tv U.S. Policy in Iraq CSPAN July 27, 2014 2:46pm-3:31pm EDT
we are all iraqis, these are all our people to stand against isil. bishop warda is focused on the refugees that left mosul and he has asked us for some specific help with the kurdish regional government to ensure they have the protection they need. that is something we followed up with president barzhani to make sure they do have that protection. it is a very serious situation. it reveals what is happening to christians in mosul, reveals what isil is all about, and why it is such a threat to the region and to us. >> again, we should feel deeply since the united states stands so strongly for religious liberty, we should feel deeply about the persecution of any religious minority. mass has been said in mosul more than 1800 years. that's been broken. weekly mass has not been celebrated there. that is a pretty significant thing. i have been critical of us, the senate, for slowness in
ambassadorial approvals. i'll put one on the administration. you've got to get us names. i'll say this for the record. ambassador at-large has been vacant since october 2013. the white house has not sent us a name, at a time in the world whether it might be whether it may be christians or jews in some nations that are suffering because of the persecution of religious minors. while the u.s. is an example of religious diversity, we see the persecution of minorities probably on the increase in the world, it's a core value of ours. we have such a good story to tell. that should not be a position that is vacant. >> i'd like to focus on the role of energy resources in the conflict with isis and in the iraqi leadership's struggle to maintain a workable, political
situation. isis conditions to have its eyes set on beijing. smuggling this oil into the black market has reportedly brought isis perhaps a million dollar as day. with the group taking on an actual state, how does capturing energy resources fit into their broader strategy? >> they need the resources to survive. one reason they are coming with everything they have at the beijing refinery is they need the energy resources stored in those tanks in order to keep mosul going. this has been going on for a month. there's a unit of iraq's counterterrorism forces there, people that we know and who have been trained and are fighting
incredibly heroically. isil has sent a wave of suicide bombers at the refinery. so far, the iraqis have been able to hold it although it is a struggle. isil needs these resources, as you said, to be able to build -- >> what further steps need to be taken in order to protect against isis taking over the bajee refinery? that's the largest single refinery in the court. what can be done, what needs to be done in order to prevent that from happening? >> well, in fact, as i mentioned briefly and i answered some of senator mccain's questions, one of the first places they were deployed was around the refinery. they began to clear out some of the attacking isil fighters. that is one example. and as we continue to assess the situation in iraq, we have identified particular strategic
sites that we're concerned about and we want to make sure that the iraqis are able to defend them. >> let me move on to the kurdish regional development that. the kurds are sitting on an estimated 45 billion barrels of oil and have captured the oil fields around kirkuk and appear to be intent on selling their own oil abroad without the exports through the central authorities in baghdad. and baghdad seems unwillingly to equitably export the oil resources. how can we help the iraqi government to better manage its energy resources and preserve a federal system that works for all iraqis? right now that seems to be collapsing and the collapse is over and the oil revenue issue, how can we play a bigger role? >> well, this is something where we can play a direct role and it's one reason we had to get through the election and start to get a new government formed
so we can get some traction. the numbers tell a story. the kurds need about $14 billion in order to sustain themselves. their own exports right now, they approach a little less than half of that probably. that will change over the future. the budget that is pending in baghdad before the parliament is a $144 billion budget. the kurdish shared that would be a little more than $17 billion. the numbers tell the story for how we can work out a deal. again, there are new realities on the ground that we have to deal with. but it is in the interest of all iraqis to export as much oil as possible under a revenue sharing framework, particularly for the sunni areas of iraq that don't have any of these resources and that's the type of government that particularly the new parliament which has proven to be very effective and they have set up a committee to resolve this can get some traction on. but we have to be actively engaged. without us, they won't get there. >> again, oil is always at the
core of this, you know, you just keep sharing the oil? that's what it is about? that's why the british wanted the country constructed the way it was, they nt wawanted the oi resources even though it was going to cause longer term stability. that's what they were fighting for. that's what they were demanding for in those negotiations 80 years ago, 90 years ago, and we're still living with the consequences of those decisions. so let me move on and ask, what is the current relationship between al qaeda and isis? what has happened in the course of the last three or four months? >> well, it's my understanding that al qaeda and iraq wa zaharie's group. when it moved into syria, it split into two groups.
