tv United States ... CSPAN May 26, 2012 5:10pm-6:20pm EDT
energy supply, but we cannot rest on those laurels. we need to continue to develop an ever diverse sources of clean technologies. that is the key to the future. >> weekend and on a better note. thank you, mr. chairman -- we can and on a better note. thank you, mr. chairman. >> we appreciate the testimony. that will conclude the hearing. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> heading into the memorial day weekend, house majority leader eric cantor released a memo to republican members detailing the
summer agenda. what is the purpose in laying out the schedule so detailed so far in advance? >> essentially, if you look at what mr. kantor laid out, it dovetails very nicely with the things they are trying to push, which is continuing taxes where they are now, easing regulations, opening up plans for more oil and gas. they're trying to get out there what they're wanting to do over the next few weeks. and into the election season. >> in terms of the timing of this schedule released, does this have anything to do with the house being out for the next week or so? >> i'm not sure that is true. it is a curious choice to release it on the friday of a holiday weekend. perhaps they are trying to build a little momentum for when they do come back next week. i do not know exactly why they
chose this day. >> the coming week alone, we will see a significant amount of work. what will top the house agenda next week? >> they have a lot going on. in the senate this week, they passed an fda bill and the house will move forward with their own version of that next week. there is a defense bill going and they will also start an appropriations bill, spending bills for the upcoming year. tuesday night, i believe, they come back and they are filling it up pretty quickly. >> the majority memo also says that the timetable for voting on the bush era tax cuts is set before the august recess. why then? >> they want to do it sooner rather than later. they want to up the pressure on the senate. we saw the house speaker last week saying that this was a big deal for them and they will want to make this a centerpiece of
their election-year pitch. they want to make sure there are going to do it quickly and then it will be part of their message throughout the rest of the year. >> how do the democrats want to deal with the expiring tax cuts? >> huizar nancy pelosi say that she wants -- we saw a nancy pelosi said that she wants a quick cut on anything under $1 million. it is the same talk. republicans want to extend the same tax cuts for body. democrats do not want to do so -- for everybody. democrats do not want to do so for the wealthy. it is just a vehicle for them to define what is well the yet. >> you can read burnie becher's memo that c-span.org. next week will be the veterans
affairs spending bill, the fda go, intelligence authorization and more. live coverage of the house next week on c-span. >> on sundays, "washington journal" -- on sunday's "washington journal" we will talk to adam liptak about the supreme court cases and specifically those dealing with health care and arizona immigration laws. later, in washington post columnist will continue the spotlight. that is live tomorrow at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. we will look at the current state of politics and the economy in europe. we will hear from a state department official about u.s.- europe relations and the recent nato g-8 summit. this is about an hour.
>> good afternoon, everybody. it is good to welcome all of you. phil, welcome back. i think you all know that till gordon was a distinguished member of the brookings community for quite some time. even more to the point, he was the founding director of the center for the united states and europe. i might add is also a great pleasure to see the french ambassador here this afternoon. thank you for the support that you gave 2 brookings, and that
your predecessors gave to fiona hill, was -- and she would be addressing you from this lectern at the date of this conference, but she was locked into a commitment in beijing. but i want to assure you on behalf of brookings and the united states and europe that this does not represent a strategic pivot on the part of the institution or the center to east asia. it has been our pleasure, and i hope of some contribution to the policy community in partnership with the heinrich boll's foundation to bring the conference to you on an annual basis. and i think it is particularly appropriate that we should have filled with us today. -- phil with us today. he is secretary of state of
european affairs and is responsible for u.s. policy toward about 50 countries, as well as three key -- and i would add to that currently, someone challenged international institutions -- the north of montreal organization, the european union, and the european union -- the north atlantic treaty organization, the european union, and the european -- phil is back with us and will talk to us about president obama and his relationship with our friends and allies. after he finishes his opening remarks there will be a discussion involving as many of you as possible moderated by the director of research at the center. over to you. [applause]
>> thanks very much. it is always nice to speak here. i see many distinguished colleagues and many others that i am delighted to see again. i continue to feel somewhat guilty about the group -- the degree to which the obama administration rated perkins we took office just three years ago -- rated brookings when we took office just three years ago. i say to someone guilty because we have given a few of them back to the administration in the meantime. and in case, -- in any case, brookings is continuing to thrive.
