Skip to main content

tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  April 9, 2015 3:00am-5:01am EDT

3:00 am
behind every great man there is a great woman. it was 1957, dad's first week as a freshman at ohio state university, on the steps in front of the hall he was touched by an angel, and his life will be forever blessed. he met my mom. she has been, and continues to be, the guiding light to her husband for the past 55 years. she is truly the wind beneath his wings. we would not a here today -- we would not be here today honoring this great and american had it not been for barbara nicklaus. [applause] giving back is at the core of mom and dad. it is a little repetitive following the speakers before,
3:01 am
but i want to mention the necklace -- nicklaus children's health care foundation. it is a foundation that provides health care to children that otherwise could not afford health care. just recently, a hospital in miami, and some outpatient centers, eight of them, are bearing my family's name. that is truly a legacy built in love. a shared philosophy of both mom and dad, and i quote my mom, if we can impact one child's life we have been successful. as a father, he is the best. dad worked in a different city and/or country every week. travel was a very necessary part of his life, yet dad mentioned -- managed to be at my brother's football games, my sister's volleyball games, and my youngest brother's basketball games.
3:02 am
they were fully committed. mom was usually working the clocks and the scoreboards. dad would be wearing a headset and helping to call the plays. dad made family his priority. a quality he learned from his parents. it is a quality they have passed on to us. it continues today. be there, be involved. it continues today. mom and dad have 22 grandchildren. they do not miss a thing, be it a sporting event, grandparents day, teaching the young ones how to properly cast a fly rod, punt a football, swing a golf club, birthdays, confirmations, on in and on. -- on and on. they do not miss a thing. a question i have been asked
3:03 am
throughout my life, what is it like to be jack nicklaus's son. my quick response has always been, he is just my dad. i have never really understood my response until now. to share some of my clarity with you, let us go back to a time in sports history that many of us remember. the 1986 masters. we have heard about it earlier but i will tell about it from a different perspective. it was a beautiful spring day in augusta, georgia. masters sunday. i was a 24 year old kid carrying the bag for dad. we were on the ninth green and dad had just backed away for the second time from a slippery downhill birdie putt. there had been back-to-back rows from the eighth grain where tom and another had each made eagles to extend their lead.
3:04 am
i stood with a gallery of the -- a gallery on the ninth green. there was tension in the air. we are caught up in the moment of nervous energy of golf history. it was a moment that seems to swallow us, all of us except dad. unexpectedly, dad turned to the surrounded gallery, flashed a boyish grin and says in his high-pitched voice with a certain level of levity, and -- hey, let's see if we can make some noise of our own out here. he then studied his hand, walked to the whole, the crowd erupted. the game was on. it was those final nine holes forever etched in my memory. i remember that fluid yet powerful swing. i remember the precision. the concentration and intensity. i remember each heroic pot, each heroic shot.
3:05 am
above all, i remember the emotion. dad clearly had a mission to give everything he had left to manage the only thing that he could truly manage, himself. yet, i watched him struggle. i can still see the tears in his eyes and feel those in mind. -- and feel those in mine. it was the encouragement and the elevation from the fans that was unforgettable. sure, the enthusiasm was fueled by the events of that day. but i knew it was more than that. the cheers represented in a -- an appreciation for a lifetime of accomplishment and the way he had done it. they embraced a good man with
3:06 am
good character. dad was on the 18th green. i stood motionless, holding the flag as dad putted out for a final round of 65 to complete his unlikely come from behind victory at the age of 46. as his final putt drops, the crowd e rupp's. dad picked the ball from the cup and faced the crowd to greet their chairs. -- there cheers. there i was, completing the mundane task of placing the flag back into the cup. for me, time was standing still as the cheers continued. i was thinking, wow, dad really played right today. yet, it was more than that. so much more. this man, this wonderful man had accomplished so much. he is jack nicklaus. he is arguably the greatest golfer in the history of golf. the golden bear had just won his sixth green jacket in incredible fashion. his fans adored him. it was his moment in time. a moment so learned, and a moment so deserved.
3:07 am
now, let's go back to that question that i am so often asked, what is it like to be jack nicklaus son? so, there i was, turning from the flag. and all i saw was my dad. in the midst of this moment, i was all about jack nicklaus. there dad stood, waiting for me with the most wonderful smile. his arms were outstretched to embrace me. [chuckle] dad had made me part of it. i knew i had dad's full focus. i felt like i mattered. i felt loved. that is what it is like to be his son. [applause]
3:08 am
as we walked arm in arm from the 18th green that sunday afternoon, i was so proud of my dad. today, i have that same feeling of pride. i am truly honored and privileged to see them before -- to stand before you in the nation's capital, representing our family, as we all present the congressional gold medal to dad. thank you for allowing me to share some of my memories and stories about my father, and dad, mostly, i would like to thank you for being such an amazing role model to all of us. may we all stand to recognize and honor my dad, jack nicklaus. [applause]
3:09 am
>> ladies and gentlemen, the ohio state university marching hand. -- marching band. ♪
3:10 am
[applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the democratic leader of the united states house of representatives, the honorable nancy pelosi. [applause]
3:11 am
>> thank you for bringing us all together today, it is an honor to be here with leader mcconnell and leader reid, senator portman, and senator barry. thank you all for making this possible through the legislation awarding the congressional gold medal to jack nicklaus. what a thrill for all of us to be here. when i first had the privilege and the excitement and the joy of meeting jack nicklaus was when we had the gold medal ceremony for arnold palmer. that was pretty thrilling for all of us. jack spoke that day. when i met barbara and jack, i had the privilege of having a conversation with them and people came up to me afterwards and asked me what is my impression of jack nicklaus? i said, in a word, saintly. saintly.
3:12 am
and of course, meeting barbara i knew why. hearing jack nicklaus the second's comments today reinforced that impression of this great man. as jack ii said, we're arguably in the company of the best golfer of all time. certainly, the most celebrated. his focus and love of his sport and his swing, through all of these jack nicklaus never ceased to awe his audiences, whether as an amateur or a pro. the golden bears unparalleled 18 major championships, those victories are a benchmark that all others are measured by and seek to achieve. jack nicklaus is quite possibly one of the greatest individual athletes ever. that is an applause line. [applause]
3:13 am
here we are in the rotunda of the capital to celebrate much more than his golf greatness. we are here to honor his goodness, as well. jack nicklaus is a champion simply not because of his excellence on the golf course, but because of his excellence through the game itself. time and again, jack nicklaus has sought to grant the gifts he has found through the game, to others, so that they may experience the focus and fulfillment that golf afforded him. he has been generous with his vision and today american veterans can find relaxation on a course jack nicklaus designed especially for them. thank you jack nicklaus, for your courtesy to our men and women in uniform. [applause]
3:14 am
he has been generous with his values, and today, the first team youth development program has brought the character building lessons in golf to over 9 million participants since 1997. of course, he has been generous with his philanthropy as well. this is embodied by the fabulous work of the the nicklaus children's health care foundation and other causes strengthened by his aunt -- his and barbara's support. a few years before ending his 44 year pro career, nicklaus came to the capital to testify before the education and workforce committee. there he shared the cherished lesson his instructor taught him at an early age. he said to the committee, it was not what you achieved in sports that mattered so much as what you achieved in sportsmanship.