the al nusra front. there were ambitions between iraq and syria and that's something that senior al qaeda leaders, such as al za here ree said isis should work in iraq and that's what led to the split. but isil was proving to be more effective in terms of developing a state structure than even core al qaeda. that's why it's more than just a terrorist organization. it certainly does not have a the global reach for al qaeda but it has the sophistication to develop what is really becoming a state-like sanctuary for a global jihadi movement. and they are trying to recruit those who share the ideology from all over the world. >> so what does that competitive dynamic between the leaders of
both groups lead to? >> the risk, in terms of the competition, they will look to in order to do spectacular type attacks. >> and i think you've already answered the questions about recruiting. let me ask a final question. that's about the iraqi forces capacity to defend its own civilians. can you just give us a brief summary of where you believe they are right now in accomplishing that goal? >> well, one reason i said in my testimony, we have a counterterrorism challenge. iraq has a counter insurgency challenge meaning that they have to control their own population and that is why they have to recruit locally and work with tribes to control local areas. right now that has really broken apart. it's broken apart for a number of reasons but primarily for the fours that iforce that isil was able to bring to bear.
they go after anybody who disagrees with them. so this is why we have to work with the iraqis to be able to protect their population against the most violent groups. and then work on the political compact to make sure that all areas of iraq have the resources to sustain themselves. >> again, i want to commend you for your focus upon diplomacy. i agree that it's not too late for diplomacy but we just have to be in intervening in a very, very aggressive way to make sure that diplomacy is truly given a chance to be successful. thank you so much, thank you mr to have you speak beginning with ambassador jeffrey. ambassador jeffrey, welcome. >> thank you very much. to follow up on what we heard this morning, the establishment of the islamic state by the isil
in iraq and in syria is changing the geo strategy of the entire middle east and represents a dramatic setback to u.s. policy and interest and requires an immediate response from washington. the situation is complicated by the fact that in the fix we are presently in in the middle eefs, we have not one but two higomonic voices in the region, from gaza to iran, that are trying to upset the middle east. and we have to deal with all of them in a comprehensive way. the president's plan to support a unified iraq in this crisis is laid out on june 19th is reasonable. but over a month as gone by, as we discussed earlier today, and little has happened. we've had two important but secondary ste secondary steps, the selection
of a speaker and those are important but those are preliminary. the key issue is the election of a prime minister and a new government. meanwhile, on the ground, while the initial drive of isil has been slow, we're seeing more capabilities for that institution. the study of law came out with a survey of attacks, both suicide and what we call vbids, vehicle bombs inside baghdad in efforts to try to cut off the city. senator mccain was right, that you can't take baghdad but as almost happened to us with over 100,000 troops in 2004, you can't isolate the city and they seem to be trying to do that. meanwhile, they are pushing along the kurds along the 400 mile front to the eye rare general border and north of mosul and they are trying to
seek strain fruk tur: we talked about the dam west of ra maddie and to the northeast of mosul. these are extraordinarily important infrastructure targets for them. the president's plan is based upon, above all, a new inclusive government. and as i said, while we've done the preliminaries with the speaker and with the president, we haven't gotten to the key issue of who is going to governor the country because the prime minister essentially governors the country. in my view, the inclusive government that the president has correctly said is a prerequisite to any real action cannot be a government headed by prime minister maliki. he has not shown the ability to bring in the kurdish and the sunni communities. and that is needed right now because there's a huge division of both trust and geographic
division in the country today. we need to reinforce the kurds to remain within the public and try to regain trust among the sunnis. again, i see this as only possible if we have a new prime minister in a new government. simultaneously, i think that while the president is right, that we cannot do a major campaign until we get an inclusive government and provide essentially people on the ground, local forces, we need to do limited strikes. as general dempsey talked about some of the possibilities going after key leaders and strategic infrastructure, we need to do that now to encourage everybody to come together. mr. mcgurk talked about the sunni tribes trying to fight isis but they are outgunned. helping them would not be undercutting a new government. the kurds are fighting along the front and they need help. we heard about these highly
trained effective iraqi units north of baghdad. they could benefit from help, too. we're striking al qaeda right now in pakistan, yemen, and with direct actions at times in somalia and libya. i see no reason why we couldn't, if we're getting the data now, start doing some strikes both in iraq and in syria. meanwhile, we have to be ready, though, if this doesn't work out, if the eiranians remain influential, if maliki remains in power, we have to figure out how we're going to deal with three separate entities, effectively a taliban-like islamic state in the middle of lchl evant and iraq is under the influence of iran. that's a huge new problem for us if we don't act very, very
quickly. my bottom line here today, sir, is we need to act as quickly as we can. >> thank you, ambassador jeffrey. general barbaro? >> thank you for the opportunity to discuss this situation in iraq and moving forward. first, i'd like to start with several observations on the current situation. while we assess, they maintain the momentum, they grow stronger and their hold on the population intensifies. i isis has established an area in both syria and iraq. it must be considered as an iraq/syria front. isis poses a formal regional front. what is most frightening as they swept into iraq, they continued their expansion into syria. they did not have to thin the lines to do that.
