tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN April 4, 2016 8:30am-10:31am EDT
couldn't pull a signal right before a marquee event such as the super bowl or the oscars or something high profile, march madness, for instance, and other sensible ideas to create greater balance and get consumers out of the middle of this negotiation. so that's a big one that we have talked about, and we'll continue to talk about it until we get the problem fixed. >> host: does retrans keep you up at night sometimes? >> guest: yes. >> host: why? >> guest: well, because we have absolutely no leverage when it comes to a broadcast television network. there is no leverage. a good friend of mine summed it up in this way, we pretend to negotiate. we go back and forth a few times, but eventually they just say this is it, take it or leave it. so it does keep me up at night. not because of the cost or because of the associations, but because of the impact i know it will have on my customers when, you know, they wake up on january 1st and a television station is missing, and i have
no option to negotiate with another station of the same network because of the little individual fiefdoms that have been created by the broadcast networks. >> host: do you foresee a day when mctv is simply an isp? >> guest: boy, you know, i'm proud to say our third generation leadership is installed at mv tv now. my -- mvtv now. my daughter joined us a couple years ago. i think that's a problem she'll have to deal with, but i don't think that'll happen probably during my end tenure or lifetime. >> host: bob gessner, matt polka of the american cable association, this has been "the communicators" on c-span. >> guest: thanks, peter. >> c-span, created by america's cable companies 35 years ago and brought to you as a public service by your local cable or
satellite provider. >> today the american enterprise institute and the markel foundation host a discussion on expanding opportunities in the digital economy. that's live at 1:30 p.m. eastern. and the senate returns at 3 p.m. for general speeches, at 5 debate begins to combat the theft of corporate trade secrets. a final vote on the bill is set for 5:30 p.m. see both here on c-span2. >> this week on c-span, the supreme court cases that shaped our history come to life with the c-span series, "landmark cases: historic supreme court decisions." our 12-part series explores constitutional dramas behind some of the most significant decisions in american history. >> this is a story and a case about presidential power and its
limits during times of war. and it puts before the court central themes about the conditions under which presidents during times of emergency can do things that may not be expressly stated in the constitution and the limits that congress and the counts can place on it. >> chief justice rehnquist in miranda, he said as you did, the case has come to be accepted by the culture. how many cases can we say about that? >> it was a sweeping decision, it isolated the u.s. as only one of four nations of 195 across the globe that allow abortions, and yet it has not settled the issue at all. >> and tonight we'll look at youngstown sheet and tube company v. sawyer that curbed presidential executive powers stating it was unconstitution aal for president truman to seize control of steel mills during the korean war because the move was not authorized by congress. watch landmark cases tonight at 10 eastern on c-span and c-span.org.
>> next, a discussion on nuclear security with california governor jerry brown. after that, remarks by the first lady of afghanistan. then a forum on syrian president bashar al assad and his future as leader of that country. >> now, an atlantic council forum on nuclear security with california governor jerry brown and former secretary of defense william perry. mr. perry says that the threat of a nuclear catastrophe is greater than it was during the cold war. governor brown called for more public awareness about the threat of nuclear weapons. this is an hour and 25 minutes. >> good afternoon, everyone, welcome.
i'm barry pavel, director of the brent scowcroft center on international security, and we're to horned and -- honored and thrilled to be here for a conversation with two very, very gushed guests -- distinguished guests, california governor jerry brown and former secretary of defense william perry x. they'll engage in a discussion on reducing the threats posed by nuclear weapons. i'd love to thank governor brown and first lady ann gus brown and secretary perry, and my colleagues and the plowshares fund, thank you so much for partnering with us on this event, and the honorable jan lodal who's a board director here and former president of the atlantic council. he'll take the stage shortly to provide introductory remarks and other atlantic council board directors and all of you here today, thank you. this is, obviously, a very timely topic as the 2016 nuclear security summit kicks off a few blocks from here. i assume none of you had traffic
problems or anything getting here. [laughter] but nonetheless, a vitally important set of topics that in particular that numerous administrations but in particular this administration has been quite focused on for quite a while and vitally important in today's context of increasing challenges from a variety of state actors and nonstate actors around the world. realizing greater nuclear security is the issue at hand for the dozens of international leaders in washington today and tomorrow, for the fourth and almost certainly final summit of its kind in this administration, the 2016 summit will include a dedicated session on reducing the threat that nonstate actors like isis could acquire and use nuclear materials might pose. we can only imagine the horrific effect of introducing nuclear materials or weapons into the types of attacks that we've recently witnessed in brussels, in istanbul, in paris, etc.
governor brown and secretary perry recognize the grave danger posed to all nations by actors threatening to acquire and use nuclear or materials, and they are concerned with the same questions as the heads of state at today's summit. they're here today to discuss how to address these problems after the conclusion of the 2016 summit. what are the opportunities to build off of, and what key areas have the summits, could the summits have done more work, what are only new frameworks, new mechanisms, new approaches that can better secure the world against nuclear weapons? and i have to say coming as the obama administration was coming in, this was a very significant agenda item even before inauguration by this administration and having run the nuclear posture review when i was at the national security council in 2009-2010, this issue had the most prominence i've seen in our government in such strategic reviews for quite a long time.
now let me turn to introducing our speakers briefly. a mathematician by education, it's one of the few things i share with secretary perry -- [laughter] secretary perry has priestly served as the -- previously served as the undersecretary of research and engineering, as deputy secretary of defense and, of course, as the 19th secretary of defense for the united states. he's now the michael and barbara -- [inaudible] professor emeritus at stanford university, a senior fellow, director of the preventative defense project and many, many, many other endeavors that secretary perry engages on. governor brown is a native of san francisco, is currently serving a historic fourth term as governor of california. he previously served in a variety of positions from trustee for the los angeles college district to california secretary of state to mayor of oakland to california attorney general, and the list goes on and on. a number of accomplishments in all of those areas which you'll see in your biographies that you
have in the materials today. before their reremarks the honorable jan lodal will provide an enter duction. he served -- introduction. he served as president at the council from 2005-'6. he's currently a member of the board of directors and a distinguished fellow with the atlantic council and chairman of lodal and company. he served also in a variety of positions from serving henry kissinger on the national security council to the principal deputy undersecretary of defense for policy, the number two person in policy in the clinton administration and a number of other positions, as i said. this is a public event, as i mentioned. we're all tweeting. i'll be tweeting. [laughter] when i'm not asking questions. the hashtag is a cdefense, and the account had been at acscowcroft. without further ado, please let me welcome jan lodal to the stage. [applause] >> thanks, barry. i just want briefly to say a few more things about our two
speakers that might not be so obvious and might not be in their biographies. you know with, even i when i first saw this, i thought, jerry brown's coming here on a nuclear theme, on the day of the nuclear summit. this is terrific. maybe he'll go to the nuclear summit and pick up it energy for us today. and it really is very, very fortunate for us to have him involved in this issue, because he has been involved in this issue for his entire life and his entire career. he's made it very clear that he sees this issue along with climate change as being perhaps the two most important existential issues that mankind faces. and bill perry has had exactly the same path in his life. he has recently written a wonderful memoir called "my journey at the nuclear brink," and in this memoir he states that he has seen lout his whole career the -- throughout his whole career the challenge of
nuclear weapons as his greatest challenge and what he has most focused on. he's put almost his entire focus on this particular issue. so so we have two gentlemen here who have a lifetime of experience of dealing with this. governor brown has particularly focused on how to get the public to understand it and to appreciate it and get more public involvement. dr. perry has focused on that significantly, particularly with a focus on young people and bringing them to understand it better. he's had a distinguished career in academia. he's taught many of us what we know about this subject and many others as well and tried to spread the knowledge more widely within the academic community as well. governor, i think governor brown, of course, has not shied away from working on trying to solve the problems that he sees, and he's done things that make it clear to people how dramatic these problems are.
