tv State Department Officials Testify on Russia Before Senate Foreign... CSPAN December 4, 2019 2:03am-4:22am EST
working. this is about two hours 20 minutes. 's. [inaudible conversations] the committee will come to orde order. thank you all for coming today and for our witnesses for joining us as we examine the current state of the us russia relationship to deal with the russian federation. it's time to assess our relationship as we have recently celebrated the 30th anniversary of events leading to the collapse of the soviet union, fall of the berlin wal wall, solidarity selection
victory in poland many former soviet states with prosperous democracies with memberships in the eu. mister putin has taken russia down a darker path many suffer while oligarchs enrich themselves russia make sure only kremlin approved officials make the cut with those who military and organization in those outlets the russian people are inhumanely present and tortured to disagree with the government. not only does the russian federation make it painful for the average russian but also makes it harder for those around the world he has meddled in american intellection's sewing chaos
propping up the regime of the syrian president selling arms to africa and missile-defense systems us allies and adversaries alike and continue as people suffer in large part through russian assistance with the occupation of georgia and ukraine over the years and the russian people in london on sovereign soil. the world is more dangerous and less free because of the federation the relationship has hit a low point during the height of the cold war they ensure that neither side made a disastrous miscalculation our engagements with russia are few with a growing risk of a calculation to be clear with putin and his cronies they have been pretty tough since
2014 sanctions on dozens of companies that have been involved in the illegal takeover of crimea with the human rights abuses in russia in 2018 after russia use chemical weapons we close to russian consulates to help coordinate the undeclared russian spies the us rotates troops to poland and the enhanced polar presence in america has provided lethal and nonlethal weapons to help ukraine defend itself from russian back separatist each of these are important to the global influence however they do not form a cohesive strategy america including congress must think strategically about russia now and in the future i encourage
these witnesses to discuss the current strategy toward russia and what it is intended to accomplish. we must also urge caution the administration and congress while focusing strategy on the sanctions that's not for dealing with russia but simply a tool i have serious concerns about the consequences in the absence of a larger strategy. sanctions don't necessarily make them suffer and in the absence of concrete policy goals a well targeted sanctions bill with clear policy goal in mind and more general sanctions were not connected to specific goals and counterproductive with
that coordination with european allies that are closer to russia with distance and connectivity to undermine our alliance. and in some cases when sanctions have economic consolidation these cannot be the outcomes that we want i assume that we oppose and now i yield to senator mendez. >> thank you mister chairman for calling this important hearing i appreciate you doing that secretaries thank you for joining us with the administration's policy with respect to the russian federation before we hear from our witnesses i would like to outline five essential elements i believe should comprise our policy on the russian federation. first make clear that so many
examples of the invasion of georgia since 2008 are simply unacceptable. they are not the norm of international affairs the invasion of ukraine and crimea had the attempted assassination with chemical weapons on foreign soil with an attack on the 2016 election russia is clearly not a country that belongs in the g7 that is still mystifying the president refuses to defend this behavior he says the kremlin attack was a hoax repeating lies from kremlin propaganda it was ukraine that backed - - that actually interfered in the election. during the cold war those that unwittingly broadcast propaganda were called useful idiots regardless of what you call them today spouting
kremlin lies whatever it is it does a lot of damage. second we must implement a clear sanctions regime sanctions on russia today do not have the desired effect. why? because they are not serious in their implementation several mandatory provisions still go ignored i won't go through the whole list other than to point out the most egregious it has been 144 days since turkey took delivery of the russian air defense system clearly a transaction and just last week it tested the system against an american f-16 and american produced f-16 enough
is enough. sanctions must be imposed without further delay. any new russian sanctions must make clear the ultimate policy goals what kind of behavior we are trying to change and how sanctions can be lifted without behavioral change taking place. increasing pressure on moscow we must have effects during the enhanced regime us companies may no longer benefit from the russian economy american investors may no longer benefit from the russian sovereign debt market and that the sector could be impacted of course we seek to minimize these effects but the ultimate measure is how aggression impacts national security at the end of the day that is the ultimate measure that matters. thermal third with arms control, when russia is in
compliance with the treaty seeking to extend it is great in the short and long-term russia could upload hundreds of nuclear weapons to the current strategic force the rapid expansion of the nuclear arsenal places the united states at a strategic disadvantage with the fundamental reconsideration of our posture for look forward to hearing your views on this today. we need to remember the plight of the russian people who live under endemic corruption straying far from traditional support from the democratic process human rights and universal values must be at the center of policies with respect to russia and we need to support our friends in europe especially those on the frontline of russian aggression the funding should be increased recently the administration decided to
redirect to the border wall instead of mexican paying for the wall our closest allies bear the cost finally the american citizen who has been detained in russia since last december with the russian authorities have evidence they should charge mister whalen i don't believe such evidence exist and if they don't they should let him go. i am under no illusion of mother elements of russia policy that responsibility to defend this country from the threats posed by the russian federation is either not interested or compromised for us to stand up our security and institutions and i look forward to working with you and others on the committee with legislation toward that. >> we will now turn to the witnesses ambassador to
pakistan lebanon and special envoy to the middle east peace in washington the deputy assistant secretary of state and director for palestinian affairs as the executive assistant to madame albright and also rank of career ambassador in his home state of new jersey. >> that is why he is such an exceptional public servant. >> thank you very much for that and thank you ranking member menendez i welcome the opportunity to be here today to discuss us policy to russia under trump united states is taking consistent action against moscow's attempts to undermine interest of those of our allies and partners around the world we will continue to use the tools including
diplomacy to address and deter any further such threatening actions from moscow and protect the interest of america as it relates to russia. as articulated in the national security strategy a great period of power and competition administration russia policy takes a realistic approach to be a resourceful competitor of the united states those hinder the ambitions we do not seek an adversarial relationship with russia they are open to cooperation and with this administration to protect the national security and that of allies when moscow attempts to threaten them american diplomacy to russia must be backed by military power second to none and fully integrated with all instruments of power the
administration has increase the defense budget $716 billion fy 19 to prioritize infrastructure to maintain a robust nuclear deterrent the systemic weakness is reflected in foreign policy this oligarchic regime to stifle public content illustrated by the harsh were spent response since 2011 the russian people increasingly realize the corrupt regime is either incapable of addressing their problems or make them the source russia seeks to dominate the neighborhood in ukraine it must and those obligations to encourage those steps that the president zelensky has taken to resolve the conflict in eastern ukraine so far we are disappointed by moscow's response it isn't just an external or military wine it utilizes digital technology to target us and our allies from within.
