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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  June 17, 2014 12:00am-2:01am EDT

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three months. the point is, is the effort to invade was to be successful politically, it would have to incorporate taking the major cities. if the major cities were to resist and street fighting begin a necessity, it would be prolonged and costly. the fact of the matter is, this is where the timing of this whole crisis is important, russia is not ready to undertake that kind of effort. it will be too costly in blood, paralyzingly costly in finances. it will take a long time and create more and more international pressure. so, i feel we should make it clear to the ukrainians, that if you are determined to resist, seemly they're trying to do so, we'll provide them with
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anti-tank weapons, hand held weapons, hand held rockets. weapons capable of use in short range fighting. this is not arming of ukraine for some invasion of russia. you don't invade countries as large as russia with defense weaponry. you're more than likely to resist. that can permit them effective operations to terminate some of the violence that is being sponsored on the borders between ukraine and russia. i think would help in any case to contain the risk and the temptation to resolve this issue by force of arms. on the russian side, in the context with a move of great ecstasy of a crimean which is
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quick. it can be quite strong and appealing to a political leader with desperate needs and measures of success. but at the same time, we have to engage in some exploration of possible arrangements for compromise. especially if it becomes clear to the russians and mr. putin that either destabilizing ukraine or taking it by force poses great risks and may not be attainable. that has to be effort in engaging in a dialogue. what should be a compromise, i think it's simple. ukraine can proceed with its process publicly endorsed by a majority of ukrainian people becoming part of europe. but it's a long process.
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they have been engaging in the process. already for 60 years. in other words, it's not been very quickly. therefore the danger to russia is not imminent. but at the same time, clarity that ukraine will not be a member of nato. i think that is important for a variety of geo political reasons. you look at the map, it's important from a psychological strategic point of view. ukraine will not be a member in nato. by the same token, russia has to understand that ukraine will not be remember of some mythical union that president putin is trying to promote on the basis of this new doctrine of a special position for russia in the world and special claims outside of russia vis-a-vis some of its fellow natives.
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ukraine will not be a member of the russian union. ukraine can have a separate trade agreement with russia, particularly taken into account the mutual benefits of certain forms of exchange and trade are mutually beneficial. agricultural products for example from ukraine to russia, industrial products. not many people realize that some russia test rockets, most of the engines for russia civilization and some the rockets used by the united states are produced in ukraine. it's a profitable and successful industrial enterprise. that, therefore, should be continued . i think something like this might become appealing. it should be surfaced. it should be surfaced in the context of an open, not convert,
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but action designed to convince russians that any use of force, will have negative but enduring consequences for russia itself. not involving a threat to russia's security by involving raising cost of the assertion of russia's power. in my view in that context, nato should also act somewhat more assertively in reducing the insecurity of those nato countries that border russia and happen to have on the average about 25% of the population. i speak specifically of estonia. i would think it would be very productive in addition to america with european states,
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france, germany and great britain, deploy some symbolic forces. so they're there too and not just americans on a regular basis. so that that would reaffirm the fact that nato stands in the context of this problem together. in international politics, symbolism is as important as the decisiveness. and symbolism can avert the necessity for extreme measures. given the current consequences of the very massive expansion of nato in the last several decades, to 28 members, it must be also appropriate in the late of the ongoing experience that we're in the process of assimilating to take another look at the structure of nato itself. i have in mind particularly a review of the historical paradox involved. it's not much mentioned but
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potentially very important article five. article five is the article that provides for the procedure, the alliance follows and undertaking military response to an aggression directed at its general or at one or two or more of its member. article five has a provision that decisions do engage in hostility has to be unanimous. it means a single country has a veto. it was the united states that insisted on this provision when nato was first formed. it insisted on it in order to obtain popular support from it in the american congress from the isolationist portion of the american pollty tick.
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it would violate american tradition of no foreign entanglements. the argument was this gives america what it needs to avoid a foreign entanglement. unfortunately today with 28 members of varying degree of capacity to participant in military action, the situation has become reversed. it is some of the new lies that maybe attempted to invoke article five. not entirely preventing nato from responding. if that would happen after the long debate, much resentment and threats, the country trying to prevent nato from acting will
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join. i think it would be wiser to review this provision in a more patient atmosphere in spite of the circumstances that prevail. one possible solution might be adoption of the provision that there will be no veto right in the alliance for sustained enduring, underperformers of agreed commitments. some members of nato don't meet their commitments even by some remote approximation. hence their membership in nato free ride all together. why should a member that doesn't meet nato commitments -- then have the right to veto the other
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member's right to engage in self-defense. it's an anomaly. as this crisis is gradually results, i hope nato will take another look at it and will also look at the issue of additional new members in nato more critically. it doesn't follow the country who security nato has an interest has to be in nato. nato can have an interest in security but without having it in nato and have a variety of understanding how it might respond. there is some talk of new members in the e.u. some of these will seek nato membership. some countries have obtained nato membership by being territorially remote from the possible conflicts on the east-west dividing line. i think more discretion here
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might be beneficial. some pressure on those member who wish to be active members in nato to do more to meet the commitments they have formally undertaken. finally, looking much further ahead, i think that one way or another, with or without the compromise solution, crimea is going to become a serious economic burden for russia. there's no way that kind of economic activity, made major source of tourism and visits on a large scale coming into ports and foreign tourist engaging in trade, collection of souvenirs and so forth can be sustained. as long as international community doesn't formally recognize the corporation of
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crimea into russia, it means that the exploration of underwater resources within crimea's territory of the sea. in brief, russia faces the prospect of the necessity of subsidizing on the significant scale. economic activity in crimea to the benefit of its citizens. prices and consumer prices have already risen. this situation creates a potentially serious liability for russia which already is in a relative weak economic position. beyond that, there is the potential reality, which i think will become a fact as ukraines succeeds, that russia in the
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process has created the enduring reality of hostility towards russia on the basis of 40 million people. ukraine have not become under russia historically. certainly there's no comparison between its tradition to russia. the pols have fought for their inspection against the -- inspection against russia. it's becoming very intense. the inspire new generation of ukrainian born and freedom and national sovereignty reflected the strongest. ukraine, therefore, will evolve not on enduring problem for russia in that respect, but the permanent loss of the huge s.w. -- swath of territory suffered by
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russia. this may in turn eventually begin to work against this new mythology regarding russia's place and role in the world with which i started my presentation. it maybe refuted by reality. this is why i'm increasingly hopeful that the new emerging russia middle class, realizing that the kind of mythology that putin has adopted and a significant portion of the less educated and more -- they'll be reminded of that imperative every time they look to the east and ask themselves what does that mean for the future of russia. thank you. [applause]
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>> thank you so much dr. brzezinski for the brilliant remarks. very clearly lays out your views on russia motivations and western actions. we now have the privilege to have comments by alabama steven -- ambassador steven pifer. served for 25 years in the state department including ambassador to ukraine from 1998 to 2000. >> thank you very much. it's awfully hard to follow dr. brzezinski when he covers such a broad bit of history or current history. he does it in such a comprehensive and terrific terms. i would agree completely that the thing that the west needs to do is support ukraine.
