tv Armed Services Chairman Expresses Frustration Over Lack of Afghanistan... CSPAN June 15, 2017 4:09am-7:01am EDT
defense's fiscal year 2018 budget request. we welcome you and thank you for your many years of distinguished service and leadership of our men and women in uniform. before we begin we all want to acknowledge the service and sacrifice of sergeant eric houck, sergeant william beas, they were soldiers killed this weekend in afghanistan. the thoughts and prayers of this committee are with their loved ones. the sacrifice of these showers a painful reminder that america is still a nation at war. this is still true in afghanistan where after 15 years of war, we face a stalemate and need an increase in resources if we are to turn the situation around.
we remain in a campaign to defeat isis where u.s. troops are helping to destroy isis and reclaim mosul and raqqah. meanwhile threats around the world continue to grow more complex and severe. north korea is closing in on the development of a nuclear capable intercontinental ballistic missile that can target our homeland and iran continues to destabilize the middle east and seek to drive the united states out of the region. at the same time, weave entered add new era of power competition. russia and china, despite their many differences, are both modernizing their military it is, developing advanced capabilities to undermine our ability to project power globally. russia continues to occupy crimea, destabilize ukraine,
threaten our nato allies, falls to the murderous regime. and pursue a campaign of active measures to undermine the integrity of western democracies. thousands of our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines deployed in harm's way around the globe, those of us charged with the awesome responsibility of providing for the common defense must ask ourselves, if we are doing everything possible to support our brave men and women in uniform to meet the challenges of an increasingly dangerous world and conduct ssu their mission. i'm sad to say we are not. in response to rising threats we have asked our military to do more and give more but have given less and less to them. our witnesses' opening statements are a harsh indictment to this failure but they are right. i implore my colleagues to
listen carefully to their testimony and heed theired admonition to us. spending caps mandated by the budget control act have led to a 23% cut to the defense budget. these reductions con pounded by growing fiscal uncertainty and continuing reside lugs have left our military with shrinking forces, depleted readiness and aging equipment. this has put the lives of the men and women in the uniform at greater risk as this committee has heard in testimony for years from our senior military officers. administration's fiscal year 2018 budget request, if enacted could help to arrest the decline in our military's readiness but ultimately and unfortunately, it falls short of the president's commitment to rebuild our military.
the proposed defense budget of $603 billion is arbitrary and inadequate. arbitrary because the top line was written into the budget control act six years ago, prior to the sequester cuts and inadequate because it represents just a 3% increase over president obama's defense plan. it is hardly surprising, then, that this committee has received lists of unfunded requirements from the military services totally over $31 billion, all of which, secretary mattis testified last night in the house armed services committee that he supports. our military service leaders have testified to this committee that this budget would staunch the bleeding, but we owe our men and women in uniform more than that. it's been said that this budget request focuses on readiness and it is true that the requested
funding would make the current force more ready for the next year. but ultimately readiness is more than training hours and time on the ranges. real readiness requires sufficient capacity to enable our troops simultaneously to conduct operations, prepare for for deployment, rest and refit and focus on the challenges of tomorrow. this budget delivers no growth in capacity, which means that the joint force will continue to consume readiness as quickly as it is produced. these increases in capacity are reflected in each services' unfunded requirements. true readiness is also modernization. because we if mortgage future capable pay for present commitments we have achieved little especially at a time when our adversaries are moving at an alarming rate to remove america's technological
advantage and calling into question our ability to produce power. this presents the old false choice between readiness and modernization. fact is, $603 billion is simply not enough to pay for both priorities, which is why the service's unfunded requirements are heavy on the procurement of new and additional capabilities that are desperately needed. all of this presents this committee and this congress with a significant choice. the administration's budget request is just that. a request. ultimately, it is our independent responsibility to authorize and appropriate funding for our military at levels and in ways we believe to be sufficient to provide for the common defense. i believe that this budget request is a start but we can and must do better. this will not be possible, however, as long as the budget
control act remains the law of the land. this defense budget request and the additional funding that our military needs is literally illegal under the budget control act. this law has done severe damage to our military. it has harmed the department's ability to plan an execute budgets effectively and efficiently. it has ground the budget processes to a halt. worst of all there are four more years of bca caps to go. we cannot go on like this. our men and women in uniform deserve better. it's time for congress to reinvest in our military, restore or ready new zealand capabilities, rebalance our joint force and renew america's military advantage. to do so , we must revise or repeal the budget control act. we must give our troops what they need to succeed today and in the future.
will the politics of this be difficult? yes. but the question all of us here must answer is, how much longer will we send our sons and daughters in harm's way unprepared before we get over our politics and do our jobs. senator reed? >> thank you. for holding this hearing and i want to welcome our distinguished witnesses this morning, thank you them for their service to the nation. i want to join with the chairman in paying tribute to the soldiers of the 101st who gave their lives and to their families. they're examples of thousands and thousands of americans who serve and the families at home who serve with them. the 2018 trump administration budget that seeks $564 billion in base funding.
the budget control act, the bca of 2011 and the sequester is the law of the land. and this budget request exceeds the bca's defense spending cap by $52 billion. rather than request an outright repeal, president trump recommends off setting it with nondefense spending. but unless the bca is changed, the offset will seriously harm non-defense spending and fail to prevent across the board cuts reclaiming the $52 billion, leaving d.o.d. in a worse position. we have already held hearings this year where we have been urged to remove the bca caps and end sequestration. like chairman mccain, i believe it is time to repeal the bca. setting arbitrary values has not made our country safer. nor do these caps which were set
nearly six years ago accurately reflect what a investment we need to keep america competitive and strong. i am not opposed to increased military spending. democrats have and will continue to support robust defense spending. but is it the duty of this committee to carefully review the budget proposal presented by the president to ensure that the funds are allocated properly so the fighting men and women have what they need to complete their mission and return home safely. every member takes this duty seriously. i also believe it must reflect our core values. and take care of americans who remain at home. our military personnel have a vision of the america they are fighting for and it is our duty to protect that. i have grave concerns about the budget request because it robs from peter to pay paul. it increases defense spending but eliminates $17.3 billion to
the efforts to prevent wars which is the very kind of spending that is so crucial to our military efforts. it slashes funding for health, like the nih and cdc and the fight against global public health epidemics before they reach the u.s. this budget request also eliminates programs that help vulnerable americans here at home. certainly our military needs additional resources to climb out of the readiness hole it is in. but i do not believe we should do so at the expense of diplomacy and vulnerable americans. i would also note over the last 15 years we have found it important enough to send our brave young men and women to war but we have not paid for these wars as this nation has historically done. as we look at what funding is
required, the bca between defense and nondefense spending has pitted each category of funding against the other. instead we'll be better served if we can the needs of the nation holistically. i also believe it would be best if we examine the request in the context of the overall national security strategy. such a strategy has not clearly emerged as we enter the sixth month of this administration. we seem to careen from one policy crisis to another, many of which are the administration's own making. this takes up valuable energy and attention when there are several significant challenges on which we need to be focused. secretary mattis and general humphries you have been consummate professionals and a steady hand in tumultuous times. but we face many difficult decisions strategic and budget air that demand the kind of leadership and engagement only a grounded and focused president can provide. i look forward to working with you and my colleagues as we address these important issues and proud that this committee has worked in a bipartisan
fashion during this process. i look forward to working with all the committee members. thank you very much mr. chairman. >> secretary mattis, welcome back. >> thank you. i appreciate the opportunity to testify in support of the president's budget request for fiscal year 2018. mr. chairman i request the committee accept my written statement for the record. i'm joined by chairman the department's new comptroller, david norquist. this holds me accountable to the men and women of the department of defense. every day more than two million service members and one million civilians do their duties. honoring previous general rags of veterans and civil servants
who have sacrificed for our country and i serve alongside them. we are keenly aware of the sacrifices made by americans to fund our military. many times in the past we have looked reality in the eye, met challenges with the help of congressional leadership and built the most capable war fighting force in the world. there is no room for complacency and we have no god-given right to victory on the battlefield. each generation of americans from the halls of congress to the battlefield earns victory through commitment and sacrifice. and yet, for four years the department of defense has been subjected to or threatened by automatic across the board cuts as a result of sequester, a mechanism meant to be so injurious to the military it would never go effect but it did go into effect and as forecast by this secretary of defense panetta the damage has been severe.
in addition, during nine of the last ten years, congress has had enacted 30 separate continuing resolutions to fund the department of defense thus inhibiting our readiness and adaptation to new challenges. we need bipartisan support for this budget request. in the past, by failing to pass a budget on time or to eliminate the threat of sequestration. congress sidelined itself from its active constitutional oversight role. continuing resolutions coupled with sequestration blocked new programs, prevented service growth, stalled industry initiative and placed troops at greater risks. despite the tremendous efforts of this committee, congress as a whole has met the present challenge with lass -- -- lassitude, not leadership. i refired from military service three months after sequestration
took effect. four years later i returned to the department and i've been shocked an what i've seen about our readiness to fight. while nothing can compare to the heartache caused by the loose -- loss of our troops in these wars, nobody in the field has done more to harm them as sequestration. our troops have shouldered a much greater burden but our troop's stoic commitment cannot reduce the growing risk. it took us years to get into this situation. it will require years of stable budgets and increased funding to get out of it. i urge members of this committee and congress to achieve three goals. first, fully fund our request. which required an increase to the defense budget caps. second pass the fiscal 2018 budget in a timely manner to
avoid yet another harmful -- and third eliminate the threat of future sequestration. stable budgets and increased funding are necessary because of four external factors acting on the department at the same time. the first force acting on us that we must recognize is 16 years of war. when congress approved the all volunteer force in 1973, our country never envisioned sending our military to war for more than a decade without pause or conscription. american's long war has placed a heavy burden on men and women in uniform an their families. a second force working on the department is the worsening global security situation the chairman has spoke about. we must look reality in the eye. russia and china are seeking veto power on the diplomatic and
security decisions on their periphery. their actions continue. while iran remains the largest long term challenge to mideast stability. all the while, terrorists murder the innocent and threaten peace in many regions while targeting us. third force is adversaries actively contesting america's capabilities. for decades the united states unjoyed uncontested or dominant superiority in every operating domain or realm. we could deploy our forces when we wanted and operate how we wanted. today every operating domain, outer space, air, sea, undersea, land, and cyberspace, is contested. a fourth concurrent force is rapid technological change. technological change is one that necessitates new investment,
innovated approaches and new program starts that have been denied us by law when we have been forced to operate under continuing resolutions. each of these four forces, 16 years of war, the worsening security environment, contested operations in multiple domains and the rapid pace of technological change requires stable budgets and increased funding to provide for the protection of our citizens and for the survival of our freedoms. i reiterate that security and solvency are the watch words. as secretary of defense. the fundamental responsibility of our government is to defend the american people, providing for our security and we cannot defend america and help others if our nation is not both strong and solvent. so we in the department of defense owe it to the american public to ensure we spend each dollar wisely. president trump has nominated for senate approval specific
individuals who will bring proven skills to discipline our department's fiscal processes to ensure we do so. this first step to restoring readiness is underway thanks to congress's willingness to support the administration's request for an additional $21 billion in resources for fiscal year 2017 to address vital war fighting readiness short falls. your support put more aircraft in the air, troops in the sea and troops in the field. we all recognize it will take a number of years of higher funding delivered on time to restore readiness. to strengthen the military president trump requested a $639 billion top line for the fy 2018 defense budget. this year's budget reflects five priorities. the first priority is continuing to improve war fighter readiness begun in 2017. filling in the holes from tradeoffs made during 16 years
of war, nine years of continuing resolutions and budget control act caps. the second priority is increasing capacity and lethality while preparing for future investment. our fiscal year 2018 budget request insures the nation's current nuclear deterrent will be sustained and supports continuation of its much-needed modernization process. the third priority is reforming how the department does business. i'm devoted to gaining full value from every dollar that has been paid to defense thus earning the trust of congress and the american people. we have begun implementation of a range of reform and initiatives directed by the 2017 national defense authorization track and we are on track to enter a full financial statement audit as required by statute.
