've turkey into europe creating this kind of crisis on europe's doorstep was so used to say no accident comrade. i do believe there was some level of manipulation there that erdogan does have his hands on the tap so to speak with regard to this refugee crisis. very much understands it's using this as leverage now in his dealings with both europe and the united states and the west. if they want to have any hope in solving this crisis, not to mention the broader crisis in syria, is difficult to partners turkey has been the hope of getting a settlement without turkey somehow involved are slim to none and this crisis gets much worse if that requires you
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to lower your voice and look away if from the moment regarding basically the dismantlement of the turkish democracy and turkish rule of law, so be it. these guys are out of office another 15 months anyway and it will be somebody else's problem to deal with. for them i think they will say listen we need to do with them under these difficult regional issues and they can manage the nature of internal turkish politics. unfortunately, think it will come back to bite us at some point. >> turkey's strategic import has has -- importance is always covered a multitude of sin and i don't think, that's no different now. we need turkey for the war against isis. as long as we feel they are not going to change but i did want to qualify a little bit for
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comments that have been made that the administration has been saying anything. i think they have actually, i've been surprised to be honest with some of the strong statements if you go back and look at press briefings. they have been very tough on turkey, on freedom of expression , and also following the election, the u.s. government did not congratulate akp. it's very unusual in a landslide like this. we said we are waiting for the official vote which always comes out of turkey every 10 days, 10 days after the election. but we won't speculate on the result. we are the only ones in the world who wouldn't speculate on but the results were. that was a clear message that we were very unhappy about the
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human rights situation and the fact that the campaign had taken place under situation of great opposition. i think we have to be fair to the u.s. government. >> this has been an excellent panel. i wanted to ask ambassador edelman a question. he is gone so i will pitch this this -- pitch this to the whole panel. you mentioned turkey has many cleavages and if you set aside religion and recall the akp came to power on the promise of economic governance the economy is slowing. what is the long-term or near-term implications of this for erdogan and the atp?
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>> do we have an economist around the panel? i think for a long time other institutions have less of a turkey has the most at risk emerging economy and you have seen overlong period of time tensions within the turkish government where erdogan was more interested in populous moves in did like the independence of the central bank and wanted to lower interest rates. there was a resistance from the professionals, people in government like -- who is back in some capacity. we will see what happens but it seems to me the more erdogan capitalizes on this position of power that's not good news for the management of the economy and moreover right now the way
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the consolidation of power the crony capitalist type of economy that erdogan is building from 2010 to today is really off the rails compared to what it used to be. i don't see that changing. if anything it's likely to get worse which means the conditions for real economic downturn in turkey are certainly there. there needs to be a trigger of some form, and are internal or trigger. another election could then that trigger and i think they spread that propaganda which has also helped them with the election. the question is what would happen if there was an economic downturn? many people in turkey say the only way we can get rid of erdogan is find economic crisis. i don't think it would actually work that way. think would hasten the system menu but push back any very repressive way.
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>> hi everybody. i'm a senior fellow for the stability institute. a couple of you have touched upon this but i want to go back and look from the eyes of the voters in turkey. try to understand why they gave erdogan a majority, a resounding majority. was it off because they remembered the good times between the guess who was between 2003 and 2007 when things were going well. the turkish economy was growing. what was the common people the anatolian tigers i guess i could say, why would they vote for the party and propel it to the majority?
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>> i could start and they think there is an assumption that democracy matters to a lot of voters. it may at some point but i don't think it's necessarily the main concern. a colleague of ours spoke after the terrible mine tragedy in turkey. he noticed that the akp swept the local election. he actually went there not some 100 doors and asked people who they would vote for and why. they all said they would vote for the akp. he said why did you than they said look i have a mortgage on my house. i have a mortgage on my car and have a mortgage on my washing machine. it goes back to bill's question question -- it's those levels we are talking about which means people are very fearful of
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instability. then if you look at the studies like a recent interview by non-turkish social scientist talked about what position as a lector at? then you have what you call if you will the lower middle class. ..
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>> >> europe very much made a bargain they would look either way with the turkey with the democratic violations at the scene of turkey doing more to keep the refugees in turkey. and also with some social
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cost you have what are mostly syrians coming into the communities of southern turkey so there is a cost but it is run the europeans are willing to bear to keep turkey. >> this brings us to the end of this interesting discussion. it is important for the neighborhood of turkey as well. with that economic growth engine and what happens in turkey so we will be watching to discuss what happens in turkey the next couple of years to reduce
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>> my question is about growing concern of advanced russian arms entering syria at unprecedented levels and the possibility for advanced arms to pass to syrian forces and even to groups like hezbollah, which is high. what is the u.s. prepared to do to counter this, what have we done, what could we do more of to ensure the russian arms don't end up in the hands of hezbollah >> well, we have the same concerns that you do about the weapon flowing into syria from russia, from iran. we have raised concerns
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regularly with russians including presidential level and continue to monitor what exactly happens with them. the russians have now made a decision to put in ground art -- artillerary. >> my second question is russia has conducted a number of air strikes, some strikes 30-40 miles from the israeli border. iran has sent troops and military advisers including on golden heights bringing iran's influence to israel's doorsteps. jihadi's groups continues to gain including in golden
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heights. how fighting could spill over and what major concerns from the israel? >> all these elements that you have raised, pressure and iranian presence, we are in constant contact with the israelly government and are working collaboratively on this. the israelis can pretty much take care of this problem and they have shown that in a number of way that is we can, perhaps, discus later but we have lots of collaboration on this issue. on a broader issue, the prime minister will be here. we have given millions of dollars -- billions of dollars
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and discussing ways to enhance israel security generally, but these are the concerns with israel and we meet with them and address with them in all kinds of ways. >> thank you, i yield back. >> thank you. my question is on syria and then iran. i've been briefed on the target packages in syria and i think as you indicated, i think this is -- first of all, when you don't have a strategy and you fail to have a strategy, you end up with a power vacuum and now we have russia filling that power vacuum , and now it's really created a complicated situation from my perspective. when i look at the target packages of russian strike, it
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-- as you mentioned 90% are antiassad, only 10% or even remotely target toward isis. it raises the question of why is russia there, what is their intent. i talked to our partners in the middle east. some say that russia told them to defeat isis and the only reason they are there is to support the assad regime. very briefly, what do you believe is russia's intent in the region? >> their main intent to bashar al-assad. he was losing ground. they want to protect their interest. they want to reassert themselves, but their primary was to sure up bashar al-assad.