when california faced its water crisis more than a year ago, rather than just complaining about it and whining and so forth, he he immediately put in place a 25% reduction. everyone said it wouldn't work and, in fact, it did work. and he knew that it was going to work. this is the kind of energy that we all hope to see put on the nuclear problem as we go forward. the same thing is true about dr. perry. he has for many years focused on the issue at it core and, of course, with secretary schultz and senator nunn and secretary perry, the four of them wrote path-breaking editorial near the beginning of the obama administration calling for an end to nuclear weapons and and a world without nuclear weapons which really changed people's way of thinking altogether about this subject. so it's my honor to turn the
floor over to dr. perry who will make some comments to you, and after that governor brown, and then we'll open it up for, as barry said, for a open discussion. thank you very much. bill. [applause] >> thank you very much, jan. well, i am a child of the cold war. as are some of the rest of you in this audience today. and as such, i've always had a deep concern about nuclear issues. about the danger we faced of a nuclear catastrophe during the cold war. but my main message to you today is that the danger of a nuclear catastrophe today, i believe, is greater than it was during the cold war. greater than during the cold
war. that's my first message. the second message is that i believe our public, if that's true, our public is generally unaware of that. they are blissfully unaware of that. consequently, the policies that this country follows are in no ways commensurate with the danger. and so i see my job as trying to educate the public on this issue which is a huge task but, nevertheless, that's what i am undertaking. now, to make my point to this sophisticated audience, let me explain briefly why i made that first statement, why i think the dangers are today greater than during the cold war. so i'll compare them during the cold war. it's hard to do it without looking at the different ways which a nuclear catastrophe could occur. during the cold war, we believed
that we were in danger of what we called a b.o.o.b., a bolt out of the blue, a surprise strike. in retrospect, it seems that danger was greatly overstated. but whether it was real or whether it was not real, it was absolutely clear that our policies were driven by that belief. it's the primary reason why we ended up with 70,000 nuclear weapons, just driven by the brief there was going to be a surprise attack, and we had to prepare for it. whether or not that was true, it was certainly true that there was a great danger we would run boo a war by miscalculation and, certainly, the cuban missile crisis was a primary example of
that where we almost did blunder into nuclear war by miscalculation. at the time i believe we avoided a nuclear catastrophe more by good luck than by good management. and everything i've learned since then has only confirmed my view that is true. beyond miscalculation, we all during the cold war were -- [inaudible] of nuclear war being caused by accident. the most obvious was through a false alarm. and we had at least three false alarms in the united states that i'm personally ware of. i don't know -- aware of. i don't know how many there might have been in the soviet union. one of these false alarms i personally participated in, and i got a call from the watch
office of the nord american defense command, woke me up from a sound sleep, telling me -- he started his conversation by telling me that his computers were showing 200 icbms on the way from the soviet union to the united states. now, an event like that is, gets your attention -- [laughter] and i've never really forgotten that morning. of course, it was a false alarm. why was he calling me? i was at the time undersecretary of defense for engineering -- why would he be calling me? he knew he had to brief the president in the morning, and he wanted to figure out what the hell had gone wrong with his computers, and he was hoping i could help him figure that out. i just say i was not able to over the phone that night, it took us two days to discover it was human error, that the sergeant coming on watch that day put wrong tape into the computer. he put a training tape into the computer. that's a real story.
so during the cold or war, we -- cold war, we had the real dangers of war by miscalculation or a war by accident. and i aearth we still have -- assert we with still are those dangers today. a miscalculation we don't have a cuban missile crisis, but we have ukraine, and we have potentially have the baltics. if there is a russian incursion into the baltics, god hope that doesn't hope, but if there's a russian incurse into the -- incursion into the baltics comparable to what they had in ukraine, that would bring nato and russian troops into some sort of military conflict. the danger then to a nuclear escalation is very real if that happens. we also have the danger still of a false alarm. what sets the conditions for a false alarm in the cold war is we had a policy known as launch
on warning. we still have a policy of launch on warning. whether or not a false alarm would lead to a launch depends on many factors, i be mostly -- but mostly i would say it depends on what i would call context. the reason the three false alarms during the cold war did not result in a launch was context. nothing was going on at that time to suggest that there would be an attack. had any of those false alarms occurred during the cuban missile crisis, for example, or during the mideast crisis we had, it might have been a very different story. so technically, the launch on warning till could happen -- still could happen. what about context? well, i assert the context today about as bad as it was during the cold war. what context am i talking about? let me just give you a few examples. first of all, russia has
conspicuously dropped the no first use policy and sort of suggested that nuclear weapons would be their weapon of choice if they were faced with some sort of a military crisis. i think more importantly, they are now undertaking a major rebuild of the their nuclear arsenal, a major rebuild, well advanced in it, and publicly declaring it, almost flaunting it. i have no doubt that the united states is going to follow suit in that, and we have another nuclear arms race underway comparable to the one we had during the cold war. i'll have more to say about that, but that's context that i'm talking about now. and the third part of the context is the rhetoric. mostly in this case one-sided, mostly russia to the united states but not entirely. i look, for example, to the head of russian media stating publicly that russia's the only nation that can turn the united
states into radioactive ash. now, that is, obviously, true. the question is why would the head of russian media think that was a good thing to state publicly? i look to the leaked announcement about the amazing robotic submarine that they have and all the catastrophes that it was going to be able to inflict on the united states. and perhaps most dramatically, the russian scientist who suggested wouldn't it be interesting if they dropped a nuclear bomb on yellowstone? why on yellowstone? because there's a huge dormant volcano which if it erupted could cause immense damage. so his brilliant idea was to use a nuclear bomb to trigger that volcano know and, thereby, destroy the united states. now, this, i believe, is bluster. simply bluster. the question though is why does the russian government believe it is reasonable to encourage such bluster? that's the context i'm talking about. and the context is something
that is very serious. we need to be concerned about it. let me go on then to the accidental nuclear war. as i said, we still have the launch on warniing we still have the context we need to be concerned about today just as during the cold war. to be clear, i think the danger of a nuclear war by accident or by miscalculation is lower today than it was during the cold war. happily. but beyond that, we have two new possibilities of a nuclear war which did not exist during the cold war. one of them, obviously, is nuclear terrorism which i place as a very high probability sometime in the next couple of years. it is imply an event waiting to happen.
and so the threat real in the sense we are living on borrowed time. and the threat is much, much more consequential than most people understand. people think of it as or the of a big 9/11. big is not quite the right term. it's two orders of magnitude more consequential than 9/11. and beyond the fatalities or casualties that would occur from it, there are the social, the economic and the political consequences which should be very considerable. in the preface to my book, i lay out what i call my nuclear nightmare, and i imagine a nuclear terror attack in washington. just a few blocks from where we're sitting. and i imagine the consequences. the political -- not just the casualtieses, but the political consequences, and they're really astounding. so i would call that to your attention.
i've also prepared a little five minute video imagining that scenario unfolding which i call to your attention if you look on our web site. you'll see that video, and i encourage you to do that. besides the possibility of nuclear terrorism today which, i said, is new and different from the cold war, there's the problem of a regional nuclear catastrophe. the most obvious example being a war between india and pakistan which escalates into a nuclear war. that is all too ez easy to imagine. and the consequences of a nuclear war between india and pakistan besides causing tens of millions of deaths in india and pakistan, the consequences truly would be worldwide including the possibility of a nuclear winter effect which could affect the whole planet. beyond the india/pakistan, there's the always-present worry
about what in the world is north korea doing and what might they do in the future. again, their rhetoric is just off the scale. this was only a month or so ago they were promising to drop nuclear bombs on the united states. again, a lot of that is bluster, but we should not underestimate the potential of north korea or india and pakistan blundering into a nuclear war which we would be, which we would suffer significantly. so those are, that's context in which i make my comment which i repeat now which is the possibility of a nuclear catastrophe today is really greater than it was during the cold war. but we are supremely and blissfully unaware of that. that's why i feel particular responsibility to try to educate the public on this issue.
many other people in this room have that same responsibility. joe in particular through the plowshares has worked diligently and effectively in that area. a question, of course, what should we do about all of this aside from just trying to sound the alarm? and i suggest a few specific actions which we should be thinking about. one of them and fundamentally is to try to deal with this context problem. and nothing can be done in that area unless we seriously reengage russia. at the highest political levels. president to president. i'm urging that on our own president to date without success, we're urging it on the russian president, everything we can do to try to promote this idea that until our two presidents reengage at least on the issue of nuclear dangers, we're not going to change that context.
