tv U.S. House of Representatives Legislative Business CSPAN February 9, 2016 12:00pm-2:01pm EST
people say that he wouldn't be expressly prohibited by the .s. house of representatives.] the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the house will be in order. the clerk: the speaker's rooms, washington, d.c. february 9, 2016. i hereby appoint the honorable blake farenthold to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, paul d. ryan, speaker of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will receive a message. the messenger: mr. speaker, a message from the president of the united states. the secretary: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: mr. secretary. the secretary: i'm directed by the president of the united states to deliver to the house of representatives a message in writing.
the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the order of the house of january 5, 2016, the chair will like to recognize members from lists submitted by the majority and minority leaders for morning hour debate. pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the chair declares the house to be in recess until 2:00 p.m. today.
among the items in the years over $4 trillion request, there's more than $1.8 billion in emergency funding to fight billion virus, and $19 increase to upgrade cybersecurity across agencies. you can see a link to our budget at c-span.org. and a number of briefings today on the president's proposals including shaun donovan and other white house administration officials outlining the budget plan. we'll have that about an hour 1:00 eastern time over on c-span2. on c-span3 a pentagon briefing, looking at what the budget proposal means for their department at 1:30. tonight, c-span will have results from new hampshire, the first in the nation primary, starting at 8:00 eastern with a simulcast from wmur in manchester and have victory and concession speeches and take your calls, facebook reaction and tweets. that all gets under way tonight
t 8:00 eastern here on c-span. >> i'm currently on the fence between hillary and bernie. and the most important thing in this election -- i'm a teacher. i want to know what their stance is on the common core and what they want to do about that. >> what's important to me is our national debt because it will affect us teens. what i find most important is not who you're voting for because i'm not endorsing anyone. i want you just get out to the polls, use your voice because your vote is your voice. use it. >> my number one issue in this campaign is getting big money out of politics. citizens united needs to be overturned. until we address that in our politics, everything else is just going to keep getting worse and worse. very small number of people are making decisions about what even comes before our -- the rest of the population and for
that reason i'm supporting bernie sanders. >> i believe it's every american citizen's duty to be politically active and to vote in elections. as a first-time voter, i'm trying to figure out what i like. i'm bouncing from candidate to candidate, campaign to campaign, events and i'm here at marco rubio's pancake breakfast. i believe there is a candidate for everyone, and i'm really excited to find out who i like and who i'll vote for. next a look at countering terrorist organizations. speakers including former homeland security secretary tom ridge, former u.s. senator joseph lieberman and others. >> ladies and gentlemen, if i
could have your attention. i'm mike and it's my great honor to welcome you to the 8th annual review of terrorism events, opportunities to deal with it and concepts and studies for how to prevent it from ever happening again. for the last 18 years the potomac institute has been the very proud home of the international center for terrorism studies that has been headed by professor alexander. i'm sure all of you are here because you know about yonah and the tremendous work he has done. we think of his center at the potomac institute as the foremost academic center for the study of terrorism in the world. it is affiliated literally with dozens of universities and think tanks around the world and publishes dozens of articles, seminar findings and books every year on almost every aspect of terrorism, how it is being carried out around the world and every part of the
world, how different parts of the world are dealing with it and how academics, states men and scholars can come together to offer up ways for -- to deal with it and to deal with the underlying causes of terrorism. this past year, yonah has number of iate a books on a number of issues like the islamic state, which is recently out, to a week on nato terrorism to the consolidated writings of osama bin laden. all of these available on our website and amazon and lexington press and we'll be very happy to direct you to them or to the many publications that the institute and the center published this year on the -- terrorism events around the world and what can be done to deal with them. i'd like to report to you in summary, after 18 years of looking at the issue at the
potomac institute that things are improving. i think if i'm going to put a happy face on it i can say those focusing on the issue, the academic study of it, the political focus of it around the world is increasing mightily and with great purpose. unfortunately, the threat is still there, growing, metastasizing and growing in ways that threaten more people than ever before. unfortunately, this is something that most likely our grandchildren will deal with. it is up to us to give them as many tools as we can. i'd like to ask you all to join me, however, at this moment in recognizing professor alexander. his contributions to not just academia but to the world are something we should all applaud and encourage and hope that it continues for the foreseeable future. professor yonah alexander.
[applause] we brought together today, yonah has brought together today a very experienced and senior panel to discuss these issues. we have a key note speaker who's currently serving as the director of the defense intelligence agency and the -- i'd like to introduce general al gray, the 29th commandant of the marine corps, chairman of the poe tamack institute board of regents. i know he'll kick me off the stage. grayisms published this last year by the potomac institute which documents -- [laughter] all of the things he said. general gray: i want to add my welcome to all of you and we're particularly honored this afternoon to have a very distinguished general officer speak to us in his key note
address. general vincent stewart is a great leader, has been -- is a great marine and i'm very honored, really, to have a chance to tell you a little bit about him. his biography is in your notes there so i won't go through all that, but i do want to mention that general stewart not only has had and held all of the key command assignments in the signal intelligence arena in the marine corps, in the combatant intelligence arena in the marine corps and has served also in staff and command positions everywhere from the department of defense, the fourth marine infantry, you name it, he's done it he's also a distinguished communications officer. he's an armor officer by original trade. he's been to many, many cools. in fact, eight different military schools and five of them were on my watch.
so that's my fault for sending him to too many schools. but he -- i say this because i think it's crucial that the intelligence community be infiltrated with a goodly number of nonintelligence people, operational people, people that have operational experience so you can do, not just the intelligence analysis, but the operational analysis, the data analysis, etc., from that standpoint. some of our greatest intelligence victories in all through our history were created really because you had operations and intelligence operating together and working together and thinking together. and so i'm very proud of you, vin, and without further ado, i'll turn things over to you. [applause] you can take as long as you want. general stewart: general gray
promised he would do a very short introduction. he has never called me distinguished so that's a first. thank you, sir. i'm going to try to do a couple things today. i'm going to try to talk a little bit about this terrorism topic. and then i want to touch a little bit about what we at d.i.a. think we're doing to help counterterrorism. so first of all, it is truly an honor to be here to sit next to governor ridge and on the podium with senator lieberman, our distinguished public servants is truly an honor for me. and so thank you all for inviting me to this event. combating terrorism is unmistakably an important topic on everyone's mind. today's agenda institutes a significant opportunity for haring and debating ideas, defining the threat as well as to identify opportunities to
undermine forces that use terror. i emphasize defining the threat for this reason. i've heard, and i'll talk a little bit more in detail, i ard it's all of islam to thugs and criminals. and until we settle upon which of these ends or somewhere in the middle that we're dealing with, we probably won't be able to define a coherent strategy, so we'll talk about that a little bit. i'll also, as i mentioned, take a mention to high lilet some of the things that d.i.a. is doing. terrorism is a direct assault on humanity. during our lifetime we've witnessed individual act of ideologically politically motivated terrorism transformed into sheer barbarism, covering vast areas of territory and shrouded in religious symbolism. although terrorism is not new,
it's a reality with increasing intensity. especially since the time i put on a uniform in the early 1980's. from hamas to hezbollah to al qaeda and now the self-proclaimed islamic state, terror is used as a violent tool to advance criminal and politically intimidating strategies. he recent paris, beirut, sbernsbern, malli, da'ish, isil, isis or whatever you'd like to call them, has now become a direct terrorist threat around the world, especially in yourp and here in america. more information is coming out about da'ish operatives allegedly here on u.s. soil. so these recent attacks may be just the beginning of violence perpetrated by da'ish, by their inspired lone wolf actors, by returning foreign fighters or da'ish-coordinated and directed attacks. in da'ish, we see what our
analysts call a state. we're simultaneously confronting both a quasi-military force with state-like features and transnational terrorist organization driven by religious ideology. like a state it claims territory, attempts to control its borders. it has an executive, a command and control structure, a set of laws, a taxation system. it builds an army and supposedly provides services as well. while not recognized as a state by modern nation state standards, it has been recognized by affiliates around the world who've accepted da'ish's goals of a global caliphate. da'ish has advanced this notion by marrying its technological capabilities with ideological incitement, to transform cyberspace into another dimension of this battle space. one with immediate effects on nontraditional battlefields marked which terrorist attacks