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it seems to me that the best review to the crimean policy would be three to four years from now, ukraine is looking each day more and more like poland. a normal democratic rule of law european country. i think the west can do things to help make that happen including terms of economic support and buy things like energy diversification. i would second his point about provision of military assistance to ukraine. light anti-armor weapon and defenses makes sense in turns making sure the russian military is not eager to go into eastern ukraine. we ought to be providing weapons to the ukrainian military to
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affect that calculation. particularly in the case of defense systems, there's almost sort of an obligation for nato which over the last ten years has been running programs to destroy stocks of ukrainians. second direction is the point of assuring nato countries. particularly those in central europe who today are in much more nervous about russia, russian companies, russian actions. the u.s. military to deploy four companies to poland. having ground forces like that which do not have heavy equipment and have capability. i would agree it would be useful to have them joined by european
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forces. a dutch company paired with the american pane in estonia. a make clear to russia that the commitment is a nato commitment. its not just an american commitment. it can be done in a way that is not provocative. i still managed to keep west berlin free by their presence. the third i think the west needs to work is the question of sanctions on russia. the goal of sanctions should be to change russian policies. there's evidence that comes in now that suggest that those sanctions which today are modest, have had an economic impact on russia. for example, russian companies in 2013 were able to sell foreign currency bonds about
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$43 billion. in january and february they sold those bonds about $6 billion. since march they sold zero. i think the sanctions are effective. i worry that the west has not handled the sanction process well. the last day in which the united states and the european unixed sanctions together at the end of april, the russian stock market gained 1.5%. on may 2nd, chanceller merkel said if russian interfered with the election, there will be sanctions. a substantial portion of the ukrainian electorate could not participate in that election because of activities by arms supported by moscow. in the -- again, we've seen
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continued problems including the introduction of heavy weapons on the part of tanks. i think fairly sophisticated air defenses as evidenced by the shoot down of the ukrainian 76 on friday evening. i think the west needs to be imposing costs if we're going to try to encourage the russians to shift their policy. the last point, it does seem to be that if the russians are prepared to be a part of the solution, you can see the elements of a compromise. the government in kiev talked about decentralization of power. which makes sense. governors should be elected and not appointed by the president. they talked about some status for russian language which are some of the concerns expressed in the east.
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there's talk of early parliamentary elections which will be a good step. it would revalidate the democratic legitimacy in the parliament. as dr. brzezinski suggested, you can see the elements in terms of ukraine orient itself in terms of foreign policy. drawing close to the european union. you can certainly finesse this issue and make it clear to the russians that nato is not on the agenda for the foreseeable future. president -- those the elements i would agree on the case of crimea. perhaps way to handle crimea is to set that aside.
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it's not going to be addressed early on. my own analytical adjustment, it's very hard to see a scenario in which ukraine is able to gain sovereignty over crimea. that does not means the west should accept it. until such time. that can be an issue you put down the road. the other piece this year might put together a basis for a compromise that would help mend the divisions within ukraine and i think could be an acceptable way forward. i think the big question here at the end of the day, is that still acceptable to russia. i'm not sure that the russians are happy just with ukraine saying no nato. i think the russians still are unhappy with the idea that the ukraine wants to draw. this is not just the president but it's also the parliament and majority of the ukrainian people. when you look at the association
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agreement and what agreement does, it's a big if, if the ukrainians implement it. it is out of moscow's geopolitical orbit. that remains a sticking point for the russians. >> thank you very much ambassador pifer. i think we want to quickly to get to your questions and comments. before we do that, i like to give ambassador ischinger an opportunity to respond to dr. brzezinski's remarks. >> very little to add. first, i mean this only half cynical, we can say thank you vladimer putin for reminding us that there is a good reason for
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having nato. nato was in a process of getting off the radar screen a little bit of the major european and transatlantic debate. now it's back on the radar screen. that's good. second, president putin has also by doing what he did reminded europeans that there is an overwhelmingly good reason for trying to get our act together in terms of speaking with one voice for the e.u. to be a political actor that can exercise a significant role as it should, representing 500 million people. third, i think these events are in the process, are already reenergizing the debate about how best european countries, including my own, can unburden
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itself from too great dependency of energy support from russia. that's all very good. second point, when you discuss delivery of support including weaponry to ukrainians, the one problem i believe we would run into is that the ukrainian military is in terrible shape. ....
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these are strange bedfellows.
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this is a rather fundamental challenge to the very concept of europe. i will stop there. thank you very much. >> thank you so much. let's go to your questions and answers. if you could please wait for the microphone. >> thank you all. i remember you talking in the cabinet meetings at the carter white house. i think it was your warm-up act. this was just magnificent. thank you very much for coming here. my question is about an organization that got very little mention but wolfgang recently spent a lot of time connected to it. the osce secretary general was here about a month ago and it was the roundtable in ukraine.
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the turnout was substantial. 60%, better than our elections. it operates by consensus. could it play a bigger role in thatiating an outcome here would be satisfactory both to and russia and benefit ukraine. >> i suppose it could. stage, the this discussions were in formal and to the press open and conducted in private. right now we are not at a stage in which is likely, but certainly the door should be open for that.
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make two comments on what was said earlier? ourarms i'm talking about different. they cannot be used offensively against russia. require a lot of military sophistication, which isns that if the lee terry as organized as you like to say they are. it really works. i could regale you with some stories about what happened when the russians tried to storm us, and certainly there were examples in world war ii of urban warfare. it's going to be painful, costly, and prolonged. aspect that pertains to
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the dialogue with the russians. right now the russians are in a phase in which they are trying -- the interesting thing about the western reactionaries is that they like the content of what the russians describe as the russian global civilization. ist is to say antimodernist socially, sexually, reactionary. it is very self-righteous. this is what makes the new western right wingers all of a sudden the equivalent of the old who lovedft-wingers russian communism. we are seeing in flip around here. my guess is that the changing character of the russian society over time, particularly the middle class in the big cities, is going to spell the doom of that wants two things happen. putin is not successful in
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andtarily asserting himself at some point is no longer the central player. > it remains to be seen will o.s.c. could be in the settlement. if you did have a settlement it seems that o.s.c. mechanisms could be hugely important in gaining confidence on the part of the ukrainian population. >> if i may, one brief world on that. we had on the 17th of april a meeting in geneva etween john kerry, sergey, the european union and the ukrainian government. that was so far, unfortunately, only a one-time event and in my view, it is highly desirable that a second geneva, geneva two as we've continued to call it, should take place and .c.e. i think is a good oh, to
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-- organization to support and help imp police department the kinds of decisions that -- implement the kinds of decisions that were taken already in geneva. one that still is not implemented, unfortunately. i-do agree that o.c.e. has a continuing and important role to play in supporting on a different level needs to be hammered out between the u.s., european union, the ukrainians and, of course, the russian government. >> yes. please state your name and affiliation. yep. right there. >> steve laramie. ran corporation. a quick comment to wolfgang and then a question for dr. brzezinski. wolfgang, that statement that you mentioned in the -- regarding troops and so forth,
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that was pred sized -- the beginning of that sentence is very important because it said, as long as the current security situation does not change -- well, it certainly changed when one country invades another and then annexes it. tries to annex it. i think the situation most people would say has radically changed and therefore western policy is no longer obligated by that statement. i wanted to get your reaction to china. how do you think china looks at this? they certainly were not very happy with the annexation of crimia. what implications to you -- do you think this might have for .s. relation with china?
