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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  November 25, 2009 9:00am-12:00pm EST

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major hasan's attack targeted innocent civilians and soldiers regardless of their religious faith. the patriotic soldiers and citizens of all faiths who were injured and killed, not on a foreign battleground but rather on what should have been safe and secure american territory deserve a thorough investigation. with so many questions still swirling around this heinous attack, it is important for our nation to understand what happened so that we may work to prevent future incidents. we owe that to our troops, to their families and communities. and to all the american people. >> thank you very much, senator collins, for that excellent opening statement.
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we'll now go to the witnesses and begin with jack keen, retired advice chief of staff of the army. we're honored to have you here. a decorated american soldier. and particularly relevant experience here which i hope general keane will address. he was at fort bragg right after perhaps when a soldier with white extremist views was involved in the murder of an african-american couple. that experience, i think, informs his view of this incident and, of course, we would welcome his reflections on that and the broader issue of extremism in the military and how we hope the army has handled this situation. we welcome your testimony at this time. >> thank you, mr. chairman. senator lieberman, senator collins, members of the committee, i truly appreciate you inviting me here to testify
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this morning. on a subject of such national importance which directly affects the security of the american people and in this case equally more important our soldiers and their families. how painfully and devastatingly ironic that our soldiers were gunned down at fort hood while preparing to deploy overseas to fight jihadist extremism. as we are rapidly becoming aware, the preliminary report suggests that major hasan himself is a jihadist extremist. as he indicated during the act of shooting our soldiers by crying out the jihadist refrain. it appears likely that major hasan's targets and his radical beliefs are directly related as he chose to kill those who were destined to fight jihadist extremism. we all welcome the investigations that the army, the department of defense, the
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federal bureau of investigation, other agencies of government and this congress are conducting to determine who was major hasan? what were the patterns of his behavior and attitude? what did he know about what appears to be his extremist beliefs? what did we know about what appears to be his extremist beliefs? how did we share that information? and what actions did we take or failed to take as a result? and most definitely, what must we do to prevent such incidents in the future? the department of defense has a long-standing policy of intolerance for organizations, practices, or activities that are discriminatory or extremist in nature. this policy was updated in 1986 as a result of service member participation in front supremacist activities. and again, in 1996 after two army soldiers committed two
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racially motivated murders at fort bragg, north carolina, resulting in the death of two african-americans and prompting a dod review of the 1986 policy. and a subsequent revision in 1996. in fact, the army issued a pamphlet titled extremist activities as a result of that incident. i took command of fort bragg in 18th airborne corps weeks after that event occurred and there was much that we learned that eventually became army policy. first and foremost, we were tolerating racially motivated skinheads who were in our units at fort bragg. when extremism occurs in a unit, there is a natural tendency for soldiers to pull away from it. because it is so disturbing to their beliefs and to the beliefs of the army. as such, it can often polarize a
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unit and directly affect its cohesion, morale and capability to perform at a very high standard. what we found at fort bragg is that our policies were not clear in identifying what extremist behavior was. in this case, tattoos, specific dress, racial rhetoric, nazi symbols, et cetera. as a result, racial extremists were allowed to exist in our units. 21 soldiers were eventually eliminated from the service for exhibiting such behavior. unfortunately, all after the racially motivated murders were committed. two soldiers were tried and convicted for these murders. the army investigation determined that we needed to update our policies and equally important, educate army soldiers
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and leaders on the patterns of behavior and signs and symbols of racially motivated extremism. those policies require soldiers and leaders to identify such behavior and to report it. so that commanders can take appropriate action. commanders options are numerous from counseling, efficiency reporting, ucmj or legal actions, and involuntary separation. our commanders then and now have full authority by army policy to, quote, prohibit military personnel from engaging in or participating in activities that the commander determines that be adversely affect good order and discipline. after we conduct these investigations, we will find that our policies will need revision again to account for
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the specific behavior and attitudes as expressed by radical islamists or jihadist extremists. it should not be an act of moral courage for a soldier to identify a fellow soldier who is displaying extremist behavior. it should be an obligation. and as such, the commanders need specific guidelines as to what jihadist extremist behavior is. and reemphasize how to use the many tools and options they have at their disposal to curb the behavior. to rehabilitate soldiers if possible or to take legal or separation action. because jihadist extremists are potentially linked to terrorist organizations, that directly threaten the security of the united states, it is essential that our government agencies are sharing information about such individuals.
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what happens been in the media these last days about major hasan and his behavior, if determined to be true, is very disturbing. such allegations as justifying suicide bombing on the internet, lecturing fellow soldiers using jihadist rhetoric, warning about adverse events if muslims were not allowed to leave military service, repeatedly seeking counsel from a radical islamic imam with well-known ties to al-qaeda. attempting to convert some of his patients who were suffering from stress disorders to his distorted view of islam and finally, was the fbi sharing with the army what it knew about hasan and aulaqi and was the army sharing what it knew about hasan with the fbi?
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while these patterns are preliminary and will be confirmed by the the investigations that are being conducted, it is very similar to what we experienced at fort bragg in the late '90s where we were wrongfully tolerating extremists in our organization who had displayed a pattern of behavior that put them at odds with the values and character of the army. let me conclude by saying that the incident and major hasan's behavior is not about muslims and their religion who are a part of the fabric of american life, respected and assimilated into every aspect of american society, nor is it about the 10,000 muslims in the military who, quite frankly, are not seen as muslims but as soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines. their contribution, their commitment and their sacrifice
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is not only appreciated, it is honored. this is fundamentally about jihadist extremism. which is at odds with the values of america and its military and threatens the safety and security of the american people. i was in the pentagon on 9/11 and felt up close the horror of this extremism. as the army lost more soldiers and civilians that day than any day in the last eight years of war. i know our soldiers and families at fort hood are stung by this tragedy because their friends and loved ones were killed simply because of who they are and what they stand for. they were committed to defend this nation against the very extremism that killed them. radical islam and jihadist extremism is the most transformational issue i have dealt with in my military
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service and it continues to be so today. in my judgment, it is the most significant threat to the security of the american people that i have faced in my lifetime. we are a society that espouses tolerance and values diversity. and our military reflects those values. but at the same time, we must know what a threat looks like. and we must know what to do about it. thank you. and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you, general keane for that clear, strong, principled for myself stirring statement. i appreciate it very much. we're honored next to have fran townsend with us, former assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism. we're really grateful to have you here to put this case into
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the context of your experience in the field of counterterrorism so please proceed. >> mr. chairman, thank you, ranking member collins, thank you. it's really a privilege to be here for you today. you know, after more than 20 years in the government, most of it as a prosecutor and a justice department lawyer, the one thing, i think, we know for sure things look clearer looking back than looking -- when you're in the heat of battle. so -- i mean, as you well understand, i caution the american people to remember that imperfect knowledge and facts in the heat of the battle and the heat of the investigation often result in less than perfect judgments and less than perfect knowledge. and i applaud the effort of the committee to understand how can we make that knowledge in the heat of the investigation better so that we can ensure better judgments and better action. i can say i conducted many such
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reviews during my time in government, probably the well-known is the katrina lessons learned. what i found is that in the wake of a national tragedy, while we look for single points of failure, the failures tend to be systemic. they are systemic weaknesses and systemic failures and so the importance of your work in identifying those so that we can fix them. when we -- when we look at this particular incident, i as others, i think, without knowing all of the facts come away with many, many questions. i break them down into three distinct areas. first, collection. second, law enforcement. and the jttf investigation. and third, the military. let me start with collection. while we must rely at the moment on public reports, what we
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understand is that there were lawfully intercepted communications in an unrelated terrorism investigation that as a result of that unrelated investigation, the intelligence community identified less than two dozen communications culled from this unrelated investigation that had more than 20,000 communications. i must say to you that's an extraordinary accomplishment on the part of the fbi. and would not have likely occurred prior to september 11. we must acknowledge what that suggests. and that is a stronger, more capable fbi determined to protect us and that is to be commented. -- comended. now, to evaluate that, it is difficult without understanding several things. first, the content of the communications they were looking at. they remained classified in the subject of the ongoing investigation.
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second, when the jttf investigators looked at those communications, what did they look at them against? what information did they have access to at the time that they looked -- evaluated those communications? and then third, once they had that information on the jttf and made a judgment whether we ultimately agree with the judgments that were made there or not, what did they do to share that information with individuals who could have taken action outside of a law enforcement context presumably the united states military. let me start with content. and while i cannot speak to the specific content of major hasan's communications, here's what we do know about aulaqi from the 9/11. aulaqi in late 2000 was an amom in san diego where he was -- at the same mask was the two 9/11 ebay jackers.
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-- 9/11 hijackers. and at the same mosque the same highjackers. and aulaqi phone number is discovered in an apartment as a result of a search that's conducted. the fbi and the counterterrorism community know aulaqi well. he has been the subject of interest and investigation since before and after he left the united states in 2002. he is well-known to the international counterterrorism community and to the government. certainly, the information regarding what we knew about aulaqi as well as these communications were shared on the jttf. certainly, the defense criminal investigative service was a part of that review and participated presumably they looked at major hasan's personnel file. of course, the question remains, what was in that file? all of the things that general
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keane articulated, were they there? were they considered? frankly, based on the judgment that was made on the jttf, it raises some question whether or not any of that information, negative and derogatory made it into the personnel file that the jtt officials had access to. -- jttf officials had access to. and so the investigators could have had access to it. now once that information was shared among the jttf and they made a judgment, what happened next? what information was shared? i can tell you from my experience in the justice department depending on how that information was collected will dictate what rules apply in terms of information-sharing. there are two sets of rules that apply to senator collins' question, these can be complicated. perhaps unnecessarily so. if the information in those emails or those communications
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were collected pursuant to the foreign intelligence surveillance act, typically, the warrant that permitted that collection would restrict the further dissemination of that information that was collected without the permission of the court. it's not difficult. one can go back to the court, request the information and get permission for sharing. and, in fact, in my experience, i couldn't recall thinking back on this a time when the court didn't grant such permission. the other -- so that's a legal restriction on the sharing. the second set of rules is a memorandum of understanding that the fbi enters into with each agency that participates in the jttf. the essence of those agreements say that information in participation in the jttf are not to be shared in the home agencies without the jttf officials. that approval and that process can be gotten. there's not a reason not to have it.