all over the world. the idea that the caliphate exists, both in physical and virtual domain, is da'ish's center of gravity. to highlight, last year's da'ish remained entrenched on iraqi and syria battlefields and expanded globally to libya, sinai, afghanistan, nigeria, algeria, saudi arabia, yemen and the caucuses. it even inspired terrorist attacks in beirut at approximately the same time frame as the paris attacks. this year, da'ish's growing more dangerous through emergent branches in mali, tunisia, somalia, bangladesh and indonesia, and it wouldn't surprise me to see them extend further into egypt. da'ish's likely to increase the pace and lethality of its transnational attacks bus it seeks to unleash violent actions and to provide a harsh
reaction from the west, thereby feuding its distore tiff narrative. we know that --ties tore tiff narrative. we know that it doesn't represent islam or the 1.4 billion muslims around the world and it is creating by force a caliphate, the true caliphate, a notion that is resonating among a very select segments of the sunni community who advocate violent jihadism. it is important to note that it takes all three of these words together to describe the current threat environment. in this setting, da'ish seeks not only to pit west and islam but the sectarian conflict between sunni and shiia, not so different from the violent jihadic groups like hezbollah. thess groups seek to create a chaotic environment in which the groups can thrive. these threats are exacerbated by the security challenges of the middle east which is now facing one of the most
dangerous and unpredictable periods in the last decade. middle east countries face simultaneous internal and external threats, including terrorism, subnational armed groups or insurgencies and conventional military threats. some nations have even attempted to eliminate their political or sectarian adversaries under the guise of combating terrorism. while da'ish might be at the forefront of our thoughts today, they are not the only nefarious organizations in town. increased international focus on da'ish allows al qaeda to recover from its degraded state and it enables similar groups to flourish. we must not forget al qaeda and its affiliates still exist. we cannot count them out. al qaeda alone, the afghanistan-pakistan border, al qaeda in the arabian peninsula, l qaeda in syria, while they
may not have advanced their goals in a caliphate, similar ideology and terror drive them. furthermore, the jury is still out on the largest state sponsor of terrorism, iran and its affiliates. we do not know yet if iran will behave responseably or how they will invest the $100 billion they received as a result of the joint comprehensive agreement. let's not forget that since january 19, 1984, iran has been listed as a state sponsor of terrorism. we will not take our eyes off of these threats. we also face uncertainty in south asia. the taliban has launched its first-ever winter offensive in order to come back in afghanistan and has increased attacks in pakistan. da'ish is attempting to expand its enterprise in the south and central asia as well as
southeast asia. drawing your attention to africa, i see a volatile security environment due to dysfunctional political systems and conflicts, creating permissive environment for transnational terrorism. in north africa, years of civil conflict over political control libya and expanding violent presence remain the most pressing security concern. even there, da'ish's established a strong hold in libya, causing instability and increasing illicit activities as well as increasing activity in algeria. west africa's lake chad regions are also contended with a number of violent jihadist groups. the recent terrorist attacks and a november, 2015, attack on a major hotel in mali highlights the expanded terrorism threat. in nigeria and the greater lake chad region, terror attacks by
boko haram, also known as the islamic state west african province, who are the most violent da'ish affiliate -- which is saying a great deal -- and are likely to continue since their alliance with da'ish. parts of central and eastern africa remains at risk of instability over the next year. al-shabaab attacks and control of rural areas will persist in somalia. the risk of ep sodic violence in the central african republic, the democratic republic of the congo, south sudan and sudan will continue despite peace and stability efforts. e key causes of instability, aging authoritarian leaders, lack of political transparency, corruption, suffocated civil societies, violation of human rights, religious extremism, insufficient economic opportunity and sparse social mobility are some among many. and they will continue to serve
as drivers for civil conflict, social cleavages, instability spillover and regional spoilers' involvement. all of these issues da'ish plays upon and blames the west for its challenges. these terrorist threats and the drivers of conflicts alone not taken into account the myriad of other global concerns, state actors, the economy and technology, have profound impact on the way da'ish shapes and sizes its force to deal with the future. our mission -- simply provide intelligence on foreign military capability and offer an environment that delivers decisive advantage to prevent and decisively win wars. we're one of three all-source intelligence agencies that effectively incorporates operation analysis as well as science and technology to support our mission. we face a complex security
environment marked by a broad spectrum of threats from aggressive nation states to nonstate actors. they are more in one of the war-fighting domains and spans across multiple categories and multiple regions. all of these have complications for future joint, interagency, multinational and public partnership at all levels. especially how our military power will be used, especially to counterterrorism in the gray zones. whether we're talking about the mountains of afghanistan or throughout cyberspace, in addition, while these efforts continue in the military realm, military action alone is not sufficient. diplomacy through collaboration is also a significant force multiplier. therefore, we must think of how we do business. we have to take a broader approach to partnerships,
collaboration across the services and the whole of government is no longer enough. fully integrated partnership with our key allied nations is now an imperative. our relationship with our allies, our military responses and the way that we practice intelligence must therefore adapt and poster for the -- posture for the future. we must separate with greater speed, flexibility, jointness, partnership and accuracy. the way to do that is through integration, not as an in-state but as a means to an -- end state but as a means to an end. d.i.a., this, sitting analysts next to collectors, collectors next to collection managers, next to engineers, mission support experts, all in close contact with a full away of collections capability. this operating model reflects the success we experience on
the battlefields in afghanistan and yirke. it best suits our future challenges because it empowers leaders to effectively manage the entire intelligence cycle from end to end, maximizing efficiency and effectiveness. this creates a cohesive collaborative operating model hat can truly deliver decision advantage. one such example is our terrorism center, our function focus center. dctc, as it's called, works with our forward deployed military forces. especially the special operation forces. our dctc integrates critical defense analysis, target and collection to enable warning, operational decisions, precise action within the war fighters, environment against terrorists and their networks. we maintain a broad set of capabilities that aid personnel
recovery, exploit captured materials and build identity intelligence. we've also integrated our foreign partners because in today's complex security environment we cannot understand the world without them. when it comes to our partners and other key international partners, it is unlikely that we'll go to war again without them. we will be in combat as a coalition. so why shouldn't we fight and integrate as a coalition today? almost two years ago in march of 2014, we stood up our center, tasked with integrated d.i.a. and commonwealth capabilities to the maximum extent possible. the five i center provides warning, collection, analysis, crisis planning, operations and information technology. i'd like to think the d.i.a. son the forefront of international intelligence
integration. the more way we can expand across our agencies the more we can advance effective policies and operations. our goal is to take d.i.a. from a five i enclave to an agency that thinks and act as five i agency. we're also taking unprecedented steps in intelligence sharing beyond the five i community. take, for example, our collaboration with france, our oldest ally. we maintain the close partnership with france, not just recently in the result of the paris attacks, but before in countering terrorism around the world, whether in afghanistan, yirke, syria or north africa. we also maintain many bilateral intelligence sharing and other relationships with other partners throughout the world. partnerships with the majority of muslim countries are vital in gaining a holistic understanding. integration, innovation,
modernization give us an edge given the multitude of challenges we face ahead. in closing, let me go back to the topic at hand and take a moment to share with you -- you'll probably hear this again if you haven't heard this before. on december 2 this past year, in the british house of commons, shadow foreign secretary sir hillary ben spoke of his support in action against da'ish. while he explained that da'ish poses a clear and present threat, what struck me was his description of the enemy. and he said, and i quote, and we are here faced by fascist, not just their calculated brutality but their belief that they're superior in every single -- they're superior to every single one of us in this chamber tonight. and all of the people that we represent. ey hold our belief
intolerance, decency and contempt. they hold our democracy in contempt. what we know about fascists is they need to be defeated. the caliphate must be destroyed. this movement must be defeated this is definitely something to think about, debate and come to a better understanding, especially during the following panel of distinguished experts and states men. thank you for enduring me this afternoon, and i'm prepared, i think, to answer your questions. [applause] sir. norm, how are you? norm used to be one of my instructors at one of the many schools -- the reason i went to lo of schools is because i couldn't learn that quickly so i had to keep going back for me. >> well, you've done very well. lieutenant general stewart: norm. norm: will you give us an assessment of iran as a de facto co-belligerent in this