i am also pleased to see how much the u.s. and europe continues to thrive under the leadership of fiona hill and justin bates. i may seem bias, but it seems the original logic we found it -- we have we found the center where we could connect directly across the atlantic with your, the case for having such an institution is as strong now as when at the center was founded six or seven years ago. it is hard to say that today's annual conference is occurring at a time of incredible activity in europe. he mentioned the g-eight and nato summits the president obama participated in, hosted in camp david and chicago just last week. and of course, literally as i speak of european union leaders are sitting down for a very
interesting dinner to confront the challenges in the eurozone and the question of how to generate jobs and growth. i will turn to the implications of these recent events later in and out -- in my remarks. i would like to take a step back and just recall how the world looked when president obama took office three and a half years ago. the topic for this session is the record so far. i think it is worth recalling the basic thinking that we had about europe at the start. i think is pretty simple to say. i think it is fair to say that in the midst of the challenges that the administration faced for some time -- if he think about the ongoing war in iraq, the ongoing war in afghanistan, the nuclear challenge of iran,
global terrorism, and of course, the greatest financial crisis since the 1930's, the strains in transatlantic unity compounded how to deal with these difficult issues. i think about the unprecedented divisions we had across the atlantic over iraq, but also questions about european engagement in afghanistan, this agreement with how to handle iran's nuclear program, and the relationship with russia that was probably at its worst point since the end of the cold war. a german poll taken in 2008 found that just 19% of europeans approved of our handling of international affairs. and only 36% viewed american leadership in the world as desirable when president obama came in, i think he understood the challenges that we face were so considerable that even with america's unparalleled power, we could not deal with them alone.
he came to office with the conviction that the u.s. could address these challenges more effectively by working together with partners. and he was convinced that we had no more important set of partners and -- in dealing with this set of challenges than in dealing with the democratic countries in europe. alliances are qualitatively different set of relationships than just coalitions of the willing. they include standing procedures and provide operational give the buildings that can be called upon at a moment's notice as we demonstrated in libya through nato last year. when president obama took office, these alliances were in need of repair. already in 2007, then senator obama wrote that the mission of the united states is to provide global leadership, grounded in the understanding that the world
shares a common security net -- need for security and a common humanity. he stated an intention to rebuild the alliances and institutions necessary to confront common threads and enhance, and security. in a speech he gave in berlin a year later, then candidate obama spoke about revitalizing these alliances. he observed that no nation, no matter how large or powerful, can defeat such challenges alone, and we are looking for such partners to deal with us alongside -- to be alongside us in dealing with this challenge. this administration has invested deliberately and consciously in strengthening its transatlantic ties with europe. next we, -- next week, i will depart with senator clinton for what will be heard 30th trip in
office as secretary of state. these travels have included ministerial meetings, summitt, and international conferences on a range of global issues, including afghanistan, sudan, somalia, libya, syria, cyber security, and women's issues, just to name a few. this commitment of time and effort to the relationship with europe, not to mention the jet lag that inevitably comes along with it, has been far from routine. instead, it has been driven by the profound belief that successful alliances require investment and that they pay real evidence. and we think it has. i believe one of the most important legacies of the secretary of state will be her revitalizing america's alliances, and first and foremost, our alliance with europe. a direct result of this investment is the following
pieces. i would assert that the united states and europe have never been more strategically aligned. this is not to say that there are not differences between us, but -- just as there are debates within the united states as there are in the european union. but we have developed a common agenda that enables us to join forces to meet the demands of a very challenging world to a degree that i do not think was paralleled not just in recent times in the previous administration, but the one before that or the several that preceded that. this unity of purpose is recognized on both sides of the year -- the atlantic. the german poll that i cited earlier said that 36% of europeans had faith in the president's handling and u.s. leadership in the world, and that is now 75%. and it is consistently in the
