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tv   Charlie Rose  PBS  January 13, 2017 12:00pm-1:01pm PST

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. >> rose: welcome to the program. tonight in an exit interview reflecting his time as secretarh carter. >> as they lose their territory, it's going to be harder for them to plan and coordinate complicated attacks, so that's good. and the narrative that fuels the inspired attacker as opposed to the organized attacker, organized attackers will have less of a base an a free territory to operate from. that's a good thing. but when the islamic state is so obviously destroyed, it means that those who were, you know, the person on the internet who has never been to iraq and sir why and doesn't really-- but gets inspired to carry out a
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violent act, the expectation is that that inoperation will also go down. that will make us safer. as well. >> the secretary of he fence ash carter for the hour, next. >> funding for charlie >> rose: funding for "charlie rose" has been provided by the following: >> and by bloomberg, a provider of multimedia news and information services worldwide. captioning sponsored by rose communications from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. >> rose: ash cart certificate here, is he the outgoing secretary of defense, president obama appointed him in december 2014. the role marks a capstone to a decades long career at the pentagon which began during the
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cold war extending into the cyberage. he has served 11 secretaries of defense in both democratic and ep can administrations. he was a washedded the defense intelligence metal in the department's distinguished service petal five times. confirmation hears for general james mattis to succeed him took place today in front of the armed services committee. i'm pleased to have secretary ash carter back at this table. welcome. >> thank, good to be here. >> rose: we have done these conversations when were you in office and out of office. so i appreciate you coming by am taking from the time you have been secretary of defense, tell me what you set out to do and what you believe you have accomplished. what was your highest agenda? >> well, in the here and now, it was to put us on a path with respect to the principle palled dangers that we face today. which are first and fore most isil and put together the campaign plan which you now see
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unfolding towards the destruction of isil. second, a traj strategic approach to russia and iran, possibly russian aggression, iran, north korea, china. those are our principal here and thousand problems. to put together a strategic approach and get us on the path. the other thing is that if you are secretary of defense, you, your other job is to make sure that your successor and your successors successor have what i have which is the finest fietding force the world has ever known. i've inherited that from decades behind us. and i need to pass that on. and that's in people, it's in technology. and it's making sure that we're competitive and that we're ahead of everyone else. those are the two things that i have tried to accomplish over the last two years and you're right, a 35 year old involvement of the depprtment of defense. >> people look at this world today in 2017 and they say use
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this term. there is a new world order. how has this structure changed. i mean people look at and they say there are three main powers, russia because of the nubbing clear weapons that it has. certainly china because it's growing. and there is a united states. but is the world order changing? who plays what role? >> well, we, that is the united states still is by far and away in terms of comprehensive military power, the strongest in the world am you mentioned two other important powers, russia and china and they are extemely important. but there are others. india, japan, europe as a bloc. and i think in addition to our military strength, the thing that sets the united states aside is, and i hear this all the time, charlie when i travel around the world, foreign leaders say to me, we really like working with your people. and it's not just that they are
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awesomely capable. it's what they stand for as well. people, our values and what we stand for in the way we conduct ourselves with other people, those things are valued. that is why the united states has not only the strongest military in the world. if you think about it, we have all the friends and allies and most of our major antagonists have few or none. >> when you look at the world today, and the nature of warfare, is there dramatic increase in the possibility of cyberwarfare and the ability to defend against it? >> sure, there's certainly a dramatic increased role of sien in warfare. i'm hesitant to say cyberwarfare because it suggests that you cabin cyberattack-- i think an attack is an attack. and we do not, it's in the our doctrine and our practice to limit our response to an attack
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on the united states to the way in which we are attacked. so if it comes in cyber, we may do that. we pay do something els it's also true that our net-- our military works on networks. it's one of the things that makes us the best, our planes, our ships, our t t are all networked together. if i don't de-- defend that, that is job one for me, making sure our network, our wartime network is secure. also i talked about the next generation. the kids would come in are, you know, kids without have been on iphones their whole lives. they're not going to understand a style of operating or leadership that doesn't involve technology. so simply to connect with the next generation we have to stay ahead in information. so i have a lot of different things we do. but yes, it's part of warfare. but i just, i always caution
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people to say, you know, warfare isn't cyberwarfare. it's warfare. cyberis a dimension. >> and the national security area, what is the legacy of barack obama. >> well, he has a number of them. but i would say in so far as we are concerned, i have been greatful for his support and approval and his encouragement. as i put together with the staff, general joe dunford and presented to him over the last 14, 15 months, step by step an accelerating campaign against isil, president obama has approved every step we've asked for and sometimes that's difficult, you know. in the environment. >> he has not wanted to be any less aggressive than you wanted to be. >> well, i think he told me early on that he wanted to get rid of isil.