effort, limitations, the problems that that presents and the challenges that that presents, if you could? lieutenant general stewart: the underlying confront that's running across the middle east the saudi-iran conflict and they are at complete odds in terms of their end state which makes getting after da'ish, particularly in yirke and syria, very difficult. the focus of efforts should be on da'ish, yet for the iranians, the focus of effort is the assad regime. so -- i always remind folks that we saw this kind of terrorism that goes back to 1979 with the iranian revolution. so they play a difficult role on the battlefield because they are the one state who continues
to use or advocates state sponsor of terrorism through lebanese hezbollah so they do complicate actions across the region. complicates actions in terms of our partnerships and how we target on the battlefield and they're not terribly helpful. i don't know if that answers your question. i'm trying to not stir up too much trouble with my answer. sir. >> [inaudible] i'm wondering -- lieutenant general stewart: i'm not sure you are at the national press club. >> i'm taking advantage. i'm wondering if there's anything you can share with us about the -- lieutenant general stewart: no. [laughter] >> well, i'm going to ask anyway about the north korean missile launch the other day and what you might be able to tell us that you -- about that
launch and whether or not it successfully put app object or a satellite into orbit? lieutenant general stewart: so i will tell you they conducted a space launch that would look like the characteristics you would have for intercontinental ballistic missile. i think it's fair to say that .he launch achieved its orbit and i think i may stop there. it did achieve its orbit. it did have -- did have a payload and i think i'm probably safer to stop right there. >> [inaudible] about two objects being tracked. can you talk about that? are there two objects being tracked? lieutenant general stewart: i don't know if it would be a good thing of what we track and how we track them. >> that's in the open right now. lieutenant general stewart: the fact that it's in the open doesn't mean i should confirm
it, shouldn't i? confirming something because it's in the open is probably going to get me in trouble. so i'm not going there. nice try, though. >> thank you, sir. lieutenant general stewart: i think i probably told you more than i should have. i'm very careful. sir. thank you for your key note speech. i.s. -- [indiscernible] is in bangladesh and south asia. ur government position is that zero tolerance against extremism. and in fact that it's not present so far of i.s. in bangladesh. we have very effective and meaningful cooperation of our government and the u.s. government in con--
lieutenant general stewart: there are, if i could -- >> so far there are no i.s. elements in bangladesh. thank you. lieutenant general stewart: so their publication offers five things to be an affiliate of da'ish. declaration of allegiance to abu, unity and nominate a leader, develop a strategy to implant islamic law, establish contact with the isil leadership and gain the leadership isil leadership support. whether there is a defining the scope of it, elements within bangladesh are on their way now to meeting all five criteria that da'ish has published in heir own open publication. >> [inaudible] [indiscernible] there is no i.s. presence and the
government has successfully contained the homegrown of militant outreach. so at the present, the country free of any extremist radical islamic group. lieutenant general stewart: i probably wouldn't take them off my list yet. i'll take your word for it but i probably wouldn't take them off the list yet. sir. >> yes. so until this past may, i was a program manager at the darpa, where i ran probably the largest research program in social media research program in the united states, on the order of about $50 million. i was not able to get anybody in the united states government, more or less, interested in using any of this fantastic technology that we developed. and the reality is that da'ish and the chinese and the russians and everybody else in the information space has
basically up to this point gone completely unchallenged. i don't see that changing anytime soon. i wonder if you have any ideas or ways to go forward on this and to change that. lieutenant general stewart: the only idea i would offer is that those adversaries who cannot meet us and confront us and be effective using conventional military capabilities will augment their capabilities by trying to win the warfare in the information space. and so that space must be countered. now, my agency will not do that. think it's important. they're starting to do some things now in a number of other agencies that will counter the narrative and confront da'ish in the information space. i think warfare and information age requires that we find the tools and the approaches and the techniques to counter narratives and present a more
compelling narrative, our narrative to our adversary. and that's as close as i can get to giving you an answer. i agree with you but i probably don't drive this conversation. >> what i would suggest for the record that the tools now exist. it's only a question of having the will to use them. our adversaries are using them spectacularly well and we are not. lieutenant general stewart: and i cannot disagree with you. sir. >> general, thank you very much. counterterrorism writer. you mentioned intelligence -- integration of intelligence information. could you talk a little bit about the intelligence of timely intelligence and attacking isis? for example, there is criticism that the u.s. bombing operations are not vigorous enough because some people claim they're being supercautious. can you discuss the difficulties or describe it in getting good information, also
confirming targeting? general stewart: yeah. finding -- i did an experiment any years ago where we tried to find small fleeting targets in a large desert environment. 29 palms, california. that is particularly difficult because they are not massing. in spite of the images you see, they are not massing their movements. finding targets, though, that gets after critical vulnerabilities, we're starting to pick up the pace on that. i think you may read, if you haven't already, some attacks that we've done on some of their cash flows. we're going after the oil infrastructure. we have a pretty high threshold to protect against civilian casualties. that's -- i'm comfortable with that space because it separates us from other nation states who are not as careful in how they
employ weapon systems. so i think we're seeing an increased effort to understand the systems that make up this protostate and i think you'll see increased precision targeting of those critical vulnerabilities. we are also on the side of limiting our casualties to civilians. [applause] mike: moving on with the rest of our program, just a few hours ago the president of the united states announced a $1.8 billion program to deal with the zika virus which is a relatively innocuous, can be deadly, can cause problems virus that's moving up from south america but hasn't resulted in any widespread casualties or problems in the united states except for fear.
few things cause fear and have the potential to terrorize us than biological events and the use of terror by this technology frightens us all. last year, little before last year, into last year a blue ribbon study panel was empowered to look at bioterrorism and inform washington, d.c., the congress and the president on these threats. we have with us two chairmen of that bioterrorism study panel, they just released the first report from the panel with recommendations on how to deal with one of the most frightening terror scenarios that could ever be brought together. the two chairmen i'm speaking of are two of the most distinguished, bipartisan public officials that washington has seen in the last century. both of them have served on national security issues for many decades and we're privileged to have them in our
country, we're privileged to have them here today to talk us about this and i'd like to first introduce governor ridge and then later senator joe lieberman, co-chairmen of this panel. but let's start with governor ridge, who served as governor for quite a long time and then the first secretary of homeland security and has spent the last couple decades dealing with the issues of terrorism, national security and most recently biodefense. [applause] overnor ridge. governor ridge: thank you, michael, for that very kind introduction. very warm reception. we're glad you're here and thank you for taking the time. i do want to say to you, michael, we -- the blue ribbon study panel is grateful for the institute's strong participation. we relied heavily on professor alexander throughout that year, year and a half. on behalf of all our panel members and all those who participated.
we're grateful and hope we can continue to taint main that relationship as we go forward. we know, ladies and gentlemen, senator lieberman and i were asked to co-chair the panel but one of the preconditions to accepting both the opportunity and the responsibility was we didn't want to write just one more washington report. we insisted that we also, upon the conclusion of the effort and the writing of the report that we may very specific, very specific short and long-term recommendations to the congress of the united states. we felt that strongly about it. so i'm grateful to be here with my friend, senator lieberman, and we look forward both you and i to work with the institute as we take these recommendations and hopefully convince the congress of the united states that -- how serious tuss. i don't know how many of you figured if you showed up today you'd have this great briefing from general stewart about
perhaps the kinetic threat of terrorism and we all know there's a digital threat, as he pointed out. they live in the digital world and in the physical world. but there's another world of concern that we addressed in the panel and that's the world of bioterrorism. it is one of the lesser discussed aspects of the terrorist threat. but after a year of inquiry, not just in washington, d.c., but around the united states, we concluded that the threat is real. it's growing and, frankly, given the nature of the threat, we don't think the country is efficiently prepared for it. in trying to frame this for the body politick and for congress, frankly, whether the threat, the pathogen is thrown at you by mother nature or a terrorist group, the impact and the consequences are the same.