80's since president obama took office. this serves as well when we call on others to follow our global leadership, as we often do. let me give you a couple of examples to illustrate what i mean. i mentioned already president obama's hosting the g-8 and nato summits this past weekend. i think these two embodied the american leadership on the global stage. the president himself in chicago said one of his top foreign policy policies -- is for an policies is to strengthen nato, and that is exactly what we have done. we have nearly 40,000 european troops fighting alongside american troops in afghanistan for pretty much the past decade. we have sustained nato's largest ever overseas deployment. and from the beginning, not with
any serious financial pressures and domestic political pressures, the alliance has held firmly to the principle of in together and out together. 80 months ago, allies, isaf partners, and the afghanistan government -- 18 months ago, allies, isaf partners, and the afghani government agreed on a plan across afghanistan by 2014. this plan is on track. it was reaffirmed in chicago. and today, approximately 50% of the afghan population lives in areas where the afghan national security forces have taken the lead. this summer, that proportion will rise to 75% of the country, as we implement the third phase of transition. isaf leaders ended a leaders also established a milestone when isaf will shift to a primarily training and advisory
and afghan security will be in charge. we also believe it is worth recalling the tremendous -- 60% of afghans have basic access to health care facilities, which is nearly six times that of 2002. the number of schools continues to rise to more than 8 million. and perhaps most importantly, recent polls in afghanistan _ that the number of afghans who say that they supplies with the -- underscors that they sympathize with the alliance. the alliance also agrees on a plan for the future assisting
afghan forces. we did want to demonstrate to afghans, to the taliban, and to our societies that we were prepared to support afghan security forces after the end of 2014 in a way that will be necessary and the international community came together and made camp -- may political commitments of more than a billion dollars for the project after 2014, more than $1 billion per year after 2014. furthermore, the alliance reaffirmed its enduring commitment to the afghan people beyond the end of the combat mission. and in chicago, leaders to find a new phase of cooperation that will focus on training and advising and assisting afghan troops. all of this together demonstrate our ongoing commitment to working toward the shared goal of working toward a safer and more prosperous afghanistan where out i had no goals. -- no holds. -- where al qaeda has no hold.
we announced an interim capability for missile defense. that will for the first time protect european populations, territories, and forces from the growing threat of ballistic missiles as well as nuclear weapons. it is hardly a u.s. effort alone. turkey will be hosting a radar that will be placed under nato command. romania and poland will host land-basedbased intercepted. spain will home port ballistic defense missile ships. germany has also contributed the portable paging systems. france plans to supply radar. allied heads of states and government agreed to additional
voluntary contributions. the u.s. is making a contribution, but it is an alliance with europe playing a major role. very conscious of the tight defense budget that we face across the alliance. will also announce progress under the rubric. the commonly found allied ground surveillance system that will give the alliance the first time fleet-remotely-piloted drums and also the agreement to extend nato air pushing for the baltic states so they can devote their resources to other common projects. we also announced completion of the alliance terms of defense posture you we are well aware that measures such as these to
not obviate the need for new defense investments required. in chicago, president obama made that very clear to his european counterparts. in the wilson know that coming in these difficult financial circumstances, we should pool our efforts to max -- to the maximum extent possible. the smart defense initiatives and the concept of the alliance itself allow us to do that. finally, the nato summit recognized in the crucial role played by partners in nato operations. the libyan operation brought 28 allies together with five partner nations while isaf and afghanistan involved 22 non-nato troop-contributing countries. these successful partnerships demonstrate the extent to which the alliance has become the ub for our-- will hol
collective action. the alliance could not make decisions on further enlargement in chicago, but there is a positive message concerning macedonia, ga., and montenegro. secretary clinton made clear that nato's door must be open to european democracies that are willing and able to assume the responsibilities and obligations of membership. within the nato context, let me say a couple of words about libya. it is easy to take for granted the role that nato played in giving the people of libya a chance for a better future. but it was not a given that nato would play a significant role or any role at all.
it was in response to the real threat against be voting does a that authorization from member states to take all measures to protect civilians. the conscious decision to involve european allies but the nato alliance itself. during the first 10 days of this operation, the united states used its unique assets to eliminate libya's air defenses and leave the ground zero -- groundwork for a handover to nato. washington then passed over control to nato while continuing to provide the bulk of the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance in-year reviewing and other capabilities. every ally contributed through nato's integrated command structure. 14 allies and four partners provided the necessary naval and air force.