i urge congress to support the department's request for authority to conduct a 2021 base realignment and closure or background. i recognize the careful deliberation that members must exercise in considering this. but bract is one of the most successful efficiency programs that we have. a properly based closure effort will generate $2 billion or more annually and over a five-year period, that would be enough to buy 300 apache attack helicopters, 120 f-18 super hornets or four virginia-class submarines. the fourth priority in the budget request is keeping faith with service members and families. talented people are the company's most valued asset. to ensure the military is the most capable war fighting force
in the world. investment in military compensation, blended retirement, the military health system and family programs are essential to fielding the talent we need to sustain our competitive advantages on the battlefield. our fifth priority is support for overseas contingency operations. the fiscal year 2018 budget request $64.6 billion focussing on operations in afghanistan, iraq and syria. increasing efforts to sustain's nato's defenses to deter aggression and global counterterrorism operations. isis and other terrorist organizations represent a clear and present danger and i am encouraged by the willingness of our allies and partners to share the burden of this campaign alongside us. moving forward, the fy 2019
budget will have to make hard voices as we shape the with 2019 budget will have to make hard choices as we shaw shape the 2019 to 2020 defendants program. the department will work with president trump, congress and this committee to ensure future budget requests are both sustainable and provide the commander in chief with viable military options that support america's security. in summation, first i need the bca caps lifted and a budget. not a continuing resolution. passed on time. and elimination of future sequestration cuts so we can provide a stable and adequate way ahead on budgets. for those concerned we are not asking for sufficient dollars consider the following, for 2017 as a supplemental we asked for $30 billion and the congress provided $21 billion for our administration to address
readiness shortfalls. second, this fiscal year, president trump has requested $574 billion plus $29 billion in the department of energy budget, plus $65 billion for overseas contingency operations. this is a 5% growth over what the department had for 2017. this request is $52 billion above the budget control act defense caps. we have underway at this time a national security strategy review and that will give us the analytic rigger to come back to you for the fy '19 to fy '23 budget requests that we'll lay out in our written statements. i am keenly aware that each of you understands the responsibility we share to make sure the military is ready to fight today and in the future. i need your help to inform your
fellow members of congress about the realities facing our military and the need for congress as a whole to pass a defense budget on time. thank you, members of the committee for your strong support over many years and ensuring our troops have the resources and equipment they need to fight and win on the battlefield. i pledge to collaborate closely with you for the defense of our nation in our joint effort to keep our armed forces second to none. thank you, ladies and gentlemen. >> chairman dunford is prepared to discuss the military dimensions of the budget request. >> general dunford. >> chairman mccain, thank you for the opportunity to join secretary mattis and undersecretary norquist today. it's because of them i can say can confidence that your armed forces remain the most capable in the world. the competitive advantage that that the united states military has long enjoyed is eroding. in a number of factors have
contributed to that erosion. since 9/11 an extraordinarily high level of operational tempo has accelerated the wear and tear of our weapons and equipment. meanwhile, budget instability and a budget control act has forced the government to operate with far fewer resources than required for the strategy of record. as a consequence we priorityize near-term readiness at the expense of replacing aged equipment. we maintain a force that assumes force as soon as we build it. while rebuilding and maintaining full spectrum readiness. the secretary and the service chiefs have addressed it in their testimonies. and i fully conquer with their assessments. but beyond that we're confronted with another challenge which i assess to be now at near term. what we have been focused on the
threat of violent extremist our adversaries have developed advanced capabilities and operational approaches specifically designed to limit our ability to project power. they recognize that our ability to project power is what we need to defend the homeland and advance our interests. secretary mattis alluded to, china, and iran and fielded a wide range of cyber, space, and aviation, maritime and land capabilities, specifically designed to limit our ability to deploy, employ, and sustain our forces. russia and china have modernized a nuclear arsenal and north korea has been on the path of a nuclear icbm that can reach the united states. in a few years well lose our qualitative and competitive evacuation. it will affect our nuclear deterrents, conventional
deterrents and our ability to respond if deterrence fails. we can main our competitive advantage with sustained and predictable funding. to that end the fy '18 budget is a critical step. however, this request alone will not fully restore readiness or arrest the emotion of our competitive advantage. doing that is going to require sustained investment along 2018. specific recommendations will be informed by the national defense strategy however we know know that continued growth in the base budget at least 3% above the inflation is the floor we need to assume the competitive advantage we have today. as we ask for your support, we recognize the responsibility to maintain the trust of the american taxpayer. we take this responsibility seriously and we continue to eliminate redundancies and achieve efficiencies where possible. thank you for allowing me to appear before you this morning
and more importantly thank you for ensuring that american sons and daughters never find themselves in a fair fight. with that, chairman, i'm prepared to take questions. >> secretary norquist. >> mr. chairman, i have no separate opening remarks. >> thank you. secretary mattis, complete received unfunded requirement list from each of the military services, amounted to more than $31 billion. have you reviewed those unfunded requirements list? >> i have, chairman. >> do you agree these are military requirements that should be funded? >> chairman, i think we have our priorities right in the base budget but i've reviewed the uncovered requirements. it's $30 billion. i think if we received more money i think those requests are appropriate. >> i guess my question is is it request that we give you $31 billion more? >> chairman, i'm here to defend
the budget as it stands because i can defend every priority there. if the congress were to allocate additional funds to national defense, i believe the unfunded priority list gives good priorities. >> so you're satisfied with what is basically a 3% increase in budgetary requirements. >> chairman, when it comes to defense, sir, at this point, i think the president's budget is allocated appropriately to the priorities. the priorities listed by the service chiefs as we go more deeply into the readiness challenge or certainly i -- are certainly well tuned to what we need. i'd be happy to see more money if the congress was to allocated
additional funds and along the lines of the unfunded priority list. >> well, i appreciate your willingness to cooperate but a lot of times we depend on your recommendations in order to -- in shaping our authorization and appropriation. >> yes, sir. i can't think of any priority i'd put in place in the unfunded priorities list if we were given additional money, sir. that would be a decision by you. i have to represent the president's budget since he's having to deal with a wider portfolio than just defense. >> will this 3% increase give you the confidence that we need that we are doing everything we can to make sure that our men and women serving in uniform are adequately equipped and trained and ready to fight? >> chairman, it took a good many years to get into the hole we're in. it will not be enough in itself
to take us where we need to go. it's going to be a campaign. as i laid out that started with our request for an additional $30 billion during this fiscal year. the growth that we have in the 2018 budget and when i get done with the defense strategy and review that we'll be coming back to you for more and probably along the lines of close to 5% growth. 3% to 5% growth through 2023. but it will not take us the whole way. it's in the right direction. >> mid june, congress hasn't passed a fiscal year 2018 budget, something that should embarrass every money of the senate and the house. there's no resolution of the top line. this body knows what needs to be done. a bipartisan resetting of the levels, but the there's no such work. if we don't do it today, the --
it's likely the military will once again begin the fiscal year on a continuing resolution. what would be the impacts of starting this year on a continuing resolution at the budget control act levels of $52 billion less than your request? >> chairman, it can only worsen the readiness situation we face now, which has been laid out starkly, i believe, by the service chiefs, if we go in with a continuing resolution. >> first conversation you and i had was about a strategy for afghanistan. we're now six months into this administration. we still haven't got a strategy for afghanistan. it makes it hard for us to support you when we don't have a strategy. we know what the strategy was for the last eight years. don't lose. it hasn't worked. just mentioned in my opening statement, we just lost three brave americans.
when can we expect the congress of the united states to get a strategy for afghanistan that is a departure from the last eight years, which is, don't lose? >> i believe by mid july we'll be able to brief you in detail, sir. we're putting it together now. and there are going to be -- there are actions being taken to make certain that we don't pay a price for the delay, but we recognize the need for urgency and your criticism is fair, sir. >> well, i'm a great admirer of yours, mr. secretary and so are those men and women who have had the honor of serving under you, but we just can't keep going like this. you can't expect us to fulfill the three requirements that you gave, funding increase, pass the
budget, present a stable budget if you don't give us a strategy. i hope you understand that i'm not criticizing you, but there are problems within this administration. i was confident within the first 30 to 60 days we would have a strategy from which to start working. so all i can tell you is that unless we get a strategy from you, you're going to get a strategy from us. and i appreciate our wisdom and knowledge and information and all of the great things with the exception of some to my left here, but the fact is, it's not our job. it's not our job. it's yours, and i have to tell you the frustration that i feel is obviously palpable because it's hard for us to act when you
don't give us a strategy which then leads to policy which then leads to authorization, which is our job. so i hope you understand that we're going to start getting more vocal in our criticism of not having a strategy for afghanistan. do you agree that we're not winning in afghanistan? >> sir, i understand the urgency? i understand it's my responsibility. we're not winning in afghanistan right now and we will correct this as soon as possible. i believe the three things we are asking for stand on their own merit, however as we look more broadly at the protection of the country. but in no way does that relieve me of the need to deliver that strategy to you, sir. >> i thank you, general, and i understand very well, as do members of this committee, that some of this is beyond your control. but at some point we have to
say, look, congress and the american people owe -- congress owes the american people a strategy which will then lead to success in afghanistan. i am sure that the three games that i just mentioned in my opening statement, their parents and their wives and their husbands, their families, their members of their family, are very aware that we have no strategy. so let's not ask these families to sacrifice any further without a strategy which we can then take and implement and help you. i'm fighting as hard as i can to increase defense spending. it's hard when we have no strategy to pursue. i hope you understand that dilemma that you are presenting to us. >> sir, i do, sir.
