tv Hearing on Military at Southern Border CSPAN February 2, 2019 10:42am-1:30pm EST
it. if there is a challenge, we tame it. if there's an opportunity, we it. it -- seize let's begin by recognizing that the state of our union is strong because our people are strong. stated the union, postponed because of the government shut down will now take place on tuesday night. watch as president trump delivers the state of the union dress -- address live from the house chamber. the is followed by democratic response by former gubernatorial candidate, stacey abrams. the state of the union come alive, tuesday, at 9:00 eastern on c-span, c-span.org, or on the radio app. next, an update from the defense department on u.s. troops at the southern border.
we will hear what the pentagon has to say about the homeland security department's request for more support at the border during this house of armed committee hearing. >> called the meeting to order, if everyone could take their seats. welcome. since this is our first housekeg , we talked about the five minute rule, i did not get into the specifics. now that we have witnesses and each of you are asking questions. the five minute rule applies to the totality of your conversation. or at least i'm going to try to have it be that way. if you ask a question for five minutes, it does not mean that the witness will answer it for another 10. we try to stop it at five. i will not cut you off midsentence, but when it hits
that five minutes, there will be a tapping to remind you that we are supposed to move onto the next person. i will try to let you finish the thought, and we also have the option that if you don't get every thing it was asked. here is the failsafe will take it for the record and submitted to your office when we get a chance. that's because you have a large interest in the subject and want to try to get to everybody today. give every member a chance to ask questions, if possible. the purpose of today's hearing is to discuss the deployment to the border that have been done both guard, reserve and active-duty members of the military. to help us understand this policy the pentagon has sent john rudy, thank you for being here. the director of operations for the joint staff, vice admiral and i appreciate you both being here and look forward to your testimony. we have a number of questions.
sort of, it's the basics but how many active-duty numbers have been sent and what is the plan going forward and how do that compared to the reserve and why did we choose active-duty for part of this instead of the guard reserve but most members of this committee know there's a fairly substantial history of presidents using members of the guard and reserve under title 32 for border security operations. what is more unusual is sending active-duty personnel to the border, it is not unprecedented but it is not been done before very often. it was an unusual step. one of the biggest areas of questions is what is the impact of this on dod as this committee we all know we fell way behind in readiness as a result of the iraq war in afghanistan war and the tempo the military had to go through. we began to catch up on that which is good. what impact does it have to send several thousand troops down to the southern border, it
interrupts training and their time and how is that impacting it and also, to my knowledge, we don't have a figure for what this is cost the pentagon yet. we want those details. another big piece of this is the reason active in guard reserve was there in the first place was because there was a perceived crisis at the border. there really isn't that much evidence of that crisis. that is not to say the border security is not a challenge. speaking for myself and i believe for all people on this committee we believe border security is important in a challenge and something we have to figure out how to get right. other committees are supposed to handle it but we acknowledge its importance in the role the military will play in helping it. when you look at the statistics the peak of our problem on the border was in 2004, 2005 consistently up to that point there was over 1 million
apprehensions of unauthorized attempted border crossings at the border. for the last several years the number has been grown so roughly one third of what it was. this did not happen by accident. we made an investment, in a bipartisan way we have nearly doubled the number of border patrol agents and built 700 miles of wall and we have drones and sensors and all manner of different efforts that were taken to reduce the amount of unauthorized border crossings. as a result of that we've had zero net migration from mexico going on for four or five years. so while border security is a challenge there is not much evidence that right at the moment it is a crisis that would call for the highly unusual step of sending active-duty troops to the border. we need to better understand not just for security is a challenge but we get that. we get that drugs come across the border as been well
documented they do not usually come across -- they come across two ports of entry and other areas where we need to spend money if we try to get at that issue. it's an issue why all of a sudden is a crisis and what impact is it having on the military. lastly, we have all heard much of the discussion about the possibility of the president declaring a state of emergency and taking money from a variety of places in order to build a wall. he's talking about a state of emergency he's talking taking money exclusively to build a wall. that is not this committee's primary area of debate but certainly all members here have a strong opinion and don't be surprised if you get a question or two about that but when it comes to the declaration of emergency the president is fairly broad authority under 1976 law to do that. he would have to justify that emergency and i'm certain it would be challenged in court but the real big concern here is where does it find the money and
if are talking about building a wall we talked about four, $5 billion right now for the long-term cost of what he's talking about is much more than that. the only pot of money as i understand is the pentagon could go after with come out of military construction. there is a bipartisan opinion on this committee we should not be taken to permanent defense dollars out of military construction for anything for a while because again we have eight readiness challenge and the money needs to be spent there. what would the impact of that be something we will be interested in. other pots of money the president can go to, primary one is the army corps of engineers and those are for projects primarily focused on relief, not dod priorities. other money but not that big and let's face it, when you look at that discretionary budget the permanent defense is where the money is there. we are deeply concerned if emergency is declared the money will be taken out of dod for
some of what we think is a questionable purpose but whether you support the purpose or not where that money is right now is important and we were not like to see it taken away. with that i will yield to the ranking member for his opening statement and i think our witnesses again for appearing before us. >> let me join in welcoming our witnesses. thank you all for being here today. in my view it is perfectly appropriate for our committee to examine the mission and the activities of our military on the southern border and i think the questions the chairman asked at the beginning of the statement what are you doing down there and how much does it cost and what effect does it have on readiness and so forth are perfectly legitimate questions. i do have concerns that the broader issues related to the immigration debate that are not the purview of this committee
may be brought in to this room even though we have no jurisdiction and even though it runs at least to begin us this year on a more partisan contentious note then we otherwise might. i hope that doesn't happen. when it comes to dod i note that the briefing material prepared for us by the staff should state that the previous five administrations have authorized the use of armed forces operating under title ten authorities in support of the border security. as a matter of fact we try to look at the various functions going back to at least the early 1990s that include things like surveillance and logistics and command and control in aviation support and a whole variety of things.
i notice that in 1997 under president clinton the military was used for instruction to build and improve physical barriers. i note that in 2012 under president obama the military was used for construction to install sensor equipment and so forth. might take away trying to put this a little in context is number one, but the imagination has done is in line with consistent with the sorts of things that we have asked the military to do for a long, long time. my second take away is that under administrations of both parties in congress about parties we aren't providing for adequate resources for border security. we keep having to use the military to back up the border patrol when it ought to be a job to do it. now, again, some of that takes us into areas outside of this committee and how much we do on
border security but clearly has indications for us. i hope that as we not only look at what were doing today but put today's mission in context going back what 30 years or more that at least informs decisions that are made outside of this room. thank you all again for being here and we look forward to your testimony and i yield back. >> thank you. that gentleman please my name is mr. ruth, will you go first. >> for the record in your books there are joint statements that they both provided for the committee. >> thank you, mr. chairman. ranking member thornberry and other distinct members of the 20. thank you for the opportunity to testify before you today on the defense department's support for the department of homeland security. u.s. customs and border protection and mission to secure
the southern border of the united states. the department of defense has a long history of supporting border security and dod has supported efforts to secure us borders since the early 1990s and dod has supported civilian law-enforcement for border security activity and counter drug activities and activities to counter transnational organized crime and other transnational threats. active reserve and national guard personnel have provided operational military support such as aerial reconnaissance, ground surveillance, search and rescue support and medical support. dod has loan facilities and special equipment to cdp or customs and border protection. dod is also provided temporary housing support to the department of health and human services or hhs is part of the national response to the search of unaccompanied alien children or uac at the us southern bord border.
from 2012-2017 dod provided shelter for nearly 60000 unaccompanied alien children receive care, security, transportation and medical services from hhs. consistent with section 2813 of the national defense authorization act for fiscal year 2017 the secretary of defense certified to providing the sheltering support to hhs would not negatively affect military training, operations, readiness or other military requirements including national guard and reserve readiness. at the direction of president bush in support of cbp's operation jumpstart dod provided national guard personnel and some 6000 from june of 2006-20 2006-2007. some 3000 from 2000-2008 to augment and enhance cdp's ability to execute its border security mission.
national guard personnel provided aviation, engineering, medical entry identities and, communications, vehicle maintenance and administrative and other non- law enforcement support. in addition the national guard improve the southern border security ever structure by building more than 30 miles of fence, 96 miles of vehicle barrier and more than 90 miles of new all weather road and conducting road repairs exceeding 700 miles at the direction of president obama dod provided up to 1200 national guard personnel annually from 2010-2016. in support of cdp's operation. national guard personnel provided aerial reconnaissance, analytical support and support to counter drug enforcement activities that enabled cbp to recruit and train additional officers to serve along the southern border.
duty worked closely with the apartment of homeland security on requests for assistance. across the full range of support that unity has provided dhs, border security support, disaster support and special events securities for and support protection for the president. dod's were closely with dhs is that department develops its request for duty assistance is deliberately expeditiously and effectively as possible in the admission needs. duty carefully considers a request for assistance including in order to determine whether dod has the requested capabilities and resources and whether providing the requested assistance is consistent with the law. when a request is approved duty works with the requester to select the right forces and resources to meet the requester's mission needs and to avoid or mitigate potential impacts on military readiness. duty is use the same process for every dhs request for assistance related to dhs border security.
in our current type of support in april for 2018 memorandum entitled securing the southern border of the united states, the president directed the secretary of defense to support dhs "-right-double-quote, securing the southern border and taking other necessary actions to stop the flow of deadly drugs and other contraband gang members and other criminals and illegal aliens into this country "-right-double-quote. president directed them to request the use of the national guard to assist in fulfilling this mission pursuant to section 502 of title 32 and to use such authorities as appropriate and consistent with applicable law. the president also directed the secretary of defense and secretary of homeland security in coordination with the attorney general to determine what other resources and actions are necessary to protect our southern border including federal law-enforcement, us military resources. all of this military support has been and will be continue to be provided consistent with the loss including section 1385
entitled 18 military personnel supported thought of as efforts but do not directly participate in law-enforcement. activities such as search, seizure and rest in military personnel protecting cbp personnel performing their federal functions at points of entry are consistent with the april 1971 opinion of the department of justice office of legal counsel also compliant with the -- let me say, the military's presence increase the effectiveness of cdp's border security operations and free us portable agents to conduct lot was meant to use of the southern border and enhance the situational awareness to stem the tide of illegal immigration, human smuggling and drug trafficking along the southern border. the ongoing temporary support is a continuation of the department long history of supporting dhs and cbp in the mission to secure the us border.