including well resourced influences backed by the highest levels of the russian government in the heart of the western world to provide significant foreign assistance to europe and eurasia building resilience to an increasing pressure on russia influence while encountering you russia influence the department creates support for the global engagement center we have degraded his ability by imposing costs on the russian state in the oligarchy that sustains it 321 russia related individuals and entities since 2017 this serves as a warning to russian government we will not tolerate any activity to manipulate the 2020 election i confronted on russian interference of our elections in july and raise the matter with the ambassador several times likewise taking firm
action of diplomatic presence a response with the staffing tab with diplomatic personnel to close for russian facilities with a nerve agent to expel those from the russian embassy the diplomats and other regions including the middle east south america and africa aware the actions exacerbated the military support and attack against civilians exacerbated the humanitarian crisis in venezuela pressing venezuela to withdraw for the former maduro regime so with those destabilizing policies with a serial disregard for international security and arms control commitments to have another significant challenge for the policy to pursue a new era of arms control agreements congress
has a critical role to play to provide the tools and resources to implement the strategy we are committed to working with you in this regard thank you for inviting me today i look forward to the questions of the committee. >> we now have doctor ford secretary for international security and nonproliferation. also delegated the authorities of the office of undersecretary for arms control and national security. previously serving as a senior director for weapons of mass distraction and counter proliferation of national security council. he began public service in 1996 as assistant consult for the intelligence oversight board and several staffs principal deputy in the bureau of verification and compliance and a special note non- nuclear proliferation through 2018 a senior fellow and the author of three books and a
doctorate and a law degree. the floor is yours. >> thank you to the committee for having us here. 's secretary hale has summarized the broad sweep of our strategy and in my own testimony i would like to address these questions with respect to where i am with the undersecretary as i mentioned. >> and from that perspective of arms control the ongoing challenges i think it's important to remember with that long background but also of notable successes over time the changes of the strategic environment from the end of the cold for it the strategic
arms reduction that the arsenals come down to small fractions of what they once were. i mentioned this because it's important to remember this background it is possible to make progress when the circumstances are conducive to such movements we hope to get back to such an environment and our policies are designed to make this possible as well as protect the american people and her allies but for now the security environment is very challenging russia's developing extraordinary new delivery systems of which there are no us counterparts and likely to default outside the existing framework also with nonstrategic nuclear weapons and they have a larger
stockpile be have and projected to expand the weapons considerably over the next decade the chairman would be familiar with the ground launch cruise missile with the production of that system and the unwillingness to change course in that regard and to the unhappy position to have to withdraw from the committee in the wake of those russia violations but that is only one in a broad range of the dual capability systems they have longer ranges and lower yields than before and coming online but that strategy as demonstrated with coercive and military uses russia had to still remain in compliance but in connection with most other
arms control agreements and it's nothing short of appalling the statement remains in chronic noncompliance and is only selectively fulfilling also the problem of chemical weapons where russia condones with the continued violations by the client state in russia itself is used chemical weapons by developing and using a military grade nerve agent of a nato ally of the united kingdom being up to no good in the domains of conflict since cyberspace and outerspace even trying to promote hollow and disingenuous not to address
the challenges that russia itself is working to create so this track record is miserable i would stress we are working to address these challenges they are as robust as they are extensive as we coordinate into a strategy to push back against russian mission of the national security strategy makes it clear to take it seriously and we are doing so in the face of the national security threat to get through this phase of political competition we must stay with the modernization to be sure our allies not only of the capacity but the willingness to go against intimidation and
aggression while still keeping a good faith negotiation if we can do that you think we can stabilize the situation and that is what the policy is devoted to. thank you mister chairman. >> give me your thoughts if you would on strong opponents it has been in place as long as it has we can't talk about it in the setting of absolute compliance by the russians but from a general standpoint they are substantially more and compliance with the weapons than they ever were. by the disparity?
and then to get them to comply? and with the two treaties and agreements is different than the weaponry systems quex. >> i would hesitate to get into putin's head in this respect but they made position they wanted to have the inf treaty did not allow them to have that we would remain compliant. >> they were right. >> absolutely correct we were compliant but certainly now we are working to try to address to meet those threats with a conventionally armed system
such as the ground cruise missile that yes they assume we are being compliant and thought they could get away not just testing but deploying a treaty hoping we would not respond to it. why is not a position i could guess but that's not something that they needed to but russian is developing today the development of a new strategic development system that is difficult to be brought in within the arms control framework we have seen mister putin brag about the new superheavy icbm development of nuclear power and underwater drone to be
familiar with that flying chernobyl disaster of the cruise missile that has lethality in that area they are developing a whole range of systems most of these are not likely to fall within a new start so that leaves aside the issue of nonstrategic weapons that artie has a large arsenal so this is what they are already deciding to do outside the framework of current arms control to make sure our policy is in a position to address. >> secretary hale did they interfere of the election of donald trump. >>.
>> yes they assess putin aimed at the presidential election. >> was the interference a hoax? are you aware of any evidence ukraine interfered in the 2016 election quex. >> i am not. >> i appreciate doctor hill's testimony before the national security council who said that theory is a fictional narrative perpetrated and propagated by the russian security services themselves do you have any reason to disagree with doctor hill quex. >> i do not add a press conference with hungarian press conference putin himself suggested ukraine interfered in the 2016 election.
>> i don't recall that but i don't doubt that. >> he said in 2017 press conference we all know during the presidential campaign they adopted a unilateral position with the approval of the political leadership of a candidate to be more precise. has this been regular propagand propaganda. >> i don't know if that is a regular point but i don't follow that on a daily basis. >> would that be in his interest to promote a narrative quex. >> possibly. >> you are the undersecretary. how was it something as critical as russia through the united states national security interest it's only putin's interest to push a narrative quex.
>> that president putin made this point. >> and then even confiscates but it is curious that ukrainian interference is not in a position of senior diplomats like yourself and with the presidents talking point. >> national security and the members of congress are repeating the lies quex. >> turning to sanctions does it ministration have third authority to impose sanctions against the russia pipeline
quex. >> i don't know if we have that exact authority. >> let me offer to you the answer is yes the administration has the authority to impose sanctions with other things the russian pipelines and why have they not impose sanctions the president talks tough about a pipeline but the administration hasn't lifted a finger to prevent the destruction the committee passed legislation to require sanction likely included in the nda a bit every day that ticks by is another one and you could act today do you have any idea why you have not acted quex. >> we oppose the pipeline. >> you have the power to do something about it.
i'm trying to get a sense is there a policy reason you have not actually pursued the sanctionable authority you have under the law to stop with the administration opposes quex. >> we have been using other tools to stop the pipeline from going forward by working with our allies. >> the most powerful opportunity would be to create a huge problem for those involved to lay the pipeline knowing they would be sanctioned that would be the most powerful tool. you have and have not used it. are sanctions mandatory quex. >> it refers to what section but section 231 i believe that is a yes. >> what does that trigger. >> a determination by the secretary of state with
someone on a list of specified persons. >> did turkey take delivery on july 24th quex. >> that sounds my public report say between one.five and two.$5 billion so a transaction took place russia delivered the system in turkey paid for it. >> i believe that's correct today have an impact on us security interest. >> that's why we have declined from their participation. >> that is what secretary pompeo has made very clear. >> in fact you have sanctioned china for purchasing the as/400 which was flawed and you sanctioned china with the
very defense system that's clearly a significant transaction 144 days later and just recently tested again with the f-16 which i'm sure made your negotiations a hell of a lot better to the conclusion that you want so you send a global message that in fact we are not serious uniformly enforcing the sanctions congress passed and that are mandatory and that's a challenge because other countries will say turkey gotta pass why can't i? and to undermine the very essence of russia and the military procurement sales around the world. i appreciate the chairman has a markup but when you don't
ultimately pursue mandatory sanctions then the discretion that you seek with other administrations have sought, i acknowledge that but that discretion is tough for some of us to accept so then how do we ever believe if you have discretion you will not consistently use that discretion? this is a problem. >> you are quite right regarding the issue with turkey as nato ally. but you will have the opportunity to speak on this next week. we do intend to have a markup next week. so with that senator johnson. >> so let me have the opportunity to follow up what is your reluctance to impose mandatory sanctions quex. >> secretary pompeo has made
it very clear we will comply this is process still currently underway we did sanctioned china and they took possession january 2018 and 8 months later in september we issued with respect to the chinese procurement entity so as the nature of these things go that was a deliberative process to make sure we understood we had done her homework with regard to the sanctions along the chinese procurement entity. it took about eight months to do that we deliver the process with turkey that is still underway.
>> i want to give you an opportunity to explain that. undersecretary hale i want to talk about the board of governors and the capability people used to circumvent the firewalls around the internet. in countries like russia and china and iran they do not use the appropriations of the confirmation hearing of the nominee director that seems to be snagged hopefully we can get that individual confirmed but is it policy to aggressively pursue those technologies to circumvent those internet firewalls. >> yes it is. >> can you expand? why haven't we done that it seems to be a reluctance that
if you were on broadcast program as opposed to technology that opens up to repressed citizens. >> i agree with the thrust of your concern unfortunately that's not my direct responsibility so i have to get back to you. >> but that makes sense to you quex. >> yes. >> hopefully they can recommend his confirmation to the senate as soon as possible. also your evaluation of the current relationship china is thinking the relationship to turkey. >> i think in general the behavior is characterized by opportunity to deflect
attention to their internal problems and use aggressive tactics for our allies in the west so with a great power competition of russia and china to find some of interest they want to harm our values and the democratic practices i would put that in that context but there are also differences between china and russia when it comes to turkey they are seeking to promote their own interest in various ways and other times you had to work out our differences and russia seeks to explore those when they can russia plays a less prominent role today than other periods of history we continue to consult with russia by the way to find
commonalities of interest but it's difficult to do that but with north korea, syria, iran, venezuela arms control issues counterterrorism we do try to find common ground. >> with those mandatory sanctions that is a concern that we will push turkey into the welcoming arms of russia. >> we are not interested in doing that we want to make sure they are anchored fully that is a long-term strategic objective in addition to the other points we are in discussion of those f4 hundreds in a matter to protect national security interest.