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>> i tend to agree with it. this is the problem that this now presents. when i talk to the 50 special forces guys, they are our best but that's not going to win the day. i would argue they are in harm's way right now. if there was a strategy and when i talked to nations like turkey and jordan, they were willing to put a ground force in there to defeat isis but would never do so if they empowered assad. that was part of the agreement. now that the russians are there backing assad, it doesn't look like he's going anywhere any time soon. so where do we get our ground force now? >> embassador nuland can speak more about this.
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as i mentioned the coalition would be supported by our special forces and frankly we've had discussed and we have worked very closely with the jordanians. >> it's going to be difficult to get a sooni ground force now that's assad -- it's going to be difficult to get assad out now that the russians are in there. >> let me stress that that is our goal to get assad out and we don't think the russians have -- are going to have such an easy walk through syria. >> i think if you could reach a
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political reconciliation from the rest of the country, that's a possibility, right now it's about decon application with the russians so we don't kill each other over there. do you foresee any remote possibility the joint strategy to defeat isis with the russians >> the only end up we end up in a joint strategy is if the russians agree to the general premise to cease fire and decision on getting rid of assad, that's what the secretary has been working on. in the meantime we are working on isis and they are working in another area. i don't see working together and that would allow us in turn to focus -- >> i would be very careful in trusting them. but i will tell you based on
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boston bombing experience, we have a common enemy and that's jehadist. we know there's thousands of them. as that becomes more of a problem for them, their desire to move away from protecting the regime hopefully will shift. >> i think that's what's so frustrating with them, that we ought to share a goal of defeating isis and those who come from russia to join isis, but that's not what the russian military is currently focused on. >> my last question is with respect to iran. we reached this agreement that i disagreed with but more or less it's moving forward, iran has taken provocative actions,
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activities via the irgc. i sent a letter to the president of the united states requesting that the irgc be placed on the foreign terrorist organization list because they are the terror arm of iran. this would not look to sanctions, we keep the sanction in place, ship them towards these activities, what is your response to whether or not designating the irgc is an fto, whether that is a good decision? >> i'm certain there are subject to sanctions, aren't they? >> they are not designated as a foreign terrorist organization, which would make a difference. >> i can answer that question. i would have to get back to you. i would not think they would
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make the legal criteria but i don't really know. >> i would think being the main sponsor of terror within iran would qualify aster ris organization. embassador nuland. >> again, i refer to anne on the questions involving iran. >> i have not received one at this time. chair recognizes mr. chairman. >> it's always good to have you here. we hear folks, where is your strategy, that imply that is the united states is in control of events, that we own them, that the outcome is determined by what goes on here in washington. that's a very dangerous viewpoint. we can be a force group for good, but to control the
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outcome, i would ask anybody to put forward a strategy that would lead us to peace, stability and democracy in iraq and syria with modest american casualties and modest american costs. george w. bush had a strategy to achieve that for iraq, it failed, and in the future, those who say where is your strategy are really saying, why can't you control the world at no cost, and that's a silly question. we're told by the gentle lady from florida that eel recruits -- evil recruits isis, that's correct. just because the government in bagdad was installed by us
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doesn't mean it's part of the solution. it's part of the problem and we ought to be looking very carefully at our aid to bagdad when the wall street journal can put in the front page how hundreds -- how so many hundred of dollar bills amounting to tens of billions of dollars are shipped from washington and disappearing in iraq, except they are turning up in isis, with isis. embassador patterson i have one more bit of advice for you and you ought to hire a couple of folks who are experts in islamic theology, islamic jurisprudences both of whom are drawn, if you need congress to say, not everybody has to pass the foreign service exam, one or two
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experts, the foreign service exam does not ask the difference between a good jahid and a bad jadid. i know. as to chemical weapons, the administration achieved a major victory in getting all the chemical out of syria. chlorine remains but it's next to every pool in our district. it's unfortunate that it's been used as a weapon. but those chemical that are illegal, per say, appear to have been removed from syria, you did have a great result on that issue. the solution to the refugee crisis is peace in syria, not to cancel syria and move its population to europe. we had a policy that many of us pushed here in congress to arm
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the reasonable elements in syria. that policy has basically failed. first you did it years after you started pushing for it. second, it is still subject to the incredible and ridiculous condition that those we arm have to convince us that they do not intend to fight assad. any reasonable patriotic syrian wants intend to fight assad. no wonder we only find 50 people and we only have five on the battlefield. how do you find someone who is reasonable that doesn't hate assad. i will point out that while isis has the bad taste to put its murderers right there on television, beheadings, it's iran and assad that pose the greater threat to the united states if killed far more innocent and have killed far more americans. now turning to russia, russia is
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not in a terribly strong position. fourty-five-dollar a barrel oil. they cannot waste resources on per -- peripheral matter. if the ukraine is successful, it becomes a model inspiring all russians to change and follow that model given the very close history between the ukraine and russia. syrian contrast is not at the center of russia's universe. there are substantial costs to what russia is doing, syria and assad are very close to the center of iran's national security. they dream of a control to
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mediterranean. assad has been the largest ally. the question is not why iran doing what they are doing, but why is russia. and then we look at the timing. russia deployed forces at substantial long-term risk and cost to russia a couple of days after it became certain to those who are observing things specially here in congress that iran would get its hands on 130 billion. first they had to sign the agreement, they might not get their money, yet get to look around here and making sure congress wasn't going to blow the agreement, it was pretty apparent we weren't going to blow up the agreement a few weeks after it was signed. it was a day or two after a lot of us concluded that congress was not going to prevent this agreement from going to effect for the first couple of years, that iran was going to get its hands on the money, that russia
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started effort. so the question is iran is sending directly to russia, would we know about it? so i'll ask both of you, since one focuses on iran, the middle east and one on europe if there was a transfer of a billion dollars from taran or moscow or otherwise, would we know about it and would it be public? >> congressman i don't think at this stage we have seen any payments to russia. on the contrary we see russia >> if it was a transfer of a billion dollars this winter, are you confident that you know about it?