3:15 am
few sportsmen have been so dedicated to those beyond the reach of their game as the golden bear. in the afterword to his autobiography, jack nicklaus wrote, it is not those inside the ropes who control golf's future, it is those many thousands, millions indeed outside the ropes, who are the future of the game. today we celebrate a champion who has excelled on the green and embraced leadership far beyond the links and outside the ropes. we herald a long and storied career of courage, discipline, generosity, success. we honor a man whose love of the game is exceeded only by his love for his beautiful family. his wife barbara, his five children, his 22 grandchildren. we thank his family for sharing him with america. thank you to the nicklaus family.
3:16 am
[applause] if you ask anyone, as i did in preparation for today, to tell you one thing about jack nicklaus, they only say the same thing. that man loves his family. for his achievements, for his philanthropy, for his contribution to some aspects of our family, for being in every way one of the greatest sportsmen in history is a privilege indeed. it is thrilling, thrilling, to join in honoring jack nicklaus with the congressional gold medal. thank you. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the democratic leader of the united states senate, the honorable harry reid. [applause]
3:17 am
sen. reid: jack, i am sure you would appreciate this, i have to stand up for somebody who is not here. saint nicholas has already been given a name. nancy is trying to give you that name, but saint nicholas has already been taken. a wise man once said, a perfectly straight shot with a big club is a fluke. the wise man that said that was jack nicklaus. jack nicklaus's entire life has been just that. his shots off the tee have stayed straight and true. each drive was no fluke. jack nicklaus status as an american icon is because of his athleticism, his hard work, and his dedication. what an amazing athletic career, even from the days of his youth. in high school, he not only excelled in golf, he was also a
3:18 am
talented basketball and foot all player. he was all-state in basketball and was recruited to play college basketball for all ohio state university. on the football field he was a quarterback. in those days you played both ways. he was quarterback, linebacker he could kick a field goal 50 yards. on the golf course, we all know what he has done. 63 career victories. we have heard about the 18 major championships. for me, it is a great thrill to be here today. i can hardly wait to get home and call each of my boys separately and say i had the pleasure today to sit between two of the greatest americans ever. arnold palmer and jack nicklaus. i will do that today. without a doubt, though, jack nicklaus's greatest success is not a banquet or a parade.
3:19 am
his greatest feat came when he married barbara. i came here today to personally boast a little bit to him. he has five children. i was going to outdo him with grandchildren. i only have 19. he has 22. when thinking of jack and barbara, i think i am going to recall a poem by mark twain. the poem is called "the marriage." a marriage makes of two fractional life's a whole. it doubles the strength of each. it gives to two questioning natures, a reason for living and something to live for. it will give new gladness to the sunshine, new fragrance to the flowers, and a new beauty to the earth. together, barbara and jack have certainly brought a new beauty to the earth and i am not just referring to the five children and 22 grandchildren.
3:20 am
it is exemplary what they have done with children's health. the nicklaus children's health center they established, since its inception, has helped provide children and families with much needed medical care. one example, the young lady who stood today. 10 years later, jack and barbara show no signs of slowing. last month, a huge pledge of $60 million went to the miami children's health system. while golf has made jack nicklaus famous, his and barbara's work to save the most vulnerable among us has made them immortal. jack and barbara, you have done so very, very much to make the world a better place. thank you. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the majority leader of the united states senate, the honorable mitch mcconnell.
3:21 am
[applause] sen. mcconnell: jack nicklaus has seen a lot of success on the golf course, in business, and on the charitable front. with his warm smile and grace, the golden bear makes it look absolutely effortless. but jack nicklaus has worked hard to scale every demanding peak. his story is one that deserves to be told, and today, we are. jack had a brush with polio as a teenager. he calls it just a memory now. but aching joints continued to haunt him. as a fellow survivor of this terrible disease i know how
3:22 am
difficult the road to recovery can be. so you might not have expected this young ohio native to become a golf legend. for a while, i do not think he would have, either. he originally planned to follow his dad into the pharmacy business. that is what he studied at the -- yes i know -- the ohio state university. jack has a lot of fond memories from back then. like the time he ate a goldfish. and while jack eventually found his true calling on the links, he still loves the buckeyes and the feeling appears to be mutual. there is a jack nicklaus museum on campus, after all, and he was once granted the rare honor of dotting the i in the osu marching band's script ohio formation. the same marching band here with
3:23 am
us today, in fact. although others may not always get it, i know how much this means to a buckeye like jack. perhaps almost as much as winning the presidential medal of freedom. it is a rare honor. jack nicklaus was proud to receive it way back in 2005. that was especially true after he gave president bush the following golf advice: quit. [laughter] luckily, jack got the award anyway. lucky for us, knowing never to ask him for golf tips, we just might get the truth. here is one of the most remarkable things about him. he is already a legend, but he has not stopped. he cares about helping children
3:24 am
and honoring veterans. he is putting his talent and celebrity do good work to help them. we hope he will continue to do so. for these reasons and others congress honors jack nicklaus today, a legend, a buckeye, a gentleman, and above all, an accomplished american who has never stopped reaching for the sky. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the speaker of the united states house of representatives, the honorable john boehner. [applause] speaker boehner: jackie was worried about having a boehner moment to -- up here.
3:25 am
could i tell you stories. in a few moments, we will have the presentation of the gold medal. first, i want to thank all of you for being here. with jack, there are so many stories to tell but everybody wants to go back to the 1986 masters. you heard about it today. people ask you, where were you when it happened? that is how big of a deal it was. i remember the chair i was sitting in, in west chester, ohio, watching the masters. even his son brags about being in the gallery that day. few transcend their sport to achieve the kind of moment, or this kind of honor. with arnold, it was how he brought an audience to the game. with jack, it is how he gave the game a gold standard, a ladder to climb. that is true on in and off the course.
3:26 am
jack was so good that he was the best in both victory and defeat. we have heard a lot about victory today. the toughest thing to learn in golf is not the swing in the short game, it is losing. no matter what, you have to shake the other man's hand at the end of the match and you have to mean it, too. then, you have to go face the man in the mirror. when jack came up short against arnie in 1960 at cherry hills in denver, ben hogan says, i played with a kid today who could have one in 10 shots had he known how. so, jack worked harder and he learned how. when he fell short, he had class.