these decisions are far from static and we continue to work with the services, national guard bureau and us northern command to evaluate mission requirements and associated risk. determine, thank you for the opportunity to testify today. >> admiral. >> good morning. chairman smith, ranking member thornberry and distinguish members of the committee -- thank you for your support of the men and women in uniform are reserve our narration. take you for the opportunity this morning to address our military support to the department of homeland security and their mission to secure our selfless border. a secretary root mentioned, duty has a well established relationship with dhs and this includes our recent efforts to support the responses to hurricane michael and florence wildfires in california and our joint cyber security initiatives protecting our nation's critical infrastructure. dod's mission of homeland defense is inextricably linked
to dhs mission of homeland security and there is no better example than the ongoing efforts of our active and guard personnel supporting customs and border protection along our southern border today. since the commander-in-chief directed the military to support dhs and securing the southern border in april national guard personnel has supported cbp operation guardian support and augmenting cbp efforts to secure by performing logistical and operational support tasks from april to the present day. active duty military personnel have supported cbp's operation secure line since october in the areas of aviation, engineering, facilities and medical support. and by providing protection for cbp personnel while they perform their federal functions at our
ports of entry. this support is now transitioning to the operation of mobile surveillance cameras in support of cbp and all nine border patrol sectors across four states. in placing wire on existing barriers in areas designated by cbp between ports of entry and arizona and in california. we believe that our military presence in support has served to increase the effectiveness of cbp's border security operation by enabling them to focus on their law-enforcement duties at our ports of entry. our strong partnership with dhs has allowed us to match their mission requirements to existing core competencies of our guard and active force. while operating under existing dod authorities thus far the results have been successful.
i like to thank you again for your support for the opportunity to appear before the committee and i look forward to taking your questions. >> thank you, gentlemen. could you give us the specifics as a starting point on the active-duty troops that were deployed when they were first deployed and how many are there now and how long they are supposed to be there for human. >> with regard to active-duty troops served we presently have just a little under 2300 or excuse me, just over 2300 active-duty troops and they are scheduled right now to be deployed through january 2019 but that -- one portion of them has been approved to be deployed through january 2019 and there will be additional departments of active-duty troops that will go through the end of this fiscal year, september 30, in response to the latest across from the homeland security.
>> what was the original number? >> something like 5600. >> there's a combination served on national guard and active-duty troops that were deployed and the numbers fluctuate and so as you recal recall -- >> and sorry, i know the numbers fluctuate but the number of active-duty troops there was a there is a spice and focused on active duty. i believe it was 5600. >> about 5900 and there was from the beginning of november. >> that is a part that is different from everything else here. most of what thornberry referred to in terms of the active-duty side of it is under title ten and we provided equipment, sensors, various other things and it is very rare to send active-duty troops to the border and we have used the guard and reserve consistently and what was different about this set of circumstances? that made us and 5800 active
troops, i don't see it. >> i will provide context spirit i'm sorry, could you pull the microphone closer. >> is that better? >> much better spirits at that particular time the group of migrants that were amassing in southern mexico was approaching 10000 and at that time we were not sure dhs was unsure which route or routes they would take to the selfless border and there were four, five different routes they could've come by and there was concern with respect to timing and whether they would go by foot or by vehicle or by rail. at the time the president directed that we examine options to augment the bp at the border so they can mask their personnel at the ports of entry and we can provide an augmentation force to allow them to do. >> did those -- caravans all went to the port of entry.
>> sir, they all went to the ports of entry in california. >> that's what they said they were due from what i was reading. >> sir, not initially. they made that determination when they arrived in the city. at the time we do not know where they would go whether brownsville or if they would go to new mexico. >> just for reference, mexico city is a pretty for different incident from the border. for the most part these people are walking. that was what struck me at the time was estimate that we got that they would get here in roughly january. and the border active-duty troops were sent to the border in september, correct? >> active-duty troops request came in the end of october and we deploy them in early november. >> one final question. you said that it has worked in the active-duty troops have
improved the situation and what is your metric for that? near as i can tell, we have made substantial improvements since 2005 border security but what metric has changed since we sent the active-duty troops there that shows there's been some sort of improvement on these issues that you list in terms of drugs, border crossings and all that human. >> in terms of metrics the initial deployment consisted with heavy deployment during personnel so along 22 of the ports of entry we laid some 70 miles concertina wire and they get more difficult for someone to cross over illegally at those ports of entry. this made it easier -- it allowed cbp we believe to spread their manpower more efficiently across a large number of ports of entry that could have potentially been at risk. additionally, we sent medical
personnel down to help with initial screening and we sent down facilities people to provide facilities for cbp. in terms of the metrics i would say the fact that we made it that we hardened those ports of entry probably the best answer i can give you. >> only thing i would add, we look to the customs and border patrol and department permit security as a primary mission older, our role is to augment their efforts. >> there seems to us in the efforts at dod as provided is that it has allowed them to focus their resources elsewhere. >> that's assisted in their mission, smith and none of that is an actual metric measurement. one final thought. when are we going to be to the point where we don't need active-duty troops because we have not needed them for a long time before that and now we
apparently need them and what are we looking for where we can get to the point where we no longer will send out active-duty troops to the border and what needs to be commerce before we stop using the somewhat unprecedented step of sending active-duty troops to the border? >> mr. chairman, the defense department acts in support of request from the department of human security and they are the primary mission older but as we look to how we will choose to augment those resources and respond to those requests for assistance we look across the total force, active reserve and national guard to determine what is the right mix and the appropriateness of the force to respond. that is where the decision was made in terms of the timeliness. >> you don't really no, basically, what do we need to accomplish? i know at the end of the day it is dhs that makes a call from the ask for help and work through it but shirley is the one providing resources and trying to plan for the future they given you some idea of what
it is they're trying to accomplish so they won't need you anymore. >> they do give us an idea and work with them to scope the request and to understand what they are trying to accomplish so that we provide the right capability. >> what was your take on that? >> expense the specific quest. for example, some of the quest where they have asked for surveillance capabilities we delve into a little bit of what are you trying to detect and why and where the circumstances. with respect to the national guard we work with the bureau -- >> sorry, i don't want to interrupt but i am asking specifically about the active-duty troops who had been sent to the border. i understand that other stuff. but that was all you are doing stuff we talked about we would not be having this hearing. if the active-duty troops that caught the attention of the committee. >> sir, if i can give an example. before that if we go back to the metric. >> microphone. >> in the matter, we are trying to prove the negative for trying to prove how many people do not
cross the border. we just do not know except for the feedback that we received from cbp that at the time we deployed those initial numbers were 10000 to 10000 never reach the border but we felt that we were better prepared and cbp was better prepared because the work we did and in terms of the work we have done and are doing it is not a steady state signal so although we deployed 5900 and early november by christmas those numbers were down 2400. >> why? pgh. >> because we finished laying the wire and when that mission was complete we redeployed those people home. when we determined that the flow of migrants that had to be screened by medical personnel was not as high as originally estimated we downsized and brought those people home. when the facilities that we built were no longer required by cbp they had initially searched the forces personnel down there
we provided temporary housing and when that was the required we set our people and said that a criminal. we have tried to adjust keeping in mind readiness and cost and it's been fairly evolving dynamic. >> mr. thornberry. >> i want to go back because i'm not sure we got the rest of the story. you started your answer a few moments ago on active duty with 10000 folks coming up to mexico and did not know for sure where they will go and the decision was that the border patrol folks would focus on the ports of entry and that left the rest of the border to be covered and so can you continue then and back to the chairman's question -- why active-duty in that circumstance versus guard? >> yes, sir. probably we're taking a look at
the requirements across the total force and trying to see which forces are best suited for the task and who is really available. in one's mind i they may think the national guard is just a gigantic organization that we continue to draw from for years and years for decades in fact and we just can't. and so, at the time when those forces were amassing and we weren't sure whether they were going to come by foot, vehicle or by train the decision was made within the department given the options we laid out in terms of timing to send active-duty. where those troops down there within a week. and so, i hope it's a little more context in terms of what drove the active-duty but we did look at the garden and looked at the guards capacity in the missions for those particular missions or requirements that dhs and cbp have requested and we just did not have those skill sets available in the guard to
drop on at the time. >> if i may add briefly, in evaluating the present request in working with the national guard bureau and the state generals part of the reason or the reason we have selected from the active-duty to fill part of those requests for board is that the guard satisfies those requests from 19 guard unit in 19 states and there's a limit to the number of volunteers which is the way they have a source them that they can do. the feedback from the national guard bureau and the generals is the present state little over 2000 is what they can sustain and therefore the delta between that sustainable rate and the new request from the department of homeland security is what we're going to source from the active-duty. >> that gets 20 months ago. if i could summarize my understanding. they say we need help doing x, y and z and can you dod, help us, and you look at what those
specific requirements or tasks are and figure out what forces can fulfill their request and in this case one of the key things was how quick can you get them there because you didn't know where the caravan was going and secondly what sort of specific capabilities did you need because a lot of the guard folks at least the ones that you could deploy did not have it. does that sum it up? >> sir, i think so. i'd like to add that these requirements from cbp do not drop. we work with cbp on a daily basis to remind these requirements so that we can be more predictable and we can ask hard questions and we can look at legal aspects to make sure the forces will be using a way consistent with the authorities we have and so it is an ongoing partnership to get to what we think is the right answer.
the right answer is not always satisfactory for all parties. >> but you have to be flexible. for example, stories that there are a new caravan that is forming in central america and headed this way. in your conversations with them be ready to adjust to changes in the situation, don't you? >> yes, that's right. you are correct. current information shows caravan of over 12000 people and there are three that we are tracking. the department of homeland security is tracking en route and one of which is over 12000 people in the latest estimate. yes, we do have to be flexible on those events and admiral mentioned the number of troops and the mix of them has varied over time and will need to do so and we do work very closely with dhs, cbp to understand the what they're trying to accomplish more fully so we can source it and provide the type of assistance that will be meaningful.
