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tv   Public Affairs Events  CSPAN  December 3, 2016 6:00am-8:01am EST

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that will continue to haunt us in all the other factors. i realize that you reassure us that with regard to this program but i am looking for something very concrete to enable us to get that product that the taxpayers are paying for aside from your reassurances that there is something you will do that would have that product that we pay for. >> i will go down the list of mike at the start of the program we will not suffer for the requirements. we will not introduce a new design into production to have the cost goes through the roof we will not put them under contract because
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government owes the responsibility for the cost about that milestone i would be happy to sit down with committee staff to walk through what you need to ensure that you do have confidence that all of the statutory requirements in terms of cost estimate doc acquisition program and documentations is just like a milestone in be will prepare them for you and walk through it with hugh if we need to establish a milestone. i don't hesitate to do that. >> is important to have that very specific items even with the initial testimony that they would cost $200 million and it when you have been asked to justify
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those changes against it will be good to have the specific items to check off if we go forward. >> we will work with the staff going forward. >> if i may, i would say all of these are modifications at least $100 million per ship that cost has not been independent validated but if we're that close to have everything ready for the milestone the muscat's have the milestone. although there are not legal requirements for you to approve the ship but if you tried you will be told he will jeopardize what prices.
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>> i understand. >> this weekend only go by the numbers that we were given. who gave us a $220 million per ship and then with the and no bureaucrat to we know who that was quite. >> it was uniformed leadership at that time. >> i didn't know the uniformed navy was responsible for this kind of acquisition? it thought it was the
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civilian side for? >> i want to thank the chair for his very important focus on the issues with the lcs and also to thank mr. francis for his good insight on how to try to bring back the oversight with the cost overruns. dr. gilmore on the different topic want to ask, right now currently pulling block blood negative in comparison to what to think fed chairman with the work we have done together to make sure there is an dave premature retirement because of its capacity to have close air support for our troops on the ground. so mixing signals with what
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has ben happening with the airforce before this committee that the fact e.f. 35 will not so air support is very important but it was an honor to make scheerer there are positions and we will consider shortly next week to make sure this comparison the test is done before there is any we tire of it. i want to ask where the comparisons -- comparisons of that process and how that will be conducted in a thorough way? / in conjunction for the evaluation force, the three
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of us detailed plan for all testing and a 35 including in particular a comparison. >> i may not change that but i is this a good plan but with the testing to conduct close air support and also to control those airborne missions. it is a rigorous test end of conductive will provide. >> with the message and syndication was with the comparison test canvasback
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to these requirements prevent specifically. >> un. >> and read a and have to convince them but it is there in plain emission. now we will find out if the measure it is up. >> for but my projection is the operational test that would included this comparison will not begin in all likelihood until 2018 or 2019 because the testing will not end until july 2018
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at that point you can get a release of the capability software that enables the aircraft deal with the environment and the all projections are the meat and -- the model be available through 2018 we cannot do testing until that time. >> but it is not ready to engage in combat crack's. >> until it has one that is verified and credited it would not have the capability of those threats of what we're spending to have the deal. >> but with isis in syria as iraq spec correct. >> are they ready to assume that role? unit people argue that it could but i wonder about that argument because the
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capability it has a is air-to-air missiles and bombs with limitations that the states clearly some of that is the evaluations that our consistent with that and then there are other problems with availability that is at best 50 percent bottoming out at 20 europe 30 so why with the commander said in an aircraft with no bombs are limited availability to fight isis'? >> and the cost is roughly?
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>> i hesitate to give the number it is well over the initial cost between 80 and $100 million. . .
