tv Discussion Focuses on Counterterrorism Challenges CSPAN August 30, 2016 3:56am-5:01am EDT
waiver program to europe, they are still checking out and people are investigated. they have to apply online. and especially, for people who are immigrating, people who are coming in on the student visa, or an immigration visa. the loophole that is being closed, which i think is important, has been the fiance-wife visa. i think that was the easiest to get and that is now the one they focus on, and with good reason. >> that is actually a very hard visa to get. >> it is hard to prove you are actually married. they don't investigate in the sense they investigated me. >> you are canadian. [laughter] say, "you are canadian," everyone is like "yeah." >> i think both the candidates
are naive in some respects about what kind of real problems we will be facing. syria use the example of where, has there been a worse example of our failure in terms of creating an opposition army, the free syrian army? qaeda, them are in al and the other half surrendered and gave up their weapons. we have to its knowledge a couple of things about syria. bashir al-assad is a mass murderer. he is an evil man. he is like stalin. and yet, he poses no threat to america. idea that accept the the majority of the people regime about the assad are the threat we are going to have to face.
in order to contain this, i think our main goal in that region is to try to limit the spread of refugees. if you think about the palestinian diaspora in 1948, 700 50,000 people -- that is the entire population of the original diaspora. think of the missouri they haven't doored and the terror that has -- think of the misery terrorve endured and the that has come out of that. there are more refugees in the world now since world war ii. a tremendous reservoir for the possibility of future terrorism. and we are completely not dealing with it. we have to partner with other agents in the region. i think we have to accept some sort of relationship with russia, in terms of dealing with the syrian solution, and trying
to force some kind of compromise because we have no leverage. our nominal allies in the region, we have 2 million refugees in turkey, one million in jordan, and one out of four people in lebanon. those demographics are enough to possibly capsize those governments. that is not even speaking of the flow of people into europe. this is a tremendous problem. if you are were a five-year-old child when the syrian civil war began, you may have missed your entire elementary school education already. what future is there? nobody in this campaign is addressing a realistic approach to the war in syria and the spillover affect it will have on the region, on europe, and eventually, on ourselves. >> is my mic on? well, i think lawrence is right.
i think things have not done completely realistically. this is the middle east. you but to the question about donald trump versus clinton. and you are a donald trump voter? act to my previous statement about -- don't be stupid. i would like to speak to you as a war fighter. i have risk my life in every war since 1983. what he said earlier about it getting worse? it can get much, much worse. i don't know if you know anyone that has died in these wars. i don't know if you have visited ground zero anytime recently. or the pentagon memorial.
into youro get it head, but the cost is when people say they want to go to war or be tough. if you don't understand the value of depth and saving your fellow citizens from this, trust this, i have only been doing it for 35 years. listen, it can get much worse. we were here at the seller, and coulter spoke. and i asked her a question. donald trump said he would not take the use of nuclear bombs off the table. someone recommended that they nuke the city -- a city in syria. imagine howcannot going is today, imagine to an order of magnitude worse.
everywhere,ery day, in every part of the middle east , killing every american you can find. start toying with the idea of using a nuclear weapon in the middle east. be to mention you will eating that radiation within 72 hours in your milk. the trade wind where those rate -- where that radiation goes will be to europe, and then over iran, the stands, and straight to china in the east. this is not a game. and it makes me sick when i hear people say -- he is a tough guy. tough guys serve in the military. family has 110 combined years in military service since the civil war.
i love this nation. none of you should have to worry about the stuff that i have to worry about, that he has to write about, and she has to teach and he has to get an agent for. [laughter] none of us. this election is coming down to stupid versus thoughtful. vote stupid. otherwise, you will see a level of terrorism, you have not yet. [applause] this is just my opinion, though. >> yes? we are out of time. thati do want to say is the question of the night has been --does terrorism threaten the american way of life? the debate here tells you that it has not yet because what you have here is four people who are not just reading books and not just listening to
cnn and other things. but people who are willing to find out by going around the world, learning the language is, by giving their life to studying it and informing us about it. that is one piece. but the other piece is who else does terrorism in a comedy cellar? thank you for coming. [applause] c-span,g up on counterterrorism efforts between the u.s. and the european union.