>> thank you to both of our witnesses secretary i want to follow up on the questions on the meddling of the elections by russia you indicated you had conversations about the interference of the upcoming election. >> the fbi director testified in july russia absolutely intends to interfere in our elections. have we just been ineffective with our relationship with russia to prevent them from trying again in the 2020 elections? of the sanctions not been used effectively has this administration not been effective or do you disagree.
>> i agree that the russians are seeking to influence a 2020 elections russian behavior is not for justify but they also use social media and cybertools on a whole host of issues so we have to have that continued focus on this problem another concern is that deniability element that they hide behind. >> is that what they're doing with your conversations? >> yes but according to director we have not been successful at least as of july this year. >> i have been in frequent engagement with the russian ambassador to expose the information that we have that demonstrates russian interference if they repeat that performance in 2020. >> are we taking any other
steps quex. >> that's our diplomatic message to the russians also the whole government approach to deter from this kind of interference. >> you mentioned miss information fy 17 budget congress appropriated $625 million can you tell us how effective that was used to counter the propaganda you talk about quex. >> and have measurable data today but we are pleased to have that kind of support on a global basis working with our allies. they're not just trying to influence our elections but all along their border, in the eu and those that are relatively new democracies. >> so the administration held up use of that money under
congressional pressure was exerted you say it was helpful is there a strategy in this administration to seek additional resources to counter russia propaganda influence quex. >> yes. the global engagement center last year for the first two years was $30 million were asking 76.5 million. >> that congress gave 6 million that you did not ask for it did not spend progress at least initially. >> i can tell you that support is very helpful. >> getting to the chairman's point of a strategy the foreign policy is that the values of america we talk about sanctions working and being strategic the magnetic ski sanctions for those who are specifically involved in
human rights violations with the magnetic ski death in september russia has upped its activity against the defender of human rights imprisoning the people who dissented with putin what is our strategy to make sure they know they have the support of america with what they are trying to do? do we have a strategy with these imprisonments quex. >> the most powerful thing we can do is speak out and we do so i hope we have a ambassador in moscow glad to move that forward because people on the ground are hard-working and hard-pressed to speak out and engaging. >> are you aware we are
suggesting you look at those magnet ski sanctions quex. >> i am aware of that. >> what is the status quex. >> we have not responded yet we intend to. >> that letter was sent in july. >> and the people protesting are in prison i appreciate your words but actions speak louder thank you mister chairman. >> senator romney. >> i applaud the fact the president said we have been asleep at the switch for far too long china has been aggressively pursuing national interest we have not recognize that an taken action appropriately to push back while i think there's a lot more to be done with a strategy i applaud the fact we finally recognize we have not
been aware or recognize the level of intent so on the part of the administration regards to russia i say that because what you have described is a series of actions by russia that are extraordinarily alarming investing aggressively in the middle east with military personnel north africa and latin america with the world's worst actors they did violate the inf and you said they will increase the number of nuclear missiles they are making a major investment of the nuclear arsenal of new technologies and new weaponry they are
interfering in elections around the world here in the united states so what is the ambition or strategy your goal? what are they hoping to achieve for a company that has a declining population focusing domestically in our perspective trying to find ways to help their people improve their economy but instead they invest on weapon systems and interference. what is their objective cracks from our standpoint of the state department what is russia a strategy and objective cracks i will let you respond to that. >> i agree so much about what you said. we appreciate the support of the senate helping us get the legislation right but that's
part of a broader diplomatic strategy with law enforcement and the national pieces of the military elements as well. ask about the motivations russia seems to be striking out from its internal problems and wants to dominate the states around it as a buffer and they look for opportunities to demonstrate america is weak so they see openings or states could not be as strong as they could be. >> i recognize those tactics but what is their ambition to reestablish the russian empire or to become a superpower? are they looking to evade other neighbors to grab population from former soviet states to rebuild their population and economic power?
what are they hoping to accomplish quex. >> it is to restore their self-image as a superpower. >> i don't disagree with that at all it's actually quite significant as a national security strategy to call out both china and russia for those who are engaged in a great power competition with united states it's our obligation as stewards to make sure we protect those interest you are quite right of the shift of policy the same thing can be said about russia that the national security strategy of what it speaks to. it turns out unfortunately the end of the cold war did not
usher in that be nines security environment but that. we took a somewhat complacent approach and they work very hard at their own strategies as we have described in the national security strategy to take a revisionist approach now it's our challenge to make up for that time and adopt policies to help stabilize a deteriorating environment so we can find a stable and mutually prosperous way to coexist. >> i would suggest that goal of having a collaborative coexistence with russia is not something they are pursuing. they have very different intent and we need to be very clear eyed about their intent
that we develop a comprehensive strategy as well as ad hoc strategies to have a very dramatic strategy i'm not suggesting we returned to the cold war but develop a comprehensive strategy that gets them to be diverted from the course they are on because they are diverting from activity that is extraordinary and not in the interest of a peaceful world and that is my concern. thank you mister chairman. >> thank you for your service there is no way to unwind our policy against ukraine with those opportunities in the house and senate for what the policy has been in the past two ukraine but i thought it might be appropriate to just clarify what the policy is
currently toward ukraine. so ambassador hail, is it currently our policy to request investigations into an entity called out strike quex. >> know. >> is a currently our policy to ukraine to request investigations into connection between the former vice president and a company called burisma. >> not that i am aware of. >> is rudy giuliani and conversation? >> not that i am aware of. >> part of the defense of the president's actions will be those requests were appropriate and i think it's relevant since the uncovering of those demands have been made they are no longer part
of official us policy whether or not those actions were appropriate they would have been stopped but on another topic one of the ways to talk about our competition with russia is through a prism of asymmetric warfare they have capabilities we don't have it is always struck me that the choice some things they are willing to do we just are not from a moral standpoint but they are also capabilities they have we choose not to utilize in particular the way they use their energy resources and to win friends and adversaries we have chosen not to use ours in the same way but there are appropriate means we could provide more
direct assistance to countries in and around the periphery to make them energy independent. senator johnson, rubio and myself have legislation to set up a billion-dollar financing capacity in the federal government to help finance energy independence projects in and around the russia periphery. it strikes me as a way to close the gap without closing the private sector energy companies to throw around their weight that is integrated with security interest. do you agree there are ways we could increase the support and the way that they leverage their resources and we leverage ours quex. >> i agree very much with the thrust of your comments and part of that is making sure our allies have alternate sources of energy because we
don't want germany and others to be more dependent i myself have had multiple conversations in belarus and eastern europe hopefully to be a prominent partner. >> the secretary is quite right with the importance of energy manipulation strategic policy what we are doing not just promoting any type of particular energy alternative but we are working very hard to promote relationships with our partners around the globe to provide alternative free nuclear energy which serves
our strategic interest with the russian and chinese relationships which is too good to be true i'm not familiar with your particular bill but in principle to offer financing alternatives would be very hopeful. >> i think it is important on both sides of this committee. thank you mister chairman my time is up. >> let me start by thinking both of you for your service i will start with you because you are from cincinnati but ukraine.
after 2014 i had to see what was going on it was incredible russia chose to take it another direction to encourage political freedom and we needed to stand by them and we did that we refused to give them what they needed to defend themselves against russian aggression with also 3000 ukrainian soldiers have been killed and they needed the opportunity to defend themselves but in 2017 the trump administration did that and that should be noted. . .