we have to provide the conditions which set the stage where the rhetoric will be toned down. now, secondly, i think we should be rethinking the starting of a new nuclear arms race. you know, i lived through the one during the cold war, and i think one many this century, one in a lifetime is quite enough. and particularly in a modest way i propose one action we could take which is in our own reconsideration of rebuilding our cold war nuclear arsenal as we decide to omit the one element of the triad which i think is most dangerous which is icbms. i argue two points. first of all, that we have sufficient, more than sufficient deterrent capability between our submarine forces and our bomber forces. and secondly, the icbm forces have one peculiar quality and
not to the other two, which is their susceptibility to false alarm. as long as we have icbms, we're going to have something like a launch on warning policy. as long as we have a launch on warning policy, we have the possibility of a false alarm, and in the wrong contest, a false alarm which could lead to an accidental nuclear war. i and others have for years tried to affect changes on our policy about how we deal with warning that have been largely successful. is i'm going to conclude the simply way is to eliminate the icbms x the launch on warning problem goes away. so far to very little effect, but i will keep proposing it anyway. the third thing we need to do is get serious about controlling fissile material, and i'm happy to say that one really major successful policy of this
administration has been the nuclear summit, directed precise hi to the action which could -- precisely to the action which could greatly reduce the possibility of nuclear terrorism, namely, controlling the fissile material. and if we are successful in that, we greatly reduce the probability of a nuclear terror act. and one of the things which i and others have been proposing is that we do not stop this effort with this fourth and final nuclear summit, that we find some way of continuing either future summits or at least a way of institutionalizing what has been done so far, the good that's been done already by these summits. and finally, there's a question of, again, focused on a nuclear terror attack, the key, of course, in any terror attack is the good intelligence so that you can prevent the terror attack from taking place. in this case the intelligence ought to be very precisely focused to the question of fissile material.
what's happened to it, who's trying to get it, who might have succeeded in getting it. so a very sharpened focus on our intelligence in this area. those are four modest recommendations i would make. i'd like to conclude my comments here by noting that this has been a long and, i should say, very often frustrating battle. many of you who engaged in the same struggle here will share my frustration about how hard it is to try to get real results. and so i've been asked by my friends and colleagues why in the world i pursue this seemingly futile attempt, particularly at my somewhat advanced age, why don't i simply retire and enjoy my golden years in that garden of eden known as palo alto? [laughter] ..
i have promises to keep. and miles to go before i sleep, and miles to go before i sleep. thank you. [applause] >> i'm going to turn the podium over to my friend and colleague, governor jerry brown who has had an absolute distinguished career as the governor of california. most important from my point is not only led the nation to lead the world to get climate change under control.
and now he's putting some of the same interest and attention to what can you do to do with the of the potential problem which is a nuclear catastrophe. governor brown. [applause] >> thank you, bill. and i am here because bill told me to be here. [laughter] and i'm glad to do so. so i come at this thing obviously not from the point of view of a national official or scientific expert. i come at it from someone who has observed the democratic process, political process, politics, campaigning, public opinion, propaganda, and all that goes into that general hurly-burly world the eyes of most of my life in. sometimes succeeding at.
i've been up and i've been down. i'm up right now. i've been in and i've been out. and i am in. i until it's better to be in than to be out. [laughter] most of the people i started with are not here anymore. so i don't know what satisfaction that is but most of my adversaries have departed this world. at least the early ones, in the '70s. soviet i am, kind of a survivor. i speak from the point of view of survivorship. and i do want to comment on a couple of concepts of former secretary perry. one is the danger has never been greater, and the public is blissfully unaware. and that's something of given a lot of thought to. big dangers, public unawareness. and a topic that i first really
looked at in this regard is climate change. it was just a couple of years ago there was virtually no news on climate change. in fact, i would hold meetings and agreements with scientists doing a lot of things this topic, and it would be meet you there and i would say, you will not write about climate change. climate change is not news. thinking about the nuclear danger, it struck me at the end of the world does not news either. so it's not something you are going to about. a big, big issues are very hard to grasp. the small minds of the political world do much better on very conventional kind of issues. there is a certain weakness nation about the political process. you can't just talk about anything.
what is thrown out is what you show up in, and those become the issues. it just happens that before the paris conference, leading up to that, there wasn't really much talk about climate change. that didn't mean it wasn't important, it wasn't something we had to deal with. it was your but these large possibly, or inevitably catastrophic outcomes, if they are not handled are not something that the political media or the political mind very easily deals with. and so working in the field of climate change where california has taken a real lead, a lead under both republicans and democrats, very significant. and now in california we have initiated a memorandum of understanding with over 130
states, provinces, and even countries to commit each of the signatories to keeping, to arriving at a level consistent with a rise of only two degrees centigrade or two tons per capita, greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. so this is a move where, while nation-states deal with it, states also could applicable and, in fact, many states are playing a role. again as this issue that yes, it's a local but it's also global. so no matter what california or the u.s. or any other country do, it really requires a real global commitment. that's climate change. now come into nuclear proliferation on nuclear materials and terrorism getting hold of these materials, that's also something that one country can't deal with alone. it does take cooperation. so whatever the politics are, it
has to be cooperation with, hopefully, all the countries of the world. so that is the conflict if you look at the presidential campaigns, certainly with russia and the united states, but the fact is that without russia and the u.s. collaborating, we are not going to deal effectively with the threat of nuclear materials getting in the wrong hands. of those materials being fashioned into a nuclear device, and that device going off and causing catastrophic damage. that's the threat. and the solution does not lie just in washington, although it lies there in many respects for contributing to the solution. it lies in all these other capitals. so we have to have negotiations, dialogue, discussion. and that runs into the problem that they'r there are all these,
ukraine, syria, all sorts of things. at the fact that these issues are real doesn't mean that the danger of nuclear terrorism is an equally real, or the danger of mr. commissioner last night we saw the first preview of command and control. many of you may have seen that book, command and control. it talks about this acted in arkansas in 1980 which didn't get much attention, but which happened, they blame it on human error but actually the machine that had a warhead capable of having more firepower than all the weaponry in world war ii, including russia and not the sake. that one warhead could have blown up and could have killed hundreds of thousands of people in arkansas -- nagasaki. it didn't go off. it still blew off, people were
hurt at what cost it, someone dropped a bold and the ball bounced and put a hole in the tank, at the tank started leaking and that reduced pressure and pretty soon that thing could have blown up. i can give you all the technical reasons but there it was. this is a series of thing. of course, they said the bomb was perfect. the machine was perfect. it wasn't human beings that were in error. human beings are always going to be a mayor, and we are creating machines that can't win in the hands of human beings, and go wrong and will go wrong. it's only a matter of time. secretary perry said we made it by luck without a nuclear catastrophe. that's robert mcnamara. he also said that. a number of others have said. we have made it by luck. that in itself, looking at the political philosophy based on luck, that's not good enough.
i think it's also well to remember something i've noticed, there are a lot of dumb ideas that get clearance he -- currency. things we think is so important when period are not so important later. that's one of the things i noticed since i started, i started by statewide political career in 1970 when i ran for secretary of state. qer decades later and i've noticed many ideas that sounded good then, don't sound so good now. let's take the idea of building 70,000 nuclear weapons. now that's a dumb idea. we had to back away from it. it was dumb then but we didn't see it. and so that's why you've got to think, what dumb ideas are we so embedded in that we don't have enough distance to notice their stupidity?