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at the inventory due to other components, so this is important getting the timing of the comparison test. >> if i am correct we wouldn't start training for the operational test until 2018 that takes about six months. then it would be conducted by the time it's over and the reporting is done another year has gone by so tha that reports mandated in the bill wouldn't be available. as i listen t listened to this n that the strike me first i start
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with the premise nobody involved in this process was malicious or meant to do harm and i want to say that you are one of the most capable officials i've met in this business. however, you put in the new class of carrier and put the future combat systems it seems to me there is a deeper issue going on and it strikes me that it's the desire to have the greatest technology as soon as possible and at the same time, control costs and to do it on time. we are trying to invent things
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while we are building them. we spend a lot of time reviewing programs that either failed or have just gone out of bounds in the cost and schedule and almost invariably there are common themes. a lot of it is the developing multiple technologies to integrate them at the same time on a major weapons platform of major system. they've written a number of reports. there is an inclination to underestimate the cost. >> particularly something that's never been built before. then when you get into that environment and get started, it is difficult to stop.
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on the other hand if you say we are going to fully test, build a prototype and test then that's going to lengthen your employment and that conflicts that need to have the weapons to meet the current threats. >> yes, sir. so what we are doing is we are cochairing the requirements we've used, production readiness reviews, program reviews and we are challenging every specification in terms of do we really have to have that or is there another way to do t this e ultimate capability we have to ask. the decision to revert back was a recognition in the 2001 timeframe that we had overreached in terms of
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technology versus what we really needed in the war fighting fighg capability so we go back to the tried and true but that decision made it likely that only building the three ships was going to make them more expensive. >> what it avoided is it recognized the cost and then going back and introducing the capabilities we need to keep pace with the threat the key word is incremental. we have a hearing on the carriers and as i recall we were trying to do more. it was over three ships and collapsed and we are paying the price in terms of that. how do we avoid this in the
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future? >> i gave you that 51 example. we threw away the notion of design and took the proven holder form and what we are doing is tailoring the ship to meet the requirements with replacing the year-long effort with myself and cochairing those to get down to a design that we are confident it is mature enough we are not introducing unnecessary risk. >> it seems to me though one of the things we need to think about is how to design the weapons systems in a way i hate to use the word modular but so they can be upgraded as technology improves instead of having to rebuild the whole thing. >> if you take a look at the vertical launching system, it
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starts off with th the the ex- d it now handles the sm three, the s. &, the tomahawk so now we can develop the missiles in the environment and bring them to the ship and then we deal with the upgrade to the land-based system. >> so the whole system isn't filled from scratch. thank you for holding this hearing and i look forward to future hearings and i hope we can continue this discussion of why does this keep happening. >> can i follow up for a moment? you are right on on the problem and we've done quite a bit of work. i think what we have is an age old acquisition culture where there are strong incentives when the program is getting started to overpromise on its ability to
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perform and underestimate the cost and load requirements on especially if you're only going to have platforms once a generation off to get everything on the platform you can so, we have to look at why those incentives occur. some is funding in the pentagon. and the pentagon. and if you show any weakness, your program isn't going to go forward, so you have to be a supporter of the programs going through. we have to learn where to take risks and how to take risks and i would say it's before that milestone decision that's where we need to make investments and try things out and be willing to put money. you are right if we take the time to do that, that's going to delay the capability of the war fighter and we find it to be unacceptable but when we have improved the program and it runs in we find that acceptable.
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i think we can get it right, and i empathize with the secretary, he ihe's in a very difficult position and i think that he's one of the fastest that i've had the pleasure to work with. but he's charged with executing the programs and defending the programs and that is a tough decision to put somebody in. but the process demands it. >> i would like to say one thing on the topic based on my experience over 26 years. we have to quit denying the facts. there's plenty of facts available about what is happening all along. yet as recently as 2013 the navy testified they can have off-the-shelf products and its very low in a very well-managed and that turned out not to be
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the case. again in 2013 the navy testified the linchpin now has over 850 reliable growth and the guidelines which in the meantime is between operational mission failure substantial feeding the requirement. that statement was incorrect. i've been reporting for several years but those claims were incorrect and the program office couldn't bring them to deal with what the facts were. ultimately they did with the independent review team, but whathat'swhat i have seen repean his and an ability, a refusal to deal with the facts are of how well the systems are or are not performing. it's because of these incentives and other things discussed. >> that's why some of us express such extreme frustration, because we are only as good as the information we receive in
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that it would cost 220 million per ship which now the secretary says that is absolutely wrong. nobody said it was wrong at the time. everybody said it was right. and yet, i don't want to take the senators tim but there are two stories i could relate to. one we needed very badly in iraq and the secretary of defense had to preside over the weekly meeting to get to the battlefield to save lives. then we had the other extreme for the pistol that's 200 pages long. it's gone through layer after layer and the reason why i am frustrated and other members are we can only make decisions on the information we get. if it is incorrect or false as
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the secretary just said, then how can we function effectively for the people we represent? that's why you sense this frustration among the members of the committee including the chairman because we haven't even talked about the aircraft carrier and the catapults. i don't want to take more time out of the committee but i hope that the witnesses understand if we have to bring this to a halt. fooling around on the fringes has proven to be unsuccessful. >> thank you mr. chair. i agree we have to have honest brokers and the people that will be held accountable. i don't know that we have seen that so far. but i do want to thank all of you for coming in today.
