Skip to main content

tv   Hearing Focuses on Violent Extremism  CSPAN  June 15, 2017 8:56am-11:01am EDT

8:56 am
c good morning. this hearing is called to order. i want to thank the witnesses for your testimony and for taking the time, for your courage. the mission of this committee is pretty straightforward. to enhance the economic and national security of america and to promote more efficient effective and accountable government. the committee really is in many respects to committees and one. we have homeland security and we have governmental affairs. this hearing is really focusing on the homeland security side of the committee structure and within that structure we have four priorities. border security, cyber security infrastructure and countering extremism and violence in any
8:57 am
form including islamist terrorism. what we try tried to do in this committee is through this hearing process layout a reality. i come from a manufacturing background. salt a lot of problems. the only way to solve a problem is first admit you have one properly define it, properly describe it, gather the information and admit to the reality. there is no way anybody can deny we have a problem worldwide in terms of extremism and violence. we witness it just a few hours ago on a practice field for a charity baseball event. let me acknowledge first of all our prayers are with those victims, congressman scalise, the staff member and the two
8:58 am
members of the capitol hill security team that were worded and even having been wounded they continue to to return fire and prevented a far greater tragedy. the appreciation we owe to the men and women in public safety that every day they step out of the threshold of their door they literally put their lives on the line. they demonstrated it again this morning so i appreciate anybody who is willing to step up to the plate to defend our freedom, protect public safety but also stand up and tell the truth and describe reality in a world that is very dangerous in the world in a world that is very very dangerous, in a world that doesn't want to hear the truth and reality. now, previous hearings on this
8:59 am
subject has talked about the way radical islamist terrorists have become incredibly effective in posing the minds of young people around the world to engage in these acts of terror and depravity. we have held hearings of what motivates this, what are they trying to accomplish? we learned what has been incredibly important we are a nation of immigrants. we welcomed them. they have made this nation great. people that is come have become america and not rejecting their past culture. we never ask that. we do ask them to accept
9:00 am
constitutional law to be able to take advantage of this marvel in the american economy. we learned how important it is for us in government to possibly engage in communities to make sure people are welcomed. it's not perfect. it hasn't completely worked. it's far from perfect here in america. we'll be talking about that. i want to say that i appreciate the courage of our witnesses who are willing to step up to the plate and just everybody to have an open mind. we need to understand the truth. we need to understand the reality if we have any hope of
9:01 am
solving this problem. we are got to get to the point where people will feel free and safe. or walk the street or raise their family. it's not going to be easy. the only way to do is th is if we have the counselrage to actu tell them. i'll turn it over at after we ask consent to enter my written statement in the record. i think all of us are waiting to exhale of we learn more about our staff members and colleagues
9:02 am
but make no mistake about it, what we saw this morning was evil, and i hope that this hearing doesn't stray from the fact that we should be focusing on the evil. we should be focusing on violen violence. we should be focusing on enforcing our criminal laws against evil and violence. we should be focusing on any of those who twist any religion, anyone bo two twists and distorts religion to a police station -- place of evil is an
9:03 am
exception to the rule. it is not the rule. we should not focus on religion and the freedoms our country embraces. our country was founded on many important premises but perhaps paramount was the freedom of religion. the earliest americans aside from our native americans came here because they were fleeing from persecution based on their religi religion. our freedoms like free dm of speech, freedom of religion define us as a nation. no evil should ever be allowed
9:04 am
to distort those premises. ever. i'm hoping although i'm worried honestly that this hearing will underline that. i'm concerned the president's budget proposal has taken its eye off the ball in terms of our fight of this evil extremism and the violence. i'm worried it has slashed homeland counter terrorism measures like the viper team that is provided an extra layer of security at our airports. it also calls for complete elimination which provides financial assistance to local law enforcement agencies that help secure our airports. it would reduce the grant program, transit security grant
9:05 am
program by more than 50%, all soft targets for these evil criminals. the urban area curt grant initiative which helps prepare high density urban areas on how to respond would be cut by $150 million. the president's proposal would zero out which are so essential as we face violent, evil criminals. we have to improve efforts to stop americans from being radicalized. i'm danger at least to date has not been from those who try to slip into this country unnoticed or who try to illegally cross our borders or who are seeking
9:06 am
refug er refuge. it comes from people who have been radicalized. in the context of extremism it appears to be focused on the witnesses. it's vital that any effort is done in partnership in order to combat isis we must have healthy dialogue to ensure resources are available and have concerns about loved ones who have become attracted to extreme rhetoric.
9:07 am
unfortunately some of the rhetoric is at odds with this approa approach. most importantly it would make the united states of america less safe. we need to spend less time stirring up rhetoric and more tyke working with the majority of muslims in this country and around the world who are peaceful and law-abiding. we are buck ki lucky to have mi testifying with us today. a crafting strategies to go after the people trying to do us harm. i'm eeg ef to hear mr. liter's analysis without compromising
9:08 am
our constitutional principals. we can do better to combat and prevent radicalism as long as we work together under the umbrella of those important protections. thank you. >> it is the tradition of this committee to swear in witnesses. so if you'll all stand and raise your right hand. do you swear the testimony will be the truth, whole truth and nothing but the truth so help you god? >> i do. >> please be seated. . she served on the dutch parliment and wrote the script of the short film submission. after the film was released the
9:09 am
was assassinated. she currently is research and founder of the foundation. ms.ali. >> chairman johnson, ranking member -- i wish the congressman a swift recovery. thank you for this opportunity to talk to you about the threat that's endangering our constitution, our freedoms and our way of life. yearly not all muslims pose a threat but some do. how can we tell the difference? we can by understanding the nature of islam. islam is part religion and part
9:10 am
political military doctrine. the part that is a political doctrine consists of a world view, a system of laws and world code that is incompatible with our way of life. in 2017 there are two major governments that apply islamic law. isis in the most pure form. islamic law as practiced in these places negates secular law and -- women are su board nant to men.
9:11 am
they face discrimination in marriage, inheritance and custody. victims of rape must produce four witnesses and if they don't many are stoned to death. religious minorities are subject to second class citizen kpes s existence. there are no checks and balances and no free and impartial cause. there's no ruler flaw. decent is brutally suppressed. not all muslims, not even those that live support they invoke muhammad. i call and his legacy from
9:12 am
mecca. there are muslims who reject military. i call them the reformers. they are different because they stand up to the medina muslims but openly rejecting sherrea. there are also millions of muslims who live as considerable minorities. the medina muslims are not satisfied with this status quo. their goal is to transform all muslim countries and to use muslim immigrant minorities as a beach head to transform nonmuslim societies, even free ones such as the u.s. they already have a foothold.