we heard about the phrase bolt out of the blue. secretary perry says that without much of a threat, but that was a big thing. i've been around long enough to remember massive indoctrination, that was the doctrine. mutually assured destruction. then i heard about window of vulnerability back in the 1980 presidential campaign that was one of the issues, ma the mx missile, going to take it around trained. i said and stated of caring an mx missile why don't we get a bullet train? which we are now doing in california by the way. a lot of these ideas people to it pretty seriously and window in the cuban missile crisis there was a russian submarine that have nuclear torpedo, and that the american ships going after the submarine forcing it to surface. submarine thought it was under attack, and two of the three
decision-makers said fire a way that nuclear torpedo. well, if that had happened that might have been the end. that might have started the escalation cycle, but it didn't. again, we were lucky. and so luck is a big part of this. and how long is the luck going to go on? all about, i can tell you just from, you can't rely totally politicians even know what they're doing or telling you the complete truth about what they're doing, or about what they're concerned about. they are just human like anyone else. we are dealing with a very inhuman technology. namely the power to blow up the world, to blow up the city, to spread radioactive material, dirty bomb. these are big, serious issues that are not rhetoric your a lot
of the campaigning is about stories and rhetoric and all sorts of things but there's some real stuff going on. climate change israel. let's look at the "washington post" today in the "new york times" about the western arctic, above the sea level just not alone will be up three feet within the lifetime of many people alive today. then you're going to get another two or three feet from other places, other causes. this is serious stuff. whether the people in florida want to believe in climate change, they are at risk out of the people in new york city and beijing and hong kong in many other places. is a big risk but are we mobilizing to do with it in a way that's commensurate to the challenge? answer, no, not at all. we are getting there but we are not there. so the same thing i believe with the nuclear danger. we have got to get more serious.
that means our leaders have to get out of the comfort zone and do everything humanly possible and technically possible to reduce the threat, the threat of terrorism, the threat of mistake, the threat of accident, this calculation. all these things are possible. human beings make mistakes, and we are building such a measurably powerful machines. how can human beings ever contain that? only by reducing in pulling back from where we have advanced to. that's not easy, but these are human problems and human beings can solve them. so that's why it's so important to deal with this issue come with all these other things we're talking about. when i say we, the political class dealing with various campaigns and speeches. they are big issues, the big issues, climate change and nuclear catastrophe our radio. just because you don't read about it everyday, it's time to
think about it, reflect on it, and do everything possible to avert it. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, governor brown, very, very inspiring and important remarks. and thank you, secretary perry, for your thoughts as well. i wanted to ask a couple of questions but really open it to the audience. so when it's time, please raise your hand. secretary perry, i was really taken by this sort of core remarks regarding the danger of nuclear terrorism. i think you said it's a very high probability that we might suffer an attack by terrorist guy think he said within the next few years.
so i would've wanted to sort of get your sense, you're a mathematician for life, as all mathematicians are. what are sort of the data points you are seeing? what specifically florida are you saying that makes you so concerned about this threat within such a short amount of time? what sort of our major transit that you were saying that for you the most about that? >> i've been concerned since the formation of al-qaeda, and particularly the discovery when we defeated them in afghanistan, that they actually were planning and studying how to get a nuclear weapon to use it. i have no doubt that had they been able to get one they would've used it. fortunately, they were not able to get one. today while i more concerned about it, i'm more concerned because the primary perpetrator,
potential perpetrator, would be isil. the difference between isil and al-qaeda is isil is larger, better organized, and most important is much better funded. much greater resources. so the probability of there being able to get at this summit here is much higher than it was her al-qaeda. i think the problem, the probability is higher today than it was back in the days of al-qaeda simply because of the isil is better funded and better organized. if i put myself in position of, god forbid, of being an isil head, what would i be doing to carry out this plan, it's easy for a to point to do it to it has a reasonable chance of success. so i do not see this as a remote possibility at all. we've got the people who want to do it. they have the resources to do it. as a matter of time they succeed
in getting enough this summer to get if they get enough whatever it is, 50 pounds or so of highly enriched uranium, i have no doubt they can build what's called an improvised nuclear bomb. improvised, don't make a mistake, this is bomb goes off with the power of our oshima bomb. it provides, they would not make a comeback to but anyway. to be a big thumbs apparatus which goes off on a truck and not awarded. from my point of view, the truck is quite sufficient to do the job. indeed, in my hypothetical scenario an attack on washington, that would be the means of delivery. so the motivation is there. the means of getting the fissile material are not that difficult if you have the resources. they have the resources. they have the motivation. >> i want to comment on this.
here you have former secretary to fencing materials are out there in the world, that is a group with the motivation and the capability of getting it, and if you look at his video on -- what is the webpage? [inaudible] >> you can click a six minute video which imagines the center taken place, nightmare scenario. i think it's a great activity. i would encourage you to go to the webpage, click on that site and spin sex watch the video. i think that ought to get our attention. we know in history great leaders, great educated leaders, great moral people do really stupid things. take world war i. you had a lot of good christian european leaders who probably had great educations and a really screwed up things in ways
that we are still paying for. so we ought to know human being can do some pretty horrific things and now with nuclear it's unimaginably more catastrophic. just take this matter of a terrorist nuclear bomb in washington. you could blow up half the caucus and tell the president, vice president of what happens to america? is there an america left as we've known since the founding of the republic? probably not. is not a risk one in 100, one and 1000 bucks whatever it is at risk is too high not to do every single thing possible to avert it. are we doing everything possible to offer it? no. we are engaged in a lot of other activities that are blocking the focus on this existential threat that we know, at least we believe, we believe bill perry, this israel and get if you look
through paper today you would not see it. there's a summit, that's good but that doesn't mean they even have a plan to deal with all the nuclear material that is loose in the world. because they don't. and if they don't come is that important to do something about it? i would say yes. so hopefully we get a response here, because it's a real and if they don't do it tomorrow, i will keep bugging them as long as i'm around, i'll tell you that. >> great. let me drill down on a part of this i think is important we've spent a little more time on your sense, both of your sense is that the conditions that are leading to this really concerning danger, and that is the sort of the amount and sort of locations of loose fissile material that you think can be developed into a bomb. what are the trends you're seeing? is it easier to get your hands on these types of mature than it was 10 years ago, 15 years ago?
this is, part of this is education. can you talk about the difference between a dirty bomb, a radiological device come and would you call it improvised nuclear weapon? those two issues i think are worth spending some time on. >> i think it was much easier to get the material five or 10 years ago than it is today. there's less of it today and another thing, the action of the nuclear summit has gotten quite a bit of that material off the streets and under better control of the most significant and important thing we have done dealing with a problem i'm concerned about has been as well as the other nuclear summit. i think it's been a tremendous achievement. it hasn't gone far enough and i'm fearful it's going to stop with this meeting today. we need to do something to keep that effort going. it's not something you did and it's done. it's a process you keep working and keep working, because there's a huge amount of this
summit to out of there. some of it still under very loose control. we still have people who have research reactors using fissile material. it's just not necessary. you can do the research without using the fissile material. a lot of things that can be done to improve. we don't great improvements in the last couple of years but a long way to go yet. the dirty bomb question, i don't talk much about that because i do want people to confuse the catastrophe of a real nuclear explosion with a relatively bad news of a dirty bomb. order of magnitude come to orders of magnitude different. the dirty bomb, of course, is putting greater active and you're on a regular bomb and blowing it up. so maybe a few people are killed by the bomb, but the dirty bomb causes contamination of the enemy and renders maybe some region with large area, a couple blocks in the city economically unusable for a long time.
summit called it a weapon of destruction rather than destruction -- someone called. i'm not minimizing, i'm guessing it does not compare with a real nuclear bomb going off. >> governor brown, you've been very passionate about -- >> even indicates that the dirty bomb a lot of things we can do we are not doing now. radioactively troop they could use is not fissile material. is out there and thousands of facilities because use for medical purposes. a lot can be done to get their control of that and should be done. i just want to separate from the problems of a nuclear bomb going off. >> governor brown, how do i'll go about s serve closing this gp that you've been so passionate about between the danger and the sort of relative apathy of a public policymakers, should this be discuss the ongoing campaign of what you think are the best leaders for us achieving this goal of education and action?