the iraqi security forces have regrouped. however, these forces have serious fundamental flaws and will require significant assistance to be able to undertake counteroffensive to dislodge and roll back isis' control and finally, it's a threat to both baghdad and the kurds. the kurds have a border or front with isis and they are largely on their own. chairman menendez asked at the outset, what is require to turn back the tide of isis and while it's clear it's the iraqi security forces but my estimation is in the present state they cannot meet this threat, let alone a major and counter effective threat without assistance. the capabilities necessary did not exist today in iraq and will likely not materialize on their own. and i'm not talking in the future about ground combat forces from the united states. i'm talking about advising and assisting in certain key areas. and let me cover those.
the first is intelligence. we started that. developing tactical intelligence on the ground. we started that and now we need to turn that into action. but the second intelligence component is the isis network in iraq, syria, and their regional supporters must be a national collection and analysis priority for our entire intelligence community. second, we should establish a training program for the isf to provide sufficient arms capability in order to effectively conduct offensive operations to dislodge isis from the areas that they now control. the isf has largely been a checkpoint army. since 2011, their operations have been defensive in nature, static in disposition, and disjointed in execution. they need training. third, they need assistance in establishing an effective war time process. their existing one is a peace time system and they've experienced equipment decline
and readiness over the years and this will be a daunting process but it can be done. fourth, the required changes to the demand and control network. as we know, the system put in place has been put in place by al maliki, systems directly reporting to him. there needs to be changes in commanders and changes to develop an effective combat command and control capability. fifth, the isf continues to need weapons and equipment. we have done some good work to rush some equipment there but we need to do more. just this week, iraq's ambassador to the united states lamented the slow space from iraq and russia. we should improve material to iraq. sixth, we should support the isf with air strikes in order to degrade isis' capability. you cannot drone strike or air
strike your way out of this. it must be a counter offensive in order to attack isis. seventh, we should support the kurds and enable them to defend themselves against isis. they are slightly armed and underequipped. they are stretched very thin and when isis turns on them, they will be outgunned and over matched. there's a complex relationship between baghdad and irbil. i understand that. why wouldn't we prevent the oil rich north from falling into isis' hands. finally, this falls on a willing partner in baghdad that is willing to accept these changes and to help develop an effective i schl f. second, as we all discussed, there must be a political
climate where the sunnis and kurds feel that accommodation for them and they can join in a unified military action. in conclusion, it the stronger y become and if the controlled iraq is in national interests of iraq, we should enable iraq and the kurds to defeat them as soon as possible. >> thank you. >> thank you, chairman. mr. chairman, senator, it's a great hon for to appear before this committee. i want to start by talking about some of the realities that we face in iraq because i think they are critical in understanding where we are and what the possibilities are going forward. first, we need to recognize that american influence in iraq has aten waited very significantly to the point where i would argue at this point that the united states' interests exceed our
influence. and second, we need to come to grips with the fact that what we face in iraq today is a civil war. iraq is not on the brink. it is not sliding into it, it is a civil war and the dynamics of civil wars now apply and those make intervention by third powers very difficult. with that in mind, i think that the current approach of the administration with a few tweaks is probably the best one plausible. it is the only one. and that is the idea of forging a new political leadership and it's the only option that we have that does offer the prospect of ending iraq's civil war in a matter of months rather than years. and preserving american interests in a whole variety of ways. nevertheless, we need to recognize that it will be very difficult and it goes well beyond merely replacing the current iraqi political leadership. it is going to mean restructuring iraq's politics in a way that will encompass the
desires, aspirations, and fears of all of iraq's communities and that is not going to be easy. if it fails, iraq's civil war is going to roll on and, as i've already suggested, the dynamics of a civil war is going to take hold and those are very hard to break. but we will have some options. unfortunately, those options are all awful. i think the first one is to recognize as any number of us, some of the senators have made the point earlier that iraq and syria are now a single civil war. and the problem that we'll face in iraq is that we will have a very complex situation, we will be looking to support both moderate sunnis and shia against their extremists and hoping to fchl orge a new peace between them. that's very hard. syria offers clarity in that we hate the regime and are not willing to support them at all and that opens up a syria first policy by which we build a new