9:13 am
me dean no use a force along with desimilar nation through a mechanism. in theory it is the call to islam. in practice it's a process of radical indoctrine nation. they use the education and cultural activities. they target the individual, education system, workplace, broader economic society as a whole. it's totalitarian but different. this quest by the medina muslims by all means has lead to repression and in few societies to deviciveness and break down
9:14 am
of social cohesion. we must stop not only the violent entities like isis, al qaeda and others but also dismantle the networks. above all we need to chal ledge the principals of sherrea law. our next witness is ms.namoni. she lead the project, a stude student -- >> thank you so much. thank you chairman johnson and senators for this invitation to be here today. our hearts are indeed gripped
9:15 am
with the horror of this morning's shooting. i feel empathy and compassion to you. this day takes me back when i felt the same gripping of my heart. i learned that day that my colleague and friend, danny pearl from the wall street journal had been kidnapped. we learned in the weeks that followed that he had been kidnapped by militants. it was 15 years ago almost to this day that we learned that he was buried in a plot, his body cut into pieces by the men who believed that their interpretation of my faith justified this brutal murder. i sit before you because on that day i developed a passion that i
9:16 am
would expect you all will also feel committed to after you learn the intentions, motivations of the shooter this morning. i lost a friend. on that day i made it my duty as a muslim to stand up against idealology of extremist islam that motivated the men that took my friend from this earth. there was one value that connected the 27 men that were involved in danny's kidnapping and murder. they had interpreted that is of the nature i want us to be really clear. this is not the islam my parents
9:17 am
taught me. the islam my parents taught me lead me to stand shoulder to shoulder with my father and open my hands and pray for peace of mind for everyone in this world. what nart talks about is really important. we must make this distinction. it means we are clear as senator johnson is talking about, related to the enemy we face. it contradicts the constitutional values of of this country. the standards are in complete
9:18 am
contradiction with the laws of our country. i want to tell you from the trenches that is a reality that we face in our country. in northern california facebook promotes the page of an organization whose meeting i attended last summer. behind the speakers was a flag for the islamic state. in michigan a man preaching to advocate for child marriages in the name of islam. in northern virginia they just preached it is okay to cut the clitoris of girls because it leads for them to keep hyper sexuality from expressing itself in the world. we must be clear.
9:19 am
we must have intellectual courage. we must separate the from those who do. in that way to be able to differentiate from the swath that my faith will be realized. we will protect muslims if we take this strategy of marginalizing the extremists. we must be economied committed defeated fascism and communism. the idealology denies us the right as men and women to sit in a room together as we are sitting today. it denies young girls and calls them doing rous women. it denies a woman like myself to
9:20 am
sit in a bakery without being separated and then killed. between us i don't know how many death threats we have faced. we sit before you with our backs to our friends and our enemies because it is our duty. it is our duty to stand up for the humanity in which we believe. when i had fear last night she took my hand and she said do this for humanity. i urge all of you to remain
9:21 am
committed to all of the values in which we believe and the freedom and beauty of this world that we want to see the next generation enhe generation inherit. >> thank you. >> he is the founder and president of institute of world politics on national security and international affairs. he served at the state department until 1983 then with national security council until 1987 where he was director of soviet affairs. >> good morning. i am honored on how to protect
9:22 am
ourselves against radical jihadism. this is like trying to we rat kate mosquitos, arming them with shotguns and shooting mosquitos owl afternoon. you'll get a few, if problem is the garden has a puddle which is spawning new mosquitos, not just terrorists but so solve it and if problem is we have virtually no ideal logical war jors in this war. eliminating cold war tension required changing the marks of
9:23 am
the soviet system. this consisted of the use of the truth to counter soviet propaganda as the basis and the inhumanity of communist rule offering the people freedom, democracy and hope for a better life a key indicator of that victory was the concession that the idealology and system it produced were evil. we must also face it by targeting the ideal -- it seeks
9:24 am
to expedite ordinary mission activity by conducting jihad of the sword and resettlement jihad. migration to nonmuslim lands and cull minute nating conquests defeating this idealology requires a counter attack based on superior moral precepts. it requires telling the truth
9:25 am
and ending self-censorship about radical islamism it exposes the crimes of radical islamist regimes. it requires an attack on manipulation by jihadists. i can discuss a number of different elements. finally it requires offering a positive alternative including the promotion of human rights. regrettably our government is organizationally unprepared to do all of this. it has ideal lodge y'all warf-- resurrect information agency. i would call it u.s. public di
9:26 am
ploemt si agency. they would include human rights bureau a strengthened version to counter jihadist propaganda. a bureau of education culture and ideas with a special office of religious affairs. the voice of america which should be transferred to this agency. the cia must rest recollect influence capabilities including the funding of all -- and renting of all forums of media in their efforts the department
9:27 am
of homeland security the state department, fbi and local law enforcement needs significantly improved capabilities to distinguish between ordinary muslims and not a radical secular program to distinguish those people from jihadists and when it come to whom to admit or with whom to cooperate. thank you our final witness is michael liter. he served as director of nagtsal terrorism center for president george w. bush and president obama, mr. liter. >> thanks very much for having
9:28 am
me. i would add my thoughts and prayers to those who were injured and families that are effected this morning. before directly addressing today's topic i want to offer two critical opening points. frs it's that i'm not going to address all forms of terrorism today. the second is we are focusing on this struggle i am extremely supportive. from my perspective it includes actions to take people off of the battlefield with our close allies and ideal logical
9:29 am
component. these are inherently broad activities. in my view in of these must be based on a very rigorous and as you said a fact chul and truthful analysis and unlike in 2001 this is something which is widely available there is no doubt in my mind it reduces violence.
9:30 am
we shouldn't be surprised by that. it works in anti gang activity and it can work in this context as well. studies from duke university of massachusetts, kenya all back this up. in my view -- and i take significant blame for this i agree with much of what he said about the poor resourcing and lack of focus on many of these programs 1.5 was for prevention
9:31 am
activities. the almosts of dhs's office of community partnerships has grant funding. if we think it is a serious problem we need a serious solution. right now we do not have that. we must not con flat idealology
9:32 am
with mainstream muslim briefs. to do so is not only factually wrong but it will feed directly into extremist narrative of us versus them. it directly undercuts the message we have. in this regard i think it is deeply mistaken and harmful to equate concepts that are not inherently violent with these principals. for example the muslim tradition which is not dissimilar is not equivalent with islamic of this
9:33 am
term. what would it look like? act aggressively overseas disrupting the physical and cyber safe havens. second, federal law enforcement must work with local officials to share the heavy burden of investigation. in doing so those officials must understand islam and all of its diversity so they may distinguish. defensive measures must be in place and we must have a robust strategy for a country of almost 300 million. that would include education programs for state and local officials on islam done in
9:34 am
conjunction. die version programs modelled on anti-gang programs leveraging all elements of u.s. and local governments is far beyond law enforcement officials. just like in manufacturing they are dollars well spent. there are a number of programs as the ranking member said i think are at risk i look forward to answering questions and working on this and other issues which face us of violent extremism of all stripes.
9:35 am
>> thank you. i did want to have a piece of paper with me. i wanted to quote carl popper from 1945. let me read the full quote into the record. again, this is written in 1945, unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearanceover tolerance. if we extend unlimited tolerance even those who are tolerant against the onslaught of the tolerant. mr. liter, you said if we think this is a serious problem we need a serious solution. that's the point of this haerg. do you think this is a serious problem? the reason i called this hearing is a hadn't heard of that quite honestly. you described it adds pretty devine. i think it could be.
