tv Washington Journal Anthony Brown CSPAN October 24, 2019 10:51am-11:21am EDT
>> politicon is live from music city center in nashville saturday at 2 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> sunday former supreme court justice anthony kennedy receives liberty medal at the national constitution center in philadelphia. live coverage at 5 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> the first of two house armed
services committee members will have on today were joined by congressman anthony brown democrat from maryland also a retired colonel in u.s. army reserve the ploy to iraq.- i want to start with sears and a to the president's remarks yesterday aboutar the quote great out, that he achieved in syria. >> his remarks were remarkable in terms of sort of creating this phantom victory of accomplishment where it's really anything but. i rarely agree with mitch mcconnell but i think here i will certainly adopt his characterization, which is this is been a great strategic mistake on the part of president trump withdrawing troops, u.s. troops, a small footprint from northern syria. and it leaves a lot of unanswered questions and increase risk for america, isis, the possible reemergence of isis. isis. yesterday we did note po hear mh about how we're going to counter
that. we didn't hear anything yesterday about what steps will be taken to prevent ethnic cleansing as turkey has promised to return press up to 3 million arab syrians to that region and what that will meet in terms of potential clashes with the syrian kurds. i think it left this one for a lot of answers. >> host: what was the alternative, to keep u.s. troops in syria indefinitely, to keep troops in between what was becoming a shooting war between turkey and the kurds, surge more troops into the region? >> guest: let me start by saying the decision made in late september, late september or in september to remove the 50 or so you'll soldiers, that was necessary because what we don't want is a small contingent of your soldiers between two convergent forces. but when people say the president greenlighted turkey, a
green light wasn't in september. the green light was back last year in december when the president announced wicklund withdraw 2000 troops in syria. it was at the time turkey began to mobilize its apparatus to prepare for an invasion that was going to take place in did this year in northern d syria. i believe the right approach, we learned this lesson in iraq. we're applying it in syria. you have a small footprint of u.s. personnel and assets, intelligence assets, air cover and special forces who train and advise a much larger force, in this case the syrian kurds, to do the fighting and that's what the kurds did. they did t the fighting and, unfortunately, they did a lot of dying as well, over 10,000 died. why? because a recounting isis and that was our goal as well. with apart on the grant and that's how we should operate,, small footprint, identify reliable partners, given the support and let them fight the fight.
>> host: plan as we understood earlier was perhaps even smaller footprint guarding some oilfields in syria and avenue u.s. troops stationed in western iraq to be able to go in it isis reemerges. but then some pushback from the iraqi government and whether those troops would be allowed. what is your understanding of the deployment picture right now? >> guest: again this is another example of the president's lack of knowledge, his ignorance and indifference to conditioned on the ground and the consequence of his decisions. iraq informed the united states or least they signaled to the united states last year when president trump suggested we would relocate u.s. forces from syria to iraq, to counter isis in syria, iraq he officials said that's a nonstarter. it's a goodd happen, and we're seeing that play out. look, i thought a number of briefings from senior pentagon officials, much of it is
classified. i want to go into detail of it but the idea of withdrawing all of our troops in syria really provides a wide opening for reemergence of isis. as has been publicly stated, u.s. forces moved to syria. will be a small footprint. we werea. beginning to her for e first time to protect oilfields that force needsne to be there o counter in the reemergence of isis. the question will be who will be our local partner, are the kurds going to step up in partnership with the united states? a b they will but it's less likely today than it was in the past. i don't anticipate we will have u.s. forces in iraq other than those who are training and advising iraqis on their in total problems. i don't think we'll have many if any u.s. forces, in iraq that its primary mission counting isis in syria. >> host: one of the committee
vice chairs joining us for this discussion on the "washington journal," taking your calls as well. before we leave syria, talk about what the house armed services committee is doing on that w front. >> guest: sure. right now what we are anticipating in congress, and it's not necessarily an armed services committee and issued, foreign affairs plays a big role, is looking at whether or not we need a sanctions bill. we condemned through a resolution, i believe those last week or the week before, the actions to withdraw syrian troops and send aw strong signl to turkey, and the next step would be strong sanctions certainly in places and ready to execute it turkey does, in fact, engage e in ethnic cleansing.
