tv House Foreign Affairs Committee on U.S. Arms Sales to Gulf Countries CSPAN June 14, 2019 3:44pm-6:17pm EDT
>> die look forward to running against them. >> tuesday, president donald trump holdses a rally in orlando, florida, lawning his run for a second term. watch live at 8 permanent on on c-span2, online at c-span.org, or listen live on the free c-span radio app. >> the trump administration recently approved the transfer of sensitive nuclear technology to saudi arabia. next a state department official taking questions about the decision and whether other u.s. armed sales to gulf countries are creating unstable in the region. congressman eliot engle chairs the foreign affairs committee. [inaudible] >> the committee will come to
order. without 0, all members will have five days to submit statements, materials and questions for the record, subject to length limitation and the rules. we immediate today to examine the fiasco surrounding the trump administration's decision to invoke emergency authority under the arms expert control act. and abuse of authority in my view and ram led to 8 billion in arms sales to gulf countries. we'll hear testimony from assistant secretary of state for plate political -- clarke cooper. thank you for appearing before us today. welcome to members of the and can the press and thank you to your friends on c-span who are broughting this important proceeding. before i recognize myself for opening stam i want to just say to the member is'll be heavy with the gavel because we want to get in as many people asking
questions as possible. so, the five minutes will be pretty hard and fast. instead of let it go for six or seven minutes. if ask people to please speak within the five-minute recognized period. let me say that the war in yemen and america's role it in have been a major focus of this committee since the start her to congress. i've made my views clear. while our gulf partners have legitimating security concerns, the coalition's war effort has been reckless. we have heard too many heart breaking reports about hops, school buses, weddings and funerals wiped out in a firey flash of destruction. the same time i'm also angry. i'm angry because once again the administration wants to cut congress out of the picture. out of the process. we are a coequal branch of government. and it's not simply the executive branch's decision to
disregard what congress is, and we have seen unfortunately too many times, time and time again. some of the weapons that cause the destruction are made in the united states. other weapons made in our country hey have end in the hand avid mill hill militias in yemen on the terrorist lives. a few of the reasons congress has voiced deep kearn but american policy on these matters and why offensive arms sales to gulf faced a rocky path forward when subjected to congressional review. let's be clear. congress' able to review arms exports is upheld by law and upheld by long-standing tradition. and n lying office these concerns in congress, did the administration negotiate a path forward? no. did they listen to members on both sides of the aisle who wanted greater assurance that american weapons would not be
used in the vlad over civilian? dithey'd pay the least amount of respect to a coequal branch of government and its legitimating and vital role? no. no, instead they employed an obscurity and rarely used provision of the law to declare a phony emergency, ram the sales through, and undercut congress' ability to carry out its oversight role. if there were a real emergency, if our security were under such an imminent threat, that the transfer of weapons was the only way to prevent a catastrophe, then we wouldn't be setting here today. would be a real catastrophe. but here is reality there is no emergency. do you hoe how i know? i know because a real emergency would require weapons that could be delivered immediately. if you need them right now, you want weapons that can be delivered immediately, not months or years from now as these do.
a real emergency would require weapons that have already been built and are relevant to whatever the immediate threat it. a real emergency would not justify building new factories and saudi arabia and the unite i arab emirates to manufacture weapons built to the united states for years and years. a real emergency would not be followed by our defense secretary tell us the threat has now diminished. again, there is no emergency. it's phony. it's made up. and it's an abuse of the law once again, attempting to cut congress out of the whole picture. this is not a dictatorship. we don't rule this country by fiat. again we are coequal branch of government. in school you lander the checks and balances. congress is a coequal branch of government. we are not going to permit this to go by without a whimper. just a few days before the
administration notified congress about the so-called emergency, we got a briefing on the threat that iran poses in the region. i have no doubt that iran is a threat to the united states, to our interests and our allies and partners, it's the world's most prolific state sponsor of terrorism. its activities in the gulf could paralyze economy and air travel. tehran provided the houthis with dangerous weapons and the houthis have avoided negotiations to end the conflict and blocked in the astance to help alleviate the world residents worst humanitarian catastrophe. this is nothing new. cannot talk about the detail 0 the briefing we received but suffice to say, we did not hear a single word about an emergency or a plan to move ahead with this sale. for this major fiasco the administration quietly let us know on a friday afternoon, before a holiday weekend. it's really slap in the face. congress is going to have to give itself stronger tools
before the administration just starts ignoring us completely. i've been working with ranking member mccall on legislation to make sure future arms sales only go forward if the country buying those weapons meetes certain conditions. also have to strongly consider changing the arms export control act's emergency provision which the administration again has flagrantly abused in this case, and we're looking at every possible avenue stop the transits before that go forward under this phony justification. including measures that members of the committee will introduce later today. but for now i'd like some answers. like no know but the process that led to this outrageous decision. i'd like to know who was involved, who thought it was good idea to conjure up an knowledge in in and cut an entire branch of the federal government out of the conversation and we'll get to those questions and others,
mr. assistant secretary, following your opening statement. i yield to my ranking member, mr. mccall of texas. >> thank you, mr. champ let he me say what a honor it was to attend the normandy ceremony with you this past weekend. make no mistake, iranian wreck anytimes are the number one state sponsor of terror in the world today. they have a brutal history of american bloodshed. from marine barrackses bombing in lebanon in 1983 to the death of 600 u.s. members service members from 2003 to 201. continue to hold american hostages and plot against our allies in europe. iran's destablizing behavior in the middle east thens the region and is a growing threat to the security of the united states. our military and our citizens. just last week marine general
frank mckenzie, the top military commander in the region, warned about attacks by iran its forward proxy, staying i think the threat is imminent. allies in the region face this menace every day. i fully support the efforts of saudi arabia and the united arab emirates to defense. the -- defendant thens it against iran and training, he support the evident to overthrow a legitimate u.n. backed government in iran by the houthi rebels. the rebels launch missiles and armed drones into saudi arabia. but i'm also troubled by the numerous civilian deaths in this war, including from coalition air strikes. i firmly believe we can support our strategic partners while also insisting they broad the war more responsibly and for this reason i'm working with
chairman engel on legislation conditioning future armed sale weapons the goal of helping stop civilian deaths. we're here today because the state department certified to congress that the iran threat stutzman an emergency. requireing the immediate provision of certain defense systems of saudi arabia, the ua and jordan. the rarely used emergency authority bypassed article 1, congressional review, of the sales. the founding fathers put article 1 first, which represents the american people before article 2 in the constitution, and they did that for a reason. there have been times when international emergencies required expedited sales, president trump, george h.w. bush using the emergency authority in the immediate wake of the iraqi invasion of kuwait. president reagan made the
determine during the iran-iraq war. critical weapons were delivered very quickly during hot wars. but as i said last month the recent use of this emergency authority in my judgment, was unfortunate. some sale noise be ready for delivery for over a year. would have preferred to adhere to the formal statutory 30-day congressional review process toed and do it the 22 arms sales where a resolution of disapproval process could have been an option. in fact i had a very good conversation with ambassador bolton, about a week or two before the decision was made. discussed the legislation, the chairman and i were working on and i thought things were going in the correct and proper direction. i do share the administration's frustration that some of these informal holds or these arms sales for over a year was a
little too long. in your written statement you have said these arms sales are necessary to ensure the united states remains a credible supplier of choice for our partners, rather than russia and china. and i agree with that. last week it was reported that saudi arabia, however, has been buying ballistic missiles from china and while we're not discussing ballistic missile technology today it's difficult our allies are depending their defense relationships with oured a veer series like china. assistant secretary cooper, i want to thank you for your service to our country in so many ways, some ways we can't discuss here in public. i look forward to hearing you view oles the threat, the decision making process and designating this an emergency and the details on the 22 weapons sales and with that, mr. chairman, i yield back.
>> thank you. i want to thank the gentleman from texas, ranking member. with is this mr. r. clarke keep, assistant secretary of state for political military affairs. mr. assistant secretary, thank you for coming. i recognize you for five minutes to summarize your testimony and and everything will in the record including your written testimony. >> yes, the floor is yours. >> chairman engel, ranking member mccall, members, in recent days, mutual shipping has been attracted by providing a deterrent against hostile actions this transfer throws risk of a broader conflict. the determination reflects the united states' grave concern with the growing escalation in the gulf and its implication for the security of our friends in the region.
these words could precisely describe the context of the recent emergency certification this hearing has been convened to discuss but they're actually from a state department statement from 1984. then, as now, iran's revelation near gunfight threatened international ship neglect gulf some supported attacks on american interests in the region. resulting in the dealts of 241 american service members in beirut. then, as now, our partners required the reassurance provided by an american demonstration of resolve, and then as now, the administration took steps to deter war, not to bring it closer. in his recent sea secretary tom payow supporting our partners in this current crisis. these capabilities include aircraft support, munitions,
logistic services, unmanned intelligence, surveillance and recognizance platforms, training, and advisory services. none of these constitution introductions of fundamentally new capables to he region, none alter the military balance of power. none are a nate or category that congress has not previously approved for these particular partners. the secretary's decision to exercise his statutory third under arms export controlling a reflect the concern threat from iran but before speaking to that i would like to describe the broader context. first, in today's world our partnerships are more vital north less. so we must ensure or partners they have the capabilities, the staples, the communications, the intelligence, and the training to play their picker role in maintaining the stability and surety of their regions. our adversaries recognize the
importance of partnerships and have adopted purposeful tracks of trying to disrupt them at all levels, including in terms of our security cooperation, for instance, by seeking to replace us as has been noted as suppliers of choice. congress is very much aware of this which is why you passed the enact 2017. -- act in 2017. at the same time we deeply appreciate the particular considerations that relate to arms tran fers. many members, many americans, are concerned about the use of the armses be provide oversea including the can text of theemn self war. ...