syrian opposition party which can defeat the extremists and stabilize a bridge and a model to sunni moderates inside of iraq. i see that option as entirely feasible but it is not guaranteed to work and it is several steps beyond what the united states has been willing to consider so far. in fact, it will take years, if it works at all, and it will require a commitment of resources, probably including air power that the u.s. has so far been unwilling to make. if we're not willing to commit those -- that level of resources to actually bring the civil war to a close, another option is partition, something that has been talked about very frequently. i will say that i think that if we don't bring this to a rapid close, we will find that partition is the de-facto outcome in iraq. it will be divided into a sunni stand and shia stand and the kurds will undoubtedly go their own way. the question for us would be,
can we find ways to turn de-facto partition and somehow use it to bring about peace. again, i think that's problem but nevertheless, it will be extremely difficult. far more difficult than the pundits around town are making it out to be. i would say that if there's a dangerous mythology suggesting that the partition of iraq could be easy and relatively bluntless. in fact, the communities remain intermingled and the different militias have made claims on territory held by the others. the fear that overwhelms iraqis remain and dividing up the oil and water and other resources is going to be extremely difficult. it will take years and hundreds of thousands of lives lost. and the last alternative that we will have will be to follow a policy of containment, of trying to prevent the spillover from
the iraqi/syrian civil war to other neighbors and from harming american interests in the region in that way. again, it's certainly a possible alternative for the united states but we need to remember that containment is exceptionally difficult. it has rarely succeeded in the past and i think the fall of mosul is probably the most graphic illustration of just how hard it is to contain the civil war -- the spillover from one civil war from affecting another. the last point i'd make is simply to do nothing would be the worst choice of all. thank you very much. >> well, thank you all for your testimony and, i'm sorry, i had to step out but we had the benefit of having your testimony in advance. so let me ask you, ambassador jeffrey, if maliki is the problem and maliki somehow rises to be the prime minister again,
what's the course of events for us? >> first of all, it's not going to be easy for them to hang on as prime minister. it will be easy of at least part of the sunni community and part of the kurdish community to get above the 165 that is needed. what i fear is that there will be a long delay and that's what we had in 2010 where he'll be the acting prime minister for many months and people will get more discouraged. i think the first thing is for us to press for this process to go forward. because i think that most iraqis, including many of the shia parties believe they need a new leader. if he does stay in power, then our options are far more along the lines that dr. pollack has mentioned at the end of the problem in dealing with iraq and
syria, from jordan, from kurdistan and turkey to the extent that's possible, to both try to contain the anger and go after some of these isil elements that are threatening us or threatening the stability of the region. it will be very hard to work with a government in baghdad that does not have the buy-in of the sunnis and the kurds and will not be possible to assist in any retakeover of the sunni areas by an army that does not represent of the people of the region. >> and if the flipside of that happens, that, in fact, he does not continue as prime minister, what are the immediate things that the next government will have to do in order to create the type of national unity that can fight isis and not have the ability to disintegrate. >> i have my own list, we have
our own list and iraqis have their own list as well. there has to be a deal on oil. brett mcgurk has talked about some of the options. they are ready, they are on the shelf and it will give them an overall slice of resources while bringing them back into the system. that's real important. there needs to be real revenue sharing. they've already tried this. up until recently, the kurds were getting 17%. some of the either oil-producing provinces, kirkuk, are those with a lot of pilgrims and they are getting slices of the iraqi government budget to execute their own programs and they were very, very successful. there's a model also on the shelf to have more economic federalism. so it's not just a list of things. if you want inclusiveness, you get a guy that lacks
inclusiveness. that will do any more economic plan. if you want a more economic i can federalism, you introduce financial and energy policies that will see to that. if you want to have a security force that is capable of doing what general barbero said, let's have commanding control which is the no the case now. >> dr. pollack, do you have anything to add? >> i think the united states needs to do a molot more to mak clear what we would do to help them if they actually took the steps that we are looking for. right now, my sense from iraqis is we're demanding a great deal from them but we're not actually letting them know what we would do for them if we took what are actually very difficult steps. that gets to ambassador jeffrey's point about how we need to be pressuring them and pushing this process forward.