later, defense spending and budget priorities in the next congress. c-span's washington journal, live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. morning, thes research and policy director for the economic policy institute will join us to discuss his recent report as what he describes as the lowest -- slowest economic recoveries in u.s. history. and then the director for air and radiation at the epa will talk about the obamas administration's efforts to limit greenhouse emissions. c-span's washington journal, live beginning at 7:00 east turn this morning. -- 7:00 eastern this morning. today, a look at where hillary clinton and donald trump stand on education issues. live coverage from the national
press club begins at 2:00 p.m. eastern. today, arizona and florida hold primaries. john mccaintor seeks his sixth term. he is being challenged by kelly ward. there is a democratic primary to face marco rubio. follow the primary results in this and other -- in these and other races on c-span.org and c-span radio. and senate house returning from their summer break next week, on thursday at 8:00 p.m. eastern, we will preview four key issues facing congress this fall. federal funding to combat the zika virus. >> women want to make sure that they do not have the ability to get pregnant. >> today, they turned down the very money that they have argued
for last may and decided to gamble with the lives of children like this. >> the annual defense policy spending bill. >> all of these folks are very vital to the future of this nation at a time of turmoil and a time of the greatest number of refugees since the end of world war ii. gun violence legislation and criminal justice reform. >> every member of this body, every republican and democrat, once to see less gun violence. thee must continue to work work of nonviolence and demand an end to senseless killing everywhere. >> and the resolution for congress to impeach irs mission or john costigan. the commissioner of the internal revenue service for high crimes and misdemeanors.
>> we will review the congressional debate. with the senior congressional reporter for the examiner. join us thursday night. new ad by a number of key states called "-- the main message is that donald trump would bring economic recovery and prosperity to the nation. that is the main thrust. to paint hillary clinton as more of the same. narrativeeen a big that the donald trump campaign has been seeking to push for a long time. can he is a person that
bring real change to a political system that a large number of americans disapprove of. >> donald trump has said he wants to make america great again. the title of this ad is called -- two americans, a focus on the economy. very reminiscent of those and an interesting parallel. senator edwards would not be proposing the kinds of policies that donald trump is but i think this point to a wider issue which is donald trump's assertion that the political elites work in such a way as to freeze out ordinary people were to rig the system against them. that is what this slogan is about in this case more so than just simply the separation of
prosperity and poverty which was more of edwards case in 2004. it is a
new 32nd spot released by the donald trump campaign. >> in hillary clinton's campaign, taxes go up. hundreds of thousands of jobs disappear. it is more of the same but worse. in donald trump's america, working families get tax relief, billion of new jobs created, wages go up, small businesses thrive. the american job is achievable. change that makes america great again. donald trump for president. >> we are joined by the associate editor of the hill newspaper. the total spend on this ad is $10 million. it is primarily focused on battleground states but quite a number of them. this is appearing in nine
states. running through them quickly, ohio, pennsylvania, north carolina, florida, new hampshire, nobody, virginia, -- andodka, -- nevada virginia. crown --rs it like a make america
great again. but donald trump made his shirts in bangladesh. his ties in china and his suits in mexico. the real donald trump outsourced his products and jobs to 12 different countries. do not believe the hat. you cannot make america great again if you do not make things in america. >> the latest from the hillary clinton campaign. how big of an issue is the economy in this election? >> it is huge. there are millions of americans that do not feel they are getting ahead economically.