united states flew 25% of all sorties' while france and united kingdom amounted to 40%. a genuinely important role that european allies as much as the united states -- as france and united kingdom also played a role. the cost of a conflict in 1999, the united states provided the 99% of the strike sorties. in the vehicle it was the other way around. we're working closely with their european and international partners to help libya to provide a new inclusive and democratic system.
to take maybe the best example, take iran. negotiators are in baghdad meeting with the iranians. i think it is fair to say that the united states has coordinated with our european partners more closely than ever before. we have enjoyed an unprecedented unity with the european union in our dual-track approach in putting pressure on the iranian regime to meet its international obligations. but also being ready to undertake the diplomatic path to ensure that their nuclear program remains single. with the europeans, we have together agreed on european
measure 1929. and we have seen the eu decision to ban imports of crude oil, iranian crude oil coming to freeze the assets of the iranian central bank. those of you who have been working on these issues for some time, as i know a lot of scholars at brookings have, would have to appreciate the unprecedented nature of this cooperation on sanctions and the oil embargo which could not have been convicted just a couple of years ago or even six months ago. today, as we speak, the e3 +3 is in baghdad as we speak. not only are they united in iran, but i think the pressure on iran to abide by its international obligations has also never been greater. those two things are linked it
is the common pressure that we're putting on the iranians that we think has brought them back to the table. on syria, we have also worked very closely with their european partners to ratchet up the pressure on the regime through various avenues, including a couple rounds of sanctions. we have engaged in active diplomacy in the major bodies to unite the un body -- in the major un bodies to unite them. secretary clinton has joined her european counterparts and other regional leaders to coordinate our approach these goals and send a clear signal to site minimal success in the security council. i have been talking mostly better corp. sheehan with -- mostly about our corporation around the world. our agenda in europe has not
been diminished dunaway. there is what is sometimes called the unfinished business in europe, namely the integration of the countries into euro-dynamic community of democracy. we ask our european partners to address remaining issues across the region. the balkans region will depend on countries pursuing the reforms necessary for their integration in europe. we have said from the start that europe will not be complete until all day balkans are integrated into transatlantic institutions. croatia's succession to the european union sends a strong signal that admittedly difficult reforms bring genuine progress.
we are encouraged by the new bosnian government, efforts to meet the u.s. and nato integration requirements, including the passage of laws on census and state, as well as political agreements to solve a defense and state property issue. we look forward to seeing bosnia implement these requirements. we are pleased that cause so and serbia moving closer to europe -- you once again, the united states worked closely with its eu partners. we worked to ensure the and the recent elections in serbia that serbian citizens with dual nationality include those living in kosovo and can exercise their right to vote.
the eu facilitated dialogue and the means for the two countries to address issues that complicate daily life for ordinary citizens, but not only to the extent that party is could dissipate in the resulting agreements. we welcome the new president and serbia's future to work constructively. in that spirit, the united states and european partners to work together with leaders across a region on new ideas to resolve the challenges in kosovo, in line with kosovo's sovereignty and integrity. we need to help develop a framework that permits the normalization of practical labor relations. we want both countries to move on their path to european integration and avoid further zero-sum confrontation in the region.