>> okay, are you back. >> inc. you, mr. larson. >> thank you, mr. chairman. if i could feel my time to representative -- >> microphone. >> thank you. undersecretary rude and admiral for being here. i appreciate the dialogue about the choices you're making when it comes to national guard versus active military and he listed some of the components, timeliness, scope of the reque request, the cost and available troops. one thing i would like to dig into more is readiness. admiral mentioned it briefly and we asked a lot from our troops and when it is critical that we provide that readiness specifically the reston refit between missions and appointment and so what impact does an increase in deployment used on the border have on soldier readiness?
>> so far, it's been manageable. as i explained a few minutes ag- >> i'm sorry, we tried to rotate the troops and about every six, eight weeks and so we were trying to make sure we maintained that deployed to dwell ratio and a manageable level because he may have to call on the same forces to deploy to another mission. the border security mission is obviously a high priority for the ministration and we are balancing that requirement along with syria, afghanistan, ongoing commitments in africa and the western pacific and we are trying to balance all of that but in this particular case we have been using troops that are based here in the continental united states and trying to rotate the man in a fairly -- i want to say a revolving door but being in november they were out before christmas and the next group will come out at the end of the month your aunt we try to
manage it in that manner. >> shifting gears it is my understanding they are meant to be the primary impossible members to interact with migrants on the border but we have already discussed the medical component of the mission and can you give me a little more clarification on how the medical mission is limited based on interactions and how that is controlled. >> congresswoman, you are correct. it's the primary shareholder and law-enforcement agency have the response ability to interface principally with the migrants. duty personnel medical personnel are there to assist after screening has been conducted by cbp personnel and if there someone they believe presents an illness or issue they would like to refer them after that screening to dod personnel we can assist with medical treatment.
>> thank you. shifting to the national guard we have had long history of national guard working on the border as part of the insight drug task force. can use plain the differences between that longer history of the current national guard operation. >> as you mentioned, national guard members and other members of the force have been deployed over the years to the border in addition to those deployments that the current president has directed president obama directed several deployments those occurred during president bush's tenure and during president bush's tenure. their mission is the department of homeland security customs and border protection. >> i'm sorry, the differences? >> is a very similar mission and depends on what the dhs request of us pacifically to augment their forces and that varies over time whether surveillance
or monitoring a borders or in this particular case, and place the barriers between ports of entry. >> national guard is also placing barriers at ports of entry? >> that is done by active-duty about 150 miles of concertina wire in between ports of entry between now and the end of the fiscal year. >> any specific differences between us national guard deployment in the previous one? >> i think it is relatively the same. i can't speak to the previous mission that you referred to but i can give you examples of what we are relying on the guard for now. heavily with respect to aviation and so they have a number of rotary wing aircraft with optical and ir sensors that we don't have as many in the active force to be honest with the a 17 aircraft we rely on heavily particularly in new mexico and arizona and the other place we
are providing support is vehicle mechanics for vehicles and intelligence analysts that help at headquarters and paralegals and administrative assistance and so the hope is we are freeing up or the goal is where freeing up agents with one person. >> thank you, mr. chairman. secretary and admiral, thank you for being here today. we are so fortunate to have the military personnel and the personnel we have with the us customs and border protection agents on our border protects american families to address the issues we have on the southern border and i want to thank both of you for your service in particular i have a first-hand experience of the benefits of being activated.
after 31 years in the army guard and am very grateful to have three sons who have served in the national guard and we have found the being activated for us was hurricane recovery and relief. being activated and mobilized enhances training and the camaraderie of our members has never been better and so i want to thank you for the opportunities that you give as ben indicated in 19 different states. avid cardmembers at the southern border and i know how positive that is for our cardmembers. presidents -- with the last five invitations for the use of duty personnel and secretary rude for surveillance, logistics, aviation support and assistance. the support of the southern border has been carried out with operation jumpstart under president george bush and opposition failings over barack obama. can you discuss the relationship between duty and customs and border protection personnel on
the ground and do you see this relationship changing on the extension of active-duty missi mission. we understand that it's backing up the law-enforcement and personal. >> congressman, as you correctly point out the defense department has long history of supporting customs and border protection as well as other federal agencies in support of their civil missions. the relationship is close one both here in washington and in our deployed units in the field. they live and work together. as cbp performs their primary mission and their law-enforcement dues we assist them and it takes various forms construction at 22 points of entry and recently not only concertina wire but jersey barriers and vehicle obstruction and placement of shipping containers and other temporary barriers to control the flow of individuals and medical support
aviation support and things of that nature. it's a day-to-day working relationship. >> will the backup and support makes a positive difference and it's so meaningful. with the military mission extended in september 30, 2019 what, if any, does the government have for transitioning the mission from active duty to national guard and what conditions will be met as indicated and is ever-changing. >> as mentioned, when we received a request for assistance from the department of homeland security we look at them for legality whether we have the capability and appropriateness of the request and work with cbp in this particular case. in other cases we do other support to find that in here at the national guard bureau and state adjective general have indicated there is a predictive steady state that they think they can source in terms of their provision. where we are unable to meet those requests from the national guard is where we looked at
active-duty to the end of the fiscal year. >> thank you. admiral, what opportunities exist to mobilize between the border to maintain a high level of readiness? this is a concern by all of us. can you dress the training the duty personnel received on the standing rules for the role of force? >> i will take each of those. on the first point i think it ties back to a point made earlier about readiness. when we deployed our forces most people just think we are consuming readiness but we are also producing readiness during those diplomas. as you know, many times at the end of that deployment. a high state of readiness than you were going and because you just accumulate that type of hands-on leadership and experience that you typically when i get home. one really good example of the military police that we have under duty authorities providing protection for cdp should they
be overwhelmed at the border and so the way we have had to train with cbp personnel to make sure that we are clear on each of our authorities and make sure each of our creations are compatible and to make sure we understand each other's tactics, techniques and procedures we ran those teams together with cdp through ten different vignettes training scenarios both day and night. we tried to expose them to a wide range of possibilities. some of the best training we had is with the military police. >> thank you very much. >> thank you, mr. chairman. quick yes or no question. given the right description of the service members at the border receiving imminent danger pay? >> no, sir. >> i would yield the belt of a time to the congressman.
>> thank you, under secretary rude and admiral. he stated the military support is for three main purposes of providing nurses to stop the plight of illegal immigration, stop human trafficking and stop the flow of illegal drugs. like to hear admiral, which mission is the most pressing? >> drugs. >> human trafficking or personal crossing the border? >> difficult to prioritize. all pretty important. i would say i think as we transition to our new mission that from the ports of entry to the areas between the ports of entry we bring a skill set with. >> to detection and monitoring that i think will be very valuable for cbp and trying to get their arms around all three of those problems to be present at the border. >> in that case, i like to focus on the flow of illegal drugs and
it's been reported that large portion of the drugs do not come across the border but come by see in our ports of entry and as you know as a service worker officer for 20 years we know the navy use to supply forces frequently at the support of outcome to stop the flow and i met with the admiral's executive agent for global force management for forces and he confirmed the only forces getting are those that happen to be transitioning between east and west coast so i was wondering if you could compare the request for forces that were currently receiving from outcome versus those that were meeting and the goal to stop the flow of drugs and what percentage from .com have gone unmet in the last several years? >> though, i think we need to talk about the last 18 months under a new president with a new
national security strategy and new defense strategy. that new defense strategy racks and stacks problems that's with respect to china, russia and north korea, iran and the what we have done in the past year in particular is we have prioritized our resources in accordance with those priorities. we just can't do it all. as a chairman brought up in a statement at the beginning we have a source readiness for some time. that is the secretary acting secretary now top priority in order to make us more lethal we have to be ready. we have had to ruthlessly prioritize and quite honestly although the problem is a big problem and we have historically under resourced southern command against that problem that and i probably have an unsatisfactory answer in terms of being able to
improve in that regard but i do think when we have problems like that i do think it requires more imagination to get after it in a better way. it is looked at and i'm just being honest with respect to the racking and stacking of national priorities. it has not reached the top. >> with that racking and stacking of priorities this is currently the only one in our discussion that is being potentially envisioned as a national emergency? it doesn't seem consistent with where we placed it in her order of priorities for allocating forces and when you say use creatively you mentioned when we use forces were not just consuming readiness but producing readiness so that is another element that i would ask you to consider when we have forces that are not deployed but in the work and training phases to be able to participate as well in this mission of
combating the flow of drugs at sea. while building their readiness. >> that is a fair comment. to your point about priorities the national defense strategy is a sound strategy and has been laid out priorities we follow reality strikes and we were reprioritizing and that's what happened in this case. >> thank you, i you my time. >> thank you. mr. turner. >> thank you, mr. chairman, admiral, secretary, thank you for being here and for your service and expertise in the dialogue you are having. i will ask you two questions i will convene my time to mr. bergman. the admiral indicated that it's hard to answer negative how many people were deterred and did not cross the border to simple questions. i think they are. but it will not restrict you to get to know.
to your knowledge, is the united its border with mexico currently closed and by closed i mean is a closed as a lever of protection currently be provided by homeland security in the department of defense, is it stopping illegal immigration, hasn't stopped, has illegal immigration stop between mexico and the united states as a result of the current level of protections from homeland security and dod? >> no, and left them alone cbp reports apprehending 154,000 illegal immigrants. >> to your knowledge are there portions of the us border between mexico and the united states were individuals can enter the united states illegally unimpeded? >> yes. >> i of my time. >> thank you and i appreciate you yielding time, mr. turner.