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>> i have to say that, regrettably, in my view, neither china nor america has -- have handled their relationship all that well in the last couple of years. i'm not thinking just of the american press. i'm thinking of some american official pronounce y789s and then actions such as the pivot speech, which unfortunately, i think was not well-worded because its intent was not to give the impression that the united states is committed to the physical military containment of china but the emphasis on the pivot, on the reallocation of troops, of the deployment of troops in australia, which, as far as i know is not under the threat of an imminent attack from papua,
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be new begina so it had to be china and gave the chinese the impression we are siding with whatever neighbor with china has a territorial conflict with china. that's an exaggeration but that's the way they've interpreted it. on the chinese side, there has been a dramatic increase in public pronouncements in the officially controlled and crensoirpped press but also in the statements of particular officials from different parts of the government. extremely itary is hostile to the united states. so i think this relationship needs some careful tending and correction. however, on the russian-american "conflict," the chinese have been scrupulously neutral with their fact, of course, not backing
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e russians, who would have wished for some backing the --. in the u.n., the chinese abstained. they did not vote against it as the russians did. it was a reflection of their own national interests more than anything else and incidentally, not much noticed in the american press, israel. the official beneficiary of our military assistance and they took this neutral position for their own reasons and interests. one shouldn't be too surprised by that the russians did it too. in the russian-chinese relationship, what we're seeing russian depence on china.
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-- depends on china. the fact remains that that the major financial investments are going to be made by the russians in communications, in facilities, pipelines and so forth. and the chinese are going to ave alternatives in terms of rice as soon as iran opens up, as soon as they reach out to deal with saudi arabia and so forth and therefore at some point the chinese will be able to go to the rush and say we value this treaty but you have to lower the price because the world price is going down and we have these options and the russians will have no choice. they'll have to accommodate. which means the benefit of the treaty will be increasing the benefit both to the chinese. >> thank you. yes, center?
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>> thank you. office for corporation trailed investment. i have two questions. one pertaining to trust. i think one of the common elements they picked up on is there's a definite lack of trust of the russians and my question is what makes you think that we can build trust with the russians because it's on the basis of our actions over the previous years in terms of invading countries, in terms of spying on our own citizens, in terms of illegal intentions, in terms of our own disregard of international law. which which -- what makes you think that we can somehow convince the russians to sit at a table and trust us if we don't trust them, with good reason given what you've all described. how do we get back to building trust? and the second question pertains to the coast of --
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cost of doing what you've said. what's the cost in supporting ukraine for the europe and for the u.s.? how much is that going to cost and can that be borne, the burden, by the recovering economies of europe in particular? >> thank you. >> i can tans second question. ukraine has struck a deal with the international monetary fund and the i.m.f. has agreed to provide ukraine $17 billion over two years, provided that ukraine does the necessary reform steps that are required in the program. so the way the i.n.f. doles out the money, every several months there's a review if ukraine has met the condition in terms of reform stems, then they get the next -- all the money. there have been a lot of i.n.f. mission to ukraine over the last 20 years and usually the mission would go and sit down
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and say here's the problem and the i.n.f. official would say here's what you need to do. in march when they met with the new acting government for the first time in dealing with independent ukraine, the acting government said here's our to-do scomplist it was the right to-do lust. i think people like the acting prime minister and the president understand the economic reform steps that ukraine has to take. there's been discussions with you cranian governments about these for 20 years. the real question will be can they sustain the political support for these steps? for example, to get access to the -- they started the program on may 1. ukraine raised the price of heating to every household. that's a great time to raise the price of heating because nobody needs it but in november and december when the temperature is down in the 20's and teens, people are going to
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notice that their heating bills are way, way up. at that point is the government going to say to the public with we need to do this over the next couple of years? there are other fund available for the european bank for reconstruction and development and the european union. ukraine has access to billions over the next couple of years, primarily in the form of low-interest loans and that should help ukraine get through this period if they do the right things. >> would you like to take on the trust question, the first part of the question? >> i'll be very brief. mean, i don't think it is fair to compare russia's behavior on ukraine and ith western imea w behavior going that's a very popular thing for russians to
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claim, that we are at fault, because, as russians say, we, the west, we aggressed the former yugoslavia. we did what we did in libya and, of course, in iraq, etc. i believe that it is important to note that, for example, in he case of kibba, where we, the west, certainly the united states, went to the security council of the united nations and obtained, actually with russia abstention at the time and endorsed activities directed at libya. the same is true in a number of other activities. council o the security i don't know how many times trying to find a way forward on syria, trying to find a way forward ons so vo and on
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bosnia, etc. i am not aware that the russian federation even tried not even once to seize the security council to authorize russian action on crimea. so i think the comparison is not fair. i would grant you one point. the european security architecture as it exists with institutions like nato, the nato russia council, osce, etc. is not working the way it should. we do not have a sufficiently functioning body of institutions and rules. that's my take from what we are witnessing. so that needs to be improved and repaired but in order to do it you need to have a minimum of trust that all actors are singing from the same page and that's very hard now that we have had such a terrible loss
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of trust in the predictability of russian policy as it happened over the last few months. >> thank you. david, what will finally be our final question. >> thank you. i want to ask ambassador ischinger on his assessment of whether germany is prepared to support the policies of deterring the chevy analyst russia that dr. brzezinski described. even though germany will pay significant costs in doing so. >> i think yes, but the question is how? how exactly? f you take the majority view
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among the german public, you find a lot of skepticism regarding our jointly adopted decision on sanctions. you will find a lot of skepticism regarding the questions of reps -- weapons delivery. -- deliveryy, a lot of skepticism involving deployment of military force to eastern nato countries. in other words, there are obstacles to overcome in terms of public opinion and, kuwait frankly, as much as i personally agree with the point hat our eastern nato members need to be reassured -- should be reassured by certain types symbolic y, including or not so some bollig military deployments, i think that our
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priority number one needs to be to stabilize ukraine and, quite frankly, by sending a few or anes to westonia poland, we are not directly doing anything to help these poor you cranians to handle their problems. the first objective, priority needs to be things that will help ukraine directly. i know, having been involved in these discussions how to deal with the ukrainian crisis over the last month or so. i know of no leader, certainly no leader in europe, ho -- who has spent more time trying to explain to president put than he's making a mistake, a big one. and i think chancellor merkel has also been quite successful
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-- surprisingly successful -- in convincing the german business community, which has a much larger stake in the russian business than the u.s. business community, that the german business community should not oppose sanctions against russia. in fact, just over this past weekend, the leadership of the german business community, the b.d.i., issued a statement supporting with pain, as they said. for us this is painful but we ccept this has to be the prerogative of political -- ision making among trans transatlantic parties and if they believe that sanctions are needed and maybe more sanctions are be it then so be it. that's a painful thing for someone to say who represents many hundreds, if not thousands of large and small business who
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have been doing a lot of business with russia and with their sub sidries in russia. so it's not a small thing. >> i very much agree with what wolfgang just said about the problems, especially the problems of the europeans when it comes to subsidies -- not subsidies, sanctions. i just wanted to add a little bit to it. namely, it's true that their difficulties in that regard are greater than our difficulties, but we also have expenses. for example, the president has just committed -- 1 billion for the reinforcement of central european security. that will come out of the projects -- pockets of the voters but it's a step in the same direction so that we assume certain obligations and difficulties, costs as well. and i also think that, in any case, solidarity is what is essential and solidarity need
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not be only tangible. it can be symbolic and anything that our european allies can do to show that the issue of european security is of common concern and a common responsibility is good. it's not only anti-russian. it is a stabilizing step. in the last self-years, the russians have he'd -- held several military exercises on western soil. in fact, belarusa. large army formations, repelling an alleged attack and then moving forward and the last one ended with a simulated nuclear attack on the central european capital. nuclear attack. no one has used nuclear weapons since 1945. these are things that we haven't paid much attention to
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but they're part of the sequetion and building material has to be considered in the face of solidarity in the face of challenge. >> thank you so much. this was a terrific round table. t me congratulate ambassador ischinger. the book highly recommended to all of you. thank you, ambassador rzezinski for our keynote. we're adjourned. thank you so much. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] >> coming up, we will hear from john negroponte former ambassador to iraq and former director of national intelligence on the situation in iraq.