they don't feel the benefits of the supposedly covering since the great recession. it is massive. and particularly important in a number of battleground states that have in the past been heavily oriented towards manufacturing jobs. to wintrump is hoping states like ohio and pennsylvania and the ad you just played from hillary clinton's campaign is clearly intended to head him off at the pass. >> these are two 32nd paid spots by the clinton and donald trump campaigns. in 2016 come up with so many media choices, how important is paid advertising by these candidates? >> it is a great question. hillaryld say that clinton has jumped out to a lead in these battleground states because her campaign spent were before donaldon
trump began advertising on tv at all. nevertheless, your point is well made. there is inevitably a saturation point with tv advertising. we don't know at what point that will be hit nor do we know when voters will start to tune into this contest and in a great passion. and therefore could be persuadable by late ads. "theis is the headline on hill." thank you very much for being with us. >> as c-span.org, you can watch our public affairs and political programming any time at your convenience on your desktop or mobile device. go to our home page c-span.org and search on the library program bar. of search list results and click on the program you would like to watch or
refine your search with our search tools. if you're looking for our most current programs, our homepage has many current programs ready for your immediate viewing such as the washington journal or the events we have covered that day. c-span.org is a service of your cable provider. if you are a c-span watcher, check it out on c-span.org. >> next, counterterrorism efforts between the u.s. and european union. francis taylor and judge security and counter terrorism -- took part in this discussion. this is just over an hour. >> good afternoon, folks. welcome.
i direct the transnational press project here and i am joint i might team including caleb johnson, jessica dipaola, and nikita ma'am. -- mann. let me first point out the emergency exits. there is the main staircase. just look for me, caleb johnson, or my other teammates if there is an emergency. project has been in existence for almost 25 years and has completed fieldwork in some 70 countries. it is this widespread fieldwork that we believe delivers to our audiences some of the most important information that goes to policymakers, the intelligence community, were fighters, white house, private sector, the media, and the general public which is why we
hold events like this. we are nearing the end of two important projects. fall where we the will hopefully be launching new -- two new projects, one in north africa and one in central asia. welcomeery happy to general frank taylor. general taylor currently serves as undersecretary of intelligence and announce -- and analysis at the department of homeland security. components with the homeland security intelligence what they need to keep the country safe, secure, and resilient. is a partner to the u.s. intelligence community.
--served as vice president at the general electric company -- andped additional served as ambassador at large and coordinator for counterterrorism. ambassador taylor also served a distinguished 31 year career at the u.s. air force. joining us today from the netherlands on my right is that nations national core nader for counterterrorism. he has been in a number of important positions for his nation serving as direct or ,eneral for public safety deputy secretary-general of the ministry of justice, director general for police, and now in his current position as the national counterterrorism coordinator. he is responsible for cyber security, counterterrorism, and crisis management. the u.s. and the netherlands have a long history of
cooperation including against al qaeda, the taliban, and many other areas of cooperation. we are grateful to have your troops, it your case officers, and others stand alongside us. we do not say it enough but thank you very much for standing with us. today's discussion will focus on intelligence sharing across europe. we have all watched in harder as a series of terrorist attacks hit europe in the last 18 months beginning with charlie hebdo. these terrorists have killed hundreds of people across europe. posteds emerged from the tax is the realization that the information on the perpetrators was not adequately shared within and among nations. factors are aof
reason for this. national laws regarding privacy and differences between them, insufficient human and financial resources. counterterrorism fatigue and the sheer difficulty of preventing attacks from clandestine organizations that use highly cryptic devices. this is very difficult to challenge. in an effort to improve this and remove those impediments, the dutch government while holding the presidency of the european toon created a roadmap improve intelligence sharing. general taylor will remark on the range of threats we are facing today and talk about the great relationship we have with the netherlands and other issues the general would like to ring up. for those of you joining online or watching us on c-span, you
can send us a question via twitter using cfi underscore threats. with that, i will turn this over. ladies and gentlemen, it is wonderful for me to be here and stand here in front of you to talk about the and norma's challenge we have. that may also say that i am very happy to sit at the generals table. it is terrific that you brought us together today. with all of the recent developments in europe in the last few years, i can imagine you are interested in finding about what a threat looks like in europe and what we are doing to counteract that. try to give you an idea of what we do starting with my
own country. the federalist threat in the netherlands has been assessed as substantial. the chance of attack and the netherlands israel. at present, the threat to the netherlands is jihadist in neutral. there were increasing links to the netherlands. since early 2016, the number of travel specifically to syria was declining. 264 and dutch terrorist fighters reached approximately 180 are still present in that region. in reaction to this threat, in 2016 through 2020, key elements are the threat-based approach,
which means priorities are based on the current threat situation. a comprehensive approach, which means if we take defensive and aggressive measures, in cases using interdisciplinary measures. the comprehensive approach takes the form of community engagement. the combination of network and individual approaches means we identify networks and attempts to undermine them. as we apply a specific approach, particular attention is given to loan actors, individuals who have a potential for violence. we do this in respect to the rule of law. then on to europe. isis has been directing and coordinating and preparing attacks in europe since 2013. the recent attacks in brussels and paris have made this
painfully clear. these are most likely still -- there are most likely various isis cells present in europe who may attempt to carry out attacks in the near future. broad scale attacks in europe by al qaeda also continue to exist. lnoeone actors pose a threat. the recent attacks in france, belgium, and germany. the current efforts by the anti-isis coalition have seen an increase in people traveling to syria. increase in people traveling to syria. we have increased attention for people returning from syria back to the netherlands and also back to europe. they are questioned upon returning to the netherlands, and if there's a suspicion of terrorist activities, he or she will be put into custody.