i'm glad you both are here. for clarification i want to make sure that nothing has changed since i took off the uniform ten years ago and that you only pay a guardsman or reservist when they are performing some type of duty. >> correct. >> okay, the point is active duty personnel that we have down there today you are paying them normal pay rates, no combat pay just a normal pay rate and any tad? >> sir, it depends. those numbers are very small. >> when they deploy for more than 30 days away from home station they receive a modest family separation allowance bottom line is minimal to no additional cost by utilizing active component personal. any idea how many of the active component personnel using on their is the first deployment since joining the military? in other words, they're not in a
dual time because they been stressed over a period of time? >> sir, i like to take that for the record. >> we know the troops coming off line need to get our and our need to get refreshed and retrained in some case remission they changed units. any special skill sets that are required on the border right now that we might call hd ld, high demand low-density? >> not skill sets so much, sir, but rotary wing because of the demand we have for helicopters in syria and iraq and afghanistan. we've been a bit tension in terms of heels. but not to the point where we have never get concerns. >> stress on the flight hours as opposed to time on the -- [inaudible conversations]
>> with a one, to dwell. >> is it fair to say that if we have a lot of first time folks deploying this is why they joined, maybe a slightly different fight, if you will or mission, more appropriate said that they originally envisioned on the first deployment but are we making them more capable because of the training of what they're doing on a daily basis so that when we do to play them somewhere in the world they are higher ready and more ready and ready to take on the mission? i would say in general down to every person would be difficult to make the argument [inaudible] may not be optimizing their skill sets but that said but it
is a critically important mission at the moment. >> we know the matter what the situation is whether we are dealing with combat injuries on the battlefield or dealing with military assistance disasters but the need for medical personnel whether doctor or nurses will continue to be stressed the matter what we are using them for. with that those who been around the block with humanitarian assistance keeping the peace and making a piece and let's stay in that one or two in the middle block and i yield back. >> and you. let me follow a quick question based on mr. turner's question there. dhs asks you for help and the question occurred to me do you ever say no because by mr. turner's definition to close the border and stop anybody in an unauthorized manner -- i would
think you could plop 50000 your strips down there on the border and still have a hard time doing that i'm sure mr. turner is aware every single combatant commander we have has requests that go unfulfilled and that is absolutely true. too much in the world that we need to do and we don't have the resources. we can talk about the border all day long and that's the only thing he had to worry about it dod well heck, 5900, that is nothing. why not 50000? we have got other needs in the world which we will hear about in great detail in this committee and the reason we're starting here is because this is not primary to our mission and if we start down this road with the previous questions we will say dod is all about the border and where does it stop? under what circumstances would you say no. there is a border problem.
we will not completely sure that border off. we also have isis and afghanistan in syria and worried about russia and china and do we have a sufficient presence to deter that threat. under what circumstances with dhs comes over and says we need your equipment and troops we do not have the isr in africa and we don't have enough of it true presence to deter russia that will take priority. under what circumstances do you say that? >> mr. chairman. >> i know that is not roughly your call but if the secretary defense call and i'm curious as to your perspective. >> the department of homeland security or another civil agency makes a request for assistance we look at it from the legality of it and do we have the capability to meet that need and then we do look at readiness and the impact of the other mission areas.
the same approach basic approach applies whether dhs or support the border. >> what would be most helpful when you did say no to dhs? what if they asked you for $10 billion to help build a wall would you say no then? >> with respect to use of the president would need to declare a national emergency and the secretary defense makes certain determinations before it would reach that question. the department of promiscuity cannot make the request directly to us. we need to be initiated by the peasants declaration but with respect to your question about where we say no we are not always approved a request from the department of promiscuity will work with them to work with them to adjust to meet the needs and they don't have a full understanding of what we can do. >> ...
at the individual units when they were deployed to the border, the 5900. what were their skill sets and that his unit by unit, so please deliver to us. there is another question that has been raised over and over, and third apparently the military is good data stacking containers to form some sort of wall. what else did they actually do,
and apparently they were deployed in the southwest southeastern part of texas and the threats moved to san diego and tijuana. the military move also to address that threat? for the record having asked for that specific information i would like to turn my remaining time to the lady from oklahoma. >> thank you very much and thank you mr. secretary and admiral. my question focuses on readiness for a moment and i'm curious the active-duty troops that were deployed where they were before their deployment and what they
were doing before their deployment and what it took to get them down there and then the second part, given that we have discussed the historical nature of the national guard working with dhs and taking the lead on some of these, does the national guard have the capability to accomplish the same mission on that sort of thing? >> your first question was about where thiwhere the sources weree they went down the border. they were based in the continental united states, and they were ready to deploy within 30 days so we always have a reserve forces he can call upon for an emergency we are going to respond to what we send additional forces to plus up for a particular mission so those
are trained, certified and equipped in order to their specific tasks we felt we were suited on the inventory forces that we had the day were best suited with those skill sets in a timely manner to deploy at the right readiness level in the trade. they have in the past but not in this particular operation. what is the difference in the turnaround time for the deployment between the active-duty troops that were deployed and a national guard unit being deployable in that time.
>> thank you mr. chairman. while we've talked a lot today about the last 12 to 13 years we've been repeatedly sending reserve and guard its been going on since the alamo is it going to take to continue this pattern we are going to have to fund the department of homeland security to continually reach into the dod to subsidize their deployment.
to address the money for something i'm just astounded by the fact that we continue to act stupid in congress and the fuss over things like 5.7 billion it cost $11 billion to shut the government down. this 132 million for the national guard in the last fiscal year was 103 million we project in fy 195,448,000,000 the, it's difficult to give an accurate estimate right now just pasting as i described the requirement is evil thing and
fluctuating. we continue to do this and we have to adequately fund the department of homeland security specifically customs and border protection and with that i will yield back the balance of my time. >> thank you mr. rogers for yielding me time. just very quickly, i've spent my whole military career as an engineer and i was that they called a staffer on the army side. what we do is build obstacles and there are many purposes for obstacles and i'm sure it's the same way in the navy. the disrupt and block and using the analogy walks don't keep burglars out of your cars. they were breaking into all the cars that were unlocked so those that didn't keep them from getting in the car but it did slow them down.
they have different purposes and they move people to where they are. do you agree unless they will constantly watch but you can always get by or bypass them however they do make it easier to where you locate people coming across. what do you agree with that vice admiral and mr. secretary? >> there's a lot of variables that go into the placement but i think you're right the variable is in effect unless you are surveilling it and you can tell whether it has reached. i want to touch on just a little bit whether it is the active component. the policy is the guard and reserve and the operational requirements i will use my small state of mississippi which has about 10,000 members in the national guard but currently, we
have one company in the aviation that is on the border supporting the mission and giving great work now. in jordan and other places, that is about 4500 of our 10,000 army soldiers. we have the 184 which is also at the headquarters in kuwait right now doing logistics and we have state commissions and these things called hurricanes that we have to respond to. we have all this force is deployed as a part of the active rotational force. is that the reason to use maybe sometimes the active-duty forces when the guard forces can do the same thing? >> yes, sir. as you said initially, it is as i mentioned earlier the guard has sustainability is as follow that we cannofollowsthat we cany
so i think it is a balanced approach in terms of how we put these people to best use. >> with that i will yield back, mr. chairman. >> nobody can guess what the president is going to do but we have indications of what he might do. have you taken into account the calls for construction of a barrier different than the one year and things that you are presently working with if you were to do the 230 miles? maybe you should take this. >> there were other legal requirements that we have done preplanning to understand the law and the obligations under it
that's one thing that you do well. within such a declaration of a national emergency it woul in te beautification othat would beths under which is done with limited authorities depending on what the authorities are it would be in the department of homeland security to get the latest prioritized listing so no preplanning in terms of cost in that circumstance we haven't made any decisions are finalized with those would be that obviously depending what the type of barrier the army corps of engineers i and the case woud be, they have done looking at different types of construction.
they need and they have a well-defined plan of how they can put that to use. they have a choice that they will have to make up declaring the national emergency and then using money from somewhere to film some kind of barrier if you can't give me a definitive and final answer my hope would be that the emergency money fo for that purpose would come out of emergency money for another purpose would hate to see that happen but that would be the best possible alternative i can think of especially taking money from the military construction because those projects have been in the pipeline for years and years and that would be disruptive so my hope would be that emergency to emergency.
do you have any thoughts on those lines? >> of this at this stage the president hasn't chosen to declare the national emergency assuming that that was the authority authorized by the president and his declaration thing to make the determination that by undertaking these military construction projects that was necessary to support the use of the armed forces and then we would flow from there. there are only limited authorities available to the defense department, and directed bisdirected by the president or authorized i should say to pursue them he would identify the declaration with those authorities were. >> thank you. i will reiterate my hope is congress does the right thing and he authorized money and we don't have to go down that road
at all. i'd like to ask a question and you've already done a good job of explaining the benefits that accrue when the missions are being performed to the people during those missions. you talk about the facilities, troops, engineering, medical. when it comes to readiness we talk about the construction but also about training as the other component in the worldwide humanitarian mission the outbreak in africa, tsunamis, earthquakes and there's another humanitarian component to the southern border crisis as well as the national security component. when our medical troops, for instance, are helping of homeland security on the border, or they gaining experience that helps them were if they are
giving a humanitarian mission in africa does that help them in their professional and military career? >> with each of skil the skill s it varies a bit. they are doing follow-up screenings after the initial medical screening so most of those are routine elements, and i could make the argument if i employ those same people overseas to afghanistan they might receive a higher level of training, but i think that we've placed a high degree of importance i do think there's varying degrees to be honest with you on how much training value you receive from each particular mission to mis, somee than others.
>> thank you, mr. chairman. i yield back. >> during operation desert storm, the president invoked the national emergency twice citing the emergency military construction authorit authorityg to the department of defense records, but it's funded a the project and i'm looking at them right now the runway the medical facilities, barracks, security measures have weapons of mass destruction etc., etc. to name a few. all the projects were determined as necessary to support the forces and declared emergency, which makes them in need of runway for aircraft to land, places for service members to live and receive healthcare. how was the portable necessary to support the use of armed forces and what authorities would be needed to make that determination?