9:36 am
do you deny the reality there are elements, that there are potentially charitable. >> i spent four and a half years of my life working for a democratic and republican president try to go keep the american people safe from violent islamic extremism. so any suggestion that i some how deny that i think is -- >> okay. great. >> i wasn't trying to challenge you. >> mr. chairman, there are undoubtedly organizations who clothes themselves and wrap themselves in the cloth of religion who are pursuing
9:37 am
violent means. we have to see through that. i think one of the greatest challenges is to make that distinction, to draw that distinction between those organizations which are pursuing legitimate means versus those that are pursuing illegal and dangerous violence or funding of other organizations. >> i was not trying to challenge you in any way shape or form. i respect the testimony you provided this committee in the past. is there anything you heard what
9:38 am
i have heard i would largely agree with. i don't agree with few small things. contrary to the good doctor i don't think there has been significant self-censorship within the u.s. government talking about this. i tripled the resources at the national counter terrorism center to so there was no issue saying this isn't islamic. we knew and people had to understand that. we started a program so go out and train community groups on understanding islam. we started a program that helped train muslim kplcommunities on understanding what was available to their sons and daughters. so we did not at all ignore it. i do agree that u.s.
9:39 am
government's policy and budgetary priorities have not always aligned with that. i don't think it was political censorship in trying to bury our head in the sand with what some of the problems were. >> can you kind of respond? >> yeah. i have been waiting for this hearing for 15 years. i remember a moment when i went to the state department several years ago and there was a meeting of public di home si and it was that talk about what strategies we could put into place and i said to her very simply it's about the idealology. it's about the idealology that you know very well is put out into the world by governments like ie ron, cutter and saudi
9:40 am
arabia and their proxies. i was told we can't have this conversation about idealology. it wants to see us put in with rights that are not equal to men. so this is a reality. it is in herndon. it is a road because of off of
9:41 am
route 7 are the mosques, think tangs, bookstores that put this out to our community. in this book of law here on the anniversary it tells us that homo sexuals should be killed. this is not the islam my parents taught me but this is a reality. i'm so happy we are finally confronting the ideal logical problem. >> would you like to respond? >> yes. i think it's not so much a question of disagreement but maybe a question of perspective. i would like to start where we
9:42 am
agree on all of us here on the panel and i hope all of you so i would like to start as a set of believes, as a doctrine, civilization on the one hand and human beings as muslims. it is spiritual but it also has a military political component. there are some muslims, the
9:43 am
spiritual religious like your mother holding your hand and the way your parents raised you who tells you that the way they see the spiritual component of their religion is peaceful and they wish no one else any harm. if they engage that is only about spreading that peace and goodness and wellness. we are dealing with this other group that are exsenuating the military. both groups invoke the profit muhammad. they invoke scripture. does it support those who exten
9:44 am
shoe wait or those who spir spirituality. later on it is all about politic, military. he has malitias. he wages wars and these men in the 21st century were organizing themselves as organizations like the white and muslim brotherhood. it is just one entity. so that is why it is extremely
9:45 am
important. we have been focusing on those who use violence. we haven't paid as much attention to what you call the puddles, the breeding places, those people who get into the hearts and minds of vulnerable people and turn 24e78 towatowara that it's okay to kill homo sexuals, that it's okay to pursue a world view of a society that's based on a 7th century law. that is, i think to begin we should have that clarification. i want to say i came and accepted your invitation to talk about only that group, not to
9:46 am
stigmatize those -- >> and i appreciate that. what do we agree on. i was not challenging. i'm trying to find out where are the areas of disagreement. >> much appreciated and completely understand. >> i think we all agree that extreme idealology is important and we must focus on it and we must fight it. but we have to do it within our constitutional per constitutional per ram ters. we can't ban that book. we can't ban it in the united states of america.
9:47 am
that's not how we role. we have to fight it with the appropriate tools of our government and civil laws. as we fight it i think the facts really matter. i think it's important it remain fact chul. you discussed european no go zones. you brought experience working . you worked arm in arm with your counter parts in these year pea yan countries. is that fact chul? are there no go zones in europe? >> >> in my experience in denmark, germany, france having worked with law enforcement officials i
9:48 am
never saw anything resembling no go zone. >> and in the written testimony -- and by the way, i would love to see the citations of the 140 cases because the one you site specifically it is therefore subject to sherrea law. are you familiar with that case? >> i am. the case arose an individual was seeking or wife was seeking restraining order against a husband for sexual abuse and the new jersey state trial court refused to find criminal intent based on the husband's belief that the sherrea marriage
9:49 am
contract could not have allowed him to do what he did. the first round of appeals in the new jersey next level of court, i was also a clerk at the supreme court for justice and i believe it would be called a smackdown saying that the trial court deeply misunderstood u.s. constitutional law and new jersey law and there was no way in which this husband would be permitted under any interpretation of u.s. law to go forward. >> and the case you site until missouri, i know to prosecutor in that case. this was the case where a family member abused a child over what they were wearing. in this instance it was a head covering. it could have been a short skirt. it could have been a bare
9:50 am
midriff. this family member pulled the child out of the school and physical physically assaulted the child. still pending, by the way -- >> i'm not completely familiar with that case. i read something, but i didn't write about it. i acknowledge, by the way, senator, that the -- that particular case in new jersey was reversed on appeal. but the fact that it got -- >> he was never even charged. facts matter, sir, he wasn't acquitted of anything. >> then, perhaps, i used the wrong language there. >> language matters. >> i understand. but the judge made a judgment based on sharia that it should have never gotten as far as it did. >> i can tell you that having done on domestic violence cases
9:51 am
for many years and having fought in the missouri legislature, believe it or not, in this country. me as a state legislature, i fought to make sure that men could not rape their wives in missouri. that law was just overturned in 1995. up until 1995 men could rape their wives in the state where i live. so i mean, i think that this notion -- do you believe that sharia law is slowly becoming the law of the land in this country? >> i think it is deeply mistaken factual belief that sharia is making any inroads. religious laws can be the basis for contracts between people if they choose to. ultimately, the u.s. court system has a very, very well-developed theories, judicial theories of when those religious agreements, those
9:52 am
religious contracts between two individuals can or cannot be honored in federal courts. that's well established. and i see no signs, no credible signs that sharia law poses even the most minute risk to u.s. constitutional principles and u.s. law. >> and could you briefly address the resource issue as it relates to the president's budget and what that will do to our cve efforts in this country as we try to do what these witnesses want us to do, that is combat the ideology that is recruiting people to violence. talk about what we can actually do to counter this important problem. >> senator, let me start by making this as bipartisan in my criticism as i can. both democrats and republicans before this president have failed to adequately resource these issues. it's not just the president's budget on this front. i do believe that in terms of what the main threats are we're facing today, largely low
9:53 am
technology attacks in scattered locations, paris, london and the like, i believe the president's budget does violence to some of those pieces, especially for this committee. potential cuts in funding to the viper teams, to the coast guard for port security, for rail transit. these are real issues. these are places that need to be defended. they're not been adequately defended and they should be. to the president's benefit, some of the funding for the fbi budget is good. commissioner neil in new york has been vocal, as is las vegas. there is real cuts in uac funding and other programs that have been critical in situations like orlando and boston for preparing people to respond when the tragedy occurs. that can't be cut. last but not least, i know this is not directly in this committee's purview, but it is
9:54 am
interconnected. which is the international aspect of this. and i'm deeply, deeply troubled by the proposed cuts to the state department and usaid which are critical to the international programs we have that the doctor noted. i think we have to seriously regard those as secretary mattis has so eloquently said, it just means he has to buy more bullets. and you can't buy enough bullets. so in those regards, i think the president's budget is deeply problematic. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> senator? >> thank you, mr. chairman. and ranking member mccaskill. i want to start this morning, too, by adding my thoughts and prayers with those who were injured following this morning's horrific shooting. and i want to thank the men and women of the capitol police for the service they provide. they keep us safe every day and all the time. and as we saw today, are willing to risk their lives for the mission of keeping us all safe.