>> i actually am not into position to speain aposition toe specific operational needs. we have certainly gone to the trouble and you quite correctly point out to try to help them in a very difficult situation but the russian aggression has put them in. i agree we've given something on the order of $1.6 billion in
various state and dod assistance that does include the tank systems. i believe there are more in the pipeline and congress has been notified of an additional move in that respect. to speak to precisely what they need next i can certainly -- >> i saw in your testimony 1.6 provided a list because there's been some information out there and again if you could give a sense of what is needed. talking about ukraine as you know, he's chosen to take the initiative in terms of a peaceful settlement of what's going on on the eastern border of ukraine and and crania that there is the normandy format such as france, germany, russia
coming up shortly to talk about this next week as i understand it. what is the u.s. government's position on the initiative to try to resolve the issues on the eastern border in this regard looking forward to the meeting. we think that you've found some considerable steps that have helped move towards a resolution on the problems. as you said before is still hot and we see an exchange of prisoners which is very welcomed the race returned a vessel that they received from the streets last year and they prepared a bridge that is very important for the local communications so we support this and definitely back the president and people of ukraine in this regard. >> it is a historical development as to why we are not
there. i don't have an answer for you but we are very closely matched up with the germans and french in this regard and we also talked to the uk and will be present during this process. there are discussions about trying to expand and we will keep you posted. >> you mentioned earlier in response to a question from senator cardin that you look at your proposal and i think that's important and i know sator murphy agrees we've worked on this over the years to try to ensure we have the ability to push out on the propaganda. can you tell us about that, i think she'andshe's taking the se right direction. what kind of capabilities we needed that we don't have and why are you asking for additional fun and? >> thank you for the support. they arwe are also very impressy her leadership.
as i understand that provides a coordination role. around 75 million is a lot of money and there is even more resources across to promote the messaging strategy so if you look at each of the budget you will see for helping to coordinate and make sure we are doing everything we can to counter the propaganda. >> my time is expired. this is largely affec largely ae countries and the baltics under enormous pressure so we are helping some of our allies. thank you mr. chairman. >> the treaty is due to expire in just over one year. presidents can extend the treaty by an additional agreement. russia recently said that they will additionally cover russia is only strategic nuclear systems that are reported prior.
the glide vehicle into the new icbm. why would he not extend a treaty with which russia is complying and which will continue to tap the new types of strategic forces? >> that is a decision that hasn't yet been made and is under consideration. as you indicated there may be some systems they are developing now that could be brought under the new start mac and to what degree it is extended i would qualify your statement in the sense that it can be extended by agreement but it could be extended for shorter period of time also. what we are giving in doing in g this as a policy question is to look at it through the prism of the broad agenda of arms control and in particular the president's objective of some type of a framework that will help us in the potential arms
race that is being triggered not just by russia at the chinese nuclear developments come in addition to all of the problems i mentioned with russia, being on track to at least double the size of its arsenal over the next decade or so so our hope is to find a framework to the enterprise and bringing those threats under control and we are approaching these in the prism of how to contribute to that power. >> so china has a fraction of the strategic delivery systems which the united states and russia have. >> and in existing agreements that can be extended which would then serve as a basis to begin to negotiate with the chinese, but if we cannot realistically bring china within an extension within a year, does it make sense for us to give up on this
extension so that we lose the benefits? >> i'm not suggesting that we are or what necessarily give up on the new start. >> are you saying flat out that you will not extend s.t.a.r.t.? >> what we are trying to do is bring both russia and china into an arms control framework that meets the challenges presented by their ongoing modernization as well as the pressures in the regional adventurism in placing -- >> it's highly unlikely as a time and energy logistical matter that we are going to be able to bring them in a period i period of time. if it expires, will the u.s.
inspectors be able to conduct on the ground inspections from both russia and deployed and long deployed strategic systems and wealthy have access to thousan thousands? >> if it were to expire and it would go to the verification protocols procedures. >> so we would lose that which is a huge breakthrough in terms of the on the ground inspectio inspections. i don't think that would be a step that would be advancing the national security. if it expires, wealth of strategic command be able to predict the future shape and size of the russian forces to inform how the united states configures its own nuclear force posture?
>> it will be possible to put some kind of an arms control these limits not just on the chinese but the russian forces. we don't reach an agreement well we lose the ability to see what's going on inside of russia and as a result, not being able to accurately anticipate the shape and size of the strategic force so that our own research development and ultimate deployment reflects the threat that they could be posing. >> there is certainly an ability that when the treaty goes away whether it is extended or not, we would lose.
it is even more important than what happens after the five years. we are on track with our modernization with quite a bit more money concerns among other things is because he handling nuclear arms race that could cost trillions of unnecessary dollars because we have missed the opportunity to have a negotiated resolution first fore russians which is obviously what the chinese deal with and we don't miss that if we don't take the opportunity, i think we will wind up with a deficit that is going to be ballooning because of a nuclear arms race.
thank you mr. chairman. >> i was the lead republican earlier this year that would ensure they made every effort to engage in the negotiations and whatever limitations were reached through those negotiations were adequate. we did address the issue that i will get to momentarily in the legislation, that i think i just heard you which is consistent with everything i have read that indicates russia is currently in compliance with the new start. >> they are with the central treaty limits. >> is there enough time to negotiate a renewal that's starting to become a concern because we are at the 15 month mark from when it will expire
and we are running out of time, so do you feel the same sense the words renewal? >> i think there's plenty of time to extend if the decision were taken. it isn't going to be particularly negotiated because it could be extended on its own terms and that could be done very quickly. >> but it sounds as though there are some reservations to the extension on account of the dynamic which i think is fair and why senator van hollen and i included that in our resolution so among other things, the legislation that we have put forth would require them to assess the impact that the removal or the extension would have on the actions whether we stay in or out, what might china do and what would the likelihood of chinese compliance with the
parameters, what would the likelihood of that be so we would want to consider the dynamic under this legislation. i hope this is something that the administration will study and report back to members of congress, irrespective of whether the legislation passes. is this something tha that someg studied right now? >> it's how the relationships between moscow and washington how they affect chinese behavior and vice versa. i think one of the challenges that we have trying to build future for th the arms-control enterprise and make it serve our interest and that national security is precisely to figure out how these dynamics work. we have templates from the cold war that our bilateral and those don't make sense.
>> you are mindful of it. our you conducting a formal assessment of chinese response to an extension or a renewal? >> i don't know if it would be fair to describe it as a fairly informal assessment and as you pointed out, it is a critical question. >> it would be both appropriate and right to conduct a formal assessment working with our best intelligence to try to come up with a probability of different chinese response is in the nature of those responses if they were a renewal or extension two over it seems that would be a responsible action to take. do you agree? >> it is very important, sir.
>> it is already being considered and it will happen that we bring all these questions together. >> is the formal settlement occurring? >> i don't know how well it would be to describe the process but it certainly is the question. >> is the written work being produced? >> as it relates to the topic we have been discussing the last few minutes we are working with the intelligence community and all relevant elements of the agency to make sure questions including but not limited to that are part of the principles are able to consider as they seek to make a decision on not just the extension but these questions of how best to pursue a trilateral arms deal. >> it sounds like at least if we can elicit from an intelligence community or the state department a formal assessment and perhaps a classified
briefing on the topic would make sense. to participate in the first of those in a different capacity to deputy secretary, department of state led to engage with the deputy foreign minister in geneva for the second of these engagements and we committed to doing another one for the second question of figuring out the time to hold that engagement. they are having discussions along these lines talking about strategic weapon related issues and an important way for us to be in touch with our russian
counterparts and hopefully understand each other better and lay the groundwork for whatever may come. >> thank you so much. i am way over time and i appreciate your service. >> assistant secretar secretaryt perfect that the u.s. has had more than 500 flights in open skies in russia since 2002 fax >> i don't know the exact number but i wouldn't be surprised. >> is it correctly for three timeto threetimes more than thee over the u.s.? >> i don't know the ratio. all parties to the treat treaty- >> just take my word for it. let me know if i'm far off. this is a little context between the two countries. deputy secretary sullivansaid that any decision to leave open
skies would require unanimous consent of the countries. do you share that understanding of the u.s. policy? >> i don't have the terms at my fingertips but i can certainly say that there has been a lot of speculation. as mark twain is reported to have said they are greatly extra mutated. >> for the nuclear security at this point. >> it does make contributions to that of our partners and what we are givin doing is undertaking a review of the merits of the continued participation and no decision has been made to get out. >> secretary pompeo, in response to a question i asked said any extension would have to take
into account new systems and new actors by the conversation. the weapons are in such a big issue because you have two systems that the russian foreign minister said they already agreed with be covered, the vanguard and the new heavy icbm that they are building. there are two that went int woue deployable until the next decade so those we don't worry about too much in this distance it would be covered so although that sounds manageable it comes down to one system. the china peace that has been raised consistently they have approximately how many warheads?