we already know, it's been reported, there are war crimes that event committed over the last two weeks as part of this turkish invasion and northern syria. the next step for congress -- you can't force theon the preso keep troops anywhere. certainly defund an operation which would you can take troops out but it's hard. congress can't push troops into the region. commander-in-chief function but i think sanctions certain something want to be considering tremor you couldid force sanctioned it get it vetoproof majority to do it. to you think you have to get to that point? we saw the president yesterday lift the sanctions that he was putting on turkey already try to write. the sanctions imposed have no effect in way. it was short-lived and we are not even sure to what extent the full extent ofe the sanctions were. i think we need to be ready to do that. i think we need to keep up a
bill we can pass, and if it is stated by the president, look, that should not prevent us from doing what we think is in the best interest of the united states and expresses the will of the american people. >> host: lets let's chat with w college. philadelphia, independent, ronald, good morning. >> caller: good morning, gentlemen. i would like to know what will be the deal when the syrians decide to join isis? thank you. have a good day. >> guest: the interesting thing is nobody really supports a would likely join isis. even the barbaric assad regime, you know, once to see the defeat of isis. russia wants to see the defeat of i isis. i ran as well. the problem is, ronald, none of them are willing to take a leadership to pull together a coalition to defeat isis. the only nation that has done
that is the united states. so we pulled together coalitions in different places in syria, with the syrian kurds and other forces. we called it the syrian democratic front, sdf. it will take u.s. leadership. it doesn't mean only the united states that is engaged in this butta is going to take u.s. leadership. i don't think the syrian government is going to join with isis but my concern is syria joined t with russia and with iran, certainly pushes u.s. interest out of the region. .. what donald trump did, let's go back to the democratic party when it comes to defend.
>> we are losing you a little bit. to your point about what the democrat party has done on defense, donald trump talked about it comparing his approach in syria to the approach of the obama administration. >> the last administration said bashar al-assad must go. they could have produced that outcome. they didn't. in fact they drew a powerful red line in the sand, you remember, the red line in the sand, when children were gassed and killed, but then did not honor their commitment as other children died in the same horrible manner. but i did honor my commitments with 58 tomahawks.
eight long years after president obama's ill-fated push-up regime change us troops are still on the ground in syria. rashard claridy congressman brown? robbie stott if you want to look at the obama administration's approach to syria, president obama came to congress and understood he was going to take the us military presence to address the challenges there, the emergence of isis, perhaps the stabilization of an unstable syria. there was an authorization to use military force. that is what a president not to do. layout the problem set and what a solution is and say i need authorization. congress rejected it. congress cannot bring itself to authorize military force. rashard claridy authorization
of use in military force in syria would pass right now? robbie stott i don't think an authorization for use of military force -- let me back up. on a bipartisan basis members of congress, both chambers support a small footprint in syria. so i think there is support for that. the problem is congress hasn't considered taking up an authorization of use of military force for 17 years, and the last one recently since 2001 to go into afghanistan and we see a proliferation of military deployments and engages in syria, iraq, afghanistan and africa on that 2001, ums. there has not been a debate about that in 18 years now that
the democrats went to the defense authorization act, some language that would limit the use of that as it pertains to iran but we need a full robust debate about use of military force not just in syria but around the world. rashard claridy on the line for independents, this is bob. isaac wilhite c-span is the best show on television. i don't know how to put this. russia is definitely an enemy and it is to going to come down to israel. you think of that small area, the biggest problem of the world. if you let me have a second i want to approach something and see where we are. when you hear of wars beginning
it does not signal why we turn. these must talk. but it is not yet. the nations in the kingdoms of the earth will rise against each other and their will be famine and earthquakes in many places but all this will only be the beginning of the horrors to come. only when god comes in judgment -- rashard claridy i think we got your point. robbie stott having some difficulty understanding the call, that question or the just of the comment but i will use it as an opportunity to talk about forever wars. the united states post world war ii put in place an effort to establish an international order that benefited our country and benefited many countries around the world. in order for us to minimize the