>> thank you very much mr. chairman. mr. secretary, as we discussed in your testimony and in our -- the chairman and my testimony, even if you get the additional $52 billion, with sequestration in place you would essentially have to turn around and forfeit that in across the board cuts. is that your understanding? >> yes, sir. >> and those across the board cuts would be more disruptive than anything i could perceive. because there would be no prioritization it would just be taking from the most sensitive programs. is that correct? >> that's correct, sir. it would be injurious and it would sideline this committee and myself in making wise decisions. >> did you make that point to the president in terms of ultimate consultation about this budget in his role as commander in chief? >> i can assure you president
trump is keenly aware of this situation. >> what is his position on sequestration? >> i'd prefer to speak to mine, sir because i can speak most authoritatively there. bottom line is the administration believes that the congress has to repeal the budget control act and the sequestration that follows. >> but wouldn't it be not only appropriate but essential that that be incorporated in the president's budget, because the ramifications of sequestration are clearly played out in every aspect of the budget and remaining silent as we did in the budget leaves a lot of people wondering what is his real position or does he even understand what's going on? >> senator reed, we're part of the executive branch and article i of the constitution gives you the authority to deal with that
very situation. so i -- and i think we all know what needs to be done. to be do from republicans and democrats on this committee for a long time. >> but the interesting thing is i haven't heard of a clarg call from the president and also a practical and responsible solution as to not only how we undo the bca but then how do you allocate resources between defense spending, domestic spend spending and other spending. and without that it goes in the same trajectory of no strategy, there's no budgetary strategy here it's just congress do something. and i think the chairman's point is it's very late in the game and the ability for us just institutionally to rewrite a budget, to reallocate resources between defense and nondefense, to increase defense spending without any guideline for framework from the administration, it's not
impossible, it's very difficult. do you sense that? >> senator reed, we've submitted a presidential budget for the department of defense. we believe that is guidance. we've submitted the unfunded priority list from the pentagon in accordance with the will of congress, and we believe that is guidance for what we need. >> i -- just let me final point, mr. secretary, i do like all my colleagues respect you immensely, but the budget that's submitted will not work. if nothing is done to change bca and sideline bca, the $52 billion we give you we will take back, in fact, in a more harmful fashion even if we didn't give it to you if we just left the bca levels at least you could prioritize. let me change gears for a moment. have you received a direction you and your colleagues in the national security agencies from the president to begin intense planning and preparation for
what appears to be inevitable renewal of cyber attacks by russia against the united states particularly in the context of elections? have you received any guidance? >> we are in constant contact the national security staff on this and we're engaged not just in discussing the guidance but in actual defensive measures, sir. >> and has that guidance, the president has clearly laid out in some type of authoritative way the mission to protect the country in this respect or is it something that's just collateral to your discussions? >> senator, i'm under no confusion whatsoever of my responsibilities and the organizations i have, national security agency and cyber command about what with are supposed to be doing right now. and we're taking active steps on that that i can brief you on in closed hearing. >> so your and general dunford i
think you testified previously that russia represents the most significant threat to the united states not only in their new aerial denial systems that you i think alluded to but also in their cyber operations. is that still your position? >> it is, senator. and i included a nuclear capability as well as their behavior. >> and again finally my last few seconds, do you believe that's the position of the president of the united states, that russia particularly in all these new dimensions is the most significant threat to the united states? mr. secretary. >> sir, i prefer to let him speak for himself on that. i can assure you that from law enforcement to the intelligence agencies and all that information is available and briefed to the president, we're recognizing the strategic threat that russia has provided by its misbehavior. >> but you remembering mize it, the question is does he
recognize it? >> sir, i've had full support for example for the european reassurance initiative where we're sending more troops to europe they are not being sent there for any other reason than to temper russians desires. i've had full sip support on the things that we have had to do in order to address russia's choices. >> thank you, mr. secretary. thank you, gentlemen. >> thank you, gentleman, thank you for your service. let me just say this about sequestration. when i think about the failure of this congress and this government to deal with this, i look in the mirror and i take my share of the responsibility. one thing that hasn't been said is that the reason we got the sequestration to start with is that there's two-thirds of american spending that's on autopilot. it's very popular programs, the
entitlement programs, medicare, medicaid, social security, and of course interest on the debt. and sequestration was meant to focus us on that two-thirds of the budget that we don't deal with every year. we have been unwilling politically to do that on both sides of the aisle. and until we do that, we're not going to really be able to get back to the problem that got us to sequestration to start with. but let me talk about something secretary mattis, that might save us a good deal of money. and that is multiyear procurement authority. which is assumed in your budget proposals for destroyers, fast attack submarines, and v-22 aircraft. it's my understanding that the cost assessment and program evaluation office or cape, that the navy and omb all agree that
savings could be significant if we go with multiyear procurement authority, but we lack at this point a preliminary determination to begin to implement this. a final determination can come later, but we need the preliminary determination. so are you aware of this situation, secretary mattis? do you agree that the assumption in your budget is correct and that this will save money and you can help us on this? >> senator, i have no doubt it would save money to have multiyear procurement, especially of things that take a lot of steel, a lot of equipment to build. the economy's of scale allow for enormous savings. we would have to have a repeal of the bca act in order to give the confidence to industry they can buy that stuff and it won't
sit in the ship yard when funding dries up the next year. so it, again, we come right back around to the very thing that chairman and ranking member have just been discussing about what bca does to us. it removes the chance for even wise investment of the money you give us, sir. >> but at this point, the immediate situation is that i need you to commit to this committee that you'll intervene to ensure that we get the preliminary determination necessary to move us forward at that point. we don't need to repeal bca to get that done, will you up us on that? >> we will help you, yes, sir. >> all right. thank you very much. now, let me ask you in the remaining time, i appreciate what has been said about winning in afghanistan. now, i notice over the last few days a group of my colleagues have -- have advocated just tps
it's been too long we need to look at the timetable, decade and a half has been too long we need to pull out and let afghanistan take care of itself. let me just say i think that would be a massive mistake which would affect security of americans. i hope you agree with that. so if you could comment on that, but also define for us what winning in afghanistan means and if we -- if we're successful there and have a follow-on force that's not involved in combat much as we have had for 70 years in europe and a long, long time in south korea, that would be certainly something that i could live with. but if you'd comment on that. >> i believe you're correct that to walk away from this we've
already seen what can come out of these kind of spaces, these ungoverned spaces. the problems that originate there do not stay there. they come out, they threaten all of us, they threaten the world order, they threaten our economy, they threaten our very country. as far as what does winning look like, the afghan government with international help will be able to handle the violence, drive it down to a level that local security forces could handle it, and with our allies it would probably, i residual force doing training and maintaining the high-end capability so that the threats should they mature we can take them down and keep this at a level of threat that the local government and the local security forces can handle. it's going to be an era of frequent skirmishing and it's going to, i a change in our
approach from the last several years if we're to get it to that position. >> do the people of afghanistan want us there? >> there's no doubt the majority do, sir. the reason the taliban use bombs is because they cannot win at the ballot box and they know that and the people do want us there and that's based on loya jerga outcome that's the rather large assembly of local and prevent chal and national level leaders, plus it's based on polls not run by the united states but by other organizations. and i have no doubt the majority want us there, not all of them do, but the ones who don't are not the ones who are looking forward to afghanistan's future as we think it ought to look. we and the afghan people. >> thank you, sir. thank you, mr. chairman. i want to continue the line of questioning that was started by the ranking member. i'm deeply concerned about the
success of russian information warfare efforts influencing the course of the 2016 elections here in the united states as well as its efforts to destabilize democracies across the globe had the how is the department working with other from the agencies to counter russian information warfare in the united states and the hacking of our electoral systems and how are you working with our partners and allies to fight these efforts? secretary mattis. >> yeah. first of all, ma'am, there is constant information flow defining the problem as critical because they try to do it in a deniable manner. so we work inside our inner agency effort, law enforcement everything from fbi and any other police organization that gets information on this, but it's mostly been fbi, our intelligence agencies work together too. we have good sharing of information and we also work with our allies sharing information back and forth. and you've seen some of that,
some of it can be released, you'll see it in the nuewspaper about what's going on in other elections in europe. >> bloomberg said rug russia attempted to hack 39 states and alter data though was not successful. they suggested that gru attacked a company that provides software to eight states including new york. attackers then used that information, they stole to launched targeted attacks against 122 local officials just 12 days before the election. this information highlights the urgent need to protect our elections infrastructure from cyberattack going forward protect our democratic process. during the last election several national guard ients assessed the state's election systems for these types of intrusions. do you think there's a role for the national guard with its unique authorities in securing election systems? >> there may be, ma'am. i think our organization right
now is still adapting to this new domain. one of the reason we don't want continuing resolutions because we have to do new things. i also assume in something like this that what you've just outlined is not the whole problem, it's worse. >> and do you think we should consider a 9/11 style commission to just do a deep dive on where are our cyber vulnerabilities, what are the ten things we need to do to prevent cyberattack in the future in the same way the 9/11 committee made recommendations over the last decade they did have an impact on how to protect against future terrorism. >> senator, i'd have to look at what is the problem we're trying to solve. i think reorganization of cyber command and nsa along the lines that have been proposed by the congress i think that also is part of the defining the problem and defining the defensive measures that we need to take. >> but would you recommend --
>> but i would not be against something like that. i'd have to look at what the specific problem is, it would be assigned do. >> to just make recommendations to prevent another cyber hack of our elections, just the same way the 9/11 commission did it. basically impaneling nonpartisan experts in sieber to come up with the ten things we need to do. >> yeah, i'll just tell you we have efforts underway to do these very things right now, but at the same time i'm not zbens what you're proposing. >> okay. i want to talk a little bit about sort of the world order in my last minute and a half. president trump's decision to withdraw from the paris climate agreement was just one of the several signals to the world that the administration is repositioning the united states not as a global leader but as a country focused exclusively on its interests. upon his return national security adviser h.r. mcmaster and gary cone wrote in the washington journal that they had a clear yoit look that the world is not a global community but an
arena where nations noun global actors and business compete for advantage. our defense strategy has been predicated on working with allies to main taint stanlt of different regions of the world and yet this open ed suggests we would only work with allooids lies and partners when it suits us. is the department redrawing its strategy against this new paradigm? >> we do work by, with, and through allies. we have alliances, and bilateral agreements. >> i think we will continue to be working alongside others, greatest generation came home from world war ii and said like it or not we're part of the world and that is a philosophy that guides our foreign policy as well as our military policy. >> admiral mike mcmullin former chairman of the joint chiefs and jim jones just wrote an opinion piece on the same topic. and you said something similar several years ago that the less we invest in diplomacy the more
reinsfleft bullets. do you still agree with that? >> it's gotting to a whole government approach, absolutely. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, mr. chair mab and good morning, gentleman. i'd like to thank you both for your service and for being here today. first i would like to note my appreciation for this budget's strong support for nuclear modernization and the comments that both of you made on this issue in your prepared comments and i know mr. secretary you alluded to that in your opening statement as well. i was pleased to see the department's request reflect the necessary prioritization for that are nuclear modernization so thank you for that. general, in your opening statement you said that you assessed that within five years we will lose our ability to project power. can you put that in context? what is being unable to project power due to our ability to protect our homeland and deter conflict, meet our obligations
to our allies, article five under nato, for example? >> again, senator, from my perspective really since the 1990s china, russia, other countries have studied u.s. capabilities from mu anythings to our ability to project power. we identify that as we call it our center of gravity but our source of strength the ability to project power when and if necessary. we think that plays an important role in deterrence, it plays an important role in assuring our allies that we can meet our alliance commitments. if the specific areas we're invested in, antiship cruise missiles, electronic warfare capabilities, cyber capabilities, all focus to prevent from us projecting power when and where necessary to accomplish our objectives. so they want to keep us from getting into the area and this is both the case of russia with regard to our nato alliances and china are regard to meeting our commitments in the pacific. they want to keep us from being
able to deploy forces into the area and operate freely within the area. so i talk about competitive advantage, in my judgment, the problem that we're trying to solve is to continue to be able to do what we've have historically been able to do and that's simply to project power when and where necessary. i mentioned the role it plays in assuring our allies and meeting our commitments i also believe that source of strength plays a very important role in deterring potential add sayries from initiating provocation or conflict. >> you mentioned that five-year period. do you believe it's in doubt now? >> it's eroding now. we have historically had the ability do that, you know, not uncontested but in a decisive way. i think our competitive advantage has erodesed. we would be challenged in projecting power today. we've done an analysis looking function by function at our current capabilities. our add sayry's current capabilities, the path of capability development that we're on and the path of
capability development that our add sayries are on and what we've seen is an erosion in the past ten years in our judgment would get to the point where we would suffer significant casualties and significant time delays in meeting our object tiftsds and projecting power in five years. >> in five years. do you think now that regardless of our intent we didn't have the capability to act unless we change the path we're on? >> senator, i don't think there's any question that unless with we change the path we're on we're going to be at a disadvantage. >> that's pretty consequential, isn't it? >> to me, it affects our ability to deter conflict, it affects the confidence that our allies have in our ability to meet our commitments and at the end of the day it makes it a more dangerous world because both nuclear deterrence and conventional deterrence would be unaffected. >> if we're unable to meet needs of the force that we have now that they are incapable or that they are not ready, do you
believe that any leader will send that force into battle? >> i think it would be very difficult for a leader to send a force in battle when his military leadership would articulate the risk associated with doing that. i did want to make kwleer, i believe we have a competitive advantage over any potential add sayry today and what i'm doing snou projecting into the future based on a trend line that we've seen over the past decade where we will be if we don't turn it around. >> thank you. and secretary mattis, in the last four weeks the united states has conducted three strikes against proregime forces that threaten coalitions soldiers in syria. i do have your assurance that we're going to take any and all measures necessary to protect our forces in that area? >> absolutely, senator, those are self-defense strikes and the commander on the ground has the authority to take whatever action necessary. and i support that. >> and during your confirmation hearing, you talked about how russia had chosen to be a
strategic competitor and with respect to engagement with russia you stated i'm all for engagement but we also have to recognize reality and what russia is up to and there's a decreasing number of areas where we can engage cooperatively and an increasing number of areas where we're going to have to confront russia. do you believe this is still an accurate characterization of russia's behavior? >> i think to a very modest expectations for finding areas of cooperation right now with russia until they change their behavior. >> thank you, sir. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. mr. chair, first i want to associate myself with the views of 16 former senior military leaders who submitted a letter today in support of foreign assistance and specifically they made the following point. quote, proactive conflict prevention strategies are far less expensive in terms of resources and lives expended
then reactive use of our armed forces, end quote. and this is signed by a number of fol folks we'll all recognize from general breed love to admiral mullin to general petreaus to general mccrystal. i think we should keep that in mind when we review the president's budget which i believe is particularly short sided with regard to foreign assistance. i want to move now, secretary mattis, to something you said the at your confirmation hearing in january. i asked you for your assessment of the key threats to our vital interests and in what priority level, and you said that the principal threats start with russia. do you still view russia as a significant threat to the united states? >> yes, senator, i do. >> how -- can you walk us through a little bit how this year's budget request invests in the resource areas, the programs and the initiatives that can help counter those threats posed by russia? >> senator, i think the european
reassurance initiative alone of $4.8 billion is designed with one target in mind, that is to dissuade russia from thinking that this is a time when they want to test nato or the americans. i would also point out that in terms of technology we are looking at specific technologies that address some of the maturing threats that they have, air, space, under water, that sort of thing. and i think, too, that the investment and prepositioned equipment that allows us to move forces quickly into an area would cause a change in their strategic calculus as far as the risk from their behavior from their perspective would go up. there's also a fair amount of ground munitions and airfield enhancements that are going on specifically targeted to your concern, senator. >> i want to thank you for that.