so to a certain extent, it was a duo panel. whether you're dealing with a zika virus or bioterrorism, we're still not adequately prepared regardless of the source of the attack. and mother nature reminds us regularly the global need to combat contagious pathogens, regardless of the origin and the source. nature is forcing us to dealing with many great infectious diseases. we witnessed as ebola ravaged three countries in western africa and crossed continents to reach europe and the united states. ladies and gentlemen, short low after i accepted the opportunity to work with president bush as assistant to the president for homeland security -- this is in 2001 -- i was the recipient of a -- obviously drank from a fire hose -- there were a lot of
briefings and one of them included the pathogens we should be concerned about if they fell in the hands of the terrorists we might have to deal with. this is 2001, early 2002, and one of those pathogens was ebola. you draw your own conclusions. we thought it was serious enough then in 2001 and 2002 whether as a country we had the infrastructure to identify and respond as quickly as we did in 2014 and 2015. so there's been an awareness out there for quite sometime. think about 2003 the sars, began in china, took a while for the global community to become aware of it because it took a while for the authorities in china to let the world health organization known. avian influenza returned to our poultry facilities in the midwest this year. and now we have news about the zika virus. again, i think -- congratulations and it's admirable the administration
has recognized the need, understands the resources that are absolutely essential to deal with it. but hopefully you listened to some of our recommendations and i'll let senator lieberman conclude we can do the q&a, once again, it is reflective, it is reflexive and one of the purposes of the panel, one of the purposes of the commission is to build an infrastructure internally, both from a scientific and technical point of view and a medical infrastructure point of view so that when these things happen you don't necessarily -- you may need emergency appropriations but you don't have to scramble multiple agencies, multiple appointees in order to bring focus on a potential pathogen. i don't think we should forget as well the ever-present danger from pandemic influenza, the se of antibiotic resistant organisms like tuesday besh low
cisand let's not forget about the spread of disease syndrome ike sars and mrsa. meanwhile, the terror threat similarors quietly but it's been insidious as ever before. the aspect of the biothreat, the combination of intent and capability to use biological weapons is pretty difficult to quantify. i think we all understand and agree on that. it's an enormous challenge to collect intelligence on the development of bioweapons. how does our country or any country for that matter know whether someone working with pathogens in a laboratory is working for the benefit of that community and the world or to its detriment? the duo use problem is hard to tackle in the united states labs let alone labs in makeshift facilities in foreign countries. here are some of the open source facts about this threat
which you may be aware of but bears repeating. we know that al qaeda sought to develop biological weapons. they launched a program in afghanistan to develop anthrax into a mass casualty weapon. the u.s. discovered evidence of that unsuccessful or maybe just not fully realized program after our military entered. we know that isil has publicly espoused the value of biological weapons for their ability to cause massive loss of life. and they have certainly expressed their intent to use such weapons. we know, according to the intelligence community and the department of state, that china, iran, north korea, russia and syria all continue to engage in suspicious dual use or biological weapons,
specific activity and we believe are in violation of the biological and toxic weapons convention. we know that caches of incompletely destroyed or buried biological weapons materials can now be accessed again. and then smuggled to other regions for use in today's wars by proxies which include some of today's terrorists. and we know that isil now possesses what it needs to get a biological weapons program going. a larm enough piece of land that can both be controlled and secured, physical infrastructure, like labs and manufacturing facilities, scientific expertise, professional military personnel who would know how best to deploy these weapons. so we believe, as part of the panel's discussion and recommendation, we need to do a better job getting the intelligence community the resources it needs to address
the biological threats properly. frankly, our assessment of the nature of the threat believes that the limited resources are far disproportionate in a negative way with the emphasis we need to pay attention and have the i.c. community pay attention to biological threats. now, let me be very clear about something. even with intelligence on nefarious intent, it takes obviously a very sufficient leap, perhaps, to go from spent to launching a successful attack. a significant amount of knowledge and the institution of some sort of program are necessary for the successful development and execution of a mass casualty attack with a biological weapon. these are fairly large hurdles to jump over and may explain why we have not seen a large-scale biological attack yet. but our study panel and frankly
many of the experts who spoke with us and gave us some divideans, actually, are concerned that -- guidance, actually, are concerned that it becomes democratized and ue big tuss. they -- the hurdles will be lower and easy to jump. it prevents us from having situational awareness of both our enter meese' intent and their capability -- enemies intent and their capabilities. we continue to work with congress on the upcoming authorization bill to realize the kinds of improvements the ation needs in supporting i.c. finally, we're also expressing a concern reflected in the testimony of many groups and individuals that appeared before us. the interface -- involving the interface between the digital world and the digital threat and the biological threat.
experts told us that the united states is not yet well-positioned to address yberthreats that affects the biotechnology sector. we don't know how it would affect the life sciences and we're not sure how pathogens' data are secured. our panel recommended the u.s. government, in partnership clearly with the private sector, move quickly and innovatively to address this growing cybersecurity threat in this sector. we need a national strategy. we be prepared to commit the resources for stored pathogen data and make sure we provide the research community with standards and incentives and support to secure their data as well. although we came up with about 22 recommendations and about 100 very specific action items to help formalize the biodefense enterprise in this
country and to make it function more efficiently and effectively, there was one major, major -- may have been at the proposal at the epicenter of our aspirations in terms of building a national strategy and response to potential threat. let me just say this as an outset. we identified over 50 political appointees who are given some narrow, important but narrow important responsibility in biodefense and you can imagine the number of agencies that has part of their jurisdictional responsibility about defense. you have multiple agencies. perhaps you can understand our most basic recommendation. our foreproposal was that the vice president of the united states should be the focal point for coordinating the many responsibilities in running the congloom ration of people we call within our government the biodefense enterprise. we need someone at the top who
can get the multiple departments -- there are a dozen-plus departments and agencies working together moving simultaneously in the same direction so we can make progress. for us in many instances, as a matter of leadership, organizations and implementation, all things we americans were pretty good at at all these things once we bring a focus to it, put somebody in charge to hold others accountable for the mission and the strategy we proposed. we also made several other recommendations to support the vice president, including members of both the government and the private sector to actually build out a strategy upon which these recommendations would be implementation and execute that strategy, again, in building the infrastructure we think we need to identify -- identify the threat, build the infrastructure internally to -- don't d recover if
want to be breathless about it, whether mother nature throws something at us if we're not prepared at all. i think senator lieberman and i will be pleased to take your questions once he has the opportunity to share his thoughts with you as well. thank you very much. [applause] mike: senator lieberman served 24 years in the u.s. senate but among his many, i think, over 100 awards and declarations was an award from the potomac institute which recognized his leadership in policy and law derived from science, technology and rationalism. he's the epitome of what people say doesn't exist in washington anymore. comity, working across the aisle and getting things done.
it's a privilege to have him today and working -- thank you very much, everyone. here is senator lieberman. senator lieberman: thanks, mike, and ladies and gentlemen. i actually -- the navigator award i got from potomac is one i still have because it's a beautiful piece of woodwork and it has a clock in it. the only thing i got awarded -- and you were kind of enough to repeat the word -- one of the words you used to describe me was rational. that's why i got into political trouble back at home. it's a dangerous thing to be rational. thank you all, thanks to you, mike, and a particular thanks to yonah alexander for the support that the potomac institute gave our bipartisan blue ribbon panel on biothreats to the u.s. we couldn't have done it without you.