wars and conflicts the united states is involved in we have to do a number of things, work with allies around the world, share common interests, have robust diplomatic efforts. this administration has gutted the state department. there is no diplomacy going on. look at syria. there is only one state department diplomat on the ground and we need to invest more in humanitarian aid but development assistance to help those nations where they have fragile governments, unstable societies, weak economies, little opportunity where you find war, conflict and strife so we need a holistic approach with partners and allies around the globe and that is how we minimize the likelihood, potential of armed conflict. >> the first of two armed
service committee members that are going to join us on washington journal this morning, the others michael walsh, and republican from florida, part of that group of republicans who is the front page of the washington times puts it stormed the impeachment probe yesterday. you likely saw the news reporters house republicans go to the deposition hearing room yesterday. what our concerns about republicans when they did that? there wasn't a formal vote on impeachment and impeachment proceedings. republican say democrats were either scared of holding that to moderate members in trump district or don't want to give the republicans the power to subpoena witnesses. why not just hold a formal impeachment vote in the house to start the impeachment probe? >> impeachment is laid out, not even laid out. it is in the constitution. there is not a lot of detail in
the constitution to process how impeachment can be conducted. the house has a set of rules, the senate has rules for an impeachment trial and there is nothing in the constitution, house rules or law that requires a formal vote. what is important is we get to the truth and we have a fair, open and transparent process. if you look at the process we are in right now, 24%, almost a full quarter, one of every four republicans have access to that hearing that is taking place behind closed doors in the house intelligence committee. it is not closed doors, only because information is classified and the benefit of a special prosecutor like clinton impeachment and the nixon impeachment where a lot of that was behind closed doors and presented to congress. we are doing the work in the committee that the best prosecutor would have done. in that committee, one of every four republicans, that is unprecedented.
the infrastructure may have 10% of the full body and membership on the committee. this committee, with 12% of the membership. >> the house intelligence committee governing oversight. >> there are no restrictions, on republican members or the staff that don't apply to democrats. there is equal access to the witnesses, the documents and the process. adam schiff has stated that once he has organized, not in a manipulative way but once he organized information after hearing from witnesses and reviewing documents and present it to the public there will be open hearings to make the case, to demonstrate the evidence to go to the truth on these matters. the idea that you have to have a formal vote is found nowhere in law statute or rule. let me say i personally believe even if we took that vote we
would see the grandstanding, the stalling, the delays and the ploys we saw yesterday from the republicans. rashard claridy alex in new york city, democrat, good morning. isaac wilhite hello and thank you for taking the call. i think you are a good fellow. rashard claridy we are having a couple callers whose connections aren't working well as we apologize for that but we will keep trying. richard, athens, tennessee, republican, go ahead. >> thank you for taking my call. the question i have is where is the un in all of this? we hear a lot of talk about funding of the un and who is involved in the un but nobody else ever steps up except the us service men and women and we
have been put in the position of being of the world policeman and i just wonder how the representative would be able to explain to a gold star family of what those sons and daughters are dying for. misael arellanes mason lasarsa it is a great question. the united states should provide global leadership but i want to assure you i don't think that includes us men and women always on the front line of every fight and syria is a good example of what we learned in iraq. let's empower local partners and allies, people with a real stake in the outcome of these armed conflicts and let's empower them to fight that fight so that we don't see needlessly young men and women
from the united states having to needlessly die. the united nations should be involved in efforts like this and as a nation, through the united nations or not we should always be looking to bring together a coalition of partners who are willing to pursue the same ends and that is investment of military of it, dramatic effort and humanitarian develop and aid needs to be applied to address the problems we face. we should not do it alone. it is america first, it is really the america alone strategy. i would suggest america first should be global leadership but always looking to develop partners and allies to engage in areas around the world. >> host: from madison, mississippi, independent, good morning.