i think those are all very important investments. one of my concerns is that the russians employed a set of host i will, highly asymmetrical tools during our election last year and that for the cost of a fraction of the single ship they were able to be use very low-cost tools like hackers, trolls, and social media bots to manipulate our media and penetrate our political and election structures. do we have an overall strategy to meet that threat either in cyber com or as a whole of government approach? >> sir, we have vulnerability assessments and anal sees going on that cause us to buttress our defenses in different areas, to shift our filtering of information and to shift our focus to our intelligence
services to define the problems to a level that we can figure out what to do about them. so is there an overall strategy? we are working on a broader strategy that this would be part of but right now we have enough definition that we don't have to delay taking steps at this time intel wisewi intelwise and defensewise against the threat. >> should there been consequence when's russia does this kind of thing? >> absolutely. that's a decision that has to be taken by the commander and chief and certainly with the congress's support and involvement. but i think that this sort of misbehavior has got to face consequences and not just by the united states, but more broadly. >> i couldn't agree more. i want to shift to -- shift gears a little bit in my last 40 seconds or so. you know my interest in directed
energy weapons systems, they have enormous potential to be a game changer, the kind of thing that we've seen change sim metro or asim metro in the past of our war fighters. last year's defense bill instructs the secretary of defense to designate a senior official at the pentagon to have principal response ability for the development and transition of directed energy weapons systems. as of today, it's my understanding that this position remains unfilled. secretary, i can have your commitment today to meet this requirement and to assign someone that's critical responsibility at the pentagon? >> yes, sir. thank you for bringing it up. i didn't know i had that responsibility. i'm learning more every day. but i will -- if that's a responsibility you assigned, it will be done. i will tell you that right now i've been briefed on directive energy r&d and advances so i know people are working it right now. but if we haven't filled that line number of assignment i'll
get on to it. >> i appreciate that very much. thank you, mr. chair. >> thank you, gentlemen. i want to associate myself with the remarks about our budget picture that secretary mattis had and that chairman mccain had. i will say i agree with chairman mccain i think the president's budget is inadequate to the threats we face but the more fundamental problem is the budget control act and the simple solution, colleagues, is to repeal the budget control act from senator fisher all the way down to my right and senator donnelly all the way down ton senator peters, not a single one of us was here in the summer of 2011 and voted for that bill. the budget control act is not the constitution and the 112th congress was not the constitutional convention. we should simply repeal it. now some people say it's going to increase the deficit, but it's not going to go into effect. we know that. we know exactly what will happen. we will have a continuing resolution in september, we'll have some kind of two-year
budget in october or november, we will have an omnibus in december of 2017, an omnibus in december of 2018 and then we'll do it all again in 2019. let's repeal the gugt budget control act and take our responsibilities seriously and own up for our annual budgeting cycle. and i would urge all the democrats and all the republicans on this committee to work together to do so in the senate itself. now, off my soapbox. mr. secretary, open sky's treaty allows for aerial surveillance of military forces, u.s. and russia are both parties, however, according to state department russia has not been playing ball lately, they're denying the united states overflight of certain parts of their territory. >> i know we had sought resolution with russia on these matters but my understanding is those efforts have come up empty. do you believe that the u.s. believe that russia is in violation of the open skies treaty? >> we are meeting on that issue. i've been briefed on it and we'll be meeting with state
department and national security staff here in the very near future. there certainly appears to be violations of it, but, you know, i've got to go into the meeting and figure out that i've got all the information. >> would you care to elaborate in an unclassified manner this setting on the nature of those violations sfl there are areas that have been -- we've been prevented from overflying. i think some of the other aspect of it i'd prefer to talk privately with you. but that's one of the clear, to me, violations. >> could we get your commitment to submit response on the record classified or unclassified as appropriate once you've had those consultations? >> i prefer to do it even before i had the constul sultation, i'll get it to you right away. >> i can tell you what we know right now, what we believe right now and then we can update you later, sir. >> that's fine if we could get that on the record in writing.
general dunford, while we're on the topic of russian treaty violations, ucom commander testified in march saying russia has repeatedly violated international agreements and threats that underpin european peace and stability including the intermediate forces treaty and the treaty on russia and europe. do you agree they're in violation of both of those treaties? >> i do, senator. >> so let's put this plainly, then. if vladimir putin wanted he could hold u.s. troops in europe at risk with nuclear armed cruise missiles and our only choices would be one we send 30-year-old f-16 been 30-year-old nuclear weapons against state of the art defenses or we have a chance to escalate a tactical response to a strategic one by sending long range bombers or intercontinental missiles is that the situation we face if the yukon right now. >> that's the situation why we've argued that and make sure
we have an effective deterrent and response. >> one of the modernization priorities is the cruise launch missile is going on 40 years now. general silva said a decade from now outcomes will not be able to penetrate russian air defense dollars 57d there's an urgency. given the imbalance between russia and nuclear sforss do you agree it's an urgent priority to replace the outcome with at long range stand off cruise missile. >> as you know we're going through nuclear posture right now. what i who say is this the third leg of the try add, the bomber, needs to be able to penetrate, these to be able to achieve effects and that's the criteria we should have going into the review. >> thank you. to conclude we had admiral harris from pay com in a few weeks ago as well. he pointed out that although china is obviously not a party to the inf treaty, if they were over 90% of their missiles would be banned by if the so the situation we face is the int treaty gives china lethal
advantage over the pacific, russia is outright ignoring the inf treaty in europe, we have no matching response to either of those threats and if we did it would be ill lalg because we're literal lit only nation in the world are restrains itself from developing intermediate cruise missiles, is that right? >> it is. that's in that category of nax and syria denial that we discussed earlier where the large number of missiles that they have to do present a problem to us. >> skrooemz seems a critical strategic problem that we face i know you're working to addressty hope we can do everything possible to help. >> you senator it's a wide range in the fy '18 budget and frankly we sergeant in '17 large range of capability areas resources designed specifically for those challenges that you've articulated. >> thank you, mr. chairman and thank you to our witnesses for being here today. i want to ask about what's
happening dween cutter and its neighbors. last week saudi arabia suffered all diplomatic and ties with cutter and almost immediately berained the uae, egypt, and yemen did the same. this crisis began in part because it was reportsed that the leader of cutter gave a speech praising iran and criticizing other countries in the region. now it appears that that was fake news. and that the leader of cutter gave no such speech. now the media has reported that the fbi believes that it was actually the russians who planted the story. i don't want to ask a question that depends on classified information so let me ask this question instead. if the news reports are accurate, what motive would the russians have had for doing something like that? mr. secretary, might you be able to answer that? >> i think a disruption of the
international order is something that russia in a short sighted way works to their benefit. >> i think it does not but i can't speak for them. >> i think what you're seeing here, though, is continued -- the continued prevalence of threats not just to our own country, not just to western europe democracies, but they're trying to break any kind of multilateral alliance, i think, that is a stabilizing influence in the world. >> sure. good. and i hope -- good in terms of your description. this is very helpful and i hope we're going to be able to get to the bottom of this. in our intelligence agencies have told us that the russians conducted a successful cyberattack against our 2016 elections, few months later the russians tried do the same thing in france and now tai peers they're trying to take this to a whole new level. so i also, though, like to ask for your help to clarify the
such u.s. policy on this dispute. after the saudis cut off ties the president tweeted his support for the move saying so good to see the saudi arabia visit with the king and 50 countries already paying off. but soon afterwards secretary of state tillerson called on those countries to ease the cutter blockade saying it was, quote, hindering u.s. military operations in the region and the campaign against isis. then in testimony to this committee air force secretary contradicted secretary tillerson and said that the dispute was, in fact, not impacting air operations at our base in cutter. secretary mattis, you can please clarify what is the policy of the united states government toward the current dispute among gulf countries in the middle
east? >> yes, ma'am. senator, the secretary of the air force was referring to the operations at that one air base. >> okay. >> there's more than that going on in the region, so she was quite correct in what she was saying about that. secretary tillerson was nonetheless correct as he looked more broadly at the situation where we have to work with many of those what we call gulf cooperation council states together. we have friends in the region, senator, who have problems. they admit it. one of the issues that came up and when president trump visited saudi arabia was their effort to turn off the spread of rab bied ideologies that undercut stability and krooe create the ocean? which the terrorists swim. that sort of thing. so we have friends out there, we've got to work with them. our policy is to try to reduce this problem but at the same time we've got to make certain that we're all working together
and there is no funding whether it be from a state or from individuals in the state who can get away with it because there's a lock of oversight or law, that sort of thing. there's a lot of passion at play here, it's not tiedy as we deal with it. >> and i understand it that cutter needs to do more to fight terrorism in the field and i just want to make sure i clarified the point and understood it correctly. general dunford, is the cutter blockade affecting u.s. military operations? >> senator, it is not and we're watching that very, very closely. but we've had good cooperation from all the parties to make sure that are we can continue to move freely in and out of cutter where we have both an important air base as well as the headquarters for the united states central command. >> good. thank you very much. just want to say this will cyber threat appears to be getting bigger and bigger, more and more dangerous taking on multiple permanent mutations. i think that means it's really
important and i'm going to ask you later for an update on the status of trying to implement the -- our cyber command elevation. but this is something we've got to fight back against. >> we're on track with elevation. >> good. >> it's going fine. i don't see any issues there. there's some other things about splitting them that we're working through, but we'll work through it. >> good. powerfully important. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. gentlemen, thank you for your service to our country. general mattis, secretary mattis, do you see any way that the current budget could be operational with the budget control act still in existence? >> i believe congress is going to have to remove the budget control act in order for that to happen. so for this budget to go through. >> would it be pair to say that a continuing resolution has never saved money with regard to
any of the defense programs? >> sir, i guarantee you continuing resolutions cost us more money for less capability. >> last week dr. wilson and general goldfein talked about the b-21 program and reiterated the importance that it stay on time and on budget. the program ramps up next year from 1.3 billion to $2 billion requested for 2018. i also understand that a cr or a return to bca funding levels could jeopardize funding for this and ultimately affect the timely fielding of this critical component of our future and national security. general dunford, you just mentioned the fact that we absolutely have to have the long-range strike bomber with regards to our plans for differing any type of weapons against the upgraded threats of our peer competitors. would you care to comment on the need for the continuation on a timely basis of the development
of the b-21? >> senator, i can't comment on the timing. what i can tell is you we've done three nuclear posture reviews since 2010 that i'm aware of. all of them have val dated the need for a try add and emphasized the need for a bomber that had assured access. and so completely supportive of that and i know that general goldfein and the secretary air force have testified to the chal evenings as to the timing of b-21 and i think have assured the committee that their leadership will be decisive in that program. >> thank you. secretary mattis, for more than a year now we've talked about cyber and about the need to find policy with regards to cyber attacks within the united states. we've put within the ndaa the '17 ndaa a directive that the administration deliver a policy or a proposed policy back to congress by december of this year and i believe that since this is coming through the ndaa
it's going to fall under your purview to see that is it gets done. this would not necessarily identify an act of war, but rather those acts of aggression which are of sufficient duration similar to what a kinetic attack would be, that it would impact our country. do you know if that study or that planning is ongoing at this time or if there is specific direction for individuals within the administration to comply with that ndaa directive? >> sir, i want to get back to you with the detailed answer on that one. i understand the question, i'm not prepared to answer it right now. i know that we've got an awful lot of work going on, we're engaged in the operations but the specific answer to your question i don't have right now. but i'll get back to you. >> thank you, sir. general dunford, the need for cyber superiority, i think sometimes when we talk about
air, land, and sea and space, sometimes we forget to add in the fact that cyber is connected in all sequences, they're all connected. could you just share a little bit with the committee about the need to upgrade the cyber capabilities in our ability not only for defense but to be able to attribute the attacks to be able -- not to defend against them but then to go back in and respond and one step farther in that is to be able to sur vieft attack in such a fashion that we actually can respond afterwards? >> senator, thanks. and first i would tell you that as we've analyzed today's conflicts and future conflicts, i would agree with you completely and we say really we used to talk about multidomain. we now talk about all domain and you referred to all of them, sea, land, air, space, and cyber space and so we do expect cyber space to be integral to any campaign that we could conduct
in the future. the requirements start with making sure that our own network is protected. we provide support to the rest of the government but our own network is defended to include our command and control systems and we talked earlier about nuclear. our nuclear command and control systems. but our mission of defense in the department also requires us to be able to take the fight to the enemy, which is an integral part of any campaign that we would wage, and that requires us, as you suggested, one, to be able to attribute it and provide the president with viable options in response. i would tell you the one thing that we emphasize is just because the enemy chooszs to fight in cyberspace doesn't mean our response has to be limited to cyber space. in other words, we may -- we may experience a cyberattack, but we'll take advantage of the full range and capabilities that we have in the department to respond. >> thank you are. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, mr. chairman and thank you to the witnesses for
your testimony and for your service. in march, you each testified before the defense subcommittee of senate appropriations on a topic that i care deeply about which is authorization for military force in the ongoing effort against isis and the record would reflect secretary mattis you stated, quote, i would take no issue with the congress stepping forward with an, umf i think it would be a statement of the american people's resolve if you did so. i thought the sachl thing for the last several years i might add, and have not understood why the congress hasn't come forward with this at least to debate because i believe isis a clear and present danger we face. testimony of general dunford same hearing quote i agree with the secretary i think not only would be a sign of the american people's resolve, but truly i think our men and women would benefit from an authorization of the use of military force that would let them know that the american people in the forth of their congress were fully supportive of what they're doing out there every day as they put their lives in harm's way.