9:55 am
so i am very grateful to them as i am to all law enforcement and first responders today. and with that said, i want to turn to broaden the discussion a little bit. mr. leiter with you, about the issue of home-grown extremist and terrorism. in your view how can the department of homeland security work to prevent americans from being radicalized, whatever their idealogy -- or whatever the idealogy is that inspires them to be radicalized to the point where they're willing to carry out violence? are we going to be able to arrest our way out of the threat of home grown terrorism or are we going to have to build partnerships? and, again, you've addressed some of the issues about resources, what kind of resources do we need to be able to do that? >> there's no doubt that we can't arrest our way out of it. no bigger a softy than donald rumsfeld noted that where he
9:56 am
said the question is not how many are we killing, are we producing more than we're killing. it's a slightly different situation with arresting, but it's the same challenge. arresting those who have already gone beyond a certain level of extremism towards violence is a critical part of that. the best way that a, we're going to be able to find the people that need to be arrested, and b, reduce the number who are arrested is those deep partnerships. are those deep partnerships with communities. now the fbi is good at that and has a global and national presence, which is probably unmatched. but the department of homeland security plays a key, key role because they're not all in law enforcement. and partnerships cannot just come from people with badges and guns. so from my perspective, the department of homeland security can play several roles. you have the protective element. they're most responsible for our critical infrastructure, whether it's oil and gas, pipelines, ports, borders, they have to do that and they have to be funded to do that.
9:57 am
programs like vibper do that. they have to be on the front lines of that engagement. it's not just dhs people walking around the country. it's engaging with communities so communities understand how they are under threat and what sort of partnerships they have to engage with. it is helping them understand what ideologue radicalization is occurring online and also building those relationships -- i'm looking over at senator harris, because so many of these companies are in the valley. building those relationships between government and ngo's and technology communities because there are things that the u.s. government cannot say as matter of constitutional law and doesn't have any credibility anyway. the dhs can play a key role in building those partnerships. last but not least, dhs along with the fbi have to be -- remain at the center of the sharing of information and not just sharing information, but sharing investigative leads with state and local law enforcement. so we never have a situation
9:58 am
where boston where something falls below the threshold for the fbi but the boston or cambridge police department might decide to pursue it. the police have to understand constitutional limitations and understand the ideological distinctions between this. >> thank you very much. i yield the remainder of my time. >> senator harris. >> thank you. i join with senator hassen, expressing my prayers and best wishes for our colleagues and the folks that were attacked this morning and also thanks to the first responders in the capitol police who are so incredibly courageous and are
9:59 am
sacrificing so much to protect other people. so my prayers go to their families as well. you know, this morning actually senator hassen and i were both at a prayer breakfast at the senate prayer breakfast. and it's a wonderful time when we get together in a bipartisan way. only senators in the room to share our faith. and our faith not only in the gods we worship, but in each other. and it was poignant this morning and there was actually a presentation by senator cassidy, our colleague from across the aisle from me, but from louisiana. and what i took away from what he shared this morning, was something i think we all agree on, which is there are certain universal truths. there are certain things that in spite of what might appear to be differences among men and women, certain things -- and most of
10:00 am
the things that we share that bind us, that we have in common. we have so much more in common than what separates us. and i think that when we are facing challenges, it is important for leaders to emphasize those things we share in common. and unify us, understanding that they are just universal truths. so with that spirit, i have several questions, but i'd like to talk with you, mr. leiter, in particular about your thoughts which you have touched on this morning about what can be done to improve the situation where work needs to be done. and if we can talk about it in the context of the dhs budget, and we are, obviously, a committee that has oversight on that issue. so you mentioned the george salim program has being a good one at dhs. can you tell us what makes it
10:01 am
good? >> i think what makes it good are probably three things. one, you have someone who in running it is deeply experienced in the u.s. government and understands islam. i'm sure there are many people who understand islam more. he happens to be muslim and he's thoughtful about that. that's very hard to find in the u.s. government. the number of senior officials who understand islam is painfully low. so that's the first thing. the second thing, i think he understands there is only so much the government can do and the u.s. government tends to lack credibility in speaking about any sort of religion, but especially in islam. going back to my first point that there simply a lack of understanding. in doing that the office has sought not to make official dhs
10:02 am
pronouncements, but instead use funding in grant money to enable those people who are doing good work away from washington, d.c. i think those are probably -- the third piece i would say is they are innovative in focusing on areas which are non-traditional counterterrorism drivers. who normally does counterterrorism, intelligence, law enforcement, border people. they have focused more education institutions, they've worked on something called the peer to peer program, which partners with educational institutions. they have worked closely with a variety of organizations, immigrants' rights organizations. again, who don't show up with a badge and gun as investigators. i think what we've generally seen overseas in places like the united kingdom and netherlands, their counterradicalization programs have tended to work best when they have a little bit of arm's length. not working independently, but a bit of arm's length from the
10:03 am
attorney generals of the world. they will become an adversarial relationship. >> is viper the same as that? >> no, senator. viper is a rapid response team which shows up for transit when there's a threat. i believe previously there have been roughly 31 viper teams around the country. the president's budget cuts it to eight. when we saw threats in the united states, if we had something like the attack in london, we would immediately activate those viper teams, because then they would show up around the b.a.r.t. stations with long guns -- >> or like san bernardino. >> absolutely. these are critical response teams. another element which is separate from viper but i think equally important. many interagency programs for training for an attack, i would love to stop every attack. we're not going to stop every
10:04 am
attack. the question is how do we optimize the response? we have done that generally in joint programs between fema, the nofb and the terrorism center. they have included. muslim organizations, you respond, save the people that are injured. that was effective in orlando, boston. and cutting those funds would be tragic. >> as an expert in this area, i take it you're recommending to our committee that we fully fund those programs in the effort to combat terrorism in our country? >> i think those programs in light of the threat we face from isis are only more important than they have been. >> can you unpack a little bit for me the possibility for collaboration with silicon valley and the technology industry? >> i can. >> i'll carry that back to california with me. >> in full disclosure i spent three years working in silicon valley as well.