we monitor every returnee closely. there is an influx of so-called -- they are using refugee roots to get into europe. we know their isis operatives active in europe. they took advantage of this refugee crisis to travel from syria to europe and back. sometimes for a short while. at the eu borders are monitored more closely, entrance into the netherlands has somewhat diminished. it still requires our full attention and monitoring capacities. the nature of the threat is crucial to improve international information. recent terrorist attacks underlying that terrorists do
not respect international borders. the and attack may be preceded by preparatory acts in a great number of countries. it is crucial that all relevant information in the field of counterterrorism is shared between authorities of different countries. we must take all necessary steps to ensure that the right people have the right information at the right time. so they can intervene by checking people and cargo at the border. by investigating actual threats and arresting someone and prosecuting him or her. we have seen positive developments in europe over the past two years in this regard. the amount of law enforcement information that is shared through organizations is increasing significantly. europe poll has set up a counterterrorism center for crosschecks within the law-enforcement community regarding terrorism.
also, new instruments have been and continue to be developed. an important development is the use of pnr to counterterrorism and serious crime. with the new eu directors, all states are required to set up departments examination of the data. they are exploring technology that allows member states to examine information in a real-time in an anonymous way. without breaching privacy or revealing modus operandi. an informal group has been established. in the field of security services, big steps have been taken european corporation with the counter terrorism group. informal working group structure of intelligent services in the eu member states as well as norway and switzerland.
over the last few months, a platform and database have become operational, or which -- through which services share information on succession for an -- six set -- suspected terrorist fighters. i cannot go into details, but suffice to say, this is yielding operations. still, we feel more needs to be done. this is why the improvement of international corporations is one of the priorities during the dutch eu presidency. we have taken the ambitious initiative to set up a roadmap for the field of law enforcement, counterterrorism, and border integration. this roadmap includes necessary access to improve information management and a cross-border exchange of information, including the interoperability of systems. the purpose is to support operational investigations, specifically, in counterterrorism.
realizing there is a close connection between terrorism and crime, and to swiftly provide frontline assistance to police officers and border cops and custom officers. comprehensive, topical, and high-quality information. a single service interface forces the effectiveness of operational investigations. the basic tenet of this roadmap is that all relevant information should be shared, unless there are strong operational or legal reasons not to do so. it includes a uniform application of -- and uniform messaging format. access to key systems to share information, the visa information system, and the fingerprints.
each a silent finger print database is there. and consistently -- each asylum print database is there. the implementation of the actions is an ongoing process, most changes are for seen for this year and next year. in the adaption of this roadmap, europe has shown strong political commitment to feed and use information systems to the maximum extent. for achieving an effective sharing of information, which will enhance trust between operational actors. they show strong commitment to the change of information operation in the fight against terrorism. without sacrificing core values within the european union, such as privacy and data protection. latest gentlemen, the roadmap will enable us better to prevent the unnoticed crossing of borders by suspected or known
terrorist fighters, and deferred terrorist attacks. -- deter terrorist attacks. we also have a confidence with united states. the importance of informational exchange at an international level is clear. it is in our common security interest to keep improving our cooperation in this respect. only together we will be able to fight this threat effectively, and keep our society as safe as possible. thank you for your attention. [applause] mr. sanderson: thank you. general taylor, over to you. general taylor: it's a pleasure to be at csis, certainly to see my good friend tom sanderson, and to be on the same stage with my close colleague, dick schoof, in this fight that we have against terrorism.