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and as you may be aware, improving the acquisition program management is a priority for me. i have passed legislation to pass governmentwide, not just the dod that governmentwide with an emphasis on areas that are designated by the gao and high risk and this especially includes the acquisition program management. i know we can all agree it's become an example of one of those challenges we mentioned the aircraft carrier. we won't go there today but that's another one we need to take a look at. during times of defense spending caps, we difficult it is and we have the entitlement spending that will further squeeze the military budgets. we cannot have repeats of acquisition failures like we've seen with lcs. acquisition success is bottom
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line a matter of national security. and this is a question for all of you if you could briefly respond please. the program changed its acquisition approach several times something cited by the gao as a reason for the increasing cause and also created a performance issues. in your opinion, what the program and others throughout benefit from a standardized approach to managing the portfolio based on the best practices not only of the industry but also the government before fully moving forward if you could briefly respond please, starting with you. >> let me just describe the experience broke the navy and we have retooled the entire way we do business when it comes to acquisition programs. i think we are trying to pull the best practices in.
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we are reviewing requirements and specifications that need to complete the production. we have program managers pretty much under a microscope right now and we've taken things like cost and the cost into the requirements so that you don't get to ignore cost while you are chasing the requirement. so just like speed, range, power if you start to infringe on the cost requirement that we put into the documents and you have to report just like you do if you infringe on one of the other requirements and identify what you are going to do to reverse that if yorevertthat if you arer otherwise we look at canceling or if necessary adding costs to the program. >> would that have been good before the process started? >> the witnesses that informed
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the congress, i don't think they knew. i don't think they knew or understand what it would cost so the system. why didn't they tell the congress. that's why sitting side-by-side holding program managers accountable understanding the details of the cost element by element and if we need to make trades we will make trades. >> thank you very much. vice admiral? >> trading back to the system from my perspective as the commander of the force is one of the things that we conducted
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showed that we needed to take a step back and apply and look at the lessons that we have learned to value the combatant commanders for the operational availability and i think it is a constant process and i know we will be continuing to look as we apply more of those as we learned them and then feeding them back into the system as it relates to the acquisition system if we can apply them ba back. >> if you could respond as well, i'm amazed that we are only just now discovering that we should be discussing these and have a finished product in mind before we start the project. >> we should use best practices. if you read the documents that describe the acquisition process, they incorporate most
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of these except they are often waived. what i've watched over 26 years is what i call a constant search for process solutions to what i think are fundamentally leadership problems. when the leadership is presented with a cost estimate that a number of people coming and we were warning that they were probably quite low when leadership doesn't make it so aware, doesn't question the information is being given and lets it go forward, that is a big problem. the process can help get them that information but if they don't do their jobs and question the information they are being given and it is recommended they send to the congress and elsewhere than they are failing and i watch those occur for 26 years and i'm certainly for process improvement and if you
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have a bad process to stop information from getting forward that doesn't enable file reviews, then that's all bad but if you have leadership that doesn't do its job, those process solutions will not fix things. >> that is well put. thank you. >> thank you to each of you for being here today, realizing that this topic is a challenging one for you. facts are stubborn things and leadership is important. i find your testimony the most damaging document concerning any government program i have ever