3:27 am
ask tom watson his favorite story about the dual of turnberry in 1977. he will tell you jack congratulated him, saying, i gave it my best shot but it was not good enough for today. the same goes for the 1982 open at pebble beach when jack said to watson, you did it again to me, you little s.o.b. it is not the trophy or the triumph. it is the respect that jack's rivals remember the most. that is what the 1986 masters was about. to win that day, he had to overcome tom watson, greg norman, and according to some, father time. not a slouch on that list. that day, we were a part of something special. something bigger, just as we now
3:28 am
are today. because, in golf, as in all other things, it is not whether you win or lose, it is how you play the game. and no one has played it better, for longer, then jack. so, in the immortal words of an immortal golf announcer, vern lundquist, yes, sir, the congressional gold medal goes to the gentleman from ohio, the golden bear, jack nicklaus. [applause]
3:29 am
>> ladies and gentlemen, mr. jack nicklaus. [applause]
3:30 am
jack nicklaus: that is a while. mr. speaker, my ohio friends senators mcconnell, senator reid, senator pelosi >> other distinguished members tom mullins. your words have always inspired and comforted her family. jim nance, great friend for many years, i have enjoyed working with you, you are the best. the marching band, larger the last semisolid. thank you all for being here. so many family and friends that
3:31 am
took the time to be here today i am humbled. a special thanks to my son jack i don't know if i'll get through this but i don't have the words to say thank you. it was fantastic. two and a half years ago i had the privilege to be here to say words about my good friend arnold palmer what a privilege it was to be here that day. ap you have been a great friend. we will continue to be so, i know. my friend jackie, with about six years old somebody asked him what is your dad do?
3:32 am
he said, nothing. he just plays golf. [applause] and i did just play golf. i played the greatest game of all and somehow over the course of playing i ended up today. my parents families came over from europe, they were hard-working families and living examples of the american dream. my mother's father worked on the railroad, he was a conductor. my father's father worked on bc and no railroad and he was a boilermaker. one day my grandfather took my dad and his two brothers down to where he was working in well over a hundred degrees. he said boys, i never want to see this because i don't want you have to do this. i want you to make a better life. my uncle became a dentist, my
3:33 am
father and his other brother became pharmacist. this is the entrepreneurial spirit that makes america great. [applause] jack: my father owns several drugstores in and around columbus. we actually lived on a campus safe to say i was destined to be a buckeye. when i was six, my father injured his ankle playing volleyball. i will never forget the image of the folks carrying my large father into the house and his first diagnosis was a sprain. four years later they determined he broke it in several places and had to have it fused.
3:34 am
after three surgeries they encourage my father to pick up something he could walk in. he picked up golf. i was 10 years old. he took me a long, every few holes he would stop and i would hit shots. that was when i was introduced to my lifelong teacher and mentor jack grout. what a great man. my father and mother sacrificed so much for me. the opportunity for me to pursue my career. my sister is here today. as my only sibling, i think she got the short end of the stick. she has been as supportive as any family member or friend could be. i love her. i think her again. -- thank her again. [applause]
3:35 am
using golf as a vehicle, my father taught me so many valuable lessons among them, sportsmanship, honesty, and integrity. through golf i learned how to handle success and adversity. my dads of the most important thing in sports was to be gracious in victory into some sincere -- and sincere in defeat. you shake that person's hand and you mean it. i was taught to treat others as i would want them to treat me. it is simplistic. the late dean smith who i knew and my son knew. he summed up character by saying, you should never be proud of doing the right thing you should just do the right thing. i am honestly and completely humbled to be here today.
3:36 am
i am floored to be standing here. when you look at the past recipients of the congressional gold medal they read like chapters read history book. george washington, ulysses s grant, the wright brothers, third winston churchill, walt disney and more in 1973 the first of not seven athletes were honored. roberto clemente, joe lewis, and i think his son is here somewhere. [applause] jack: jesse owens, jackie robinson, sports icons i had the privilege to meet. a were men who transcend their sports bike crossing racial and cultural barriers. they fought for racial
3:37 am
discrimination and sacrificed much including their own lives in the case of roberto clemente he was honored a year after he died in a plane crash en route to deliver aid to victims in nicaragua. byron nelson, and arnold palmer, and now me. [applause] jacquelinek: i think that speaks volumes about the game we are so proud to play. i hope you agree we just play golf, and we enjoy it. love it. being here in washington, standing in the rotunda of the u.s. capital watching the presentation of colors and hearing the anthem, you cannot help but swell with pride. you cannot help but think our
3:38 am
military men and women. i was married and's would-be first of my five children when i was blessed with the draft. i think our military men and women who have allowed me to appreciate their sacrifice. as a friend likes to remind me, they are the 1% who defend the freedom of the other 99%. there is nothing free about freedom. no matter how divided our country seems at times, one thing has not weekend our countries respect and admiration for military. golf has been a wonderful outlet for men and women. many men and women who returned from combat are disabled.
3:39 am
i have heard countless stories about how golf has helped these veterans transition back into the mainstream. now the healing powers of golf have it in them purpose. i have seen veterans on the verge of taking their lives, yet golf has saved them. i have inspired -- been inspired by veterans who have a piece of mind through our game. as the vietnam vet and double amputee jim martinson once told me if you can't stand up, at least stand out. these veterans play for real. i just play golf. when i first became -- began playing the game professionally i had a strong desire to play internationally. i wanted to learn about the rest of the world. at the same time i wanted the rest of the world to learn about this great game. i played the game whenever i
3:40 am
could, i tried to design courses where the game to be played. we are trying -- we have introduced the game to 39 companies that countries. i've had the opportunity to meet leaders of other countries as well as our own. i have been fortunate to meet seven u.s. presidents and play golf with three. i will never forget the day president ford called me and asked me if i would play golf with president clinton and him to help discuss the president's position on nafta. really? i just play golf, remember? throughout my career, i was lucky enough to make a few more birdies than the next guy. because of that, and for other reasons, i have an audience, and people occasionally listen to me. that humbles me beyond words. it provides me a window to how amazing our game is across -- our game is at crossing
3:41 am
borders, connecting cultures and , bridging generations. five years ago this month, i traveled to morocco, to see how we could use the game to enhance tourism there. i was to meet the crown prince and little did i know that rather than a meeting, his highness had plans to play golf. i was dressed in khakis, boat shoes, and playing with borrowed clubs. we played nine holes at a course, and there was not a soul on the course. it was immaculately maintained. we had a wonderful round and later that night, we gathered at the palace. when i found out between the ground and dinner truly moved me. the crown prince's father was a golfer. he loved the game. the king had died 11 years earlier.