is the premium we place on ensuring that our capabilities are not contributing to gross violations of human rights . we have worked with the saudi led coalition of the course of this operation to reduce the occurrence of civilian casualties. our support in this regard as ranged from the provision of training on targeting and the supply of more precise in missions to mentoring and advising the coalition on best practices, lessons learned, integrating complex data that is designed to reduce civilian casualties. we've also provided higherand legal training on the law of armed conflict and have directly and regularly engaged both military and political leadership on this topic .
this is the context. the need to remain engaged partners, to ensure we remain their primary security partner, to make clear that we support our partners in the defense of their relatives and the security of their regions and to deter our shared adversaries from disrupting those objectives. this mention of adversaries links me back to emergencies decided by the secretary in his certification. iran and its maligned activity. as secretary pompeo stated publicly and secretary shanahan briefed the congress, we have to increased threat streams from iran relating both to us and partner equities in the region. these troubling and ask a tory indications and warnings from the iranian regime have prompted a increased us force posture in the region. the iran back huthi's target in the emirates and the saudi led coalition in yemen. access as ambassador bolton described, iranian attacks on shipping off the coast of the
united arab emirates, unmanned aerial vehicle attacks on pumping stations of the saudi east-west pipeline and the rockets fired into a park just a kilometer from our us enmity embassy in baghdad afew days after that and just today, today , a huthi cruise missile fell on the arrival swale of the ad is about the airportinjuring 26 civilians . these provocative actions mark a new evolution in the threat ran coaches for the region, to our partners and our own national security including the security of hundreds of thousands of americans and their families who live and work in the gulf states. it is this situation, this significant increase in both the intelligence of threat streams and clear provocative and damaging actions taken by iran's government that the secretary did determine a constituted an emergency. it is this confluence of strategic priorities and
vitality of our bilateral relationships that urgent regional threat that drove him to make the certification. before closing, i would like to make one further point. in the process of his confirmation and my own, the secretary and i each provided congress with a congressional review process. this commitment stands. i value deeply congress's role in the role of the armchair process, take pride in the depth of the detail and working relationship we have with the committees in the course of this process and do not view the secretary certification as setting aside this process. indeed, by carving out a certain set of cases in the context of the statutory authority longgranted by congress , secretaries actions is an affirmation of the value we place on our engagement with you on arms transfers and broader security assistance issues.
mister chairman, in 1984, ambassador michael our massage explained president reagan's emergency certification to congress in these words : quote, our decisions were a clear response to an escalating emergency which threatened saudi america and the goal. they satisfied a clear military need. in addition we sense a political signal both reassurance anddeterrence . it was a measured response which promotes regional stability and security. mister chairman, mister ranking members, the political signal of reassurance and deterrence, a measured response which promotes regional stability and security. these are the purposes for which president reagan certified in emergency 1984 and they are the purposes for which secretary pompeo invoked the same authority two weeks ago thank you and i look forward
to your questions . >> thank you for your testimony. i now recognize the members for five minutes each. all time yielded for the purpose of questioning our witness and i'll start by recognizing myself . mister secretary, saudi arabia is an ally and they have legitimate security concerns. iran is not an ally, they are a leading state sponsor of terrorism and they have all kinds of malign intentions but is not an excuse to put congress out of the picture and not an excuse to say we know better and therefore congress is superfluous or irrelevant. it is really a bad policy to act like that and the huthis's are bad. they threaten saudi arabia's civilians but it doesn't mean we get the saudi's a blank check. it doesn't mean we look the other way when they drop bombs on school buses. there has to be responsibility here and i just do not understand the
administration decision to totally cut congress out of the process when we have a process that works and i really just hope this doesn't happen again. the state department has cited an increase in iranian threats as a major justification for invoking the arms-control act emergency power provisions as i've long believed that iran remains the greatest threat to the region. but this appears to be a convenient way to get these weapons sales out the door without consulting congress so let's discuss the timing of these sales. when was the decision made to move forward with the sales under emergency authority? was it before may 4 when the white house announced the deployment of the carrier strike group to the north? the new york times reported last night this decision was made in the spring rain that quote, mister pompeo told state department officials to find a way to push through
the arms sales, unquote so which came first? the arms sales or the threat? then secretary shanahan indicated the arabian had diminished. does this mean the emergency no longer exists? i understand some of these items on the emergency list will take months if not a year or more to produce. let me ask you this, what kind of emergency response in months or years circumstances you claim exist right now. and if the iranian threat were to be reduced in some way when you move ahead with these transfers read these are all important questions i hope you can summarize as it makes me more dubious in fact . believing that the administration for some reason has decided not to partner with the congress in these important issues. and i really think that in the future, the administration should change its attitude and work with congress as working with the american people, we're all here to serve the same
country and the same people and we should not be cut out of the process and treated like enemies. i'd like you to comment on anything i said. >> thank you mister chairman, i'll start congress and our communications. as i stated in my testimony, we value that engagement . and what the return and we have returned to normal consultative process on arms transfers and sales. this is an emergency, this is all one time as the secretary stated . and i would note that the sales that were included in the emergency declaration dedication through the consultative process and review. with congress there's nothing you 22 sales . which does leave your point about the release of those. on the dcs or direct commercial sales, there are immediacy of receivable of shipment and that sense. but as an emergency on timing, yes.
the process contribute to the conditions that necessitated an emergency. so in some of these cases you're right, there's going to be a tail or a logistical latency on them. or logistical latency have been built because of the protracted process but again, consultation, review period with congress, that is desirous for all parties. for not only the legislative branch but the executive branch: it makes our transfers stronger and provides accountability to the partners in the receipt of that. as for the timing of the emergency declaration, similar to the timing of the release on imposition of sanctions, the emergency declaration of that certification is in the secretary toolkit. the tool of diplomatic deterrence or potential diplomatic deterrence . to say that it was preconceived is like saying that we're returning
sanctions being issued to particular partners. partners right now we are looking at that we are reviewing potential imposition of sanctions. and in this case, because of the object of the threat streams that were being reported, risking not only equities but persons made it more of a priority. again, i'd be happy to talk more in a closed forum about the threat streams, but it's talking about timing, kind certainly was of the essence in regards to sending a message, three audiences in that message. one, being tehran. sending a message of deterrence to tehran . other one, not mutually exclusive is sending a message to our partners to reassure them that we are with them shoulder to shoulder, that we do value their sovereignty, we do value their role in the greater region that they play to protect our interest and equity and finally one that's been touched upon already was
rp adversaries, our national security strategy is transparent . so transparent that our adversaries see it as a way to also communicate in a fashion where they see opportunity. and what we don't want to do is we do not want to create conditions that would provide opportunity for our near your adversaries we're certainly a sheared aspect of on this declaration. the primary one being mister chairman was the immediacy of the streams thatwere coming . and know thatthe threat has not abated . >>. mister mccall. >> we hope this is a one-time exception. i think there is a process . this emergency was declared. there's an informal notification and a formal notification . typically, when you start the informal process is an opportunity tonegotiate and work things out .
usually that takes place within a matter of a month or two and some of these holds have been in place for over a year so in some respects i understand the frustration with the state department. having said that, getting the classified briefing, top or in general calling on his proxies to prepare for war in our type commander in the region , calling at it, can you tell me what impact the authorization of these sales by the secretary had on these threats? >> in an open forum like this i can tell you that there has been a postured response again, emergency declaration is just as i mentioned the tool, if not the only tool our government has there was a citation earlier this morning about our forced posture in the region and also is a tool. the front half of it but it sends a clear message to tehran. but equally important we are reassuring our partner that
we not abandon them or that we left them to carry the full load of responsibility in the region. >> you think these precision guided weapons that have been now set, that would help prevent some of this collateraldamage we are seeing . >> precise targeting would mitigate civilian casualties. it's not just the position weapons, it also comes with the training. one thing the person been involved in the informal review process and not just precision guided weapons but any platform will what makes this a preferred partner not just in the gulf region globally is we don't just provide ammunition, we don't just provide a platform, we provide a partnership and the partnership comes with that along tail on training capacity building . getting our partners to not only the system but actually operate in a way that we would find it acceptable by
our standards by usg standards. when i say training, it also is a matter of understanding the application of these things .it includes teaching them about the law of armed conflict. it also helps them better understand what would be considered. [indiscernable] for the targeting process so it's not just a matter of conveyance of ammunition. >> this to the emergency issue. out of the 22 sales, i don't know if you can answer this on the top of your head but only were ready to deliver in less than 60 days or have already been delivered in the year. >> thank you, based on the quick little one-on-one, foreign military sales and we're doing the letters offer , there is a process there. can take 20 to 30 days. the red commercial sales however to your point on the immediacy and the point the chairman raised as well to paraphrase a colloquialism, our dod colleagues refer to, pushing munitions is happening now. and actually, it's happened prior to this hearing. >> many would take over a
year or two to deliver? >> it depends on if it's not been built or manufactured. but if anything is on what's called off the shelf, it's already moving. >> finally, how many have not even been built yet? >> i would have to follow up on that in detail. part of the difference is it's a direct commercial sale, we don't have state department hasn't doesn't haverestriction on a commercial export . it's on the cases we have direct jurisdiction. >> my last point is the chairman and i are working on legislation as we had prior to this announcement to authorize the sales. we understand the policy of arming the saudi and the threat that iran poses and the alliance between the saudi's in israel and we understand the huthis proxy in yemen as a threat to saudi and israel and the region and
the united states. we just have an issue with the process and we think consulting with congress is always a better route. iunderstand in this case there's an emergency . we are continuing our work in good faith on legislation to address future sales and we hope we can work with the state department on this legislation and i talked to senator rich yesterday about this as well.something i think would be practical common sense that in past house senate andbe signed into law and with that mister chairman i yelled back . >> thank you, mister sherman. >> i do agree with you that the huthi are evil and supported by iran but at the same time you tell us with more accurate targeting technology, saudi arabia will hit fewer hospitals. that assumes they're not
trying to hit hospitals. i hope your assumption is correct. you tell us you want to send a message with this to our adversaries, to your adversaries. it appears as if your adversary is congress and the message is loud and clear. you will stretch every statute beyond its breaking point in order to make congress irrelevant to the decision-making process. arms nails you're talking about are controversial. there is significant opposition in congress and rather than confront that, you go around. and so the issue is not what is our foreign policy but whether we protect and defend the constitution of the united states . we've heard some criticism from both sides of the aisle on this. the fact of the matter is if congress were united, wecould stop this . we could go right now to those on the floor and demand that the rule be changed and we make an order and protect
an amendment to the foreign ops appropriations bill pending on the florida day. requiring and we could require that any transfer of weapons to saudi arabia, the emirates get an affirmative vote by congress. we could minimum just repudiate this phony declaration of emergency. and so i'll yield to any republican member that wants to join in that effort. >> as you see, congress is divided, you have defeated your enemy. the, now this declaration of emergency is bogus. the court may very well decide that in a few years and if this one isn't, you can imagine at some future time , there would be a bogus declaration. is there any personal
liability that anybody in the executive branch faces if they just decide to ignore the arms export control act or, with absurd definitions designed to claim to be adhering to it when a court would determine that they have violated mark and you basically do anything you want as long as you can say it with a straight face as a practical matter or do you base, do you or anyone else in the inefficient face any any civil or criminal liability? >> please let me answer that. thank you mister chairman. the short answer is no, weare in compliance with statute . >> let's say in some future decision were not in compliance with statute because when you face any liability or can you violate the statute with impunity should you or your successor to do so? >> i'm not aware of anybody regardless of branchof government statute .