>> i think this is quintessentially a role for national leaders. it's truly certainly primarily the president and the president's other countries. the ball is indoor -- the ball is in their court. to our subsidiary leaders into united states senate, and the congress. there's a budget process to consider the nuclear arms buildup. that's an opportunity to talk about what the goals are, what our alternatives to what is being proposed. i think that's where. i think the our people in the media to write about these things. to our questions and debates. it go back and do a word search for what's been talked about in the presidential debates, you will see virtually nothing about the range of nuclear danger that has been talked but just in the
last half hour. so that reflects a judgment on the part of all the people who conducted the debates that what we are talking a debate is not important, or it's not true. it's got to be one or the other. they believe, name all the different tv stations and questions can if they believe everything bill perry believed, it would've been some some questions and some follow-up on this topic. but there wasn't. so that tells you that is an area where there should be, where there could be some initiative. so i think is a mentioned those levels, i think people have to just as about of information of public opinion, what's the hierarchy of threats, or what's the hierarchy of issues? what's the most important thing come and you can thank all of the issues people are talking about and let's wait them on one side, decapitating the american
government with an improvised nuclear bomb. where would you rate that along with the fairest issues that you read about today in the paper? or a nuclear one of these accidents which have occurred many times about a nuclear accident. as bill made a point i want to emphasize, he talked about context. if everything is all peaceful and there's some 200 missiles coming our way, maybe that's a mistake. but if you're in the middle of a cuban missile crisis confrontation or some other high degree of hostility, and so things come up, you won't have the same tolerance level to take the time to figure it out. i just think that what's needed is for anybody who has any access to a pending or power to put into the balance of consideration the real weight of the nuclear danger.
and i would add climate change which is a longer list, but each of these are similar in this respect. even though the worst part of climate change is down the road, if you wait for down the road it's too late. you've got to operate before you don't have full, complete information. the same thing about many of the decisions we are making now. the momentum can build. over the next three decades close to $1 trillion of nuclear investment, that's a momentum and we won't be by ourselves. there will be a response and there will be other countries that will do that. and if we think of the nuclear nonproliferation treaty and article six, the nuclear powers are supposed to negotiate on total disarmament of nuclear weapons. that's pretty much a dead letter. so i think there's a lot of awareness that would be very useful, starting right in the
political go into the media and then whatever other organs of power exist in our society. >> let me ask one last initial question and then i will look for hands in the audience but let me turn the clock back to 2009. i think was april when president obama gave the prague speech, which was, laid out his vision of several with another weapons and is recognition of the importance of maintaining a safe, secure and effective u.s. arsenal as we're moving toward, towards the. regional conflict hasn't gone away. since then i think as you said, secretary perry, a lot of progress on the track of securing and controlling a securing and controlling a getting a hand on fissile material, but i have to say on the of the track, the twins have been very, very bad. the u.s. did come to an agreement with russia on the new s.t.a.r.t. treaty which was very helpful, very helpful indeed. the u.s. and russian warheads
were cast than there were various other limit. but every other country has been really building. china has been building. pakistan i think is building at a more rapid rate than any other country on earth. at almost every country except for france and the united kingdom i think with nuclear weapons, russia included, is increasing the role of nuclear weapons in their security strategy and increasing their arsenal. so how can we now sort of we start a process where the arsenals of the powers that do have nuclear weapons are brought, the acceleration is reversed at some point and capped? it's a difficult word for the united states to try to sort of advanced this kind of initiative does no one else is doing it. >> when president obama made his speech in prague, i really thought we were set for major progress in this field.
and for a few years we did have major progress. the new s.t.a.r.t. treaty, the summit started. very important changes were made. but then everything came to a grinding halt and now moving in reverse instead of forward. i can't give you a full geopolitical explanation of why all that happened, but i think it's probably true that the president, after two or three years after his prague speech, he thought he was a political loser and gave up, for example, fall on on the new s.t.a.r.t. treaty. he gave up trying to get the ctbt ratified. i think i was a political aa correct political judgment that he could not succeed on his part. it seems to me that the first and most critical thing that some of this was no doubt influenced by the rapidly deteriorating relationship
between the hostility really between a kind and russia. it seems to me without a doubt the first major thing that has to be done is address the underlying problem. i don't know if anybody come any better way of addressing it and as i said before, the two presidents we engaging, that whatever their differences are, whatever the differences between the two countries are we do have a common interest in preventing a nuclear catastrophe and they should be engaging on the issue and to protect they could focus on one specific point, which is what our two countries do to prevent ice of getting a nuclear bomb and using it against either washington or moscow. i think moscow is as much at risk as washington is. that's something we have in common. difficult working together on the made we could do with other issues as well. let me just tell you one more thing, try to, wow feel so strong about this. the segment after i became secretary defends i went over to
ukraine. ash carter and i have started a program to try to dismantle all of the nuclear weapons which were in the three countries, ukraine, belarus and -- which inherited them. we went to see come over to the beginning of the dismantlement of those weapons. and arrived at the site an agenda who's in charge of that site took us on a tour. we went down to the control center of the site. they were too young lieutenant sitting there at the control center, and they've been told to do a show and tell to the distinguished visitors. so what they did is they went to practice countdown, up to but not including the last step.
those two, 20 something lieutenants, have the buttons in front of them, whic which of tho of them had pressed what had set off 200 warheads all and that target into tiny. just that once i come to young lieutenants. and they could have destroyed the united states basically, those two young man. and i sat there watching that. it struck me in a way that never struck me before. the complete absurdity of what we were doing. the complete absurdity of it all. i have never forgotten that moment. is one of the factors which has driven me to where i am today and what drove me to write that book, trying to educate other people. if so people can vicariously extremes some of the things i've experienced, maybe there's a different view of the dangers is problem is. >> if i could add comment the
scenario that you paint in the beginning of the book, sort of fictional but very possible scenario of a terrorist use of a weapon in washington is very gripping. i strongly commend secretary perry booklet also think it's a very real, real types of things that can happen. and a very scary concerning picture you paint but we can do, there are things we can do to reduce the danger. first question in the middle. >> thank you. secretary perry, you've been promoting the idea of eliminating the land-based icbms for some time. it's a sensible idea. it reduces vulnerability gets eveeven economical thought likeu to be a political analyst and analyze the pushback and the lack of traction you've gotten. governor brown, is this an issue
you plan to spend more time on, not just the icbms, the nuclear issue, in the years to come? what can a governor do and what can i post governor do? >> a post governor can do less than a governor i can answer that. [laughter] spent a post secretary can do less than the secretary also. [laughter] >> secretary perry, what's the political, i think the first question was, how can we come out under proposal to to eliminate one of the three legs of the nuclear triad, as we call it, get some traction? >> i may be pursuing mission impossible, and the pushback on this as you might imagine is enormous. i think i'm making little or no hedwig on a. my rationale is simple though, twofold. first of all, between a submarine forces that are airborne forces, we have more than enough deterrence capability. more than enough, reliable,
assured deterrence capability and secondly, the icbms as i said have this peculiar problem in that they are susceptible to the false alarm leading to an accidental nuclear war. i don't want to overstate, it is a low probability. we have survived many years without it ever happening. during the cold war i believe it was a risk we had to take him and i didn't pursue it again. today, i believe it's a risk we do not have to take. why do we take, if we can get our deterrence without that box so the logic is simple, not effective but simple. >> and do you think, just to be clear, for those who don't know, russian forces, significant portion of their triad is based on land, and so would you recommend this move regardless of what russia does speak with
yes. i suggest from my own security point alone. i have no reason to believe, in fact i highly doubt that the russians would follow suit. the bulk of their retaliatory forces come injured forces is in land-based icbms although they are starting to move toward submarine forces now. >> governor, you are in charge of one's largest economies in the world. how do you plan, the other question was how do you plan to pursue this agenda of? >> i'm in charge of two of the weapons labs that are designed next iteration modernization, quote-unquote. also california, my alma mater where i went, the home of the first nuclear bomb was actually developed on the berkeley campus. so we have a lot of connection
there to the nuclear world. and just having been through this conversation for the last many decades, it seems like ideas that were obsolete 30 years ago are still brought back as fresh. one of the word i haven't heard discussed today is escalation and the nature of escalation, which is the more you do, the more i will do. a more i do, the more you will do. that's called escalation. it's a form of addiction. they key concept of addiction is a next bill is not like the last one because you need more. and then the nuclear escalation, you have to keep rising, yet to keep upping the ante. by the time you have moved up to
escalation ladder of the world is a much more dangerous place, the complexity, the room for error is much higher. this is what robert oppenheimer said about the world was had and the direction of hell out of high rate of speed with a positive rate of acceleration. and he was thinking of this notion of escalation, i think. reason i've heard all these bad ideas a long time, and i've been led to think a lot about this notion of deterrence. because deterrence is kind of the notion that justifies all response activity. deterrence, robust deterrence can effective deterrent, extended deterrence. all kinds of brands of
deterrence, so what is deterrence? what is deterrence? its if you do something to me, i'm going to do something to you. the question, what is that something? some people think you can put up a defense shield. a lot of people, i think secretary perry is one of them, don't think you can do that. the only thing you can do is do a lot of damage. you blow us up, we will blow you up. that was mutual assured destruction, mad. that was talked about 30 years ago. we have an escape from as far as i can tell. now what do you need for mutual assured destruction? obviously we felt we needed 70,000 weapons of all kinds, now the number is down, i don't know, five to 7000, count the ones in reserves, i don't know how many there are. summer between five and 10,000 nuclear warheads. you need that many? how many do you really need? many people think you need to try it, you need the subs come
the planes, you need the icbms. secretary perry says no, you'll need two out of three. some people so you only need one. china only has 400 or so but now they're getting along with the program so they will escalate. it's a very squishy concept that undergirds the entire topic of nuclear escalation. how much, when is enough enough? and in addiction enough is never enough, the only outcome is usually, either you stop by letting it go or you collapse. you overdose. and so those are kind of the two ways. you get off it or it goes off. you are not there anymore. so i think that's why i'm interested in this topic because i like to survive, and i'm interested in the prevalence of dumb ideas in politics. [laughter] and i've seen a lot of them come
and this whole topic here, the answer is approach to such an overwhelming catastrophic danger inclines me to think about it, speak where i can i join the secretary when he asks. and also to try to nudge people in what i call a more coherent direction. i do think that this issue is not the prerogative or the province of the nuclear priesthood. we are in a democratic society and public issues should be publicly debated. an issue of survival certainly deserves to be debated. and as the elected executive in america who has been elected by more votes than anyone else other than the president, i feel i ought to speak about it, and so i will. [laughter] >> thank you very much.