3:42 am
it was a favorite of father and son. no golfer had stepped foot on the course since the king's death. yet, it was maintained every day just in case. on that day, the course was finally played again because the crown prince wanted to make that connection with his father's legacy. we just play golf. but to so many, it is so much more. for millions of people, golf does so much more. many of you know this, but it bears repeating. the game of golf has given more back to charity than all other major sports combined. each year off generates almost $4 billion in charity giving. almost all of that goes outside the game to help philanthropic causes. please allow me to congratulate commissioner tim pension and other representatives of the pga tour. last year the two are generated a record $140.5 million in charitable donations, taking the total money raised in the
3:43 am
history of the tour to $2.14 billion. [applause] we just play golf. and boy, are we proud that we do. if i can get through this last part here. the last thing i have to say about golf has everything to do with why i am standing here today. on the back of the metal, there are six stars. five of them represent my children. there is one larger singular star that represents my wife barbara. i am not going to get there. but yes success is all about , timing, and perhaps never more so in the game of golf. i can say with conviction that my timing was never better on
3:44 am
that september day, and this was said before, in 1957, on the ohio state campus. i met barbara. eventually, after a couple of weeks she worked me into her , schedule and we began dating. [laughter] i have dodged for years the question about what victory is most important, or most memorable. yet, i don't know if i have ever had a more important victory or more memorable one then when barbara became my wife on july 3, 1960. [applause] were it not for barbara, i would've been just another golfer. people have asked me to quantify her importance in my career. i would have to say she is responsible for at least 15
3:45 am
majors championships. i will give myself credit for i three. am proud of what i have accomplished in my career and my life. the good thing about being 75 is anything i am not proud of was before the internet was invented. i don't think this metal would hang around my neck, if it were not the importance of barbara. not long after we married, and incident happened with our daughter. we decided at a young age if we were ever going to give back, it would be for children. that became our priority. barbara has been a guiding light of everything we have accomplished. it is her vision, her dream, and her reality, that the nicklaus children's health care foundation has touched the lives of children all over the country. there is a reason why five days
3:46 am
ago it was mentioned that we unveiled a hospital in miami. barbara says the children are the root of the heart. she is truly the heart of everything we have done on the charitable side. [applause] but barbara's importance in my life far transcends my golf career and charitable work. she has been an incredible wife, mother, and now grandmother of 22, all of whom are here today with her parents. she has made many personal sacrifices to allow me to accomplish what i needed to do in my career. with barbara by my side, i have made golf a second priority to family. all i ever wanted was for myself -- my five children to grow up to be good citizens and be able to say they knew their dad. today, they are great citizens and great parents. i hope it is safe to say that they do know their dad.
3:47 am
for the 22 grandkids, none of whom ever saw me swing a club in a victory, pepaw will do just fine. yes, jackie, i just play golf. but my whole life work was to make you all proud of me. hopefully, i have. thank you. [applause] ♪ [marching band playing]
3:48 am
3:49 am
♪ [applause]
3:50 am
announcer: ladies and gentlemen, please stand as the chaplain of the u.s. senate, dr. barry black, gives the benediction. dr. black: let us pray. now unto him who is able to keep us without stumbling or slipping, and to present us without fault or blemish, before the presence of his glory, with unspeakable ecstatic delight, in triumphant joy and exultation. to the only wise god, the shepherd of our destiny, the glory, majesty, and might, dominion and power, and lord, in all of their tomorrow's, bless
3:51 am
and keep jack and barbara nicklaus and their loved ones. make your face shine upon them and be gracious to them. lift the light of your countenance upon them, and give them your piece -- your peace. we pray in your great name amen. announcer please be seated. : ladies and gentlemen, remain in your seats until your row is invited to depart by a representative.
3:52 am
♪ [marching band playing]
3:53 am
>> up next on c-span, remarks at from david nelms. a conversation on the air on nuclear framework agreement. on this morning's "washington journal," we will talk to tucker carlson a. >> of the national press club that will hold a discussion looking at the policy implications regarding hillary clinton's use of personal e-mail while serving as secretary of state. ill have live coverage here at 10:00 eastern here on c-span. on c-span2 rand paul will give a foreign-policy speech. watch live coverage from mount pleasant, south carolina at noon eastern. >> each night this week at 9:00
3:54 am
p.m. eastern, conversations with a few new members of congress. >> as a result i try to stay disciplined in my message. in a football since i stay within the hashmarks. i understand i represent everyone in montana. i represents not only the republican side, but i represent the democrat side, and the independent side the union side, i represent everyone in montana. i think if we take that value set forward, congress represent america. we truly articulate the values of the district. the purpose is to make america better. >> five newest members of congress talk about their careers and personal lives and share insight on how things work on capitol hill. join us for all of their conversations each night at 9:00 eastern on c-span.
3:55 am
>> of this sunday on "q and a" andrew ferguson on his writing career, the gop presidential candidates for 2016, and what voters are looking for in a candidate. >> they want someone who looks like he has stood up for them i'm amazed to the degree at which primary voters on both sides are motivated by resentment. the sense of being put upon. those people do not understand us. here is a guy who is going to stick it to them. that happens with both sides. i don't think that was actually true 30 years ago. resentment has always been part of politics obviously, but the degree to which it is almost exclusively be motivating factor
3:56 am
in truly committed republican veteran publicans and democrats. >> sunday night on c-span's "q and a pure quote." >> next the head of financial services talks about changes caused by technology regulation. he spoke of the executives club of chicago in february and took questions. [applause] >> think you john for that. i am delighted to be here with you guys. we are going to discuss and we will hear from david about the digit digitize nation and how it will impact financial services as well as partners, services, etc.. i am honored to introduce david all of you know him already. let me give you the background.
3:57 am
as you know he is the chairman and ceo of discover financial services. that means he is responsible for the company's credit cards student loans, personal loans money market accounts, and checking account services, in addition he oversees the discover network, the competence of payment network pulse diners club international, and serves as chairman of discover bank, the issuing bank for the discover card branch. before his appointment at discover in 1998, david served as vice chairman of nba america bank. he previously helped at progressive insurance, ge, and bain and company consulting. he has a bachelors degree in mechanical engineering from the university of florida. he has a mba from harvard.
3:58 am
in addition to those responsibilities, he is a board number of cbw, i director and task chairman of the executives club of chicago and the federal reserve bank of chicago's federal advisory council to the board of governors. he was also chairman of the board at junior achievement of chicago. he is a board member of the round table, and a civic committee of commercial club of chicago. from 2008 2 2014 he was a member of the international board of juvenile diabetes research foundation. he can be chairman of all of those things, and he is a very decent guy. please join me in giving him a word -- warm welcome. [applause]
3:59 am
david: with that introduction that we are out of time. it is an honor to be here. i have been active in the executives club for many years. i do know very well be vital roles this organization plays the civic life of our city. how fortunate we all are to call chicago our home. from fortune 500 companies to vibrant startup companies from world-class -- to our position as a key transportation hub, chicago has it all. proud to be a hometown company. we were created in 1986 when we relaunched with a super bowl ad. that was a year the chicago bears won the game. we have always been based in the chicago area. we became a standalone chicago in 2007, one of the 32 fortune 500 companies headquartered in the area. whatever your industry, and i
4:00 am
know there are a lot of different industries represented here today, you are likely facing a time of extraordinary change and destruction. the health care business is transforming and so is the energy business. the consumer product sector is transforming and so is telecom. financial services is transforming in big and meaningful ways. i have been in financial services for many years and i can tell you there has never been a time when the pace was quicker, the challenge is more diverse, or the opportunities greater. this transformation is the result of technology and the way technology is changing our culture, how it is transforming the habits of consumers. it is not hyper bowl to say financial services over the last century have changed the way things are exchanged.