10:05 am
i now have no economic interest in this. but what we started doing in 2009, 2010, 2011, was this idea of the government can't speak atho athoreitatively on this. but there were muslim ngo's who wanted to know how to stop radicalization and they didn't know how to get the message out. anwar al-awlaki was better at doing that. it was bringing together companies like google to sit down. how do you optimize search where you don't get an al-awlaki video. i think technology companies, obviously, between 2009, 2011 when i left and today, we are in a even more problematic posture. i say that for at least two reasons. one, the threat because
10:06 am
terrorists' use of the internet has become vastly more effective as the chairman said. isis knows how to get the message out using music and communications in a way that al qaeda never did. so the threat is greater. second, the tension between the u.s. government and the valley, technology companies, are broad is higher than it was in ten, 2011. it's a variety of issues beginning ing with edward snowden. finding that partnership will be more difficult, but it's critical. i think prime minister may at the g-7 raised the issues. it's the issue of reporting terrorist content and taking it down and even a harder nut to crack is the issue of end to end encryption. which has not always arisen but will increasingly prohibit or keep u.s. law enforcement officials not just working on
10:07 am
terrorism from access and communications in a way they have become accustomed over the past six decades. >> thank you. >> at the moment just a quick interject. mr. mccaskill was talking about the first amendment rights, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, which we all value. but we do within those rights. we ban things like child pornography. where is that line? but with that, senator hidecamp. >> thank you, mr. chairman. again, we are so grateful. we have two capitol policemen right near us today and we're so grateful for everything that you do. not only defending us personally, but the institution of this government. and after an attack like today, we understand and brings into sharp focus our gratitude. i want to thank the two who are present today, but i also want
10:08 am
to say my hearts and prayers go out to all of those who are wounded and injured. an attack against them is an attack against our own country. i don't think there's any doubt about it. i've spent a lot of time with the counterterrorism folks because i think this is one of the toughest nuts to crack. which is, how do we participate in communities in ways that build community, build relationships, and prevent radicalization? i don't think anyone here would disagree that we kind of know the formula. but we need resources to do it and we need education and training to do it. you already -- for senator harris, i think drew on some of your experiences on how things have changed. i need to understand your experiences between 2007 and then coming out of it in '11 but even going forward. how do you see the threat is
10:09 am
changing, and where have we seen best practices in attacking that threat? >> the threat has changed and i'm on the advisory about for nctc and i'm happy that at the end of my briefings i can go home and not stick around and address them all. the threat is more challenging than what i saw with possibly one exception. we were worried about large scale attacks in a way that we don't face in the same manner today. we were worried about ten planes blowing up over the atlantic and really big attacks. that's the good news. the bad news is, the scale of the radicalization that's occurring, the pace at which it's occurring, the independence with which it's occurring so you don't necessarily see the same communications between domestic elements and international elements, which were so important for us detecting them.
10:10 am
in all those ways, the threat is sfw significantly worse, even if the likelihood of a large scale attack was lower than it was in 2011. now, where have i seen success in combatting this? i've seen a lot of success in the united states combatting this. let's pat ourselves on the back just a little bit. we have done remarkably well. now, any moment you say that, you have to in the same breath recognize the tragedies we've experienced in the united states, whether it's orlando or san bernardino, and i never mean to make light of that. but we had generally been pretty effective at disrupting attacks before they occur, and compared to most of our western allies, we've been very successful at reducing radicalization rates in the united states. if you look at radicalization in the united kingdom they have a significantly larger problem than we do. same in belgium, the netherlands, same in france. we've done that for four
10:11 am
reasons. our muslim community is more integrated than their communities are. our muslim communities are better off economically than those are. our muslim traditions tend to come from more moderate strains than some of the more extreme strains that are more central. and our muslims, when they come to america -- this is obviously, a gross generalization -- but they have tended to be focused on being americans, not overseas fights as opposed to many in the south asian community and the uk and the like who have stayed focused on the issues. we've had exceptions on that. but overall we've done a pretty good job because we're americans. not because we had great programs to stop it at reducing it. where have i seen good programs? we have a lot to learn from the uk program. some of the engagement with communities and much more aggressive ways was very important. i think the dutch as well have thought about this deeply and have a number of social
10:12 am
programs. i'm hesitant to look very far at deradicalization programs because those have generally been in states which have a set of tools and a lack of constitutional protections we do not have. it's not to say that some of the saudi problems on deradicalization haven't been good, but we cannot implement programs the way they do. >> where in the united states? what communities, what cities? >> i think the example of minneapolis, st. paul and the somali community. that community faced a crisis with second generation somali americans going to fight in a nationalistic war under the banner of al shabaab. the federal, state and local community and partly led by the u.s. attorney and the mayor in minneapolis did an outstanding job. i think some of the counter gang work, which has been implemented and pulled into the counterradicalization work in los angeles by the lapd has been
10:13 am
quite good. one example, after 9/11, the police athletic league in new york added cricket to its list of sports. it's way of making sure that communities that come from different traditions are not separated from their governments and feel like they're partners and not adversaries. >> i don't think there's any doubt one of the first steps in radicalization is isolation and the need to better understand. we've done a lot of work over the last, you know, really since the 90s on concepts called community policing. this is just -- community policing became the model of surge mentality in the military as we're looking at not fighting nation states as much as fighting rogue groups. i think it's really interesting to think about community policing in those dynamics. i'm very concerned about the reduction in resources to local law enforcement where this has to happen on the ground with real resources and real
10:14 am
commitment and real training. to address not only that -- the concerns that you would have keeping a community safe, but then the critical important role that local law enforcement plays in counterterrorism. and so i am deeply concerned about the cuts to community policing and the cuts to the anti-terrorism program at dhs. >> senator, i could not agree with you more. state and local and police and medical and fire, all these people on the front lines, they have to understand it. if they're not funded to learn it, they won't recognize it and we will end up with violence after the fact. so much of this is now occurring on the internet. it is not as a general matter, it is not occurring in mosques. it is not occurring in public spaces. it is occurring on the internet for individuals. and helping local officials also understand that piece, and then address that piece, is something
10:15 am
that they are not accustomed to. it's not regular community policing and it's critically important. >> those are the kinds of things we've seen just for a second, when you look at what we've been able to do in child pornography, which has been an incredible model we could adopt in this fight. you know, the child pornography work that's being done by the department of justice is, i think, a great model for the work that can be done here in terms of images and messages that could be shared broadly with all of law enforcement. >> absolutely. i think nick mick is hailed as a success story. i have note there have been bipartisan bills in the past, as recently as 2015 coming out of the senate select committee on intelligence by chairman burr and vice chairman feinstein requiring a similar approach and those have been strongly resisted. it's complex issue but i think it's one with which the senate
10:16 am
will have to tackle. >> senator peters. >> thank you, mr. chairman. first i'd like to send my thoughts and prayers as well to all the victims in this morning's shooting in alexandria and thank the capitol police for what you do each and every day. thank you so much. today's topic is certainly a very important one. i appreciated the testimony of all the witnesses today. and recent tragedies certainly underscore the threat posed by violent extremism. reading through some of the written testimonies, i became concerned about a recurrent theme of anti-islamic sentiment. muslim and arab americans serve honorably in our military and our law enforcement agencies. in the intelligence community. and i will say they're an incredibly important part of the social fabric in my state of michigan. and they contribute a valuable and necessary perspective to that that is critical for keeping all americans safe. and perpetuation of anti-islamic
10:17 am
attitudes i believe undermines our collective values and it contributes to the undercurrent of xenophobia, that's being levied at some of america's ethnic and religious minorities. this erodes positive community relations and feeds into the larger extremist narrative that the west is at war with islam, which we are not. rather than lending legitimacy to a distorted and prejudiced view of islam we should endeavor to counter all types of extremism, regardless of who may inspire it. as a nation we should seek fact based solutions that enable us to address all extremist threats in an adaptive and integrated matter. my question relates to online radicalization and over the last several years we have seen improved efforts, as you mentioned by the u.s. technology companies, to identify and shut down user accounts that espouses
10:18 am
bfr benefits. there is challenges in identifying content. these realities and the ubiquity of the internet and our robust protections says we don't need sweeping legislative chases. you witnessed first-hand these groups such as isis are able to leverage the internet to disseminate content. in other words, contact that is really unmistakably designed to support the objectives of a foreign terrorist organization. if you could make only one recommendation to the committee, what would that be in terms of your approach to confront the issue of isis propaganda on our popular social networking sites?