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read not just to what happened in the past, and my colleagues have focused on the procurement process but the decision of what should we do going forward. it's the ability to accomplish the mission and the testing that has been reduced in effect because the cybersecurity defenses are not amply developed so in this approach mr. francis has outlined the procurement
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process rather than a block purchase, what is the case now for going forward with this program at all? >> it is not my purview to say what ships the navy should buy or what capabilities they should have, that's the navy's decisi decision. what we have seen is that the ships are not meeting the performance requirements and we are well into the program. i can't predict what the future will hold. and i know it sounds parochial but i will say it again and i said in my opening comments whatever the navy decides to do with regards to going forward, the history here in this program as well as many others is clear
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and that is the only way you are going to discover the problems with performance that are significant that you have to deal with before you send sailors into harms way and combat you don't want to discover these ar for the first time when you're in combat the only way you're going to discover those problems is by giving realistic testing along the way. and i agree completely you want to fly before you buy, which apparently hasn't been done here and obviously what can any of the witnesses gave us that the ship is actually going to be capable of accomplishing its mission and protecting those are going to be onboard? >> we can give you information
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along the way with regards to what they expect them to do and what they are going to do is changing along the way as they learn more, which is appropria appropriate. its lead in the process, that it's appropriate. you will never get from me or anyone else, and honest ironclad guarantee that the ships are going to perform people now say they hope they would. those hopes are sincere but again, i know it sounds parochial. what you have to continue to do is do the testing that will tell you along the way whether your hopes are going to be realized, not deny the results of the testing and adjust accordingly along the way. now finally the navy is doing some of that and i commend them for it, but it took a while for all of that to occur.
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>> if i could just add there is a number of things to ensure the value of the ships as they go forward. in my discussions with the forward commanders both in the mediterranean and western pacific one of the things they tell me is we can't get enough of these ships to provide a presencthepresence and operatiol availability forward. i'm excited about the direction that we are taking them and the capabilities that we are bringing to the fleet. i'i am excited by the conversations i have as they look forward to integrating the capabilities that we are delivering forward. there's no doubt we have a lot of work to do but as recently as 18 months ago we step up the surface of the center in the organization that we are building that mirrors a similar
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organization they've had for a long time where we can take those good ideas and take the equipment and a capability that the system is delivering and put that in the hands of the sailors going forward and i think what we are finding, but i'm finding as we talk to these young men and women, yes there are problems and they are not shy about telling me what needs to be fixed. they are also excited not only about the potential capabilities that deliver but also the potential that is built into these particular ships. >> once you produce the whole comment in the navy has to support it. for the ones that are already committed to the contract the navy will have to do whatever is required for the mission equipment and so forth to make
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them viable. as we know, there's no guarantee that it's going to work out the way we thought. it's hard to say. the navy is committed and they are obviously entitled to that decision and it's at least a 14 billion-dollar commitment and there's opportunity costs. so the question for the committee is is that the next best use of the $14 million. >> thank you mr. chairman. >> something you said earlier, you said a handgun and one was 200 pages, almost 680 and has been in the works for ten years. it's a shining example of the disastrous procurement process. with the acquisition people did tell me that there's only 39 pages of the specification.