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i will tell you as i thought about this case, i think what -- as you read the press accounts, the question becomes, did dod ask for that information to be shared? did the dod representative on the jttf ask for that information to be shared back with the army? of course, we need to know the answer to that question. but i will tell you there's something that offends me about suggesting that it was -- the obligation was only on the part of defendant of defense. -- department of defense. certainly any law enforcement investigator felt they didn't have the authority to proceed but another federal agency could, whether it was on personnel or other reasons should have suggested that that information be shared. in the end, why was major hasan -- why was major hasan -- the information about him from his colleagues at walter reed -- excuse me, in the wake of the review, the information and the evaluation of the jttf, when they made that evaluation, did
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they interview major hasan? if they didn't believe him to be a threat, if they believed the communications to be legitimate, then why didn't you go and interview him? if you didn't want to interview him, why didn't you go and interview his colleagues at walter reed where the information that was not in the file might have been discovered? there are three typical responses to those questions. first, the protection of sources and methods. that they wouldn't want to have revealed where they've gotten those communications. i would suggest to the committee there's ways around that concern, to mask the source and method by which you did that collection. second, i worry about a sense of political correctness and i worry in a post-9/11 world because we very much respect and rely on the vast majority of law-abiding muslims and we've done tremendous cultural training inside the federal government and law enforcement agencies that there might have been some sort of self-censoring if you will, a reluctance for
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them to pursue a senior uniformed military member, a doctor who was muslim. lastly, there is the fbi's domestic investigation operational guidelines. they were written in december of 2008. they are updated annually. and it has been suggested that they would not have gone out to interview major hasan or his employers because they would have been discouraged from doing that by the fbi's own guidelines. that, too, needs to be looked at and considered and whether or not that needs to be changed. lastly, when we look at the -- when we look at the military, we must look at this important aspect. as i've suggested, we have to know whether or not there is a method by which the derogatory information made its way into major hasan's personnel file. if it did, who was responsible and accountable for following up on that information? before the intercepts and after
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the intercepts if they had gotten the information? we must ensure that even if the military had gotten the intercepts and the information that would have been required, that they would have the process and the procedures in place to ensure that that not fall through the cracks. they must also have adequate resources and training within the military to be able to address this issue. it's important not simply because you may want to weed out someone who is mentally unfit to be deployed but after all we want to make sure the military has adequate resources to root out within their ranks the potential criminal, spy or terrorist. this is important as senator collins says. it is important that we assure ourselves, we address these issues because it is at the core of our obligation to protect our military service members and their families. we ask much of them. we owe them an honest look. we owe them to redouble our efforts to ensure their safety and their security. it is easy to offer questions
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and opinions when we are unburdened by the facts. and i am not here to second-guess the hard-working public servants who investigated this case but to offer based on my experience how we might improve the system and better protect our men and women in uniform. thank you. >> thanks, ms. townsend. i really appreciate the spirit and the content of your testimony which i think will be both informative and helpful to us as we go forward with the investigation. thanks for bringing your experience to bear. next witness and we thank him for coming down from new york is mitchell silber with the intelligence division of the new york city police department. he's testified before the committee before. about what i would call a seminal report that he co-authored for the nypd which was entitled radicalization and the west, the home grown threat. the nypd has a remarkable
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preventive approach understandably, i suppose, when one considers what happened on 9/11, '01 to the problem -- the threat of terrorism generally including a focus on home grown terrorism so we're very grateful that you've returned to the committee and welcome your testimony at this time. >> thank you. mr. chairman, senator collins, members of the committee, thank you for inviting me as a representative of the new york city police department to testify here today. in october of 2007, as you mentioned, i testified before this committee about the findings of a recent study entitled radicalization of the west a home grown threat. that i co-authored and the nypd published and the radicalization of the west and the threat it posed to the united states. this threat has now materialized in the united states. the past 12 months. during the past 12 months u.s. authorities have uncovered a number of radicalized clusters
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of individuals intent on committing violent jihad within the continental united states as well as abroad. these arrests along with intelligence operations indicate that radicalization to violence is taking place in the united states. approximately one year ago in november of 2008, the department of homeland security and the fbi issued a warning related to an al-qaeda-linked terrorist plot against the long island railroad commuter network. the origins of this plot linked directly to bryant neil, a new yorker who radicalized to violence in and around new york city before traveling to pakistan to seek out an opportunity to participate in violent jihad. in april, 2009, before the joint task force, there was an attack outside a jewish synagogue in riverdale in an attempt to carry out a terrorist attack. these men were radicalized in the united states.
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in july of 2009, seven men were arrested by federal authorities in north carolina. they possessed weapons and 20,000 rounds of ammunition and had plans to attack the marine base at quantico virginia. these men known as the raleigh seven were inspired by al-qaeda and radicalized in the united states. this past september, zazi, age 24, was arrested as part of a al-qaeda conspiracy to attack locations in new york city with hydrogen peroxide-based explosives. zazi who lived in ing queens during his formative years, ages 14 to 23 before departing for pakistan radicalized in the united states. later that same september, a 21-year-old from new york, brooklyn but indicted for a conspiracy to commit murder abroad in support for foreign transcripts. -- terrorists.
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arrested in kosovo he fought to take up arms against perceived enemies of islam. meaning, american troops, potentially in iraq or afghanistan. he was also radicalized in the united states. and there are more. in boston, a man aged 26 a graduate from the massachusetts college of pharmacy was arrested last month. not only did he seek to fight abroad but he was also charged with conspiring to attack civilians at a shopping mall in the u.s. as well as two members of the executive branch of the federal government. he was radicalized in the united states. at least 15 men of somali descent have ral calized over the last few years and of the and have left the united states to fight somalia. they joined a terrorist group associated with al-qaeda based in somalia. our fear is what happens when they return to the united states? australia has already thwarted a
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plot just this year involving individuals who fought against al-shabob and returning. and this past september was plots in lone wolves in both dallas, texas and springfield illinois. those these individuals were not part of any group, much of their radicalization seems u.s.-based. and finally, there were the recent arrests of two chicagoans with direct links to a group that was responsible for the november 2008 mumbai terrorist attack. though these men seemed to be plotting in targets in denmark, once again it appears that these individuals were radicalized in the united states. given the evidence of the past 12-month period one must conclude that radicalization to violence is occurring in the united states. process and radicalization.
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given what seems to be a pattern of individuals radicalizing to al-qaeda inspired violence, the nypd has invested a substantial analytic effort to assess the causes and process that marked the radicalization trajectory of these individuals. among the cases previously mentioned we saw the pattern repeating itself. it is consistent with the model from the 2007 nypd report that suggested four phases. preradicalization, self-identification, indoctrination and jihadization. in driving this process is a combination of the proliferation of al-qaeda ideology, intertwined with real, or perceived political grievances that cite a western war of jihadism and a justification for young men with unremarkable backgrounds to pursue violent extremism. let me describe in greater detail the four phases. phase one, preradicalization.
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preradicalization is the point of origin for individuals before they begin this progression. is their life situation before they were indoctrinated of islam in their ideology. based on their cases individuals who are vulnerable to radicalization tend to be male muslims between the age of 15 to 35 who are local residents and citizens from varied ethnic backgrounds. backgrounds. the vast majority of individuals do not start out as religiously observant or knowledgeable. phase two, but dedication. it is the phase where individuals begin to explore the more literal interpretation of islam, gradually gravitating away from their old identity and beginning to explore ideology. the trigger for the religion is
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a catalyst of crisis. it challenges the individuals >> the trigger is often a catalytic crisis which challenges the individuals previously held beliefs and causes that individual to reconsider the previously held outlooks and world view. phase three, indoctrination. a phase in which individuals intensify his believe, stress ideology, and concludes without question that action is required to support and for the case. that action is violence. indoctrination is the association of accepting a religious political ideology that justifies, legitimizes, and encourages violence against anything unislamic including the west, citizens, its allies, or those whose opinions are contrary to their on extremist agenda. the signatures associated with this phase include becoming an
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active participant in the group, simultaneously becoming increasingly isolated from one's life. gradually the individuals begin to isolate themselves from secular society and become self radicalized and believe the world is divided between enlightened and the unbelievers and infidels. phase four, jihadist or the violent states. the stage in which individuals except there on duty. often individuals will seek travel abroad to participate in the field of jihad, such as afghanistan, pakistan, kashmir, somalia, or iraq only to be redirected back to the west to do something for the cause. frequently group members participate in outdoor activities by rafting, camping, paint ball with the purpose of the vetting, bonding, and training. in addition mental preparation
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occurs. potential targets are chosen. surveillance begins and the group weapon masses with a readily available components. new analysis. much of the 2007 radicalization study remains directly applicable to the last 12 months events additional research has highlighted some new findings. the most important is that the internet has become an even more valuable than you and a driver for radicalization. this finding was also highlighted by a 2008 report this committee produced noting accurately that, and i quote, the use of the internet by al-qaeda and other violent islamist extremist groups has expanded the terrorist threat to our homeland. no longer is the threat from abroad as with 9/11. the threat is now increasingly from within from homegrown terrorists who are inspired by a violent islamic ideology to plan and execute attacks where they live. one of the primary drivers is
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the use of the internet to enlist individuals or groups of individuals to join the cause without ever affiliating with the terrorist organization. in 2007 we discussed the concept of the spiritual sanctuary. an individual who provides religious shelter for violent political extremist. within the last six months we have identified a new catalyst for radicalization. we call this the virtual spiritual sanctuary. although he is not the only one anwar aulaqi though base in yemen is an example of this concept. his previous ties were discussed as well as his ability to translate literature that promotes violence jihad into english has enabled his widespread. not only has aulaqi been a religious authority cited by the convicted explotters who were disrupted in a 2007 plot against fort dixon in jersey, but his aides are also played for all of those who attended a training
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camp held the north of toronto in the winter of 2005. that group plotted to explode 3 tons of ammonium nitrate in toronto in the fall of 2006. key judgment, number one, in recent years u.s. authorities have uncovered significant and increasing numbers of radicalized clusters of individuals intent on committing violent jihad either in the united states or abroad. this confirms that radicalization is taking place in the united states today. number two, it is also noteworthy that in the past year there have been a half-dozen cases of individuals who, instead of traveling abroad to carry out violence, have elected to do it here in the united states. this is substantially different from what we have seen in the past and may reflect an emerging pattern. lastly, number three, the al-qaeda threat to the u.s. homeland is no longer limited to al-qaeda core. rather it is decentralized now
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consists of three primary elements. outside al-qaeda, al-qaeda allies like islamic jihad union and others who have begun to target the west, and most recently the al-qaeda inspired or homeground and has no operational relationship c onsists of individuals who utilize al-qaeda ideology. >> thank you, mr. silber. two quick comments. the testimony that you give a summary of, the various homegrown terrorists plots that have been informed and stopped in the last year reminds us that, though we are in an unconventional war with the islamic extremists who attacked us on 9/11, that war increasingly has come within our
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borders. it started here officially, if you will, even though it was coming at us before 9/11/01. this pattern of homegrown radicalization is a very significant front and one that our law enforcement is obviously dealing with quite effectively since most of these plots, except for the ones that were lone wolves and presumably hasan, most of the others which were groups. the second thing is in the question and answer period i am going to ask you to relate this systematic framework that you have of the phases of radicalization to nidal hasan based on what you know about him from public sources know. our next witness is juan carlos zarate, former deputy assistant to the president's deputy national security adviser for combating terrorism. before that assistant secretary
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of the treasury for terrorist financing. mr. zarate comes to us today as senior adviser of the center for strategic and international studies. thank you for much for being here. >> thank you, senator lieberman. thank you very much for the opportunity to testify today about the horrific attacks that occurred on november 5th, 2009. mr. chairman, i have written testimony that i asked be entered into the record. >> without objection. so ordered. >> thank you. my testimony today addresses some of the implications of the fort hood attacked including the continued terrorist threats to our military in the united states, the challenges of dealing with the lone wolf insider threat, and the increasing problems of radicalization and the threat of violent radical extremism. the event at fort hood was shocking not only for its lethality, but because an attack against our men and women in the military occurred in our own country on a major military base and allegedly by an army officer
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whose job it was to care for the mental well-being of our soldiers. the attack has raised legitimate questions about why such an event happened, whether authorities, both civilian and military, could have prevented such an attack, and the national-security implications of this incident moving forward. unlike any event since 9/11, it has also fueled discussion about the specter of a violent extremist ideology in our midst. i think it is premature, though, to answer any of these questions completely or make final judgments without more information about the event and the alleged perpetrator. there may, indeed, have been a failure to connect the dots or more importantly failure to evaluate completely what the statement. i think it is too early to tell. what makes the fort hood case particularly difficult to assess at this point is that there may have been an ad mixture of motives are factors that play in the alleged perpetrator's mind. what makes it a case that appears to have been harder to
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disrupt is that major hasan allegedly acted alone in a lone wolf faction and may have used medical research to mask his own inner turmoil. unfortunately as mr. silber points out, this event follows in a line of attacks against military personnel in separate incidents including the murder at a military recruitment center in aurora, an act of fratricide at camp liberty in iraq, and another active fratricide in 2003. the event also occurred in the wake of several destructive terrorist plot raising questions about whether we are facing a new wave of terrorism driven in part by self radicalized actors. the fbi in concert with other authorities recently disrupted, as mr. silber mentioned, a series of serious plots and arrested potential terrorists from north carolina to texas and illinois. some of these parts are homegrown while at least two of
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them appeared to have serious international terrorist connections. some of these plots like the foiled attack on quantico, the attempt to shoot down a military transport plane, and the failed attack of fort dix in 2000 were aimed directly at our military here at home. even with all of these events occurring in a short period of time i think we must be careful not to the draw final conclusions about how the fort hood attack fits into these series of incidents and whether there is a recognizable pattern that ties this event to all the others. that said, i think it is important in the first instance to recognize the constant threat to our military from terrorist attacks. from the attacks of the marine barracks in beirut in 1983, the destruction of coburg towers in saudi arabia to the present day attacks, terrorists have purposely targeted u.s. military
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installations abroad. for homegrown or self radicalized individuals the military bases provide the most visible and legitimate targets that help them justify their actions by tying their attacks directed to the perceived attacks on muslims by the u.s. military. attacks on our military, i think, will continue and will grow more likely overtime. u.s. military presence abroad will remain a visible target for enemies. at home violent radicals will see the military as an obvious and legitimate target. it is important then for the military to continue to review and refine its security procedures at all our installations and for all our personnel. the problem in this case, the case of fort hood, though, seems not to have come from the outside, but from within. based on publicly available information it appears likely that the alleged perpetrator acted alone. unlike the classic lone wolf,
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though, the alleged perpetrator in this case used his privilege role as an insider, an officer, and a doctor to attack the military and murder his fellow soldiers. in many ways the lone wolf insider threat is the most challenging and difficult problem for the counter-terrorism and law-enforcement communities. the more a terrorist is interacting and communicating and manifesting intent and capabilities the more likely the plot can be prevented. the u.s. government and foreign partners have uncovered a variety of such cells and networks since 9/11 and prevented numerous attacks. if there is no expression of violent tendencies or plans then it is difficult not only for authorities, but also friends, colleagues, and neighbors to determine that a violent that is looming. law enforcement, in addition, is often limited in its ability to acquire or follow-up without indications of directly suspicious or criminal behavior. the june 1st, 2009, murder at the military recruitment center
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in little rock is a sobering reminder of these limitations. in retrospect the fort hood case could prove to be even more complicated than past events. it may be that we will not see a smoking gun that revealed major hasan's motivation and signaled an intent to resort to violence. like other such violent incidents there will likely be a patchwork of data points and behavioral clues, which in light of the incident and with hindsight as ms. townsend indicates, appeared to point to past of violence. a key question is whether those data points were seen and evaluate it properly. the most troubling of the alleged to data points revealed that it involved suspicious and supposed communication between major hasan and anwar aulaqi. as has been testified to aulaqi is a yemeni cleric with ties to poe 9/11 hijackers and with and in yemen with western
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violent extremists. aulaqi has been and is w ell-known to the u.s. government. though too early to fully evaluate what may have made these communications in the alleged case of major hasan more difficult to diagnose is that the alleged perpetrators own doubts and conflict about serving in the military may have been masked by his own academic and medical research about the mind of muslim soldiers. the threat of an american lone wolf radicalized remotely in the u.s., perhaps via the internet, presents the most difficult problem. the reality is that attacks by such actors are difficult to predict and to prevent. even more so when they are acting from the inside. in light of this attack there has begun a heightened debate about the threat posed by the ideology of a violent islamic extremism. the core narrative of this ideology, that the west is at war with islam and the muslims must unite has widespread appeal.