the netherlands is one of dhs's closest partners in europe and internationally. a number of the programs that dhs is of limited internationally originally did gush originated as pilot programs in the netherlands. we are faced the issue of foreign terrorist fighters for a long time, and i have been to the netherlands several times to see their impressive work firsthand. most recently, the deputy secretary and i were in amsterdam. the ministerial focused on cooperation in a broad range of justice and security issues, including migration, ct, money laundering, data protection, criminal law cooperation, child sexual explication, and organized crime. rct discussions during the ministerial in besides need for improved information exchange,
particularly the dutch roadmap of the information sharing among european services. we are now working with the current eu presidency in slovakia, on implementation of this very, very important initiative. nearly 15 years after the 9/11 attacks, it is still a dangerous world. san bernardino, orlando, egypt, nice, brussels, paris, and other attacks are terrible reminders of the threat we face. we have moved from a world of terrorist directed attacks to a world that includes the threat of terrorist inspired attacks. attacks by those who are living among us, who self radicalized, and are inspired by terrorist propaganda on the internet. by the nature of the terrorist
inspired -- by their nature, terrorist inspired attacks are often difficult to detect by intelligence and law enforcement communities. they can occur with little or no notice, and in general, make for a more complex homeland security challenge. this threat environment has required a whole new type of response that goes beyond traditional ct and law enforcement approaches to address the threat of homegrown violent extremists. we are enhancing our comprehensive efforts aimed at addressing the root causes to prevent the next generation of recruiters. i would like to disclose with a view from homeland security -- the threat vectors we believe we face. first, in aviation security. that al qaeda and al qaeda in the arabian peninsula, and isis continue to see an attack on aviation as an important part of their strategy.
this year, we have seen three airliners attacked in the sinai, and twice in somalia. we have clear indications that our enemies are trying to perfect ways of introducing explosives and other devices onto aircraft, for the purposes of destroying them in mid flight. aviation security, both in the united states and across the globe, remain a high priority. as we look at the vast borders of our country, we want to expand those borders into -- across the world. as the secretary mentions, to play offense or defense on the one yard line of the enemy, as opposed to playing defense on our one yard line, and strengthening border security. critical to that is the information exchange between our partners across the globe, to better understand who these individuals are that are transiting our borders for
nefarious purposes. the fourth threat -- the third threat is cyber security. and the protection of our cyber domains. we been designated as the point of contact for the protection of. gov, and more importantly, for the sharing of threat information for the private sector. it's an area of increased concern with all the reports of hacking and things that are going on across the world. and finally, preventing homegrown violent extremists. as i mentioned, we are in a new environment today of -- where the enemy isn't necessarily sending operatives. they are getting on social media and recruiting folks who are u.s. citizens or citizens of our colleagues across the world to commit terrorist attacks within their homeland.
they do not have to travel to syria or iraq, they can't, from the comfort of their home, read the propaganda and radicalized themselves. we believe that a big part of our mission in homeland security is outrage to -- outreach to the american muslim community, who, by the way, are the targets of this propaganda within our own country. to help those communities build strategies to defend against this propaganda -- the social media propaganda that are causing young men and women to take up the isil banner. thank you. mr. sanderson: thank you, frank and dick. we have one question that come in on the twitter account. on e-mail or context.-- or in text.
this comes from matt levitt, who you all know at the washington institute. he is one of the top counterterrorism specialists in the u.s., and one of the top hezbollah experts. just prior to the brussels bombing, a gore nader issued a report saying several electronics -- several states had no electronic connection data poll. information sharing to still not reflect the threat. european databases record only 2700 four and -- for interpreters, despite estimates that 5000 syrian people have traveled. 90% of the reports say members came from five states. have we made tangible progress? mr. schoof: yes.