is that still an accurate reflection of both your views sitting here today in june? >> yes, itting is senator, for me. >> absolutely, senator. >> senator flake and i are members of the senate foreign relations committee and have introduced an authorization trying to square some difficult circles dealing with these nonstate actors, isis, taliban, al qaeda, trying to appropriately have oversight without overstepping things that are appropriate for the commander and chief and his staff. >> i would appreciate you trying to work with us the head of senate foreign relations chairman corker has indicated a desire to move on this and we would very much like to work in tandem with you to hopefully get this to a place that will express the congressional resolve that you discussed in this testimony. >> happy to work in concert with you, sir. >> great. >> absolutely, senator. thank you. >> great.
thank you. >> i don't have any other questions. thank you, mr. chair. >> thank you, chair. i want to clear one thing up. first of all, i have the utmost respect four guys and god help us we got to have you be successful. but there is zero chance, zero i'm on the budget committee, there's zero chance that the budget process is going to work the best -- this year. the best we can hope for is that -- we're going to head -- there are 43 working days left before the end of this fiscal year. we're headed for another cr unless we have an omnibus. so the best thing we can hope for today is the omnibus. the budget process is broken it's why we're sitting here today and why we're at a historic low in terms of spending on military. we won't fix it lao long term. i'm going to tell you in a second i think the number's big. i need help on two things. one, help us with an audit the you have my full support we're going to try to get the money four but we need an audit.
second we need a bottom up analysis of mission-based need. we're going to hypothesize how much you need you've answered questions about it but i want a little thistry today. in my lifetime we disinvested in the military 3 times, this is significant, once in the '70s, once in the '90s and once just recently the last eight years such that today we're spending 3.1% of our gdp on our military. the low point was 2.6 in 2000. a lot of people refer back to 2000. that was prior too 9/11, prior to isis, tri-prior to you will at things that i have changed our world in the last 15 years. but we recapped only one time in my lifetime and that's in the '80s. we called ourselves rae capping in the 2000s but we chewed that up in 16 years of war. we haven't built new aircraft carriers or submarines or aircraft carriers and here we are where we're maturing at exactly the same time we have to rebuild and recap. it's estimated russia will have
70% of new technology. it's estimated it will take us 30 years to get to just 70% there. so we have an estimate here that says that based on the historical average the 4.1%, that's the red line there, the difference between where we were last year at 3.1% and 4.1%, that hundred basis point on our economy is $200 billion. the other way to triangulate about need is bob gates in 2011 put a five-year mission-based need requirement out and in 2016 estimated that his estimate for 2016 is $130 billion more than what we have. and then the last one i want to zbif is you this, and that is general, you said our mission is to make sure our sons an daughters never have to fight in a fair fight. >> i agree 100% with that. historically, the economy -- the country with the biggest economy is always the best. today china has reached us our economy is the same size as ours. there's every reason to believe that they're going to continue
ton outpace us with a population that's four times our size. there's no reason to believe that won't continue to happen. my problem is this, is that china this year will spend $826 billion on equivalent money compared to our 6set 7. that's if you get everything you want. they're spending more in equivalent terms, stigly more. so when i triangulate this we're somewhere tweer whun 30, this is this year, 130 tort 200 billion and that doesn't count the real full recap we're talking about. and by the way gits does that before isis, crimea, ukraine, about br a lot of things we know today. what we're really looking at here say situation where over the next 30 years just the navy alone, just to rebuild, this isn't operations, is 26 -- cbo estimates it's $26 billion. my question to you is i know you're a historian, how do we not just this year develop a long-term plan to make sure in an environment where every dime we're already spending on the military and va all domestic programs is borrowed, that's 25%
of what we spend, every dime of that is borrowed because in the last eight years we borrowed 35% of what we spent in the next ten years we'll borrow another 30% of what we're going to spend. in that environment, how did we develop a long-term strategic plan that helps us achieve what the general has said that our mission is? and i agree with that petition by the way? >> sir, we need to have a strategic dialogue with the congress and determine what you can do and at that point we'll have to adapt the strategy to whatever level of resources you can give us to avoid a strategic mismatch and protect the country. >> sir, with due respect, you mentioned one time before that you're work ieng miss-based estimate it's going to take some time for that to come together, is that correct? >> there's a strategy review under way, sir, yes. >> is that the gemna, senator dunford. >> there's two peetss to that we have been involved over the last 18 months in doing a
comprehensive analysis of what we're using at bench marks for the joint force. we've looked at china, russia, north korea, iran, and then violent extremism as not predictive as that being the only threats we'll face but with a key assumption being that 23 we bench mash our capabilities and capacities against one or combinations thereof of those challenges we'll have the right force. we've carefully gone through and done a functional analysis that we're going to share with the committee at the top secret level that takes a look at our relative competitive advantage or disadvantage bifunctional area against each one of those challenges and in the aggregate effect of those competitive areas in our ability to meet our objectives in a conflict. regardless of where the secretary goes with the defense strategy, what we intend to do is to provide the secretary with you asked for a bot to-up needs-based prioritization. >> i believe we're in a position right now to provide the
secretary recommendations for air bottom-up, needs-based requirements. and what we have done is taken all the analytic work that's been done against each one of those problem sets and dissect today so we can make clear recommendations so maintaining our competitive advantage. we've identify where we need to be, you know, five years from now and what specific programs will help us get there. that's obviously the latter part of that is a work in progress and we'll continue to review that constantly. but i feel like for the first time in many years as a rumt of an emphasis on that assessment over the last 18 months we're going to be in a position to have a very good constructive dialogue with the secretary and the secretary will be better empowered to have a good instruct u constructive dialogue with the congress. and be able to outline our requirements and more importantly the specific impact of either meeting or not meeting those requirements and our ability to achieve our objectives against those states that we're using as a benchmark. >> when can we expect that? >> it's available, you know,
right now. we've started to talk to the committee about that, senator, and we're informed now by some detail work that's already been done on a couple of those problem sets. and the work is actually reflected in this year's budget recommendations. >> thank you. >> senator allowed me to come forward with a degree of confidence i have about what it is we're asking for and to support the unfunded priorities list that were submitted. this is where i got the background, the rigor to understand the need for it, sir. >> thank you chair. >> let me point out again, mr. secretary, and i'm not without sympathy, but unless we have a strategy, it is hard for us to implement a policy. and it's now six months. and members of this committee particularly senator reed and i, but everybody, we want a strategy. and i don't think that's a hake of a lt -- lot to ask. i know there are problems within
the administration, but honestly what you just said is fine. but what is the strategy? and i don't think that the last eight years are exactly what we have in mind. so right now we have a don't lose strategy which is not winning. and general dunford, i appreciate very much what you're doing, i remember two years ago going over the pentagon and you telling me about all these studies that are going on. that's fine. where is it? and i understand that one of the problems is within the administration itself. but please don't tell us that we have a strategy when we don't. >> chairman, we have entered a strategy-free time and we're scrambling to put it together. but anyone who thinks a strategy and integrated interagency whole
of government strategy can be done rapidly is probably someone who hasn't dealt with it. it is according to dr. kiesling ger the most complex series of threats that he has ever seen in his lifetime and he's a master ever dealing with these kinds of issues. we're working it. as far as the strategy for afghanistan, it's coming very shortly. we have broader strategies that we're building on having to do with nato and allies in the pacific. you've seen us engaged with those people as we make certain that we're drawing strength from allies too, we're not putting this all on the backs of the american taxpayer, the american military. but it does take a lot of effort to walk in to the level of strategic thinking that we found and try to create something that's sustainable.