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this is a simple and straightforward narrative that helps explain world events and local grievances. it is a narrative that is widely believed in many corners of the world and acts as a siren song for troubled individuals in crisis. al-qaeda and their adherents take full advantage of this ideology to lure canon fodder for their cause. al-qaeda's number one and two has physically crafted messages directly aimed at american audiences. there is no case that al-qaeda will reference the fort hood attacked in their propaganda. though this is an ideology that is inherently exclusionary and violent, it is not illegal to believe in or espouse it. many do throughout the world including some people in the united states. given our first amendment protection merely espousing such
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views cannot be illegal. causality, the preaching of such hatred and advocacy is not prosecutable as insight and under u.s. law. there are many radical ideologues like aulaqi. fortunately the u.s. has wisely been immune from the larger social and economic problems of muslim immigration and the problems of radicalization found throughout europe and in parts of asia. much of this can be been treated to the fundamental integration of all immigrants into american society as americans and the common ideals and counter narratives of the american dream. the danger of this ideology in the united states is far more individuals to fall prey to radicalization and for a divide to form within american society. this is why at the american citizens, muslims and non-muslims alike, have the special responsibility not to play into the hands of the
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violent extremists and their ideology. there cannot be a divide in our society. to the credit of our great country and citizens reaction to the fort hood has been measured and civil. muslim americans have a special responsibility in this ideological battle. regardless of the ideology of the motivations of the perpetrator the attack of fort hood is an important moment for muslim americans to stand up directly against this ideology that has proven to be so deadly and destructive. this involves more than just condonation, but an active participation in the debate about how to isolate, to spread it, and ultimately displace the allure of this false ideology especially in the united states. i applaud leaders like be is a director of the muslim public affairs of council has issued a call to fellow muslim americans. he called the fort hood attacks a defining moment for muslim
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americans and concluded the following: we as muslim americans are the answer to this rising phenomenon. we on our own destiny, and it is fundamentally intertwined with our nation's destiny. terrorism will be defeated with our work on the front lines not in the battlefields, but in our mosques and community centers and you dissociations. by standing up and working for change we are acting on the best getting principles of islam and america. indeed, it is our vibrant american muslim communities and leaders who must rise up to face down the ideology that glorifies death and aims to form a division in our society. as a review of this incident unfolds i think it will be critical to ensure that information was shared and evaluated properly, but i also think it will be important to preserve the necessary tools to law-enforcement and intelligence community that will allow them to uncover datapoint related to
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domestic extremist terrorism. in this regard i think the two provisions of the patriot access to sunset this year to include the wiretap provision should be renewed. the provision commonly referred to as the lone wolf provision should also be renewed. these, i think, should be renewed without unnecessary or burdensome requirements. in addition, i think congress and the administration should ensure the revise of attorney general guidelines mentioned by ms. townsend are fully in effect, supported, and implemented. in addition look at modifications were more aggressive use would be more to a low of terrorists and violent extremists. >> mr. zarate, excuse me for
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interrupting. if you can come to a close, i actually went over your statement including the questions that you suggest we race. we have a number of committee members here, i know, that want to get into the question. >> let me conclude with a couple of key questions that they not only build on the questions, but also point to some forward-looking dimensions. obviously the key and core question is whether or not there were any distractions in terms of information sharing both horizontal and vertical that affected the ability to see the collective body of information about major hasan, the suspect. are their existing ties with radical ideologue that should be reviewed again for the spread of radicalization posed? are there common warning signs in the fort hood case and in the 2003 attack that can be used to prevent such future attacks? are there realistic expectations about preventing lone wolf
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attacks? in that regard, are the relevant laws and authorities in place to allow authorities to get in front of such threats? and importantly how much of this prevention goes beyond the federal government, how much of this bears societal response of heightened vigilance without creating an atmosphere of fear, suspicion, and recrimination among neighbors? how do we strike that balance? and finally, should there be a more formal mechanism for enlisting muslim americans to empower them to take on a violent islamic extremist ideology and to allow federal, state, local, and tribal authorities the ability to more actively address community concerns. with that and be happy to answer any questions. >> thanks. our last witness is brian jenkins, senior adviser with the rand corporation. mr. jenkins was involved in the study of terrorism before most people focused on that concept and a long time before we ended up in a war with one group of
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terrorists as we are now. he was last before the committee in january testifying on the mumbai attacks last november. we welcome you back and look forward to your testimony now. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman, senator collins, members of the committee for inviting me to talk to you about this tragic event. this small pin i wear on my lapel was designed by a fireman and given to me in the memory of those who were killed on 9/11. i am wearing it this morning out of respect to those who were killed and wounded at fort hood. when i testified before this same committee last january on the terrorist attacks in the mumbai you may recall that in response to the questions could a mumbai-style attack happened in the united states, i said it could. the difference lies in the scale of events. while the recruiting and
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training of ten suicide attackers was far beyond anything that we had seen in any of the conspiracies un covered thus far sense 9/11 i did point out that we have seen one gunman, pairs of shooters to motivated by political cause or mental illness run amok determined to kill in quantity. therefore an attack carried out by wind or a small number of attackers armed with a readily available weapons, nothing exotic, perhaps causing scores of casualties was certainly not inconceivable. i mention that now because the threat we face is not so much one of organizations penetrating the united states as it is the spread of ideologies and models of behavior. that is what we are talking about here, models of behavior.
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it is noteworthy that the only terrorist attackers to succeed in hiring anyone in the united states in 9/11 were lone gunman now, at a glance major hasan rampage at fort hood looks a lot like what used to be called going postal. a deepening sense of personal grievance culminating in a homicidal rampage directed against co-workers, in this case fellow soldiers. for hasan going jihad reflects the channeling of obvious personality problems into a deadly fanaticism. we must wait, really, for a full inquiry to fully understand hasan's motives, preparations, his objectives, but on the basis of what has been reported in the news media we clearly have a
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troubled man who engaged himself with extremist ideologies via the internet that resonated with and reinforced his own anger leading him at some point to a decision to kill. the markers on his path to the november 5th slayings correspond to many of those laid out in previous studies of radicalization, notably the excellent study by the new york police department. if some of the signposts are missing it is because except for hasan's reported correspondence with aulaqi his journey may have been largely an interior one. i mentioned signposts. were there signposts? clearly there seem to have been some.
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mass killings like the one at fort hood invariably prompt the question, could it have been prevented? i am going to join the other members of the panel here and say that it is premature for me on the basis of what we know now to make that judgment. i do have to say that experience has taught me to be exceptionally cautious in this domain. i know that seen through a rear view mirror a lot of these clues seem tantalizing. obvious if only we had been able to connect the dots. that famous phrase sometimes seduces us into overestimating what is knowable, especially in the realm of human behavior. we are just not very good at predicting human violence. we don't have an x-ray for man's soul. i do, however, think that a very useful line of inquiry separate from the specifics of this case is the issue, exploring the issue of self radicalized
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individuals. much of what we say about radicalization derides from looking at groups. individual terrorists really lie at the edge of our knowledge here. implying, perhaps, the capabilities of both forensic psychology, radicalization theory it would be useful to explore what we should be looking for here and just as importantly what can we reasonably expect to know. senator collins, you mentioned a shortage of psychiatrists in the military. let me offer an aside here. the long duration and the nature of the conflicts we confront today create exceptional challenges to members of our armed forces. the stresses are showing up in the form of breakdowns, suicides, sometimes homicides.