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and i took him at his word and he kept his word. >> gave you everything you needed in terms of. >> every time you asked-- in terms of boots on the ground. aircraft, money requested from congress. authority. >> everything you have requested he has given you. >> he has granted us every request that we have made. and i've been very grateful for that. because we have continuously seen opportunities. you know when you do a raid you capture a guy, you learn something that leads to another raid, another air strike. every time we reached another step or we had trained some more iraqi forces, for example, for what is now the, what will be the taking of mosul, i think you see it under way now. our plan for that, we devietioned 15 months ago. >> you and i talked about that. >> we did. and we needed to train the iraqi
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forces. we needed to position them there. and then support them for the destruction of isil. in northern iraq. and at every step we were as general dunford were saying to ourselves and talking to our could mannedder-- can mannedders, how can he with make that could faster, how can we hasten that process. every time we saw a new way we wanted to do more. i consistently said we're going to do more every time we see an opportunity to do more. and every time we have asked for more, he has given us. so i have been gratedful for that. and it has allowed us to both in iraq and syria carry out the plan. i'm encouraged. we're on the plan, both those places. and it's necessary to destroy isil in iraq and syria. because that is necessary to destroy both the fact and the idea that there could be an
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islamic state based upon this ideology. it's necessary, it's not sufficient because we have to operate against them elsewhere in the world where little nests of isil arise. and of course our top priority is their external operators, that is the people who are plotting attacks upon western countries and ourselves, that we're killing those people, we're disrupting. >> is that ratcheting up as they lose territory in iraq and syria because that is the only means they have. >> well, they're constantly trying to do more in that area. as they lose their territory, it's going to be harder for them to plan and coordinate complicated attacks. so that's good. and the narrative that fuels the inspired attacker as opposed to the organized attacker, the organizerred attackers will have less of a base and a free territory to operate from.
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that's a good thing. but when the islamic state is so obviously destroyed, it means that those who are, you know, the person on the internet who has never been to iraq and syria but gets inspired to carry out a violent act, the expectation is that that inoperation will also go down, that will make us safer as well. so they will relocate from moss you will and raqqa, those that we don't kill there. we'll kill as many as we can. but there will be those who try to isolate. and we will pursue them working with the iraqis and syrian forces else where in the country. it will take some time and be a sustained effort. >> i want to talk about that, has the taking of mosul been a more difficult challenge than all of the military strategists thought would be. >> no, it's pretty much gone the way we thought. we thought it would be
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difficult. >> rose: they were dug in. >> yes. and we were ready for anything simply because as we've gone in-- from ramadi to are youa to makmor, to kiara, taking step by step, the isil devices and then over in syria, whether shadai of or particular rit, each of the battles in those cities had a different timek-- dynamic and sometimes they fought harder and sometimes they didn't fight as hard. we knew they would fight hard for mosul. we also knew that mosul's defenses were really, charlie, a set of shells. con centric shells. and you saw us in the early weeks punch through the first shellment and then you get to the next. and they're now through that, to the inner city now. the eastern side of the city. and then there is a citadel in the middle. and so they're in between that
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second line and the citadel on the eastern side of the city. then they will go up to the tigris river. and then cross over and mount defense it has always been our plan. and so it's going-- pretty much according to plan. >> rose: when do you think mosul will. >> this is a war. and in war you don't predict. my answer to that is-- . >> rose: plans change at the point of first contact. >> our plan is pretty clear and our plan hasn't changed. we're pretty much on the schedule we thought in our plan but i would rather overdeliver. and that's what our commanders have consistently done there. let me put this t this way. i'm kf debt-- confident of the result. i have no doubt. >> rose: it has to take place in 2017. >> i believe so, yes, absolutely. >> rose: how about raqqa. >> same thing. >> rose: 2017. >> yeah, yeah,. >> rose: both of them.