i think this gentleman over here is next, so if we could bring a microphone over to him. >> secretary perry, suppose china and the u.s. are accusing each other. is there a miscommunication of south china sea and the other issues wax because barack obama is meeting with chinese president xi jinping today. how would you advise the leaders of both parties? >> question about the south china sea but i think relevant today, i think we're a lot, there is renewed competition sort of among great powers like china, russia and the united states. that makes this danger more concerning, i think the danger of this calculation. calculation. >> i think it's highly unlikely the united states and china would blunder into a nuclear war.
but what's going on in a south china sea now concerns me because it does provide a context again of, it is easy, i don't believe for a moment that either china or the united states would contemplate a nuclear war against the other. but i do believe that the forces are under way right now in the south china sea could lead us to blunder into some kind of a military conflict. not one which the president of china wants and not one the president of the united states once. but if you have military forces out and see brushing into each other, the decisions that get made by the president. they get made by the ship commanders were the airplanes pilots. and they can conduct actions which cause some kind of a military conflict, and then you to worry about the danger of escalation. so i don't want to paint a grim picture but as i said when i started off by saying there's no reason to believe and i'm not
concerned that u.s. and china would ever enter into a nuclear war. but i am concerned we are in a situation that all where we could get involved in where we tcould blunder into some kind of a military conflict. and i think that's an unnecessary danger. the way to do with what that has to do with the underlying issue, why is there conflict in the south china sea? what do we do to resolve that? it's not necessarily a united states issue. it's an issue between china and other nations in the region but the trite as an interest in it because we do a lot, have a lot of ship traffic that goes through the south china sea. so we are concerned. i think it's down that we have that kind of a problem facing us today and the u.s. and china ought to do without reckless if we can find a way of telling
that down. >> microphone to barbara slavin in the second row, please. >> thanks very much come to barbara slavin for the atlantic council. governor brown, when your father was governor i remember being taught to duck and cover at our elementary school in santa monica. so that was of course not very useful. i have questions about iran and north korea, governor perry the what would you do to strengthen the iran nuclear agreements? are you concerned about -- >> pardon? >> what would you do to strengthened iran nuclear agreement beyond what's already in the sort of jcpoa? are you concerned about the missile launches, for example? and what is your advice on north korea? how can we re-engages this country, given its rhetoric, its actions? it seems impervious to influence. thank you. >> i don't know how to add much to your first question.
i think the iran nuclear deal was a wise move on the part of both countries, both in terms of dealing at least the time of which iran could have a nuclear weapon, delaying considerably. and most importantly, creating an apartment where we might be able to see some improvement, in the government an event which would lead to improved relations between iran attorney. there's a reason for the united states adamant to be enemies. iran is a great country with a great culture. we should find a way of our two countries to be living together peacefully. this iran nuclear deal was the first positive step in that direction so i will applaud both leaders of countries to come to agreement. it's just a step come and more important steps still lie ahead can't use that as a template for what we can to in the future rather than look at the end of what we should be doing with
iran. into north korea, i have lots of advice what to do about north korea about the years 2000, none of it was taken your i think we are facing a terrible problem today which is entire unnecessary. it could've been avoided had we taken the right actions 15, 16 years ago. but that's, we cannot revisit history. we are where we are now with north korea. the best thing our governments have been able to say is that we should restart the six-party talks. and i look at the history of the six-party talks and say why? there's been i don't know, 13, 14 years at a been a complete exercise of futility. i do think we should find a way of restarting serious discussions with north korea, but i would not do that.
i would not advis advise the prt to do it advise the president to do it unless he took a president step, and that's have surged discussions with the chinese government. i would hope even a discussion our two presidents have about come to take now would be how that is one other issues. because if one of the recent six-party talks have been so unsuccessful is because the united states and china have not only different views of what to do but have different views of what the problem was. i think they're thing in the development in north korea in the last decade that china may be rethinking their views about what the problems of north korea. we might not be able to come to an agreement with china on a series of the problem and then we might be able to come to agreement with china about what to do with the problem. if the united states and china could agree on a policy for data with north korea, then i think we would have some chance of success. any diplomacy with north korea is going to have to involve both
what diplomats like to defer as carrots and sticks. we have lots of carrots with north korea but we don't have any sticks. joystick we have against north korea is going to war which were not willing to do. but china has sticks and one of the principal suppliers of food and fuel for north korea. so if we could agree on the problem is serious, in the united states and china could put together diplomatic strategy which is both carrots and sticks involved in which would have some chance for success. i think it's a serious problem getting worse every year. it was just i think a few weeks ago north korea's announced he y would drop a nuclear bomb on the united states. this is bluster. this is foolish talk. but it does have some basis behind it and that they may soon be able to, in fact, do that. not that they could do that without suffering irreparable
damage to their own country, still why we should let ourselves get in that position? the basis for a deal with north korea i think cannot simply be you give up your nuclear weapon and we would do the following things. that has been our basis for many years. it could've worked back 15 years ago when i was working on the problem. the basis today has me something more like what was suggested, you start and interposition nutrition physician when you ask them what our position is, you may not do three things that you may not build more bombs. you may not build better bombs, you may not transfer nuclear weapons or nuclear technology. and then in return we do certain positive things. if we could get that agreement, then that greatly lowers the danger provides a platform which we go to the next, how we get
them to give up the nuclear bombs. but the president agenda and the present approach to six-party talks have been an exercise in futility for the last 15 years or so i will continue to be a less would make a major change in approach. >> i think we have time for one last question. >> -- saying that if we avoided certain actions, we might've been able to get north korea to avoid a nuclear bomb, but we didn't. that again, assuming secretary perry is right, underscores this reality of making big mistakes. i think it's imperative that we reflect not only on our successes and our indispensability is, but where we've done some things that were really not smart, and acknowledged that so we cannot make more than.
and i think that's a very difficult thing to do in the political process, particularly when it isn't much of a debate going on. even like the inability of we have a major party that won't get a vote on the comprehensive test ban. that's a real impediment. that goes back to what you need for determined? do you really need new experiments, new test? if we have no tests, who else is new to us? and then all that goes for. this seems pretty illogical but there's a more prudent path we forward but i wouldn't say that washington in all its fullness, namely the executive and the legislative branch, are on the track yet. >> incidentally on the coverage of test ban treaty, my position was very clear and straight forward. i think it is in the supreme national security interest of the united states to ratify
company to test ban treaty, nevermind the diplomat aspect. nevermind the good feeling aspect of the. it is in our national security interest to do that, and we are not doing that. >> i think we should end of there. especially on this last very important point i think which gets almost no attention in washington. i think there should at least be vigorous debates when these issues get such catastrophic consequences for our security, our allies and partners come for the world. i really, just again, i'm thrilled to host these two great leaders were very passionate about an agenda item that isn't getting enough attention. before we thank you i would implore all of you, get involved, started the ones that or the other. we really want you to engage because this is not an issue that is going away anytime soon. indeed, the transfer quite worrisome. so please join me in thanking governor brown and secretary perry. >> thank you, barry.