this experience -- general gray, thank you, too. most of all my friend and co-chair, secretary and governor tom ridge. my work on this panel proves there is actually life after the u.s. senate. it can be constructive life, and working with tom ridge, i proved it can be more bipartisan than most anything happening on capitol hill today. so a great pleasure to work with tom. points ant to add a few to what governor ridge said. he covered it. i mean, this was about america's state of preparedness to detect, prevent and respond to a biothreat, whether it be from terrorists or from nature. and it's hard to look at the current state of terrorism in the world, particularly with the coming of the islamic
state, which seems to have built its credibility and a sense of popularity in a small radical group because it went beyond the standards of brutality of even al qaeda that preceded it, particularly with the beheadings, that they're not working now as we knew al qaeda was to develop biological weapons to use against us. the world presents every day, including this day with the announcement president obama has made about responding to the zika virus the increasing threat of a naturally occurring the genic biothreat to u.s. and to people all over the world. i just want to talk about a few of the conclusions. this is a program about
international cooperation. most particularly about international cooperation in dealing with terrorism but i do want to seize the moment, as the governor did, and talk about international cooperation with regard to naturally occurring biothreats. one of the things that i had known some about before from my work on homeland security but really learned a lot more about on the panel and also learned a new word, which i'm embarrassed to say, that i didn't know about, zunautic. it means diseases that reach human beings through animals. we learned about that subject and particularly about what i would call the generally prevalent and totally artificial separation between humans, animals and the environment when it comes to
biological threats. in fact, among the biological threats for which the u.s. department of homeland security has issued a material threat determination, all of them, except small pox, are zoonotic. the same is through of emerging infectious diseases. 60% of which enter the human opulation via animals. i saw an article a while ago that started with a question. what is the animal or nonhuman the tedliest effect on the human race? and you can make a lot of guesses maybe today because of zika. guess what it is? it is the mosquito. this study that i saw said the mosquito can be blamed for
-- 000 deaths a year around around the globe. tom ridge talked about avian influenza. it devastated parts of the poultry industry in our own midwest, northwest and california last year. that doubled the price of eggs, cost taxpayers nearly $1 billion, and reminded us that there were no vabbling scenes -- vaccines or treatment available to prevent the spread of the disease or treat the poultry that had it, but what is actually as alarming is how these diseases spread. ambian influenza began in asia -- ambian -- avian influenza began in asia. it was carried by migratory
waterfowl who then in various ways enabled it to spread to poultry. how it got to the united states or to north america and south america are fascinating questions. some of the theories are, believe it or not, the migratory birds, meet in the arctic and sometimes the antarctic and blend and spread the disease and bring it back to where they are. this cries out for international cooperation because while it's true that individual countries can limit the spread of disease by applying public health standards in their immigration policies, that is these temporarily, perhaps permanently stop people from coming in who show signs of the disease, ultimately that's not going to work. ultimately, no matter what your
overall immigration policy is, or if you put up a big wall, to stop immigrants from coming in, it's not going to stop the waterfowl or the mosquitos who are carrying the disease. that really calls on us all to figure out how to cooperate to cut the incidents of these diseases. one of the -- i saw a statement by an expert in this a while ago that predicted that sometime in the next two or three decades there would, in fact, unless we manage to come up with better prevention evices, approaches, and better major medical counter measures that at some point there would be an infectious disease pandemic. it would make as many as a billion people sick. would kill millions of people. and would cost the world over $1 trillion. maybe trillions of dollars. we need international
cooperation to work to prevent that, of course, from ever happening. let me focus quickly and go to two questions on international organizations that the u.s. and a lot of countries represented here are part of. toxin he bilogical and weapons convention, the so-called b.w.c., which has presented a lot of challenge to all of its signatories, given the dual use nature of much of the work done in the life sciences, it is difficult to verify that countries are not doing that work in support of an active bilogical weapons program. as opposed to more benign and constructive activities, including dealing with the threats that i have just described, the naturally occurring infectious diseases. you've got to recognize that is our -- as our panel did the
difficulties inherent in establishing effective verification protocols. america's representatives to the b.w.c. have expressed that clearly, but just because erification is hard does not mean that we can in any sense disengage from this international process. we've got to keep trying to establish a verification protocol that makes sense and enables all nations of the world to differentiate between that used work and -- or being used to develop bilogical weapons. that from our point of view means that the united states must stay at the table, engaged with the rest of the world, to make progress on this problem. the second organization is obviously the world health organization, which has worked
hard to maintain awareness of what i call global disease pathogenic surveillance. in other words, which diseases are where? and to alert the world when serious diseases appear and spread. but w.h.o. does not have the resources or capabilities to do it all. we've got a responsibility, our panel concluded, to lend our resources and expertise in the global disease surveillance indid he ever. i understand the united states -- endeavor. i understand the united states has participated sending c.d.c. personnel to work at w.h.o. headquarters in geneva. donating fund to the global outbreak alert and response network, and sharing a lot of the information that we get from our own disease surveillance efforts. i also know that the obama
administration, fortunately, has placed a high priority on global health security. we've got to maintain an increase -- and increase those efforts in our own self-interest and self-defense. let alone to protect the rest f the world. governor ridge talked about recommendations under action items in our report. we don't have time to even begin to describe those, but it's online. i urge you to go to that panel. i do want to say on a day when president obama, and i thank him, president obama, for announcing the $1.8 billion to take preventive and responsive action to the zika virus, on a day when he's announced that, that the finding of our panel was that the federal government is simply not coordinating the enormous number of efforts in
this area of detection and response to biothreats. therefore -- while i'm grateful for statement the president has made, i'm also concerned about whether this money will be used a well coordinated and most cost-effective way for our government. hat's why, as tom said, we recommended something unusual which is the office of the vice president be put in charge. to give it the power and clout of the white house and also to be able to coordinate what's going on. bottom line, bioterrorism, naturally occurring infectious diseases, are a clear and present danger in our time. that is growing. and we concluded that our response to that threat is not growing as fast.
we need to pick up the pace and to go to the topic of today we will do it best if the nations of the world are working together to meet this challenge, which is to all of our citizens. thank you very much. [applause] mike: some questions for governor ridge and senator lieberman? >> nature of diseases, there's been incredible progress in the ability to analyze massive quantities of data that would be necessary in order to detect early naturally occurring diseases as well as people trying to create bad things, and this type of data would include things like social
media data, hipaa protected data, it includes financial transactions of all sorts, so where there has not been any significant progress as far as i could tell, isn't gaining access to that kind of data. so my question to you is, -- have you guys done anything or looked at anything to provide access to that kind of data to the researchers and the practitioners who need to use it? >> let me try to respond because i thinks think it's germane. first of all there is disparate data all over the united states with regard to zunotic diseases, but unlike personal health and requirements, there's not a national registry of animal health diseases. governor ridge: you might want to start with the basic. we don't have basic information regard to a u with
reporting requirement either from the department of agriculture, department of the interior. one of our recommendations clearly if you're looking to build a one held concept, people, animals, and environment you bert accumulate the data. one, we have to have -- meet that responsibility in the united states as well. secondly, engaging the broader global community to share with us timely and relevant information to the w.t.o. or whenever the mechanism is. we have to be re-engaged in the global community in order to develop both access and credibility that we are interested in being a leader in this space. we have kind of pulled back from that over the past several years. it's not incriminating anybody. we have to be more engaged if we want to gather that data. finally, we made very specific recommendations that the intelligence community is focused on the ken netic threat, digital threat. spend a lot of time and resources, too many people using whatever capabilities we have to determine both intent and capability of other
countries, nation states out there, as well as terrorist organizations to see where they are in the development of a biothreat. your question is germane. it's the heart of several basic recommendations we made to ongress. >> so what about the legal and policy problems. even if the data, you knew where it was, you still can't look at it. it's enormous. senator lieberman: because it's classified? >> it could be hipaa protected. it could be just ordinary social media data, which the united states government is not allowed to look at on a large scale. it could be financial transactions of all sorts. purchases of different types, movements of different kinds of materials. we know where the data is. we know how to get it. we are simply not allowed access to it because of legal and policy problems and that's spreenting us from doing anything really useful. senator lieberman: i must say
we didn't directly focus on that. it's a good question. if you have any answers to it, you should -- i'd welcome that response. i would say this is part of the lack of coordination of the threat unter biological apparatus in our government. i'll give you an example. it's not directly on point but it will tell you what the problem is. we estimated, we found estimates that the government, federal government, is spending $5 billion todd 6 billion a year on -- to $6 billion a year to counter the biological threat of the two kinds we talked about, but we didn't get that from the federal government. we got it from a university group. i think it was university of pittsburgh. the federal government has no unified budget in this area. that's one of the things we have asked the vice president
to do if we can get him authorized to do it. i got to tell you, i build on everything that governor ridge said, maybe this is one -- it's not easy. as you know some information just dessdess it's hard to share, but it's in everybody's interest to make as much of this available as possible. now if you have left you can go on social media that stuff -- that's ridiculous, isn't it? >> it is. or example, i was at a meeting the intelligence community organization, and i was on a panel about open source intelligence. and i made the observation, i said, you know, isis, the russians, chinese, everybody in the world has complete access to public u.s. social media data except the united states government. what's wrong with that picture? senator lieberman: a lot.