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>> let me answer that as not confident but i think the chances are pretty good. >> pretty good. okay. and embassador nuland. >> well, if it was in any dollar denominated form, but if they wanted to do iranian currency, maybe not. >> or euros. >> euros, i think we'd know. >> you'd know about a transfer of a billion dollars. so then let me ask, obviously north korea was paid a billion and a half a billion and the tremendous aid that they provided to a syrian or a syrian-iranian nuclear program, did we know about that or did the israelis brought to us after
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the north korean received payment? >> i don't know the answer to that. i know that we have close cooperation of the israelis. >> israel spotted the location. nobody spotted the money. and so the confidence that bad guys can move money without us knowing or russia is financing this without being paid by iran is -- is untested. i yield back. >> chair, thank you, chair recognizes for question. thank you embassadors for being here. the use of dod, of these 50 special operate -- operators is an extension of diplomac of polly that we would like to see
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happen in the middle east or anywhere. it's just an extension. if you see it -- is there anywhere in the mix department is in chain of command or people are wear a military uniform or paid by the department of defense acting in syria and iraq and this operation, is there any state department involvement in the decision-making process about what they do and how they conduct business? >> yeah, absolutely, mr. chairman. the state department through secretary, participate in all discussions and they work closely with the turkish government to work on the effort to close the border and these special forces advisers are critical to that effort, so yes,
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we've been deeply involved in that. >> are you involved in chain of command? >> not the chain of command. there have been state representatives on these teams and embassador who have discussed the efforts at great lengths with the turks. >> to come to some conclusion and the military command makes the decisions and makes the orders with what you've come up with? >> with what the president of the united states comes up with and instructs them to do but the special forces adviser are under the command of general lloyd austin. >> okay, so what is their mission, these up to 50 is what i hear special op, what is their mission? >> congressman with respect, i think that's a question that we are going to differ to dod and defer in a classified session
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probably. >> i mean, you had the discussions. you said you had the discussions but you can't tell me the mission right now and that's classified, yet in everything that i read it's to advise and assist. but what we can tell you is where the fellows are going to be deployed and exactly who they are going to be working with -- >> okay, i didn't ask you any of that. >> advise and assist. >> to what end? what's the goal? >> the goal is to enhance our efforts to defeat is sill -- isil and we would be happy to give you a broader briefing on this. close the borders and to put pressure, isil headquarters. >> if you're telling me it's to achieve -- the goal is to close
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the border and somehow at some point defeat isis. i don't want to put words in your mouth. that's what i see, that's what i hear. we have 50 guys that are going, doesn't that just strength assad? right? so he has isis and local soonie that are fighting him and we take -- we take isis, let's just say in the perfect world in a strategy that we have, if you want to call it that, 50 guys defeat isis, doesn't that strengthen assad? i understand that. tell me what happens if -- let's just say the perfect thing happens and you get what you want and 50 operators in conjunction with the curds or whoever they're working for defeat isis, is assad strengthened or is he weakened? he has russia right there right
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behind them attacking the very people that we trained and are supported? we are not doing both, we are doing one. >> we are fighting isil and trying to get a political settlement to give president assad -- >> you don't want to answer that but i would say that it does empower and increase the power of assad. it does that, and so with all due respect to the gentleman that was said there that there's no strategy and that the strategy assumes that we can control everything from the united states, that's absurd, we had a strategy in world war ii. we couldn't control the emepor of japan but we had a strategy and sometimes we had to adapt, i would say this is not a strategy, but that's my -- that's my contention. now, i'm going to take some liberties because everybody else seemed to have done that. now, the president has said his
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white house press secretary said that this is not a combat mission. is syria a combat zone? they are dropping bombs and shooting each other. is it a combat zone or isn't it? >> extremely complex battlefield and what the president said is what you just quoted back to me that it was an advise and assist. >> it could change as the situation dictates. now i expect you to tell me what changes would dictate, what situation would dictate them changing that not patrolling or traveling with but you're going to tell me that's a classified setting in. >> i'm going to tell you i don't know and that's up for the president of the united states and always reserve it is right to change the role of american forces. >> let me ask you this, if this is a combat zone and the forces
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are not on a combat mission, how is it that in may delta force commanders entered syria in helicopters and killed an islamic state leaders and fighters and one of our soldiers was killed just about a week and a half ago, if that's not -- what is that? >> that was sergeant wheeler grew up 20 miles from where i was from. that was a mission to save hostages. >> i know that. but you understand when we -- these young men and women raise their hand and say, they are going to defend the constitution on all enemies foreign and domestic and pledge their lives and it's with the proviso that the commander in chief and sacrifice their lives for nothing and these people are going into combat. we are saying it's not combat but, indeed, it is combat.
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>> of course, it's combat. don't -- these people go into combat because the president of the united states orders them. >> somebody loses their life. they don't come back with a purple heart. it is important -- just a come -- couple of other things. the gentleman next to me that said there was no strategy and those of us who said there was no strategy, that's absurd, this is all tactics and george w. bush had a strategy. he might not have agreed with it at times but there was a strategy and i would also reject that the war in iraq destabilized the area up until the president left iraq, it was pretty stable. it wasn't perfect but it wasn't what it is now. with that, i will recognize
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mr. trout. thank you. >> i want to thank the chair and also thank both of you for being here today and for everything you do for our country. embassador patterson would you say our policy in the last four years have been a success in syria? [inaudible] >> that we've not succeeded in removing bashar al-assad from power, isil is not defeated but it would be a long struggle to defeat isil. >> i mean, is the inability to make a decision a few years back complicated where we are today? >> i don't want to speculate on that, i don't know and i wasn't around when those decisions were made and i don't want to speculate. we are where we are now. >> let's look forward. 50 special positioners and
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continue with strikes and we heard criticism with our policy there, one day russia attacked 94 targets, we attacked one. we are going to start and have been calling out russia for violating international law with respect to the rules of engagement. we are going to ask assad to stop dropping barrel bombs on citizens and meetings about a transitional government, iran would be at the table, opposition groups may or may not be. in this strategy is going to would recollect because this is too complex for russia. they are going to lose interest, they are going the run out of money and it's just the too difficult, is that a fair statement of strategy going forward and if it isn't please enlighten me as to what i just described? >> i don't think that's a fair characterization. >> i heard a number of times
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russia isn't going to be for a long haul. they have no money, it's not a strategic interest they want to put resources behind. it seems to me that the gamble we are taking going forward is strategies going to succeed because russia is going to lose interest. tell me what i missed? >> our strategy is to mobilize the rest of the international community including gulf allies and turkey to work toward a political solution and work hard to defeat isil. i think contributions on the defeat of isil aren't just the 50 special forces but also the strengthening of our position and the steps we are taking in iraq will all accelerate to defeat of isil. that is the key almost of this and sort of been my view in this hearing. >> embassador patterson, you said we are talking to the
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russians. two questions. are they listening? i know we had the mou that was entered to last month. that's evidence that they are listening. are they really listening to what our objectives and goals are and what evidence do you have the fact that we are talking to the russians is moving them around and what our different goals are in syria? ..