>> what is the outcome if some successor of yours decides to violate the statute? >> i'm going to focus on -- >> i would hope you would have legal advice on this area because as extreme as this ministration is, quite possible court would determine that you. on the far . you violated the law, that there is not a good faith emergency and that those involved are deliberately intentionallyviolating the arms export control . >> that possible compliance with the arms export. >> you think you're compliant, many of us do not and who knows what the determination of some future tribunal or cohort would be. we have sworn very far in the direction of presidential power. so the question here, it appears as if you've determined the emergency is that congress won't agree with you.
>> no sir. >> you told us what you wanted to do, we didn't approve so youdeclared an emergency . if congress had promptly agreed with your plans, would there be an emergency? >> yes, so an emergency are conditions space and i'm glad that question congressman sherman, the questions we discussed here today and we can discuss further in another forum not only were the streams emanating from tehran, they were the conditions, the readiness of our partners. assuring our partners that we stand with them and then there are also the conditions of looking at near your adversaries. looking for -- >> you decided whatever policy you want to carry out must be carried out in anything thatprevents you from doing itfor a short time constitute an emergency, please read the constitution . ideal back . >> i've been trying to support the constitution for over 20 years in different capacities in my career and congress isa partner or partners with congress .
we will work with congress on refuse. >> thank you mister chairman, mister terrence. >> and the secretary cooper for being here. if you can generalize, how long have the sales and in the works mark. >> thank you congressman. not each sale but many number of sales have gone up to 18 months. it's been raised here that this is where we get into partners being concerned. not surprising, engagements not only with members of congress but in bilateral discourse, there's been concern about our ability to be standing shoulder to shoulder with partners carrying a number of equities or us in the region. >> during the month or karate months, has congress been made aware of the administrations intent to make the sales? >> yes, in fact going back to the process writ large, the informal review process includes a lengthy consultation.
the number of members already cited the normal turnaround time nasal or nonlegal partner could be anywhere from 20 to 30 day usually when issues may be flagged or identified by either congress that we are to address. why we have training time and why it's done in a fashion that is just between the department of congress is because these are issues that need to be resolved inside the usg, inside us government so we are not exposing our partners to our own internal scrutiny but morally, the up to 30 days. in these cases we are reaching months if not close to two years. >> 18 months in longer than 30days. if you know, how long ago did senator menendez subject ? >> some of these cases go back over 18 months. >> there's the fact that senator menendez objected to a certain extent to the fact that you ministration is complying with the process
because if you were complying with the process, senator menendezwouldn't have had the opportunity to object . >> and to that point, we have to the emergency declaration, we returned immediately that process so there are cases that are currently under informal review right now before congress right after the declaration so the process has not stopped, essentially.the declaration was a highlight of 22 particular cases but the process of informal review, the review notification never stop. >> did you mister secretary cooper received a request from this to me to conduct a classified briefing regarding the sales and the particular circumstances surrounding the sales from a private perspective prior to that we would have that briefing prior to this hearing? >> i know that we had offered a classified briefing, the
offer still stands really unhappy come back either in a closed hearing or a briefing. we were not to secure one again, happy if there's interest, happy to provide that. there is threat stream data that is worth noting. there were citation of some of that five central command, general mckinsey. but in an open forum, we can't -- >> you may offer but the committee requests classified briefing regarding the actions precipitating the emergency declaration regarding these arms sales prior to this hearing. >> no sir, not that i'm aware of. >> would you say that this move is based on new intelligence received regarding iran in particular? >> short answer is yes. a little bit more to that is their work involving brett streams. one thing we can note is that there's always a persistent
threat. several members have noted that here today, it's not going to abate. not just direct threats but through proxies outside of the region threats to our equity outside the region . but what is new was the particular uptick in the threat posture. >> thank you secretary cooper and i for one if i have the authority to do so request a classified briefing at your convenience and availability regarding the action precipitating the sales and if no one else wants to attend, i'll be happy to sit down with you myself and do that so i like to work that out with your schedule. i want to remind all my colleagues we're here for the united states of america, for security of the united states of america and remind my colleagues on the other side of the aisle that when i brought up the fact that the irg c was driving around in m1 tax, american-made m1 text, no one here seemed to have a problem with that during the lastadministration . when the last administration
set a task when about enemy of the united states, nobody on the other side of the aisle and to have a problem with that and when the last administration crafted the gc poa to exclude congress, nobody on the other side to have a problem with that process either. >> i just want to quote my dear mother used to tell me two wrongs don't make a right . let me call on mister meeks. >> thank you mister chairman. >> mister secretary, when one thing that i think that all members of congress to agree upon, that man is a bad actor. and that iran has done things and continues to do things that the region.
one thing i think some members also know, maybe not everyone articulated, that saudi arabia also doesnot have clean hands . and they too times malign the region. and they too because when i think about lobbyist, that's a threat to us. when i think about who were in those planes i come from new york that constructed the world tradecenter , they were saudi arabians. when i think about the tragedy that continues to take place in yemen. and the killing of innocent people. in that regard.
i believe is our responsibility to also pull them in check. i think that it is important that when you see the killing of an american colonist, that we should say something and do something in that regard. now, it seems to me that the administration realizes that also because the administration, i just saw the president yesterday talk about a beautiful letter that he received from kim jong un. kim jong un doesn't send beautiful letters when we see him killing his own people are starting his own people and has similar crisis of continuing to take place in arabia. so the concern that members of congress have had. was about how partners were using the weapons that they
received. and how that was fueling the conflict in yemen. and creating the worst unitarian catastrophe possibly in the world. these concerns still have not disappeared. the administration did not come to congress to ask how to move forward with these sales and did not make any policy changes to assuage our concerns. administration could have said the sales to congress under the regular notification period. allowing congress to disapprove, 30 days to disapprove. three days prior to the emergency declaration, there was a classified meeting.
and the secretary was there. he did not mention at all that there was an emergency situation. yet just three days later, all of a sudden, there was an emergency situation . it seems evident that was utilized to get around congress. because some in congress do want to hold everyone accountable for their actions and to make sure that we are setting astandard . my concern and the question when i look at the number of quibbles, 18,000 motor balls that may end up in the hands of nemesis in yemen. maybe use against civilians. so one question to you is why in the world would a regime need 15,000 motor bombs.
in the scenario that we're talking about. >> thank you congressman meeks. let's start with the munitions and weapons. as cited in my testimony we have partners that are under direct threat. they're not just carrying our equities or our water, we just had an attack by the huthi on a saudi arabia civilian international airport is not just a matter of defense, the matter of posture in yemen. as you noted, the huthi's are and iran sponsor so this is just a matter of a civil war. this is addressing a greater threat. after the screens, it is ever evolving. so yes, congress was reached on the threats by date, by defense and yes, there was a constant assessment process taking place before that briefing, after that
briefing, eventoday , the intelligence community with the executive branch monitors that brett or changes in posture. so it didn't necessitate the emergency declaration. and where would you on accountability. holding a partner accountable, any partner doesn't preclude us from working with a partner. if anything, the detaching ourselves from a partner, removing ourselves from our partner risk injuring that accountability . so no, i think a security cooperation status with a partner doesn't mean we don't hold them to account on human rights. it doesn't mean we don't hold them to account on rule of law. it doesn't mean we don't hold them to account on civil society. >> thank you mister meeks, mister yellow. >> secretary cooper, thank you for being here. the questions been raised about why ministration this route versus the normal and i and covered.