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on ericman ornstein cantor's primary loss and what it means for political polarization and congress. and wendy young, president kitchen needs of defense will talk about her groups work to help unaccompanied immigrant miners. we will take your calls, facebook comments, and tweets. washington journal, live every morning at 7 a.m. eastern on c-span. quickstart, housing and urban development secretary nominee julian castro appears before the senate banking committee. the san antonio mayor was nominated by president obama to replace shaun donovan, who has been tapped to be white house budget director. live coverage at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span3. over 35 years, c-span brings public affairs events from washington directly to you, putting you in the room at
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congressional hearings, white house events, readings, and conferences, and offering complete them a gavel-to-gavel coverage of the u.s. house, all as a public service of private industry. we are c-span, created 35 years ago and brought to you as a public service by your local cable or satellite provider. like us on facebook and follow us on twitter. imf managing director christine lagarde announced theay that they will revise outlook for economic growth to 2%. she explains the decision at a news conference in washington. this is a half-hour. >> thank you and good morning to all of you. welcome to this press conference . i am assuming you have received a copy of the statement before
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hand. i'll try to focus on the key messages that we have. background, it's been a while since we have not done a concluding statement when there is no domestic crisis, when there is no recession, and that has given us a chance to actually focus on long-term growth trends as well as the structural reforms that we see as ways to support both growth and jobs. turning to growth and numbers, you will have noted that we have readvised downwards our growth forecast for 2014 down to 2% and that is largely attributable to the poor result largely, not re entirely, but largely weather related. it's not the main message that we want to give on growth. we believe that this slowdown is temporary and better prospects lie ahead and we're aying that on the basis of
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employment numbers, indices of production that much shown gaining economic momentum. there are, of course, risks to the outlook and we've seen weakness in housing and business investment that could continue to be a drag in the few. nonetheless, we believe that there will be growth in the coming quarters at about 3% or possibly higher than that. in 2015, we expect growth to hit its highest annual rate since 2005. now, we've also looked at the end for growth going forward and essentially based on the aging of population and productivity trinled, which have not kept up with earlier expectations, we have readvised downwards our projection for the long-term growth rates of
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the united states to around 2% and that is clearly significantly lower than the 3% average that we have seen between 1948 and 2007. now, let's look now at the -- what we call the scars of recession, which are still visible. the first one is the long-term unemployment, which is too high, with 3.4 million unemployed people and those who have been unemployed for over 27 weeks. labor force participation is also low, too low, as too many productive workers have simply stopped looking for work. 50 d number -- almost million americans live believe powerly -- poverty line. what are our policy recommends -- recommendations in the face
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of that? three key areas. one focus on jobs, growth, and poverty reduction, in the face of those numbers that i have just mentioned. second area for policy recommendations is the macroeconomy policies and third one deals with the financial stability. so let's star -- start with the key objectives, how to create more jobs, how to achieve stronger growth, how to alleviate poverty. you know there, is no single murtha is going to deal with all those issues and is going to be really an issue of putting all hands -- and it's going to be really an issue of putting all hands on deck in order to address all of them. we believe that for one, the u.s. should invest in its future and as we emphasize in our statement, the priority is to invest in people and to invest in infrastructure, to encourage innovation and stimulate productivity and try
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to get people back in the labor force. but growth in and of itself will not be enough and we also believe that additional measures should be taken to mitigate enqualities. you've heard me say that on a global basis, because it's a factor that applies pretty much across the world and i'm going to now mention some of the measures that we believe will be helpful in the context of the u.s. market. we recommend targeted policy that is help pull -- poor families make ends meet. first of all, we recommend an expansion of the earned income tax credit, the eitc. it's a program that worked. that has been around for the last 40 years that is currently restricted to families with children and we certainly recommend that it be expanded beyond the family circle.
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to complement the expansion to have eitc, we also argue for an increase in the minimum wage, which, in the u.s., relative to median wages is among the lowest in evolved economies. 38% so two key measures -- expansion of the eitc coupled with an increase in the minimum wage. second set of recommendations that relates to fiscal and monetary policies and clearly they are there to lay the groundwork for jobs and growth that i have just mentioned. starting with fiscal policy. as we have seen before, it remains critically important to dopt and implement a credible, median term fiscal plan to bring down debt and secure sustainability.