10:19 am
>> rebuild trust between the u.s. government and those technology communities. because we're talking about trust a lot here. we're talking about trust between the u.s. government and muslim communities. that's critical. there is a lack of trust and cooperation between many technology communities and the u.s. government. that's very problematic. i very much understand, companies are doing what they're doi designed to do. but we're in a place -- and companies have done a lot. google, facebook, twitter in particular have done a lot over the past two years to increase cooperation. but it was starting at a pretty low point. because of the leaks of edward snowden and that alienation. we have to get back to a point where there is a cooperative relationship where easily identifiable features which are rather indisputably associated
10:20 am
with political violence of any sort are rapidly reported to the u.s. government. that is not what happens today. it is often removed, it is rarely reported. and the u.s. government simply doesn't have the means to monitor the internet. it's impossible. so building that trust, rebuilding that trust with people who are really good, smart wonderful americans in the valley like the general counsel at facebook. i mean, these are thoughtful people who want to be of assistance and we have to figure out a way that their interest as companies can be protected. the privacy and civil liberties of people using the tools are protected but you have a rapid methodology for reporting instances like you suggest to law enforcement officials so they can start to find some of those needles in what is a massive hay stack. >> in your recent piece, you mentioned the g-7 is a potential
10:21 am
vehicle to influence technology companies. to what degree is the threat of online radicalization going to require an international approach to what you've just mentioned? >> i think the reason that prime minister may brought this up was because the uk itself probably didn't have the market power to drive technology companies' behavior. so in my view, the first thing we should do even before we get to the g 7 is to try to drive this between the u.s. and our companies. otherwise we'll end up with international pressure on our companies, which will not be in the same vein as our normal constitutional protection and they may find even more comfortable. i do think that it is inevitable they will begin to see increased pressure from the uk, germany, france, and the belgians at least on some of these issues. i don't think that they can withstand that pressure over time. >> as we're working with our
10:22 am
companies here in this country, do you think there's a need for the u.s. to play a leading role in terms of defining what actually constitutes extremist content so private companies are able to develop new terms of service and identify problems? >> only when you have that clear definition -- it's probably a little bit easier in child pornography than in this context. only once you have that can you have that reporting mechanism that protects civil lirtberties. we have to give them some rough boundaries, even if it's not capturing 100% of the material we want to get down, if it captures a big enough percentage, it will still be of meaningful assistance in terms of internet radicalization. >> appreciate it, thank you for your comments. >> thank you, senator peters. i want to comment that i also fully read the testimony.
10:23 am
certainly i saw anti-islamic terror comments. i didn't see anti-islamic. the witnesses were careful to distinguish that. they've been careful in their verbal testimony to distinguish between muslim whose are practicing their faith, you know, peacefully and spiritually as opposed to little islam. they're bending over backwards trying to make that distinction, and hopefully we can agree that we are against islamic terrorism that incites and kills. this has been an unusual committee. i appreciate your -- >> i'm happy to step out. >> no. i want you there. but as i've been watching this, i've seen other witnesses jotting down notes. before i start a second round i'd like to offer those witnesses an opportunity to
10:24 am
respond based on your notes. basically the questions and answers. i'll start with the doctor. >> thank you, senator. in all of this discussion, we haven't talked about the war of ideas. we haven't talked about the fact that the emanating force between radical jihadism is a moral attack on the united states and the west. and our culture. and there are things that we can say in response to this. this isn't something that has -- that can be developed particularly at the local law enforcement level. this has to be done by national leaders who are the representatives of the american people at the highest levels where such things as a human rights campaign can be launched.
10:25 am
one of the most effective things that is being done right now in the online war is done by very small organization called good of all. it's dedicated to fighting against radical jihadism in a radicalization prevention operation by standing for the -- and promoting the universal declaration of human rights as an alternative set of ideals. as an idea virus that can capture the imagination of the new generation of so-called digital natives, the younger generation who are fluent with computers and cell phones and social media and the like. and this has taken some of this effort, which is barely funded at all. it's privately funded. has managed to catch fire on
10:26 am
different parts of the world. millions of hits in egypt, for example, on the work of this organization that -- where egypt wasn't particularly targeted. but this was the natural course. senator peters mentioned earlier that we are not at war with islam. well, you know, one of the biggest arguments of the jihadists is in fact the west is at war with islam. and sound arguments have to be made that this is not the case and that we are opposing a certain kind of a radical political idealogy. i'm also concerned here that too much of the conversation is focused on the question of terrorism and not on the question of trying to establish a basically totalitarian
10:27 am
theocrattic form of government. sharia law may not have made the kind of inroads in american society that it has in other parts of the world, but if you look in europe -- european countries have plenty of enclaves that have established a parallel structures, parallel track for sharia law. and there are cases in u.s. courts when it comes to family law, where a muslim man may marry an american woman. they will have children, the man can then make his proper muslim declaration of divorce and then sharia family law has triumphed in cases like this where the
10:28 am
husband can take the children off to saudi arabia and the american mother will never see those children again. i'm not an expert on all of that particular stuff, but i've read enough about it to know that such things exist and that the parallel track for sharia law has established a very good foothold in a number of european countries. i think that there are -- i think that we have to be making it very clear that insofar as there are those who want to try to establish a political order in this country, that is at variance with our constitutional freedoms that this has to be opposed. and it is being done under the shroud of religion, under the protection of religious freedoms. but in fact, it is a political movement that is at variance
10:29 am
with the constitution of the united states. i think we have to be vigilant about this and i think we have to make the proper moral arguments at the highest levels of this government that can both inspire those who would be radicalized to take a different path. and to alert those -- alert so much of the country about what the intentions are of certain kinds of people, which is not just violence, but it is the establishment of an unconstitutional order in this country. >> thank you. >> senator, i have a 14-year-old son, so i watch a few science fiction movies once in a while. we oftentimes see the monster flailing. and we can take this approach that we try to address every place where that monster hits from san bernardino to orlando
10:30 am
to london to dhaka to kabul, or we can go to the heart of what is controlling that monster. and what that is, is an idealogy of extremism that everybody on this panel has acknowledged. i have lived on this earth and seen this idealogy take root in communities from my hometown of morgantown, west virginia, to northern virginia, to the rest of the world. the heart of this sits in propaganda machines that are churning out this dala of extremism. those propaganda machines are in quatar, iran, in saudi arabia and all of their proxies. senator mccaskill you said language matters. and as you said senator johnson,
10:31 am
we do have rules, contracts in this country when you insight violence. when you lead people to violate our u.s. laws. amazon sent me overnight this book, woman in the shade of islam that outlines how a man can beat his wife. it was first delivered to me at my mosque in morgantown, west virginia, by the muslim students' association. ideas matter. words matter. we have to get at the heart of the ideas that are then leading people to violence. we are on a conveyer belt. we should not just look at all of these incredible programs that are dealing with people once they become violent. we need to address the ideas that take them on that conveyer belt to that radicalization. and that is why i believe, also, that our internet companies are failing us, unfortunately.