with thewe're working eu and its member states to help the people of ukraine. we fully support ukraine's efforts to deepen its integration with europe, including steps taken thus far to reform the criminal procedures code. unfortunate, the european integration process has been hindered by limited progress on the political and economic reforms on a needed to move forward and what appears to us to be politically motivated prosecution -- selective prosecution of opposition leaders. closely working with the european union, we continue to call on the government of ukraine to releases individuals. the presidential election in march opens the door for reforms needed for closer integration with your parents will also meet see encouraging signs on the international efforts -- with europe. we also see encouraging signs on
the international effort. hundreds of political and opposition activists, including several presidential candidates were arrested without cause. we continue to call on the government of belarus to release these people. but me say a few words about president obama's record, which is the record in developing more productive relations with the russians. the president's approach to russia has been guided by the conviction that we could cooperate on mary's -- on areas of mutual interest wall talking about -- on areas of mutual interest while talking about opposing views. there is an impressive list of
mutually beneficial foreign policy achievement, including, just to mention a few, the new start agreement. they won 23 agreement on energy corporation. the military transitive arrangement. a visa arrangement to promote business ties, a major bilateral trade deal, and unprecedented cooperation with russia on iran sanctions. the list also could the conclusion of negotiations to welcome russia into the world trade organization, a goal that had been the objective of u.s.- russian of ministrations for nearly 20 years. we're currently working with congress to terminate the application of the jackson-vanik amendment for russia. lifting jackson-vanik and extending normal trade relations with russia are not gifts to russia. rather, they are in the fundamental interests of the united states in sustaining jobs
as well as ensuring the u.s. terms and benefits from russia's wto commitment and action. we would be disadvantaging american companies' relative to their competitors and other wto member states by maintaining jackson-vanik. there were three important corollary sin what is being known as the reset. he said the united states does not recognize -- u.s. maintains that sarin states has the right to choose their lines. we have not given an inch on any of these principles. indeed, our improve relations with russia have not come to the expense of our allies and our
values and we have continued to speak frankly better differences. i know some have asked whether the progress with russia that we have made in the past three years will continue under president written. all i can say is that we're certainly ready -- and to .resident plimptoputin all i can say is that we're certainly ready. we have to be realistic. we know that achievements going forward will be the result of hard work on both sides and will require continued focus on mutual interest. we know there are ongoing issues with just agreements, such as missile defense and georgia. there are conditions -- their contentious issues that have arisen over syria. but even as we discussed these difficult issues, we will continue to operate on the assumption that we have many common interest in russia and the attempted to -- and we can
pursue those while being very clear about the things we differ on and without sacrificing our principles or our friends. all of the common transatlantic achievements that have -- that i have outlined are impressive in their own right. i am referring to the great economic challenges that we face on both sides of the atlantic. as president obama has said many times commend the united states has an enormous stake in the evolution of the eurozone crisis. the european union is our largest trading investment partner. the key u.s. and its member states account for 58% of overseas development aid. when you combine that with the u.s., would provide 80% of the world's assistance. we need -- we provide 80% of the world's assistance.
sanders scored her message to european islandallies the need o sustain defense funding. underscored our message european allies the need to sustain defense funding. we talked about the risk that europe poses for the global recovery and we have our own financial crisis and responding to market challenges decisively and focusing on job creation and growth. we are a encouraged by the progress and our european allies have made in recent months, including significant actions that would have seen better reach a few years ago in ireland, portugal, and spain. they have reduced their structural budget deficits 5
percentage points since 2009 increased by nearly 12 points. monti has workednt on measures to free italy's market in just a matter of months. the euro area garments have taken steps to put in place 800 billion bureau fire wall for what we think is a -- 800 billion euro firewall for what we think is the reason. it will not work without financial support without governments to borrow at affordable rates and to keep the overall rates across the economy at reasonable levels.
we have also said that fiscal reforms are only part of a solution. the harder challenge in europe is to boost competitiveness and growth. much of this is for europeans on their own to do. president obama has undertaken the discussion with his european counterparts about how we can free up transatlantic economy, notably through the working group on jobs and growth, which is reviewing all options for transatlantic cooperation, including the possibility of a comprehensive free trade agreement. the united states welcomes the evolving debate in europe about opportunities for creating jobs and growth. at the g8 summit this past weekend, president obama led a discussion of leaders on the comprehensive approach to
managing the crisis and getting on a path to sustainable recovery appeared and reaffirmed -- recovery. the president and his european counterparts agreed on our shared interest in keeping europe's monetary union intact and remaining in gauge on the world stage to fight budget constraints on both sides of the atlantic. i have covered a lot of ground. let me conclude. in closing, would like to return where i began, which is that the united states and europe have never been more strategically aligned. this is not an accident or the fortuitous for temporary alignment of geopolitical tectonic plates. it is instead the result of a deliberate and conscious strategy to invest in a partnership with the world's most advanced military capable and democratic people who share our values and ideals.