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mark my words, this by no means excuses major hasan's acts. it does suggest, however, that we are going to have to be extraordinarily sensitive to the mindset, morale, the mental well-being of our men and women in uniform upon whom we have placed such a great burden. now let me shift quickly from the major hasan to this event in the context of the current terrorist threat. according to research at rand the number and geographic range of al-qaeda inspired attacks is growing each year since 9/11, although clearly at the same time there has been a decline in quality of these actions. some analysts say that al-qaeda is following a strategy of leaderless resistance as a consequence of the relentless
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pursuit. leaderless resistance envisions an army of autonomous terrorist operatives united in common cause, but not connected organizationally. it is difficult to destroy a leaderless enterprise, but leaderless resistance is ultimately a strategy of weakness. we have greatly reduced al-qaeda's operational capabilities. outside of pakistan and afghanistan its leaders can do little other than exhort others to violence. what leaderless resistance does offer is the opportunity for terrorist leaders to assert ownership of just about every homicidal maniac on the planet. therefore it is not surprising hasan's internet was quick to praise the fort hood slayings as
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another jihad success. since 9/11 authorities have uncovered 30 plots or provide support for terrorist organization. not all of these, even if undiscovered, would have resulted in successful terrorist attacks. but i do remind you that very little separates the ambitions of terrorist wannabes from deadly terrorist assaults. the essential ingredient is intent. that is what we're talking about here. and therefore domestic intelligence collections remain a necessary and the critical component of common security. mr. silber mentioned the plot discovered in 2009. we have had three plots discovered this year plus two actual attacks, the one in arkansas and the one at fort hood. there appears to be no
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inspiration. there is no evidence of organizational connection between these events. there's these are individual responses to jihadist propaganda in the context of our policy decisions that portray what we do as an assault on islam. six of the plots since 9/11 have been directed against american soldiers or military facilities in the united states. again, this reflects jihadist exhortation as well as the plotter's own perception that attacking military targets is more legitimate than attacking civilians. although, i hasten to point out that the majority of the plots were aimed simply at causing mass civilian casualties, especially in public transportation the news. what does this case tell us about the radicalization of muslims in america and here i join you say we have to be
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careful. in all of these 30-some plots we have about 100 individuals that were arrested for terrorism-related crimes. almost all of them recruited locally. it does show that radicalization and recruitment to terrorism is occurring in the united states and is a security concern. it has, however, yielded a very few recruits. indeed, the paucity of significant terrorist attacks since 9/11 suggests not only intelligence and investigative success, but an american muslim community that remains overwhelmingly unsympathetic to jihadist appeal. and so what authorities are going to confront going forward are tiny conspiracies where the actions of individuals, which in a free society are always going to be hard to predict and to prevent. >> thank you very much. excellent background, excellent
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context. you're right, the record shows that the number of muslim americans involved in these plots is quite small. obviously what's unsettling is that a small number of people can do terrible harm, but it is very important to put that small number in context of the larger muslim american community which obviously is not any part of this. we are going to have seven-minute rounds of questions from members of the committee. i want to quickly focus on something in your testimony. after the murders in fort hood information began to came out about major hasan, there was some commentary that this was an unstable person, a person under stress. some extent going from that to a willingness to conclude that this was not a jihadist act or a terrorist attack. and you comment on that in your prepared testimony.
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i just want to draw you out on it. my conclusion from your testimony is that the existence of mental stress or instability does not mean that the act carried out is not a jihadist or terrorist act. is that correct? >> absolutely. these are not mutually exclusive categories. in many cases we have individuals who are terrorists who were attracted to these extremist ideologies because of their own personal difficulties and discontent. terrorism doesn't attract the well-adjusted. >> absolutely. >> and so what often happens in these cases is you do have individuals who are angry at something and reach out toward some ideology that, as i say, resonates with and reinforces
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that and channels them down a path toward a particular action. so if we say, for example, that we find, for example, that there are many aspects of major hasan's personality that are troublesome, that this was a man in some type of personal crisis. >> right. >> that clearly does not exclude his act from being properly labeled an act of terrorism. >> thank you. mr. zarate talked quite correctly about the premium we put on our country on free speech and where one draws the line between free political expressions even if they are extremist and actionable behavior. i think in this case we have to put that, don't we, in the context of what it means to be
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in the united states military. particularly in the concerns ms. townsend expressed, whether some fear of being politically incorrect inhibited earlier action against dr. hasan by those who had heard him express extremists. does a soldier have the right to say anything he wants to say without any consequences? >> absolutely not. free speech is an integral part of the rights of americans, but in the united states military, not too surprising, the mission comes first. to be able to perform that mission you need in a team cohesion, morale, discipline, and good order. anyone who is contributing to breaking that cohesion and that morale and good discipline and order with rhetoric, speech, actions, behavior can be accountable by the chain of command for that speech, for
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that behavior. and therefore be counciled for it, be rehabilitated for it. if there is such an unwillingness to change or such a commitment to those beliefs then be separated for it. all of this short of any criminal behavior. >> right. >> as some of the panel has discussed, a military unit cannot function and perform its mission under considerable stress without the necessary cohesion and morale and good order and discipline that has confidence in each other. and this speech starts to occur, this inflammatory speech that aggravates other members of the team it polarizes the unit. it differentiates people in the unit. it forces them to choose sides. and that is where the commanders and supervisors have to step in and start to address this issue. regardless of people's sensibilities the order and
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discipline and morale of the unit takes priority over those sensibilities. that is the reality of the military and its mission and what the american people are holding us accountable for. >> agreed. what then is the responsibility of an individual soldier who hears a fellow soldier express political views that he deems are extremist. in the case which you were involved, fort bragg, white supremacist views. what we are worried about here is islamic extremist views. what is the responsibility of a soldier to report up the chain of command? >> yes, the members of the team have an obligation to identify and report to the chain of command any of this type of the extremist behavior, rhetoric,
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etc. that was clearly one of the problems we had at fort bragg inside our unit. it was being tolerated by the soldiers and also being tolerated by the immediate chain of command to a certain degree. it is unclear in my mind that we have in the military today and in our army units clear, specific guidelines as to what is jihadist extremist behavior. >> right. >> how do you identify this behavior? how does it manifests itself? i think that is one of the things that this investigation will probably determine, as i said in my remarks. i believe the department of defense will more than likely have to issue some very specific guidelines, as we had to do after the racially-motivated murders and the skinhead extremism we had enormous in the '90's. >> we will definitely pursue that. that may be an area of
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recommendation for us. so the best of your knowledge now existing army policy about extremism is general or is it more focused based on the fort bragg case on white supremist activity? >> the army pamphlet that was published in 2000 is entitled extremist activities as a result driven by the fort bragg incident. >> right. >> deals with racial extremist. >> yeah. >> that is its focus. it is under the general capstone of an army policy that has a much broader focus than that. but i think the pamphlet was designed to give the commanders and the chain of command some specifics in terms of how to deal with this problem given that particular incident. so what we are dealing with here now in my view in dealing with jihadist extremist potentially, preliminary evidence would suggest that. those kind of guidelines in
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terms of defining that and how to deal with that as this specific case and that behavior and that attitude and that rhetoric are not in the hands of our commanders. >> yeah. okay. that is a real -- in our investigation finds that is true, and i suspect it is, that is a real omission in an area for correction particularly in light of the record that the other witnesses have testified to of the way in which jihadist or people actually being self radicalized or radicalized over the internet are being exhorted to attack the american military on basis, not just abroad, but here at home. my time is up. thank you, general. senator collins. >> general, let me pick up where the chairman left off. i have the pamphlet on extremist activities that you just mentioned.
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i commend you for taking strong action after the racially-motivated murder at fort bragg. as i read through this pamphlet, however, the types of conduct prohibited in the policy manual really don't apply in the case of major hasan. would you agree with that? >> i absolutely agree. the pamphlet, as pamphlets are in the hierarchy of information provided to our leaders and their units, normally deals with something that is very specific as a result of a particular action under the umbrella of a general policy. that is what that was designed to do. we do not have anything like that dealing with the hasan incident and his behavior and his attitude and what should be the actions that died -- guide
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leaders and also guide our soldiers. >> that is my conclusion as well. the prohibited activities that are listed in this manual are all geared toward organized activity. they really don't apply to the kind of lone wolf conduct that we saw with major hasan, and i agree with the chairman that this is an area that we need to pursue. ms. townsend, there has also been discussion this morning and previously about major hasan's first amendment right, and i want to pursue this issue with you. both the foreign intelligence surveillance act and the attorney general guidelines prohibit collection based solely, and that is the important word, solely on activities protected by the first amendment. and these restrictions were
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adopted to prevent abuses that occurred in the past where federal intelligence and law-enforcement agencies targeted individuals based solely on there political activity. no one wants to see that. i am concerned however, by reports that our federal law enforcement and counterintelligence agents may have backed off from further inquiry into major hasan's activities based on concerns about his first amendment right. to do the restrictions in the attorney general's guidelines in any way prohibit investigations if there are other reasons to do so? in other words to give you a specific, wouldn't the fact that major hasan had been in repeated
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contact with a radical extremist islamic cleric who was a known associates of al-qaeda terrorists be a reason to pursue an investigation? >> senator collins, i agree with you completely. to the extent that there would have been concerns of infringing on major hasan's either right to free speech for his freedom to practice his religion there were other factors to which you could point beyond that having nothing to do with his religion or a speech that could have caused concern. the repeated, while it's not public the contents of this communications, certainly those communications and now what we are hearing from his other colleagues up at walter reed, any combination of those factors as long as it was not based solely on his exercise of his constitutional freedoms could have formed a basis of further inquiry and investigation by the
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fbi. >> so if we are being told that one reason this was not aggressively pursued was concern said it would violate the restrictions or the attorney general guidelines you would disagree with that decision based on what you know? >> based on what i know now, yes, i would disagree with that. frankly, this is, senator, why i mentioned my concern about political correctness. i think we have to ensure that our investigators feel sufficiently backed up, if you will, to follow the facts wherever they lead them. if the facts lead them to an investigation of a senior member of the uniformed military who happens to be a muslim doctor then that is where they need them. but they have to feel confident that they can pursue the facts wherever they take them against whoever the target may be. >> and the other very important point that you made in your
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testimony is while the members of the jttf are prohibited from sharing information with their home agency without permission of the fbi, not only can they ask permission, but presumably the fbii] could direct a referrl to the army or ted the dcis. is that correct? it goes in both directions. >> that is right. the best way to explain this is by example. imagine if you had an intercept that was not a federal crime. perhaps it was a rape, perhaps it was a child abuse. suppose you had that sort of information. and the local police officer did not say can i share it. presumably the good lord willing somebody paying attention on the jttf would say this needs to be shared with local authorities to by the prosecute a crime or to
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protect a child in my example. so absolutely my view of this is all members of the jttf have an obligation when they see information. n.y.p.d. has a public program called see it say it. if it passes you just because it is not in your jurisdiction it does not relieve you of the fundamental obligation to follow it up. >> thank you, senator collins. we had a case just as you described where a local official was being investigated for corruption and wiretaps picked up the fact that this local official was involved in basically sexual abuse of children. and it went right up to the attorney general at that time to determine whether the investigation -- whether he should be arrested for the sacks of abusing the nation. of course the correct judgment
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was made which was that the corruption investigation was forgotten. as is our custom on this committee we call an order of arrival. the order for the information of my colleagues. senator carper. >> thank you, mr. chairman. to our witnesses, thank you very, very much for joining us today and for the time you have invested in preparing for your testimony and responding to our question. mr. chairman, this testimony has been both eliminating and, i believe, most instructive. i want to return to the testimony that mr. zarate give gave us. near the end of your testimony you quoted, i did not catch it. i tried to find it in your statement who actually said these words. something to the effect, i believe it was a muslim who said to the effect, we, muslim
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americans, are the defining answer. do you remember that? >> that's right, sir. >> just back and read that, please. >> this comment comes from salaam al-mariati. based in southern california. soon after the fort hood attacked he posted on huffington post. as i described it, he called it a defining moment for american muslims which was to in essence own our own destiny and fundamentally deal with terrorism in their midst. what i found incredibly important was, and this goes based on my experience with the treasury and at the nsc having interacted and engaged with muslim american leaders and community members for some time on the issue of terrorism. the realization and the articulation about the importance of the battlefield
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and the front line in the mosques, community centers, and youth associations, i think that is an incredible statement. i think it is an important realization that mesoamerica's have to take ownership of the ership of the ideological battles happening within islam itself and have to find ways of isolating those are rationalizing our youth and getting into the heads of american citizens. >> that one just jumped right off the page. i wanted to ask each of our witnesses to respond. we are a legislative committee. we are not the fbi. we are not the justice department. we are not the judge. we are not the jury. some things we may want to do. i suspect we will want to do most of those things. in terms of what the muslim community and this country, what responsibilities they have, what they can do to help the rest of us trying to make sure this kind of thing doesn't happen again.