>> senator shaheen sfwln thank you, mr. chairman, undersecretary norquist for being here this morning. i would like to continue to pursue the question of strategy and my question is about strategy in syria. the map that everyone has at their place and that we just put up on the board is a map that was produced by the washington institute for nare rhee's policy. and this weekend the russian mince still have of defense announced that pro regime forces have reached the iraqi board offer. this comes as russia-backed forces encircle u.s. troops and their partners and seem to raise questions about our strategy to clear isis along the river valley. so my question is, were we expecting the russians to come down and make the move that they
did around altanuf and encircle our troops in and what is our next move because of that? >> senator, as you know, we are in syria in a defeat isis campaign. based on the president's decision of about a month ago now when he met with president erdogan, we have choes tone arm the syrian democratic forces. we had taken out already the manned by jury which is where the attacks on brussels and insuran istanbul and paris originated that was taken down. the next move is against raqqa. we have shifted the operational art to first invest or surround so that they're foirn fighters cannot get home to es squap and get home to europe and southeast
asia. that fight they crossed the line of departure a little less than a week ago going into raqqa and the fighting is now deep inside the city. as far as the the atrump of situation, that was another item we had. i did not anticipate the russians would move there, we knew it was a possibility i did not anticipate temperature at that time but it was not a surprise to our intelligence people who saw are the potential for them to move out in that direction. the middle ufreightdies river valley, clearly assad, thanks to the russians and the iranian support is flexing his muscle, he's starting to feel a little more optimistic about his -- his strategic situation. >> and -- >> and certainly they are moving to break through to their guerrason. >> and i appreciate that. the question, i guess the second
question i had was does that compromise our strategy for clearing isis in the river valley? >> it certainly has complicated it. let me have the chairman talk about the military situation on the ground there. >> and can i also ask you, general dunford, if you would talk about deconfliction aside, how we are or are not working with the russians in syria? >> senator, first without splitting hairs, the mete media reports of us enissue is will are not accurate and we still have freedom of movement outside of the area and we're not limited from moving up toward the river valley at this time. i talked to as the secretary does our commander of the united states central command if not daily multiple times each day. and so there's not large numbers of forces pro regimes out there. they have moved to the boarder,
but they haven't restricted our movement. to that point, our deconfliction mechanism with the regime via the russians is still effective in allowing us to prosecute the campaign. so -- >> i guess i was asking not about the deconfliction but about the other ways in which we are or aren't working with the russians. so i understand that deconfliction efforts are going on. >> sure. the only thing we're doing, senator, with the russians is communicating with them to deconflict to ensure the safety of our air crews and personnel on the ground at military to military level. meanwhile, tillerson is leading an effort to take a look at what might be done to address syria as a whole to include the political solution. but today on a day-to-day basis we have three mechanisms to communicate with the rugsz. we have a direct communication between our air base center and russians on the ground in syria. we have a three-star general on the staff it's my j-5 that
communicates with his kourt part in the russian staff and i i've spoken to the general in the past week 10 to sure that we address the safety of our personnel and our ability to continue to prosecute the campaign against isis. so to the extent that we're doing more than deconfliction, that's a political dialogue taken place led bisect tillerson, but right now we're completely informed by the nda language that restricts any kind of cooperation are the russians limits it to deconfliction and syria. so we're compliant with the law at this time and if there is a need to do something more than that, my understanding is that the secretary of defense for national security interests purposes can waive the requirement and allow us to do more with the russians if that -- if that meets our interests inside of syria. >> thank you. i can ask a follow-up question, mr. chairman? >> thank you.
there have been reports about the political efforts that secretary tillerson is undertaking through tom shannon to go to st. petersburg and the news reports have suggested that that could involve our exchanging sanctions, the removal of the russian docka, the facilities that we seized back in december and the u.s. have you and secretary mattis have you been consulted about what's being proposed there and are you troubled by the idea that we're going to do these exchanges without having any proof of that russia's changing their behavior? >> i've not talked to secretary tillerson about that. we have extensive talks every week, mostly every day that has not been one of the issues that i've brought up with him or he's brought up with me. i stay more on the military factors like what your map lays out here, that sort of thing. >> thank you.
thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. the -- i'm sure it didn't go unnoticed the people coming and leaving, we're having three hearings going on at the same time to i'll be very brief. i was hear for your opening statement, secretary mattis, and you said that you came back out of retirement and you are shocked at what you saw and you've been very up front. you've made the statement for decades america has been uncontested and that's no longer the case now. so times are different now. i do think it's great for very effective for the uniforms to be talking about this, you know. i can't do that, those of us up here don't have the credibility that you have when you're -- you're speaking from your vast experience. we are facing, in my opinion, the greatest threat this country has ever faced. and so when we talk about that and we look at the attention
that -- that our military has been getting, i go back to 1965 when 52% of the total federal spending was on defense and then that slowly degraded down to today when it's 15%. so when it gets right down to it, is a lot of this the fact that we have just not prioritized the military budget? i mean, we're faced with something that the threat is great and, you know, when you have people like general mill lay coming out and saying that he did the army posturing hearing last month he said we're outranged and outgunned, we're being very honest with the american people. but do you think we've gotten to the point over a period of time we're not given the proper priorities to defending america? >> senator, i know that there
were a lot of contributing factors but i don't know how we can restore the strength that we all know that we need if we don't start with repeal of the bca. and at least open the door to effective action by the congress oversight and funding. right now, it's like we've tied ourselves up in a knot. >> yeah. you i degree with that, general be? >> senator, i do. we have to benchmark our military capabilities against our national interests and the threats that we face. and i think what we've tried do is paint a picture where we have a disconnect. we have -- we're in a trend where the military capabilities and capacities we have are insufficient to meet our national interests in the context of the threat ha has grown. secretary kissinger, i've used this many times, describes this as the most volatile since world war ii and certainly sitting where i sit i couldn't agree more with that assessment. >> well, and, you know, if you
look at just sing the out end strength i was looking at a chart that you may have in front of you i don't know, but take out the reserve and the guard, just take the army active, the air force active, navy active, and marine active, you have made statements or the administration has made statements, for example, that the army active needs to be at about 540,000 and yet this budget is coming up with 476, steady figure from last -- from fiscal year '17. then the same thing is true of the air force, it's -- we had talked about the necessity for having 361 and it's at 325. and the same at navy and the same with the marines. so i would just ask if we talked about how adequate the budget is. do you think it is adequate in
terms of in strength we're not meeting the goals that apparently you are in on the decision, both of you were some ha in on the decision as to where we should be in the four services on just in strength alone. what am i overlooking here? >> senator, i believe what we've faced right now is the reality that we're already asking to you bust the bca cap by $52 billion. we're trying to be informed by the reality of what the law says, but at the same time we're not -- we're not being shy at telling you where we're really at in terms of what we need. but i think we need to work together and come up with a solution here because i don't know how i would bring something to you that laid out a budget for what you've pointed out here when the bca cap -- i mean, i would have to completely ignore this. and i'm ignoring it already the
252 billion -- well the president is with the budget he submitted and it just seems to me that we've got to have the kind of discussion that senator perdue, that chairman mccain, senator reed have brought up and get a grip on reality here because it's like we're all walking around as if we're victims. >> yeah. well you're right and i appreciate the answer and we have to do all we can. and we're -- i still think it's back to priorities and a lot of people out there in the real world agree with you. thank you, mr. chairman. >> let me just point out again, mr. secretary, 3% increase over the obama proposed budget is not enough. so whether we do away with bca or not and that's our problem, our problem with you is that it's a 3% increase over the obama administration. everybody agrees that that's not
enough. so if we're going to bust the bca, then why don't we bust it to what we really need rather than come forward here and complain all about the bca when what you're asking for is not sufficient? at least that's the view of the military commanders that i have talked to. senator donnelly. >> thank you, mr. chairman and i want to thank our witnesses for being here with us. as leaders, you both made a strong commitment to improve the mental health and resil yinssy of our service members and their families pirt appreciate your leadership on this issue. as we've discussed before in section 701 of the fy '15 ndaa congress passed an enactment which requires every service member, active guard or reserve receive a rowe robust mental health assessment every year. the department has said in the past that the sexton act requirement could be fully implemented across all services
by october, 2017. secretary mattis, will this be fully implemented by october of 2017? >> i don't know right now, senator. i will get back to you with the best estimate i can give you. as you are no doubt aware, that's a significant requirement. it's a very labor-intensive requirement for the number of health professionals that would be needed to do that but let me get back to you and tell you where we're at on meeting that deadline date. >> that would be great. it's critically regards to making sure that it is a smooth transition. v.a.he department and the
working closely on this? what happens sometimes, not to get to off script -- too off script -- a lot of active-duty vets, medicines they are dependent upon are not available when they are handed to the v.a., which causes significant problems. i want to make sure that the transition is being done to get this done properly. -- bothtis: don't v.a. v.a. and this one will be briefed very soon. we have made progress on electronic records. that is one of the computing factors on doing this right. -- contributing factors on getting this right. in one case over two decades we have never had a close relationship between dod and v.a.
sen. donnelly: i want to ask about afghanistan. you have booths on extraordinary work there over the years. i was out with marines in helmand province and tried to figure out their strategy. it almost seems like a place put down in the middle of taliban highway in every other direction. , what doesat this success -- i know we are waiting for the plan, but what does success look like one year from now in your view? what makes the situation better? i believe their, violence will be reduced significantly, including population centers, that the afghan government has a degree of integrity in what it is
contributing to its people, government services, that corruption has been driven down, but most of all that the taliban no longer has the freedom of movement we have seen now, not it is rolled back. -- that it is rolled back. gen. dunford: afghan casualties have been a concern. could assistys we is deliver operations and combined arms, specifically aviation capabilities in providing them support. that will be a key piece of mitigating casualties. sen. donnelly: do you think we are in better shape now than we were last year at this time, or have we gone backwards? gen. dunford: i don't assess that we are in better shape than we were last year. sec. mattis: i think the television had a good year last year and are trying to have a
good one this year. a change able to, by in some of our concepts of operations, help them with hair and fire support. support.d fire right now i believe the enemy is surging. sen. donnelly: we look forward to the report. i would still love to talk to your team about raqqa and some of the situations there. >> gentlemen, thank you very much for being here today. we appreciate your advice and your service to the great united states. secretary mattis, open invitation with the team ernst anytime. the vice chief and i solved most of the roles problems this morning, we just need you to fill in the gaps. a counter isis strategy in
southeast asia is something i've continued to push for, which is why i was excited to hear this weekend u.s. special operations forces were assisting the government of the philippines in taking back the isis held town of law raleigh. we used to have a sizable counterterrorism mission in the philippines. we have known about this threat for a very long time. unfortunately we have not returned to that area to counter some of isis' bad deeds. as we target a terrorist enemy, how does our counterterrorism commitment in the region also help ward off other adversaries like china and russia? gen. dunford: you want me to hit those two separately? in addition to our presence in the philippines, the congress
funded the maritime awareness initiative, helping countries specifically in indonesia and the philippines to have a common understanding of maritime domain to foreign fighters and criminals. we have incorporated southeast asian nations into what we call operation galant phoenix. that is our information sharing architecture, which allows us to take a trans regional approach to violent extremism. our foreign presence in the pacific includes the fielding of ,ur most modern capabilities and our routine pacific presents options designed to deter conventional conflict, and specifically conflict with china and north korea. sen. ernst: do you see that as being effective in the areas of malaysia and indonesia? gen. dunford: in terms of deterring conventional conflict? i do. i vew the most dangerous threats
in malaysia and indonesia to be violent extremism. sec. mattis: we have talked about the lack of strategy 4, we canceled the named operation we had there, perhaps a premature view that we were gaining success. without that, we lost some of the funding lines we otherwise would have been able to offer. what the chairman has brought up is completely correct, but it again it shows the lack of strategy we inherited. we are working closely with the philippines with both manned and unmanned aircraft. this is an ongoing issue.
what you are burning up is going to larger -- what you are bringing up is going to loom larger. we need to take take steps to bring this under control. sen. ernst: thank you for bringing up the shangri-la dialogue. while you where they are, the other countries participating in that dialogue -- what type of support for the looking at from the united states? sec. mattis: much of it is along the lines of what the chairman just mentioned with operation gallant phoenix. guaranteeing information, everywhere from interpol to secret services of various nations working together, so that transnational threats are recognized. galant phoenix is critical. oft is where our strategy working with allies helps take
the load off of. for example, singapore has offered isr surveillance aircraft to the philippines. that is the way we need to get everybody working together against this threat, and not carrying the full load ourselves. sen. ernst: thank you. because i am nearly out of time, our special operators have a dw ell time of a one-to-one ratio. this was mentioned in a conversation recently. what can we do? i will tell you it is because they want that. they will not say no when they are given a mission. i think it's incredibly important that they stand up to their obligations, but what can we do to increase their dwell expanding forces? sec. mattis: some of these missions, due to our conventional forces capability
compared to 2001, we now have army infantry, brigades, marine battalions that can take the load off of the special operators. where you want relationships, we still want to use special operations forces. the secretary directed meet several weeks ago to do an analysis of our special operations requirements, and look for opportunities to substitute with conventional forces for exactly the reason you are talking about. we are concerned about the dwell to deployment ratio. not only does it affect families, it prevents them from training for the full range of missions we want them for. we don't want them focused on the singular fight, but to be prepared to support us across the spectrum. sen. ernst: thank you gentlemen. thank you mr. chair.