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the question is whether continue to participate in that will bring the force of the majority to cause them to reevaluate. >> you said a few minutes ago it will be difficult to get, if i'm putting words in your mouth and quickly please tell me but basically i think is adobe difficult to get a transitional government in russia never gets on the same page with respect to articles in transit. if that's a fair statement, so assuming for the moment they never listen, we never get on the same page, what do we do then? >> i don't think i would quite
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characterizes what you do. one thing the russians have said is the syrian people shipping charge of their own future. the other piece i think we've underplayed although i would defer to assistant secretary patterson is with the series in representatives, whether they are regime folks other than trent lott or whether their streams of the opposition want to take this given the fact that the country thing toward a part of what's happening there. >> but just looking down the road, if russia does will ever move towards a transitional government what do we do then? >> again i think we can project a straight line from here to there. were increasing our support for the moderate opposition. were racing the cost or hitting the wrongful. were trying to mobilize the rest of the initial 20 jalemeh on the russians. we will see. this thing is causing them and causing them at home.
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>> i will yield back but i think it's a mess. when we had good options we did make a decision several years ago. and i think what someone said earlier today is exactly correct, which is which is going to run out the clock. so the next administration will inherit a situation in syria as russia just as engaged as it is today, and option will be even more limited. thank you. i yield back. >> the chair thanks the gentleman and recognizes the gentleman from florida. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate you both being here. i'm amazed at the level of what appears to me, i've only been here for three years in congress but it appears to be high level of incompetence, lack of strategy, lack of planning. it's almost laughable other than it's been over 250,000 syrians slaughtered.
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billions of dollars it's cost us, the risks to our military and i look at the stuff i just want to go through a timeline, since my time in congress. obama august 2013, this administration was going to attack syria and give no-fly zones. we sat at the white house. there was no strategy. they did have an estimate o of e cause. mr. mcdonough, the chief of staff, said it would be over a billion dollars a month. i asked him how long it would take. he estimated 10 years. at a billion dollars a month and we had just shut down. there was no authorization to go over there. we are attacking a sovereign nation without an aumf. president obama went on to say there was a red line in syria uses chemical weapons. they used it. there was no follow-through. a failed to act. for president and john kerry both said that assad moscow. then they denied it. they didn't say that.
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the world's of the. john kerry said there was no diplomat solution to the chemical weapons problem in syria. yet two weeks later after he said that, russia joke in there, showed leadership and within two weeks there's an agreement to get rid of the chemical weapons. i find it interesting that we didn't think that could happen, yet russia brokered it and we wound up paying for it. the president said no boots on the ground multiple times, no boots on the ground, no boots on the ground. then we went with a $500 million train and equip and arm. we find out a year later that's a complete failure. they have trained possibly 40-50 but only five made it to the field of the cost of $50 million. that's a $10 million of fighter. it's got to be laughable, other than its reality and it's just bad form. and i guess my question is, why
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hasn't the president worked to great a safe zones, when especially the chairman of this committee, chairman royce and the ranking member asked for that four years ago. why has that not happened? >> because it's usually difficult, complex and speed okay i'm going to stop you dedication said earlier. it's complicated -- >> resource intensive. >> i want to add this because of what wanted you to bring out. it's complicated, expensive, very costly. how costly is it to have 4 million displaced refugees that have gone around the world that have disrupted, you know, the whole world as far as refugees just leaving there, 7.5 million displaced in syria? that's pretty costly to, isn't
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it? isn't that disrupted? >> it is costly and we're trying to contribute to alleviate that problem. but let me talk in more detail about some of these safe zones or exclusion zones. the department of defense has not proposed an option that does not have a very significant contribution investment of u.s. airpower. that airpower would be diverted from the fight against isil at the fight against isil, which is an extraordinarily virulent terrorist group is a threat to us and our allies and the neighbors. so that is the first priority. it is also extremely difficult to patrol and to protect these safe zones on the ground, that would require a very significant investment of ground forces of some sort. but the primary reason is the investment of airpower. >> i just, you know, if we're going to attack us we need to attack it. the lack of diplomatic effort
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even a hint of that over the last three years i have not seen it until russia steps in and russia but in 2000 troops, brings in tanks and all the armament and we respond with 50 ground troops when the president said no american troops on the ground. this is the beginning of an escalation. my question to both of you is, why should i or anybody on this committee or in congress support anything this administration attempts with such a poor strategy of winning this? the president doesn't even come out and acknowledged who we are fighting, isil, radical islamic jihad. they won't even acknowledge that, yet we will go out this and kind of do little effort to try to defeat isil. i think it's a joke. again, my question is why should i support anything this administration does in the middle east or syria, or even in the ukraine with the lack of strategy that i seek what you're talking about we've got to protect israel.