[inaudible conversations] >> today the american enterprise institute and the foundational the discussion on expanding opportunities for the national labor market in the digital economy. that's life at 1:30 p.m. eastern. the senate returned at 3 p.m. for general speeches. at five debate begins on a bill to combat the theft of corporate trade secrets, a final vote is set for 5:30 p.m. see both here on c-span2. >> this week on c-span, the supreme court cases that shape our history come to life at the c-span series landmark cases. are 12 part series explores real life stories and constitutional drama been some the most in the
decisions in american history. >> this is a story in the case of presidential power and influence during times of war. it put before the court simple things about the conditions under which presidents can do things that may not be expressed in the constitution. and limits of congress and the court spent chief justice rehnquist said as she did that case comes to be accepted by the culture. >> it was a sweeping decision. in isolated the arrest of one of only four nations of 195 across the globe about abortion for any passionate it has not settled the issue at all. >> tonight we look at the case youngstown sheet and tube company versus lawyer, stating it was unconstitutional for president truman to seize control of steel mills during the korean war to a cousin of the authorized by congress.
please carry our best wishes back to your husband with whom you know we have a long and deep relationship at the atlantic let me give him our distinguished leadership award last year with great pride. i would like to extend a special welcome to it excellent the, mr. ambassador of afghanistan to the united states and his wife who are joining us for today's conversation. mr. ambassador, which rate the value of the council's strong, productive relationship with your embassy. we consider this bilateral relationship to be a relationship than a size and portend in the month and years ahead and we look forward to working with you on strengthening our bodies. atlanta can support direct your, ambassador zalmay khalilzad is also here. his generous support of the
council is a crucial catalyst that enables our afghan programming. and if you have spent time with zal know he built a beautiful career diplomat and foreign policy leader and has unique challenges communicants the challenges we have today, but now you can go beyond knowing it. you can actually read about it. he is just publishes the beyond boy and if you look at my former work place, "the wall street journal" and this morning's edition has an incredible review. that is a plug that i give to all hard-working book writers. he's a compelling storyteller, so it is well worth reading. also to understand his upbringing in afghanistan and the life you lead afterwards. we're also also joined by ambassador richard olson. he will be joining us, who serves that the state department or afghanistan and pakistan. today's conversation is public
and on the record. i encourage you to join the conversation online using hash tag rula ghani. we are at a crucial moment for the afghan state and people appear 2015 was a significant year, the first full year in office for his unity government led by president ghani, chief executive abdullah and 2016 promises to be equally demanding. nader is straining to maintain commitment in the middle east and this year the member nations will repeat engagement in the sin we commit their support. amid renewed violence between the taliban, the government in kabul, the afghan government must find ways to keep at bay forces that could reverse progress made since 2001. as the security threat loomed, we must consider the human cost of increased instability and violence. it is more critical than ever to cultivate a strong, healthy and
vibrant society and deploy security and economic policies that harness the nation's potential. we in the united states have seen what happens when we take our eye off afghanistan and the important of that country in the past and we cannot allow ourselves to make the same mistake again. we look forward to hearing from the first from the first lady on these issues at the nexus of state and society. she's played an integral role in the efforts to overcome the legal economic and social impediments to progress. she's continuing to make women children and internally displaced peoples issues a central focus of the debates and government. since i'm not going to be introducing you, i'm not going to say anything more. i will leave that to the atlantic council, ambassador james cunningham, jim cunningham into a year ago with ambassador to afghanistan. i am very proud to have been at the atlantic council holding this euro and to have him now
introduce a woman who is shown a formidable role needed to advance conditions of women, children and internally displaced people in afghanistan. ambassador cunningham. [applause] >> thank you, fred. thanks to all of you for joining us today and for the many of you in the audience who have been in cage for a long time in afghanistan. i want to thank you for your support. we have a lot of distinguished guests here so i am glad you took time out of your busy schedule to join mrs. ghani and a special word to ambassador of norway and his wife. i'm not going to go into mrs. ghani's bio. you had that in documents. i also want to thank ambassador
khalilzad for joining us today. the session is on the record after the remarks. transfer will join her for a q&a. i want to say brief word about rula ghani is a person. my wife, leslie and i were very happy to have known her and her husband when we were in afghanistan and we are very proud to have her as a friend. we first met several years ago at her home in kabul. while she was not dead, she was a particularly public person. she was a gracious and engaging host, a warm and thoughtful person committed to improving afghanistan and supporting her husband's untiring effort in that regard and i mean untiring. when ghani ran for president, it was the first in afghanistan. she was a gracious campaigner. she was attacked and maligned for campaigning in some quarters and sometimes hurt always.
she remained committed to supporting the campaign into a better future for our country. as american ambassador is the entrepreneur and the president recognized her at his inauguration, a symbolic turning of the page in afghan history. afghanistan is facing severe problems and challenges as we all know, but there is a new afghanistan are leading and emerging. the future is in the hands of the afghans themselves and they are taking charge of their future. they need time and space and millions of courageous afghanistan -- afghans are working everyday to take advantage of the time and space. i am convinced that there is an opportunity for this country if the community maintains its commitment. and i am also convinced there should be no further reductions in u.s. international forces in support for a guinness and until
commission conditions on the ground and afghan capabilities make that possible. i've been consistently reminded over the course of my career is important that the individual has reappeared to propitious occasion occasion when the right person is at the right time and place to influence developments larger small and rula ghani is one of those people. april 6 she takes the stage at the annual women of the world -- women in the world summit in new york city. the senate tagline is meet the women who change the world. she is helping to change her adopted country's history and afghanistan is fortunate to have heard the right time and place. please join me in welcoming the first lady, rula ghani. [applause] >> thank you, jim for the very kind words.
i have a little trouble remembering that i am a first lady. i haven't changed. i've always been what i yam. i am comfortable with it and i hope you will be, too. in the name of god, the compassionate and merciful, distinguished members of the audience, [speaking in native tongue] i come to you in peace. that is what [speaking in native tongue] by inviting me to address a select gathering of cultural and influential overs and shakers, men and women, the atlantic council and its afghanistan writing initiatives are honoring me. i would like to thank fred kempe, jim cunningham and zal khalilzad.
thank you for the welcoming, members of the advanced camera for taking the time to come and listen to me. listening is something i myself still a lot in afghanistan. when i first decided to fully assume the responsibilities of first lady some 18 months ago, i was entering uncharted waters. i had no specific agenda, but that of serving the people, especially the vulnerable ones. that meant i had to get to know them better and understand their grievance. hence, the open door policy of my office. in the first six to eight months, group after group have come to see me. pouring out their heart and sharing their concerns. some came from the provinces, others from kabul. if you are civil servant, among
them of course the four women investors. others are social activists announced reviewers. to this date, it is somewhat less rushed. i listen to my four advisers who reported to me daily, for enthusiastic hard-working women slightly younger than i am who deeply care for their country, who still remembered how beautiful and strong it was 40 years ago, who are determined to rebuild society and who strongly believe in the capabilities of the afghan people. i also listen to the international community. some of you here -- some of you are here today. and can vouch for it. from u.n. agencies to embassies to international aid institutions, usaid, australian aid, et cetera, et cetera, to
ngos and even to individuals. and thinking, for example, the french lady is bent on creating a virtual cultural museum for afghanistan. i love their dynamism, though i sometimes laugh at their bureaucracy. almost to save a roundabout way that the information presented to you will be firsthand, factual and representative. it might not reflect which is rated journalistic or expert accounts. i was struck by a comment i was reading on yahoo! two days ago on the ongoing political debate on terrorism from susan hasler, a former cia fact checking analyst and she recently wrote, the old make the most
responsible claims by stating indisputable facts. hardly anyone will tell you where they got their information. repetition of volume tried to take the place of verification. i would use word for word her observation to the reporting on afghanistan these days. you know where i stand. journalists are so rushed trying to be the scoop story while trying to write a nice most of the additional and entertaining version, that they hardly have time to check their facts, witness the article in washington post two days ago. there are so many facts that were wrong. like so many people mentioned as being members of the administration. they used to be members of the former administration. so it's really not telling the
story the way it is. so repeated half-truths take a life of their own, especially of social media and suddenly become conventional wisdom. today is the existence that need to be debug. number one. the taliban are winning. really? why is that we keep hearing about the same 600 meters being lost and regained every other week or every other month and why is that they cannot claim to be what we need. the fact is they do not fully control enough territory to be able to make that claim. and by the way, i do want to ask this question. who is the institute for the study of word that produces maps to the contrary? i really would like to know because their information.