about 300. would you say that as a part of the numbers flex >> i have seen much talk. >> how many do we have deployed? >> i should know that number. >> note that number. >> it's about 1750. several thousand more, but the point is 300 chinese warheads with their triad in the infant stage of development we have a very sophisticated triad and the strategic warheads that's a huge disparity. are we going to say that we have to resolve the architecture between china in this program and u.s. and russia with a
larger sophisticated program in order to extend? >> it's important that we be engaged with russia and china that is trilateral for the arms-control because if we cannot do that we will run up against the same problems. >> do you think of the u.s. coming down to the number of 300 were given permission to come up to the u.s. number 1750 deployed strategic warheads are you advocating an increase? >> what you advocating they come down to the chinese level? >> you have to argue for one or the other, for us to come down or china to come up or if you think they would agree to differential numbers locking
them into a lower number. to pursue the cap precisely in order to stop what could be a dangerous arms race. >> i really am disturbed if in order to take into account you have one or three options you either have to argue we are going to put on a cap china is going to be able to come up to that we are going to come down to what you think you can walk into differential that they would agree to, those are the three options and you haven't said you support any of those three and you say we are just a year out from the end of the initial and there haven't been serious negotiations to figure out which of the three options i don't like the three of them myself. >> those kind of questions are just the kind of thing that we need to be and should be talking about with our russian and chinese counterparts to engage
on finding a future that manages these challenges effectively. >> you haven't engaged in those conversations yet and i know from the past negotiations it can take many years to work out details when there are fairly uniform relationships between the two powers and this is closed over time but i think what we don't want to see is china used as an excuse to blow up the existing agreement with russia that contributes to international security and of course in the nuclear realm, that is important to our survival. >> thank you. in understanding this is an open setting regarding the open skies
treaty, can you talk about the disparity, the issues that russia has caused as far as not allowing access and why that is causing difficulties with where we are. >> we first found russia to be in noncompliance in the summer of 2017. but that was the first time we decided to declare them. the things he had been doing at that point and in many cases are still doing our things they had been doing continuously since they came into force in 2002. we found them to be in compliance with certain overflights. enclaves they invaded and carved off the country of georgia and
maintaining their by proxy forces and we found them to be selective in not allowing the russian military exercises. all these things amount to a situation which they've been not in compliance with some of the obligations and a selective noncompliance with other open skies obligations. this causes concerns quite naturally. >> and it going levels the playing field. >> that is a challenge and a question. it has not gotten to the point that we have declared we feel that to be a material breach but there have been breaches and there are things we very much hope russia will turn around. we are looking at the situation day by day. >> the federation is invaded its neighbors georgia and ukraine
and the regime of bishara al-assad and enemies of afghanistan and engaged in active warfare against the democracies including meddling in the united states election. russia is also responsible for the downing in malaysia and the chemical attacks in salisbury united kingdom in 2018. clearly an adversary of the interference in 2016 and they continue to do that in 2020 and other democratic elections around the world as well. i believe they should be designated a state sponsor of terror to join. this committee has been working on a number of bills stopping the activities from the russian act we have offered to establish whether or not they fit the
criteria to declare a state sponsor of terror under the u.s. law. they've built to put together but obviously it creates economic political and diplomatic pressure on russia in order to respond to the interference in the democratic process and the aggression against ukraine in the streets as well. the diversification act that many of us have worked on that would authorize a billion dollars to help finance the public and private investment in european energy projects to help the russian energy assets. so, we know that they separate terrorist groups and they carried out the actions we've carried. we know they funded insurgencies around the world. the interfere in the democratic elections and have been found to be responsible for chemical attacks. do you believe that the state sponsor of terror?
>> the state department has not at this stage determined russia as a state sponsor of terroris. there's a fairly complex deliberative process for doing that and we look forward to sharing information and working with you and other members of the committee. based on these discussions do you think that they would fit the criteria? >> i agree on the behavior. i don't personally see that per se as a state sponsorship of trigger rhythm of a terrorist attacks. but they are supporting very closely in some places we have
seen in 2016 the reports based on the build up in the military that they could sweep the baltics in less than 60 hours. secretary, has that analysis changed to any degree to the other developments we have seen in europe? >> i'm not an expert on the matters but i can tell you we are very concerned about the defense of all of our nato allies and the vulnerable states that have done a great deal to bolster their defenses and to increase the troop presence and other instruments. >> when it comes to the actions of our european allies, but actions have they taken when it comes to the continued
aggression? >> job number one is to increase defense spending with a pledge of 2% we also are very focused on the vulnerabilities of the eastern flank of nato if i can put it this way. they are relatively new democracies in the very, very vulnerable to the intimidation and tactics to use corruption and access to media to undermine the society from within. we have seen the sniper attacks and other interference that has been quite dramatic so we want to boost defenses as well which is more complex than the military response to excus coull the tools they talked about. >> thank you very much, senator. thank you both for being here.
in your opening statement, you talked about progress tha the pt has been made in the nuclear tensions and i've listened to the back and forth about the treaty. did you support an extension of the treaty? >> i would support it if i concluded it was the most effective way to contribute to the goal of bringing both china and russia into a framework and that is a question we are considering right now. >> did i understand you to say we look for opportunities and areas of mutual agreement where we can work with russia on something? >> yes we try to keep them open and find ways to work together on the shared interest. >> hasn't vladimir putin suggested that this is one area that he would like to see the negotiations resume? >> i believe they have made that clear and by the actions rather than their words tha but they wd like to continue in uninterrupted military buildup.
>> i'm not asking about that. i appreciate the amount uninterrupted buildup and that is something that we want to allow it to continue to happen as we look for ways to prevent that but i'm asking about this. can we move forward at the same time we are looking to negotiate to include china and other nations that may be a concern in terms of nuclear weapons we would determine that if it were to meet the long-term objective. >> so what is the long-term concern about doing that? because that would give us more
time to actually negotiate a broad agreement that would include china and could potentially look at other areas where there are weapons that we might want to include in the treaty. so, why would we not want to continue the extension of the new s.t.a.r.t.? >> we are going over it right now. we don't have the decision from our principles just yet, but that is certainly one of the things before then. >> i would suggest, i would align with the comments of senator murphy that this is a red herring to suggest we can't do anything about it without including china and some of the other issues. so, i would hope that we would look at how to best move forward and continue the progress that's been made and other ways to negotiate a broad agreement.