ood point. >> united states army, we haven't forgotten governor ridge is one of our veterans from vietnam. didn't realize until i read your bio, you went back in the bid middle of law school and finished. that's unusual. the question i have is about asking if you looked at the genetic aspects of bioterrorism and the prospect that some in fairous actor could manipulate a disease such that our existing vaccines and treatments were ineffective? senator lieberman: it's a real danger, but the nature manipulates the threat regularly. we don't know that the next -- by the end of the avian flu outbreak last year that killed of course people, killed almost 50 million birds in the u.s., chickens most lirks a vaccine was developed.
the experts told us we don't have any confidence that that's going to be adequate to meet the next avian influenza outbreak. this is not simple but we have to figure out a way to coordinate our efforts better. we seem to be somewhat lucky in the sense that some of the work that was done on previous viruses may help us at least expedite the medical counter measures to the zika virus. what you're saying is a real threat. if nature can do it, people can do it, too. governor ridge: one of the major deficiencies we believe exists within the multiple pieces of this infrastructure, and the senator and i are very aware of washington's a siloed-based operation, first thing you need to do is get the silos, other times you need to build new capabilities in
addition to the ones you have, s that there is no permanent it infrastructure to take research capability, immediately to focus on a pathogen that suddenly appears not knowsly in the united states but elsewhere. ther nature can change the genetics. seen that with the pan -- pandemic. mother nature does it all the time. with the democratization of science and more and more information out there about how you can -- since so many of these diseases are zunotic in application, the notion that somehow we will be fairly risk free because nobody's going to get access to that information, that's saying that they secure it by a digital breach, which they could dofment and we are very concerned about the pathogen data and some
universities to make sure they have raised their level of cybersecurities, we don't have a infrastructure. we have no capability internally to devote resources and intellectual capital to finding an antidote, counter measure. again, one of the recommendations we make, we suspect even if we could get the vice president to accept that responsibility, build out a strategy, that would be a substantial improvement. right now it's transactional, ad hoc. i thank the president, $1.8 billion, where's it going? who is going to coordinate it? they'll be responding to the threat rather than having a permanent infrastructure that says ok, we haven't seen it before, but there's enough information out there, how do we identify the counter measure? do we have a surge manufacturing capability to deal with it? we don't have that. we are going to need that in the future. senator lieberman: we spent a fair amount of time on this, which is -- there have been efforts, barta and other
programs, that have been established that have aimed at creating public-private partnerships, thrick with the pharmaceutical industry, but with -- particularly with the pharmaceutical industry, but the academic community, to give us the capacity to quickly respond, ideally to be ready before there is an outbreak with a vaccine or a treatment. some good work has been done under barta, but i worry -- i know that the naturally occurring infectious diseases are -- they are ahead of us. we are not ahead of them. of course i worry that the terrorists are as well. it's not easy to draw the the -- le capability of for instance, the pharmaceutical industry into this, without incentives and subsidies. there's not a given market for
a vaccine they developed because we all hope and pray that an outbreak doesn't occur. we got to find better ways. we made some recommendations in our report about how to do that. the ideal is that we would be ready, in a sense, on the shelf when one of the naturally occurring diseases, or god forbid, a terrorist attack occurred, to be able to respond nd stop it and treat people. >> hi, ron taylor. for senator ridge, i have the honor of working with you in the early days when you were in the white house and when you became secretary, not senator, secretary of homeland security. that was my honor there. for senator lieberman, i always enjoyed our collaboration because i worked in science and technology at d.h.s. i enjoyed our collaboration.
collaboration with your staff. and i got to understand your rationale totally through the many questions that came my way, either formally, informally, written, unwritten. wow, what a thrill to get to sk you a question. it's his question. senator lieberman: usually when this happens on the senate floor, one of the colleagues would say, my colleague from connecticut, really one of the finest people i have served with, and i so admire his position on many issues. but -- on this issue -- >> anyway. the question really is for both of you. you both have touched on it. i have gone on, i work now internationally. i'm with george washington university cyberand homeland security, senior fellow there. i stay in the business and stay alert to the problems that you-all have discussed. for me, the issue is about
safety, security, and prosperity. ensuring that for the nation. i was once a director of a study that was called making the nation safer. the role of science and technology encountering terrorism. i very much appreciate, senator lieberman, the comments about the science base, because a lot of the solutions and a lot of the problems are mixed up together in what scientists do. so we have to keep track of that, and they have to participate. really yet i have, and i think that the solution is, what is the role of the private sector? you can throw academic in there if you want, but it really is the private sector. i have heard you talk about the strategy with the government. and i have heard you talk about incentives. i'd like to hear a little bit more about that because i think the strategy with the government, maybe it's too slow. the threats are too fast across not just biobut other,
particularly when you mix in information technology with bio. how do we get the private sector to stand up for its -- to stand up for any responsibility it has and sharing some of this information that it owns that can be of use? when we need information we go to the private sector often and opposed om people as to the federal government. senator lieberman: let me start, and i -- we are lacking in this. we are living in an age of miraculous progress in so many eas of human life based on information technology, the advance in the bylogical -- biological sciences has been extraordinary. we are all living longer on the verage as a result of what
pharmaceutical industry. and medicine are able to do to help us. but we are not adequately harnessing the -- what's out there for this public purpose. part of it is a lot of the companies that -- the companies that are doing some of the extraordinary work are profit making companies. they are accountable to their shareholders. they are likely to invest more money, obviously, in something that has a mass market than significant -- than something that is going to be on the shelf for a disease, outbreak, pandemic that has not occurred. we looked at different -- barta has tried some incentives. we looked at different incentives. one of them that we looked at is, for instance, would give them essentially not exactly a free pass but quick pass-through the f.d.a. in a case where they are dealing with a current threat and they have a response to it.
we have haven't reached the depths how to do this yet, but we have proven our capability as not only a society but a global society to do things that supposed to be impossible not so long ago. so do i think we can come up with medical counter measures that can both prevent through vaccinations and treatment, both biological terrorist attack and naturally occurring infectious disease? i do. but we haven't organized ourselves to make that happen yet. governor ridge: you take a look, get awe copy of the report, there are four or five elements to t we want barta to take a contracting authority to go back to barta. we think that will expedite it. we understand in our -- you have to do more with funding, hospital preppedness.