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>> yeah, i do. i do. i think that that is in the plan. there is every reason to have that expectation am again i always want to say it's war and reality in the dynamics of war intervenement but we have the momentum. we have the plan. we have the forces, or are assembling the forces and i'm confident that it will occur. >> do you think will you capture and kill a baghdadi. >> we will eventually. >> do we know where he is. >> if i knew exactly where he was, first of all i want tell you and second of all he wouldn't have long. he moves around. i'm just confident, i don't want to say any more than that. but i wouldn't want to be a senior isil leader. many of them have died already. the more we do,he more we learn about where they are, so his days are numbered, and
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that's true of all the other western leadership. >> baghdadi's days are numbered. >> absolutely. >> have the russians given you any help at all? >> no. and that's a real source of disappointment only in the sense, disappointed only in the sense that they said they would do otherwise. >> rose: they said they would be against isil and they're coming in in part to take on isil and al nousra. >> they said they would do two things. one is to help end the syrian civil war which is one of the sources of this whole thing. by knowledging aside bashar assad, keeping the structure of the syrian government in some sense, so the place doesn't completely disintegrated. but allowing it to be governed with the moderate opposition as well, beginning to put back together a country and a more
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desent life than that poor, tragically stricken population has had for the last few years. they didn't do that, they doubled down on the civil war. >> rose: they doubled down in their support of assad. >> correct. and you see what the consequences are. >> rose: what are the consequences of their doubling down in support of assad. >> you saw in aleppo, well, a continued lawyer of people. and a continued drive towards extremism among those who oppose assad. so that's not what they said they would do. they did something different. the other thing they said they would do is fight isil, that is not what they are doing. they are fighting mostly the moderate opposition. so it's very hard to associate ourselves and certainly we have not cooperated in that because it's not aligned with our interests. we do have a military to military channel to make sure we
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don't create incidents with one another. that's very professional. it works very well. but in the larger sense, because they haven't done what they said they would do, we haven't been able to associate ourselves with what they are doing. >> rose: it has been argued by diplomats and the state department that they needed more leverage on the ground in order to have some diplomatic effort. and they simply didn't have it. they put together that in terms of a criticism of our military presence on the ground t is said that secretary kerry wanted to do more are cooperation with the russians in terms of air strikes what can you say? >> well, these are two different things. >> rose: right. >> there are those and who you you read it out in the press, who would have had the united states join the civil war in syria.
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we have not gone to war with the syrian regime as a military. >> rose: why not. >> because that, that is an undertaking and this a decision the president made consistently. that would be not to try to settle the civil war but again to try to overthrow the government of syria. that say very big project as we have discovered. >> rose: and a risk that the united states is not willing to take. >> it's not a matter of risk, it is a matter of where our interests lie. >> rose: our interests are not in getting. >> our interests are first and fore most in destroying isil. and that we have managed to do. >> rose: but that runs right up against the argument that as long as assad is there he is a recruiting tool for isil. >> well, that doesn't mean that we cannot and don't have to protect ourselves against isil, charlie. even though the civil war is
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raging in syria, it does mean that syria is going to be a continuing source of tum ult in the region, but the solution to the syrian civil war that we have favored, i think is the right one, is a solution in which there is a political transition from the assad regime to a government that is mor the right approach to isil is destruction, military destruction, and we have taken that. >> rose: there was nothing that we could have done to make the result better than on the ar, we will take-- we willthis destroy isil this year. >> uh-huh. >> rose: nothing, no alternative that you thought was possible. >> what we are doing against isil, absolutely not. we had to do everything we could
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bely could, we have added every ingredient we possibly could. every accelerant as our phrase is to the campaign to destroy isil. that's about protecting our people, charlie. and that is at the end of the day, that is the most important responsibility of the department of defense. is to protect our people. and that necessary taited the focus that we've had on isil. and we are-- we are on the path to meeting our objectives there. and that's been job one for me and i think appropriately job one for us. >> rose: i'm asking the question, i have to ask it more than once. when you look at what has happened to aleppo and when you look at the destruction of syria from that civil war it is such a tragedy, when you look at it, is there any sense on your part that maybe there was something else we could do, that we didn't do? or we didn't do it in time.