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now, we said that. we have said that we will probably continue saying that because we recognize that it's quite difficult to achieve from a political point of view. however, we also acknowledge that there has been progress, clearly common -- demonstrated by last year's passing of the budget act. we also see room, provided there is this fiscal plan -- we see room for some fiscal support today to help lay the foundation for fiscal growth tomorrow. that includes education, job-training programs and childcare subsidies. yet making room for these important policies requires also getting to grips with long-term drivers of rising debt. and this will need to involve controlling health care costs, reforming social security, as well as improving the tax
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system, which is to come plegs, has too many write-offs and loopholes and generates too little revenue. finally, i would highlight our recommendations on changes to the fiscal institutional framework, the goal of which is to try to avoid debt ceiling drinkmanship and government shutdowns. that's for the fiscal policies. turning to monetary policy, we believe that a gradual interest rate normalization is the right approach. our forecast suggests that the economy will only hit full employment by the end of 2017 and inflationary pressures will stay muted and here there is a bit of -- policy caveat and it's also a bit of inconsistency between the uncertainty around the outlook, which require that is the fed
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be nimble, and it certainly is, while at the same time, though, there seems to be a large amount of certainty in markets on the way policy rates are going to go. so in the face of that, we certainly believe that the feds hould continue to deploy clear communication, which will be more important than ever. we've made some recommendations in the field of communication and we believe, notably, that possibly more frequent press conferences by the president of the fed -- sorry, by the chair of the fed -- might prove efficient in order to dispel this risk they just alluded to between the uncertainty on one hand and the certainty displayed by markets. and that brings me to my third and final area of policy recommendations, which touches on the financial stability. the crisis might be fading but
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financial stability risks certainly have not gone away. and indeed, it seems pretty clear that they have gradually built up during the protraited -- protracted period of exceptionally low interest rates. the current market creates also the potential for an abrupt shift in financial markets. now, don't get me wrong. monetary accommodation has been the right thing to do in the wake of the crisis. the challenge now is to minimize the potential side effects and here we believe that the u.s. needs to continue to pay close attention to what is happening outside the banking system in the so-called shadow banks and in other non-bank activities. these activities often fall outside the standard nets of regulation and supervision and
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yet can still be the magnets for excessive risk taking. what do we sflemmed contentious oversight and proactive approach. some specific oks including supervisorsry scrutiny, higher risk rates and tighter limbs -- to limits on large exposure certain assets. we also see scope for a larger federal role in insurance supervision and regulation, and while there has been progress in those areas, there needs to continue to be such progress. let me also point out that we're now working with the u.s. authorities on our next financial stability assessment program. it's work that will require a bit of time and our team will
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work for the next 12 months so that when we see each other next year, same time, you will have not only the concluding statement of the article iv but you will also have the report of the financial stability assessment program. o in con -- conclusion, we see prospects looking up for the u.s. but we also believe that attention must now turn to the kinds of policies needed to lay the foundation for growth that would be sustainable, that will create jobs, and that will require investing in the long term and not being short siggeted as to what is -- short-sighted as to what is needed from a structural point of view both in terms of investment but also in terms of fiscal approach. thank you very much and i will take a few of your questions, which i see already. >> thank you very much, madam la gamplt may we focus the questions on the u.s. today,
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and let's keep them short. start with the lady right in the middle. that's you will. >> thank you. my question is on the communication system of the federal reserve, you said that the chairwoman of the fed should have more press conches. now we have about four times press conferences. what do you think is appropriate? and also, how would you evaluate the communication system, not only inside the united states -- you -- i know you want to focus on the united states, but how to -- do you view the communication of the federal reserve with others? >> your question is twofold. on the first part of your question, you're saying essentially the fed today communicates four times a year and has those heavy-duty press
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conferences. what is our refplgs? first of all -- recommendation? first of all, we would observe that the communication by the fed is pretty efficient and needs to continue to be first quarter. given what i described as the uncertainty versus certainty. in other words, uncertainty about the outlook, question about the texture of the labor market. questions about the participation rate. questions about the longer term unemployment. on the one hand, and the certainty that seems to be displayed by markets. we think that it's really important that the fed continue to do that. now, how can it do better as the economy evolves? and that is -- and as the crisis, you know, goes away and
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as monetary policy clearly will evolve? we make two recommendationles. one is that there be more frequent press conferences and hat from four it could move to grafflely, maybe picks and that -- gradually, maybe six and hat it be as often as required given the descrip si between the certainty and uncertainty and as the certainty becomes more explainable that the fed takes the opportunity to explain. the second thing we recommend is a monetary policy report. now, that is often used by monitor institution that is adopt an inflation target monitor policy in various places. some countries such as the u.k., australia, new zealand and it could be considered -- i'm not suggesting that it be implemented right away because
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the fed has has clearly long-standing institutions with his peculiarities and that has to be respected as well. but those are the two areas. the more freekt frequent press conference being privileged over the other. u asked me about the intercentral banks' communications. whether it's on the occasion of some of the g-20 meetings and so on, so forth, central bankers actually meet on a regular basis. they don't necessarily comment for you the cope scope and free agency of their meetings but they do -- frequency of their meetings but they do moment. having talked to many of the bankers that communication is increasing and improving because there is a wilder recognition of the potential spill ducts to the places where
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monitor policies are decided. >> gentleman to the right here. >> robin harding from the financial times. the bank of england governor ecently warned that the u.k. interest rates may need to rise earlier than the markets currently expand. do you see a difference in the u.s.? -- similarity in the u.s. and if so why not? >> our market assessment is that generally once tapering will have been completed so the point where there will no longer be purchase, then tightening might, in short order, take place. we're not that certain about the shorled order -- short rder and our numbers on un employment and employment numbers and the uncertainty
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around those numbers, coupled with the fact that we believe inflation will remain under target for a period of time, we don't see that short order to be march 2015, let's put it that way. and i'll also observe probably that the pickup in the u.s. economy is not as strong as it seems to be in the u.k. economy. so that's an additional factor. >> yes, lady right here. just to follow up on this question, so can you give us any more indication of when the i.m.f. thinks until when the rates could be appropriately at zero and what do you think the markets are not understanding on the fed communication or is it the fed that's not communicating it right? >> no, i want to dispel the idea that we would be arguing that the fed is not
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communicating right. we believe that the fed is communicating rightly and what we're saying is that it could consider to communicate more frequently as the economy picks up. as the markets move in the direction they seem to be moving, in order to really clarify the uncertainty surrounding unemployment numbers, inflation numbers. core inflation numbers and its forecast for growth. so it's not -- we're not saying it's not communicating right. we're saying it is communicating right. but what we're saying is as uncertainty fades away, hopefully, it will be even more important for the fed to continue to communicate rightly and maybe a little bit more frequently in order to explain very clearly its monitor policy
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going forward. as far as figuring out the tea leaves of the market reactions, i don't think that i could actually do that competently. >> my third question was -- >> we don't have a sixth -- fixed daytime. we don't think it would necessarily be in short order after the end of the tapering programs. that's what we assessed. do you want to add to that nigel? >> we make an assumption in our forecast pretty much along the lines of the market that the fed would lift off around mid 15 and move off after that. we also have inflation well below target through 2017 and also relatively high levels of unemployment. there's a lot of slack left in the labor mark. >> yes, sir? >> ian, "wall street journal." first of all, the most important question, the u.s. is
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facing off against ghana today. who are you supporting in the world cup for that game and broader favoring in the world tournament? secondly, what are the consequences to the u.s. and global economy if the fed moves in line with market expectations instead of your prognosis or recommendation for a slower exit? especially in light of the financial risks you outline. guard against ly any prognostic concerning soccer. or what i call football. i was delighted to see that the french team did as it did yesterday and good luck to all teams. now, it's really difficult to speculate about what is likely to happen that we don't think
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will happen. but clearly, you know, earlier than timely tightening could possibly have consequences on the u.s. economy in the first place. and could possibly, you know, con strain, -- constrain, restrict, the recovery momentum that we have observed and would not be positive from an employment point of view and second, could also have more severe consequences in terms of global economy -- economic outlook, where the spillover to emerging markets would leave a mark on their respective growth. so it's from that sort of twofold perspective that we would be looking at it. >> thank you. >> lady right here. yeah. > thank you.
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in a rourlt -- report the u.s. growth prokts prospects have been lower. potentially from 2.8 to 2%. to what extent the lower mark will affect the rest of the world, especially emerging markets like china? thank you? >> as i said, we have readvised downwards, probably conservative live but essentially on -- conservatively but essentially on the very low and unexpectly low q-1. we haven't seen the final number, by the way, of q-1 and given the growth in the annual growth rate of any first quarter but i think our key message is that this we see as temporary and we see numbers going forward in quarter two,
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three, hopefully four, as being a lot stronger and trending around 3%. yes, there will be spillover to other markets to the extent they're all strong into connections -- but i wouldn't overemphasize them given the temporary nature of this bad number in q-1. >> hello. i have a question on the minimum wage. where do you see the level of minimum wage and don't you think this increases our ridlock in washington? thank you. >> we believe that the increase in the minimum wage would be helpful, particularly if coupled with an increase in the eidc. so it's the two together that
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we believe would be very helpful. when we look at the number of where it is today, it's clearly within the three lowest relative to minimum wage in all f the o.d.c. countries, adds 38% of the median wage and given the other numbers they mentioned, the 50 million americans living below poverty levels and the number of unemployed people, we believe that an increase of that minimum wage would be helpful from a microeconomic point of view. we're talking about significant numbers. when you have 50 million people living below poverty level, many of whom are working people, not people who are just not doing anything. that's why we are recommending it. now, as to give you a number. is it 10.10?