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but yet we have the iran nuclear deal that does anything but protect israel. and you know, why should i support this? anything they are doing. >> well, i guess the short answer, congressman, is that isil is a threat to us and to our european allies and to the neighbors in the region. and we are already seeing incursions by isil, pressure against jordan and pressure against saudi arabia. i think that's the short answer. you've asked a much broader question i think but i think that's the short answer to your question. >> if we are going do this, let's do it right and let's get a strategy let's make it count instead of just kind of playing around with the. i don't mean playing around because with troops on the ground and i'm sure if there on the ground they don't think they are playing. i yield back. >> without objection i'm pleased
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to recognize mr. fortenberry of nebraska, a former member of this committee who was remained engaged on these issues and particularly christians and other religious minorities in this region of the world. mr. fortenberry. >> thank you, mr. chairman. madam ambassador, welcome. i'm sorry i didn't have the benefit of doing this earlier conversation but i do want to convert -- divert to the question that you but i doubt. ambassador patterson, we met a number of years ago when george consulate in pakistan, a few days before it was an assassination or kidnapping attempt upon you. and infinite as i recall he went on to become ambassador in pakistan as well as in egypt. i just want to thank you for your many years of dedicated service in very difficult areas. i don't think without any interaction, ambassador nuland, but i appreciate both of your willingness to testify today. one of the great concern in the middle east is of this, and let
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me divert for a moment by telling a story. i happened to be in an audience with pope francis a little while back, and he was presented a small christian crucifix. it was won by a young syrian was captured by the jihadists, and he was told to convert. and he refused. and he chose his own ancient faith tradition, christianity, and he was beheaded. his mother was able to recover his body, and found across, and fled and made her way to austria where she settled as refugees. answer that means one of the person that i was within this audience was able to present that to pope francis. one of the more dramatic parts of this crisis that seems to come and go in regards to our attention is it is delivered, systematic attack on christians and other faith traditions,
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including easy these and other religious minorities. and i have the largest easy population in america where i live in lincoln nebraska. is of the genocide? >> i don't know the answer to that. i think that's a legal term. i think there will be some announcements on that very shortly. >> well, i would appreciate both of your willingness to engage robust on this topic. the reason is as the chairman other to we've introduced a resolution does call this genocide. while there are certain international legal implications from that, nonetheless elevated the plight of christians and other religious minorities in their own ancient homeland, including syria, where christians are about 10% of the population, raises the
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international consciousness and provides a gateway for further strategy around defense and security measures, as well as once all of this hopefully in the future stabilizes, reintegration of those populations back into their rightful homeland. this is a very important i think a gateway to use this resolution, for not only the discussion to elevate consciousness by taking a larger platform as how to stabilize these areas and demand that the rich diversity of religious tradition that's existed in these areas be allowed to not only returned but flourish as a part of any political or security summit movement forward. there's significant problems with his in iraq as well. we been able to form a new burgeoning relationship with the kurds who have been very respectful of religious plurality and have undertaken waves of immigration, or refugee populations, and absorb that as well as jordanians and the
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lebanese. this is very important component as we move forward and think through a strategy that actually brings about some stability and maybe a political settlement moving forward. in this regard there's another problem that i'd like to point out. it's my understanding we've only admitted 53 christians as refugees from the conflict in syria. that's just fortunate to the population size. can you give any perspective on that, please? >> my colleague was here with mr. rodriguez of the weeks ago to talk about refugee admission policy. and the numbers, i think we've admitted about, as of today, a little over 2000 syrians and we are planning to admit more of course. they have to be very strict vetting requirements and research into their particular circumstances and background. i don't have an answer why do
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christians are under represented. >> one of the challenges cushions are generally not in refugee camps, so they will be spread out through the population to whether it's in the basement of a relative or in some church basement or in some other circumstance versus cordoned into some definable entity or refugee camp i think it's part of the problem, but clearly this segment of syria is population is under great stress as are others. >> we end highly agree that these communities are under enormous stress, and we've been in close contact with them through the religious leaders, both in country and the religious leaders here in the u.s. and we are very mindful of the point you make that they have to be, that the most desirable outcome for them after thousands of years is that they be reintegrated into these countries and not dispersed.
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so we tried to work with these communities. we try to sustain them, but i will take your point back about the refugee admissions and get you an answer. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman, for accommodating me today. a pleasure to speak with you both. thank you. >> the chair thanks the gentleman and recognizes mr. dingell. >> thank you very much. i know you've been in it for a while and has over the white house with its use of compartments but if you want to try to come here. that's a much to ask questions but publicly called for both of you. you are two of the most capable people at the pleasure of dealing with any meeting, and hard-working and smart combination and all the nice things i can say about both of you. i just want to thank both of you for your service to our country. it really means a great deal and we can have people, your caliber and intellect and hard work, work ethic, working for the
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united states of america. i just wanted to thank you. i've treasured the times through the years that i've had the opportunity to speak with both of you in person, on the telephone, and everything else. such as thank you. i'm sure everything has been covered and i will read the scripts very, very carefully. neither one of you has ever said no to me when it needed to meet with you at something. so just a very great bipartisan thank you to both of you. >> the chair thanks the gentleman. the chair would also like to thank the ambassadors for being here. we know you were sent on a tough mission, and please don't take any other remarks from the dais here as personal. we have the charge of oversight and to get answers on behalf of our constituents. as you can tell many of us on both sides of the oliver frustrated with the circumstance. i have one question before you pack it all. i think a lot of people watch what's happening, that they don't know the answer to this.
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ambassador patterson, i think you were asked earlier about the refugee flow into europe and why some of the arab countries were nothing more except for paying to help ameliorate that. and i think the senseless why aren't they taking, why aren't they taking some of our many of these refugees. i think your answer was they are very different societies and they don't accept, so what is so forth. with all due respect it seems to me europe is a very different society, then arabi. do we have no plan? do we have no interest in purging, pressuring and cajoling our arab partners, so to speak him in the region bordering syria, particularly, to take any of these refugees or do anything more than have them move lock, stock and barrel across seas, dangerous journeys across land imbalance and colin everything, cultural difference for them into europe? is there no other effort in that
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regard? >> currently, mr. chairman, there are efforts to encourage these countries to take in more refugees. it's not that hundreds of thousands of syrians don't live in these countries. i think the issue for these countries is that they have a number of them have tiny, domestic populations, and population of foreigners, guest workers that are in some cases eight, 10 times the local population. so they are very reluctant to take an additional refugees. >> but isn't that a similar circumstance in many european countries, the smaller ones, the same exact circumstance is present at that moment? they are small populations currently under being overrun, their services are being overrun by people of a completely different culture speak with butter we have encouraged the gulf countries to take in more refugees and again we've encouraged him to give generously to the u.n. --
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>> is there any plan for more encouragement like subtle pressure may be, diplomatic pressure, economic pressure, pressure to alleviate the situation? it seems fantastic too many of us that they are happy to help watch this info of humanity into europe a geek almost virtually none of it in themselves. i know some of the countries in the region have but some have not. >> jordan and lebanon and turkey have taken billions of these refugees. >> right, but there's others that border that have not taken. >> yes. and the other thing, i think the phenomenon we're seeing at this time it is that most of them prefer to join family members have gone to these other countries. i actually do not think there's been such a draw for these refugees to resettle in the gulf. again, there are hundreds of thousands of -- >> it did not welcome in the gulf and welcomed in europe after leaving, once you decide to leave everything, i would
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imagine he would go where you feel more welcomed. but if you're not welcomed at all in the neighboring countries you will choose the best of your options, i would imagine. that's just a thought. i think a lot of americans ask the questions so i appreciate her and she. i the british age would do as much is good to encourage our partners and allies in the region to do more than what they are doing in regard to physically taking those refugees. i thank you. at this time this hearing is adjourned. [inaudible conversations] >> c-span has the best access to congress get watch live coverage of the house on c-span and the sin on c-span2. watch us online or on your phone at c-span.org. the sunlight anytime on our c-span radio that.