both for your extraordinary service to our nation and all the men and women under your command, and make you for being so forthright and helpful in your answers today to our questions. f-35, io ask about the believe there are 24 of them on funded. unfunded. sec. mattis: you mean the support that goes with the aircraft to make them fully capable? sen. blumenthal: correct. and the additional aircraft as well. sec. mattis: yes sir. sen. blumenthal: thank you. as to helicopters, i have written a bipartisan letter with my colleagues to the appropriators asking for an to fullyl $327 million
fund the 60 helicopters that are necessary to reach the state of readiness for our national guard . ,ould you support that as well assuming congress provides the funding? sec. mattis: i would have to look at the priorities we place more broadly. it sounds reasonable. i would have to look at it in particular. sen. blumenthal: thank you. a number of our military leaders past and present have characterized the greatest threat to this nation as being cyber warfare. there was a report in the washington post just yesterday allied with the russian government have devised a cyber weapon that has the
potential to disrupt our ,lectronic grid completely cause chaos in our electric .ystems an. alarming report have you seen it, and do you agree it is accurate? sec. mattis: i have seen it. i believe this threat is real, and none of us are ignoring this threat at all. there is a lot more going on in i canegard, sir, than discuss in a private setting. sen. blumenthal: i would appreciate the opportunity. cyber is agree that one of the greatest, perhaps the greatest threat in terms of warfare tonight? sec. mattis: it is certainly one of the top because it cuts across all of the domains -- air, surface, it impacts our
nuclear command and control, but certainly are very institutions, whether they be democratic or banking, are vulnerable to this sort of attack. sen. blumenthal: would you agree that the russian hacking and cyber attack on our systems during the last election was an act of war? sec. mattis: i know it was a hostile act. whether or not it crosses the threshold for war, i am not a lawyer, but there was no doubt it was a hostile act directed against our country. sen. blumenthal: do you agree that we need a better definition or policy -- i am not sure lawyers are the best to define it, but would you agree we need a better policy defining an act of war in the cyber domain? sec. mattis: i think clarity in this regard would help in terms of deterrence response, absolutely.
sen. blumenthal: i want to in my remaining time focused on an area that is extraordinarily important to our nation, even though it is not the kind of glamorous shiny area that attracts most attention. president trump's budget cuts the department of labor's worker training budget by 36%. time when we are working to modernize our military with particular emphasis on the nuclear triad, the department of defense will be relying on the industrial base to recruit and hire and train thousands of workers across the country. connecticut,ate of thousands of workers needed to build engines. thousands of workers needed to build submarines that are sold.
they are essential to our national security, and yet we are cutting the funding necessary for training those workers. the welders, pipefitters, engineers, designers, people with real skills that are essential to our national defense. would you agree that our national security requires that funding be restored? sec. mattis: sir, i believe there is a need for the kind of people you are referring to. there is an apprenticeship program that the department of labor is starting. i don't know the details of it. it is directed exactly at the skills you have been citing. that would be the best place to get information about what is in the president's budget to address this. sen. blumenthal: i know the labor department is out of your
jurisdiction but it affects our military capability. this subject is intensely important to the future of our nation, and i hope you will support efforts to increase the funding necessary for apprenticeship and other such skill enhancement programs. >> thank you mr. chairman. you can easilys, said that if you cut the state department budget, you need to buy me more ammo. do you still stand by that idea? sec. mattis: that was a rather simplistic way to point out that we have engaged in the whole of government. you say that soft power is an essential ingredient to winning the war on terror? sec. mattis: we have the power of inspiration and intimidation. you have to work together. the state department represents inspiration overseas.
sen. graham: do you agree? gen. dunford: i do sir. >> sen. perdue: a reference to the audit. i will give you a question, but you have to be quick. bet will try care costs within the next decade? >> i think the overall is $51 million for health costs. sen. graham: look at it, he goes i think you will find it in coaching on the defense budget. >> health care costs have gone up significantly here after year. sen. graham: thank you. gen. dunford: when we liberate mosul -- would you recommend a residual force to stay behind? i do believe the iraqis will need support at mosul. i would point out that the end of mosul is not the end of combat operations in iraq.
sen. graham: should we leave a residual force to prevent isis and others coming back? gen. dunford: that would be strategically important to the united states. sen. graham: do you agree mr. secretary? sec. mattis: i do. sen. graham: do you agree that the outcome in and in -- in afghanistan matters? do you believe that every as an insurance policy against another 9/11? coming from afghanistan? sec. mattis: absolutely. sen. graham: do you agree with that? gen. dunford: i do. sen. graham: if anyone falls in the service of their country in afghanistan, they died to protect the homeland.
believe strongly the pressure we have put on terrorist groups in the last 15 years is the reason we have not seen another 9/11. sen. graham: do you agree that it is a good place to be in terms of countering international terrorism? sec. mattis: it is the center of international terrorism. we have to confront them there. sen. graham: saudi arabia. to both of you support the arms deal negotiated by president trump? sec. mattis: i do sir. gen. dunford: that is really a policy decision. i will refer to the secretary. sen. graham: militarily -- do you think it would be wise for us to have saudi arabia? gen. dunford: the only consideration is how it fits into the qualitative military edge. that is not a challenge. sen. graham: if congress rejects
this arms deal, what message are you sending to iran? sec. mattis: i believe iran would be appreciative of us not selling those weapons to saudi arabia. sen. graham: and the type of weapons we are talking about selling would make saudi arabia more effective on the battlefield in places like ye men, not less, because of the precision of the weapons? sec. mattis: with proper training it can have that effect. -- israham: north korea it the policy of the trump administration to deny them the capability of building an icbm that can hit the country with a nuclear weapon on top? sec. mattis: that is the policy. sen. graham: and that policy has to have all options in the table to be meaningful, including the military option. a military option would be devastating for the world at large.
you would have to balance the interest of homeland security against regional stability. do you think china gets we are serious about stopping north korea? sec. mattis: i have no doubt china thinks we are serious about stopping north korea, sir. it is principally a diplomatic lead effort. sen. graham: last question -- what signal will you be sending to russia if congress fails to to failpunishing them, to push back for their interference in our election. we give russia a pass. left message with it send to vladimir putin, what message would send to our allies, and would you support more sanctions? sec. mattis: i believe we have to make clear what behavior we want to see in the international community and what behavior we will not stand for.
we need to make that clear in the congress and executive branch and in our alliances. sen. graham: do you agree general dunford? gen. dunford: i do. i hope anything we do with regard to russia would be done in conjunction with the state department. i assure you we are preparing for the military dimension of the problem. sen. graham: with a 3% increase over the obama administration's defense appropriations. you are going to take care of all of those things. is that right? gen. dunford: i was responding to the russia challenge. budget has fy 2018 given us significant resources to deal with the russia challenge. sen. mccain is 3% sufficient in your view? gen. dunford: the prioritization
we have been given is the right prioritization. i believe the requirements provided over the budget are legitimate requirements. sen. mccain: so 3% is enough, huh? gen. dunford: chairman, i also stipulated that i believe we need a minimum of 3% to maintain a competitive level now. the secretary and issa scribed -- and i subscribed we need five more years before we can be competitive. sen. mccain: senator nelson. nelson: senator king has to go to a funeral. he asked for a few minutes of my time. sen. king: just a couple points. i hate to be bringing more bad news. in thinking about the budget future, the looming threat that i see is interest rates. an easy way to think about this,
one point of increase on our national debt equals the air force, the entire air force budget encompassed in a 1% increase in interest rates. 3% would incumbents the entire defense budget. 5% would encompass the entire discretionary budget. there is no doubt that interest rates are headed up. not is an additional factor we have to think about in terms of development of the budget. suddenly there is what i call the modernization bulge, for the b21, the columbia submarine, and the ohio replacement. that is another problem we have to deal with, and still maintain current budget levels. i think the situation is even more grim than what we have talked about this morning because of those additional factors that aren't generally
discussed in terms of this. we have talked a lot about unconventional threats we are and the attack on our electoral system. we haven't talked about hybrid war. i worry that crimea is a precursor, for example, to attack the baltic states without tanks rumbling across the border. finally mr. norquist, i hope you will take seriously the defense for the audit. recall, 2017 was supposed to be the year that the department of defense was ready. say, how canaine they possibly do this without an audit? perhaps we can have a hearing just on that. those are the points i wanted to make. i want to thank you gentlemen for your testimony today.
thank you for your public service. i want to follow up on the quote that senator graham quoted you with regard to the state department. options that up were previously available to us to exercise before we reach an budget thatct by a theubstantially cutting state department and other agencies of power, such as usaid ? i have not looked in detail at the state department. i can tell you what is being cut and what is being retained. you would have to direct that to secretary tillerson. i am not confident to answer it. sen. nelson: i would suggest
that you look at it, because if you are supporting a budget that whacks the state department and know you are not only a warrior, you are a diplomat. as a commander that utilizes all of those agencies of government in projecting your soft power. this is a budget that substantially decreases the state department and usaid. i understand the sensitivity. you don't want to answer that, but that is going to be something you will have to face. satisfied in your statements with regard to the u.s. support of article five in the nato treaty? are you satisfied that you
are you satisfied that you assured our allies that america supports article v? gen. dunford: i have and i believe the president has done so from the white house. sen. nelson: was it in his out whend he took it he was over there? sec. mattis: i think he believed by being there, those actions spoke louder than any words, but he has put it in his speech since then, as you know out when he was over there? , in the last couple of days. sen. nelson: do you think that the existingthe existing sanctie enough to deter further russian aggression in ukraine and syria? the sanctions against russia. sec. mattis: it is hard to tell
what influences putin. i think he is not acting in the best interest of the russian people, and as such, whatever the congress does will give negotiate as we try to get out of this spiral that is going downhill. make the point about where you stand, but leave some flexibility in execution so those who have to diplomatically engage and try to reverse this. would additional economic sanctions against russia help in your opinion? sec. mattis: if they were conditioned on failure of the diplomats to gain some kind of common approach to get out of a jam that russia is putting everyone in. sen. nelson: thank you. >> thank you, mr. chairman.
thank you for your service. there has been a lot of discussion today about the budget and the continuing resolution. one of the issues that seems to be forgotten -- last year, the appropriations committee voted almost unanimously on a defense budget. fortunately, it came to the last summer around this filibustered.s if we do that again, secretary, would that be helpful to have a defense budget that we voted on and then be filibustered? does that help with your troops? i hope it doesn't happen again. sec. mattis: i think it would be horrible for our country as well as our troops, sir. >> i really appreciate your focus on the asia-pacific. i know that was your first fili. if we do that again, trip as secretary. to singapore,sit
i also think was important for a whole host of reasons. i'm sorry i cannot have joined you. i had an event that was even more important than the dialogue which was a high school graduation of one of my daughters, otherwise i would have been with you. i read your speech and the q&a afterwards. i thought it was excellent. could you state policy as it south china sea and other areas so our allies and adversaries are aware of it? sec. mattis: we operate freely in international waters. we don't accept unilateral innovations on the international waterways or airways. an: will we continue to do that on a regular basis with our allies? sec. mattis: we will with our allies, yes.