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you heard one piece of advice. i just wonder if the other witnesses could respond. >> my reaction to that is certainly one of the encouragement. i essentially praise him for making those remarks. in the larger context of all we are dealing with in terms of the challenge inside the swamp between the radicals and the modernist and the traditionalist, and very much we are all moderates themselves. it is hard to see defeating radical islam itself without the willing cooperation of the moderates to reject it. we are going to kill a lot of these radical islamists over the next coming years just as we have done over the last eight years. as we all know who have been involved up close in this fight, the fact of the matter is that killing them will not defeat
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this movement. the movement will have to be defeated by moderate muslims who reject it. >> thank you. >> very quickly. most of you know, most muslim americans are patriotic law-abiding citizens. very few speak publicly, and i'll explain why, but many corporate quietly with local law enforcement and federal law enforcement. we won't be successful without that continuing, and that is to be commended. oftentimes moderate muslims are reluctant to speak out because the radicals label them unislamic and separate them from the larger muslim world. it is very discouraging to them and frightening and intimidates them from speaking out. we have to understand that is the environment they live in. there are a few who have got the courage to speak publicly. we don't want to discourage them from privately and quietly cooperating with federal and local officials.
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>> thank you. >> you know, i think the question in terms of what are the ways to combat extremism and what role does the muslim community play, we are informed by our discussions with intelligence officials in the u.k., denmark and the netherlands who have had to deal with this problem, a magnitude greater than we have to date in the united states. and clearly their responses right along the same line. at the end of the day it is going to be the members of the muslim community themselves who have to delegitimize this as an ideology and the challenge is for those governments and local entities to find willing interlocutors to help them. >> thank you. >> i would just underscore what ms. townsend said. i think it is important for muslims to speak out publicly, but also there is evidence of a great deal of quiet activity going on within the community.
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i think we are talking about people attempting to insure that their own family members, friends, colleagues do not go down distractive and self-destructive paths. so there is a great deal of pressure in the community against this type of activity. >> the other question i wanted to ask is, i said earlier we are not the fbi. we are not the justice department. we are none of those things. several of you suggested things we should be doing legislatively to reduce the likelihood that this kind of horrific thing will happen again in our country. colud you go back. a couple of you made those. go back and reemphasize those, please. anyone. >> i made this suggestion, senator, of making sure that law-enforcement, intelligence authorities have the relevant legal authorities to be able to investigate domestically. we are talking about in this context and has been described
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by the panel, very difficult problem to ferret out, especially when you're talking about the lone wolf scenario. it becomes incredibly important for authorities to have not only the legal backing in structures and procedures, but also the resources. one of the key questions for the fbi will be to the extent there are additional pressure to try to ferret out these types of events. do they have the resources to cover these types of events and follow up on the kinds of communications. there may be thousands of communications with a figure like anwar aulaqi from the united states. that i think is a critical question moving forward in addition to others i presented. >> senator, the two that i would focus on, one has got to do with this is my pet issue, the information sharing. sometimes we make them too cumbersome. it is just discouraging. it is not that it is not permitted, but the rules become
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so cumbersome that they are discouraging. the community has a real opportunity to look at things like hings like the restrictions and the attorney general's guidelines and the fbi's own internal guidelines. all taken together it may be that just discourages people from doing what they really needed to do. the second piece to that, i really think is the u.s. military -- it does not look like the army got the information that they could have acted within the system. i wouldn't stop there. we have got to look at whether or not the u.s. military if they had done the information has the training tactics, procedures, resources, and business practices to ensure that they identify and deal with these things effectively. >> thank you, again, very, very much. >> thanks, senator carper, could questions. very constructive answers. senator mccain, thank you for being here. you're next. >> thank you. i would like to ask the witnesses, do you believe that the attack on fort hood was an act of terror?
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>> in my mind i do based on the preliminary reports and what major hasan was screaming at the time of the act and his behavior and attitude prior to that. just based on the preliminary report. certainly investigations will confirm what his motivations are. what is in front of us right now, i do. >> senator, when you look at the basic english dictionary definition of terror which is the use of violence to instill fear, it is hard to say this wasn't. what remains to be seen is whether or not this is an individual. i do think it was an act of terror. >> from the new york city police department perspective, this is an ongoing investigation run by other agencies. we will not prejudge their findings.
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>> well, i asked your opinion, not your findings. if you don't want to voice your opinions, not that's fine with me. >> senator, it certainly looks like an act of terror to me. the technical definition under u.s. law, a question of political motivation is going to be central, obviously, to determine whether or not you can legally classify it as such. i think it looks like an act of terror to me. is defined in the quality of the act. the act itself meets the qualities of an act of terror. under a legal definition, in terms of a lark, major -- in therms of the law, major hassan is charged with 13 counts of murder. we have them -- we have him on an ordinary crime. >> let me briefly review what we
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do know. he had communications with an american imam. the fbi had some we know that the fbi had some knowledge of this and reviewed certain communications with the subject that investigation asserted the content of these communications was consistent with research being conducted by anwar aulaqi -- nidal malik hasan. there was allegation of communications, web boasting and suicide bombing. possibly an individual named nidal malik hasan wrote a post on the web site that favorably compared an american soldier jumping on a grenade to save the lives of its fellow soldiers to suicide bombers. extremist activities at walter
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reed, students and faculty by espousing what they perceive to be extremists, most notable is the activity at walter reed as a presentation to fellow students. we love death more than you love like, fighting to establish an islamic state to please got even by force is condoned by islam. general keane, obviously this is speculation, but the military is most sensitive of any organization i know to any allegation or impression of being discriminatory, which is appropriate. do you think that political correctness may have played some role in the fact that these jobs were not connected?
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>> absolutely. also, if actor is nidal malik hasan's position as an officer and a psychiatrist contributed to that because of the special category, someone operating every day treating patients in the military. and individual activity verses a group activity which provides considerably more supervision in squads, cocoons and companies in our units. there is no doubt in my mind that that was operating here but in fairness to many of the people associating with him, based on what preliminary research i have done what the committee is doing, what we will find very clearly is we do not have specific guidelines on dealing with jihad extremism in terms of the obligations of members of the military to identify and report it and what actions to take and what constitutes jihad extremists.
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you take this burden away from people by having those guidelines and when you have those guidelines in place you are clearly saying to the institution that this is important to us. we are not going to tolerate this kind of behavior and we want to identify immediately to try to curb the behavior through counseling and rehabilitation and if necessary separate that individual from the service. >> i talked to military officers who have stated that to now they have had a significant reluctance to pursue what may be these indications because of this political correctness environment. have you heard the same? >> i know it exists, no doubt about it. what i am trying to say is the way to deal with that, it shouldn't have to be an act of
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moral courage on behalf of a soldier to have to report behavior that we should not be tolerated inside a military organization. it should be an obligation. the way to make that organization is provide very specific guidelines to the chain of command as to what the duties are in regards to this issue. that takes this issue off the table because the institution is speaking clearly in terms of what its expectations are and what it will tolerate and what it will not tolerate. >> and perhaps there on the side of caution instead of airing on the side of correctness. dr. townsend? >> i have the same concern you have articulated in the law enforcement community. we invested lots of time and effort in a post 9/11 world to make sure people understand we are going to provide first amendment protection and freedom
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and practice of religion. this was a senior member of the uniformed military, i fear that there was a reluctance to foresee and this is an area of the committee should and ought to investigate and uncover in terms of our law enforcement system, we can't allow them to be reluctant to follow the facts just because they are afraid that they're going to be criticized for not being politically correct. >> if we had a concern like that it would be forwarded up the chain of command and did the department of internal affairs of investigation. >> senator, given my experience in the fbi i don't think there would have been a sense of political correctness with respect to the ethnicity or read it lowered the -- religious beliefs of the individual. this is based on what i know. his status in the military, the fact that he's a military doctor engaged in research with respect to conflict in the minds of
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muslim soldiers, that may have affected the judgment of the fbi in this context much less the question of his ethnicity or beliefs. >> they believe that those kinds of e-mails that they detected were part of research which advocates extreme muslim activity. at least i would find out what research is going on. frankly i have never heard of such research. anyway, mr jenkins, i am skeptical about your answer but go ahead. >> i don't think that religion is the basis of a group being stigmatized but it provides a shield against any legitimate inquiry and therefore should not have inhibited and appropriate inquiry.
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let me underscore a point made by general keane. my military experience in combat units, in a combat unit, actions like this, have been picked up much faster than in the individual professional activity of a psychiatrist even though in military service. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> an important exchange. after the fort hood massacre i received a call from a friend of mine to confirm what you said and to go to your points we have great respect for the diversity of religion but not a cover for bad behavior. this officer said to me that if the army and the rest of the services made clear that
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islamist extremist behavior is not tolerated and you have an obligation to report it right away, you will be doing an enormous favor to the other muslim american soldiers who served under me, because without that, this officer said to me that i worry the non muslim soldiers are going to have hesitation to have what we have to have in combat which is blind trust in one another. that is an important point. so far as we focus on the extremists, we will be doing a favor to everybody else in the military in helping the military cohesion. >> this hearing has been important for a lot of reasons, some of the issues you just articulated are definitely some of them.
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this idea of political correctness, whether that is due to an officer or somebody's particular religion, when you talked about, would refer up the chain of command what effect the chain of command, what if the officer, a high-ranking officer -- of the islamic faith, was having contact with somebody, with one of these radical clerics in yemen, what would be done in the new york city police department? >> no action was taken i would take it to the deputy commissioner level. >> miss townsend, you talk about the joint terrorism task force.