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this is something that needs to be decided by -- clearly, but i would emphasize that there were sates in which minimum levels have been raised to try to reduce those poverty levels. >> thank you. gentleman in the front? >> good morning. the statement doesn't mention the ongoing unwillingness of the u.s. authorities to support and implement the i.m.f. reforms. have you given up hope on this? >> no way. no way. i would never give up. never give up. and i was a player in this organization except on the other side when the u.s. authorities campaigned actively for the reform and i want to see it through so i would certainly hope that the authorities both at the
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administration as well as at the legislative levels appreciate how help and feel necessary it is to actually implement the reform so that the i.m.f. can play its role as prescribed by the articles. >> ok, looking for other questions. >> good morning. >> good morning. according to e, the national times, the i.m.f. discussed a way over bailouts. the i.m. sfmplet discussing changes to its rules that will on their struggling debt as a condition. can you comment on this? effort it's an ongoing but we -- that we have
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undertaken and will continue to undertake in order to improve and fine-tune the sovereign debt restructuring range of issues. it's not just about extending aturity, having this intermediate tool in the tool box but looking at the whole range of issues and we will continue to do that. nor g is neither final approved nor ready yet for resolutions to be put to the board and it's certainly an area when we need to reach out and talk to all the stakeholders and it's a dialogue that has been ongoing anyway where we need to participate and we need to provide the expertise that we have accumulated over the last 70 years given changing
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circumstances. it's hard work. it's highly technical and it needs to be well-articulated d also based on informed views around the community from all -- from the entire spectrum. >> the last two questions and i see the two gentlemen here.
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>> as you would expect me to say so, we don't intervene between corporate entities. both they are commercial entities that entertain commercial relationship. see certainly hope for the stability of that part of the world and for the stability of supply, that the situation can be addressed promptly and satisfactorily between the commercial entities and the negotiation. strong hope >> thank you. this is the last question. >> josh, associated press. madam director, in the downward revision for growth in 2014, it looks like weather played a big role.
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what does that take oh tell -- tell us about the stability of the economy given that impact? >> i think it says two things. one is, we believe that this q1 result was a temporary occurrence. with temporary outcomes that will be mitigated by stronger growth going forward in q2q3 and hopefully ongoing. however you would have noted, we have revise down our forecast for growth trends in the united states to two percent. we are facing this aging population issue. we are facing this relatively issue, which is why we're commanding various long term
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policy reforms to address aging and productivity. it tells us another thing, which is that extreme weather occurrences have a serious effect on the economy. extreme weather occurrences have repeated much more frequency in the last 20 years than they had in the previous century. i think that's reason to wonder about climate change and how to deal with it. incidentally one the accommodations we put in this report deals with carbon tax. >> thank you very much madam lagarde. >> just a compliment of the u.s. economy. it is based on when you look at the household balance sheets,
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they have strengthened significantly, corporate balance sheets have strengthened significantly. we're expecting the next three quarters to be up. our concerns are on the structural issues and the important issuesçfk
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>> coming up next, united nations oversight. >> tuesday, health and human services secretary kathleen sebelius talks about lessons learned from the health care open enrollment period. she's at the enroll america national conference in washington. you can see her remarks live starting at :30 eastern on c-span2. president obama is expected to sign an executive order preventing federal contractors from discriminating against lgbt employees. tuesday the president speaks at a gnc
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lgbt fund ds raiser in new york city. coming up, a discussion on united nations transparancy, and then allegations of corruption and fraud in the organization. >> in the auditorium, we welcome those joining us on our heritage.org website and those joining us today via c-span. we would ask everyone here in the house to make sure their cell phones have been called off as a beginning courtesy to our program and we'll post the program on our heritage home page for everyone's future reference. hosting our discussion today is brett shafer, r.j.k. research
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fellow in the international regulatory affairs, part of the margaret thatcher center for freedom. he analyzes a range of foreign policy issues focusing primarily on the united nations and affiliated funds and programs and frequently speaks and publishes issues related on the world body and its activities. in 2009 he edited the book "conundrum, the search for alternatives" which features several experts examining an array of international activities and responsibilities conducted by the u.n. he is a frequent visitor to the sub-saharan africa as well and has written extensively on economic development, peace and security issues in that region. he first joined us here at heritage in 1995 from march 2003 to 2004 he worked at the pentagon as an assistant for international criminal court policy before returning here to heritage. please join me in welcoming brett schaefer. brett?
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[applause] >> good afternoon. welcome to the heritage foundation. as we noted on the flyer, in recent years, there have been a number of various stories, reports, and other sources revealing a troubling number of scandals, mishaps, misappropriations by the united nations and its affiliated organizations, and i'll go through a few of them to give you a sense for what we've seen. earlier this year the associated press reported the united nations office of internal oversight services failed to pursue cases of corruption over the last five years, including major cases inherited from the procurement task force that was disbanded in 2008. over the past few years, francis scurry, director of wipo, have been accused of overtly authorizing the transfer of dual use technology to iran and north korea and acting illegally in an effort to identify the author of anonymous letters accusing of
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sexual harassment and improprieties and was recently elected to be general director of wipo. in late 2013 the u.n. dispute tribunal ruled two missile blowers retaliated against for exposing evidence tampering by a top u.n. official charged with investigating corruption were themselves retaliated against and -- by that top official who was their superior. the former spokesperson for the u.n. mission in darfur recently revealed in an interview to "foreign policy-making zone" the u.n. has routinely denied, concealed, or refused to report evidence that attacks on civilians in order to make the situation in darfur appear more -- to appear better or more stable than it actually it. all this happened while u.s. secretary-general ban ki-moon
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repeated his goal is to make the u.n. more accountable and effective. today we have three speakers, two in person and one that, unfortunately, is going to have to appear via skype due to personal reasons. and each of them have come at the issue of transparency and accountability in the united nations from a different perspective. first we have edward patrick flaherty, an american lawyer and senior partner in a swiss law firm of schwab, flaherty and associates in geneva and focuses on representing whistle blowers, staff members and third party working for or injured by international organizations such as the u.n., wipo, the world health organization and international labor organization, james wassertrom is a u.s. diplomat that serves as a anti-corruption embassy in kabul, afghanistan. when assigned to the u.s.a. peacekeeping program in cose, -- kosovo, he blew the whistle on a conspiracy to pay $500 million in kickbacks to senior kosovo
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officials. he identified the process for dealing with whistle blower retaliation first hand and can offer insights to its strengths and peculiarities and how it compares to the u.s. in similar procedures. finally, roger appleton was an attorney with the u.s. department of justice before being asked to serve as deputy chief legal council for the independent inquiry committee for investigation to the u.n. for oil food scandal. his distinguished service in that role led to him being named the chairman of the u.n. security task force charged for investigating fraud in the u.s. peacekeeping operations. until earlier this year, bob was director of investigations and senior legal counsel for the global fund.