4:01 am
i doubt anyone here will be surprised to learn transactions have over kate -- card transactions have overtaken cash in the night states. what may be surprising to you is by next year, u.s. card transactions are expected to be more than double combined total cash and check transactions. the majority of transactions are still done via cash but card users are expected to overtake cash by 2017. the second trend we see is that banking is here and it is the future. the trend in retail banking is a direct channel such as online, mobile, and mail. according to the american bankers association, channels are preferred by 54% of customers, as opposed to 21% and 14% p.m. many people use multiple channels. branches are not going away
4:02 am
anytime soon. there is a huge transformation in that percentage of people who say they prefer digital and that is what they used more and more on a daily basis. the trend will only accelerate based on demographics. younger consumers less hung up down the street. many already do all their banking through online, mobile and phone. the most significant trend is a related topic, mobile. everything is moving to the phone. the phone is becoming a real-time access device not just for real-time services, but virtually every other part of life as well. the number -- a number of mobile app users has doubled in two years and half of those are mobile only users. the smartphone is the hub for shopping, social media, travel finance, e-mail, and texting.
4:03 am
some people use them for phone calls. with opentable, you could find a restaurant, make a reservation, monitor your tab throughout the meal, all without ever taking a wallet out of your pocket. you can still use your discover card. no reason to hand a card to someone. that is one you expect more and more of in the years ahead. i am constantly amazed at the innovative new app being developed. at that automatically sends money to charity for the automatic snooze button. that'll make you either very prompt or very generous. either way, you are a winner. financial services apps are the fastest-growing apps come up over 50% from last year. it is all built around the
4:04 am
smartphone pure real-time, customizable and upgradable devices open up a world of possibilities. phones will be the access device, versus cards and physical laws could we're fast approaching a world where commerce will seamlessly blend as shopping takes hold. payment providers are working on solutions in store, online, and mobile, including ways to easily integrate rewards and loyalty programs. one example is the way to discover on amazon, partner to integrate bonus rewards into the amazon checkout experience. it is unbelievably simple pair when i discover card shops at amazon.com, their automatic the offered the chance to pay
4:05 am
during the checkout process. it could not be easier. i recently purchased a full-size refrigerator from amazon and four by -- with my discover cash bonus, delivered to my home without leaving my home and getting my car out of my wallet. riley, it -- there is an explosion in the amount of data available. it barely existed a few years ago, but it is used today and moving it to the cloud. information is more valuable and enabling than anyone could have imagined just a decade ago. industry players are working to learn more about consumer behavior and develop more value added services. tickle for businesses like discover is simple. how do we use the data to the right information for the right customer in the right place and at the right time question mark -- right time?
4:06 am
all of this can feel like a headwind or a tail wind. destruction is something those of us at discover relish. we were born out of the banking issue -- industry, from the merchant side. we built our own broad merchant network from scratch, the only successful one to be built in the last 40 years. we invented a card with cash rewards and no annual fee. the first major credit card company to offer customer service. providing that type of value and innovative service was unique in the industry and left many competitors following suit. it is my job to make sure the innovative spirit that this -- that has served discover so well throughout history continues to drive us into the future. the range of initiatives our team is working on is too long to detail, but let me share our worldview p or we do not think of ourselves as a customer
4:07 am
experience company. for many companies, a custom -- a transaction is just a transaction or for a consumer, it is a broader experience that could serve months and years. they could return it or not make the final payment for several years. the broader customer experience encompasses many potential touch points and many potential experiences to add value including the discovery process. mobile devices pinpoint accurate to your location and preferences. easy and flexible financing. a wide variety of payment options at the point of sale or online. rewards and redemption offers, real-time spending and account information, and financial tools to matter -- manage your money. consumers consciously or subconsciously ask themselves fundamental questions. can i afford this?
4:08 am
am i paying too much for it? will the financial exchange be secure? what if i have a problem after i buy it? helping customers with questions like these is a big part of our value system at discover print i am proud to say we are quite good at it. our leadership in this area was confirmed last year, the highest-ranking in the 2014 card satisfaction study. how do we do it, process the task of creating a richer customer experience? i believe it could be summarized along three lines. tech, touch, and trust. tech is about staying ahead of technology curve. it is challenging but essential. the key is to focus on the simplicity of interaction, ease-of-use, intuitive designs.
4:09 am
we focus on all of those things as we develop our award-winning website apps at discover paired we became the first card issuer to support ios eight, the first with fingerprint login, passcode login, and pre-login account information. features like these are important because in addition to added value, customers want convenience and simplicity. they also want connection with us and with the future, which is why touch is important. touch is about providing help when customers needed it. about maintaining the option for a customer to tweet with a live person anytime they wanted you may have seen this is the focus of much of our advertising in recent years. these one-on-one exchanges were important which is why we do not outsource or offshore our credit card customer service. when a cardmember calls to discover, they get a well-trained and highly committed discover employee at one of our u.s. customer care centers. we take great care to make sure our support platforms, website call centers, automated phone centers, online chat, e-mail
4:10 am
and mobile support work together. touch is also about adding value in ways the customer is not expecting. we lead the interest to in 2014 by providing credit scores to all discover card members on their statements. you may have seen our recent super bowl ad, which featured scores as we continued to show how discovered treats you like you treat you. in two thousand 14, we enhanced what many already regarded as the best cash rewards program in the industry by making it possible to redeem your rewards in any amount, and by guaranteeing those rewards never expire. our talked about tech and touch brings us to trust. there have been dozens of high profile data breaches in the united states in recent years, and hundreds more that up and got less attention. many people have been affected. a global survey showed 27 percent of cardholders have
4:11 am
experienced fraud in the last five years. one of our most important tasks right now in the financial services industry is to address challenges of data security and fraud prevention so our customers can continue to use electronics payments. credit card transactions still have many advantages over other forms of payment. credit card customers can review charges on their statements before paying and are not liable for fraud. we need to do more as an industry to protect customers. we are. this year, the u.s. market place is transitioning to emb chip cards. it is a big change. banks like discover will be issuing 575 million new cards. merchants will purchase and install 12 million new terminal spear not all merchants who make the transition this year, but many will come including all of the larger merchants. that means it is a big change
4:12 am
not just for banks and merchants, but also for the millions of customers who will receive new cars and shop at those merchants. the good news is and be cards will provide a number of security benefits. it will be very difficult to produce counterfeit chip cards. if we eventually transition to chip transactions in set of chips and signature, it will be difficult for crooks to use stolen credit cards. that said, i should note there is no silver bullet. one thing, fixed, the fraud tends to shift. the fraud will likely shift to online actions. -- transactions. standards to enhance authentication and make online and present transactions more secure as well. i would overall say our industry is mobilized and make security very seriously,
4:13 am
difficult to mobilize an entire ecosystem given all the players involved. we're definitely taking progress. let me spend a moment talking about financial services issue we are concerned with here at discover. it is the issue of student debt in this country. student loan debt, one $20 significant larger than the entire credit card or auto loan industries. more than $100 billion in new student loans originated every year. 94% of student loans are federal. 6% are private student loans. that is an important distinction so let me explain. discover is one of a handful of things to provide private student loans. we work for students, parents, and 24 nonprofit, to help fill a gap in the college education at. grants, and scholarships. we use the same underwriting process we do for other types of lending.