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>> i am ---- this is a tragic situation that the united states did not have other ways to prevent than the ways that i think were attempted. i think the right approach, i've said this before, is, was a political transition. we tried to foster that, that is what you saw secretary kerry trying to work with the russians. but they didn't do that. they didn't go along with that. that was the right approach to take. neither the russians nor assad, i didn't expect assad to do that but the russians said that they were going to try to promote that. that was a reasonable thing for them to do. therefore it was a reasonable thing for us to attempt to work with them on. but that's not what they did, charlie. and but in so far as the protection of our own people from terrorists in iraq and
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syria is concerned which is my responsibility, we have done what i recommended and what i thought was necessary, and what i think is going to succeed in destroying isil. >> rose: what is it you think drives vladimir putin? what does he want? >> i don't know. but here's what i observe. by the way, i have worked with the russians, chartie, as you probably know, for 30 years. and including some eras very coop ralt-- cooperatively. i was the person who ran the program that worked with the russians to control all the nuclear weapons of the former sov yent union whens wall came down and the cold war ended. i negotiated with the russians to get them into thes could vow, an example very, the opposite-- k osovo an opposite outcome to syria to try to settle the kosovo civil war in the balance cans in the 1990s.
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so i have-- balance kans in the 1990s so, have i some concerns with that, our experience-- what we should be doing always is to wear our interests can be aligned with that of another power, work with them cooperatively. for the first quarter century after the end of the cold war, there were many areas where that was possible. those areas particularly under putin have narrowed in-- . >> rose: why is that? >> progressively. i'm not the person to ask that to. but one way in which they have-- by the way, there still are some areas where we worked productively with them, for example, nonprolive raise regarding north korea, iran. >> rose: the iranian nuclear deal. >> exactly. but the-- one of the things that russia seems to do under putin
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is define an objective of that warting or frustrating the united states and the international community or trying to, as an objective in itself. charlie, it's very hard to build a strategic bridge to that motivation. and otherwise it's part of military deplom see to build bridges to common interests where you can. and then stand strong where you can't. in the russia relationship we're bother strong. and balanced. but we have had to emphasize the strength part, both unilaterally and within nato in recent years. i mean we have now a deter ant strategy for rush-- russian aggression in europe. for about a quarter century we didn't have to do that. now we do. we're putting money behind that.
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we're putting forces behind that. we're putting operational plans behind that. >> rose: and that includes the baltic states. >> definitely, they're nato states. >> rose: do you believe the russians have intent to do something about the baltic states other than to make those states feel like they are under their influence? >> we need to be ready for anything that could happen, first of all. >> rose: militarily we're ready for anything they do in the baltic states. >> we have plans for-- yes, absolutely, to respond to aggression in the baltic states. and not just traditional aggression of the traditional military sort but including the kind of what we call hybrid warfare, the little green men phenomenon that you saw in ukraine. >> rose: right. >> yes. >> rose: what do you make of hacking by the russians in temples of american is political process? >> well, i can't add anything to what the intelligence community and the fbi have said on that.