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does that happen with the military today? would they share that information with the military? >> on the joint terrorism task force the defense and criminal investigative service sits on it and my understanding is the information came with shared defense criminal investigative service, but the restrictions would have prevented the d.c. i f agents from sharing it back with the pentagon without permission. where the information came from -- >> that is pretty easy to get. >> they can get it. what this suggests to me is the assessment, they didn't view it as a close call. there was no derogatory information. they saw no reason. over time as more information comes out the committee will be
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in better position to judge whether a that was the right judgment but mechanisms certainly did exist if there was a desire on the part of the defense criminal investigative service to shares that. >> we heard about the silo's 39/11. some of the statements that he allegedly has made, talking about the one where colonel terry lee heard him say that maybe people should strapped bombs on themselves and go to times square in new york, the contacts with the e mom, are those on lows in place when you hear this over here or over here or something else going. it isn't being shared. to those silos still exist? >> i think tremendous progress
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has been made in terms of information sharing. when we see that there was a collection as an indication that we made a lot of progress in that area. we don't have all of the fact yet but all of the information from walter reed and his colleagues, would not be in the personnel system, into the -- the dc i f agent when they have a communication, if there was no derogatory information, they were at a disadvantage and you have to fix that. if there was information inside the military it needed to make its way into a format where it could be shared. >> you have put up some of the most important testimony today as far as fixing this going forward. this should have been in place,
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very simple as what the new york city police department had as far as policies and procedures. what senator lieberman talked about, if these policies and procedures are in place it does take pressure off, pressure, they're obligated to report. if you have somebody who is a muslim, who feels should i report this or not or maybe i will be stigmatized, they have an obligation. that protect them. that was very important. you said something a little bit disturbing. in the general islamic community, when you said that they feel -- say you are a
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moderate muslim out there, they would be stigmatized, set apart. given one zarate about the obligation of the muslim american community, they have an obligation to separate those that are radical. it feels they should come out and condemn. that would seem to me the overarching obligation of the muslim american community, to not let the radicals control their community in such a way that if you feel you are being a loyal american you are actually disloyal to the muslim brotherhood out there. >> you and i don't disagree. >> just reporting the facts. >> i am simply telling you that based on my experience this is a continuing challenge to the law enforcement community to encourage moderate muslims to
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speak out. my only suggestion is we ought to take some heart and some reassurance in the fact that there are many patriotic, law-abiding muslim americans who are not speaking out publicly but they do what they can to stigmatize those with radical extremist believes and bring them to the attention of local and federal law enforcement before they can do harm. we are very grateful. >> all of you have had some excellent testimony today and giving us some direction and probably have given others in the military even some further direction to go as well. we need to renew some of the tools for law enforcement and even make some of the tweaks you have suggested to make that information sharing a little less cumbersome so it will be done a lot more as well. thank you for your testimony today. >> obviously there are lessons related to this particular case for behavior of the employees of
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the department of the army and military and the department of justice. there are broader implications for society, particularly in these cases which are the hardest. people are saying things that seem extreme, respecting first amendment rights that begin to reach out and see if you can stop somebody before they do something very harmful. >> thank you, there is a great deal in the public record about nidal malik hasan that raises concern about the adequacy of our law enforcement. about whether the military acted on the information, not only available to it but was noticed and commented upon, some of nidal malik hasan's department of defense record. the senate armed services
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committee investigation, this will focus on the military. and the connections to the military, our investigation is carried out in a way that is consistent with the essential need to avoid jeopardize in the criminal investigation into a this attack by nidal malik hasan. and the committee here is careful. i want to commend the committee and witnesses who were careful not to say something, to avoid saying anything which would jeopardize his investigation, this criminal investigation and the prosecution of this man, it is essential that we investigate, correct where necessary, hold accountable where it is necessary and prosecute without running into the defense that there has been a prejudgment by people who have either commanded some kind of
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command authority or anyone else who is law enforcement. miss townsend, your testimony is right on point when you talk about that att f being encumbered, apparently being encumbered by some of its procedures. the memorandum of agreement looks like a contract between small print between itself and the department of defense, 16 pages long. it took three month for three people to sign that agreement. the way it was characterized in april before a house committee by the los angeles county sheriff was a local task force officer may not share information with his or her home
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agency without demonstrating the receiving entity's specific need and right. i don't believe you would agree. i am afraid there is too much feeling of restriction as to the reaching out potential in the files. there's also a problem in terms of the j t t f peace as far as the follow-up. either in 2 other agency's records, perhaps with j.t. t f itself with subsequent information coming to its attention, and i wonder if you could quickly tell us whether or
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not you know that a att f if it gets information in year one has the ability when it gets information, connect that to the information it had. >> it is fair to say the possibility exists that they could put that together because there are records and communications involved. is possible. that information is indexed. you have to look on an individual basis. >> a number of witnesses have said that the need for investigations, the fact of these investigations and the need for corrective actions does not impugn and should not impute to contributions of, the loyalty of muslim americans to our
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military and our society. you all have said that as chairman and ranking member and others on this panel, the diversity of our nation's military and our nation as a hole, great strength has been one of our most effective weapons against fanatics of any religion who claim the right to murder those who hold different beliefs. you quoted a statement which is a very significant quote of the muslim leaders in terms of responsibility of the muslim community and i share that. you also point out a counternarrative. there is no more powerful weapon than the promise and reality of the american dream with the opportunity for muslim americans to be integrated into the american society. i want to ask you to comment on
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a statement of reverend pat robertson and recently and publicly asserted the following, that islam is not a religion, but a violent political system bent on the overthrow of the government and world domination. as to whether a statement such as that by a well-known american cleric makes it more difficult for moderate muslims to make the argument as to whether it's that kind of statement really really helps the enemy to radicalize people who would then commit terrorist acts against us. do you have a reaction to that? >> i stand by what i said which is the division of our society
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would be detrimental, the worst manifestation in this ideology. islam is one of the great religions in the world and at the end of the day it will be muslim americans who helped us to defeat this violent brand of it. >> it is important that it be contested and opposed, for a major religious leader in this country to label islam as a whole as a violent political system and on the overthrow of government. it plays right in the hands of the extremists and fanatics, gives them the propaganda tool that they look for. i would like to know whether or not you believe that is the case. >> i don't think it is helpful and it plays into the radical's
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ideology of the west and of the u.s. in particular being at war with islam. >> does anyone want to comment on this statement on the panel? as to whether you believe that statement? >> i think it is an outrageous and irresponsible statements by a religious leader that is full of discrimination, offensive to muslims in general and it no doubt in flames the situation and makes no contribution to what we're trying to achieve, and that is a stable situation. >> anyone else want to comment? >> it is offensive and ignorant, lacks basis in fact and knowledge. there's a small extreme wing not only of islam but extreme wings of other religions which are found to be deeply offensive to the vast majority of the believers of those religions
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just as fundamental extremism, the vast majority of people, muslim or not because the 0 should take great offense of this irresponsible statement and reject it. >> thanks very much for raising the last question. not only was it outrageous but it hurts our efforts to succeed in this conflict. the other senators had to leave. senator collins and i will do one more quick round. i wanted to ask you some hypotheticals. if the new york police department was doing a court ordered surveillance of somebody in this city who was known to be involved in his longest extremist activities, and as
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part of that surveillance, came across a member of the nypd communicating with that individual, let's assume the communications were of a religious nature, not particularly inflammatory but still communicating with an individual known as an extremist, what would the division of the department be? >> the department would look at the nature of the communications. the nature of the communication would give us some insight into the purpose of this interaction. and the interaction between a member of the service and individuals being investigated just across the board would be something of concern and would get senior level of attention in the department.
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>> the simple communication with somebody who had a record of being involved in association with terrorism or terrorists would raise concerns and raise this to a higher level. >> yes. the two issues are the pedigree of the individual and contact as well as content of the information. >> if the content took a more extreme direction, an officer was found communicating on this subject, and was expressing extremist views, perhaps even suggesting the justification for violent actions in pursuit of extremist views, that would raise real alarm. >> the process would be to reach out to our internal affairs
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bureau to move that up the chain of command to the appropriate level of attention. >> it would depend on what that would mean. if you take more aggressive action. >> we need to understand what that means in context. is that an isolated interaction or does it fit into a larger continuing? >> you have developed from your experience four phases of radicalization and to the extent that you are able based on the public record, i want to ask if you apply that framework to what you know about nidal malik hasan. >> when you are dealing with an individual actor, to some degree
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they really are at the margins of the process we have looked at and others have looked at and our study primarily look at groups of individuals. we have looked at the preliminary information and it is suggested that he went through some type of rattle -- radicalization process. the key questions to ask our look at his behavior is and see how those correlate to some of the phases and indicators that we have identified in the model. >> from what you know. i was interested in mideast sanction operating over the internet. as i understand it, someone who talked about -- operate a public web site with quite open expressions of jihad and
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behavior. you don't have to have authorized surveillance of his e-mails and a lot of others to conclude that this guy is at war and urging others to get at war but from what you know based on the communications you have heard, the fbi acknowledges e-mails between nidal malik hasan and a subject of investigation, does that fit into your vision of a virtual spiritual sanctuary? >> based on his pedigree, going back to 9/11, looking at what has been done more recently in terms of his website promoting in english jihadists views, clearly an individual of concern. the next question would be what is the relationship between him
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and another individual. the spiritual center moved somebody down the pathway and that is the key question. what was the relationship between him and other individuals. he moved the person down the path way encouraging him to move from self identification to indoctrination or indoctrination to jihad. that is the key issue. >> it struck me also that the fact -- we have to go into these e-mails, there has been some discretion, as far as nidal malik hasan's communication with the subject of this investigation. the choice of this recipient of e-mail says a lot about whether
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nidal malik hasan was looking, he might have communicated as far as research. even as to personal religious questions. doesn't it say something about him? he may have been looking for spiritual sanctioning of what he is accused ultimately of doing. >> i agree wholeheartedly with that view. who you reach out to for theological questions does give some indications to the information you are looking for. >> a final quick question. whether the u.s. military is doing enough to protect in the context of the jihad leaders,
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military bases and the evidence in the u. s of this string of plots, most of them are not successful but the fort hood success, and do you have any response, is there more that we should be doing to protect the u.s. from terrorist attacks? >> we changed post 9/11 for obvious reasons and i am confident the military goes through continuous reviews to ensure that that protection is where it should be. the fort hood incident is so dramatically different because it comes from within as opposed from without. in that problem lies the issues we discussed here. to deal with that issue, and
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others dealing with forced protection issues associated with the military base. the other thing that goes hand in glove with this is cooperation with law enforcement agencies and intelligence services in terms of stopping these incidents before they take place and that is crucial land that has prevented most of these incidents from taking place, the tremendous work that law enforcement is doing in cooperation with other agencies. we can improve the process has far as francis townsend is suggesting and i will lead to it as well. >> we hope one of the results of our investigation will be a new
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pamphlet on extremist activity that incorporate the lessons of this case. what should the military do when it identifies the soldiers embracing radical extremist views. we know because of the work of the nypd about the four stages of radicalization and is possible that intervention at restage could make a difference and could lead to something short of discharging the individual from the service. in 2007 when you testified before congress about jihad radicalization and recruitment, you talked about the possibility of countermessageing.
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i would like to ask you today if you see opportunities for the army to intervene at stage one of the radicalization process to try to help members of the military get back on track? >> i think it is important when we look at this in the context of military service. to be honest with you, when i was in the military i did not know, more debt eyecare, what the religion was of members of my unit. i dealt with them as individuals. what it said on their dog tags about their preferences for medical burial was something that did not concern me. when an individual, displaying behavior that is inappropriate in the military units or is
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behaving, demonstrating what is contrary to loral or suggests a self-destructive path, that there be an appropriate intervention. there can be that's inappropriate intervention. we mean not be shy about this. there is clearly manifest behavior that is inappropriate, wrong, contrary and so on. in many cases there is intervention. we now about radicalization from those terrorists that have made it all the way through a
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terrorist attack or an arrest. we don't have information about all those who drop out along the way. and there are a lot to do drop out along the way or are council along the way. what will be interesting to know in the case of major nidal malik hasan. he has been suggested to great scrutiny. there are thousands of reporters picking of every statement that he made. that is chronologically flat. one would like to see in order to compare to what we know here, to construct a chronology. when was he communicating with this imam, when was he making these statements and what transactions over time so we can see a trajectory and at that point identify where there might
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have been a useful intervention. >> let me end my comments today by going back to the 9/11 report. it does appear to me that -- is early to say for sure but we did have a failure to share critical information, failure to ask questions, to initiate and investigate or at least an inquiry or interview and the results were tragic, horrible consequences, a terrorist attack. the 9/11 commission reminds us, and the want to read from the
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report. we see examples of information that could be accessed like and distributed information, that would have helped to identify one of the terrorists in january of 2000. but someone had to ask for it. in that case, no one did. or the episodes we described in chapter viii, the information is distributed in a compartmentalized fashion or the information is available but it cannot be shared. what these stories have in common is a system that requires a demonstrated need to know before sharing. that approach assumes it is possible to know in advance who will need to use the information. the point is information must be shared with those that have the ability to understand the full
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context and take action. if you look at nidal malik hasan's presentations, there were two of them that i am aware of, one of which i looked through. there are warning signs and red flags galore. if you look at his contacts with the radical imam without revealing what those e-mails said, just the fact that he was seeking advice and communicating with a known al qaeda associate, when you start to put together all of the pieces of information, it reminds me very much of the side road information that was available throughout the federal government in different agencies prior to the attacks on our country on 9/11. and our challenge is to make sure that we have not allowed
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new silos to build up, that the j t t s, which have had a lot of successes, don't inadvertently become another silo where information cannot be shared without jumping through too many hoops and that is our challenge as we go through the investigation. administrative impediments that may have blocked the sharing of information in this case. to identify in our military whether we need better systems to encourage the reporting as the general put it so well, that it is no longer a moral act of courage as you said earlier,
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rather an obligation to report disturbing information. that is what our investigation is aimed at. i want to thank the chairman for initiating this important investigation. and to express my appreciation to all of you for your fourth right, candid, expert testimony. thank you. >> thank you, it is a pleasure to work with you. we will conduct this investigation in the same thorough and non-partisan way we have everything we have done together on this committee including some investigations and criminal controversial and sensitive, into federal government behavior prior to 9/11 and during hurricane katrina. you stated well what we have accomplished today. i can't think the five of you
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witnesses enough for your testimony. i can't imagine a better way to inform our investigation. you brought your considerable experience and expertise to the table. you have helped us begin to understand how to approach this. you made some specific suggestions not just about questions that pursue our investigation but about the forms to initiate as a result of what we already know about nidal malik hasan and the murders that occurred at fort hood. i can't thank you enough but i would like to take the liberty of keeping in touch with you as the investigation goes on and invite you not to hesitate to initiate to us as you watch this occurring, we will continue the investigation. i hope we can work in an appropriate way, we began with
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the executive branch, the conduct of the investigation. inevitably it will take a less public turn with a lot of interviews in reviewing documents and we will reconvene in public session when and if we think it is appropriate and constructive to do so and ultimately to issue a report and recommendations. you have not only done a great service to the committee but to homeland security. the record will stay open for 15 days for additional statements and questions. the hearing is adjourned.