>> that is a hypothetical. the president has a range of different authorities he can then both and each of them are tied to walls that have specific requirements that would dictate determination is a calculus for the department to go through to determine whether or not you could justify using those funds to build the barrier. you would have to show the dod benefits whether the argument would be we no longer have to deploy 5900 people to the wall and look at that more deeply to
see that it's a justifiable cause effect in the rhetoric and the discussion that is ensuing which projects would be scrapped? the president would need to invoke title x which is the military construction position to authorize. we've only done the preliminary preplanning for the list of military construction projects because the president hasn't taken that step. last year i received a call from some of my constituents who have to endure living on base in a housing environment with their
families that they are expected to live. at fort benning georgia to be exact. with children being exposed to high levels of lead they are not dealing with health related disabilities and other symptoms but now there is a chance that we will neglect service members again this time it would be for again the need with all. could any of these.
to authorize section 2808 at the defense department we are not making trades with those funds. >> but would you agree you have to take funding from the existing priority is it would leave some of those priorities without funding? or is there enough of a funding surplus right now available for the wall? >> for the purpose be instead of a it would obviously come from one source to another. that road cannot be traversed
and these funds that would go towards the wall be taken away from being able to rehabilitate the road. or thare the troops that are currently deployed along with the customs and border patrol agents but they've did it for the charges they've been charged with are they also opened the customs and border patrol agents since the flow of narcotics into the united states? >> yes. >> very good.
we are now having a system with those resources dhs could address themselves if properly funded. >> certainly the department of homeland security books. >> can you talk a little louder. >> as we understand looking for the supplementation from the dod and the specialized skills they bring to the table but other
cases if they possess those in the response what percentage of the overall his military specific versus the lack of resources? >> to answer your question, none of the capabilities we are providing our combat capabilities. it's not a war zone along the border. and so, all -- i talked about aviation, paralegal, mechanics, facilities, medical none of that is a unique military skill set. >> so sitting here today discussing this because we failed to adequately deal with a comprehensive solution to the border so now we are trying to basically put our finger until congress does its job.
for the fiscal conservatives on the other side of the aisle they are $22 trillion in debt and deficit is going to be a trillion dollars this year. we just cut taxes by somewhere in the neighborhood of $2 trillion. on this committee, we hear repeatedly about all the areas in the department of defense have gone underfunded. when are you going to find all this extra money in the department of security is to give them more money from 2005 until now we have quadrupled in
the 700 miles of wall and we have drowned and sensors and increased the amount of money that we spend on border security so i'm not sure the solution here is spend money so we don't have ttheydon't have to steal ie department of defense. we have to make a budget that works for all of us. it's got to be something we are going to wrestle with once they try to get the budget in place this year because there are a lot of needs in the discretionary budget over a trillion dollars and the department of homeland security is part of the end we at the dod are like 55% of that so if we get too excited about giving more money to the dhs it's wide open to discussion that we have to have the choices. >> i will avoid getting into the broad budget issues which obviously affect a whole variety of things and i would point out when the dod, homeland security
or any of the other agencies they have to formulate the budget months in advance of it even coming to us. one of the things have changed is now we have thousands, tens of thousands coming in caravans that we haven't seen before and i think if they look at the statistics which are provided by the department of homeland security, the days when we had a greater number of people but most of them are from mexico and you can simply put them back across the border very different from the large family groups from ten or 12,000 people comi coming. we have to be more flexible to respond to the changing circumstances i think that is what the president is trying to do and i would prefer he not have to resort to the dod our
government has to respond and that is very true we need a better position to respond. >> are you familiar with the 2018 national defense strategy because you helped write that is that correct? >> i didn't help ride it. >> are you familiar with the content? >> for the utilization purposes to guide the activities of the defense department and others on prioritizing effort.
>> i would suggest also is an important document as well when we are looking at the overall strategic priorities it is an important budget document because that is when we look for words fiscal year 19 to 2023 budget request. in that whole document with the term southern border, were those words ever in that document? >> i don't recall that in the
classified version. >> this is an important hearing because things are not in sync. we have to make those decisions and assess priority in relying on our defense and military to tell us what those priorities are so we can fund them. i think we are at a point where i am hearing the terms just how to give priority is, everything is important, things that are not even mentioned in the strategic document we are supposed to use to make those priorities are now coming to the forefront and there is a crisis
surrounding those things. the two things havbut the two tt in sync and how can this committee best function because we cannot function with this ths resources going forward if we have to take a turn and look at different views quote on quote were we have to be creative. those things make our jobs next to impossible. >> i would commend your knowledge that is our guidepost we are trying to live that life to make that vision and there are some hard choices described in the document and then setting up the position for the future. some of it is an uncomfortable reality that we have to confront. with respect to the civil authorities i'd say those kinds of requests, and we do not lack
the ability to prioritize resources and i think you will see in the coming budget that we have made a major effort to try to tackle on the lives of the national defense strategy. with respect to the support to civil authorities this is a long-standing activity department of defense has done and it's not just limited to the southern border for example this coming weekend at the super bowl, the defense department will provide assets and support and we will also provide support to the civil authorities for the typthat type of activity and there's a range of others, fires, floods, etc.. i would just say this i have a great deal of confidence and that's been traditionally done but i see a difference in scope that is occurring in the discussions we are having now with the southern border and the effect of that on the readiness and almost five made central
areas of threat, china, russia, north korea, iran, terrorism groups. in that document that is i think our guidepost going for, the things that are suddenly getting so much more resources drawn to them i will just say this have to do a better job if you're going to act in a bipartisan way listening to our military defense to have a more accountable and a more timely demonstration of what these priorities are. >> thank you for your role in keeping the nation safe from threats both foreign and nearby. i would like to pause a little bit on that because i had an opportunity to go in october to the border, and i came away with
the impression that we are at war and it' as with the drug cad i'd spend time with the border patrol agency and he can actually see on the other side of the border they talked about how we were out funded in many ways and how they are taking advantage of so many people in this process and people are dying. last year we lost 72,000 people to drug overdoses. 72,000. that's more people than died in the entirety of the vietnam war and so we have a mission to protect people's lives including to counter the drug crisis, and the drugs are flowing across the border. agents are doing a wonderful job finding a lot of drugs and that's what people talk about here finding drugs at the port of entry, and i champion that i also know there's a lot of drugs that are making it across that
we are not catching and they are ending up in missouri and my family is. that's why we've got to counter this into the missouri national guard was deployed there last summer. they did an amazing job and had the cruise during the six months they were there did 470. section 284 of title ten of the code authorizes the dod to provide support to the counter drug activities to control for
counter drugs is already lost. >> i >> if it meets the criteria in section 284. >> i have to take into account the amount of fencing built. i think that it's very clear we've already given the authority to do that and we do have a critical mission to keep people safe and to make sure people don't die as a result of these transnational drug cartel activities, and currently they are.
i'm very hopeful that in the next three weeks we've come together in a bipartisan fashion to address the security issues as well as the humanitarian issues we have 60,000 unaccompanied children that were caught last year. 60,000. i'm a former teacher and mom and this is a humanitarian crisis we had two children die in as long as the incentive is within november but drug cartels are going to continue to take advantage of women and children and people are going to die. so, thank you for what you are doing and i will yield back. >> thank you, mr. chairman and good morning, secretary and good morning admiral. i want to build on extend the chairman asked earlier about the review for the dhs request. what we are dealing with in these emergencies the nation has
a process put in place with the national security council convening the national security agencies to be able to discuss and evaluate those considerations in how we respond to these types of emergencies. at the national security council for a number of crisis and emergencies, i saw how the collective process was important and something that strengthened the response making sure we are getting to the interagency buy-in and equities to consider the different efforts, so i wanted to ask what the decision last october with the deployment of active duty in response to the crisis were talking about, one interagency, what process at the nsc was conducted and further meetings that were pushing for that in the process and informing the response?
>> there were a series of meetings that were convened by the white house to review and coordinate the different departments and agencies and included the national security council as you mentioned. at times those are done and pursuant to the activities that other times more on the domestic policy council side of the ledger so there were quite a few of those meetings and they continued in the ongoing process you are right it is critical to coordinate with various activities because in this particular case the defense department is in the lead agency, we are providing support and augmentation to the department of homeland security. >> so prior to the dod decision to move forward to fulfill the request, there was a principled committee convened to move forward in those conclusions that informed response? spinnaker there were meetings typically chaired by other than losing the white house staff
that included members of the national security council staff with revealing the exact deployment of active duty forces obviously that was the defense department decision about how to source the request for assistance from the department of homeland security. >> who were the white house officials chairing the meeting that were feeling this particular request during that time. kovacs >> i'm going to have to get you the specifics, but certainly there were any number of those meetings that were held including with the white house, deputy chief of staff convening some of those as well as others such as i mentioned with the participation of the homeland security advisohomelandsecurityl security council staff. >> i appreciate that and it's incredibly important that we follow up, so i would like to hear greater detail on what meetings were happening and to whatever extent you can share
that because peace processes that are put in place are there for the nation's protection through the national security, put in place to make sure we have the constant deliberation and a certain amount of standards by which we approach every crisis whether it is domestic or foreign entities are the types of steps i understand why we have the situation room in the white house that allows us to gather and check politics at the door to make sure that we focus in on approaching these with the best security in mind for the american people, so that is why i ask those questions. thank you and i will yield back my question. >> thank you mr. chairman. i know the term agenda that the 2018 dhs budget was funded and to be honest with you, i remember very little discussion about the budget. i think it was just accepted, and it was done and i would point out to the other members that in the fiscal year 18 budget there was 1.375 billion
for the border wall constructi construction, 251 million in san diego, 445 million for the rio grande valley, 196 again for the rio grande valley, 445 san diego and tucson. 84 miles in all. the president has now requested funding for an additional hundred 15 miles of a significant portion of which is the completion of the border wall in those very areas where it was started under the 2018 appropriations where there was little if any discussion. certainly no discussion about it being a moral to do such a thing. i want to follow-up o follow upy colleague said, the congress lady from virginia. i believe the pink she was getting at, and i want to encourage my colleagues i don't intend to tell anybody on the committee but to do. but i would suggest they go down
to discuss the things that go on down there what can be done to stop the flow of drugs into the united states is while worthwhile and would be worth the committee having a hearing on. and if i may, reading from a report from latin america, forgive me i don't have the name. as of 2016, 43 of the most 50 homicidal cities in the planet weron the planetwere located on. is that consistent with your beliefs gentleman? >> i confess i'm not familiar with the particular statistics you are citing that there are a number of cities in latin america that you've experienced a high rate of homicide. >> the top 20 in the world with regard to homicide is located in central america.