getting rid of prime minister maliki is going to be very difficult and i think the iraqis need to understand in much more concrete terms, rather than the more vague promises that they seem to be hearing from the administration about what they would get if they did it. >> chairman bchl arbero, i am really hesitant to continue to authorize sales or to approve sales -- it's the administration to authorize them -- but to approve sales when i see what has happened so far with very critical arm ma meant that has fallen into the hands of isis as a result of it being abandoned on the battlefield. so how -- in light of your comments that we need to respond to iraqi's request for help, which i assume in part is possibly air strikes but also they are looking for equipment, how do we create the safeguards so that if we're going to help we don't end up having our
weaponry fall in the hands of isis and use the forces that we want to defeat them? >> it's it will just happen. >> but not to the tune -- >> no, i agree. i think from this assessment we look at which are the good units of the iraqi security forces and we invest heavily in them with advice, training, whatever they need. and then take a hard look at what they are asked for and what we are willing to share with them and make some decisions. but a senior iraqi leader last week said to me, where is america? russians are supporting us. we want americans, you're our
friends. they have three fixed wing aircraft to shoot hell fires. you can't, as i said, air strike your way out of this. i would pick the right units from this assessment and i would invest in them with the weapons and equipment that we feel -- that would help. >> well, i would say to the iraqis, billions of dollars, hundreds of lives, that's where america has been. and and i would also remind you that they were unwilling to pursue a status of forces agreement which might have created the wherewithal to continue to solidify the iraqi security forces. and so i think they have to think about the decisions that they have made not to relive them but to instruct them moving
forward. senator corker? >> thank you, mr. chairman. and again, thank you for being here. i think a lot of times our second panels are actually better than the first. but by that time people have other business. thank you so much for your help. dr. pollack, you responded when senator menendez just mentioned that they were unwilling to pursue a status of forces agreement. i'm just wondering what you were hoping to say but did it instead with an expression. >> yeah. i think that what was going through my head, both the united states and iraq failed each other and themselves. it was a moment when i think that prime minister maliki was, at best, ambivalent and history has proven would have been beneficial to him.
and the united states was ambivalent itself about whether it wanted to stay. >> and our focus needs to be on the future but i know ambassador jeffrey has had a give and take publicly in writing about this. is that your impression of what happened during that time? just very brefly. i want to move on to other things. >> very briefly, the administration following the recommendation of its military leaders and my recommendation in 2010 offered to keep troops on. in essence, the maliki government and most of the political parties agreed to have troops that got hung up on the question of a status of forces agreement. al maliki was reluctant to do this. controlling the sunnis in government said he would not move any further than maliki would move that undercut how we had done the deal back in 2008 when we had gotten the earlier
agreement and, frankly, time ran out. in terms of how enthusiastic the administration was about it, i had my instructions which were to try to get an agreement. >> so i noticed -- thank you both for that clarification. there's been a discussion of the order of steps that need to take place and there's been a heavy emphasis on getting the right political situation. i think all of you agree with that. some of you would like to see us go ahead and take some steps now. let me ask you, general, what do you think -- what are some of the elements of debate that are taking place now relative to -- if you were guessing and my guess is that you actually talked with some of these people from time to time. but prior to us knowing if they are going to have an inclusive government, someone other than maliki, what do you think are some of the elements of the debate that are taking place inside the administration relative to taking some small steps, not something sustained
but some of the small steps that i think y'all mentioned might build morale at a minimum and will stave some of the steps that isil are taking. >> i think there's been a reliance on this as miss slotkin said in a process. this process has, in my view, become a way to not take action. and we're in a situation where isis, as i said, is threat and they are gaining strength. i think there's been discussion of air strikes. and you can't take air strikes on targets without having precision if you see the entities out in the desert. that will only be for fleeting effect. just doing air strikes or drone strikes can have some effect and
it won't be lasting or decisive. i think there is great reluctance to put -- reintroduce american forces. i get that. i understand. but if this is an exestential threat and if the iraqis security forces are the way to deal with this and these iraqi security forces are not prepared or capable of dealing with it, you can't close that circle without external help to these forces. i hope it's not a question of if we should support the iraqi security forces and introduce the steps that i said is a question of when and now and we've had this assessment, how quickly. >> so the fear would be paralysis through purposeful,