i continue to be very concerned about the repercussions of the decision to withdraw the troops and what that means in terms of increasing the influence in the middle east. can you talk about what the withdrawal has done to strengthen russia's position in syria? >> we do still have troops of course present. there's been an adjustment in the agreement that was reached in october. >> but the potential to influence what's happening in that part of syria, have we tried to do that? >> we have the ambassador handling these matters and and they've had intensive discussions with the counterpart
and i have as well and i'm sure the secretary has engaged as well. we believe that these absolutely must stop and we will not be able to cooperate well with the russians unless they do so. >> is that the only leverage we have is to sa say we are not gog to cooperate unless you stop bombing? >> i was talking about not propagating in the case of syria. there's a wide range of tools. that's part of the benefit of having sanctions if they know that is a potential avenue that we may go down. >> we haven't suggested that that would be an option if they continue. >> i haven't had that discussion myself, senator. >> so, the president was just in afghanistan and one of the things he suggested as he was planning to resume talks with the taliban. do you know if there have been any discussions with russia either with respect to syria or
afghanistan about the potential role that they can play in helping to address that resurgence s.? >> the ambassador as i mentioned both talked to the russian counterparts intensively about this. we would like to see stronger cooperation not just in defeating helping the political process needed to stabilize since they don't have the opportunity to regroup and develop so that's the essence of the approach. >> and what has the response been? >> less than ideal. they haven't offered the kind of support we would expect. >> and when we had a presence, they were not engaged full-blown and if they were also not helpful in that effort particularly. >> they were not. again, as we think about restarting the talks with the
taliban, do you have any sense of what to discussions there will be around at the resurgence of the growing presence of isis in afghanistan and what they will be asking the town of entity with respect to buy this? >> i don't want to give in to classified informatio informatit they offer generally that this is a growing concern in the source of alarm. i wa was ambassador the ambassan over my last assignment and we were ringing the alarm bells and i think effectively. we need to make sure all elements prepared to come to the processor focus on the problem as well. >> thank you mr. chairman and ranking member. i hope he would conside you woua classified hearing to discuss the potential in any negotiations in the taliban in afghanistan. i think that is a huge threat we need to be concerned about. >> i agree with that and we will
talk about that in a briefing. >> thank you so much. senator paul, you're next. >> ambassador, sanctions are intended to change behavior. for years we've been having sanctions to russia. can you name some specific that they've undertaken with regards to because of the sanctions? >> this is a work in process. we have not achieved the overriding objectives in terms of having russia withdraw from ukraine. certainly they continue to violate human rights, and we continue to see interference in our elections. >> are there specific changes that you can name? >> there may be a deterrence effect. it's going to take time as we know and when i it when it comeo sanctions regime's --'s >> for some specific behaviors we don't like and there is no indication that there's been any
change in their behavior. are there discussions with russia specifically saying if you do this, we will remove these particular sanction. is there a level of particular discussion with russia? >> i think they are well aware of what they need to do to get the sanctions. >> but no specific discussions on removing sanctions on the members coming here if you do this? >> i think in various conversations that may have been touched upon. >> this illustrates the problem it's easy to put the sanctions on and say we want to change the behavior but it hasn't seemed to be working. if it isn't working maybe we need to reconsider exactly what we are doing. we also put sanctions on the congress decides we know better than th the president so we are going to put can't take them off. do you think that makes it easier or harder to negotiate if congress puts on sanctions that the president doesn't have the means or the power to remove?
>> i think it makes it harder in most instances i think you put your thumb on a very important point which is the need of reversibility and flexibility. often the threat can be more than a sanction. the only time i can think of when the sanctions appear to work, and it's very obvious the president either putting on our threatening sanctions on turkey and then immediately when the behavior changed, removing the sanctions. i would argue the threat has leverage but once we placed them they have almost no leverage and we leave them on for decades and it doesn't appear anything is changing and in fact contrary to what people think, we may actually do the opposite. it may solidify that behavior because countries have their own sort of natural pride and once they get back up there likely are not changing. we are never going to do that in a result of it. some would say the sanctions worked in bringing it on to the table for the iranian agreement, but the contrary argument might be also that it finally came because we engage iran and
offered them something and they signed the agreement because they got something in exchange. i think as we look at the world we can think if we can talk about what to do, but there doesn't seem to be a lot of evidence of it working. there may also be the evidence that at least the argument can be made that sanctions were and are those such as the long-standing embargo with cuba may have the opposite intended effect and it seems like we would want to study these things because for decades they said basically your economy sucks and you have pooh-poohed because of the americans and because of the embargo. so i think that we ought to at least be open to the argument of whether the sanctions work and we ought to try to study whether they work. if we believe they are the way to go, we should also have an additional effort to say we want to have this talk with you about if you will do this, we will do this. some kind of extreme. the problem is like so many things we have, we start out with an unrealistic proposition.
select the proposition with russia when you leave crania, then we will consider relieving the sanctions. i think from my point of view it was wrong that they invaded crania and i don't agree with the polity. it's also unlikely to believe short of someone pushing them out of crania. if that is our point, they will stay on forever and essentially say simply that will have no effect. so i think we do need to look at if we believe the sanctions work we need to have negotiations with our adversaries and say if you do a we will do this. one minor thing that i've proposed and got virtually no support, i had to go to the committee to relieve sanctions on russian members of the legislature to travel here. it's like we are sanctioning diplomacy. i was the only vote for allowing them to come here but that is a small sanction that could be exchanged for something. there are things they want we could at least exchange little things for little things as opposed to doing everything for everything because i think as a consequence of thing happens
because our goals are too large and too unreasonable. you're response? >> we should be very thoughtful about how we impose sanctions under those that are targeted the better off we are. we agreed about the need to maintain flexibility and reversibility so we can and advise the targets to behave the way we want. that is the key. >> we have to negotiate how to unwind the >> i would make the general point we shouldn't look at the sanctions in the overall diplomatic strategy. >> thank you, senator. there are certainly some valid points made regarding sanctions. we have a tendency to reach for those quickly without the thought process sometimes that you need to go into them. having said all that, i think
it's stretching it a little bit to say how effective have they been because you can't measure something they didn't do in light of the fact that they were facing sanction so that's hard to do that on the other hand, i think that the more appointed they are in particularly the ability of the administration to be able to remove them when they want to is important. so thank you very much. >> thank you, ranking member menendez, and i would like to thank both of you, undersecretary assistant secretary for your service to the country and for your testimony here today. russia undeniably attacked about elections in 2016 and has every intention of doing so again according to director after the fbi and national intelligence and has been confirmed in response to the earlier questions from senator menendez as universal said in your opening testimony, moscow engages in the electio electiond
complex resource operations directed by the highest levels of the russian government. i agree. he went on to say that it is the sensual for developing a long-term response. two weeks ago, doctor fiona hill of the council testified before the house intelligence committee that the russian intelligence services have in fact been promoting a false narrative that ukraine interfered in the 2016 election and you previously told senator menendez in response to this question and you are not aware of any evidence that ukraine interfered in the 2016 election. would you agree as you said in the opening that understanding the russian threat requires them to be clear that there is no evidence of ukraine having interfered? >> i guess i do, senator. >> have you seen any intelligence assessment or any open source reporting that would support the idea that ukraine interfered in the 2016 election?
>> i've seen nothing credible along those lines. >> are you aware of any diplomat or executive branch official that is asserting publicly that ukraine interfered in the 2016 6 election? >> any diplomat. >> anyone other than president trump. >> that's correct. >> if an american politiciais af either branch repeats this russian disinformation effort into this falsely ukraine, not russia and interfered in the election, does that promote or diplomatic interest of national security? >> welcome it as a free country. people can debate any ideas that they want. but our focus at the state department has been as it should be on the proven russian interference in the 2016 elections and plans to do so in 2020. >> would it be in the interest of securing the 2020 election to continue distracting the american public and american legislators from data demonstrated intent to
interfere? >> i've said i see no credible evidence about the allegations in ukraine, so i can't as a foreign policy our focus isn't there it is on the russian problem. >> on the appropriations committee i worked with senator leahy and colleagues on both parties to secure an additional 250 million this year in the election security funding in the appropriations bill that isn't yet passed the house and senate. senate. this would prevent future cyber attacks against the machinery. do you think that is a wise domestic investment in our own election security? and do you think we should be doing not just that with more to secure democracy here in europe against the russian aggression? >> i'm not familiar with the details of the legislation but i believe firmly that we need to do everything we can to detour and as necessary defend against the attacks at home and with our allies. >> as you've heard from many senators today, we agreed russia needs to pay a price for attacking it for the annexation
of crania, ongoing support for the separatists in ukraine, undermined democracy in europe, separating the united states from nato and the support for the regime of bush are all solid and the list goes on. one area of interest to me where russia recently stepped up the brazen and exploited activities in africa strengthening ties with african countries is one of the top foreign-policy goals. in october he convened more than 40 african heads of state for the russian led conference in sochi and they demonstrated their influence or attempted to influence recent elections in madagascar and congo and zimbabwe into the central african republic. last month i introduced the bipartisan sterilization act which would include sanctions on those involved in the russian intervention and would require the administration's strategy to push back against russian actions in libya and according to the recent public reports, there's literally hundreds of russian mercenaries now in
libya. what is the state department doing to address or limit the russian influence and after that in libya and some of the other countries i mentioned? >> it is a topic of our discussions with the russian officials. i don't think that the dialogue is producing or yielding results that are not necessary for the national security and more significantly, it is to point to the policy towards africa and african states. we are trying our best to make sure that the relationships with africa are well maintained and that we are promoting u.s. business there and we are also increasing our assistance levels so that u.s. business can be participating in the economic growth and development in the countries. i think that's a very important area and also the cooperation in areas like security that's very important in the matter. i would see the strategy is of course to try to do what we can to bring about a cease-fire and compliance with various security council resolutions so that they
stabilize anything while we have been turning a spotlight on the presence of there in the various statements most unsatisfactory. >> i see my time is expired. >> i look forward to working to keep an open line of communication because they continue t to cooperate and stad up to the aggression against our upcoming elections is important for the future. you said a moment ago in response to senator coburn's focus on the russia problem. i would focus on two areas where the administration can do
better. very negative and it would create another tool to use the energy resources. as you know we are at the precipice stood in place denmark gave the final approvals to complete the final portion. my understanding is roughly 60 days away from the completion of the pipeline. it is now or never. as you know, i offered bipartisan legislation in the committee that passed committee by an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 20-to to stop the pipeline. it's specifically to prevent those that can lead the pipeline pipeline from laying the
pipeline. some hope that the senate even in this bizarre partisan time will manage to work together. there's been considerable progress perhaps passing that legislation as a part of the national defense authorization act. i'm hopeful that will happen and i'm grateful for the assistance of the chairman and ranking member to trick to make that happen. i think that it would be an enormous partisan victory for the senate and for the united states. thatbut, that being said, at thd of the day, we don't need to pass the legislation to stop the pipeline. the administration has full authority to impose the same sanctions that would result in shutting down the ships in the pipeline. why has the administration not acted? >> we are using the tools to take the goal of stopping the project.