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[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> you are watching c-span2. here is what is coming a. chris van hall and, chairman of the democratic congressional campaign committee recently sacked for an interview. then a chat with the end of the
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sec enforcement division and later alex katz jell-onos. the national football league announced recently that it would require teams to seek out independent neurologist when evaluating concussion injuries. a shift from recent policy which allows team doctors to make the diagnosis. the announcement came after roger goodell appeared before the judiciary committee. it starts at 9:15 p.m. eastern on our companion network, c-span. the white house this morning announced that president obama will address the nation next tuesday night from west point and announce his decision regarding afghanistan. we will have live coverage on the c-span networks at 8:00 p.m. eastern. thanksgiving day on c-span. at:00 eastern bill clinton is on hand to present steven spielberg
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with his liberty medal from the national constitution center. stanley greenberg and alex ca e castellan castellanos. and terrorism and nuclear weapons. hip-hop artist and actor ludicrous on youth mentoring and howard dean and dick armey and capitalism. thanksgiving day on c-span. >> this thanksgiving holidays, four days of booktv on c-span2 beginning thursday morning. we will feature books and history, public policy and politics. you can see taylor branch on the clinton tapes and hear from two of the little rock nine. what the authors of super fre o freakonomics discuss their new book and contract with allison's anger and a recent miami book festival. from thanksgiving morning right through monday watch booktv on c-span 2. to get the full schedule go to
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booktv.org and follow booktv on twitter at footer.com/booktv. happy thanksgiving. >> senate debate on their $840 billion health care proposal begins next monday at 3:00 eastern. amendments will be considered for of the debate. watch on c-span2 and lots more about health care on line on the health care hub the bridge will hearings, read the bill and more on tbs as well on c-span2/healthcare. >> chris van hollen, chairman of the congressional campaign committee prepared to talk about health care legislation, afghanistan and the 2010 elections. he spoke at a daylong conference presented by bloomberg news at the museum in washington and is interviewed by time magazine editor at large marc halpern. it is half an hour. >> thank you for coming.
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i am a local guy. i grew up in the congressional district before your representative. people should know you -- besides the triple c job, you are a serious member of policy decisions in the caucus as well as someone who had the guts to succeed rahm emanuel. it is nice to do a panel besides him because he doesn't understand there's no seven second delay on live events and you do. we have a nice clean conference. >> dramatically expanded my vocabulary. >> certain words you can use as a noun and adjective in the same sentence. you have a big role in the entire caucus agenda. i want to focus on the two that have been major agenda for the president, healthcare and afghanistan. let's start with health-care. have you and your career ever cast a vote that you were pretty confident were going to hurt your chances of being reelected? >> guest: that is a good
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question. i have cast votes on issues where i probably had no idea exactly what the consequences would be. i can't say i voted for something where i knew for sure it would cost me a whole lot of trouble. i had the benefit of representing the congressional district that i think gives me the freedom to vote away i think best. i keep in close touch with my constituents but for the most part i am fortunate in that the great majority of issues are shared by those -- >> host: you had a large number of federal government employees, a lot of liberals. is it fair to say that in order to pass health care your going to ask a lot of your colleagues who are in covered districts to cast votes where there is not just an unknowable but previous agenda to hurt their chances of being reelected? >> guest: we ask our members to
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listen closely to their constituents and do their best to represent those views. we ask them to vote their community, conscience and their country and for the most part that is what most of our members will do. if you look at the vote we just had, despite that we have a large majority, we have a vote of 220 members in favor of health care reform. that means there were a lot of members of the democratic caucus who took the position that this was a bill that they were hearing a lot about from their constituents and were not prepared for a variety of reasons to support it at least at this point in time. having said that i do believe passing health care reform is not only the right thing to do from a policy perspective bleacher failure to pass a health care reform would damage the democratic prospects in the next election because it would show a failure to deliver. it would be a question, weather
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to get these together or pass a piece of health care reform. the political fortunes of the entire caucus tied together in some sense in getting this thing passed even though for individual members, yes or no with different consequences. >> host: you free number of people and could have pulled back if you needed them if you lost certain other members. perhaps on the left, perhaps on the right, will be covered and the first vote. if there is a conference vote, do you expect the speaker and weeder and others will have to say to members to convince them if you vote this way, you will lose and convince them of what you just said which is in fact we think you are better off even if people are making noise in your district you are better off voting for this bill? how hard will that be?
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>> guest: whether they vote for it or against it, we will do our best to help them because some member may not be entirely with us on that particular issue, more likely than not they will be with us on another issue. they will be more supportive, a variety of votes than someone challenging in these races would be. i am not sure the next vote is going to be harder. there is a general sense that the senate bill, if the senate bill can get through whatever emerges from conference will be something that most of the members of the house who supported the house bill will be able to support on the next round. getting back to what i said, we believe passing this is very important, in delivering on what we believe was a promise and commitment made in the last campaign, this was actively discussed in health care reform,
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we have got to get it passed and we want to leave it to individual members to decide what is best for their districts. >> host: the bill matters and so does the politics and the ability to control the discussions. you tell me the white house efforts and leadership effort in defining for the public -- you have done a good enough job or you have lost so far, defining what passed in the house and the senate as something that will control health-care. you think you have done a good job explaining that? >> we have work to do in that area. people understand that this will expand access to healthcare. we need to do a better job demonstrating how this will reduce costs in terms of individual premiums that people will pay and we think the mechanisms we set up within the exchange with the public option will create greater competition and drive down costs but also at the federal level, where medicare and medicaid, are large
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expenses in the federal government. we did a lot of work on provisions that got very little attention to change the incentive structure within the medicare payment system for greater focus on outcome and quality rather than volume based payments. there are provisions in the bill to change bundling of payments and accountable better care organizations, asking the institute of medicine to revise the payment system. we think there are important measures to drive down costs in the federal budget as well as the premium market. we have not done a good enough job getting the word out on this. >> host: what about people keeping their current health care? keeping their relationship with their doctor? have you done a good enough job on that? >> guest: this is something the president emphasized from the beginning because he wanted to make it clear we were not talking about a radical
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restructuring in the sense that people who like the coverage they have would be in a position of losing it. he has tried to emphasize that point from day one. the congressional budget office analyze the house bill and determined that in 2019 when this bill fully kicks in you will have more people than today on employer based health-insurance. employers are not going to somehow get rid of health insurance. we have to remind people that employers have no requirement to day to provide health coverage. they do as part of a compensation package. no reason to believe people will all of a sudden for their employees off of the current health insurance. >> host: if you could pass anything into law without going through the legislative process would you prefer a single payer system? >> guest: if i was starting from scratch, from the very beginning, i would certainly consider it -- some form of that kind of system with the
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following caveat. one of the things that is defining for our system in a very positive sense is the innovation. the incentives for innovation in terms of developing new pharmaceuticals, new techniques, new treatments, new cures. whatever system we are starting from scratch, you want to make sure there is enough incentive in the system. a lot of incentive in the system to make sure the innovation that i think has been so successful would be part of it. the weakness in our system is some of the great benefits of that innovation, not widely available. we have forty million people with no insurance. it is a hypothetical question. we sort of inherited the system we got. the president made the right decision not to throw this out and start from scratch. we are trying to fill major
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hole. most people would agree if you were a signing the health care system from scratch as opposed -- it wouldn't exactly look like it does today. >> host: you have more of a margin of error in the house than senator reid does in the senate to get it going to get to conference. the leader's bill, we don't know what is going to be in it but the senate finance, what are provisions the senate finance committee passed out that you find objectionable and you would like to see not emerging from the conference report? >> guest: we have a different approach. the senate's means lawrence -- main source was imposing a tax. >> host: is that an acceptable? >> guest: i'm not saying it is unacceptable. it would be a big mistake to draw any absolute lines in the sand. ..
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>> i think having a public option that has to play the rules that we set out. it has to pass the support based on the premiums it takes in.
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any advance from the federal treasury has to be repaid. it is fairy tightly drawn. i believe that competition will be helpful. and i'm not going to draw any linings, but we will have to come up with another mechanism that creates that kind of choice. i haven't heard anything on the senate that does that as well. >> i want to leave health care and go to afghanistan. since there is a lot of people who are -- i suspect. what do you think the odds are that you'll get it bill passed by? >> i'm sure. >> i'm sure we might come back to health care in the q and a. has the white sought your opinion about what the president should do? >> the white has been down. they have been down to meet with the democratic, republican caucus. i was part of that caucus.
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we have not been involved day-to-day basis. but you can be sure that they are taking effort in the congress, and certainly chairman of the armed services committee in both of the house and the senate have made their vote for the white house that has taken into account full range of opinion. but focused, obviously, on trying to make what's best for the united states. >> it's a measure how difficult the problem is. i've never seen an issue where so many members of congress say they don't know enough to have an opinion. those are two members who can have a opinion. do you have a pretty care idea on what you think you can do? >> that was a setup question. let me say there. i agree with the president's view of afghanistan. this is more of a negativity. -- necessity.
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we know that the attacks in 2001 were brought on by a dysfunctional al qaeda. whatever we do, we have to eliminate al qaeda. clearly, the good strategy involves the respect to afghanistan and pakistan. i think we've made progress on pakistani's side. the fight against the pakistan taliban was a u.s. fight, not a pakistani fight. i think the attack -- attachment of pakistan, with our support, they've taken action in the valley. so i think we're moving forward past the major piece of legislation providing assistance to pakistan. >> the afghanistan i think there are a number of different options. i think it would be a mistake for the united states to withdraw. there are some people who are advocating the beginning of a immediate withdraw. i think that would be a big, big
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mistake. in fact, several years ago, i advocated incoming u.s. forces in afghanistan. as, you know, the president hasn't received forces. now whether or not you increase forces above the level is not just the question of troop levels. but you obviously have to clearly analyze the political situation and take into the liability into the karzai government. >> let me stop you. do you have a position on that? there are others who have doubts about that. the vice presidency had real doubts about that. do you have a view on that? >> well, i do have a view on the karzai government. afterall, we have an inconclusive election. nobody knows exactly the winner is. you do have a government that's been ripe with corruption. >> do you suspect he may be involved in corruption?
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>> i have no reason to think that. but clearly u.s. forces are going to be afghanistan, there's a part of a counterinsurgency strategy where you are trying to convince people to repel the taliban in support of the government. you have to have some faith in confidence in the government. and it's very difficult to see whether that is there now. in fact, most of the evidence suggests otherwise. so i think that this is an area where you got to make a determination about what's going on in afghanistan for the civil war between the taliban and motions of the alliance. and other factors. or whether you believe putting more forces on the ground is part of a counterinsurgency strategy to increase security to the point where you will be able to deal with it.