long-term analysis, that would be the fear, just analyzing this forever and not taking action and i also agree with you, there is some reticence to get involved militarily. let me ask you this. maliki, obviously a -- he may not have been a good prime minister but he understands the debate taking place in our country and knows that him being gone, while we might not have laid out -- and it's a great comment, for y'all to share specifically what they would do if they have this inclusive government. i think that's a great point. but is there -- can you tell if there's any leveraging taking place by maliki right now knowing that we're not going to get involved in any kind of big way if he's still there? is there any activity that is occurring there relative to him
trying to leverage us in other ways? >> dr. pollack might have information as well. i think, first of all, he points out correctly that he did very well in the last elections several months ago, winning personally 700,000 votes, which is more than he did in 2010. his party came in first. under the constitution, he should be given by the new president selected today within 15 days an opportunity to form a government. and under the constitutional process, if he can't form it and i think it will be hard for him to form it after 30 days, the mandate has to pass to another party. now, that's a lot of time to consume doing this. i think that, as a minimum, he's going to want to play this out. and he also may feel that, in the end, the americans having sent -- what was it, 775 additional forces to iraq -- are
ready to help them out regardless of what happens. again, i think i and many others have said, under certain circumstances, striking isil where they pose a danger is important. but we cannot provide the whole gamut, the whole breadth of support that they need absolutely unless we have an inclusive government that can bring in the sunnis and the kurds and it won't happen with him, sir. >> just one more question. my time is up and i know all of us probably have to be places. but there was discussion and y'all said this about being a regional approach. and syria and iraq obviously having no border between them anymore, what are some of the dynamics on the syrian side that as we look at this regionally -- i know y'all are just focused on iraq now -- that complicate with
the side being in power there, complicate our ability to look at it regionally? >> i'm glad to start, senator. i think one of the most obvious problems is the one that i've already mentioned, which is that when you look obama nly at syri do not like the assad regime, we want it gone, then the question is to how best help the opposition. when you look at iraq, you have a situation where you have a shia group in charge of the government, they are likely to remain in charge of the government and we're going to want to remain good ties with that. simultaneously, we have a sunni operation that we do not like and others that we very much like. there's a complexity that is involved. any support to one of these groups becomes complicated by the opposite effect that it has with the other. if we're providing enormous support to sunni in syria, some of that is going to flow to
sunni groups in iraq, some of whom we may not like. but more that we are helping the maliki government in baghdad, the more it's going to be seen by folks in the region of supporting the wider shia cause which also encompasses the assad government. we need to recognize the complexity that's been introduced by having wars in iraq and syria that are by in large merged which the region sees as a sunni/shia fight but we see in a much more complex way. >> would you like to add to that? >> if i could, senator. as far as a regional support, we know that -- isis is washing money. but the way to choke these organizations is to go after their financing. now, for the near term, they've got plenty of that. however, we know that there are regional actors supporting them, supporting isis.
we should employ, as i said in my statement, our intelligence committee to em employee those actors and use every tool, department of commerce, department of treasury, to go after those actors and these sources of funding. we know, have a good idea where it's coming from, let's identify them and target them as part of a regional approach to this growing problem. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you all for being here. one last set of questions. general, you served in iraq, you led our mission to a train and equipped iraqi forces and when u.s. forces left iraq, it seemed that iraqi forces were on their way to becoming a capable force. so the question that begs the question, what happened? why did the isf's capability and capacity erode so quickly? >> senator, tough question.
and it's tough to see what has happened and what has happened over the last few years. i've been to iraq many times over the last year since i left active duty. but the isf was built to handle a low level insurgency and our goal was to get them to where they were good enough. frankly, when i was there in 2009 and 2010 and part of 2011, there would be advisers to continue the training. we knew -- i did an assessment in 2010 for then for the general and this is where the forces will be in 2011. we wanted to convince them and show them the capabilities and