. [laughter] mr. sanderson: moving on. mr. schoof: let me elaborate. the european counterterrorism corridor was quite right in mentioning what he said. what he said was true. within the dha council, the meeting of the ministers for different member states of the european union, we had this informal report. it was noted there as well. the statistics on paper. in general, and for each country itself. and we have seen a tremendous progress in the statistics -- sort of after the paris attacks. a lot of information is being shared. the interval database is now in most countries and is connected. the sharing information system is much better felt by the five
countries mentioned, but everyone really entering that information in these databases. we made a lot of progress. a little bit more than just a guess. general taylor: i would certainly agree that we have made great progress. i think the work within your poll -- eurpopol has been spectacular. the cooperation of law enforcement and the sharing of ct information. but also multilateral within the eu and the u.s. has been strengthened. we strengthened agreements -- dick was just here to sign the agreement to strengthen the exchange of that information. i'm pleased that the intelligence services in europe have come together in sharing more information among
themselves. but you are never satisfied. this is a business where you can't rest on your laurels. we live in a very dynamic information environments. one piece of information not shared could be the basis of a very successful terrorist attack. we have made progress, there is still a town of work to do to improve that sharing, both between the eu and the u. s. but also within the eu and the eu partnership. mr. sanderson: my former colleague is in the room, and we went to the syria/turkey border to interview a trafficker at the border. he dealt in all sorts of things that he moved over the border. people, weapons, etc. one of his specialties was passports.
he would buy passports from europeans coming in who were joining the islamic state, no longer believed they were citizens of the european country from which they came. he would resell them and repurpose them. he had access to everything. it was really remarkable. we interviewed him on two occasions. that prevents -- resents -- presents a terrible problem. can you give us a look at the important program that brings women and men back in cross borders. at the same time, it thousands of individuals who come from europe on european passports to fight and can return and then travel to the united states. general taylor: that's for me. let's start with the fact that the visa waiver program is not a waiver of a visa program. it is a security program that
individuals have to apply for and have to provide certain data that is screened against our holdings with regards to central threats that they present. one of the most important parts of that is their identity, who they actually are. that's a part of that validation occurs. there's concern certainly for anyone coming out of syria with a fake passport. we believe that the strength of the visa waiver program that we use to that -- to vett those individuals, is very strong. there are additional data elements that are required under the program for folks to apply.
i think it is a threat that we are most concerned with. our colleagues in the immigration customs enforcement area are working very closely with european partners and others on fake documentation and passports. we are getting better and better at understanding what that risk is. and how that risk may manifest itself within the visa waiver program going forward. mr. sanderson: any comments? mr. schoof: not directly in relation to the visa waiver program. i'm quite sure you would agree that every known traveler is being signaled on this passport is being put in the shared information system, being put into the document said it so we at least know that there is regard for these documents. we've seen it, at least we know. that's very important.
i think in that respect, we've come a long way. 2016 certainly looks different than 2014. mr. sanderson: let's open it up to the audience. please wait for the microphone, since we have folks listening online. >> thanks. my question applies to all three. tom, if you want to answer this. in the watches of night, i seem to think sometimes we exaggerate danger of terrorism. you go back 140 years ago, historically, the danger was certainly as great or much greater. kings, queens, czars, presidents were being routinely assassinated. alfred nobel was wrote with the greatest contributor to terrorism by inventing dynamite. 1919, 1820, there were 24 letter bombs that were mailed
throughout the country that induced a huge panic, tens of thousands were summarily arrested and deported, etc. do we learn anything from that time? . maybe it was more than just world war i and the depression, but that bout of terrorism that went on for 30 or 40 or 50 years seemed to dissipate. is there anything to be learned from that particular history? if you go back and reason newspapers and the press at the time, terrorism was probably seen as a much greater danger that it was today. what do we have to learn? is it possible to terrorism may be rather like the little -- a passing fad -- like the hula -hoop, a passing fad? mr. sanderson: things do have their faces, they come and go. the concern now is that terrorists have social media and potential access to wmd biomaterials.