4:14 am
we do not see other types of excesses or delinquencies in the federal student loans system. think about the problems we had a few years -- a few years ago when a mortgage lending led to a crash in the housing market federal student lending does not just have glass underwriting. it has no underwriting. i do not believe anybody is well served by government loans who settle students with too much debt, or even worse, with debt and no degree. the end result represents a huge potential burden and they will impact significantly the financial services industry is well. even more concerning is the impact of the massive student loan debt on individual consumers. the successful student loan debt, recent data shows 30 euros college graduates with student that are now less likely to own a home than
4:15 am
non-cartilage graduates. the most important -- noncollege graduates. the most important is consideration of income requirements for tax loans. federal disclosure should also be strengthened to be consistent with private student loan requirements. colleges also have this responsibility. financial aid officers should be possible for better revising and educating students. colleges need to seek more non-loan funded options for more -- for certain students and should have some skin in the game for loans made to students who do not achieve a degree. recent income base repayment plans are helping some borrowers but treat the symptoms and not the original problem of over borrowing at the taxpayers expense. discover is doing a lot to help students and parents navigate
4:16 am
the world of college financing and college education. if you go to student loans.com our website, you will find much more information. the other thing i would like to say about young people is the key to a brighter future is knowledge. we made financial education and financial literacy a part of our education. we are delighted to participate in junior achievement especially as chicago is celebrating the 75th anniversary teaching 500,000 students in chicago financial literacy this year. additionally, well into our pathway to financial success program to bring financial education to our nation's high school. school districts covering all 50 states, including a one million dollar grant for chicago public schools. let me leave you with a few
4:17 am
comments about one final thing. the best way to achieve a greater experience for customers with a way to leave technology and capability is often by partnering with other companies. one of the most vertically integrated and focus companies in financial services and we are a bank and a network ranging from consumers to merchants. we partner with universities for educational expenses and help avoid over borrowing. discover has grown dramatically in the past five years by almost any measure you choose, transactions on a global network, and net income. perhaps the most dramatic demonstration for the power of partners is the way we have grown our cars.
4:18 am
six years ago, discover was primarily a domestic car from -- company. today, you can use our cards at more than 30 million merchant locations a big part of how we got there is by partnering with other industry players. clearly, partnering has worked very well for our customers business partners and shareholders as well. anything we do in the technology area involves partnering with other companies as well. it pays to discover. financial services, like most other industries, is being transformed by technology, especially smartphones, and it is going direct. the explosion of data and capabilities can be both a threat and an opportunity.
4:19 am
being nimble with technology and having a customer experience focus is critical to success. security is a growing threat not just for financial services but all of us in this interconnected world. federal student loan debt is an issue we need to deal with. economic consequences. finally, partnering well is critical to most of us serving customers well. we better moved to queue and day. i look forward to your questions. quite i have got sitting in front of me a computer you can text your questions two and the instructions should be on your table. he spoke about security partners.
4:20 am
a couple of questions combined into one. we have heard a number of security breaches. a person got your number and called the retail that they go through target, home depot whatever. how do we make the full system safe, how do we get partners to improve their security? how do we make consumers comes to rush comfortable that they will not lose financial information or worse, have their money taken? david: consumers are protected from financial consequences, but it can still be incredibly inconvenient and disturbing to have your personal information compromised.
4:21 am
one of the things that makes it so difficult is that there are so many different points of entry. i mentioned 30 million global merchant locations. everyone of them more a potential place to come in. we connect with a lot of other financial institutions. generally speaking, banks have been ahead of other interest rates -- industries. they tend to migrate more to retailers in recent years as they were easier targets. those merchants have beefed up their defenses as well. i think the key thing is to recognize that progress is being made, but we will continue to have different types of entities. it will not go away.
4:22 am
for the foreseeable future. i think the final thing i would say is from a personal perspective, you should feel confident using electronic transactions. we got a lot more transactions than cash when user while it. -- lose your wallet. it is the best way to pay. you've got to pay attention to your bill. you want to take -- pay attention particularly to a task, because one of the most common methods that you do not read amount -- read about as much, you click on the wrong button and suddenly, your computer is infected and it is sucking the information out. i think there are rules for the banks and retailers and individual consumers. we all left to be on guard -- have to be on guard.
4:23 am
>> we have all gotten the nigerian businessman thing, but they have gotten more sophisticated. the new one is in the u.k. their janet yellen and ben bernanke was a guy named mervyn king. it says, my name is mervyn king and i was the chairman of the bank of england. it talks about how big he is of the bank of england and he wants to share some of that with you. mervyn king sends you an e-mail, do not click on it. david: the obvious ones are easy but the trouble is there getting more and more sophisticated. we get attacked by our people at the federal reserve. so, we have gotten to the point where, through education of our people, we actually send fake e-mails and see her many people click on them it when 30% click
4:24 am
on them, they get reeducated. >> totally different, we have got two or three questions about digital wallet, apple pay, paypal, the evolution of alternative payment systems and what does this mean for the credit card industry consumers, and where do you see the trend is headed? david: when i mention partners these are some of the new partners that are really excited. for the consumer, there will be an explosion of ways to pay and capability and integration of payment -- both integration and simplicity. it is in the wallet. generally speaking, these new entities have other
4:25 am
capabilities loaded on top. none of these new industries want to make loans or regulated banking company, certainly. they all need payment rail. fundamentally, every transaction you make goes back to either a bank account or to a credit card account. so they have got to ride our wells to get back to those accounts. >> those are in the spirit of integration consolidating. then you have got a question here about desegregating and
4:26 am
the de-evolution of the industry to lending club or bitcoin or whatever. then taking a part little pieces of the bank, where they do get into lending or they do get into the deep plumbing of the financial system. do you think that will be enabled by the fact that maybe they have less regulation, or maybe will it be deemphasized going forward because it is a little more of a wild less environment? -- wild west environment? david: i spend 99% of the rest of my time on regulation. i stayed away from it. there is no doubt that much more extensive regulation is pushing some people out of the traditional financial system in to -- less regulated entities.