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it best access from behind the scenes by following c-span and our capitol hill reporter greg kaplan on twitter. stay with c-span, c-span radio and c-span.org for your best access to congress your. >> a signature feature of c-span2's booktv as our coverage of book fairs and festivals from across the country with a nonfiction author talks, interviews and call-in segments.
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>> now a look at muslim-american voters in the 2016 elections. panelists discuss what issues motivate the muslim community in efforts to engage muslim-americans in politics. this hour and half event was cohosted by the muslim public affairs council and the new america foundation. >> my name is haroon moghul. there's no introduction from its i was told i could introduce myself, which was an honor and a
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dangerous constitution by mpac. i wanted to think of when are coming. after i left they move their headquarters which is not anyway a reflection on my contribution to america. i also want to thank mpac. i'm a lifelong lakers fan and mpac has flown into los angeles at their expense. so that means a lot to me. los angeles is my mecca. we are here to discuss the mexican foreign policy agenda of the american muslim community. were the only demographic that has been publicly saluted from high office by a leading presidential candidate. we are one of the only demographics whose very name is shorthand for terrorist and were probably the only demographic whose identity is regulate an interrogator day in and day out over whether it is at all compatible with american values why did you. that despite the fact we're now -- so things are difficult for me.
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i was hoping i was the first person debate a president joe. i don't know, just got here but hopefully. i am. so finally in the lead. today's panel is different from the previous one. the previous panels house rules help reduce was open to media. you're muslim you know what it's like to be reported. just behave like you normally would anyway. but there is media and i was actually told to let you immediate in the bag is open and eager to speak to people after the panel if there's anything you would like to contribute or add or provide to the conversation. basically i will introduce each of our four amazing panelists at each will have about five minutes to make an opening presentation and then the whole point of this is for you to ask questions. this is a panel whose whole purpose is to get us talking about our domestic and foreign policy agenda in our communities and talk about her record in terms of upcoming election, the 2016 election, what we're going
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to do about it and wher we're gg to go as a community. so by all means think up questions, answer questions, engage debate. see this as an opportunity, think through outside with a very smart people in this room what we can do, what we should do and what we shouldn't do. so beginning, starting on the left, alex cole is a vegetable at monitor 36 and brings a decade of strategies for high profile clients atlanta become government and business. i'm going to give a brief bio because i know we're running on time. i didn't get any bias so it's okay. imf representative of the whole empire. malik mujahid is present of sound vision, the producer of adams world. a.j. durrani, your bio -- my
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apologies. a.j. durrani, we didn't lose your come as co-chairman of emerge u.s.a. empower and motivate educating resourceful grass-roots entities. a national nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational organization established to improve and increase political awareness and under wraps and communities especially the muslim arab and south asian populations. and, finally, fahmy hudome, expert in middle eastern and north african affairs with more than 25 years of legal and public policy experience including service and use government associate deputy secretary of energy and counsel to the kind senator spencer abraham, republican from michigan. please give them a round to the amazing battle. [applause] and we'll start with alex who has a presentation and then we will move on from there, figured. >> i promise this is a short presentation, three slides. i spoke at this forum last year. was anybody in the audience it
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was here for that? oh, good. i was worried was going to be three quarters of the river i actually brought different material this time from a really expensive research project that i did about a year or two ago on how to improve perceptions of american muslims. we're talking elections, talking about policy reforms, one important thing to keep in mind, policy is born of perceptions of people. is fundamentally a group of people is viewed positively, the policies that are created in fact a group of people are going to be much more sympathetic to its interest. think of groups of people that are revered in american society and the policy outcomes of those groups experiences are much better than those where the group is fundamentally viewed more negatively. and, unfortunately, american muslims are viewed relatively or
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viewed very negatively. actually we did a thermometer poll saying, listing off a dozen different groups of people in america and asking people how do you feel towards these different groups of people. and, unfortunately, american muslims ranked last under every other religion in america, under other groups that are sometimes viewed negatively by latinos and so what do we do about it. two things. first went to get real about understand what is the problem. what does the audience think, what do americans think and policymakers think that drive those negative stereotypes, thee drive is negative perceptions. second lien to test different messages that will address those negative perceptions. so first going to what is the problem. this is one of the problems. two-thirds of broadcast news media in america associates muslims and islam with extremism
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and terrorism. yes, i'm going to pile on with ben carson and marco rubio and donald trump and criticize media as a it's their fault for everything. in this situation what is so damaging about negative media coverage, most americans don't know a muslim. and in the absence of personal experience, media fills that void. so stereotypes portrayed by the media, or trade by hollywood i where people walk away with. so what do we do about it? first, to address encourageencourage ment, i want to bring to this but the question has come up many times before in forums like this people, should we even respond when the kennedy is unfairly accused of being involved in terrorism? and my emphatic response is we have to.