>> i think one thing most of us would agree on and that is a report from the garbutt institute i think one of the things most of us in the committee would agree on is that the vast majority of the violence is the end result of the trafficking of drugs and the money that comes from drugs to the cartels in those regions do you think that is a fair statement flex >> yes sir. >> admiral, with regards to if you talk to the leadership down there, they will tell you that on a regular basis they know where the drug czar, we knew exactly where they were at some point in the event that didn't have the assets to go after them. is that a fair statement of what
you hear from your colleagues? >> yes sir. they're never satisfied with the amount of resources they have. in on thiand on this responsibih respect to counternarcotics. >> said since september 11, my understanding and certainly the numbers vary a little bit somewhere around 10,000 americans have lost their lives in what he called the global war on terror. but pretty close to accurate of a number flex >> i think it is about right. >> 5,000 americans every month of drug overdoses. more so today than just a few years ago. it's growing quite honestly exponentially. it's baffling to me that we give them the leftovers when these acts of terrorism in our backyard are coming from the western hemisphere.
we spent virtually nothing on so-called. 435.5 million, less than 1.5% of the u.s. counternarcotics budget that resulted in greater than 76% of the interdiction of drugs coming into the united states. mr. chairman, my time is about to expire, but i do hope that the committee will pursue the funding of the south and the role that they play in the war on drugs coming into this country, and what our help through that means can do with regards to bringing stability in central and south america. >> thank you, mr. scott. i think it is a point that if we are to have self-confident or testify at the normal hearing as we get ready for the budget, i think that is enormously important as we look at those needs. i will point out we do spend a lot of money in this country on
combating drugs coming into the country prosecuting. i would suggest there's a couple other areas we are dealing with drug problems. one, it is much more of a demand problem than it is a supply problem. we spent a lot of money trying to cut it off and send a lot of people to jail. we have to figure out how to get americans to stop demanding so many drugs come in a huge part of that is making treatment available. i know in my own state, there are people who want treatment for various drug addictions who cannot get it because they either don't have come there simply are not any bid for people to provide it or they don't have the health care dollars to pay for it. and if you ask any expert who studies the drug problem what is more important to stopping it from supply or demand, every single one of them will say demand as long as there is the unbelievable demand for drugs, they will find someway to get in
here no matter how many people they arrest or how many walls we build, we've got to do if i don't disagree with.com and we havhave come up with an understanding of the totality of the problem and also the finite resources that we talked about earlier. you are recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. iand you, mr. secretary and mr. admiral for being here today. i will keep my questions short and brief. we know the dhs requested the dod to improve 37 miles of the range of the barrier fencing and an estimated cost of $450 million w deal some of the navy took 5.7 million out of its operational maintenance budget in order to start that. we also know it was previously stated that the construction of the military backlog of the construction, there's there isg of military construction so my question is what maintenance had
to be referred o or delayed or canceled because of the transfer of maintenance money to this barrier wall, and going forward what construction is going to have to be canceled or future maintenance is going to have to be delayed or canceled because of the money going to improve this 37 miles of barrier wall? splenic as you point out along the goldwater range which is an active bombing range, there was a request from the department of homeland security to examine a larger barrier. we have not performed military construction funds for that. the navy used 5.7 million to conduct planning in the event the decision is made to erect such a barrier but the decision to use construction bonds has not yet occurred. that came from the operations and maintenance accounts and those are broad accounts in which we draw from to support the operations for the defense
department. >> being a former navy supply officer, i know how hard the commands fight for that money and i know how devastating it can be when it's taken away and i'm sure the commanding officer could have used that money. saying now my readiness is delay because it's been taken away, do we have a list of any deeper or canceled maintenance that had to be stopped because this money has been transferred? >> i will have to take that for the record and see if there are any specific lists that we can provide. secondly, i know that and we talked about the military construction and the president and acts the pillars in order to declare an emergency and where that money would come from. i know you can't answer a hypothetical question or you don't want to answer a hypothetical question, but will you commit to providing a list
tboostto the committee in the et the authority by the president has triggered including the specific impact of military readiness and the requirements of each project that is identified for cancellation or the referral of the president in fact does declare an emergency in order to build this wall? sputnik again the president hasn't made such a declaration at this point. depending on which part of the wall he would authorize the dod to act pursuant to the end of that guide us another path that we would have to meet the requirements, so it may not involve military construction depending on should the president invokes such authority and then what he should decide in the declaratiocite inthe dece pretty premature since we don't possess the list at this point to provide that.
>> if the situation does occur will you provide a list to the committee telling us what construction is being canceled? >> we would certainly operate in accordance with the law. i think here we are not yet at the stage where we would reach such a question and so we would obviously keep the committee informed about our activities, but consistent with the requirements in whatever applicable law was conducted and depending which authority the president signed a there's different requirements that apply as i'm sure you are aware. >> id for my time back. >> 9/11 as we know that resulted in the death o deaths of roughl0 americans in new york, pennsylvania and virginia in the washington, d.c. area. the net effect for 3,000 lives was to invade iraq and afghanistan at the cost of trillions of dollars and many thousands of lost lives by
military personnel and civilian support personnel. in contrast, illegal aliens cost roughly 2,000 homicides on american soil per year at least over 2,000 illegal aliens were apprehended by federal law enforcement officers in fiscal year 2018 for homicides and as was mentioned earlier that the congresswoman and congressman scott, drug overdoses cost roughly 70,000 american lives per year and the evidence is overwhelming that a substantial portion of the drugs, those poisons that cause the los causf american lives come across our southern border illegally. in terms of lost american lives then, our southern border combined with homicides of illegal aliens far exceeds the
loss of lives caused by 9/11. with that as a backdrop i want to direct your attention to the united states code to 84, which authorizes president trump to deploy the military to southern border to build fences and do a lot of other things and if you look it up in the dictionary word fence includes the word of barrier and berrier includes wall made of a variety of materials so that having been said, it seems to me ten u.s. code 34 can be used by the president of the united states to direct the military to build a wall. as of today, you mentioned military forces along the southern border. have any of them been deployed pursuant to 24? >> i don't believe any of the forces have been deployed pursuant to 24. you are correct however the use
of authority would authorize the secretary defense to direct the barriers, roads sensing and those types of materials for drug smuggling. >> does ten usc 284 as you understand that require the declaration of the national emergency before it is implemented? >> no, it does not. >> has president trump to your knowledge of reduced ten usc 284 to direct the military to build the wall that is necessary for border security? >> no, not to my knowledge, congressman. >> if president trump were direct the pentagon united states military pursuant to ten usc 284 to build such barriers to secure our southern border from drug trafficking and international crime cartels, but the united states military obey that order?
>> if we judge it to be a lawful order, yes sir, and i assume it would be. >> thank you. i appreciate your responses and i will yield back the remainder of my time. >> thank you. >> gentlemen, thank you so much for your time. i am in a member of congress and new leaf on the readiness subcommittee so most of my questions will have to do with the readiness aspect of this. and i understand for years our department has been briefing the readiness o of the armed forces and so to that end i would love it if you are able to talk us through a couple of the units that are deployed at the border and what their mission is and if you could tell us what they would be doing if they were not on the orde order right now nor. >> that's a good question. we have engineering battalions who right now it is actually a joint project with both army
engineers and air force voters who are welding wire above the wall in sections of arizona and california. those particular units would not probably be getting that if they were not deployed in the southern part of. i am not sure where they were in readiness cycle that i can look uup that information and try to give you a sense with respect to readiness some units either have or will this company level training opportunities based on the deployment. ..
so that we can understand from a quantitative perspective how the readiness is has been affected positively or negatively, my second question is for either of you, and reading your preparation material that in some cases, small portion in some cases individuals are being deployed from their units, are we hurting their home unit training readiness, are we repeating or impairing individual career? >> i don't think it's a significant impact. basically short durations, we have tried whenever the possible to deploy our personnel units instead of deploying them individually. that is how they were trained and certified in trying to maintain that construct, so we get the most out of the deployment down to the border. there is a cost with respect to
all time, we have to recover that. there is no way around that. we have to minimize the time a way to minimize the recovery. >> it definitely is clear in the preparation materials that i read that there were some individuals and small groups of people that have been in deploy. is there any way of capturing the impact of that to record back to us on a quantitative respective? in the next? i have is for mr. roof. estates of the secretary of defense to ensure the provision of any law enforcement is the adversary affect the unitas'. are you aware of any directives or policy statements put forth to the department to ensure any readiness of the border has been mitigated? >> the deployments down to the border area are consistent with our domestic authority and are
not employed, they are not engaged in law enforcement activities. the secretary does gauge their impact on readiness. we track that through regular reporting system. depending on the units in some cases, it's increased in other cases declined. that varies over the course of deployment. >> i am not certain if i heard a yes or no answer to the question. i was asking if there are any directed policies put forth by the department? >> could i ask you to clarify, you're asking for a directive that changes the present policy >> i'm looking at how the directives are being implemented specifically. >> i am not aware of any change from our past practice. >> is that a no answer? >> i'll confess that i not properly understand your question. >> i yield the rest of my time. think user. >> thank you, mr. chairman.
at this hearing we heard, instead of already established that the current u.s. military presence on the southern border is indeed similar in size and scope to the dod support to border protection and security over the previous two ministrations. i understand that the dod pays the bill to support dhs shoot through personnel funds. usually to the tune of about a hundred million dollars. year. my question and this will build upon some of the previous question, what is any readiness function go unfunded or an executed because of the additional cost to support operation guardian support, in the previous response you touched upon the cost because of dwell time. can you go further into on the dwell time issue but any other readiness impacts. >> in terms of monetary cost, reprogram too, all to get back
to you what the trades were. in order to make that happen. we didn't do something. were not gonna do something. based on the deployment. i'll have to go back and take a look at that in order to give you a more concise answer. >> i think that is really important that we get the information. building upon that, and this is touched upon previously but i like more specifics, can you describe what the training value is to active duty army in a marine corps that is deployed to the southern border? and are we ensuring that the right types of units perform the right types of duties to enhance their training and readiness? >> i think that we have done an excellent job at matching specific skill sets and units that have been trade in those missionaries that were along the border. >> can you give an example. >> i think an example as military police. we are using them an omission to
protect to those ports of entry. they are the absolute perfect unit to perform that function. i mentioned earlier, they received great training that they have done with cvt. >> my last question is, since the october 20 a request, how specifically has border points be hardened during the initial point of active duty personnel. and what specifically does that hardening involved in what specific points were in hearted. >> there were 22 points of entry along the four southern states that were in the nine sectors of cvp. at those barriers -- out those areas, around the point of entry, 70 miles of wire was a placed existing barrier, to
control vehicle traffic. there is a request for jersey barriers for other vehicle sheet p. in other cases, to harden the specific location, construction was performed to create barriers in shipping containers and things of that nature. it buried on depending on what point of entry. >> thank you very much i yield back. >> thank you mr. carl. >> thank you secretary route, i have been struggling to piece together a chronology of the decision to send active-duty troops to the border and me and my colleagues have pointed out there is a hong history of reserve cooperation support but what distinguishes this is the use of active duty in the number of active-duty troops. i am also very concerned of always with operational need, driving the new use of forces as
opposed to politics. can you help me answer some question. who originated the idea to send active-duty soldiers to the border? did the idea come out of the white house or out of the department of homeland security customer. >> neither sir. with the request is received for assistance by the department of homeland security, they are the mission holder, they provide a request for assistance where they are unable to meet their needs to the defense department. then the defense department look it's at the needs and tries to identify from the total force the best way to source the mission need. and that is where the decision ended up being made in a particular case. >> so there was a determination that there were no sufficient national guard reserve forces available to meet the request?