>> caller: i would like to comment to mister brown the situation in syria has been around for years. i was a sophomore in high school in 1974. the situation has always been protect israel. we have to put it to the question, that is why they we are there, to protect israel. the turks go back to the ottoman empire, they controlled the whole area of saudi arabia today and persia. in 1935 iran, persia, changed their name. what happened? most americans don't know the history. all we are doing, i was in the first gulf war. george bush senior. and king far was king of arabia. i used to work out of town in riyadh. we are going through a lot of
issues, always extending america but the thing is it is all about israel. >> caller: >> guest: thank you for your service, you mentioned you are a gulf war veteran and i thank you for your service. is real is an important ally in the region, no doubt about it. a stable democracy. it is not perfect, nor is the united states. it is a democracy that is evolving and has its own internal challenges but we have a strong relationship with israel, a military relationship, economic relationship, cultural relationship and i think it is one that out to be protected and defended and we have a strong relationship with turkey. turkey is a nato ally and this makes the situation in syria difficult, we are seeing a nato
ally applying force in such a way in syria that pushes the united states down and exposes us to the risk of isis. we have no guarantee the turkey is going to pick up the fight against isis, no guarantee that turkey is going to do everything that needs to be done to assure 10,000 isis fighters, the kurds are holding in detention. the will remain in detention. that will assume the custody of those isis fighters. that is a troubling scenario with a nato ally and i should add the nato ally in turkey. i don't want to bring in too many unrelated issues but if you look at the f 35 program they are a partner in the a 35 program. not only purchased a 35s but part of the supply chain and they want to buy russian made s
400 and defense missile systems designed to shoot down the f 35s. it is incompatible so turkey as a nato ally has been difficult to work with. what we need to do is not shunned turkey and push them out of the nato orbit but find a way to bring them back into shared goals of this alliance. >> host: one last call, in cincinnati, ohio, democrat, good morning. >> caller: good morning. i'm really glad in my opinion you finally explained what happened with president obama. as far as the authorization to do what he wanted to do congress didn't do it. what i wanted to talk about, what bothered me, all my uncles, they are all dead. i always heard the withdrawal is one of the most dangerous times.
what bothers me is how trump did it. really should take actions to try to get out of something. what worries me is does he think about the consequences of his orders? >> guest: you are absolutely right. a withdrawal of forces from a theater of operation is as dangerous if not more dangerous than going into the theater. one of the problems you have with donald trump is he speaks too often, too much, and too loudly about decisions he is about to make even when they involve sensitive, dangerous military operations and if you
are going to withdraw troops just like when you are going to introduce troops you notify the troops, they are told you can't even share this with your family. we will notify the press and the world later. i certainly agree with you that is sort of broad pronouncements of withdrawals don't necessarily -- they endanger us forces. >> host: a minute or two (want to give you a chance to talk about your late maryland colleague elijah cummings. >> guest: we are going to miss him dearly. he was a close friend, reached out to me on so many occasions, offered advice and counsel, always answered my calls and texts when i needed his advice as a council and one thing i admire about elijah is if you look at the 20 years he was in congress he always stood for empowering people. that was the theme of his first
floor speech. it is how he conducted himself every day and always challenged us, we are better than that and always challenging us to focus on the people and we are going to miss him dearly. >> host: elijah cummings will lie in repose at statuary hall, that ceremony starting at 10:30 on c-span assuming you will be there. >> guest: i will be there. >> host: please come back again, anthony brown. >> the u.s. senate is in recess so lawmakers may attend a memorial ceremony for maryland congressman elijah cummings who passed away last week. we are airing that ceremony live from the us capital right now on c-span. we will have live coverage of his funeral in baltimore tomorrow starting at 10:00 am eastern. the senate will be back at noon eastern today, lawmakers will take a procedural vote on us district court nominee justin
walker. also on the agenda 2020 domestic federal spending. follow live senate coverage on c-span2. live friday night two candidates challenging donald trump for the republican nomination, c-span host a conversation with massachusetts governor bill wells and former self the governor and congressman mark sanford to talk about their plans, strategies and why they are running against the president. they will be taking their calls, tweets and facebook comments, part of campaign 2020 coverage live at 8:00 pm eastern on c-span. watch anytime on c-span.org and listen to the free c-span radio apps. >> i am not caring much about popular opinion or pleasing a consumer. when we socialize things like healthcare, you will no longer be bankrupt.