our history will determine whether this approach and this investment was a wise one. we believe, has a have argued, that it has already paid off and will continue to pay off for years to come. thank you very much. i look forward to your questions. [applause] >> thank you very much. we will have about half an hour of questions before the beginning of the next panel. i will use and abuse the privilege of the chair to ask a few questions first before going to you. i would add come in the tradition of the respectful, the tradition of respectful debate that we have always had at the
brookings, i would like to push in number. concluding this issue of the coalition of the willing and the risk of seeing the alliance hollowed out for lack of minute training capabilities. you started your presentation using the point that spending alliances was the goal of the administration since they provide much more support for the u.s. natural interest than coalitions of the willing, meaning presumably what has been done before. some of the examples you mentioned, including libya and syria, it is precisely the coalition of the willing. march 19 and early blast year, the cooperation in libya, nato
was not involved as such. it was an ad hoc coalition between basically the u.s., france, and the u.k. than when nato got involved, there was a contact group at the political level involving the other partners. it seems that the borders between the coalition of the willing and the alliance is blurred. of course, there is the presence of a strong mandate on the un security council. but in terms of these shade of the group that intervened, it was certainly a coalition of the willing. in syria, because of the obstacles that the u.n. security council has confronted, again, it is a soft title of the coalition of the willing. the obama administration has been continuing efforts that were started by the bush
administration, which is also the p five + one group. i could cite other examples. you mentioned that nato is a global hub. but it seems to me that it is inevitable to present politics administration on relying primarily on spending alliances than a coalition of the willing. >> there are a lot of interesting points. i would never make the claim that standing alliances, and nato in particular, is the single response to a real international crisis that we face. clearly, as you look at a different range of challenges that we face, whether in europe or in syria or libya, afghanistan, iran, you need to be flexible.
there are some cases for which the standing alliance or existing alliance or nato will be mr. perpich. there are others in which it does not work. in the cases that i mentioned a program for nato, afghanistan and libya, i would stress the benefits of doing it within the formal organization. we did have to come to libya. the could have said let's do this among the handful of countries that want to do it and not worry about doing it with nato. we made a conscious decision to do it with nato in the comfort that we could show leadership and get countries to follow along and use the alliance and genuinely think it paid off. i think i mentioned in my speech that it is easy to take nato for granted. but without the investment in an alliance, the personal connections that come from working together and the interoperable the knee of
military forces and the standing command structure, you cannot whip up a military operation. even for some of the activities that you deny use the steny alliance for, the very fact that it exists as it did you do not use the standing alliance for, the very fact that it exists is very helpful. you will be putting different groups with different types of leadership or. but it does not take away from reality that standing institutions and alliances remain hugely valuable and we have been acting in a way to make it flexible and adaptable to the question at hand. in the partnership question in chicago, naida and afghanistan has never just been -- nato and afghanistan has never just been
alone. we have taken steps over the years to make nato more adaptable so that countries were not in the alliance can work with it. in the case of libya, you have that extended not just a european partners, but also for countries in the arab world and the middle east. yes, you are right, it is a nuanced spectrum rather than just a choice. to use an alliance or two-year use ad hoc groupings? but it is a very long way from saying let's just see how it goes with a coalition. >> the massive reality -- it has been calculated by some experts that budgets could go down in year from 2006 to 2014 by about a third of what they were.
certainly come inside nato, the balance between what the u.s. is doing and spending on one hand and what europe and european members are doing and spending is changing rapidly in favor of the west. you mentioned the importance of having a standing alliance with procedures with the habit of working together. how confident are you that we're not witnessing a pulling out of the alliance because of this and five years from now we can still -- >> this is a real concern. i will not sugarcoat it in the lease. we have concerns about declining defense budgets and continued investment in defense across the alliance. the trends you describe are
real and they are of great concern. this is an old issue and people have been worried about nato and european defense spending as long as the alliance has existed. but i think qualitatively -- i think this is a qualitatively new dimension due to the financial crisis. as you suggest, it would be a sad irony if libya turned out to be the demonstration that europeans can provide important resources and assets for the military operations you plan for, which they did, being not just france and britain, but ends it would be ironic if libya demonstrated that but then in a few years we permitted the capabilities to atrophy to the point it was no longer the case.
as i mentioned president obama raised this issue with his counterparts and underscored that. goodness knows we are sympathetic to the fact of getting out -- fiscal houses in order. nobody doubts the need to cut budget deficits and examined very carefully defense budgets. we do have to be careful lest we be not able to have defense ax. this is why we have all the emphasis on the smart defense initiatives within nato. if ever there was a case for more pulling and integration, it is now. one thing libya did was show both the benefits of commonly funded assets and also what remained.