>> it was primarily driven by timing. i described at the time the direction came from the white house, the direction was to move forces expeditiously to the border. based on the fact, you said that directive came from the white house? >> that directive came from the white house yes. as i recall. so that direction for us -- not necessarily to use active-duty forces, that was a decision made inside the department. >> the second question relates to the living conditions for our troops on the border. there were reports that soldiers and tents without running water, can you explain the living conditions for the soldiers
right now? >> my understandings as the living conditions are pretty good for deployed units that are living in tents. i haven't heard any reports of lack of running water or any facilities that they require. >> how many soldiers are living in tents right now ? >> i would have to get back to you on an exact count. based on the omission and location, we probably have some people in hotels particularly as we move and transition into the missions between the poe's, out in the middle of the desert in some cases. i will have to get back to you with specifics. >> you said earlier that barriers are ineffective unless you are surveilling them. one of the request from dhs is to build an additional hundred and 50 miles of wire by march this year. is it your understanding that that will be surveilled mileage customer. >> it is not.
i don't know what cvt's plan is along the section of wired wall. i don't know what their long-term plan is. >> so by your definition that a barrier has to be surveilled to be effective, with some of that mileage be an effective? >> i am not sure if there is. we received the request for assistance again from the customs and border patrol but it is our understanding that they do have a surveillance plan along barriers and sometimes is to go in addition to existing infrastructure that's there. >> i understand that, but i would like some clarification whether or not the resources that are being used by the department of defense are effectively being used. and if there is no coordination between dhs and dod to make sure that is happening, we definitely
need to make sure it is. >> there is close coordination and part of the recent request from the department of homeland security is about mobile surveillance, to provide additional capability to detect and monitor the movements and activities of the border. >> thank you, you back. >> thank you, we're going to try to wrap this up at 1230 because i don't want to abuse the pentagon witnesses they send them over to me. we may support little bit past that bubble if we can move as quickly as possible that would be great. mr. gates. >> thank you, mr. chairman. the changing classification of the mission. for the mission itself or changing but it goes from ts to tss di or some other classification, and a world -- and this hasn't happened yet, would we expect those missions
to be reevaluated in terms of the classic eight patient or will we expect those projects to boost to the top of the list in a re- prioritization customer. >> i am not sure i understand your question specifically sir. >> in a world of which one of the cost drivers in the fact that some facilities have to go to ts to sei, what goes through what happens to those types of projects in a world in which resources are not available for that type of construction. >> i would be speculating, and not been involved with any initial work that is gone on to take her work at what those metrics might be. i will get back to you with a better answer. >> my request would be in a
world of which that were to happen, that we look at those specific types of projects and determine the impact on them. and i like to yield my remaining time. >> thank you very much. >> thank you, mr. chairman. as a pentagon alum, i have been on the other side their thinking for coming. so broadly speaking, i think we all agree that the pentagon is providing the support for many decades. is there an effort to get to the point where the pentagon is not providing the support? >> if we lectured the dhs appropriation and looked at what you are being requested, is that roughly match or is there some reason that the national guard bureau in particular wants to or needs to or provides training training, or are we all just
become very comfortable with the steady-state ? >> i would say that the department of homeland security and border patrol deploy a larger number of agents. a larger number of resources to the border. dod's are to augment them. as situation arise and they are varied over the years, there has been a steady stream for decades where the defense department has provided that support. sometimes a nature is adjusted. [inaudible] >> the dhs has increased right? and the chairman noted apprehensions have decreased. are you seeing an increase or decrease at your request over time over the last several years aside from the recent caravan coming from dhs. >> in the last year we have seen and up in request and the
increased activity in the flow. the volume is instructive, last year over 500,000 apprehensions by our law enforcement authorities, a larger number of people entered the country and were not apprehended. the last two years alone, a larger number than the population of washington, d.c. have been apprehended for the city the size of san francisco. apprehensions in two years. >> on the active-duty side i would like to >> i would>> be very interested in what the active-duty troops are not doing. are the active-duty troops not doing. what was the opportunity cost, did they miss training rotation, are they in the lineup for deployment, the effect on dwell time, just understanding better. >> and i like to echo mr. scott and the importance. secretary and navy spencer has indicated that ships are critical to the deterrent of
drugs coming across our waterways. they also indicated that we are only stemming a quarter of what we are detecting. is there any consideration or reconsideration for the navy providing more assets to south calm, particularly lcs which should be suited for that mission? >> is not a navy cost. i go back to the national defense strategy and unpopular as it is, it is a ruthless prioritization. i don't think that anybody in uniform disagrees at the severity of the drug problem,. >> the time is expired. >> thank you for joining us. i have been in your seat and i know it is getting on in time here so thank you for sticking with us. as someone who is at the pentagon and married to a 30 year army veteran and has a
stepdaughter on active duty right now. i am extremely concerned that we preserve the perception and reality that the u.s. military is apolitical. so the three concerns are the three questions, one, the timing of the decision to deploy. which is hard to feel wasn't political given how close it was to the mentors. number two, the choice to put active-duty folks down there instead of guard which i absolutely agree has been done for a long time by many ministrations. and three, the missions that those active-duty folks are pursuing in any bleed over into law enforcement activities which of course goes back to the very founding of her state. on the choice to deploy on the timing, and the answer to mr. crowe's question, it was a directive from the white house is that correct? in the form of a memo questioning. >> as best as i can recall. not so specific of active-duty
be deployed but of the u.s. military response. >> accompanying that is a formal request for assistance from the department of homeland security. >> of course. >> was there any civilian or military industries to three-star rank above or disagree or push back on a request that the timing of the request. >> to your acknowledge questioning. >> there was discussions about military advice on how we should respond. >> was there any formal defendant or transmission effect with any civilian or military at three-star above? >> no. >> on the choice of duty, i heard your reply that it was available forces at that time, and having to get to the border very quickly.
is there any other factors that went into the decision to use active-duty overgaard besides speed for the record? intelligence reporting, obviously ran unclassified setting, any other factors on record that led to the decision to use active-duty? >> i think other factors were capacity, the right skill sets, readiness impacts were considered, and timing was key. >> was ever consideration that we have now seen stories come out about ms. stated talking points about the terrorist threat coming out of the very entry caravans, the number of tears that were coming across the board in that area. was there a threat assessment to any way that led to the choice used active-duty overgaard?
>> no. >> the missions, we all know that the u.s. military cannot perform law enforcement activity, and citing the united states, we all believe that important, i understand that there was a memo that was sent over by chief of staff kelly, indicating that an agreement with the laws it stands, no activities are so sweet take place unless directed by the the president of the united states. >> no. >> no. >> thanks gentleman i yield the rest of my time. >> thank you chairman and i want to thank both of you for coming in and your leadership in your service, it's carrying our country. american citizens are suffering on the impact. we talked for drugs today, human trafficking, the criminals and get through the victimize,
extremism, and we can go on and on. 702000 americans this year will suffer by an overdose. and much of the drugs are coming over from our southern border site. i would make the statement that republicans and democrats must look together and negotiate and solve this problem in good faith. americans demanded. we can do better. i just want to clarify a couple of your key points from our constituents in nebraska. i just want to clarify some points and i were right. is the current deployment consistent with past president of republican and democratic room administrations questioning. >> yes. >> is a current deployment is consistent with law. >> absolutely. >> is a current deployment supportive and inherent federal function. >> yes. >> i think those are key points that we need to distress. about a year ago he said that
some of the pathways used by criminal organizations in south and central america are being excluded by terrorists. the guatemalan ambassador personally told me he has detained dozens of extremists within the country, that were coming to our country with false edification. a year ago individuals have been obtained south of the border with terrorists into conduct attacks against her homeland. can you give us an update of what terrorism is on our southern border. >> yes or, i will say that the threat is real, i will also say that we have a significant presence of special forces in south america as we speak. they are conducting training missions.
when we talk about priorities and department of defense, and the fact that we are resource, it is in our best interest to form those partnerships to help those countries take those problems whenever they can. and that is an example in south america getting that registry. >> are there any other updates that you can share by setting on the terrorist activity on south and central america. the news i have is a mental. >> we need a briefing to get an update on that. >> thank you i yield back. >> thank you gentlemen, thank you for your preparation, you're obviously -- have taken quite a bit of time to come here. and thank you to your stack for the preparation as well. i was happy to hear from my colleague that the national guard troops were excited and enjoyed being deployed on these extra missions. i've heard from some of the of the national guardsmen as well.
i can tell you that are active-duty servicemen and women do not always enjoy the action appointments. especially as they come right before the holidays, over things giving in christmas, as this one did. i bring this up because i'm really concerned over the last several years we have seen significant strain on armed forces. from the five accidents in the seven fleets in the tragic loss of 17 cell years aboard the uss fitzgerald. two are special forces leaderships expressing concern at the high rate of deployment and how it's affecting recruitment. to secretary madison self highlighting the need to restore readiness to a national guard by resetting their equipment. we have seen strengths in our military and i know the admiral gill day have been working very hard to get troops back home with their families.