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the audience already believes that. so if we ignore it they are going to continue to believe it. and that may not be fair, but if one to change the audience's mind, that's what we have to do. i'm jumping your to the answers. we tested a bunch of different messages to try to make americans feel more positively towards american muslims, vis-à-vis terrorism. virtually to messages we cover most effective when you're trying to do that. both of them work because both of them focus on security. too often the message that people will use is we need, kind of a kumbaya message, we need to embrace everybody in america and many to preserve civil liberties and that's what he can't have overly aggressive surveillance policies that target this community of people. that falls flat if it doesn't address the, audience realistic
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concern about terrorism and own safety. we are in a better place when we you've messages like this. the first one here, we are stronger and safer together in the face of a threat when we stick together. a job for americans that is to remain united. that means not targeting innocent americans just because they are muslim. what that is doing is saying we shouldn't single out a single group of people in american society because that makes us less safe. we are stronger together. see how different that is from we should just single out a group of people in american society because that's against the constitution. people are not thinking about constitution. they are thinking about safety. that's where we have to meet them. another one that truly effective is actually offering an alternative solution to survey the and entire communities were any other kind of overly heavy-handed tactic that you might use against an entire
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community of people. we should target terrorist based on evidence, not entire group of people based on their religion. why does that work? it's intuitive, it makes sense. should we have a scattershot approach and surveil millions of people, or should we only go after those who the evidence tells us are probably guilty? that just makes more sense and it makes no sense insurance that is a more effective way to get to the security outcome that we want. so when engaging in this conversation when it's necessary, those are two messages that are highly effective. so last point. so that's how we counter the negative. you also cannot the negative by promoting the positive. fundamentally what is the best way to tell the american muslim story that will fundamentally make people better about the entire committee? we in a series of more than a
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dozen focus grips around the country tested this question, gave participants a whole bunch of different stories about american muslims as an isolated the elements of the stories that seem to engender the most positive feeling. and we found the most effective ones are stories we talk about a person's heritage, the contribution that they are making to society and where you invoke a shared value. and when you skip any of those things, the story in total is not as effective. i won't dwell on the first one. so when you are doing focus groups with people on a topic like immigration and how people feel toward latinos, which are sort of central character in the debate over immigration policies, everybody has a story at least a stereotype and had a white latinos come to america.
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is erica better life for the family. it's actually the american immigrant journey golden dream story. it's actually very positive and it's one of the most effective messages that immigration reform community has. the challenge here when we in focus groups show people pictures of muslims and said, why did this person come to america? they are like i have no idea. and then when we press them there like i don't know if they came to to make a better life for the family or if they can get to carry out a terrorist act. in a situation where you don't have some kind of personal experience, you fill up with whatever the need is an. saying. so if the media sunday stories of muslim equals extremists, that's how the story gets populated. but we found, the good thing is that a blank slate. if you see this person came to america because they're making a better life for their family, or shocker, they were born in
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america, they were born in columbus, ohio, that really rocks people in the head. that challenges, that populates the little blank slate with something positive. so that's an essential element of the story if you can incorporate into a contribution that person is making to american society, or the doctor, that's helpful. and then finally invoke some shared value. the other undercurrent i did we talk too much about is concerned that muslims and american muslims are culturally or from a value perspective or and other. so before, evoking american values that they also believe, it helps people understand that this is a community of people that actually fundamentally share their same values with. so that was a whirlwind tour of a couple thoughts on how to fundamentally improve the way people perceive american muslims
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which will help to pave the way for the kinds of electoral outcomes that we want and the kinds of policy outcomes that we want. >> tanker, alex. -- thank you, alex. >> maliki? >> in the name of god, most personal, merciful giving. thank you so much for inviting this opportunity. actually about to depart of, some thoughts and so many ideas inspired by all the great speakers. this is the topic given to me than what does effective american muslim actually look like? and i chose three different
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examples. one is 1990s, one in 2005, and one on 2015. how many of you know that muslims -- [inaudible] have you heard this anywhere? it was part of the struggle. i forgive those who were not born here until 1995 for something. so this was the shape. well, going back a little bit the campaign was funded by mosques. the lady sitting over there at islamic foundation, a broad mosque of chicago together. committed $50,000 for this campaign. was started boston task force which was based in sound vision and we aligned with ourselves with national organization of women, now come and we have demonstrations in 100 cities.
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we have lobbied the congress. we got house as well as senate to approve that. then it went to the united nations. first time in human history. not in general convention one, not in general convention to. post first time in human history united nations said rape should role-play but it went on for for the struggle. total cost $50,000. second, i will take you to program in olympic of the became the first state required by law to cover all young people under 18 with health coverage. that campaign was consumed by the organization which is coalition of -- edward we cannot power which thanks to the interaction, catholics and muslims with a core group but there were other regions and labor unions.
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united power, and they went to illinois general assembly, then governor signed that and all kids covered program total cost of doing that $10,000. when mosques came together, working in alignment with other groups. i'll give you one more example, which is current of this year. i work on different gaza. i've not found because more difficult to work on than burma. if it's not on tv it doesn't exist. they say how do we do that? and again it was the mosques which came forward who asked to do something be done on this particular issue. well, i wish you can cooperate a little more.
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anyway, if they can come through that's great otherwise i will continue without that. thank you. okay, so again it was the chicago muslim community which got together, provided initial funding and we talked since it's on tv how do we handle that? one other thing which we did was that we went and brought, provided depth to it at conference at harvard university, yale, funded school of economics event oslo at noble peace institute. we got a conference sponsored by the burmese task force and then seven and noble laureates, nobel peace laureates, textbook case of genocide. it's an ongoing effort. the point i'm trying to make
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your, first element is a mosque. more and more mosques in more and more cities are open for civic engagement. once they understand what your agenda, it's not broad, it's not vague. they can figure out in 10 minute board meeting what are the action items. at the end of the income they will move forward with it. so if election the elections arg we need to think of mosques in america more like black churches. what would be the moment without black churches? many other black churches actually -- certification 501(c)(3)s. just to maintain their independents. but even 80% of all political activism can be done with 501(c)(3). so considering mosques as an important variable, not something which we always stereotype, well, i'm a person
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who has been banned by giving -- a couple of mosques because it of mosques because in my view, so i understand that all mosques are the same. but this is a major unit of activism. that's how community comes to no what are the current issues. this is what they're upset about. 32 states have -- [inaudible] and these bills don't come one you. they continuously, year after -- i chaired the committee. i picked up a phone call to the local imam, thank you so much for brochures on sharia. i so what are you talking about? didn't have the campaign four years ago? he said no, we have had that campaign every year since the ground zero mosque or so each of these states have campaigned year after year after year. that's what mosques are worded of the there also were devout
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hundred attacks. so islamophobia -- and how we can translate that into a activism in future and that's where i will conclude. their constant about thei that t they are not, they're sick and tired of condemning terrorism five times a day. [inaudible] so they're sick and tired of the come looking for people, honest voices. more and more people are doing that. imams have signed a statement of the. islamophobia, you've engagement and radicalization, these are serious concerns, their conversation in the bold and figure what they can do looking for the sources. and so does our constitution engagement.
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i think you understand a mosque vocabulary, talk about what islamophobia is doing to mosque, then translate that that is directly connected to the radicalization. so if america understand the vocabulary of the national security, mosques understand the vocabulary of civil right and what's happening to them. if you can connect that i think there will be greater opportunity for organizations like mpac and other entities to engage broader level of muslim communities for a more successful program. thank you. [applause] >> a.j. durrani. >> the. [speaking in native tongue] good afternoon which and gentlemen.