it enabled allies to benefit from the information without everyone of them having to buy their own plane. that is why we decided to gather at the nato summit this time to collectively purchase drones. you have a couple of choices. you can expect the united states to do everything, which i do not think is a viable option. or you can expect every country that once intelligence to buy its own advance drones, which are very expensive. or you can collectively by some. i will get back to your first question, collectively by them so it cost less for everybody but everyone can benefit. that is what we have done to procurer allied defenses. once the are procured, every
ally will have access to advanced intelligence information without having to spend the necessary money, let alone the drones. the infrastructure, the technicians that can read the data. there really is cost-effective. there are a number of other examples we pursued in chicago. i mention baltic their policing. it does not make sense to expect the baltic states to spend on advanced fighter planes when others can do that job. that is why we are focused on more efficient spending, more pooling and spending. that is why the alliance itself is valuable. it does not replace the need for continued defense spending. it is necessary in any case. >> i should now be quiet and let you ask questions and still give answers. i will group questions by 3.
please identify yourself when you ask a question. wait for the microphone, please. >> public opinion polls in the united states did not give a lot of support to the administration's position in afghanistan, much less the commitment it will take after our troops of left. all we have heard is the reason we are there is to deny al qaeda safe haven. the real reason is because, in my mind at least, radical islamist regime in afghanistan would make normalization relations impossible. if you agree with that, why does the administration shape a more coherent and believable position
to convince the american public on this issue? >> thank you. second question? >> said jeffrey stacy. i spent some time now working directly under you buy in a bureau that workers love with the. i have two questions. the first is when we began in 2009 to meet with our european counterparts i recall an interesting dynamic. it was strange when i began meeting european counterparts, i experienced a cold shoulder. i noticed others were, too. to use a metaphor that we weren't welcome back to the table but we were not allowed to speak up right away. -- we were welcome back to the table but we were not allowed
to speak right away. we had to persuade the people, at most levels of government of our renewed commitment and trust. we had to do it in personal terms and with actions and not just words. i wonder if you had a similar experience yourself. the other position takes off from the record you just outlined it. it is valid in terms of the claims and the record speaks for itself. there is an interesting element to this that is also a little alarming. how much more dependent the united states is on europe. is it not true that at least since world war i the u.s. has not be more dependent on europe in economic terms -- i think even strategically. the question is, is libya the high water mark for going
forward with the u.s. during our own and realigning in certain ways. what are europeans going to do are we now more dependent on them handling some of the burden themselves. >> thank you. one last question here. then we go into the back. >> thank you. the turkish authorities have mentioned the possibility of invoking article 5 if stability from syria just below their border. what would be the best response for nato? >> all important topics. on afghanistan, i think we have been quite clear what our objectives are and how we are
seeking to accomplish them. it does not been buried different than they were at the start. -- it has not been very different than they were at the start. the united states was attacked from afghanistan. we set out not just to get rid of the taliban but to make sure afghanistan could never again become the place from which the united states and other countries could be attacked by a global terrorist organization. to do that, we and our allies around the world determined it would be necessary to give support to democratically elected government that needed outside help. we invested an incredible amount of resources to give them a chance at doing that. i started with what president
obama inheritance. i cannot speak to decisions made before that. his view was clear. we did have a chance to succeed in this way. he increased our military efforts in the short term in order to enable us to get out of afghanistan and the longer term. that is exactly what he has been doing. the surge that the united states undertook to reverse the taliban's game has taken place and we are in the process of turning over responsibility to the afghans. it has been a long and expensive investment. the president's view was that after all of that investment to simply say, this is too costly and not really our problem, we would just leave -- that would have been irresponsible. with our partners with what has been a real american leadership, these 50 plus
countries are working as hard as they can to put afghans in a position to will provide for their own security so we can responsibly and the war. that is what we are on track to do. that is well more than 50 countries came together in chicago to recommit to. we are determined to succeed. i think we are succeeding. what you describe is the relationship with europeans starting in 2009. i have to admit, i do not remember the nine month purgatory that you referred to. i think we were warmly received and welcome that. the enthusiasm for the obama administration was very high. perhaps it was excessively high. there were maybe expectations we created that would have been hard to live up to in terms of