i realize you may not be able to say and you statedthat you can't say much in this setting. asked the chairman to hold the classified briefing that this committee . the chairman would do that, decide what mister perry said because there's confusion and if we are not united as a government, shows confusion and weakness to any adversary we may have and i think the best thing ministration can do is workto get all of us on board . because i question some of it to and i want to support the administration but without having a skin type of breathing, what we have over there at the capitol visitors center is not real in-depth, so i asked the chairman to hold that as soon as possible so that we can be on the same side of this . we certainly learned that when an administration bypasses congress like the obama administration did with the gc poa and passed over $1 billion to moran,
consequences of that take a long time to go back and correct and we don't want to make thatmistake . we've heard reports of arms going into the hands of people we don't want them to and what guarantees do we have that this equipment will get into the hands of radical islamic terrorists like the five or six different crisis terrorist groups that are in that region? >> thank you congressman and yes, i'd reaffirmed that i'd be happy to come back to have a further conversation on the classified setting. as to the points on the delivery of systems and weapons to partners, this is part of our relationship in a bilateral sense of the advocacy and the credibility of what they are applying, where there applying and who
has actual command and control of whatever weapon or system is in place. that is constantly part of the program. earlier mention that when we provide missions, or an arms transfer, just stop at the transfer. it does come with a longer tail, not just on providing capability and sustainment but also accountability as well. so it's not limited to just provision of a good. there's an accountability affect there. this is actually art of the portfolio in my part of the department.is when we actually do follow up in some cases, we do precondition future transfers based on their ability to account for munitions or arms. >> let me interrupt there because i got reports of the radical islamic terrorists having path that went to saudi arabia. we need better safeguards and
i guess a more direct question is what information you requested from saudi and the me and jordan about how the defense articles transferred as part of these sales will be used for that we have a check and balance because we suffer the consequences of that. if you kill one radical terrorist, 20 get born out of that. and we're the ones that our name is on that ammunition and they know it. >> thank you, it is incumbent upon us from a nonproliferation aspect, a protection, a command and control of those elements, both arms, those munitions. after talking about certain aspects of the bilateral sense i'd like to say that for when we're together in a non-open forum and i would like to add that on the man has issue, members may or may not know that there is an interagency task force on the tracking of the decommissioning of knowing where they are, that
interagency task force actually is house not only the department of state but within my part of the department we do have jurisdiction on that specifically from the interagency standpoint and i'd be happy to talk about that further. >> one more important question, these sales to israel's qualitative military edge and has israel express any concerns about the sales? >> i consult you on the sale, not only the sales, every sale to an enemy is part of the analytical review process . i don't want to talk in detail about our bilateral communications and an open forum but with every sale as you mentioned, qnb is an assessment factor. >> thank you for your timeand your service . >> thank you mister yellow, mister series. >> secretary cooper, thank you for being here. following up on the concerns of the transfer of arms, that we make sure it doesn't wind up in the wrong hands, i think this is why the process of going through congress and
making sure that we are part is important. because of the end of the day when these arms are found with al qaeda like they were in the past, they're going to come to us and say you didn't supervise this, you didn't keep an eye on this . you have to answer the public . because they know thatthere is a process by which we approve these arms sales . so at the end, the administration likes the bypass congress and then i go back to my district and i have to answer why do they think that it's important for them to just go about doing business without the approval of congress? >> one of the most important things in this country is the fact that we have extended balances . so you know, let's get with it. let's go back and tell them that we are part of this country. and the other issue that i have, are they running out of ammunition? are they running out of arms,
the sallies that we have to do this in an emergency? you know -- >> after talking about particular readiness and capacity posture, i do not want to talk about that in an open forum but what i can say in an open forum is that reassurance we provided to not just saudi arabia but the other golf partners in the emergency declaration was not just a message. there was a material aspect but as you particular readiness and capacity issues on any bilateral partner, we would not want to have an open forum and i'm with you on the relationship of congress. this is why i emphasized in my testimony the value of having the review process. all these cases have been under congressional review for quite some time. it doesn't preclude any
review of any future cases and we did as soon as the one-time declaration was issued by secretary pompeo returned to the normal review consultative process of congress, >> i always get a kick out of these last five briefings because it was supposed to be classified the type of arms that we are selling to the saudi's. i mean, i think everybody in the world knows as a list of what's going there. so how classified do you do that when everybody seems to have a list of what type of arms they're getting? >> the sale, the transparency aspect is not classified. what is classified is we talked about the partners capacity of readiness, we would not want an adversary to know the strengths or weaknesses of any of our partners . >> well secretary, all i can say is keep us informed. it seems to be that this
administration has a habit of just doing things without informing or not even turning information over to congress that we need to make our decisions. it seems that we have to constantly go to court. some of the other committees haveto go to court to get information like pulling teeth from this administration, information that belongs to us so we can make our decision . i know you don't have an answer for that. >> i do. all the information as you mentioned, there is no secret about the cases here because we do operate in a transparent fashion so the case has been under congressional review, in some cases almost 2 years. i don't know how more consultative we can be in that sense. this is what probably contributed to the secretary's decision point. the primary one being the uptick in the print streams but the process has been in
place. we value the process, we're not walking away fromthe process but in this particular case, an emergency necessitated a declaration move forward . >> and we all get the fact that iran is a bad actor. and we all understand, at least i understand how important it is to make sure that israel , all right, not be overpowered by iran and its minions. it's so important, thank you. >> that you mister series, mrs. wagner. >> thank you mister chairman. thank you secretary cooper or your time and service and also at the beginning when we were casually talking, your offer to bring this committee together in a closed and classified setting so i appreciate that very much and i think it would do much good, because i'm much agree with my friends across the aisle and colleagues on the side of the aisle that often
times, what happens over the cdc is inane. so while i understand the strategic imperative to reassure regional partners standing against an aggressive, i am thinking is seeking to better understand the ministrations decision to sidestep normal processes, especially getting ongoing reports that frankly of saudi human rights abuses, very important to me. russia remains the largest arms supplier to the strategically important asia-pacific region. how do the pending arms sales to partners in the middle east long-term efforts to convince asia-pacific countries to buy american. >> thank you congresswoman wagner. i came back from south asia and there was honest if not difficult conversation with partners about their current status.
they're wanting to have a more the. relationship with the united states however. they needed to find ways to operate some legacy requirements or legacy equipment from say, russia. earlier in this hearing i referenced in my testimony sanctions. that is a tool. that is a tool that, as provided the administration. it is certainly a tool available in any of our partnerships. again, being an open forum i don't want to go into detail where we're looking for that but it is certainly something that having as a tool, factors in our discussions and negotiations bilaterally. >> you want them to know that you were there and having a discussion and i look forward to perhaps more detail in that regard. so as you mentioned in your testimony, none of the sales would alter the military
talents of power in the region, why are emergency procedures necessary? >> again, as noted, these were not new sales, we're not using new technology, new capabilities . what made an emergency was a confluence of these conditions. when one looks at the conditions not just on where our partners are or where they assess we are, there was the immediacy of the print streams elevating iran so the direct threats not only to our interests but to our partners as well. couple that with being able to reassure our partners that we are still with them and also adds a layer also referred to the earlier of sending a message you are near. adversaries do not take advantage of the current posture in the region. we are standing with our partners. >> doctor cooper, you explained in your testimony that china and russia are i
believe you call them secondary audiences for notification. can you explain how the emergency notification advantages the united states and the united states competition with russia and china? >> thank you. russia, china are extremely aggressive in their efficacy for sale, pushing their arms andmunitions to anybody . they usually do it a cutprice, cut rate. they certainly don't do it in a transparent fashion the way we do it. it is unique that the united states arms transfer process by statute and by policy is done in such a transparent fashion not only for our accountability to taxpayer but also our accountability partner who we're investing in. we also as i mentioned how long the support with our
sales. that is not replicated by are near. adversaries. we provide not just training sustainment, where with them along the way. and it's important to factor in and that training and sustainment is inclusiveof human rights , rule of arms conflict, making sure our partners are using the systems in a way that we would find appropriate forum our standpoint. >> setting that message to your adversaries that they do not take advantage of the situation in a particular conflict area is by no means think that we're stepping away from a partner who we're working with who is not only protecting their sovereignty in theirregion , their equity on our behalf, on behalf of american national security. >> thank you for your time and your service, my time has expired and i go back and look forward to our further discussion. >> thank you mrs. wagner, mister keating. >> thank youfor being here , secretary cooper and thank you for your service to the country. >> you said earlier that you want to make sure that the
actions that the administration like this that you want to make sure the transfer of your stronger. you want to make sure that we're making sure our partnerships are vital. what about a partnership with congress? it's required under the constitution. the partnership that is there, it's an equal level of government. and how can it be perceived as stronger statement because of the actions that we're taking mighty ministration. for so-called emergency when next week, the senate is going to in 22 resolutions of disapproval and vote against it. it would only take a president's veto to overcome this. and you're here today in front of this committee asking questions that should have been asked and answered before this was done. that possibly making our country look stronger when this action divides our
country? not only internally but in the eyes of all those, allies and not internationally. how can that possibly be stronger -mark. >> thank you congressman keating. actually, having this hearing is stronger. our open society, our discourse is the message -- i hate to interrupt, my time is limited but it's not stronger when it happens afterwards. it's not stronger. you've been assistant secretary of political military affairs so you have some knowledge of the crafting of this memorandum of justification, is that correct? >> that is correct. >> was jared kushner part of that? was he at any meeting? >> i am not going to talk about anything pre-decision but this is a secretary of state policy decision.