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we have not yet had the benefit of general mcchrystals testimony. we have not heard before congress. i think that we need to have the kind of debate in congress that they had in the white house. >> we'll go to your questions in just a little bit. start thinking about what you'd like to ask the congressman. you are more hawkish than some members of the caucus. some seem very educated, not just in congress, but liberals and internet bloggers about the prospects of putting more troops into afghanistan. you talked to the people in the field that way, including your members. what has been so agitating about the notion of putting more troops? is it their military judgment? they don't like spending money? what is driving that strong sentiment on the left that the president should withdraw and not put in more. >> well, i can't speak for everybody that takes that
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position. there's lots of different reasons given for that. i think the reason that makes sense is people want to make sure that this is going to work. that there's going to be an end to this, a successful conclusion to this. and the burden is certainly on those who seek to increase u.s. forces there, that it will help improve the situation. one the things that secretary gates said early on before the committee of congress was it was important to put an afghan face, in other words, turn over more responsibility to the afghans. certainly, that will be part of the strategy. but having more u.s. forces in some of the major population areas doesn't necessarily translate into putting the afghan face on this war. people have legitimate questions, including myself, as to whether this troop increase will, in fact, accomplish the desired result.
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>> on health care, i think it's pretty fair to say with the gentleman from louisiana, you are not expecting any republican support for whatever comes out of the conference. what about afghanistan? the entire time you've been in congress, it's been polarized city and country. would you expect republicans members, the leadership, hawkish republicans that if the president announced the pretty robust plan to increase troops, would you expect republicans to say thank goodness for the president. i'm with him. i stand with him. or would you expect the normal partisanship to prevail. >> they said they would support the president. a number of the republican leaders have. there's a variety of different views in the republican caucus with respect to additional troops in afghanistan. but certainly, we've heard from people like senator mccain, and there are other republican voices in the house that have expressed support for the president where he to make that
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decision. so i would take them at their word, and say they are going to support him. unless we get further notice. >> okay. we're going to go to questions. i have one more. which is the audience getting to hear, what regulator had to say about bernie madoff? >> no, i just -- look. i'm glad he got caught. i'm glad he's getting the punishment that he deserves. i think there's still a lot of investigation to see if there were others who benefited from what madoff did. i hope we take some lessons away from this in terms of strengthen the fcc as part of the overall effort to make sure we detect these schemes early on and take action. >> go to your questions now. and allow you to see that gentleman there. >> you and your colleagues were able to answer me to the west which is very positive support for the pace, bonds that allow
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us to have properly assessed clean energy bonds out there. so the waxman-markey bill does have that support. do you have any thoughts in terms of generally speaking whether it's prospect in the senate are equally as positive? how do we encourage the public and private and investments in energy efficiency and solar? >> right. i thought that was an important provision we had in the house bill for more financing provisions both for renewable energy, and energy efficiency. i hope we'll be able to preserve those provisions in the senate. there's another provision in the house bill that relates to the increased funds for different kinds of financing. it's one that i worked on a lot. i offered the amount to establish what we call a green bank. the technical word is a clean energy deployment authority. he would allow the creation of a
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financing authority by selling bonds. capitalize the bank, and that would provide for loan guarantees, low-interest rate loans, which in our view is part of the overall package with not only helping get the clean energy and energy efficiency, but also help on the consumer end. as, you know, it contains a number of provisions. for example, the renewable energy or electricity portfolio. it creates a demand. obviously, the cap and trade that puts a price on the most types of fuels. the green bank helps that from a consumer perspective. that's a big provision in the bill. along with the one you mentioned. we're going to fight hard in the senate. >> thank you. >> over here. yes? >> i'm from the american foreign policy council. it's becoming increasingly unlikely that the negotiated settlement with iran is
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possible. we're hearing concerns not only from israel, but from many of the sunny-arab states. if the situation reaches the point where israel decides to strike ivan, what should the u.s. position be? >> that's an easy one. >> yeah. well, i am in a punt on that one. because i think that while we have not exhausted all of the options, i think that there are still an opportunity to persuade potentially the iranians to stop forcing the action of iran short in military force. although i agree with the president that that always remains an option in the arsenal here. but i'm not yet convinced that it's beyond hope to try and
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deter the iranians from their current course. i certainly think the president was right to pursue the course that he articulated in the campaign to, at least, sit down face to face with the iranians. for no other reason that if it means you're showing to your allies that you've exhausted all other efforts and diplomatic opportunities before you take the portion, for example, economic sanctions or any other steps that you may take. at the end of the day, i think it's going to be important to the united states to keep a position together. i think the president's approach maximizing the chances that we will have a continued, united front with respect to our strategy. >> why is the president's public opinion for the iranians so low? >> i think that it probably has
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somewhat to do with the expect ations that were set. clearly the president's statement with respect that are created from israel. even though i think as most people know, the president was articulating what has been u.s. policy for many years. it's just not part of the policy that has emphasized. i think what the president was trying to do in the cairo speech and by lateral communications was to try and move the ball forward. again, the president made it clear during the campaign that he wasn't going to wait to the last year of the administration to try to take on some of the challenges. previous administration, as you know, we have the conference in january of the last year that the president was in office. he appointed george mitchell special envoy, and made it clear
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that he's going to really take on this challenge. only a very difficult -- obviously a very difficult situation now. he's a good negotiating partner on the palestinian side. i think the president said expressly what had been u.s. policy. and obviously, that's as far as he got as far as the israeli pub p lick was the people who were upset. back over here. >> hi, back to bernie madoff, i'm just curious what the congress is thinking, the reaction to enron and all of those rest which of course didn't really do anything good at throwing people in jail.
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what throws people in jail are policeman. so the concern is with bernie, we're going to get a whole nother rat of regular -- regulation, but no one thrown in jail. >> there is an effort to strengthen the fcc and beef up its investigatory power. one the bills the congress has passed, and since the president, was the creation of a commission that is judge way to begin to look at all of the things that may have gone wrong. i'm not talking about the financial system, but in terms of the proud, and similar kinds of schemes. and hopefully, that investigation will come up with some recommendation to take further action. i want to distinguish between the very important effort to dry and beef up the investigatory
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and enforcement capabilities with respect to madoff lessons. there was an awful lot that went wrong that was perfectly legal a year ago, with the financial meltdown, that requires other kinds of action. a lot of what's going on in the hill now in terms of what's happening in the financial services committee, and the chairman, and what's happening in the senate under chris dodd is not response to madoff. it's a response to things like aig, and the fact that we created a system where you had certain institutions that the head of the fed and former secretary treasurer said they were too big to fail. people are fine saying look, you made bad decisions. too bad. you're on your own. but when those failures essentially have a devastating gang on the rest of the economy, -- impact on the rest of the
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economy, that's when the federal government had to step in. we want to pass legislation that helps avoid some of those problems, more transparency, accountability, and when it comes to oversight and regulation, the madoff thing exposed somebody who was criminally responsible. but there are a lot of things that were not criminal. but we want to avoid happening in the future. that's what most of the legislation in the science do. >> the left question. and then we'll wrap up. what is the fewest number of house seats that you could lose. >> that one i'm definitely going to punt on. only expect to say, as you know, we're in a very tough cycle for democrats. the president set the for the israeli. i set the expectations for the our caucus back in january. >> you'll be lucky to keep the
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majority. >> no, let me just dismiss. this is not 1994. i think people who think this is 1994 are totally misleading the current situation. are we in what is going to be a excel tough cycle. no. and i think that if you look at the standard of the republican colleagues in the public mind, you know, and you know the remark that the latest polls show that 20% of the american people self-identify them as republican. that's a 8-point drop since the election when the republican got beat in the congressional and presidential races. i'm not saying that we're -- the democrats should be overconfident. not at all. this is going to be tough. but to such that that the
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republicans are going to run to the rescue, and the american people think they are the answer, at least as we sit here, i think is very wrong too. that's why i don't see the 1994 shaping up. >> mr. chairman, we appreciate you coming to talk with us today. thank you.
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>> thanksgiving day on c-span. at 10 eastern, bill clinton is on hand to present the liberty medal from the national constitution center. and terrorism and nuclear weapons. at five, hip hop artist and actor ludicrous with the youth measuring, and dean howard on the economy and capitalism.
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thanksgiving day on c-span. >> on this vote, the as -- ayes are 60s, the nays are 39. having voted the affirmative, the motion is agreed to. >> with that note, the senate moving its health care bill to the floor. live monday and through december, follow every minute of the debate and how the bill would affect access to medical care, abortion, and medicare, on the only network that the brings you the senate gavel to gavel. robert khuzami is the director for the enforcement and change position. he spoke with peter cook about the fec's effort to monitor and catch fraud. from the sec in washington, this is half an hour. >> i can't thank you you enough. i appreciate it. thank you for the opportunity, rob, come on up to ask a few
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questions of the guest. i'm lucky to have the head enforcement rob khuzami joining me. a little history for mr. khuzami, he went to work on wall street, and general counselor came back to run the enforcement at the sec, a very important time, and of course in the financial crisis what we are still going through. first of all, welcome. thank you for being here. >> thank you for having me. >> there are a lot of range of issues that i'd like to talk about. i want to start first with the reason that some of the folks may have seen you recently. you've been out in front, pretty high profile investigation. the return of insider trading, some folks thought it has gone away. apparently it hasn't. my question to you about these cases. again, we've been working with
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the u.s. attorney office. how is this investigation different from insider trading investigations of the past? because it seams to be different in many respects given the width of how far it's going so far. >> well, and in some respects it's not different. >> in some respects it's not different. the people who want to trade the information. at the same time, i think it is children a couple of republicans. you see in this case a large number of hedge funds involved in the activity. and i think it perhaps represents that's more systemic. someone came across the public information about a merger or
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acquisitions, traded on it, and that was the end of it. you have funds who's business model consistented of attempts to information. i think in some respects, it reflects a more systemic approach to the problem. and therefore, potentially more dangerous. >> is this something you see. is this a business model that you fear? being repeated elsewhere? >> well, look i'm sure that the vast fund of hedge fund operate in a legal matter. there are some that give enforcement types like myself concerns. hedge fund control large volumes of trading that can be leveraged. their technology is sophisticate
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ed, dark pools, trading, they have been traded across markets, fixed income markets, they can have relationship with issuers, they don't necessarily particular newer funds come from the institutions that are used to a compliance culture, having a general council. you combine all of those factors together, and because of that, we're concerned about this activity, and we'll focus our efforts in this area. >> is it safe to say that we're going to see some more rest? >> i'm afraid i can't comment on future activity. >> let me ask you at least this question, then, because, you're the u.s. attorney has been working on the case as well. he said in the most recent press conference, that in essence, ask people to step forward right now
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before someone essentially turns you in. are you seeing a level of cooperation, given the public nature of these cases so far? people coming to you now and providing assistance. >> we are seeing it from the public as a result of this case. we get a large volume to begin with. in the particular space, we are seeing some additional information coming our way. >> those of us covering this story from afar, and those people out in public, i'm sure in wall street. one word really stood out. wiretap. they don't normally associate that with the fcc as much, or certainly these kinds of investigations. does that respect something new and different. should people on wall street be worried? >> they would be worried. look, historically, as a former prosecutor myself, we use a lot of undercover techniques in connection with come of our
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investigation be they informants, setting up front businesses to atrack those who might be blind to engage in this conduct, wiretaps, and also sorts of other investigative techniques. we will continue to use them as best as we can in order to fair it out to this kind of misconduct. >> does any sense, again, i know you don't have -- you can't tell us about additional arrest. but this is an investigation that is just beginning. largely concluded. can you give us a time sense, at least? >> i pass on that. >> all right. well, i had to make any try at least. let me ask you about another case that's been in the news. it involves the sec. this week bear stearns, acquitted on criminal charges about misleading investors about losses at their funds. of course, your reaction to

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