the administration shares -- >> has it succeeded max >> we have slowed it down but we haven't stopped it. >> is there any prospect or a snowballs chance in hell of talking to the german ambassador is suddenly going to somehow magically stop the pipeline? >> we have a range of leadership engagements that are withholding. there is a deliberative time about the options are if we come to the conclusion that the diplomacy hasn't achieved the goal of the sanctions are among them. >> let me give you a very clear message to take back to your colleagues, and i have had multiple conversations secretary pompeo and with the white house on this topic. >> time is of the essence. the strategy that is let's pursue our diplomatic options at this point is a strategy to do nothing. it is a strategy that will result with 100% certainty in the pipeline.
getting billions of dollars in the energy dependence on russia and weakening the united states position on the world. the administration can stop it. it is only inertia. there have been principled meetings and there have been sadly some bureaucratic intransigence. i think particularly for the treasury department pushing back against exercising clear statutory authorization to stop this pipeline, and i want this to be very clear. if the pipeline is completed, it will be the fault of the members of this administration who sat on their rear end and didn't exercise the power. there is overwhelming bipartisan mandate from congress to stop this applied. it is clear that it's achievable and it is a major foreign-policy to victory, and the only thing that would allow the pipeline to be built is bureaucratic inertia within the administration, so i very much hope that ends into
that you exercise the authority to stop the pipeline before it is completed next month. >> i want to turn for a second topic on russia. we are talking about the open skies treaty and you said something that i wrote down, because it startled me. this is verbatim it makes contributions to the security and to those of our partners. doctor ford, it's my understanding that the statement is directly contrary to the assessment of the department of defense and the intelligence committee. and in fact some specifics in 2015, then the director of the intelligence, defense intelligence agency under president obama told congress the open skies construct was designed for a different era. it allows russia to get incredible bases and ports and
gives a significant advantage. the head of stress, and 2016 to the commanders that it gives a capability to be able to reconnoiter other parts of the nation. the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff general dunford told, quote, we don't believe the treaty should be in place if the russians are complying. you'd hold uyou told the committ russia is in chronic noncompliance. we are allowing russia to fly over the united states to engage in reconnaissance for new york city, washington, d.c., we are making ourselves more vulnerable and we are gaining as i understand it's little to nothinit little to nothingbecaun the overflights we gain from our satellite technology and russia isn't complying. how is it in our interest that it benefits the military by exposing our differences while
not gaining serious actionable intelligence on the other side? >> those are some of the questions we are considering right now. when i see that there are some, that's true there are also clearly as you quite correctly point out some problems and concerns. i think the relevant question is between the benefits offered and the challenges that i they presd it's evaluating the weight of each of those elements on the scale that is the question we are trying to assess. the partners many of them seemed to feel strongly that there are confidence building benefits and diplomatic benefits that they feel strongly about and we need to take that into consideration. at the end of the day we do need to make a call as to how that works and there are elements on both sides. >> thank you.
>> thank you mr. chair and to both of you for coming. secretary, good to see you. i've seen you in a lot of real estate over the years. i want to begin with you. the title of the hearing is the future of u.s. policy towards russia. your testimony has a number of references, both written and verbal. so how about just start with a direct question. how important is it to the future of the space policy that nato remains strong? >> i would say that it's absolutely essential. it's been a cornerstone of our national security strategy since the 1940s and it is inconceivable that the world would be like if we had not developed the concept and continued to support it until today. nato has been a priority that has been very helpful to the united states in the battle of terrorism. so i take to your testimony that
nato remains very important and remains an important element of u.s. policy towards russia. would our allies see the same thing but a strong vibrant continuous nato is important in their own? >> i believe so. there may be variations of intensity. the closer you get to russia the more ardent of view is that i would support that. >> and i have no quarrel with the administration pressing the nato allies to not only feel the commitment and benefit from nato but also to contribute proportionately. i think that is a smart thing to do. i have a piece of legislation pending before the committee and a few months ago offered as an amendment to the energy related to go into the chairs request i hope that we may take it up in our next business meeting. it's a piece of legislation that would basically say this thomas would've been on no of nato's
70th anniversary to clarify that no president could unilaterally withdraw from nato that any withdrawal of the united states from nato that have to be accomplished either by a senate ratification, if the senate ratified the treaty, or through an act of congress. .. the legal authority and privileges of the executive branch playing. but in my meetings at any rate when nato allies, there is no alarm over the u.s. position, then focused on appropriate burden sharing -- >> how about the french president saying he viewed nato on being brain-dead concerns of
the united states backing away from nato. >> i don't want to characterize the french president -- >> he would not characterize that of an expression of an alarm? >> i would say he has legitimate concerns, we need to focus on nato future and make sure it's relevant. >> it's clear in our commitment. >> absolutely sir. >> i hope this piece of legislation which is bipartisan with send a strong message that the united states under any ministration under any congress of whichever party's dominance would be very committed to nato. there is a legal question that has been raised that takes the senate to ratify a treaty, nato was ratified by the senate in that way. the constitution is silent about exiting from treaties.
it makes pretty plain when the constitution is silent on something like that, congress is free to legislate. there is no barrier to congress legislating. so right now the situation without legislation is an ambiguity but congress can legislate and remove it and provide reinsurance to our allies. the 70th anniversary of the very important to your own testimony and others would agree, alliance, is my hope we would send that signal that a treaty entered into by the senate cannot be unilaterally discarded by any president. but it would require congressional action prior to it being withdrawn or the u.s. president being withdrawn. so just my colleagues i hope we can take that up at the 70th anniversary can send a strong message of importance of the alliance you continue to attest to to our allies. without a yield back. >> thank you both for being here.