4:27 am
people who had spotty credit used to be able to get a credit card. they cannot do that anymore. paying much higher rates. the consumer protection bureau theoretically, has jurisdiction over nonbanks. it is a whole lot easier to regulate a big tank then it is 30,000 payday lenders that can open and shut on a whim. as a society, we need to be careful about overregulation we need smart regulation, more in the middle, and not go back
4:28 am
to where we were before the crisis but not be so extreme that we squeeze people completely out of the system. if people are adopting some of these new while it's and so on those are instrumental opportunities. those things i think have a lot of upside. but if they're going to other places because it is their last resort and they can no longer access the system, that the sources of traditional funding for checking accounts that used to fund everyone, now high minimums and no more free checking, that effectively pushes people out, unintended points of regulation, i think we should be concerned. >> people want to protest -- to press you on what you think of the financial protection bureau. it sounds like you have a dress issue of unintended consequences that we want to
4:29 am
think through. are there other areas of federal policy which, with the rise of technology, they have become either more or less effective, that the federal government cannot do it job or is better able to do its job because he things have changed? david: i am not sure i'm going to answer that exact question. something to think about is how much more involved the federal government is in our consumer financial system in this country than in almost any other country in the world. the fact that we owned fannie and freddie, and we basically nationalized mortgages. student loans, and mentioned 94% of that is the government balance sheet. i have not quite figured out whether china or the government owned banks is more or less controlled by the government.
4:30 am
leslie do something with freddie fannie and student loans, we are heavy on government banks as opposed to traditional private banks. i think it is not a particularly healthy place to be, but it is tough to find the will to say, what are we actually going to do with fatty -- freddie and fannie, for example? classes you look at the trans, one on everybody's mind are rising income inequality, the stagnation of incomes, what the sources are and what future is how does that divergence, if you will, between different parts of the country, how does that affect the strategy of financial services businesses?
4:31 am
is it the case high-end cars are doing better and low-end and cars are doing worse? david: i think this is one area where direct banking can help. it is traditionally very expensive to serve low balance and low usage customers. i think that is one of the best hopes for helping to keep people -- not just provide great service for high-end customers, but to provide a cost-effective and low-cost method. i think that is a promising aspect. >> this asks about different age groups.
4:32 am
as millennials come to outnumber the baby boom, do you plan to modify your approach to market share? david: we will put a particular emphasis on students and young people. there are switching costs and there is a certain momentum once someone has a bank account, especially checking. young people are more used to direct banking and direct everything in the first place. if you could get in the door
4:33 am
with their first account, i think that will be what probably all of us in financial services will be particularly focused on. then working on retaining the people we arty have. -- we already have. classic couple of business questions. how do you budget for innovation when the possibility and size of the payoff and disruption is so uncertain, how do you measure on digital transformation initiatives in this environment? david: sometimes that can be easy. there can sometimes be payoff, people are going to be not calling your call center because they are self-serving on the website. other projects do not lend themselves to that. there was one we had to take a leap of faith. we had to put in the technology. you can tell what it will cost you system my spirit you can tell what it will cost you in
4:34 am
phone calls. it will generate calls. why is it going up and down in call centers? a certain number of things i think you have to take on faith. we have a history of being first years ago, we were the first to start sending e-mail alerts or go over limits. in the industry, i will just hurt my income, why would i do this? we felt like we would get enough to offset the immediate costs. i look at big picture outcome. the average in the card industry is eight years. that is heart of why our credit is better. longtime customers perform better than shorter-term customers. it is sometimes a little bit like advertising. it is hard to measure the roi
4:35 am
of a campaign. you have to look at overall brand measures and use some adjustment. it is a very important thing to try to prioritize it is a very important thing to not just two things that have an easy either -- easy roi. >> as an executive, one person asks how have you organized your own leadership and your team around the client experience? another asks, as a ceo, what can people do to keep a culture of innovation alive in your organization? david: we are organized pretty traditionally. marketing, chief information officer, business leaders. we have tried to have excellence. our digital area, under marketing, they serve not only
4:36 am
credit cards, but the network and, you know, student loans and other businesses. the way we have tried to work it is that we are all one company and let's not get locked up on who is exactly where. i.t. is the same way. they view their clients as controlling what they do and help setting priorities. the key thing is a lot of communication. think a lot of senior-level involvement. i do not mean senior people making the decisions. typically, especially if it is those take a bet kind of things, you meet -- you need to make the call that we will part -- prioritize this project over that one. a lot of collaboration.
4:37 am
one of our core values is collaboration. it is hard to say how you get a culture, but it takes a great culture and innovative culture and that can create that innovation. quasi-concerned about the ability to stay in illinois given the state's tax structure and deficit? david: i think people are an thing it up because they are anonymous. you know, i think, you know, chicago is our home and we are not going anywhere. i think from his citizens perspective, i am concerned about the current fiscal state
4:38 am
and i am concerned about the ability to attract new businesses and retain other businesses. so, you know, if the spouse's company moves out of illinois, -- so we are all affected by what is going on. i would like statistics in our state have not been good. recovering on our debt ratings. we have got to fix it. we have been strong in the past and we need to get back to not being forced in california. >> how would you advise the governor on funding, financing and financing toward our state
4:39 am
financing education and university's committee college? -- community college? david: i certainly think that in general, there has been a big withdrawal of funding from higher education, not just in illinois, but across illinois. that is part of what led to the increase in student loans that i mentioned before peer prioritizing education, i cannot speak specifically about funding, but i would say generally, education has got to be one of the best investments we can make as a society, as a government, as well as individuals. secondly, we have got to spend that smart. i am not close enough to know what is going where. in general, my observation is
4:40 am
too much money infrastructure overhead kinds of things, we need to make sure money goes after the basics. generally speaking, investments in our education system will pay off in terms of having a capable workforce and in terms of growing our economy. >> that is a great place to as one of the professors, i agree with you 100%. david, it has been a great discussion. would you like to make any closing thoughts or points to the audience here? david: it is a very exciting time to be in a business. what is happening with technology, changes in consumers, the ability to reach
4:41 am
customers more cost-effectively and in different ways. it can be overwhelming. we used to talk about, on mail or telephone. now, the e-mails and the chats and mobile. it requires a lot more work of all of us. we all have to keep educated and keep getting better. it also opens up a world with new opportunities that simply did not exist and i think that is exciting, no matter whether you are in financial services or other kinds of industries. >> thank you. applause for david.