i am sure during your service you saw big difference after 911. given that, it is my understanding that the troops on the border are providing the following capabilities, planning and aviation support, medical teams, mobile surveillance, camera operations, temporary housing and personal protective equipment for cpp personnel. are any of these missions, that the dhs or contractors for the dhs cannot provide? >> the starting point is the dhs making an assessment that the organic need mentation. and therefore they're making a request to the defense
department for support to civil authorities. that is the triggering event. obviously the cpp and homeland security possess other things such as helicopters and medical personnel in addition to the defense department. depending on the circumstances, we work with them to develop an understanding in the mission. their assets were insufficient by themselves. they made a request for assistance. >> so they made the determination that there insufficient, were they giving sufficient assets, could they understand those missions? >> in a general sense yes, for example some of the helicopter support the dod has provided, if the dhs assume that they have sufficient support, they couldn't fit that mission need themselves. >> the reason i'm asking is because you yourself said, i am certainly interested in everything rotary wing, the needs overseas are very great
now that we are providing us on the border, the balance between what dhs should be doing and what active-duty military troops should be doing is something that i'm very interested in. what i am looking for, should the dhs really be advocating for better supplies and then we, can really help our troops perform their missions and their traditional missions especially overseas, afghanistan and iraq, as well is where officials forces are deployed across the world in south america. i guess that is something that i think we need to continue to look into. i will talk to you a bit, some of the nation's greatest threats are the security vulnerability in the land, air and seaports. this is particularly something i care about being about from new
jersey because of some of the largest imports in the united states. their new and emerging threats and i'm concerned that all this talk about border security when we don't include our other ports of entry is really missing some of the emerging threats, i bring this up because as last tuesday night a new york airport, one of the 15 busiest airports in the country was shut down for an hour after reports of an unauthorized drone when it entered. this pastor economies $65 million and disrupted many people's lives. so given that, i will come back to that think every time. >> at the end there will be an opportunity to submit questions and statements. >> thank you, mr. chairman. in the new york times article dated november 10, 2018, an ominous pentagon officials were
quoted deriding the deployment of an expensive waste of time and resources in a morale killer to boot, you know who those and ominous sources of the pentagon were to say it was a waste of time. >> no, sir, obviously this is a mission that we take seriously. though we have executed before and we are executing in support of her colleagues at the customs and border protection. >> clearly you would agree that everything that we heard over the last couple hours but contradict those sources you call this deployment a waste of time would you agree? >> yes, border security is in national security. that is part of the defense department submission. >> november 15, 2018, chuck hagel said it is a waste of time, it is clear to me that he
is using the military as political pawns which is completely irresponsible, everything that we heard over the past couple of hours would clearly contradict former secretary hagel's account of what the border troops have contributed to. >> i am not read his comments but i can say our mission is devoted to supporting the customs of birth o border patro. there is a legitimate on city mission that we have performed over the years. >> later in the article, it is quoted saying, troops often find themselves with little to do, they fill their time during a football around, texting their girlfriend, exercising or waiting for the outdoor to open. wouldn't you agree that that quote and these descriptions are not just disrespectful but honored to be determined and women in uniform.
>> are men and women are very devoted to the missions they absent upon. in the behavior you're talking about such as during a football, not on. >> in your opening statement you talk about the surveillance mission. i wonder if you can -- women talk to holland about that, can you describe her echo what is involved with that mission and how her troops have contributed to that. >> we are just transitioning now to the missions at the porch of entry to the surveillance mission to ports of entry. we have an ongoing pilot program right now with the marine corps with a special. >> tech seven that is working with cbp and one of the things were trying to do is get her arms around the exact requirement with respect to manpower.
the system is a little bit different than the systems that we have in the marine corps. or in the navy or in the army, so there will be a training. but their trucks and vans that have a surveillance suite in the mission is to conduct surveillance, detection and monitoring between the poe's so that we can enqueue cdp to depict the pain the people. simple mission but you go back to the effectiveness of a barrier, or wall that is effective without surveillance. we owe your report out. on whether or not on the effectiveness of this operation. we have direction from the secretary of defense to conduct an assessment within less than 90 days. if i get is that a moment ago, you talked about turnaround footballs, we have tried really hard not to waste people's time
down at the border. so there have been occasions when we hav haven't gotten it rt in respective numbers. maybe we had excess capacity, but we have brought those people back when we realize that we made a mistake. we're not trying to just have a follow-up down there with the people. >> i appreciate that, after hearing your testimony and answers it is clear to me that our troops have played a valuable role at the border. we appreciate your testimony. i yield back. >> with three people left that want to ask question. it is after 1230. so that would quicker we can do it the more the witnesses will appreciate it. >> thank you, mr. chairman, and gentlemen for being here. i am thankful for your leadership and responses to the questions. i come from the us-mexico
border, i represent el paso, texas which has been one of the safest communities in the united states for two decades. the vast majority of the individuals that we are seeing coming to the southern border are people seeking asylum. they are not individuals here who are setting out to do us harm. i want to recall that in 1987 and would like for you all to help me out with us, a young man was shot and killed by a u.s. marine who is patrolling the border, can you help me and remind me and remind americans what are the rules of engagement when you are in communities like my own, like redford, texas, west texas. >> there are not rules of engagement we have forces deployed in domestic situations like this. they are actually standing rules for the use of force. they are guided to the officer
roy's to use nondeadly force in order to control an escalating situation. the emphasis in our training is towards de-escalation. how can use the minimal amount of force to get the problem under control so that it doesn't become a larger problem. we always have the right of self-defense, to use deadly force, we we only use deadly force when all other means have failed or cannot be reasonably employed. so the emphasis is on lethal, i would tell you the trip so we have at the border have not been in a position to have contact with migrants. the medical personnel yes, but even the protection personnel to protect cdp, they are the fourth or fifth back in terms of
defense. i hope that answers your question. with respect to the use of force. >> yes thank you so much. another follow-up question on a separate topic, last summer during the height of the family separation crisis, the department of homeland security asked the department of defense to prepare to receive unaccompanied minors as some of the military installations, my district was identified as one of those potential sites. can you provide us with an update, has any other sites been identified, what is the status of this, and would you commit to notifying the committee of any updates on the topics? >> i would say you correctly pointed out last year, the department of homeland, hhs, made request of the defense department for supplementary housing for unaccompanied alien children. there is a separate question for homeland security for housing
the families of migrants. in both cases the defense department reviewed our available facilities for temporary facilities to be erected. and we provided a favorable response to both of the department of hhs and dhs. those departments chose not to take advantage of those availabilities and they still have it to this imperative time. at present we don't have something ongoing on search for other locations that will notify the committee of. >> in the future, if that does come up again are you commit a fight to notifying the committee. >> we would certainly keep in contact with you on that. >> thank you i yield. >> thank you, mr. chairman, and thank you for staying. when do you think we might have some information regarding the opportunity cost in terms of our troops and our families?
any sense of housing that can get out? >> we will take a look at that as soon as we get back this afternoon and get back to you. i don't think it's been significant in terms of time. >> thank you. i want to go to the national emergency that we're talking about, and i understand the hypothetical if you will, but at the same time it's not so hypothetical if we're looking at three weeks from now, what does that look like from the point of the military? >> as you know, the president has the authority to declare a national emergency of the congress. so obviously we would await such a determination by the congress of the president and depending on what authority in this case, the president i think you're referring to, and then trigger certain requirements stemming out which statue is utilized.
so we've looked at the prudent planning to determine whether legal obligations would be a make sure we understand the correct appreciation of those authority. at this stage, it hasn't progressed to the point that i'm aware of. >> i'm wondering of the illegal crossings, they are down from even george w. bush, even half from a million to about 400,000 at this time. is that the number of crossings, we didn't declare a national emergency at that time, bush did not do that. >> what is it now. >> the numbers of crossings have fluctuated over the years. last year, and we rely on the department of homeland security for the data, their number of apprehensions, there is a larger
number of people that come across that are apprehended of course, they gave us a 520 1,000 in fiscal year 2018 which is up from 415,000. the previous fiscal year. the difference is the caravans and the nature of the asylum-seekers. >> is the nature of the asylum-seekers what they need something different. so for more judges and processing capabilities perhaps that is really what is needed, not necessarily declaring a national emergency. i'm wondering from my constituents, they'll live on the border. as does my colleague. so how do we see that? they tell the military to define also clearly why is this a
national emergency? what are there to do and how do they protect the children? how do they protect their families? i don't know the anybody dashed we have a national emergency for natural disasters, but i don't think in the state of california or in the country we have declared that, other presidents have not attempted to do that even though the situation or down. we owe it to people to try and explain that a little bit better. the other thing very quickly, the concern of larger agents. just this weekend i had to be talking to a reporter patrol agent who is sharing with me what we know, they need more agents. we put more money into that, we actually had, one contractor who did a miserable job at apple was doing better. but we also have a tremendous number of people who left. the service. how are we going to keep up? and what role do these
discussions have? mike and sexually it really we've made a very difficult for people to be an agent today. >> is not your problem but i just think it's one that we need to recognize if we are putting our money and, that's great, but we are not hiring the people. we are losing as many people as we are hiring. thank you very much for being here. >> thank you, mr. chairman and thank you for indulging us. i'm going to be as brief as possible. let me first say that i wish my colleague on the other side of the aisle was still here. he referenced a servicemember as being disrespectful for commenting that it was a waste of time. i would suggest that that's the actions of a whistleblower. not somebody who is being disrespectful. i spent christmas eve at the border serving our troops.
in addition to doing that i have three one-hour meetings with different groups at the border. the colonel there said to me at the end of my time, our mission is complete here. that was on december 24. the service members told me placing wire at the border. they also said that people who are climbing over those fences and walls are running away, they are sitting on the wire or at the wire waiting for a cbp officer to come dashed so they can be apprehended as asylum-seekers. i am concerned that the readiness that we should be working on with her service
members is not being done. many of the service members now have lost time with their families, a thanksgiving, christmas, new year's, are still there, they don't have an end of the mission date that they can rely on. i don't think this is the way to treat her service members. with all of that i'm going to ask you to, on that. if the mission is is complete where they still there. >> went 5900 troops, active duty deployed to the border. this was early november. that number was cut down to about 2400 by christmas. and so what we have tried to do is systematically reduced those numbers. if dhs said that they needed 70 miles of wire laid, and we lay that wire, we redeploy those people home. initially we deployed our troops to texas, arizona and california. when the migrant groups did not go to texas or arizona and they
went for san diego torture him district condo in turn, reduces numbers significantly almost ended 0. so we have tried to match the troops to requirement on a revolving basis as best we can. perhaps the military police grew up in san diego, he may have been talking about what was affected, that mission that they thought was complete when this migrants dissipated. and it's a fair comment to make. we have to be responsive in reducing those numbers as quickly as we can. >> before we leave, please include all member statements and material, we want to figure
>> on friday, white house officials gave more details about the state of the union address coming up on tuesday. the washington post reports the president will call on lawmakers to ratify new u.s.-canada trade agreement with mexico as well and announced determination to end u.s. foreign wars. they will report the speech will cover five major areas, immigration, what is security, trade and american