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he recently joined dave pitney l.l.p. as a partner and due to unexpected events, as i mentioned earlier, he'll be appearing by skype. following presentation, we'll have time for a few questions and answers from the audience. and before we begin, i also want to note we invited the u.n. to provide a panelist for this event. unfortunately, they were not able to provide one. so without any further adieu, ed, would you lead us off here? >> sure. thank you. >> welcome, everyone. thanks, brett. i just want to thank you and the heritage foundation for inviting me today. i followed brett's work from afar for a long time, as with james and bob, and i feel a bit like the piper here given the distinguished backgrounds of the two other panelists, i'm just
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they often say is that a lot of their standards don't apply to them or any of the other international organizations, which is also part of the problem. but as brett said, i represented when they often say is a lot of their standards do reply to them or any of the other international organizations, which is often part of the problem. as brett said, i have represented a lot of staff members during the years i've been at geneva and i have brought a number of cases both internalally and also to the court of human rights. one of several of my more notable cases was the case of ruluvers andck vs. others. he was accused of sexually assaulting miss sperzack. the case was investigated by the u.n. internal investigation office. their report found her reports drble credible, but koffi
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anan decided it wasn't credible, for some reason, and put the report in the trash bucket and exonerated mr. lubbers. she then came to me because there was no remedy in the internal system, nor could we bring a case in geneva. the assault happened in geneva, by the way. we then tried to bring a case in u.s. federal district court. we did bring a case. it was dismissed because of the immunity of the u.n. we went to the circuit court and challenged the i immunity of the unas unconstitutional. unfortunately, although we did get argument, we didn't get much consideration in the decision. i still personally believe that the immunity of international organizations in the u.n. is unconstitutional under u.s. law. i think eventually it will be overturned. hopefully in my lifetime or my clients' lifetime.
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but that remains to be seen. haitian survivors and victims of a cholera epidemic, where the cholera was allegedly introduced into haiti after the earthquake by u.n. peacekeepers which caused approximate 8,000 deaths and 750,000 illnesses or sickness. people were hospitalized and whatnot. the u.n. has refused to impanel the dispute resolution body which is set up in the general convention on privileged and immunities and so the haitians have been left to bring an action in u.s. district court. so i'm right now the case is at the district court level. the u.n. has challenged the case on the basis of the immunity. i expect the case will be dismissed and then it will be appealed presumably to the second circuit and i will probably
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be writing an amicus for several years ago i founded an n.g.o. called the center for accountability of international organizations in geneva and on behalf of that n.g.o., or presuming that the case is dismissed, which based on the jurisprudence of u.s. law to this point, i think will probably happen. brett asked me to just open briefly about what some of the problems are for u.n. staff members, whistle blowers and whatnot. as a practitioner, the big problem is you have a system of immunity where the international organizations are not subject to local laws at all, whether you're sitting in new york or geneva, nairobi, anywhere, doesn't matter. you're subject only to the u.n. internal rules and regulations and that obviously creates a problem, particularly if you have criminal activity because the u.n. doesn't have any criminal code. so if in the case of lubbers, a
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staff member, high commissioner of refugees commits an alleged criminal act, the only recourse of the victim is either internally or to try to go to the local courts, but then because of the immunity, it has to be lifted by, in this case, it would have been by the secretary-general. but that very rarely happens. so what you have is you have a case of -- with the internal system, this internal justice system set up in all these international organizations, the defendant is also the judge in a sense. they run it, they fund it and create the rules. so it's not a very fair system, as many have said, there's absolutely no accordion of arms whatsoever in this system. so you have perverse outcomes. what's happened recently in many of my cases, i mostly litigate before the u.n. appeals tribunal which deals with most of the u.n. organizations, the u.n.
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proper, and then the international labor office administrative tribunal which also is based in geneva and there are about 40 different international organizations, intergovernmental organizations that subscribe to the jurisdiction of the i.l.o. and often you bring a case on behalf of a whistle blower or a disgruntled staff member, injured staff member, injured third party, and you win on the merits, whether it's an employment case or whether it's an injury case, but you then get pending damages. and you have no other recourse. that's the problem. what i tried to do more recently is challenge the u.n.'s immunity before the european court of human rights. and actually, there seems to be more room for potential success there than i've had in the u.s. courts because in a more recent case, the european court found that a employee of the kuwaiti embassy in paris who had been
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fired and then tried to sue in the local labor courts in paris and had his claim denied because of the sovereign immunity of kuwait, the european court found he could in fact bring his claim. because he was not performing any sovereign functions, that they couldn't deny him his civil rights to bring his employment claim. now, in the united states, in the u.s. courts, the u.s. courts have viewed employment matters as protected by the sovereign immunity. so i think there is some room, some potential to use that case by analogy for staff members who work for international organizations, at least within the jurisdiction of the european court which covers some 37 to 38 european countries, including russia and ukraine, that they in fact may apply that and we might be able to get around the immunity in those courts.
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what the problem is you have is no one guarding the guardians, the proverbial problem of who is going to be in charge, who is providing the oversight. in theory, it's the diplomats. it's the member states that are supposed to be providing the oversight and accountability for the organizations, but diplomats make terrible overseers. in geneva particularly, in many international organizations, the children, spouses, relatives of ambassadors have been hired as interns or staff members or consultants by these international organizations and in fact, many ambassadors after they finish their term then go to work for these international organizations. this also creates obviously a clear conflict of interest. no one wants to upset the apple cart and they foresee when i'm done with my ambassadorial career i can go work for the u.n. somewhere so i don't want to change anything that might make
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me the skunk at the garden party. this also happens, i find also quite a revolving door between state department, foreign ministry officials who again are there to be the overseers of the organizations but ultimately end up working for the organizations. so there really is -- there is no effective oversight, and the internal legal systems, and this is what jim can speak to in much greater detail about his own experience, just provide no real justice because it's a system that's set up by the defendant, it's controlled by the defendant, run by the defendant. so i find that very, very difficult. occasionally you do get a win for a client but for the most part, statistically, just for example, the i.l.o. administrative tribunal staff members win less than 30% of the time. so it's not a very effective system. there's no effective system of discovery. as a lawyer, you want to have --
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i mean, you're dealing in administrative law, many things are done on paper. and to prove your case, you want to see the documents, you want to see communications. to get those document is virtually impossible. it's worse than pulling teeth. and whenever i ask for -- in every judgment i ever get, particularly from the iloat, they always admonish me for my fishing expeditions because i'm asking for documents that are pertinent but they still continue to claim that well, you know, if you don't have the documents, you haven't proven your case so that's the end of it. just very quickly, what can be done? i think the immunity in my view is the major problem. there are times when the u.n. and other coercions should have the immunity. if they're in congo in a war zone, no doubt about it. but in terms of claims that arise in new york or geneva or vienna, there's no need for it
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and they're developing countries can functional legal systems that more than adequately can address many of the claims that arise in these organizations, whether it's sexual assault or sexual harassment or termination, things of that nature. how that will happen is many different ways. the problem is the now the u.n. immunity arises out of the organization promulgated in 1945 and ratified by the u.s. senate in 1971, i think. so in one way it gives the u.n., i should say, absolute immunity and that was the issue in the lubbers case where we tried to attack the action saying how can sexual assault be a part of the mandate of the u.n. high commission for refugees? and the judge in the second circuit very plainly said i
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agree with you, but look at this convention? it's absolute. there's nothing we can do. so there are several ways to address it. instead, if the immunity is applicable and appropriate, you can raise it as an affirmative
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defense, and the judge at that point should dismiss. right now, you never get to discover, you never get to the heart of the matter in a case brought in u.s. court and in many courts nationwide, because you file the claim, and the judge says, have you absolute immunity, and the judges do that, because that's what the jursprunes says. two other quick solutions that i have, one is to prom gate a u.s. fraud claims act, similar to the federal fraud claims act. which is, the federal fraud claims act turns individual whistle blowers into private attorneys general where they can bring acks on behalf of the federal government to recover fraudulent obtained funds. i think there is room for omething like that in the u.n.