10:32 am
amazon.com brought me this how to book on how to beat a wife. g go daddy hosts a website. i invite anyone to go there and use the search engine and look up the word jew and see how many ways they say that jewish people should be murdered. they host the website of the islamic organization based in northern virginia and chicago that wants an islamic state. we're not doing enough to police these bad ideas. these are ideas that are not protected simply by our free speech rights in america. they are ideas that incite violence. we stand together against white supremacists, we should stand
10:33 am
together against islam extremists. they exist. and unless we go to the heart of the problem, we will continue to be fighting terrorist acts for the generations to come. we have to dismantle the network of these bad ideas that are being put forward into the minds and hearts of young people. and we have to do it today. we have to investigate. we have to dismantle. and we have to put forward exactly the positive ideas. and the muslim reform movement, our ideas are for secular gr governance, women's right, we have to put forward the good ideas and shut down, eliminate, and take from this earth these bad ideas either through our relationships with these countries that are putting forward these ideas, or by any means that we are able to then
10:34 am
stop the promotion of those ideas into the minds of our young people. thank you. >> mr. chairman, i would like to go back to the big picture. and listening to mr. leiter, i think you in your capacity working in the government, you've worked very, very hard and i really appreciate that. but i want to evaluate, if we reflect on how this government has performed since 9/11/2001 have performed, my evaluation would be we have failed. we have these small programs that if you look at the big picture, look like small drops in the ocean. we have spent trillions of dollars. we have waged wars since 9/11.
10:35 am
islamists, the radicals, whatever name you choose to call them, they have grown exponentially. they are sympathizers. the agencies, the money, the funding that they get, all of that has grown exponentially since 9/11. if our posture on 9/11/2001, if it was, we are going to take the war to them and we're going to stop this evil, in 2017 we can barely say we have stopped that. it has doubled, tripled in some places quadrupled. we've failed to define the enemy. because we've failed to define the enemy we're flying bilind. our ambition cannot be we're going to develop these programs to stop or to limit the consequences of the next attack. in 2001, it was we're going to stand for no attack at all.
10:36 am
if you look at some of the other countries, i'm really, really worried. i think we don't have the sense of urgency here. worried about some of these european countries. do you realize that france is in a state of emergency since november 13, 2015? >> germany has closed some mosques. radical right wing groups in europe are on the rise as they have never been. i have lived in holland for 14 years. and when i came, there was a very small, small radical right wing group. and today, it's the second largest party. in britain, after this attack in london, the authorities said there were 3,000 people they were surveilling, but there are 20,000 people at large. it is completely true that when
10:37 am
it comes to mounting large scale attacks, we have made it very, very difficult for them to do that. and they may not succeed and i hope they don't succeed. but when it comes to entering the minds of human beings, and turning them into live missiles against us, because they promised them a hereafter that is fantastic. in that sense, we have failed. in that sense, because we don't get to the idealogy. we don't talk about this problem. we athey are prepared to use anything as a weapon. and it's very easy for them to say it's still happening in the mosques. in germany, in france, in
10:38 am
brussels. it's happening in school. it's carried out by muslims who accentuate the political military doctrine they're raised with and using that doctrine to turn people's heads and minds away from the principles. what we thought were universal decency. that's what their minds and hearts are being turned away from. and the minds and hearts are being turned away to the idea that you are doing god's work, allah's work to kill people, to maim, to repress and bring down societies. it hasn't happened in the united states. it hasn't yet happened in europe. but countries in africa have been brought down, countries in the middle east have been brought down.
10:39 am
i know we don't speak for the entire government, but i don't think we should walk away this afternoon when we're done with the idea that there is no sense of urgency. there's a great deal of a sense of urgency. and between 2001 and today, we have failed and we have failed miserably and it's time to correct our course. >> thank you. by the way, i completely agree that we shouldn't be pennywise and pound foolish. the purpose of this hearing is to define the problem so that the resources we do spend -- you don't start with resources you start with the definition of the program. what i'm hearing is a great deal of agreement in terms of what it is. senator danes. >> thank you, mr. chairman, ranking member mccaskill and thank you all for testifying. the idealogy of violence and radical islamic extremism is a challenging topic and it takes moral, political and at times
10:40 am
physical courage to speak up. as we reflect on the recent terror attacks, paris, istanbul, one year ago this week since the lone wolf attack in orlando. we can't allow fear to disrupt our daily lives or our liberty. we must remain vigilant about the growing threat of islamic extremism and work toesh ti exth threats. i want to direct questions regarding the freedom of religion. everyone made mention of it. that is we're not at a war with or opposing a certain religion. what we're at war with is an idealogy and violence that threatens our free society and the liberty of every individual.
10:41 am
as a muslim american, how do we reassure the freedom of religion, while pushing back on dawa and violence carried out in the name of religion? >> senator, thank you for the question. my family comes from india. in india, muslims are a minority population. the islam that i learned from my parents was one in which we accepted the values of the society and secular governance. that's what my parents taught me. the values of islamism is one where there's a sense of superiority to anyone else's world order. the history of how we got here is rooted in the last 100 years. the dismantling of the ottoman empire brought with it dreamers who wanted to create a new islamic state. and so some of those men were --
10:42 am
had names -- those men created movements like the islam brotherhood. they are the ones that they're talking about in terms of the dawa they have done. when my father came here in the 1960's to manhattan kansas, because he was given a ticket to the heartland of the america. he loved the country and the values. he loved the dignity of labor he saw by the professors. another man came here to this country and came to colorado. and he hated this country. he hated the freedoms that women get in this country. and so how do we protect muslims and how do we resist that islamic movement? it's, in my estimation, by differentiating that movement
10:43 am
from muslims. and isolating it. marginalizing it. black listing it. taking down their websites. this is how i think that we have to create an image and a vision of islam that is compatible for the 21est century, with the west and with the united states. you come from a state that is the heartland of america. you believe in the same type of values my parents taught me to believe. and it is that kind of universality that has to drive us and we have to recognize that there are people in all communities, including in our muslim community who do not share our universal values. >> thank you. in your testimony, you mentioned the role that social media companies are playing in blocking terrorist material. as a society here in the united states, we encourage the free
10:44 am
flow of information and ideas. but there are limits. this platform has enabled reward for illegal and oftentimes gruesome actions and it must stop. now, i spent 12 years in the cloud computing business and software business. and i fully appreciate the challenge and commitment to maintain reputable platforms. twitter announced they suspended over 635,000 accounts for promoting extremism since 2015. how can governments and western society augment the tech companies' efforts? >> so to me, we have to make moral decisions that we have a right to speak up and against any form of extremism. even when it comes in the name of religion.