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they did careful intelligence work. they obviously-- it in a very painstaking way reported the conclusions that they did. and that you heard about a couple of weaks ago. and i think that is a, an aggression upon the united states that we have responded to, but i with say that's just the beginning. my geses is it is the floor and not the ceiling. >> rose: henry kissinger went to china in part as leverage against russia, soviet union. some suggested that maybe some what week to see a better relationship with russia to that wart the ambitions of china. does that make sense to you? >> the, you're right, there say long history of-- history of expectation including fond expectation by americans that
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show russians and chinese will partially check one another. i don't expect that really. i think we have, they are different places, we have a different relationship with both of them. we have with both of them a relationship that has competitive aspects to it. but also cooperative aspects as i've said when you asked me before, the ones with the cooperative ones with russia, unfortunately, have been shrinking but we have to be realistic about that. with china, the-- there is is a strand an as peskt chinese strategic thinking which recognizes that the peace and prosperity of the economic region over the last seven decades of which they have been a part, has only been possible
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because there's been peace and security. and the u.s. presence and roll there has been essential to that peace and security. there is another strain in chinese thinking which goes back long in chinese history that they deserve to be dom nanlt, that is over-- dominant in the region that is something that not only the united states is a specific power naturally will resist am but that all the other countries of the region will as well. what we see today in addition to our own determination to continue to-- we're improving our military capability there in every way. and we're making enormous investments. we call it the rebalance. we've shifted a lot of resources to the asia-pacifics, specifically to make it clear that the united states is going to continue to play a pivotal military role in the asia-pacific. but what chinese, that second
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strand of chinese behavior, the effect it is having is to drive many in the region into our arms, essentially, looking for greater cooperation with us. and also-- . >> rose: because as china becomes more aggressive they feel the need for some relationship. >> that's right. >> rose: and alliances that ta will bolster them. >> on top of which, many of them are in their own right rising military powers. japan, under abe. india des pine-- des tinned to be a major region power. even vietnam with which we have such a complex history, i have been in the harbor, i know their defense ministers going back, several of their defense ministers. now that's a relationship that you never would have thought would have gotten where it did today. so it's actually having the effect, this second strand of chinese behavior of
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strengthening our alliances and partnerships in the regionment now that's not the reason we wish that to happen. but it is having that effect. >> rose: south china sea, is it fair to say that child you have been secretary of defense, they have been more aggressive in the south china sea, both in terms of looking and putting different kinds of military facilities on some of those islands? is that an accurate statement? >> they have certainly done more than any other-- by the way, there are other countries that are dredging military islands. >> these disputes about the territory. but china has done by far more than anyone else. and thases' the reason that we have taken the actions that we have to continue as i say to fly, sail and operate. >> rose: on the principle of the freedom of navigation. >> right. so our operations have not changed, will not change. >> rose: but has it stopped them? >> no.
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it has not stopped them. i think that xi jinping said that he intended, i have not seen that, have i seen little pauses here and there. but have i to think we expect this is that second strand of chinese behavior in action and we need to act against it. i don't expect that we can eliminate that strain of thinking. i think we have to thaik take that as a real to which we need to react and against which we need to plan and have the military capabilities. in the defense department, that is what we were doing. we should continue to do diplomatically what our diplomats have been doing which is to try to get them to change course. but remember, my job is to make sure we're prepared if they don't change course. and that's the path we're on. >> rose: do you believe as xi jinping consolidates power he is
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becoming more aggressive in terms of china and china nationalism and china interest, and china as a global player? >> i have-- i knew you had jintao. i hi xi jinping. they are different leaders. i think it is fair to say that the jinping's situation is very different in terms of his leadership position. he ask a stronger and more un tear leader than either of his predecessors, therefore he is more emboldened politically at home. i think he is quite concerned and appropriately so about some of the economic and demographic trends in china. there is always a tendency to try to turn to foreign activities as a way of distracting from that.
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i think you see that tendency in chinese leadership. it has long been news in many countries. you see that tennessee there. so i see all those things. and that's one of the reasons that we see that strange in chinese strategic thinking being so distinct. and i can't say whether pts' growing or not. because there are factors that weigh against it am but we take it very seriously. and in the defense department, i'm ambiguous. i always say china is one the things that we are making military investments, military operational plans, building our alliances in partnerships with an eye to. even as russia is, even as north korea is, even as iran is. and then ice ill, of course as i've said. those are our principal fine military preoccupations of
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today. and we're making sure that on each one of those we have the right military path to go with our strategic path. and i'm confident of what we are doing in all five of those areas. >> rose: no question we have the strongest military in the world. >> exactly. and also we have tuned to doing those five things. the other thing that is very important and also has been an important preoccupation for me is making sure that the military of ten years, 20 years, 30 years from now is also the world's best. and we can't take that for granted. it's a competitive world, charlie, as you foa because you do a lot of discussions on this. it is a world in which technology is both changing constantly, advancing constantly, and not en-- not entirely american, certainly not entirely governmental there is a lot of global technology.