>> excuse me, you want it both ways. you're not going to talk about anything pre-decision and you can't talk about anything after the decision. we are here to ask questions about the pre-decision so how can you sit here and say you're not going to comment your dismissing us. >> i'm not sore . >> you're saying we're not going to talk aboutit . in any way, indirectly or directly, jared kushner involved in any discussions on this? was he involved when there was a saudi summit? where there discussions on this? was jared kushner and you're in a position to know in any way involved in this whatsoever -mark. >> what i can tell you i know is mister kushnerdoesn't have an interagency role in the review of these cases . these cases were done in the interagency process that we discussed earlier. >> this is a case in the emergency declaration. >> what about the overall issue.of providing arms to the saudi's? was jerichoinvolved in that?
don't you find it . >> so narrowly. >> i'm not defining it narrowly, i'm talking about the emergency declaration. conditions and i talk to you about the conditions. >> i want you to answer my question. it's pretty simple. you were involved in august, was very kushner involved. how do not answer that? >> not in the emergency declaration . >> in discussions with the sunis not our sales . >> i see what you're asking. on bilateral communications fromambassador, country team , milton relationships, there are a number of minds of communication with our partners. . >> includes government. >> was involved?>> not in the emergency declaration. >> and you're not answering the question, how is that it's a question? >> is not. if i could answer sir.
>> he's got a direct line to the saudi leadership as well established. he has discussions all the time with saudi rulers, himself sometimes in private so tell me what a question? >> i am. >> you're not. >> congressman keating, there are multiple lines of communication with our partners in riyadh including here in washington as well as our embassy . >> is very kushner. >> he was in one of thelines of communication . >>. >> that not i'm tracking. >> i've got 16 seconds. >> we're talking about an emergency declaration of a policy decision by the secretary of state based on conditions. >> my time is up, i'm going to have to yield back, i didn't get an answer. >> thank you mister keating, mister curtis. >> thank you mister chairman and i like to personally express myappreciation to you
and the ranking member for holding this hearing . i also would like to express like many of my colleagues our frustration that we find ourselves here. i too often as a member of congress i'm reminded of what it was like to raise six children and hear their squabbles and their differences. and not too different than that, i find plenty of blame to go around on all sides. as a member of congress, i think we're frustrated more than we would like with the powers that we believe belongs to us not being exercised. if i were to put myself in the shoes of the president i would be frustrated if my lot was dependent on a dysfunctional congress time after time together and resolve these problems as is our responsibility. i would like to associate myself with the comments of both the chairman and the ranking member and move to just slightly onto a slightly different view of this issue and talk about what concerns
me even more. and that's the situation on the ground for the civilians in yemen and i'd like to know in your opinion, what the united states government is currently doing with saudi arabia and uae to minimize civilian casualties in yemen and ensure adherenceto the convention . and deal with the humanitarian crisis on the ground. in my mind, there's one justification for the united states being involved in this and that we can make better . or you and if we were to involve an unlucky hear your comments on that. >> congress and curtis. i'll start with no question. about the conditions, the deployable humanitarian conditions. the heartbreaking conditions in yemen. as stated earlier, we are wholly supportive of the united nations political process to get resolution, to
seek resolution in yemen. as to enabling our partners, to be better at mitigating not only civilian casualties but mitigating any kind of contact with the billion infrastructure, that comes with training. that is in place, that's in process. there are evidence and elements of improvement that have been reported from the field on that. however, the coupling ourselves from our partners puts at risk a greater risk of civilian casualties so it's not to say that it's going away immediately. the work is there, the commitment is there. our being tied to our partner, our being committed to our partner helps ensure mitigation of civilian casualty as well as
destruction of civilian property. >> i would like to join with my colleagues on two points, one is to thank you for your service and the other mister chairman is to ask for further classified briefing so that we can better understand the conditions here and the type of classified briefing that would allow us to go into much greater detail and we frequently get.thank you and i yield my time. >> thank you mister curtis, we will talk about on it in another classified briefing. mister cicciline. >> and the united arab emirates, i believe that this committee on a bipartisan basis is absolutely committed to supporting america's allies. we are committing to defending america from threats and committed to our security but were committed to upholding the law, constitution and respect for human rights. the administration is trying to abuse the law to sell weapons to allies out arabia and the uae. these are countries already
using american made weapons in a campaign in yemen that has resulted ininnocent civilians being killed . the justification for this action is a bogus emergency. the complaints iran poses such a threat that emergency assistance is needed for saudi arabia and emirates to defend themselves. this is an administration that has cozied up to riyadh, putting aside gross human rights violations, putting a blind eye to saudi taking a buzz saw the washington-based in a mounting loss of life. just because you don't like the process doesn't mean you get to ignore it and your opening statement you know the importance can be to send a political single with these arms sales. it does send a signal, it's a message that we can bend our principles if you write a big enough checkthe constitution doesn't permit . we understand mister cooper i want to follow up on mister keating's question with
respect to the roles of jared kushner in this process. was mister kushner in any meeting that you attended on this topic arms sales broadly to saudi arabia? that's a yes, sir a no. >> mister cicciline, i will not talk about previous decisions in this forum but i will tell you that from an interagency standpoint, on assessment -- >> i have limited time. >> .. . >> that is a yes or no quick.
>> i cannot attest to that prayer go i can attest that any of our partners we have a deep list of officials rather executive branch or otherwise. >> i'm asking you to answer a specific question and you are not going to. do you believe iran will attack saudi arabia or uae? >>. >> i will not go into that detail here but there are threats ongoing that are evolving against our partners as well as us i will not spill classified in an open hearing. >> are those the arms that they want to sell? >>. >> it isn't limited to that. >> but the vast majority. >> there are extensive weapons
but the majority of that our offensive. >> a saudi led coalition use those as those to strike targets in yemen? is that correct? >>. >> regrettably there have been civilian targets in the coalition operation. >> the emergency request includes equipment that will not be ready for months or years. correct? >>. >> that is part of the emergency that there is a protraction of the process. well we can get delivered immediately we can do with the review process there is an emergency because there is an extension. >> it's hard to understand how the emergency response. finally mister secretariat as stated in your testimony and i will quote you "we review the secretary's actions as an affirmation of the value we continue to place on our
engagement with you. "is hard to believe we are supposed to take your complete disregard for the congressional review process as an indication of value congressional engagement. this is ghastly claiming you are ignoring this provision is a way that congress plays that role is the absurdity. can you explain that? . >> there was never a cessation at all. this is one time declaration provided by congress 40 years ago. . >> with that process. >> i don't have a crystal ball.
constantly to monitor those threat streams in the intelligence community i will not opine about those that may or may not be developing. i cannot say they're not future emergencies. for national interest security. >> the part of the question was a lack of consultation and i yield back. >>. >> i don't like to waste my time or ask questions. >> and then that request of a closed-door portion of this hearing to remove individual staff that do not have classified is there a procedural motion for that
process? >>. >>. >> he we will skill - - schedule a session at an appropriate time. >> not to be closed-door. >> in the short term we will have another briefing. >> and in a classified setting it only to waste my time or ask questions. >> you have to leave by 1230. >> promise in the future we will do that. >> that being the answer then i yield back. >> thank you. you are the assistant secretary for political and military affairs? correct? >>. >> yes congressman.
and you have responsibility of those weapons sales with the arms export control act quick. >> correct. so you would have been with that legal rationale? >>. >> yes congressman. >> that is why you who briefed congressional staff in ma may 2? >>. >> that is correct the declaration on the 23rd with the same day later did a briefing. >> so to be involved in crafting that memorandum. for those emergency powers under the a eca? >>. >>. >> it was the secretary's decision. >> so that information is reflected on that current stage? correct?
. >> that information drafting that justification would be reflected on the clearance stage showing who drafted it. >> to identify the process. to make sure your staff has that request to clear that document. >> what about the justification? >>. >> i will not do the internal process but all of these leading up to the declaration. >> which bureau? >>. >> there was that inter- agency process with the declaration that is on the clearance page of that document? >>.
>> and we'll expect that information given to us within the next 48 hours we will make sure that request is in writing today. was merit spring involved quick. >> are you referring to our legal advisor? >>. >> at the time at that time he was deputy assistant secretary of state. >> i will not talk about individuals in the inter- agency. >> but he worked for you? >>. >> there are hundreds of people in our bureau. >> may 23rd he worked for you. was he a lawyer during that time? >>. >> he is a lawyer in our department. >> was he a lawyer at that time? what position does he have now? >>. >> he is our legal advisor. >> he is legal advisor to the department of safety at the state department.
when was that transition announced? >>. >> i don't remember but he's not the only lawyer. >> is the top lawyer said that's correct but he is one person. >> that was announced may 24th from an e-mail on the very day that emergency declaration was sent to the hill according to public records this is when he got that promotion. to be first admitted to the bar in 2013 of course, he was not there acting as a lawyer all of that was central to what the legal advisor does.