i'm sure they did have access to biomaterials, but the social media multiplier is unbelievable. isis puts out 90,000 messages a day, or they didn't the height of their activity. certainly, we can learn from looking back and saying the sky is not falling, we can have these terrorism incidents and we need to have resilience, major part of what the department of homeland security focus is on. we do need to remember and look to other countries that have dealt with this -- israel, for example. the u.k. for many years, and understand there is a way forward without trampling on privacy, without causing divides within cultures and communities. what we have today is quite serious. i know everyone typically says it has never been this bad as it is today. but the reality is technology is such a force multiplier for these folks.
need to be concerned that a significant level. i don't think you are suggesting we should not be. but in terms of lessons from the past, you move on and eventually things change. but right now, we are in the midst of it. the worst of it, i think. general taylor: i would just, that i'm in my 48th year of service, both in public and private sector. i cut my teeth in turkey back in 1972. which was also a time of very heightened threats, in turkey, not so much from the pkk, but from the dh k pc. we have seen groups, go over time. i think the thing that -- two perspectives. first, the world is coming apart because of terrorism. we are much safer today from the terrorist threat that we have
ever been. which is why our national terrorism advisory system tells americans the nature of the threat we are facing, which is the homegrown bombings extremist in an attack out of the blue not an attack al qaeda 9/11 style, an attack that we have worked very hard to stem that type of attack. what worries me in the future is how many young people are being taught hate in failed states across the country. tom mentioned going -- when i was corridor for counterterrorism in 2001, with the state department, one of our initiatives -- you could see the roots of potential failed states of this philosophy moving into those areas.
in many ways, it has in the course of the last 15 years. i don't think it's a chicken little sky is falling situation. but if we continue to see failed states and we continue to see this terrorist philosophy promulgated across this failed states, i think it does create a longer-term problem than we have had in the past. mr. schoof: it is an interesting question. i think that every politician or operational guide working through the counterterrorism operation asks themselves that question. i think the world has changed tremendously. this is the world of masked medication, a global world, mass panic maybe even. and terrorists are certainly the currency of this movements, and
they're are operating in a totally different world, where xenophobia can combine with religious threats and etc. etc. the potential danger of undermining our open democratic society is much bigger than it would have been 100 years ago. i think from my perspective, most of the work i do, it's really important that the government official to always look very carefully at the way you communicate. the government should community -- can indicate very transparently and openly about threats. and not create its own fear by reacting. that's the most important thing we can learn. at the same time, don't underestimate the danger of the current terrorist threat. mr. sanderson: the fourth row here. and please identify yourself. >> i am ali mohammed from afghanistan.
former director of counterterrorism and intelligence in afghanistan. my question is, how much progress we have made on policy labels with the countries that embrace terrorism within their religious and educational institutions, like pakistan and saudi arabia and this is a direct factor of radicalism and extremism in the west. we just discussed technicalities of counterterrorism, how much progress that we made on the policy level to convince our allies not to use those methods for radicalizing their society
against the west? thank you. mr. sanderson: i'm happy to take a crack at it, since i am sitting between two sitting government officials. let me just say from all the work i have done, including hundreds of interviews with government officials from some of the countries you mentioned, and many others, it depends on the country. but those that are primary source countries of violent extremists and terrorists in the ideology, not a lot is being done. that ideology, those acting with it or is the vanguard at the global jihadi movements are doing the bidding of some folks in those governments. for local needs, for regional needs, for global needs and goals they are trying to obtain. there is also the question of
whether they can control the ideology and control the clerics and stop extreme hard-line clerics, whether they control the dog on that leash. that they have used to harass particular parts of their country, different ethnic groups, different neighbors that they have disputes with. as long as those militant groups serve as a tool for those governments, which they continue to do, we will not see a significant reduction in the incidence of radicalization of the ideology, the attacks. to the point where we look at many of these countries and we really wonder whether we should call them allies or major non-nato allies, or nato allies themselves. i'm speaking specifically about turkey, which now is in a different position than it was. if you years ago, the door was wide open and people came across into syria. we have a lot of partners out there who are good partners in some areas, and turkey is.