this glorious new chapter in transatlantic relations in which we would disagree about nothing and march to gather as in some past that never existed. i think we were welcome from the start. the message that i conveyed just now we try to convey to our partners from the start. we were absolutely sincere about wanting to work together in a mutually beneficial way. we would listen and we would share leadership. we have the same interest and value. i guess it was pushing on an open door trying to articulate this message and it has been reciprocated by our european partners. it goes hand and hand with the point you made. it has been demonstrated that to
deal with the tremendous challenges that we face, we do need these strong democratic like-minded and capable partners. think about some of the examples i gave and imagine doing it without the partnership of europe. you do not have to imagine it because it has been tried before. it has been the united states oppose the policy for 15 years to apply sanctions -- we have not treated with iran for decades. we tried the diplomatic pressure approach on our own and it did not get us anywhere. i think it is fair to say it was only when this became a international effort with the europeans a really started to sink and with the iranians that they had better start getting serious with the nuclear
program. and imagine doing that without partnership. could we do what we are doing with our european partners? i suppose. it would be a lot more costly to us. i do not know where we would get the nearly 40,000 non american troops that have been fighting along for a decade. there are not from other regions. they are nato allies are other european allies. is it dependents? maybe we could call that dependence. i would not amount -- i would not want to an imagine doing it without the maximum partnership with europe. would we like even more support from europe on more resources and support? yes. we have this discussion with the europeans all the time. on none of them what i want to -- that was part of my point. i sided with what the president said. that is another case.
we had an interest and stopping gaddafi from -- could we have done that along? we did not want to for a range of reasons. from the legitimacy to the aftermath and funding that is necessary. you can debate whether you want to call that dependence, but i would say we have got about all these things with a full appreciation of what europe can bring to the table. i think we are stronger because of it and we are more successful in dealing with these problems. just to be clear, turkish leaders have alluded to article 5. they have not invoked it. i have not invoked article for. they have briefed nato on the
situation in serbia. they briefed nato in g-8 on what is going on in the region. they have not asked for formal confrontations. i do nothing that is on the agenda. we reiterated this in chicago. the united states is committed to a credible article 5. if a country's sovereignty or integrity is threatened, we have an obligation to treat that as an attack on ourselves. we take it very seriously. i think that is what turkish leaders suggested when they had referred to article 5 is simply sovereigntyo their and integrity is sacred. were it to be attacked in any way, that would be a very grave
matter. >> thank you. we will just take two more questions. wait for the microphone. >> thank you. stephen help. china occupies this unique niche in being a unique power and also a developing nation. many things about china, when you look beneath the surface it is quite shaky. the idea of china as a failed state is too terrible to contemplate. it seems that the administration opposed the policies do not recognize the complexity. policies doation's not recognize the complexity. a social program to create jobs and china. without the policy -- to replace it with something else, china would be in a lot of trouble.
the administration's policy of pushing them on the currency exchange, it gives members of congress ample opportunities to bash china and not recognize the real reasons behind it. marines and australia. this feeds into a narrative in china where they are suspicious of the west. if we acknowledge the history for very good reasons. it perpetuates a relationship that is not one of cooperation. it seems to be one more of confrontation when really the relationship seems to be there is an opportunity to create one more about cooperation and mutual recognition of each other's needs. >> a question in the back. >> thank you for the opportunity.
secretary clinton said in chicago that- -[unintelligible] how to deal withu him especially? >> the question about china takes me a little bit further away from my presentation on obama's europe record and i would want to go. i would say, it is not unrelated in that people should not think about the challenges we face in china as an alternative to what we are trying to do with europe.
when i present a record of engagement with europe in dealing with the rest of the world, it is a recognition of the reality that is precisely because we face tremendous challenges and other parts of the world including those we mentioned about china that we need this partnership. i gave you a large number of examples of how we are working with europeans on the global agenda. i think i would be the first to acknowledge that if there is a region that is not developed, it might be in asia and specifically china. that is something we would like to change because we have an interesting partner just as we do with north africa, the middle east, and africa. far from accepting this as just the reality,