-- preparedness. we speak broadly about incentives to the private sector. it's pretty difficult to convince any company, anybody in phrma, to take on massive expenditures on their own for a potential market. we want them to build medical counter measures. frankly, we look at the existing counter measures. we know they have search capacity for that. some should be shifted into innovation, some to the private sector to be more innovative rather than cranking out additional counter measures. there are very specific recommendations. we want to streamline the process of contracting. we want to create with the collaboration of the phrmas, talk to them about the kind of incentives they need to take the collaborative investments with the federal government. you're going to have to pay for the counter measures if we preposition around the country?
taxpayers. it's not like you go to your doctor and write out a prescription for a medical counter measure in the event of an emergency. that's all focused in the report. we think particularly if we have someone like the vice president making those very specific recommendations, we would like to think at the end of the day find bipartisan support for encouraging the private sector. we don't have the capability to build counter measures in the federal government. figure out a way to incentivize the private sector to do it. >> thank you very much for both your presentation and for answering the questions. as was noted earlier, the blue ribon panel on bioterrorism will continue on for the next year. mike progress is being made, but there's quite a bit more left to do. hopefully the co-chairman will come back next year and give us an update. hopefully much more will be done by then. with that we need to turn to our international partners, a couple of whom have joined us
today. our effort as been noted by our distinguished panelists, terrorism and all the aspects of terrorism, are a human and international problem not a foreign -- not a domestic problem per se. it's a problem for all of us. the international center for terrorism studies led by professor alexander has been partnered with international academics and organizations and governments for quite some time, and it has been our annual tradition to have some of our partners here to discuss their views and actions on terrorism over this past year. i'd like to now turn the forum over to professor alexander who will introduce our two distinguished speakers today from jordan and sri lanka. professor. professor alexander: thank you very much, mike. as you indicated clearly the work of the academic community
annot be conducted without international cooperation. fortunately for decades we had the opportunity to work with international organizations like the united nations, the european union, and specific countries as you mentioned. i'd like specifically to recall the many contributions in this particular field in terms of identifying terrorists, what are the root causes, what is the outlook for modus operandi, both on the conventional and finally what's going to -- strategist can be developed. i would like to recognize and acknowledge specifically the role of nato and nato centers
of excellence. for example, in turkey, in an cora and the partnership for -- ankara and the partnership for peace, as well as specific countries such as jordan. and again the contribution of jordan well-known in terms of advancing the cause of peace and stability in the middle east. the peace treaty with israel, for example. and also the role of king abdullah who, after 9/11, we hould not forget that he mentioned this people, those erpetrators of 9/11, completely against the wishes, the thinking, the principles of the arabs in the muslim countries.
with this introduction, i would ke to invite our next smoker -- speaker. you have his bio right here in terms of his academic role. it's a very long list of academic achievements. in the field of technology, for example. mechanical engineering. he was educated in the united states and the u.k. and major general engineer, i would say dr. omar will make some presentation and answer a few questions. >> thank you very much.
i would like to say a few words efore i begin my presentation. i'm very, very honored, honestly, very, very honored to be speaking in such distinguished organization, as well as alongside with this distinguished panel. i would like to thank the audience for bearing with me for the next 10, 15 minutes. if i carry on, please stop me. ldi: this is the history of our irea. the home of the three great religious, plus, of course, civilizations that have existed for thousands of years. and those religions have always complemented each other.
judaism, christianity, and islam. started along like that. and whatever that came out from that area, has always been the oduct of either that culture or the integration of these religions. n the so many centuries ago, the -- anything that happened in that area that was related to those religions, it's always been a fact, very well-known fact, that people have actually used that. but the fact is that these religions, they complement each other. they talk about same values. exactly the same values. none of these religions, they will say, will harm somebody. none of them. not islam, not judaism, not christianity.
in fact, in the last maybe 100 years, 70 to 100 years, it was elaborated more and more on these own religion that has become what i do, it's because i'm a muslim or because i'm so and so. so i think that in the last maybe 30 or 40 years we have discovered that certain groups from all over the world, not just from our area, from all over the world, that views islam to dwell on all that is jihad, that is this, that is that. when we know very, very well, because muslims like his message stay abdullah said, when i grew up, i group in a community, wherefore we see each other. the jewish people like the
muslims, we always start with salam, which is the same in both religions. which means that fairs of all, before we start, before we see anybody, you wish them peace. these organizations they forgot that. and they have used islam in -- or to give certain achievements, and most of it was, of course, against islam. , they have 20 years used that and we knew that al qaeda were a terrorist organization. purely terrorist organization. people started to know that through the -- the way that they finance themselves.
the way that they got themselves or had the resources drawn from certain things, lots of people in our area, they knew that it was against islam, d then al qaeda, as they started, they started to surface. the people started to know it is-t has absolutely nothing to do with religion. now if i talk, the last thing i would like to talk about da'ish ence ould like to call it lenscy when she said isis, iraq, and syria, islamic state, or islamic state in syria and iraq, it's not islam. it's not islamic, and it's not a state. which is true. it is true that it isn't a state. and it isn't islamic at all. if we talk about da'ish, what i
would like here, don't want to repeat what the general said, thank him for his keynote speech, i would not like to repeat what he said, i would like to complement. da'ish have always, always managed to go to things and think of two things and elaborate on two things. the physical endit of da'ish and ideology. the physical entity, which we know from jordan and from our intelligence, with the help of the several organizations, that there always, always have support from somewhere. they cannot exist on just what we have. they must have logistic hes. i did my ph.d. in logistics. they must have had some very, very powerful and strong and very, very deep logistic support from somewhere. and the problem is that they still do.
so that is something to do with their physicality with whatever they are doing at the moment. the most important issue for us , whether it is here in the united states or in our area, is the ideology that they are using. the ideology that they are implementing in order to radicalize people. the guy in california, i can't with e that such a person nice wife, nice home, nice job, and he does something like that. when the bombings in london in 2005, i was there. i was stationed at the embassy of jordan in london, the four people that -- the perpetrators, criminals, whatever we want to call them, you can call them anything, these guys, they were very nice people, very good people. so the problem is how do we go from here?
how do we look at ideology and look at it from the point of view where how can we counter that ideology? communication is very, very opened for everybody. social media is very open for everybody. the -- in europe you can get into your car from glass cao and you end up in berlin or whatever. with nobody asking you whether you go or coming from. communication as well as transportation, social media, and the vulnerability of the muslims that we in our area thinking that, you know, they are jihaddies, this, that. there is no such thing. we all started to realize that these guys, they are actually implementing their policies and their strategies on how vulnerable we are when it comes to ideology. the last thing i would like to
say is that in jordan we have suffered so many conflicts in our area. he problem is that we had no interest in any of these conflicts. i i talk about now -- if talk about development, social he development, scientific development, any kind of development, we have always talked about, we have always studied whether here in the states or america or wherever, you always have short-term and long-term plans. in jordan we have never been able to have a long plan development. i'll tell you why. in 1916 there was a condition flict. in 1926 there was a conflict. 1936, 46, 56, 67, 73, 91, 2003,
2011. each and every 10 years period we always had to come up against something that was actually thrown at us. now we have 1.5 million syrians. everybody talks about syrians. we have 1.5 million syrians that is about twice, according to -- could be as much as three imes as europe had in the last three or four years. we have iraqis, we have egyptians, we have yemen is, -- yemenis, we started in 1948 with 200 million. 1967 we blk five million or six million. now we are about 10 million
people. education, health care, economy. everything. housing, when i went to buy my it was about 982, 21,000 j.d.s which is about $25,000 dollars. my son last year, he bought his apartment for $130,000. j.d.s. and all of that was implemented with jordanian. the king last week said in london that 25% of our budget was to refugees. 25%. imagine that. that is a lot. i would like to finish with saying that we have had a wonderful relationship. magnificent relationship with both the government of the united states as well as the people of the united states, and we still having a wonderful
let's say period where we are working with each other. we are trying to implement peace over there. we have a wonderful relationship with our neighbors. and excellent relationship with our neighbors. and hopefully in the very near future we would like to think that that region will have a peaceful time where our children and grandchildren live in peace like they live here in the states, like they live in europe. thank you very much. [applause] >> how would you say the u.s. could help jordan became an even more effective partner in the war against terrorism? what could the u.s. do that it is not doing to help jordan be more effective?