. >> that is a robust bureau. >> and with that legal advisor says atypically higher 15 for every 1000 applicants which is something just over 1 percent for the entry-level position what he promoted to this position because of the golf arms sales? >>. >> noted his promotion have any connection to work on the golf arms sales? >>. >> not that i'm aware of that promotion was based on his merits and performance and ability to do the job. >> who would know the justification of that promotion? . >> i honestly don't know. >> we'll expect to get that information within 48 hours we will make sure your staff has that henry - - request in
writing. 's you have no awareness how he was promoted? >>. >> i will not talk about personal issues but it is not uncommon for personnel to do transfers within the department like any other interagency move. >> your testimony is there is no documents to show you were aware of his promotion? >>. >> of course, i was aware of his promotion. we would like to see any documents that shows you are aware of that promotion. >> your time has expired. >> i appreciate your leadership to shepherd us through the minefield thank you for being here i am concerned with the saudi coalition disregard for requirements. more specifically the february reports the coalition had gifted personnel carriers to
various third-party militia groups on the ground and in yemen including al qaeda groups and additionally i was incredibly disturbed - - disturbed that the houthis and iranians got their hands on american made them wraps and are probably busy reverse engineering them. what steps are taken to make sure none of these weapons end up in third-party hands or in hands of our enemies? . >>. >> with the security partnerships with arms munitions with accountability and follow-ups. in this particular case with the m wrought - - the m wraps one of the first things i did was contact bilaterally our partners and the varieties - -
emma roddy's that they need to be responsive it is every partner where we lay out conditions that we need to be met. it's not the first time in the history of the department not only for accountability but also saw them reconciling points on third-party transfers. . >> i would like one of those closed-door meetings. . >> i said if i miss 30 minutes of it i could catch it on cnn or fox. . >> are you concerned this creates a precedent the non- golf partners could use this as leverage and this predicate
to this emergency and to share that while there were multiple audiences there were several conditions contributing by the secretary. the primary one was the threat stream. . >> thank you very much. >> thank you allowing me to speak i will yield back the remainder of my time. [inaudible] thank you mister chairman we are here today obviously because president trump has declared an emergency.
with selling arms to saudi arabia and the uae. while circumventing congress but the problem is this administration has been discredited from fabricating emergencies or ignoring emergencies may submit this practice is very troubling and has a dismal record to fabricate emergencies when there are none. there are hundreds of thousands of women primarily showing up on our border with a humanitarian crisis. what does this administration do?
it ignores it and tries to build a wall. the muslim band put into practice and then to stop those of muslim faith those two families that i assisted were members of the armed forces of muslim faith and were detained with the potential to be sent back. that there is a problem with global warming but there is an emergency but yet this administration chooses to walk away from the paris accord. now let's go to saudi arabia to show that we all know khashoggi enter that saudi
embassy at 1:00 p.m. so mister secretary do you feel khashoggi is a law-abiding democratic leaguer - - leader? i'm sorry mbs is a law abiding democratic leader? >>. >> to your question on our partners in riyadh, their system of government is different. they are a partner of ours and important regional security partner but mentioning khashoggi however that does not preclude us from holding those who committed that murder accountable that is something the government is committed to. >> but the problem is women's rights. . >> it is fair to say we as a government continue to lean on.
>> but. >> we encourage our partners to have the human rights of individuals. >> is there a problem in saudi arabia with dissidents to be tracked down or to be tortured and put in jail? >>. >> our security relationship does not preclude our work or the necessary work. >> so we as a common practice to be redeemed in north korea? >>. >> do we sell arms to putin in russia? >>. >> that adversary is not the same. they are not a security partner. >> we don't sell arms to putin because they are thugs.
. >> we do not sell those to the existential threat. moscow is a threat we are addressing the threat at pyongyang. riyadh is a security partner of ours and we are working with a security partner. >> secretary i think having an american citizen go into a saudi embassy and disappearing is troubling. that we are dealing with a thug. that we should be ashamed of that and to circumvent the congress and i yelled back.
>> thank you for being here from the "wall street journal" and "the new york times" have written articles about faulkner a debbie terry on - - a deputy and prior to that position lobby for the defense contractor getting munitions which formed a large part of these weapons sales. did you know, mister faulkner? >>. >> i did not get a chance to meet him he departed the department. >> was he involved? >>. >> not that i'm aware of i never had a chance to meet him. >> i'm not aware and i cannot talk about. >> is it accurate? >>. >> i don't know. i don't think so i don't know him but he had a particular function in the bureau i'm not aware of him having a role.
>> you're not aware? >>. >> no sir i am not. >> that he have had a role? >>. >> if one looks at processing as we talked earlier today of the consultative process on informal review. >> absolutely that notification process from the historic nature based on how old these cases were especially 18 months or two years old he would have been aware we were communicating to congress. >> part of the weapons behind me is a strike in yemen in 2016 and what happened is the saudi's came by to drop precise in munitions kill and endure injured hundreds of civilians but then they came around again and struck the same place.
as a result the state department and other agencies went through a huge agency review process and the ammunitions were making things worse in yemen because the saudi's were intending to hit those targets. we saw that last year when the saudi's precisely struck a school bus with 40 children. there was a legal memo written in the state department of possible war crimes of the us navy involve because we were giving to an organization or coalition that was committing war crimes. have you seen that memo? >>. >> i am not aware of that memo. >> in your job do you make sure weapon sales comply with conflict? >>. >> we do. we give advice from state department lawyers and others how this reflects on conflict. >> this is the process on the front and.
>> to talk about the early stages. >> is that oral guidance? >>. >> can we see the written guidance? >>. >> as far as legal analysis? >>. >> and don't think that is in my purview but i can tell you before looking at any case , not just a matter of regional or political policy dynamics with that legal review you mentioned. >> you were given written guidance on conflict. >> there's always an ongoing process with any case. >> where we given any written guidance? >>. >> sometimes. >> and open a classified setting can we get that written guidance credit? >>. >> i cannot commit to releasing internal deliberations.
with intelligence human rights foreign policy, there are a number of considerations that natalie go through the department but what is external. >> under the law of armed conflict and international law personnel can be liable for war crimes if they give weapons to people so in the case of charted - - charles taylor was prosecuted in that case was actually cited in a supplemental filing. do you agree with that principle be so weapons to a coalition personnel could be liable? >>. >> our security partner in the gulf, our partners in the gulf we work with them to mitigate civilian casualties. i agree it's not just precision it is process and
getting it right and getting a good. because precision reference is not enough because targeting integrity also gets a partner up to a standard we would not only find acceptable in the united states. >> the republican son is about to pass 22 resolutions walking these arms sales on a bipartisan basis because the standards have not been met. i yield back. >> thank you mister chairman. the administration informed congress last week that included in the administration emergency authorization for arms is a provision for racing on top american defense firm to build high-tech bomb parts in saudi arabia.
previously the us has guarded such technology and we have seen what has happened in china as american companies were forced to produce wind turbines in chinese plants january 2018 and a wind turbine company was found guilty of stealing trade secrets. specifically software developed by amsc to manage the flow of electricity from wind turbines into the electrical grid. can you assess the risk of saudi arabia with a highly sensitive defense information used to build these weapons? >>. >> thank you congressman you are correct to observe working with any partner as far as protection not only trade
information about technology needs to be protected. it is part of our risk assessment. not just saudi arabia but all partners. to your particular question, they are not unique technologies introduced into the ecosystem like saudi arabia and another point that was part of the analysis was also how that would impact our defense industrial base back here at home. looking at a global supply chain aspect that's not new to the region or the partner certainly does not preclude protections with governors with that impact on the industrial base as well. >> so your testimony is that technology shared is out there
with the chain of knowledge and information in this industry? >>. >> specific to saudi arabia it is not a new application but is not on the open forum. >> so technology that saudi arabia already has that we are sharing with them? >>. >> they have already been exposed to is a better way. >> through our security cooperation status. >> solicit your testimony there is no to new technology shared with the saudi's? >>. >> there is technology associated with this manufacturing that is not new. >> that is not my question. very specifically is there any new technology being shared with the saudi's as part of this emergency authorization for arm arms? >>. >> in this declaration i am not aware of any new technology that only new to the partner but what is presented to congress.
>> i'm not sure that's an answer. the arm sale notification states the saudi's and emma roddy's will coproduce with united states that means a weapons deal will ship weapons jobs in technology overseas three of the 22 arm sale licenses would allow us defense company to shift production of military items which will hurt american workers are costing americans jobs. the coproduction is part of the reassurance of our allies to your point of the industrial base we want to make sure that we do trust them as a partner.
>> we are selling them arms. >> this is interoperability and a global supply chain so talk about the assessment question of that impact on the base that did factor inclusive of american-made components. >> i understand it is the coproduction process that this is a situation where the arm say you'll deal is shipping american jobs and manufacturing abroad abroad. >> it is a proliferation it is positive but it is inclusive of jobs for match one - - manufacturing components here integrated with those abroad. this was part of the assessment and the incursion upon the bottom line.
>> i don't see the justification. >> i yield back. >> mister secretary. thank you for coming. i know people talk about having a further classified briefing and i would welcome that but as my colleagues have discusse discussed, the secretary pompeo briefed members of congress classified h and 21s 21st. if there was no mention made of the need of the emergency announced three days later. i know because i was there. had there been discussions of an emergency declaration before he briefed us? were you involved in any discussions before he briefed us? >>. >> i can tell you there. >> was there? we don't have a lot of time. >> certainly looking at tools
emergency declaration was in the toolkit. >> why didn't the secretary say a dang thing about it when he briefed us in a classified setting? three days before you announced? >>. >> i will not take a guess or gander but here i can provide right now you had any merging and changing. >> in three days and emergency was created to require the declaration? >>. >> yes. >> your testimony is in those days and emergency arose requiring a declaration? >>. >> yes i would parallel that two sanctions. we have a number of tools. >> with all due respect i don't think that is credible. i will move on i am quoting you earlier holding a partner accountable does not prevent us from working with that
partner referencing human rights. in what ways is the united states holding saudi arabia accountable for the gruesome murder of "the washington post" journalist khashoggi? how are we holding them accountable? >>. >> there has been a line of communication not only the secretary but others with riyad riyadh. >> no question i don't think there is any question that his murder was prosecuted in a fashion that needs to be addressed and held accountable and those involved need to be brought to justice. as to that was the crown prince involved? >>. >> i do not know. >> the cia has concluded that he was. has the president of the united states in the secretary
admitted the findings of our intelligence agencies the crown prince ordered the murder of mister khashoggi? >>. >> is a 20 year member i will not talk about classified information but i will say that there is no disagreement on anybody of the administration or capitol hill that mister khashoggi's murder needs to be addressed. >> and those who prosecuted the murder. >> i have limited time i appreciate your answer. in what way is saudi arabia being held accountable for the war crimes it has committed by murdering civilians on multiple locations in yemen and for causing a famine in yemen to the prosecution of this war we have been actively involved in? how do we hold them accountable besides vetoing congressional reveled - - resolutions.