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when i started out my career, of course i'm a physicist. when i started out my career, most technology of consequence to military affairs arose in the united states and out of the defense department that is no longer true. there is technology of consequence to us. and so we need to have a different relationship. >> which explains why you have had a concerted effort to have a strong relationship with silicon valley and bring their best and brightest. >> rose: absolutely. >> to the pentagon. >> we build the bridges there. and also why i'm so intent on the generation of the future and connecting them with the military. an all-volunteer force. many people don't have parents or an uncle or a coach or a principal who served. and so i've been very intended upon connecting to the next generation, inspiring them with our mission. being flexible where we can, consistent with a profession of
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arms to understand that they're different from today's generation, and to try to be welcoming to their things like their technology friendliness. >> rose: speaking of all that. let me go to north korea. a relationship with china is good, is necessary to deal with north korea, most people say. >> st-- unfortunately t is not borne the fruit that we all hoped they haven't done-- . >> rose: even though it is in their interest. >> it is very much in their interest. this is is a little bit like some of the russian behavior. you can say what is in somebody else's interest. and i actually believe that. but they have not, that is the chinese, behaved in what i regard as chinese interests which is not having a-- a war or nuclear weapons on their immediate border. and they, you no he, the north koreans to us, all north korean
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children are taught that we're the enemy, the devil. so our ability to influence north korean thinking except through deterance is not great. therefore when it came to the diplomatic approach, the theory behind the so called six party talks in which china was a part is that they could use the historical and idea logical history that they have with northed korea, uniquely to try to reach the north korean leadership. they have now, that-- that has not borne freult. >> rose: everywhere i talk, including a week of exit conversations here in washington and new york, they remind me of how they have elevated the
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threat of north korea. >> well, yeah, we certainly do, let me put it this way, charlie, when north korea has always been, and i have been doing this for a long time, and i remember working for the very first time on the north korea warplane -- war plan in 1994. >> it was argued at one point that you were in favor of taking out their facilities. >> that was a different circumstances, a different time. but the-- we have stayed, and this has been important, and we have spent money and made careful plans to stay one step ahead of north korea in the sense that we have built missile defenses in expectation that they might develop missiles that are capable of longer and longer range, that's why you see us increasing the number and the technological sophistication of the missile defis-- defenses of our country and north america,
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that is where you see us building new defenses in south korea, in japan, in guam rrs giving them the saind same kind of defense systems that we have, state of the art defense systems. >> either operating them ourselves or in some cases. >> rose: including south yor-- korea which drives the north koreans crazy. >> >> rose: we are doing all of that, including with them, that is an appliance decision an alliance capability. and the south korea be-- koreans. so we have been staying one step ahead in both deterrent and defense. never forget, charlie, we have 28,500 troops on the korean pence insurance la-- peninsula and a major plan to do a major reinforcement of that, even, should war come. so we stand-- our slogan or the
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korean peninsula is fight tonight. and we don't want to do that, but we're ready to do that. so you've talked now about the counterisil campaign. you've talked about russia. you've talked about china. we haven't talked about iran yet. >> here is northed korea. in every case, we are making the investments, have the operational plans to deter and if it comes comes to a conflictn with respect to each of those very different contingencies but they're all out there. and that is a world that faces us. >> do they have, have they developed all the technology so that once they have the missile the size of a nuclear weapon to fit on a missile. >> i'm not going to say that because that is an intelligence judgement. but what i am telling you is that i in participation that
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that could occur and making sure that that is prepared. and then increase just in the last four years or so, in the last two years, increasing both the number and the so is fist-- sophistication of the missile defenses, of north america. so i-- it's not prud enterto wait and see if something happens or not. we are trying-- we are in the defense department staying one step ahead of it. and we are. >> why do you put iran, in the five challenges, where do you put it? >> well, i'm pleased that the nubbingly-- nuclear agreement has been implemented so far. >> and. >> and if it is implemented, it does verify to stop them from getting a nuclear weapon. however, it doesn't stop iranian
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blind activities in the region in general. it doesn't by itself take away all of iran's potential for aggression. >> rose: and it doesn't stop them from developing missiles, does it? >> no, and that's why there also, missile defense, but that's why we have forces, we have forces in the gulf for two principal reasons. first is to carry out the campaign to defense isil. and the other is to deter iranian aggression and counter align influence there and defend our friends and allies, starting of course with israel but not limited to israel. >> but as you know, and much better than i know, you know, a lot of those sunni arabs are very worried about iran. >> yeah, and justifiably so. >> rose: and they have worried in the past about american support as you know as well. and that is an ongoing diplomatic relationship.