america has lost the war. that is number two. what war? america came to osama bin laden, which was done. to my knowledge, america is not a war with the afghan people. am i right? america has failed in afghanistan. number three. wasn't america's same to help rebuild the country and help it on its way to achieving political stability? wasn't the peaceful succession from president karzai to president i made the sign of political maturity? number four. the process in 2014 was fraudulent. how can you still insist on that when the u.n. commission carried on three different recount and i'm talking about total recounts
over two months and was unable to discover the alleging fraud on industrial scale. they did find some irregularities and they find them in both camps and the numbers were reduced by 1%. so again, the article in the "washington post" talks about legitimizing the government. and if you don't believe in election, maybe the u.s. should stop talking about democracy. because democracy is believing in the voice of the people and what they see. i don't know which number this days. the unity government is not
working. i asked, when angela merkel took over as six months to put together her unity government, nobody in the world linked. why should it be different in the case of afghanistan? it takes time to create a unity government. afghanistan is falling apart economically. maybe they mean that the pockets of the previous bureaucratic elite are no longer budging with ill-gotten money. and i've got, less corruption should be considered progress. the president of an efficient and organized. while it takes time to claim appears that but in management, it takes even more time for solid foundation on which to build the reform. let us keep an open mind.
besides, in their usip rate, already reporting the collection of revenue has already increased by 22% in 2015. if anything, this is not a sign of disorganization. ask a man are uncivilized. illiteracy does not mean lack of culture. this is some being people in the west of a hard time to understand. there is what you call oral culture and they can be deeply ingrained in all. among traditional society is highly cultured. of course this is seldom the case for war words. is it not true in most complex
situations? and again, it takes time to replace the reign of violence with the rule of law and the government is hard at work reforming the justice system. afghan women are worse off than before in any piece of the taliban will be made at their expense or its alternative, women have no say in the peace negotiations. i have heard that so many times. let's get the record straight. number two on the high piece count the latest know whether that former governor of the bonhomme province and no shrinking violet. another women also negotiating team, headed the all-important afghan women network. women are taking part in the peace process at the highest level. besides, president ghani himself has repeatedly declared in
public speeches at the issues of women's rights is nonnegotiable. i will not be surprised if some of you want to raise questions regarding several of the preceding point that i will be glad to engage during the recession. then they go talking more about your topic close to my heart, the women of afghanistan. as i mentioned at the beginning, there is a constant dream of women who come to see me. lately i have noticed an increasing number of accounts. of course we are far from having solved all the problems and challenges. it has been only a year since the barbaric tragedy and even less since the savage zoning to name just a few cases of violence against women. but the women of an did not take this laying down and have raised voices against all this violence.
one of the results of their efforts has been the creation with the head of the ministry of women's affairs. an emergency fund dedicated to the big ones of violence that have covered expense is, especially legal and medical ones. another has been the holding of several meetings and conferences with religious scholars have called too tired to discuss what is the place of women in islam and to clarify any misconceptions. and believe me, you would be surprised as to how many injunction in the holy corona preacher spoke for women and equal treatment of women and men. one very important developments in our country since the new government came to power 18 months ago has been the greater participation of women in public affairs. we now have four of women ministers, all for very act as
an effect to. our foreign service was not three women ambassadors, soon to be four. lamas had our first when the judge at the supreme court. by the way, do you know we have over 250 women judges in afghanistan, where some of our neighbors do not have even one? many more women have rejoined the civil service. some of them and respond to the petition. the police are aiming at recruiting 4000 women and have already passed the halfway mark. jeremy has identified positions exclusively to be filled by women but also declare it as another be open to both women and men and so on and so on. in other words, the present government is actively pursuing the integration of women in its decision-making processes.
at the cabinet level, the commission for gender policy led by vice president nash and attended by representatives of several minutes grief has been busy looking into the gendered unit of all ministries. every ministry should cause equal opportunity commission. the gender sensitivity of all official rules and policy. the ongoing reform of the justice system is also benefiting women. a special division of the supreme court is now dedicated to cases of violent against women and children and attended by one of the supreme court judges. this has ensures special attention and higher speed and resolving those cases. one such case is that a fire and i've been carefully re-examine. also a special commission of the supreme court has been reviewing the cases of every imprisoned
women and to date, 95 women have been released or pardoned and 42 have seen their sentences reduced. newly laid should regarding harassment at the work place were issued in september 2015. the criminal called is being amended so women running away from home are no longer automatically considered criminal and sent to jail. here again, many more assessments are still needed, but the justice system is definitely becoming increasingly fair to women. i could go on and on about the is being implemented at the minister foreign affairs of agriculture, and development and social affairs unit following the guidelines of the official national women economic empowerment plan.
my old team of advisers have also had their share in bringing improvement to the condition of women in afghanistan. in the hadfield, one nature accomplishment has been the formation of an association bringing together all existing specialist under the offices of public health ministry to set up the unified policy against cancer with an emphasis on breast cancer and cervical cancer. similarly, our office has supported a campaign launched by the ministry and has had a treatment center for addicts. are those of you to afghanistan, we now call it the center of pope, center for hope. with one special hospital dedicated to the treatment of 300 women addicts.
so it will not surprise you if i conclude today with a message of hope, the hope that i see on the faces of the women who come to visit with me. the hope that these women are slowly regaining control of their destiny. the hope that the protection of fortitude by the constitution is gaining momentum, the hope that they can become active participants in their country's social, economic and political allies, the hope that they can dream again for a better future for them and their families. nowhere is this message of hope stronger than in the eyes of the rising generation. we have terrific young women coming up. i see it at age 25 with a starting loan of 1700. i think it's equivalent of $40 or around there. she found a way to start three small businesses open to high
school and buy a piece of land on which she hopes to build a factory. that is ambitious. i see it in acutely aware of the educational aspirations from the province is because in kabul and other urban centers have access to education. it is still very difficult. she is finding so many ways to provide them with opportunities for learning and kabul and to brad. she gets them scholarships here in the state. she sent them in singapore. i'm not quite sure. about the dream of opening a secondary high school for them in the capital of kabul. i see it was founded in order to be of help to her community.
attending to those in need and to single-handedly managed to accompany 20 handicapped children and india why she had arranged for treatment and came back with 17 of them now able to walk. it was wonderful to see those little guys coming back. i see it at my level after several years of taking care of her brother was addicted to drugs. decided to open a shelter where 40 addicts are attended and who's running in parallel a small restaurant in order to cover her face. i see it in an mba graduate from the american university in afghanistan were actors that really is helping university student in the department of economics start their own business. it's not about to start the adventure that covers the whole process of production, in order
to create 5000 jobs to women and afghan provinces. if this is not hope, what is? thank you. [applause] >> thank you very much are that clear and forceful statement. i want to thank my friend, fred and my friend jim for their welcome of you and i. my own of welcome. for the audience still in the picture i have known president
ghani for a very long time, since we were in high school together. in fact, we were going to come to the united states has high school student, we went to the american embassy together and fill in the application for that, your first name, last name and i did not know what the last name meant because it's not just a first name. so, the president, dr. ghani was next to me, so he was a little more worldly than i was at that time because i had just come to kabul and he was a resident of kabul for a long time.