uss deweyvan: the conducted an operation within 12 not a couple miles and military type -- not autical miles and a military type operation. the press and chinese protested. what was our response in response to their protest? reiterates: to that we operate in national waters. van: i appreciate your focus on the importance of our allies. you have highlighted that quite speech.your dialogue can you touch on that again for the committee's benefit and the benefit of the american people how important our allies are not only in the asia-pacific but globally in terms of us securing our national security objectives? sec. mattis: there is an awful lot of talk about asymmetric advantages and competitive
advantages, disadvantages. our allies and alliances as our asymmetric advantage, especially if you put a list of our allies alongside a list of china's allies or russia's alliances, you can see the proof coming through from history that nations with allies thrive and those without them do not. sen. sullivan: we are an ally ?ich nation sec. mattis: that is a good way to look at it. sen. sullivan: we should be working to deepen those alliances, correct? sec. mattis: absolutely. sen. sullivan: do you think everyone and the administration gets that and is doing that? sec. mattis: secretary tillerson and i worked together exactly on these lines. i provide military factors.
i also know in terms of homeland security, secretary of homeland security kelly is working with our closer allies around the hemisphere, but also further out to try to protect the country. i see it being a theme that is being carried forward. sen. sullivan: maybe a follow up on a couple of questions senator graham asked about north korea. appreciatedery much that the president and vice president invited 100 u.s. senators to the white house to get a briefing with the president, vice president and all of you. i thought that was very useful, very important. one element i thought was very important is you were
trying to get the trying to get the congress to be supportive of this new strategy. as you know, our country is at its most powerful trying to get the congress to be supportive of this new strategy. as you know, our country is at its most powerful when the executive branch, legislative branch working together on difficult issues when democrats and republicans are working closely together on difficult issues. what the president did that day, hearing the strategy firsthand from you and others was so important. icbm armed north korea the most important threat to the nation? sec. mattis: it is in the hands of potential rogue state that we have to consider and it is increasing. sen. sullivan: the threat is increasing? sec. mattis: they are learning from it. sen. sullivan: we need more missile-defense capabilities? sec. mattis: we can protect the nation but as we look to the future, absolutely. sen. sullivan: thank you, mr. chairman. >> sen. peters: please.
, please. sen. peters: i appreciate this informative testimony. describedmattis, you rapid technological change as an important force acting on the department. you highlighted as one of the four major forces that we have to confront. you and i have had the opportunity in my office to talk about how robotics and a taunus systems -- autonomous systems will fundamentally change warfare in the next 10 years, perhaps much sooner than that. the private sector is leading in many of these developments. ford motor company, general motors will likely have a production of self driving automobiles in the next four to five years in the marketplace which is sooner than most people realized. secretary mattis, you stated that the fact that most of this
technological change will come from the commercial sector may expose it to state competitors and nonstate actors. i'mtechnological change will coe concerned in recent years, china has strategically improving its capabilities and obtaining advanced u.s. technology. the committee on foreign investment in the u.s. is the u.s. government entity responsible for vetting for an in the u.s. for national security risks. i'm concerned it is both overburdened and may not be really up to the challenges we are facing today. animal rogers testified last month -- admiral rogers testified last month and understands the limitations and some nationstates have actually changed their investment methodology to get around the process we have. is to both of you,
is there a national security benefit to taking a tougher line against certain types of investment from nations that pose a clear threat to our national security, like china? sec. mattis: absolutely, there is. i completely agree with your view that it is updated and needs to be updated to deal with today's situations. gen. dunford: i could not agree more. i think the many challenges we look at very carefully, assessing intellectual property is of great concern. >> if we go through some reforms which i'm in the process of working to do that, are there youspecific recommendations have for us in changing the process? sec. mattis: let me send you a note that outlines. i will tell you upfront there is a lack of restrictions on
investment in certain types of technologies that we must have put in place. i can give you a more inclusive list of where our thinking is that on this, if you give me a couple of days. sen. peters: thank you so much. that would be helpful. in closing, given the fact this is one of our major threats we have to face, which is rapid technological change, and the list you put in your opening testimony, are there any particular technologies you are most concerned about and ones we need to be investing more in our own capabilities? this is to both secretary mattis and general dunford. sec. mattis: let me come back to you again in private. these are areas that are very sensitive. i don't want to let our adversaries know which ones we are looking at. sen. peters: i understand. general, same position?
absolutely.: sen. peters: i look forward to working with all of you. thank you. i know theill: chairman has mentioned this several times but i think repetition matters in terms of getting this message out to the american people. the president said he was going to have his increases in defense spending. at one point, the president said he was going to expand the army from 480,000 to 540,000. it is my understanding as the chairman mentioned that the president request in military was exactly 3% higher than president obama's. furthermore, i assume you agree that it calls for zero additional soldiers, correct? sec. mattis: that is correct right now. sen. mccaskill: does he not know this is not a request?
what i worrynow -- about is the american people are being told over and over again we are going to have a really our military. our military has a huge increase. the reality is so different than the rhetoric coming out of the white house, mr. secretary, and i worry the american people will not understand that we have not even begun to do what we need to do in terms of bringing our combat brigades to where they need to the. , tooe to sound like a me worriedi-me -- i'm that there is worried that there is misrepresentation going on. sec. mattis: senator, if you look at the $30 billion we asked for to address immediate i woulds problems, and
call it the situation we have weerited that demands more, are trying to put together a coherent program on the run while we are engaged overseas, while we have numerous crises unfolding, while we are still getting people through to the senate, nominated to the senate, and get the consent of the senate -- there are a fair number of things going on at one time. that is not to say we should not continue to work along the lines as we are together, but i have to come to you with a coherent plan where i can confidently say the money you throw into this is going to be spent wisely. i did not say we are asking for enough money in this budget. it is a five year program. sen. mccaskill: i know you are in a difficult position. it does not help our cause in terms of adequately funding our military if the president is giving the country the impression it is.
that was the point. in addition to the strategy for afghanistan, i'm awaiting the isis which was supposed to be ready 30 days after the president took office. i want to turn to the strategy on isis cyber. we spent a lot of time worrying about the russian hacking. i'm worried about the russians hacking our military and doing the things they are doing in terms of planting stories and gathering information. intelligence experts have identified one of the premier agents of russia in terms of cyber warfare. the people that fancy bear has targeted, 41% of them are either current or former members of the military. analysis.to a recent russia hacked the twitter account of central command. hasnow that russia
co-authored a very known site. it originally began in america. i don't want people to go to it. it is a russian proxy. the americans were seen in video at a meeting of the folks they are working with in damascus and the big giant pictures of them were of assad and putin. site asking veterans -- helping them to find jobs, helping them for cancer treatment. veterans are getting personal information to this site. we know attractive women are going on facebook. in the old days, you would send a spy into a bar that the military frequented to gain relationships. this recent article pointed out, but now, they can do it to a facebook page. are you all hands on deck as it
relates to the way military personnel and veterans -- i know they went after a general. are you all really paying attention to the corrosive ability of russia to influence our military with direct contact group social media with our veterans through these proxy sites? sec. mattis: i know training is probably the number one way to armour our people against this sort of thing. training has to be ongoing. i have no complacency about this. i will see if the chairman has anything to offer, but i just point out that we have funded cyber command. we have all sorts of things going on with nsa. they keep us posted with firewalls in place. malwareed malicious being used where we were not affected.
that was because we were throwing obstacles in the path and building firewalls as fast as we could. all you can do is stay ahead of these. you cannot do want and say i can go home now. training and constant attention to the protective measures, i can giving to you is ongoing. longrief itself is pages as i look at the various blocks and countermeasures we are putting in place and what we are finding about what various actors are up to. >> i have seen the service chiefs in particular have changed the command climate in cyberspace. gen. dunford: in violations of the protocols associated with information technology, holding people accountable.
as the secretary said, it is about training and accountability. our culture of accountability has changed a great deal. i also think with the support of congress, our separate capabilities, while continue to grow them, have grown a bit. 133 cyber mission teams you all approved. 70% are fully capable. i think if we had this conversation 36 months ago, we would be talking about getting out of the gate. operational. we will have 33 of those teams and continue to identify requirements to make sure we can stay out in front of the threat. the secretary used the word complacency. do we get it and our changing the culture and taking effective action? i think we have significantly changed the culture and none of us believe we are where we need to be. sen. mccaskill: one of the things that worry me the most in
this article was there was a purported story of a russian source in syria and the way he had died which was aerobic and it spread like wildfire to troops in various places. we have seen an uptick in the popularity of putin in russia. i worry they are really insertously trying to combat related storiesinsert combat related stories that reflect favorably on russian soldiers when they may not even be true. it is infecting our troops with maybe less than a clear eye than what russia is and what they are trying to do. sec. mattis: this is understood throughout nato. the german minister of defense was explaining to me how one of their soldiers deployed to lithuania and was alleged to have raped a lithuanian girl. story.ely made up
trying to undercut the cohesion of story. trying to undercut the cohesion of nato. i'm pointing out this is a military problem. it is accepted as a military problem and we are working it. i think we have a long ways to go up against this rather imaginative enemy we have. sen. mccain: i have some additional questions. >> i wanted to follow-up on the north korea discussion briefly. mr. secretary, general dunford, i know your korean war history buffs. i heard you talk about the korean war. yesterday in your testimony, general dunford you talked about potential conflict on the korean peninsula. seoul residents would face casualties. in a testimony a couple of weeks ago about the conflict on the korean peninsula would be like. mr. secretary, you mentioned the
threat thatloping the north koreans present in terms of an intercontinental ballistic missile. you stated it was the policy of the trump administration to prevent them from getting that capability. i think you have strong support from most members of the committee on that. twoertainly seems those issues are going to start colliding relatively soon. and, i know there is a lot of ways to prevent them from getting that kind of capability. left of launch activities, but was a of those ways decision to take some preemptive military action, i believe that would clearly trigger congress's article i of authority with regard to declaring war and you would need this body's authority to take such action.
do you agree with that or has that been a discussion in the trump administration? it is a very big issue that i amateur has gotten enough attention. sec. mattis: i have not brought that issue to the president attention. from mar-a-lago where the president met with his secretaryt, to tillerson and i will be following up with our counterparts in two weeks in washington as we have strategic security dialogs. we are doing everything we can to avoid resorting to war in terms of protecting ourselves and our allies. sen. sullivan: i think is an issue of that should be on somebody's radar screen. not that we want that, but part of what the president has been trying to do is get the congress to be supportive of his policy, like i mentioned. that is why i brought the briefing of the white house a few months ago which was useful.
house a few months ago which was useful. to continue to have that support, we need to be involved. i think that is something this committee needs to be caucus in of, but also the white house as well. let me ask one final question. in the past six weeks, the russians have sent bomber missions off the coast of alaska that has been intercepted by our f-22's five times in the last six weeks. what do you think the russians are up to with this kind of very persistent checking of our norad systems -- it is a pretty active engagement. last time it was with fighter escorts. what do you think they are trying to do and what are they trying to achieve and why they so active? i'm not suresir, what they are trying to achieve there. when you look at the combination
of their cyber threats to i'm not sure what they are trying to achieve there. democracy's, when you look at what they are doing in syria, , as you putbers these activities together, it is very concerning. we are going to have to turn this around. this cycle has to be turned around. i think it is going in the wrong direction in terms of stability and peace. this is where miscalculations can occur. thank you. sen. mccain: i think the witnesses for their patience and responses. i want to emphasize again, mr. secretary, it is not your fault. it is not yours, general dunford, but we are not going to theseill while you settle strife that is going on that is preventing the strategy from coming forward. we are moving forward with the authorization, with appropriation, and without strategy, it makes our job 10 times harder.
i think we have been pretty patient with you. we're going to start putting pressure on because we need a strategy. 13, 2017 andn june say, don't worry, we will be coming forward with a strategy -- things are happening to rapidly in the world. you have my greatest respect and admiration, but we are not doing the job for the american people that they expect us to do. so, it is what it is. the witnesses and i thank you for being here. adjourned. is the