>> the houthis threat. >> i'm not asking about that. >> that contributes to the famine. >> that is not the war crimes. >> houthis to deny food. >> we can have another hearing about that but i'm talking about saudi you are selling arms to saudi arabia and making a simplistic black-and-white thing this is the good guys this is the bad guy. >> it is not simplistic. nobody here would ever say. >> in what way are we holding saudi arabia accountable for the horrific crimes it is committing in yemen? >>. >> our partnership with the security partner mainly saudi arabia. >> were not the only one but that particular one in the region with riyadh is incumbent not only to provide munitions but also the training and sustainment that
goes with it that is inclusive our relationship to get to be a better partner. >> my time is expired in the end we all have to answer for our actions on the same way and i just pray we take more seriously the horrific reality on the ground in yemen and change course immediately. i yield back. >> i will call next for questions spent thank you mister chair mister secretary thank you for being here today as a follow-up to the comments i want to give you an opportunity to correct what it is that you said the statement related to the mall khashoggi's murder you said it was prosecuted in a fashion that needs to be addressed. it is my hope the department doesn't think any state-sponsored murder that happens in a consulate is ever one that just discussed i hope
you will denounce that murder would you like to take that opportunity to do that now? >>. >> we have denounced that murder of course, we would never abide by state-sponsored acts. there is no daylight on that one. >> thank you. you have repeatedly referred to the need to provide our partners in the region with defensive capabilities prickle in fact, you say specifically this is not intended to be a military step but of those 22 cases are distinctly offensive weapons including precision guided munitions or smart phones. here is an example of the weapon system here is a disconnect why we are providing offensive and lethal weapons for defensive purposes? >>. >> thank you progress bars weapons capabilities we want to make sure that not only these partners of the region
carry equity for us not just their own sovereignty but to ensure they are providing protection for our equity so it's not just a matter to say we want to make sure your sovereignty is protected but they carry away for us with precision aspects as discussed earlier it is contributing to the improvement or targeting integrity in any realm to ensure that the target is actually the one that is supposed to be hit versus a categorical or less precise. >> talk about that targeting integrity with the next image this was a school bus hit more than 40 children died when the precision guided weapon hit the school bus. more than 50 people killed, more than 40 schoolchildren.
talking about those offensive weapons deemed as an emergency circumstance that the department circumvents article one of the constitution that gives us the authority to approve weapon sales of these weapons to entities committing mass atrocities, want to make sure we are clear on the level of the malady. you have referred to a protracted process that is in fact, a constitutional process that we as members of congress have a responsibility to exercise when we are selling our weapon systems that are this lethal two countries abroad be they allies or otherwise. he specifically said this is a one-time event but there is nothing specified that says the department can have a
one-time effort circumvention effort are you committing this to being a one-time event? >>. >> that is conditions based but if you look at the history and the precedent it is only the fifth time in 40 years this has been applied. the first time was 1979 with the carter administration. you are right it is highly unusual but the circumstances are unusual but it is part of that toolkit for diplomatic deterrence. >> i would also note these are not toolkits for diplomatic returns but for more aggressive offensive natures. speaking of offensive addressing the saudi offensive efforts against the houthis but where does that leave us? we talk about iran and the escalation now we supply these weapons to saudi arabia and a
number of other partners with precision guided munitions and antitank missiles but what are we preparing for? i did attend the classified briefing there was no clear discussion there was a need to circumvent congress what are they preparing for two arm our allies in the region with this many offensive weapons? >>. >> on readiness and capability we could talk further in close briefing i would say there are some threat streams not directly tied to us interest so the attacks on the saudi arabia. >> but this was after that was put in place. >> i'm using that as an example it is not unique. we do need to have a further conversation about those impact impacts.
threat streams definitely are a factor but it is a direct threat to us. the indirect threat to our proxy or others outside the region. >> many colleagues have raised the issue with those general trends to circumvent the responsibility of congress and i would note for the record we have constitutional responsibility relating to any aggressive war making actions with iran or anyone else so the administration is trying to repair itself with any hostility they will begin respecting the constitution to come before congress to make their case. i yield back. >> i will recognize myself. mister secretary you opened your testimony by referring to
the last time this happened in 1984 when we shipped stinger missiles to saudi arabia to defend against a threat from iran. tell us what that is. >> it is an offensive capability. >> a weapon for shooting down aircraft attacking you for quit as a defensive weapon defend to defend saudi arabia from air attacks from iran. at that point the department explicitly made the case the reason they were being provided they were available immediately to help the saudi's deal with the imminent threat. we now talk about precision guided munitions. these are not defensive weapons they are designed to enable to continue them to continue airstrikes in yemen. >> that is correct going back to that defensive capability
you brought up, we do provide defensive systems that are anti- aircraft or air capabilities however looking at that concentric ring of security, it isn't just particular capabilities that occur on sovereign states or partner partners, they are addressing the threat streams directed any regional capacity. >> they will not help them with their attacks with their airport in riyadh. you also mentioned earlier today that precision weapons are helpful to avoid civilian casualties which i find that rather strange. they are using precision weapons now. are they not back.
>> that is correct spent their hitting precisely bridges, hospitals, schools, hun targets they are precision strikes. so how are those going to help them avoid this? help us out they are. >> nobody will deny the tragedy and heartbreak of the civilian casualties. no question about that. there is room to improve the integrity of the targeting process. it does not preclude us from making sure our partners, as we are doing is reported to get them in a better place to apply precision methods that are not civilian targets or entities. >> we have been trying to do that for five years. in march there was a strike by
the saudi's presumably using weapons on a hospital in yemen that hospital was on a no strike list we provided to the saudi's. >> i do not know but it should have been. >> there you have it. but yet you have testified today, secretary, the reason we are doing this is because we need to reassure the saudi's to trust us. they continue year after year in yemen to hit targets we have specifically asked them not to hit. and our response is to blow past objections giving weapon so they can trust us isn't the issue if we can trust them? >>. >> with any partnership including saudi arabia there is an ongoing discourse and engagement and work to be
done. but you walk away from our partner would exacerbate the situation in yemen. >> civilian targets have been victimized by the houthis but to walk away from the partner would exacerbate the current situation. >> nobody is suggesting we walk away. let me shift. we brought up the khashoggi killing setting aside that con troll - - controversial decision if they set out to kill him or kidnap the word you say it is fair to assume the saudi government intention was to send a message to exiles those that were critical of the regime? is that a fair assumption? >>. >> i will not assess the assumption but what i can provide is from the west in point is we do support dissident voices wherever they
are located or any other partner that we don't silence civil society but we bolster and support that. >> understood are you familiar with section six of the armed exports control act? >>. >> are you referring to 36 c? >>. >> section six no export license may be issued under this act with respect any country determined to be engaged in a consistent pattern of intimidation or harassment directed against individuals of the united states have you looked at this case with respect to the application of the armed export control act? >>. >> that is correct and that is part of the calculus when the inter- congressional and the formal review chair review process. some of these predate the murder of mister khashoggi some have been after. >> you see no pattern of intimidation by the saudi's.
>> addressing any intimidation is not precluded from any assessment that includes of the human rights report issued that's also part of the calculus. >> i yield back to recognize congresswoman omar. >> thank you chairman. it is no secret that within line what my colleague from new york said saudi arabia they are a brutal regime export brutality crush democratic movements abroad and i also believe they have been funders of terrorists. we have heard reports they are transferring weapons to al qaeda. i believe our relationship
with them in its current form is immoral. not only that but also counterproductive to our national security. i believe trusting them to protect our needs and protect us against the terrorist threat is like trusting a thief to protect your shop. this administration selling billions of dollars of weapons is outrageous it is a complete disregard for the will of congress and the american people to be a slap in the face of our values. twice in the last 25 years saudi arabia emirates have quashed the uprising in the saudi's actively supported the egyptian coup in 2013 and april this year the united
nations believed they were on the verge of negotiating peace in libya. this has collapsed instead into a civil war waged with the blood he campaigned with them or at weapons and most recently in sudan visiting and shortly after that they immediately began murdering democratic protesters by the hundreds. it is clear the states see the saudi hand in the crackdown asking the brother to stop the killings for go this is a disturbing pattern so backing
the saudi emirates is the crimes against humanity to provide them with arms. so i ask you, how can we make sure that us weapons do not end up in the hands or ensure the us weapons are not used for those political sensors? >>. >> congresswoman thank you. as to our partnerships you mention saudi arabia and the emirates and other partners that our either developing or evolving, all partnerships including some that our economic are predicated on her interest but that is not new or unique to this administration or the previous
administration or back to the time of washington but we develop partnerships because of what works best for us interest. that does not preclude us from holding partners accountable not just human rights but accountable on protecting interest with a capacity or sustainment with that is a relationship with a long-term investment. >> so how can we assure this partnership can be trusted to protect eventually having the weapons? that is my question and to make sure it doesn't go into murdering political protesters.
because our weapons have been used in to see the saudi involvement in their footprint in libya and in somalia without shabbat. so how can you assure the american people we are not emboldening them to continue their reign of terror in that region asking them to be our partner? >>. >> saudi arabia has been a long time security partner for almost 40 years. it never has precluded us from a continent accountability not just on the arms transfers and that assistance there is that nonproliferation aspect and that point is in our consideration with interagency to make sure that there is not spillage into law enforcement that law enforcement entities
are not in receipt of assistance because those relationships are for sovereignty and security not with the crackdown of civil society or of their own people. >> my time is up for quite don't believe this is a case it is active engagement report after report that is shown this is not an accident. this is not a part of what the saudi's are emirates and i hope we will assess the relationship with them to make sure that we are stabilizing the region and continuing to engage in the war against terror. >> thank you mister secretary
- - chairman. mister secretary repeatedly asserting we deal with an emergency in fact, you said earlier it is a policy decision by the secretary of state that is so urgent and so urgent you can even wait for a 30 day congressional review and in fact, the testimony on the 24th was based on the finding now i will remind you again three days after a classified briefing while it was clearly under consideration did not even take the time to mention it to congress but you clearly made an assessment that these are for delivery very soon if it is an emergency. >> yes. the direct commercial sales. >> if that is an emergency you considered when.