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>> but it is more than a diplomat in relationship t is a military relationship as well. we have excellent military to military relations with the emiratei, the saudis, other gulf states. >> like qatar. >> a big base in qatar. >> yes, yes, absolutely. we do with turkey, we obviously do with israel. >> rose: so when you see the turks and russians cooperate and they're going back to syria, cooperating against isil t is said. >> it is said. >> we do not observe exactly that, charlie so you are getting a little ahead of what we actually see but with respect to the turks and the counterisil campaign if that is where you are headed, the, turkey has been s a member of the coalition t is a member of nato. we work well with them they allow us to use bases in turkey to conduct the counterisil campaign.
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they have been doing more every month for sernlg the time i've been secretary of defense, progressively more. we do have issues with turkey but we work through them very systemically. we've done that in syria. and we've done that in iraq. the strategic thing is working then. >> yes and our relationship on the ground, working with turkey military, but there is something that he with work on every day. >> these are complicated places. my north star is american interests. and i don't expect to make simplicity there but do i expect to-- i'm not-- i'm clear about u.s. interests. we're very clear about pursuing those interests. and with turkey we're very
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effective in pursuing our interests and respect with turkish interest. as always, they're not identical. but they overlap substantially. the overlap is quite substantial. with almost any country, you don't have an identity of interests and my job isn't to carry out anybody's national interests. but the united states. i know what that is. i'm quite clear about that. and it would be nice to solve everybody else's problem and every problem in the world but that's not job one for me, job one is to protect the american people and protect our interests. we know what they are and we can do that. >> i have heard you say and i have read your memo, your sort of exit memo. >> they call them exit memos. >> and you talk a lot about the
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things you have talked here but you have also talked about modernization and in terms of the quality of women and your commitment to them. it is extremely important. >> innovative in terms of. >> tok technology and people so that we maintain, we remain the best that is one of the things i'm so proud of in the defense department that it is a learning institution if is dem strus-- tremendously adaptable and over time it has been at the forefront of nearly every field of military art it is important that we remain so and so i spend a lot of my time making sure that we continue to, i call it thinking outside of five sided box of the pentagon. >> and making sure that we are
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constantly looking around for ways that we can do things differently and better that is actually quite con gene yal. in the military people tend to think it say big bureaucracy or hide bound and so forth. and there are aspects of it that are that way. but by and large it is a learning institution, so if we set a direction, my experience over 35 years as when we set a direction, our military will faster, better than any other military move into the future. that is important to me as, and must be to any secretary of defense as is geel dealing with the strategic circumstances of the day. i'm confident about what we are doing today. but i'm also think it's necessary and i'm confident about its institute to dam
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nature the, at he not a birth right, it's something we have to work out and we have to be competitive. we have to be creative. and we need consistent leadership and support in our country, and support by our people, not just budget tear support, but support from the troops. >> have i one last question on that, but i just want to go back to one issue, one country i forgot and wanted to bring it up because we have more troop there, that are engaged in battle, i think, than anywhere else. i assume that is afghanistan. >> uh-huh. >> rose: where are we? >> we have, i've been at this one for a long time as well. we have--ed i remember overall our approach there, chartie, is as always, first and fore most to protect our own interests. and make sure that attacks like 9/11 attacks never originate from their again. >> it's not a haven for those who want to-- exactly, no safe
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haven. our approach to that has been over now a number of years as you well know, and i worked very hard on this, to strengthen the capabilities of the afghan security forces. they have gotten stronger now, and stronger through two successive seasons, fighting seasons as they're called. they have held their own. we're now in the sort of winter cycle where they refresh, so also does the enemy, principle plee the tal i ban. but they are getting stronger and stronger in ef reway so that is pretty of the path that we're on. one of the things that i recommended to the president along with general dunford earlier this year, was that we keep more forces in afghanistan this coming year 2450es will
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enablers, himming people equip the afghan security forces because i thought that ime could do that, we have the expert tease and ka passionity to do it and it gave another treaks nuj to the afghan security forces even though they are doing well. a little expractice margin of security, this is the strategy, i'm if the going to deceive you, charlie. you know we have been at this for long. and our expectation is that we will be at this which is not substituting for the afghan forces any longer skins they now exist and have growing capability, and enabling them. not only we but everyone else who has had part of it since the beginning has committed to continuing that role.