pakistan can be. saudi arabia as well. good partners. in other areas, they are not as good as they could be. and that's my opinion. general taylor: i would say to that is that in each of the cases, we do have partners in saudi arabia and pakistan who are working mutually with us and other parts of the world against these threats. as tom mentioned, sometimes these forces are hard to leash once they have been unleashed. the challenge is continuing to work with our partners. i have gone to the reeducation schools in saudi arabia. they are very effective from a government -- reeducation is probably not the right term. demobilization, d radicalization places. i think that both governments
and other governments around the world are trying to work with that problem. but each of those countries has also been the target of terrorist activities. to tom's earlier point, once you deal with -- once these forces are within a country, it's very difficult to control. that is why working very closely with our partners, we try to help them to get at solving the problems in their country and how the problems being manifested elsewhere. mr. schoof: the currency of the threat is not only to the rest of the world. they are attacking a stumble and saudi arabia. they are attacking anywhere. everybody is the enemy except their own small group. i think we have the same feeling -- i would like to mention the global force. the united states code -- cochaired.
the netherlands are cochairing. we are creating excellent partnerships because the threat is against all of us. mr. sanderson: right here in the aisle. >> my name is jacqueline sutherland with the chertoff group. over the past nine months, we've really seen an increase in soft targets being attacked by terrorist actors in brussels, paris, nice, is simple, but then i know that just last week, interpol cannot with a report saying they are checking to see many more paris style spectacular attacks as more isis fighters come back to europe. what do you really see as the more urgent threat at the moment, having many more soft target terrorist attacks, or these coordinated attacks like paris?
mr. schoof: that is a very difficult question. both are true. i think the current situation of the islamic state is getting even smaller geographic territory. it probably puts a lot of terror -- pressure on the current foreign fighters to return to their countries. they are more violent than ever. they are more radicalized, there certainly -- isis -- they want to attack. they can connect with the local radical groups, and i can be a very toxic development -- and that can be a very toxic development that can lead to either more attacks on soft targets, inspired, as the general said, organized and directed. both are possible. you might say everything is possible under that situation.
certainly short-term is not going to be better. general taylor: i would say you have to play the entire field. can't play off one against the other and mention the aviation threat. that doesn't go away civilly because isil is attacking in paris. that threat continues. you need a multitiered effort to do it. you have to engage the owners and operators of critical infrastructure, as we do in this country every day, to get them to better understand the risk landscape and methodologies for protecting commercial facilities theaters, all the other places we've seen attacks in. i think you also have to look at the intelligence these of this, as these foreign fighters return area in many cases, we know who they are. given the amount of intelligence we had and the effect of law enforcement and intelligence operations to determine what they are up to, continued investigation.
the fbi has announced that it has investigations in all 50 states. effective investigations with state and local partners. all contribute to the defense, if you will, against these kind s of threats and risks that we face both in europe and in the homeland. you can't prevent them all. what you can do to the extent that you have information and knowledge that you can apply to try to mitigate those risks, that you apply that in a consistent fashion, both from a law-enforcement security, intelligence, and most important ly, from owner operator perspective in terms of empowering owner operators to understand how to mitigate risk in an open society. mr. sanderson: the question coming in from an advisor to the tnt program, former associate deputy director of operations at
the cia. he asks will brexit negatively impact the improvements made in eu counterterrorism efforts? mr. schoof: u.k. was a strong supporter of everything we did. i am sure even with greg they will still be a strong supporter. but when they are not a member state anymore, we have to make other legal arrangements to make sure it's going to work. it will be more work, but the intention will still be the same. we work around it. mr. sanderson: does it, take things for dhs -- complicate things for dhs? general taylor: it does not. we have strong bilateral partnerships with the u.k. we think that will continue. we think it will be a strong partner in europe, if not in the eu, information sharing and best practices. brexit will come and go, we believe our security cooperation