10:45 am
we should not give muslim extremists a pass because they are expressing religion. we should not give them a pass because we're afraid of offending muslims. we have to use the same standards that we apply to all of society against the muslim supremacists that want to control our country. when i was doing research for this testimony, i looked up the terms of service that go daddy has, that facebook has, that youtube has. there are so many operators, as you know, who are violating those terms of service by preaching hate against jews, against gays, from within my muslim community. and so i feel it's my obligation as a muslim to say we cannot allow that to exist. we have a see something, say something verse in the koran. it says bear witness to
10:46 am
injustice, even if it's by your own kin. and so in that way, i believe that the social media companies actually have to have the moral courage to police these muslims who are also practicing hate. >> thank you. i want to turn to the doctor, based on your expertise, how do we get platforms outside the u.s. to get serious like twitter and facebook have about removing inappropriate content? >> during the cold war, we had the u.s. information agency that got information out about the united states in the face -- to counter the falsehoods about anti-american, you know, of anti-american propaganda. we had information policies, we had america houses, for example,
10:47 am
in germany where there could be good public policy debate about these issues. we had the -- all sorts of educational cultural and other kinds of exchanges, visitors' programs. so many people abroad have a caricature view of the united states as fast cars, skyscrapers, dishonest businessmen, all surrounded by pornography. and people don't see, you know, the work of small town america, of church going america, of, you know, of the charitable work and volunteer work that's done in this country. the kind of things that can melt people's hearts rather than incite hatred. we need to be portraying our country much more accurately to the world. the last couple of administrations have been
10:48 am
gradually shutting down the voice of america. it's a crime. the voice of america during the cold war, along with radio free europe and radio liberty were described by the great russian author as the most powerful weapons we possessed in the cold war. because we broadcast information, we broadcast the truth, we broadcast ideas, we gave people accurate history when their history was being erased by totalitarian regimes. radical islamist regimes do that, too. complete mischaracterization of sto historical facts. that's some of the open public diplomacy that can be done. public diplomacy has been completely neglected by our government. it is, i believe, the most cost effective instrument of american power in the world. i will even argue that public diplomacy was the decisive
10:49 am
element to have brought down the soviet empire. but i don't think most people in the foreign policy community understand that. but then there's the covert side of it, which i think is equally important. as mr. leiter said, we -- the u.s. government doesn't have much credibility in talking about religious theological matters. i think that, however, there are things, there are people who do have credibility talking about these things, and the u.s. government can magnify their messages. for example, there are doctrines within radical islamism that say that allah wills everything and that means he wills the rape of the 12-year-old girl and he wills the cholera epidemic in pakistan.
10:50 am
does allah really will evil? is that really so? is it allah's will that somebody should go out and kill innocents? are you going to go to heaven for killing so? is it allah's will to go out and kill innocents? are you going to go to heaven for killing innocents? or are you going to hell? this is language u.s. government representatives cannot use. but it is language that can be put on programming, for example, on, say, the voice of america and whether it's radio or television or whatever where there are discussions about these things. and then there's the covert side of things. during the cold war, we had frank wizner's news letters, newspapers, journals of opinion, broadcast stations, organizations, the congress for cultural freedom. all sorts of things like this
10:51 am
that were designed to fight the war of ideas against communism. and were remarkably effective at doing this. and people wrote for those journals without even knowing where the money came from. the money came from some foundation somewhere. but it was u.s. government money. and after a few cutouts. so there are many such things. >> thank you. >> i just have one further question here. i think part of the reason i called this hear, again, explore this concept of something other than just jihad and the use of potential lly and what looks li in cases may be benign organizations but maybe not. i want to ask mr. leiter to what extent have we followed the money trail in terms of being diverted from charitable works to not charitable works. let's put it that way. and how much more work do we
10:52 am
have to do on that? >> senator, a foundational point. i think following the money is very important. i think in terms of the overall counterterrorist effort, important but pretty small. and what we're seeing in many of the attacks at least domestically, funding is about the least important thing there. now, certainly when we talk about larger organizations overseas whether it's hamas or al shabab or others, but in the u.s. the funding piece i think is less important. second, i do think that the fbi, department of treasury, intelligence community at large, nsa, cia actually do a fantastic job today about pieces of this. so first of all, in terms of identifying the money and using that as a tool to identify who the people are and then pursuing them either through covert action or law enforcement or elsewhere. the second piece of actually stopping the broader flows from
10:53 am
charitable organizations to bad pieces is admittedly probably the most difficult piece here. i think we have done pretty well with established organizations. hamas, hezbollah. the fbi's done a tremendous amount of work pursuing these large organizations. it gets much more difficult for the. intelligence community. and i don't think we've done as well the more diverse those networks become when you're dealing with smaller charities, individu individuals. and so i think it is something we have to continue pursuing. it is worthwhile. there's a return on that investment. it is, again, this is a penny wise pound foolish. because it doesn't cost a lot. and it is also an important way if done well, again, to build partnerships with the community. to talk about the charities that are doing good work.
10:54 am
but then not alienate the community when you shut down a charity because some of the money has gone to bad things. and, you know, the muslim community like every other community has to understand that just because they think a charity a good, some of that money may, in fact, be diverted to very bad things. and if the u.s. government takes legal action against that charity, again, it is not a war against islam. it is a war against certain elements funding things that are contrary to u.s. law and principles. may i one -- just very quickly. senator, much of what this panel said, i do agree with. i absolutely, again, i want to echo the good doctor's points. i'm just calling him the good doctor now because i'm not trying with the last name. but i want to echo the good doctor's points on the lack of funding for public diplomacy and engaging this ideologically. what i want to stress is it has not been aversion to the discussion because it is so uncomfortable.
10:55 am
it has not been due to some political correctness that people say we better not call it islamic extremism. it has been deep thought about what the right language is. what the problem is. and then i think, and i hate to say this, but congress bears responsibility for this as well in lack of strategic vision and funding for programs in a global, robust way to match the many fantastic military intelligence law enforcement people that we fund. that to me if we can come out of this hearing with a commitment to do that with our partners in partnership and to make our executive branch official speak about this problem in a way that does not alienate partners, this would be more than solved. >> again, i appreciate your testimony. i agree wholeheartedly we shouldn't be penny wise and pound foolish in terms of resourcing. but it starts with the proper
10:56 am
definition of the problem, admitting reality, not denying any reality. understanding how i don't like this reality we're dealing with but we have a deal with it. the u.s. constitution does not have to be a suicide pact. we have to recognize that. i want to thank all the witnesses. i would encourage all the senators, all the members of the audience read the full testimony of all the witnesses. read the full testimony. i think that's probably pretty good start. so again, thank you all for your courage, for your time, your testimony. this hearing record will remain open until june 29th at 5:00 p.m. for submission of questions and answers for the record. this hearing is adjourned.
10:57 am
10:58 am
this weekend on "american history tv" on c-span3, saturday at 8:00 a.m. eastern on "reel america." >> secretary gorbachev. if you seek peace, if you seek liberalization, come here to this gate. mr. gorbachev, open this gate. mr. gorbachev, tear down this wall. >> president ronald reagan's 1987 trip to berlin. then at 8:00 p.m. on "lectures in history," hillsdale college
10:59 am
prf profeser paul moreno. >> advertisers are looking at this. young people begin to adopt their own styles of dress, the kind of music they listen to especially is very different. there's a kind of segregation, separation of youth culture from mainstream culture. >> and sunday at 8:00 p.m. on "the presidency," on the 45th anniversary on the watergate break in, an insider's view into the watergate scandal that resulted in her husband' bob halderman serving an 18-month prison sentence. >> the white house phone rings and i instantly assume it's that dreaded call from nixon. the conversation is surprisingly brief. the president wants john and me to chopper up to meet him at camp david at 1:30 today. when the white house phone rings again, i fight to stay composed.
11:00 am
that was ron sigler, press secretary, bob says. he's at camp david too. the president now feels very strongly that john and i should volunteer to resign. >> for our complete "american history" tv schedule, go to c-span.org. and we're live on capitol hill this morning for a hearing with epa administer scott pruitt on president trump's 2018 epa budget request. he's speaking for house appropriations subcommittee. this is live coverage on c-span3. it should start in just a moment. >> the committee will come to order. good morning. today we continue to keep all those affected by yesterday's events including our colleague steve scalise in our thoughts and prayers. we applaud the capitol police for the continued efforts to be the first line of defense

16 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on