>> you have that specific information when each of these items would be deliver. >> and not just from the department of state. >> i get it. it is a timing issue and at such an emergency you cannot wait 30 days so to ask you if you could provide the information to the committee when each of these items will be delivered? >>. >> i cannot say specificity but if it's a direct commercial sale it's moving
now. . >> i get it. i understand. that is what i'm asking you. i don't need you to tell me if it is manufactured it will come later i want to know if this is an emergency what is the timeline? i will get to the commercially made ones but how long will it take to manufacture these to produce for delivery? >>. >> to your question, her case, her case, not all case it is conditions based on contractually based. we can talk either a few months or longer which has contributed to the emergency calculus. >> it is a few months or longer but is such an emergency that a few months or longer for every single one of those other items but there
wasn't 30 days for congress? to understand why it is so difficult for this institution to understand? >>. >> the review never stops. >> come on. you said earlier the review is ongoing because we know about this. there is no 30 day notice. correct? there was no formal 30 day notice given. >> the communication. >> was there a formal 30 day notice given? yes or no. >> please answer that. >> yes there was formal notification by an emergency declaration. >> that is not what i am asking and that is the problem we have the way this whole thing has been handled. i will move on and you understand that mister secretary. i don't appreciate the attempt
to be clever to refuse to answer the question which is now. pursuant to law you did not give that 30 day notice. you went forward with a list of items none of which will be a fire - - available for months except the ones i will talk about now. you cannot find time to give us a 30 day notice? let's talk commercial. . . . . >> i want to make sure i understand that. one company manufactured over $2 billion of precision guided ammunitions just to have on the shelf and in case it was decided perhaps they would be available so i might have interest in purchasing them. is that what you're telling us? i understand but we respect -- >> if it is the earlier generation it will be. >> i want to know about these
$2 billion that are scheduled to be delivered to the saudis by one company, your tummy the company built these hoping one day to have a buyer. it was not part of a longer plan that was not part of a discussion that the president had when he was in saudi arabia two years ago. none of that happened they just build them and here we come, perhaps a chance to sell them. chris i would offer that saudi arabia is not the only partner we work within security cooperation and security systems. that particular item, pgm 's wouldn't be limited to just saudi arabia. >> i understand. >> we have eight minutes. seven minutes to vote. and we still have -- >> we, i don't think it is too much to ask whether the assistant secretary is telling us that to and have billion dollars over $2 billion of precision guided munitions manufactured to be sold to the saudis were not actually
manufacture for that purpose and it's a coincidence they are available now pending this emergency declaration. >> i would say that the non-answer does answer the question. >> okay. thank you, mr. secretary, for being here. like my colleague, mr. levin, i attended the classified briefing on may 21. the question mr. levin posed to you that emergency room merge, you said that emergency merge between the classified briefing on may 21 on iran and the notification to necessitate the use of emergency authorities, when was the decision memo prepared? >> thank you, congressman. the decision process developed with the thought streams but i offer as far as having as a known toolkit, has always been there. many secretary of state knows that they have as authorized
through statute by congress that they have the emergency declaration as an option. >> excuse me, are you aware when the memo was prepared? >> yes, the memo was prepared. when was that? it would have been right before we issued the declaration. >> so it was prepared for the briefing on may 21? >> it was prepared and issued at the time of declaration. but to be fair, the ongoing analysis and the monitoring of the threat streams will predates may 21 chance and necessity to have secretary pompeo and the acting secretary of defense shanahan come here in brief congress. >> what i don't appreciate is that when congress assembles and we receive a briefing that there is an emergency declaration made three days later that we were not made aware of. that should have been given to us at that time. that is part of our oversight
responsibility. so if the memo was prepared before that briefing, which i will ask some questions in red in the hope will be responded to. i want to know why we were not briefed on it at the time when we could have asked questions about this. do you have an answer to that question? do you know why congress was not briefed at the time on may 21 by the acting secretary of defense and chairman of the chief of staff on the declaration that was going to make three days later? on a broad sense they were briefed. on three counts for the first count before may 21 there was already ongoing consultative process not only in these cases relevant to iran and the emergency declaration but also any other host of cases that we have before congress on other partners in other parts of the world. that was already happening anyway. what was unique as you noted, was the necessity for the
executive branch to come to congress and update congress on what was been identified as very specific strut dreams-- th streams on u.s. persons as well as partners. >> i'm going to try and get to the bottom of this because i want to know whether or not congress was kept in the dark. that is what i want to know. if we are the duly elected or presented as of the american people and we have a constitutional responsibility to oversee what you are doing in the name of the american people, and if the decision was reached before we were briefed, i want to know why we were not told about it. and if it was reached after the briefing, want to know that as well. i want to know what went into the decision making because to me it sounds again it seems that many of my colleagues have said, and attempt basically to circumvent congress because we did not agree with the decision to sell his arms to saudi arabia. because of what they are doing in yemen, with these weapons. the rationale you have given centers around iran.
and i want to ask you as i have asked some of your colleagues in the administration, whether or not you said the united states assessment by the cia with high confidence that mohammed bin salman ordered the assassination of jamal khashoggi, whether you accept that assessment? >> i will not talk about any intelligence -- >> do you accept -- >> i'm not. i'm not going to talk to any particular assessment paid not only imposter, not only on threat. no assessment in the ic in an open hearing. >> this is something that cannot be shared whether or not you accept the cia assessment? >> we are talking about assessments. we are not talking about -- >> was the declaration of emergency, was a dependent on the cia assessment? on the intelligence assessment? broadly speaking. >> emergency decoration absolutely included threat reporting. some of it brought some of it finished.
>> you see the problem here? do not answer that. the problem here is that you are willing to accept an assessment here that serves your ends and what you want to do which is sell arms that the congress does not want you to sell to an ally. but you are not willing to accept that assessment when it goes to holding that ally responsible for the murder of an american resident! of a journalist. what happens when the united states of america starts sanctioning murderers are broad? what happens to the world order we don't stand up and say something? when the russians are able to kill someone of great britain we say something but we will not say something when the saudis do. this is not who we are in i think you know that. >> thank you. secretary cooper we have about two minutes left. your testimony earlier you said when our adversaries sell weapons of war they do not place the same if any premium that we do in addressing the risk the capabilities that we
provide may contribute to the abuses of human rights violations of international humanitarian law. knowledge, the likelihood these weapons would in fact contribute to an abuse of human rights? or violation of international law? >> congressman, with all partners, we are committed to mitigate any of those abuses and when we conduct our interagency assessments on any transfer on any sale, that is calculated in there. it is also not just a part of statute is part of policy. our conventional arms transfer policy mandates that we guarantee that we ensure the as we move forward in the consultative process with congress that we are looking at how we mitigate those risks. >> what are the guarantees? what guarantees you have with the saudis and that the weapons will not be used against
civilians in yemen? what guarantees? >> particular to the saudis and the partnership that this comes with not only the receipt of systems or munitions or weapons. along with that comes our capacity training, our precision training, our rule of law, rule of armed conflict training. this is us being coupled with a partner to make them the better partner. not just make them a capable partner make them a better partner. it is incumbent upon us to do this. walking away from a partner increases risk, expose a potential risk for a more difficult, more catastrophic situation. >> what type of kamiyah mobley we have that they will actually do that? >> reportedly we are getting commitments from the government that they have acknowledged the room to improve. the room to be a better partner and actually mitigate civilian casualties. >> is the same guy, same folks that made the deal that took care of jamal khashoggi with a bone saw? the same guy that kidnapped the
prime minister in lebanon? same guys that disappeared hundreds of dissidents disagreed? same group, is at the same group you made the deal with? >> our relationship with saudi arabia is almost four decades old. our relationship with saudi arabia. >> going in the wrong direction. >> it is a relationship that is long and caring the water in her equities on our behalf in a very difficult fraught region with direct threats to us, to our persons and our interest. it does not preclude us though as you noted, does not preclude us from working with saudi arabia or any partners to ensure that they have improved their processes that is not just about precision. it is about more dedication and delicacy. >> the improvements seem to be going the wrong way. that is my clear inclination. and everyone else in the committee. it is not getting better it's getting worse. the arrogance of the crown prince.
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