4:42 am
4:43 am
specifics of the agreement and the possible implications. the national council on u.s. arab relations hosted this event. >> good morning and welcome to another of the series of
4:44 am
briefings of the national council on u.s.-arab relations on issues of vital importance to the united states and the nations in the middle east. thank you for coming this morning on such short notice. we have such a distinguished group of panelists will follow these matters. this morning i am honored to be your moderator. john: i joined the national council on u.s.-arab relations after spending 35 years in the arabian gulf in the energy field. i am well aware of the importance of the iran nuclear deals for the people of the regions. i would like to thank c-span for covering this event live today and for covering our briefing last thursday on yemen, held in this room. the ambassador spoke at the conclusion of that session. coverage of last week's briefing is available on our website.
4:45 am
a quick word about the national council on u.s.-arab relations. established 33 years ago as a nonprofit organization. the guiding vision is one of education and seeks to educate about the islamic world and place relations between our allies and partners across the region on his firm a foundation as possible and continues to expand the relationship through a variety of programs. students, academics, and our armed forces. it organizes an annual -- conducts a study abroad, youth leadership development programs, such as the ones that will be held this weekend in houston and washington. over 400 young americans will represent 22 countries to
4:46 am
debate pressing issues of the day with over 38,000 alumni. the next generation of americans will be better prepared to conduct economic and commercial relations in a region so vital to the united states. today our panel will assess the nuclear deal. this is a preliminary agreement, a framework with many technical issues to be sorted out in the coming months. as has been said, the devil is basically in the details. the public debate will be intense. is this a good thing or a bad thing? what do our regional partners and allies think? will this define the legacy of
4:47 am
a president in the home stretch of his administration? the president has described this as a once in a lifetime opportunity to see if we can take the nuclear issue off the table and bring regional stability to the middle east. let us see whether these noble objectives are achievable. just a few housekeeping details. each of the speakers will have 10 to 12 minutes for their remarks. i refer you to their bios in our announcement. this will allow full a full hour of questions and discussions. on your chairs, you will find a 3x5 card. please write your questions on these cards and we will do our best to respond as fully as possible.
4:48 am
to start i am pleased to introduce our first speaker, dr. john duke anthony. he is the only american observer to of attended each summit since 1981. and then the ambassador will speak. he will be followed by the executive director of the middle east policy council and a specialist on middle east affairs and will present his remarks. next we'll hear from the distinguished affairs fellow at the national councils on u.s. our relations. dr. paul sullivan will
4:49 am
conclude, professor of economics at the national defense university, will wrap up the presentation. dr. anthony, if you would kickoff our discussion on this deal. dr. anthony: thank you john. we came up with 14 factors windows through which someone could look at what occurred about the framework and the challenges it represents. the opportunities it also represents an we are going to be able to a dress around eight of these 14 factors. but we will be as candid as we can. much is unknown.
4:50 am
in my brief remarks have to do with the needs and concerns of three of irans neighbors -- oman, bahrain, saudi arabia. thomas mattair will deal with the united arab emirates and kuwait. a few statistics with regard to saudi arabia pasta concerns. saudi arabia is the epicenter of prayer and pilgrimage, faith and spiritual devotion for some 1.5 million muslims worldwide. inasmuch as iran is the leading country with a largely shia
4:51 am
orientation on the theological stage, there is inherently explicitly a degree of competition so now that we are express it as i just did. iran is being perceived beyond the nuclear agreement in terms of its leaders making reference to iran's unprecedented influence in four arab capitals. it would be of concern to those in the league of arab states. of the 1.5 million muslims in the world, 2 billion christians, one billion of them being roman catholics, some 200
4:52 am
million muslims identify with the shia sect of islam. we're talking about 12% of the muslims being shia. this is important to keep in mind when one listens to people speak about the threat that iran poses. 12% taking on 88%. something is wrong with that picture. at the governmental level, the highest organization to which muslim countries belong is the organization of the islamic conference. it has 57 members. no more than four of those 57 would be predominately shia in
4:53 am
the orientation of their government. so the numbers are heavily imbalanced not in favor of iran. this, too, needs to be kept in perspective. these three are profoundly similar in their concerns regarding iran, because they are neighbors of iran. they have similar needs and concerns and similar interests and similar foreign policy objectives. and yet there are the vertices between and amongst them. when people talk about threat analysis, it is usually where they are located. people in maine are not so concerned about jamaican and haitian boat people coming to their shores.
4:54 am
those in florida are not obsessed with the same kinds of concern that people who live in new england are concerned with. this is another way of looking at the concerns and objectives of these countries. oman is different from all of the other gcc countries. it has the best, smooth relationship with iran. this is not new. this has been the case is the beginning of the revolution in 1979 and dates from before then. there is a body of water between them. many people have the image that most of the shipping goes through iran's waters and exiting the gulf.
4:55 am
this is not the case. the vast majority of the traffic goes through oman's waters. there are three lanes. one for ships coming in to the gulf. another free ships going out of the gulf. and the zone between the two that is a safety zone. the strategic and geographic challenge is far greater on the omani side than on the irani side. you can look at the map. that little piece of oman at the top of the peninsula is separated from oman like alaska is separated from the continental united states. the strategic aspect between oman and iranian relationships. there is not going to be a
4:56 am
conflict between them started by oman. oman's citizen base is less than 2 million. the numbers should drive your perspective, your assessment of what the issues are and the implications. but there is more. iran sent close to 30,000 soldiers to oman from 1972 through 1974 to help oman put down a guerrilla rebel marxist uprising in oman. no other country did as much as iran did to help all mean regain its stability.
4:57 am
there are no territorial issues between the two, unlike issues that exist between some of iran's other neighbors and iran. with regard to bahrain's situation, it is also numerically fruitful for your analysis. if people made frequent reference to 60% of the population being shia and ruled by a sunni government, you have a situation that is even more imbalanced in the case of bahrain. you have the last remaining arab country with a sunni government ruling over a majority shia population. and despite the much renowned
4:58 am
report that came out as a result of bahrain's uprising in 2011 in which there was a statement there was no evidence of iranian involvement in those uprisings, here is where perception comes in. perception is more powerful than reality. around 3000 bahrainis have been trained in oman, coming straight from secondary school finance by the shia merchants in bahrain. they go at age 17, 16, 18. they go largely not to tehran, a seminary based shiaism and they return to bahrain. some of those are regarded by the intelligence security
4:59 am
services as forming sleeper cells. in other words, one day they may be called upon to return the favor of the education and training and leadership development that they required as a result of iran. and so when the government speaks about iranian involvement, there is this dimension that does not come out in the media but should help one frame iranian's concern -- bahrain's concerned and the representatives of the government that bahrain should revert to iranian control and influence. this is disturbing to any bar
5:00 am
rainy task with security and stability issues. saudi arabia is concern the cost of a significant shia population in the eastern province. there is far less evidence than there has been in the case of bahrain's needs and concerns. saudi arabians have become open in accusing iran of being behind the inspiration of the attacks on the towers in 1996, in which large numbers of americans were killed. this is a brief overview to begin the discussion, by showing there is no unanimity of all of iran's neighbors. it differs from one to the next.

26 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on