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it's porntd we do that so we don't have a nest of terrorism in south asia it's also by the way, not bad to have a very willing and cooperative security partner in a dangerous part of the world. i never overlook that and we have friends and allies that are an enormous a set to our defenses. and having a cooperative partner in av tban stand has that upside. >> rose: as we leave this conversation, of all the things you are proud of and you have left america strong what is it around the corner that you want to say to all of us i'm worried about this and we have to be vigilant. >> well, we've discussed pretty much everything. and i have to say, charlie, i have tended to every thing i thought was necessary and part of the future. and i think we are on the path, both strategically today and to
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the improvements we need to know-- we need to make in the future. the only thing i would say is this requires persistent effort, particularly to stay ahead of our enemies. so there will be changes in technology. there will be changes in the strategic landscape. there will be changes in the way that our people think about their own future. we need a defense department that is todd gill. we have that today. that i have a lot of admiration in, and confidence in the innovativeness of the u.s. military. they have dealt with difficult situations in recent history. we have seen it. it has been tough but in each case we have climbed on top of
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our circumstances. that's the institution that i lead. i'm confident in the future, for that reason. i don't confidently predict the future because we have never successfully predicted the strategic futurement i know what we are doing today, so called five that we have talked about. but it is important also to continue to be todd gill and to be the best, that takes investment, it takes energy and it take takes creative thinking. >> and it takes the support of the pop liss, and citizenry and it takes the support of washington and in fact there have been people in the national security field who have said to me, bob gates being one of them. the biggest threat to national security comes from gridlock or the absence. >> gridlock has-- gridlock. >>-- especially as they effect
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defense. have been a serious problem now for eight consecutive years, really even longer than that. that has been a consequence of political gridlock in washington and there's no question about it. not withstanding all that, charlie, you know, for the troops for the terrific leaders that we have, for the innovators that we have, i think people should be very product of that. i'm proud of them. i'm very confident of them. but we could do better as a country by them. by supporting them and giving them rerelief from there th gridlock and instable that they don't deserve. >> thank you for coming. >> thanks for having me once again. >> an hour with secretary of defense ash carter, come january 20th, he will be leaving. he has done that before and he has come back before.
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thank you for joining us. see you next time. >> thank you, charlie. >> for more about ts program and earlier episodes visessity us online at pbs.org and charlie rose.com. captioning sponsored by rose communications captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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>> rose: funding for "charlie rose" has been provided by: >> and by bloomberg, a provider of multimedia news and information services worldwide. >> you're watching pbs.
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kacyra: it kind of was like the bang that set off the night. rogers: that is the funkiest restaurant. man: the honey walnut prawns will make your insides smile. klugman: more tortillas, please. khazar: what is comfort food if it isn't gluten and grease? man #3: i love crème brûlée. woman: the octopus should've been, like, quadropus, because it was really small. sbrocco: and you know that when you split something, all the calories evaporate, and then there's none. man: that's right, yeah.

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