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the topic of going to talk about this best practice on strategizing priorities come an agenda moving forward with the 2016 elections. additionally, appropriate because the organization that i belong to which i'm co-chairmen emerge u.s.a. is involved engagement and participation. the pew survey done a few years ago identified muslims and in general asians as being in the united states among the most affluent and the most educated communities. get one thing that distinguishes them from other similar communities is this almost apathy toward political involvement. political involvement is not just voting. it is engagement. and participation are that's basic of what i'm could be talking to we talk to islamophobia. a week ago today there was an election in houston. like many other places, there was a muslim or a foundation also the president of the islamic society centers around for control for the city of
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houston, second highest position after the mayor of the fourth largest city. unfortunately, without success so, lost by a narrow margin but the one thing during that election was nobody identified in as a muslim and said if you like tim, sharia will be the law or sharia is going to run a project is obviously sharia can do everything in all parts of the united states. and the reason is engagement. the muslims of houston at least are no longer identified as terrorists. and maybe the doctor next door. they may be but a professor at the university or then maybe that job lady at the election booth to ask can i see your papers, please? that is where my stories are stories that i'm going to go forward. i had a bunch of graphs but i will go fast. so what is our strategy for our strategy for engagement is educating the community. if you just a few to go to work,
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nobody does. but we engaged the committee, informed, educated and about engagement and the american political spectrum, they basically come out to vote. we provide a whole bunch of workshops and i will go over with you in more detail about what kind of you is to engage them and brought them to ask and to become a voter. because they are going talk with the agenda for 2016 which emerges -- as i will show you how muslims are scattered throughout the united states but were also concentrated in some areas strategically in the swing states that could potentially be the difference for the upcoming elections are so what is emergent? is a 501(c)(3) nonpartisan nonprofit organization and we've all been introduced what alphabet stands for but emerge also has a 501(c)(4) advocacy entity as well as political
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action committee so we span the breadth of political involvement. is not a new organization. we are 10 years old and we have offices in several cities, some of the critical states. were three offices in florida, office in houston, an office in new york and in philadelphia, an office in dearborn, michigan, and we shall hopefully have an office in columbus, ohio, in 2016 as well as california and new jersey. there are four areas we focus on the emerging waters which is educating waters, didn't understand why support to get involved in the american political spectrum. emerging participation is involving and engaging in the political parties, major political parties. without the other show it's difficult to say that you're part of the american political spectrum. it's a youth program. we have over 200 young people who have graduated from our programs and we look at the
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muslim community is more like a barbell in the united states, old guys like the guy who is to if you and the younger people. and yet for the younger people for the basic immediate, social media, they are not getting information off of the majority of the other folks, regular american process of engagement does not work with them. flashy male avatar television programs do not work for jeff to contact him, approach them and they really understand the that's we have the emerging data program for them. so what our strategy? 501(c)(3) engages in education. through our emerging leaders program with young people who are informed about politics and the web the outreach. interest in we vibrate in time one hour on several radio stations, chinese radio stations, bangladesh radio stations and we invite
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candidates to come. and by that the committee understands there's an election afoot and the come out in larger numbers. would also take out newspaper ads in the newspaper. we also get involved in leadership in the political structure which is how do you get rid of the republican and democratic parties so they understand the muslims and south asian communities and asian communities have a say? what our challenges and that every? again, apathy, funding to a lot of people as we found out to get anything done you need money. not just to give the candidates but also to higher staff so we can get the work done. of course, we just cannot get excited every four years and say this is the time we need to work. we need to work every year and that's why we offices in several other states that i mentioned. the advocacy part is to promote those areas we are interested in like a mobilization against
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anti-sharia legislature in many states. and floored it comes up every and every because of our collaboration with the political parties over there, we been able to beat it down. we support mainstream legislation. because muslims cannot be identified only as a single factor community, surveillance, terrorism. we need say yes, we are part of education, health care and so on. and also we do point identified in the muslim committee what are the important areas we wanted to focus on. for the political action committees, all participants are local. we get the two candidates for like-minded. we participate heavily in local races. some pictures all our involvement in going to go a little faster as my time is short. so who governs this? this is part of our political education. we all think the presidential election but no, if there's a sticker but, city government, county government, local districts will vote.
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when you look at the ballot in any major city there are like 50 people who vote for and at least one or two you'll have interest and that's the education we get to people. the other thing is elections are not only pashtun that our primaries that take place. the voting percentage is pretty low, 10% or less. if we can mobilize people and get them to vote in the primaries, we can elect the primary in november so primaries do better. here's a newspaper added that we took before the election. we found and we take ads in ethnic newspapers at a far larger impact than if we had bought time on television. the last part is party organization if you don't get involved in parties we really cannot get our candidates to become viable nominees. so we identified the structure getting people elected and also the structure of getting delegates.
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one thing that was not mentioned, i'm one of what they called -- democratic party, elected to the democratic party out of about 200,000 workers within the area. i'm not just a muslim candidate who happens represent a muslim voters. i represent the democratic part in the area. this is a ballot in the last election those things that are circled in red are muslim candidates running. over the last three presidential cycles the muslims and the democrat party have a more national delegates from texas than any other state. or roadmap for 2016 is a swing state strategy.
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our dialogue with national campaigns and the element of local leaders who can work within the state rather than central organization telling them what to do. our demographics is were we focus on areas where muslims are in critical mass, and we have recently acquired a list of non-muslim, of muslims who are nonvoters, wretched citizens but have not registered to vote yet. then boots on the ground basically this you hire people. this is a map right now public the presidential election looks like the we expect the democrats have about 237 quote-unquote electoral votes, republicans about to under six. of course, california and new york are blue states for democrats. texas and large estate for the republicans but there are other states like florida and others
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that have come and ohio where we have come in virginia where we have muslims who can have an impact on the upcoming election. this is a map of harris county, the fourth largest county in the united states. the red in 1980. look at how the map has changed over the last 30 years. this is what it looks right now. if we focus on areas whether a muslim concentrations we can have a say like would have in houston and that's our strategy. this is over the last several presidential elections. we have moved from where we are voting two to one for the republican against clinton when he won his election to president lee right now where to do when voting for the democrats. so the asian american as well as -- not pushing the democratic
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