if you had a wish list. maj, gen, al khaldi: first of all, as a soldier, i would like to think that the united states has done its share towards jordan tremendously in the last 50 years we have done a lot together. and we have always, always experienced that support from the united states. but to answer your question, we know that terrorism is our common enemy. can't now , if i you would be -- count now you would be amazed of the syrians, the russians, the saudis, iranians, the americans, the jordanians, the israelis, everybody think that da'ish is bad. to try to e we doing get rid of da'ish? this is something that we have always, always talked to our
neighbors, talked to the people that have always supported us. the united states in particular, what we would like, the united states to do now, is to be and to stand as they stood before against tyrants, against dictators, and hopefully jordan will benefit from that because we have always, always thought that peace is the only way for social development and economic development and eventually providing goodness for our children and grandchildren and our generations to come. >> thank you very much, major. in washington and am very pleased to be here today as a newcomer. major, i'm very aware of what
you are saying and everything is clear to me. thank you for clarification. arab say the role of the league in cairo and washington, i would like to answer the question of what is role of the united states to combat the terrorism? i think international coalition is very well-known. most of our countries are joining the international coalition against da'ish and other type of terrorism. o we are all agreed that da'ish or al qaeda has o do with islam and they are very extremist and very barbarian and barbaric attacks affecting us as a muslim, thank you very much. maj, gen, al khaldi: thank you very much for that. when i see something like that, this is very, very nice.
each eafer every single word that was written in here is chosen very, very carefully and very, very nicely. but the first thing that you see there, islamic. are muslims, christians, jewish from such an organization. this organization was collected from criminals. we know that. everybody knows that. they were originally criminal but very clever criminals. they used social media. they used lots of knowledge about communication. employ started to people into their schemes, but they have absolutely nothing to do with islam. are you 100%. -- you are 100%. >> i appreciate your candor. most americans if they pay attention to the relationship we have had with jordan
appreciate the strength of that relationship. and there's so much discussion about the impact of refugees on europe, i'm glad you brought it up. governor ridge: it's a disproportionate impact to one of our strongest allies in the region, and that's jordan. until somebody understands or deals with the instability in syria and elsewhere that generated the refugee problem, we are still going to be dealing with the consequences of instability. that's a separate discussion. i'm very curious as to the kind of support, financial support you are get interesting other countries in the region, the kind of support you are getting from the united nations, the disproportionate burden of refugees, in my judgment, because of the failure of the global community to deal with the crisis in syria and the genocide that's going on in syria, has fallen on the government and the people of jordan. would you lay out for everybody here what the rest of the world
is doing to support your efforts? you didn't cause t the rest of the world has ignored it. what's the world doing to help you? maj, gen, al khaldi: i would really, really like to very, very much thank you for such a statement. i'm not a politician i'm a soldier. normally i speak from my knowledge as a soldier. and to talk about politics and things like that we don't -- i don't. it's very, very valid point that jordan is paying a lot. you are listening to his majesty, you are listening to me. you are listening to lots of people who come here and talk or go to europe and talk, but there are millions of people who are actually affected by this crisis in refugees as well as in security. at the moment jordan is with the help of our allies,
especially the united states, i would like to thank each and every single state that have actually contributed towards our stability, which is now very, very vital, it's very, very important. but the problem is that we are crying out loud that jordan cannot withstand that pressure anymore. jordan is crying for help. it's not just a matter of 300 million or 400 million that is going towards new mission and f-16's or something like that. what we would like is that we would like the people of jordan that have actually expressed themselves when the syrians started to come in, i was on duty and i knew exactly how people felt, lots of people they have actually accommodate the them -- accommodated them into their homes. they did not wait for us -- help from the government or the united nations. what we would like to see is
that our allies from everywhere, not just from the united states, the united states, like i said, i have been a soldier for about 60 years. always a time, we have always, always experienced that magnificent support from the united states. the problem is that we would like the arab league, it's very, very important, the gulf countries, as well as europe to do more. more, not just for the war machine, but as well as for the people of jordan to try to support that conflict, which is -- it's coming out, it's getting out and becoming bigger than the government of jordan. thank you very much. thank you. [applause] professor alexander: thank you very much, general, for your insights.
think issues that you raised and the challenge to jordan now on the human level as well as security. just a footnote i want to mention i think the definition of bankruptcy that we are struggling with economically as well as policymakers for many decades, one of them, as i mentioned, the definition of that you raised about the so-called islamic state, and i think, again, it is really fundamental to say that we cannot attribute terrorism and violence to any particular country, any particular vision, any particular religion. no question about this.
i fully agree with you that we have common ground of islam and judaism and christianity. if we say one life it is as if we save the entire world. the point i'm making is that i think we have to focus on what the so-called islamic state is. and i fully agree it's not islamic, it's not a state. ut they attribute at least the so-called, they declared the caliphate and certainly the muslim world, to provide some guidance. but at any rate this is an sue for some other, i think, seminars or discussions in the future. our et me move on to
families today. i think it is rather very significant to talk about a different kind of support and combating terrorism for many decades and the experience of sri lanka. with great sadness i would like to report to you that a former foreign minister of sri lanka po spoke at our seminar -- who spoke at our seminar right here at the potomac and elsewhere, he was assassinated by the and sacrificed himself on the altar of peace. we see, of course, we know other leaders as well.
we know the story of. as far as sri lanka goes, i think it is important to have some historical perspective. from someone who spent decades as a historian to deal with identity crisis, for example, security and peace issues. the deputy chief of the embassy is uniquely qualified to deal with this with both sri lanka, and canada, for many, many decades. he has a role of both a diplomat and historian and
academic. i asked him to share with us some of his insights related to the history modus operandi for example. as well as how to end insurgency and waves of terrorism in his country. perhaps this would be a lesson for some other nations to ollow. >> thank i very much -- thank you very much, professor alexander. first, may i ask your indulgence to say it is a great privilege and honor for me to be here.
graflte for ly giving me this opportunity to sit on the panel of distinguished zollars w that said i must state that i'm here not as the sri lankan embassy but scholar who has studied the conflict for years. the diplomatic mantle that i'm wearing is very new. i am more comfortable in the academic cloak i have been wearing for nearly four decades. prospect is n, keith to track future prospects fment this perspective, -- from this perspective, terrorism is highly relevant to he discussion today.
carried out an armed struggle for nearly 30 years. it was long considered the most well organized terrorist group in the world. with a sizable suicide squad of sort, in addition to having -- finally, the sri lankan forces were able to militarily efeat the l.t.d. in may, 2009. after seven years we should be able to review there is some amount of terrorism in sri lanka in order to draw lessons to avoid the recurrence of this types of episodes. what other political and strategic messages that the military defeat of l.t.d. sent to the world? can the collapse of l.t.d.
explain in temples military strategy effectiveness? these issues i intend to address. first, i intend to analyze the political anatomy of the l.t.d. then i will address the factors and conditions that contributed o the outcome of the conflict. inally, i will -- pry hairly l.t.d. was a terrorist organization. militaristic, well planned assassinations, remain a key tool and hallmark of the l.t.d. party behavior. the political driving force of he l.t.d. was nationalism. hence without reading the
politics of the l.t.d. it is not possible to analyze its character. ultimate objective of the use of terror was to separate the state for the people in sri lanka. in order to understand this militant face of nationalism that the l.t.d. represented, it is necessary to project it in e singular nationalism since independence. there was a symbiotic relationship here. furthermore, the structure of the post colonial state in sri lanka and the reaction of the state, dissident -- >> we are going to leave the last 10 minutes or so of this discussion so we can take you live to the floor of the u.s. house gaveling back in for legislative work. consideration 12 bills today
under suspension of the rules. including one that designates the 9/11 memorial in new york city as a national memorial. another dealing with mental health and suicide prevention for female veterans. pro tempore house will be in order. the prayer for today will be offered by our chaplain, father conroy. chaplain conroy: let us pray. merciful god, we give you thanks forgiving us another day -- for giving us another day. we ask your special blessing upon the members of this people's house, they face difficult decisions and difficult times, with many forces and interests demanding their attention. enlighten the hearts of those who are faithful and tireless in securing equal justice under the law. fulfill the hopes of those who long for peace and security for their children. guide and protect all elected officials and all who choose to