i have been consistently and aggressively outspoken about threats posed by russia, i believe going back to october 2016 i was a candidate anabolic and would not, on the leaks are that it was a work of a foreign power then. but i was also fascinated how a nation and their tactical nuclear weapon in the strategic burden of the stockpile and so forth. but i find it fascinating if we take a deep breath, how can american politics has become by a nation whose gdp is equivalent to italy's in the state of new york and whose gdp is less then the state of texas and brazil and half the size of the state of california. and i thought there was a really important question earlier watching on the pragu broadcasth what their goal is, i want to do, one of the things americans don't fully appreciate or understand there's a lot of different ethnic groups within the russian federation and they
will always have friction internally domestically with a growing sense of injustice inequality. what you have in many ways and what we see around the world and what they try to do in the u.s. is vladimir putin and trying to position himself as a great historic unifier of all these different groups that you go back to 2014 in the invaded crimea and a high point in the public pulling because he built national unity around the in the argument to all the different groups in russia that he was the one and they all face the same threat from the west and he was the one bringing them together. and you see now many things is doing around the world that much of the policies and much of what he's doing is designed to remind people of a time when the soviet union and russia were great mobile powder under power. your much of anything else about distracting from the domestic problems that they face internally. isn't that a big amount of
significant driver at the end of the day, the desire to address the internal things and rally everyone around pride by distracting from the domestic policy and pretrade himself as indispensable leader in russia as a great power which they are not economically but they project power momentarily and smart crated ways that allow him to pull off the charade. >> yes senator, you said more eloquently what i tried to say to senator romney's question precisely that, this is a matter of russian russia's leader trying to leave the up to a self image in a global power to distract from the internal problems within russia that they are experiencing. >> i would imagine -- not that we should not look into things and talk about buttons so it would be my sense that he
greatly enjoys watching so much of american politics be about vladimir putin and consumed by it by the last two and half years. that makes argument does it not? >> it is consistent with what we know the russians are trying to go to social media to divider nation. >> i don't want to focus on those issues, member of the intelligence committee we spent two years looking at talking about it and was very good bipartisan report but we need to figure out in this country how to do two things, address the threats and pass a terror act which are put in place sanctions that would kick in given when russia were to do this again because i do think po putin is a cost-benefit analyzer and if the cost that way the benefits it would affect him. and i also believe to be conscious or aware of the ongoing effort, this is not a one-off effort on the part of the russians, this whole impeachment situation is playing out nationally and i will tell you that you can see, stand back
and watch how they are using this as a way -- the first thing we say america is completely dysfunctional and the second argument the eroding trust in democracy that does not work and they also viewed as an opportunity to damage our relationship with ukraine. i think the goal ultimately is to exacerbate our tensions which adds to the betrayal as dysfunctional and to argue that our system is corrupt, i think it's important as anything else, sometimes we get tunnel vision and think it's about supporting one singular individual, this is much bigger than that and it will be here loo much longer thn this is gone and to weaken us from the inside and get us to fight one another and dysfunctional, coming apart at the seams because it elevates him as a person in some ways has a smile every time he is playing because it strengthens argument
that he's a big global player. >> thank you, senator. senator mendez. >> thank you, mr. chairman. a couple of things, i agree with my colleague in france. the only thing i would say, if we harm ourselves more when we internally ultimately expels the essence of the russian propaganda. that to me is one of the most detriment to elements of what is been happening. secretary hale, on a different matter for the moment, i'm alarmed to have learned today that secretary pompeo may be considering changing the way in which the state operations center places and participates in calls with foreign leaders. i am concerned about the lack of transparency and record-keeping that may entail and keeping the
american public and congress in the dark at a time when we know that the president senior state department officials and others appear to carry out official u.s. government foreign policy on personal cell phones. i am not looking for an answer from you today but this committee needs to understand what changes are being proposed, how the department will maintain full and complete record and what the intent is behind what appears to be an effort to keep the american public, congress and others from knowing about or understanding of government communication with foreign leaders. i urge you to bring this back to the secretary because if there was ever a time that such an action would be dose concerning it is right now. >> i am not aware of any
proposed change tour policy, the secretary in london but i understand your concern in question and i will take you back to the secretary of state and will get back to the committee. >> i appreciate that. very briefly, secretary ford, you repeated something earlier in response to the chairman's first round of questions that the tractors repeatedly bring up that russia's new exotic nuclear systems and how the treaty may not contain these systems are in issue. but you must be aware that russia has already stated that two systems the icbm and hypersonic glide vehicle will fall under new start, is that not true? >> i believe the russians have said that and hopefully that indeed turned out to be the case, there would still be three systems that would not be covered in that respect a hen
fact we cannot imagine that the new systems will not be covered, here are two that the rushers have agreed to it if you don't explore in a negotiation what is willing to be covered then i don't think you can dismiss it out of hand. for the reports indicate the other systems of concern likely will not even reach deployment during the lifespan of new start even if it's expended. so i joined the echo of concern that several of my carved legs have on the china angle, china is dramatically under the u.s. ability in a nuclear arsenal, so seeking to include them creates a real dilemma in terms of what senator murphy pointed out and secondly suggesting that russian
systems are a reason not to continue new start is also alarming when we've seen that they've agreed to two and maybe when pursuit might agree to others. i would urge the ministrations at looking at new start in a totally different way and i think that even some of our allies that just to do so. the me ask you something else. egypt is reportedly planning to purchase jets, you had meetings with the egyptian to persuade them for making this purchase? >> i cannot speak about any specific information we may or may not have about a particular potential russian arm transaction. i say we been happy --
>> i know about it so why are we talking about it, what's the big hush it's in the public realm. >> we been very active around the world including the departments among them egypt making clear that helping them understand the potential for section 231 section exposure and had conversations on making the points about the importance of the law in avoiding the exposure as well as elsewhere and these are the engagements that we have been successful having around the world and essential in the diplomacy to turning off or persuading billions of dollar dollars -- i'd like to get a classified briefing if you will not answer on public and other items as to where it is that we are pursuing other entities of the world. you been given all the authorities of the arms control and international security, is
that correct. >> on the 21st of october secretary pompeo delegated to me the authority and responsibility of that yes. >> okay, here's an example, you have not been nominated for such position, this appears to be another case of the state department playing the rules in hopes that no one will notice in order to do that you should be nominated for the position and if you were nominated under the law you would be allowed to serve for only 210 days. so this is another concern i have for the state department acting in ways that seek to circumvent the oversight and jurisdiction of this committee. it is not acceptable. >> i would say there is no intent to circumvent anything and what there is is a recognition of the importance of not having those important duties being gapped. >> i agree with you, nominate
somebody but at the end of the day don't circumvent the committee. you think that were asleep at the switch. we are not. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> we have a couple of minutes left on the boat. >> thank you very much we did start a vote. fortunately the floor tolerancing on boat seems to be very expensive as long as determined -- >> we have another important matter which is the picture of the committee. >> all try to make this as quick as i can. i want to get to russia intention in regard to ukraine. we knew the occupation of crimea was happening eastern ukraine falls into russia playbook to see the unity in europe and prevent ukraine from fully integrating or applying for nato membership, we know that and we also know with many questions during this hearing that the
press accounts of ukraine being involved in our election which is been stoked by some individuals, and works into russia's playbook even though there are no plaques at all for the security people in intelligence committee diplomacy that ukraine was involved in all in the 2016 election. i want to get to how we proceed with the peace talks. we first had protocols in russia was very excited about that which is never complied so i'm not sure exactly what their intentions are. we now have the steinmeyer formation and i would like to get from secretary hale, your thoughts about how were proceeding -- is russia winning this debate on how we will resolve conflict in ukraine by developing a formula that will
ignore the occupation of crimea and establish a tom any for eastern ukraine with still keeping ukraine as a divided country, is that where we are headed? what is going on in this proce process. >> we are united with our allies in europe and of course with the leadership in ukraine to get the russians out of ukraine. crimea is part of ukraine in eastern ukraine as part of ukraine, that's objective. and we call for immediate entity to get this occupation. our focus, several initiatives as you said and it's good that the normandy process is resuming after a long period where there was nothing happening. we'll see what comes on the ninth of december. i don't want to predict something that has not fully formed yet. but we've also seen president zelensky has with some success been able to engage in dialogue with the russians for attention.
but we need to see much more on the security front prior to any political activity if related to the pits of the heart of the occupation. >> as it relates to the steinmeyer formulation that was recently released, it looks like ukraine is following that in russia seems to be excited about that at least from what we have been told, are we assured that we are not going to end up with some type of legitimacy with russian crimea. >> we will never accept that. >> i appreciate that. i thank you have a lot of support in congress for that position. obviously we'd like to ease the tensions wherever we can so that's a positive step but as we've seen russia does not play by any organized playbook of fairness on each side, their objective is to keep us divided. so it's hard to imagine that there will be any process that does not extend the division of
ukraine. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you very much. thank you to both of our witnesses we appreciate your service to the country and we appreciate your testimony. i will enter supplemental materials to the record and information in the record will remain open until the close of business friday and the witnesses can respond rapidly to those we would greatly appreciate. without the committee is adjourned. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
the presiding officer: the senator from georgia. mr. isakson: madam president, i ask unanimous consent to be able to address the senate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. isakson: thank you, madam president. it's an honor to be here today on what's not my last day but everybody is acting like it. a few months ago i had to an -- announce that after much consideration to be able to serve the people of georgia, when i knew i couldn't do the job i was going to quit and