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how do you enforce things like that? if you can't get rid of immunity, this is an alternative, any award made to this tribunal, pursuant to the u.s. freedom of information act, is to reduce any of those awards from the amounts that have been allocated by congress to the u.n., which i think brett recently wrote something saying that the direct assessments are $4 billion or $5 billion a year, and i think all-in it is something huge, so double that at least. so that's another aspect, at least. so i can go on. can you ask a lawyer to tell war stories, and it is hard to shut him up. i think that sort of gives a general over zs view of what the problem is. for me it really is the immunity. today in the 21st century, there is no reason for the u.n. and
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other international organizations to enjoy an absolute immunity that larkens back to the day of kings and queens. no government today enjoys absolute immunity. the preveiling theory in international discourse is a restricted theory, except with the u.n. so i think you have to -- you have to address that at the root of it. only then can you have effective oversight and accountability in these organizations. as i said, you know, the diplomats haven't done it and they will never be able to do it, and it is up to people like jim and bob when he worked at olis to try to bring thesing organizations to heal, and to bring them into the 21st century. thank you. [applause]
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>> as you know, my name is jim waserstr. m and i am a u.n. whistle blower in the flesh. what i'm about to say that is nothing to do with the u.s. government's position vis-a vis the u.n. this is my personal experience and my perm tale. i worked for the u.n. the last 28 years. for the last six of those i was attached to the u.n. peacekeeping operation in kosovo. part of my responsibilities was oversight of public utilities, and in the course of my duties, i discovered that, well, there's an allegation at my colleagues in the u.n., as well as the senior fellows in the kosovo government were up to no good. possibly of fixing a bid that might have generated a $500
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illion kickback. >> i turned that over to my over-seer of the operation, and we decided i would participate in an undercover investigation. in the meantime, my counterparts found out, and they trumped up charges against me. since we were administering the province at the time, i was -- they controlled the police and justice system. so they, on a weekend, when after i had been accused of all kinds of wrongdoing, and i was defending myself in higher circles of the u.n. operation there, they blocked me from
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leaving, they arrested me at the border. brought me back to the my partner, an illegal search of my apartment, confiscated materials. in the end, i was put under investigation for a year. there were, actually, five investigations that went on simultaneously. three against me criminally or administratively. one was an investigation that i was working on with oios, and one was an investigation that i asked for and was granted on retaliation, because i viewed all of this as retaliation. after a i was cleared of any wrongdoing. the investigation that i had cooperated in, the report vanished. we don't know what happened to it. never saw the outcome. and for me personally, the retaliation investigation, the investigators at ioios came back with the finding that there was
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absolutely no retaliation involved, despite the fact that i was arrested and there was an legal search and seizure and yes all the terrible things i had said had happened, had in happened, there was no retaliation. this was random acts by rogue actors. i found that to be further retaliation. so in 2008 my fellow solo practitioner and i filed a claim in the u.n. tribunal. i was one of the first whistle blowers to take the ethics office which was responsible for protecting me and which i felt had done a horrendous job in protecting me, took them to the u.n. tribunal. after 40 years, the u.n. ignoring six orders of the court to turn over documents, which goes to ed's point about the lack of ax access to information in the u.n. -- u.n. system, this
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was their own tribunal ordering the secretary general to turn over documents on six owe indications and he didn't do so. eventually the judge turned the documents over to my attorney and me. and in my view, those documents supported my claim. so in 2012, the dispute tribunal in new york ruled in my favor. that was a very important victory for me personally, and i think for all the whistle blowers, because it was the first case of a whistle blower actually winning in the u.n. ispute tribunal courtroom. he decide today have a separate
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trial at a later date. after several months, the judge changed his mind not to set this for trial. he said he had sufficient evidence. we presented evidence of the damages i had suffered. in 2013, he issued a judgment which gave me roughly 2% of my estimated losses. those losses, by the way, were calculated by professionals not by me, and they were uncon stessed by the u.n. o in the face of absolutely no controverting evidence, the judge decided that this was only 2% of what i had estimated. he essentially knocked out anything that th had to do with my losses in terms of finances and to award a small amount for what they call injury which is sort of a catch-all phase for metropolitanal dispress, damage to reputation and defamation and
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so on. it is well to recall that during this period the u.n. was continuing to defame me. they had violated their own rules and procedures on not speaking publicly about ongoing investigations. they did so. in the end, i got this very, very small award. and the point in all of this to me, and i want to be very clear about that, was never about compensation. in was always about truth and justice, and i know that may corny, che or somehow but that was what it was for me. i was violated, my career was irepprably damaged. my name was blasted out in dozens of countries as a corrupt u.n. official caught while attempting to flee for a couple years, and the u.n. supported that quietly or maybe not so quietly.
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and to have that very small award was a terrible message to send to other whistle blowers that might want to come forward, and that is what it became for me. why would anyone come forward to suffer what i had suffered if, in the end, you don't get truth and you don't get justice? so we decided to appeal this judgment and to ask for intervention by by the government, u.s. government, to put pressure on the u.n. and earlier this year, in january, with the support of congress, the 2014 consolidation of appropriations bill, signed by the president, and in that 7048-a-1b, ction, that i do know, ed, which refers specifically to transparancy and ccountability in unagencies.
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-- u.n. agencies. there is some debate. i don't know what the debate would be, but maybe one could argue it. we put in five provisions. five very aappointed enumerated best practices. i refer to only a few here. please feel free to look it up, should you be interested. -- is that u.n. must have u.n. staff, whistle blowers, ust have access to independent adjudication, external, some sort of body that isn't controlled by the secretary general. secondly, that whistle blowers should -- whistle blowers who are victims of prudent
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retaliation should have consequences completely mitigated for direct or indirect or future consequences of their whistle blowing. in other words, you shouldn't suffer consequences for whistle blowing and being victims of pursuedent retaliation, either direct, indirect or those that may arise in the future. of thon retaliation and who were named in the various reports went on to have great lives with no impact on them, and i was the only one who suffered any consequences. three of the areas that are highlighted in this section of u.s. law. view, what is wrong with the u.n. system, having been one of them for 28 years

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