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so i asked on the other pages for notetaking are they relevant to the acquisition. look, first off i believe that everyone here is trying to do their best to put the capabilities out to protect the men and women and i think everybody's intention is to do that. i think you've inherited a problem and there's a lot i won't use my time on now but it talks about trying to skin a bear that was wrestled to the ground. i appreciate you are dealing with something in the expectations over a decade ago. i do think that there are things even in this administration we have to face up to going forwa forward. i worked in the complex consulting environments and when we would go about estimating large projects we would use the
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history as a basis for creating an estimate for what we are doing now. once we did that, we would still handicap it with examples of other projects that didn't hit our mark. it seems until we come up with an acquisition process that actually comes close to its original mark, we have to start handicapping any estimates here. if i go through the combat systems, it would seem anytime someone comes in here whether it is you or your successor i should multiply somewhere in the order of two or two and a half times the amount of money and the length of time necessary to deliver the platforms because past history has proven it to bo be the case most of the time; would you agree with that? >> i would, sir. >> i don't know how on earth anybody that's worked in your position for 42 years could have
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the amount of care that you do. i've got to believe you are tearing it out. the insights that you are providing, why can't that be instructed to the estimating process to begin with in other words in the same way that we would handicap these large complex projects dot anywhere approaching the complexity of what we are talking about here. why don't we have a function that you think you've got it right and the ideal circumstance, 200 million will be great but then have somebody come in and say because all of you have been consistently wrong we are going to require handicapping of a multiplayer. why shouldn't we have this methodology until we get our act together and deliver on time and on budget. so it's a really interesting discussion and if you look at
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the private sector, this is the point the chair and is getting too, accountability is pretty clear. if you blow the estimate and can't sell the product out of profit than the company loses money and you know who's accountable. that is another point the chair has made that we also have to change the procurement process. i used to call them memorable moments i would have a team that would come out and do these estimates and then we would do the handicapping. went to the handicapping. i would put a tag on every single one of them. was it the supplier or in my case subcontractor i would create a memorable moment if that person still worked for the government of the point in time we were two and a half times over costa were over the time budget they lost their job and i think in this process we have to
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start working that way or we will continue these poor results and the frustrated at the expense of having more money to put out in the systems that make men and women safer for completing our mission and i think we have to start doing this and i'm going to reach out to your office and to speak about maybe how we can load some of this and if it has happened, we've got the incompetent people doing it. >> can i just add something because in my previous life i worked as a career person on the cost assessment evaluation and there is a group that does cost estimates from the independent cost estimates and cost estimates of programs and they do it on the basis you described. it is a very rigorous process that exists, and a good
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literature that exists about how to do that and they do it very well and they present their estimates and then the acquisition leadership starts rationalizing why this time things will be different, things will be better so we go through the handicapping but in the opposite way they use described. >> dot description is correct. >> so the bottom line with all due respect, they've been wrong. this is a bipartisan failure. at some point you have to look at the history for what it is,
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it is the only way you will not repeat the mistake and the fact that the matter is if somebody wants to come up to me and say look at all these programs we've gotten right, it's not fair to say that we are all almost every single time. the data would be very compelling to support that argument so let's figure out a way to handicap this wee it so n have discussions and start realistic expectations. i'm sorry i've gone over. >> you wanted to comment. >> i think we owe you the data in terms of the cost growth and it's not a pretty picture. my comment with regards to the estimate i can't point to many programs offhand where we are
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not budgeted to the estimate with the exclusion of programs where we have a fixed project in hand i think we try to work collaboratively to arrive at the best estimates going forward. going back to the discussion with the importance of the milestone that's the critical point to get the independent cost estimate as best as possible budgeting the risks and everything else accounted for. >> again, wonders why and who did it. senator graham. >> we've gone from 52 ships to 40. why?
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>> of the requirement remains 52. >> but secretary carter said there would be 40. is it because the budgets? said the committee needs to know the sequestration problem is that right sex >> the budget control act, yes, sir. the decision was we have to take risks due to the budget. so he said i've got to do something because i don't have enough money so i'm going to go from 52 to 40. you said people out in the field they like this and they want more is that right? a what can it do that's different than the ones we have today very briefly?
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>> is it more stealthy? what makes it different? >> it will deliver going forward and i think that it will improve the ability. >> is this the modernization program? >> of the advanced technologies moving forward. >> so the modernization of the existing fleet is one of the goals to be achieved. the reason we are not building
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52 is because the money, not the demand. the world isn't safer to justify is that correct? who actually said $220 million or whatever the number was? >> we will have to go back to that record. >> let's find who said its $220 million, see who they are and figure out what we should do about it. why did it go up so much is it because we asked for things additional to what was required,
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was it a sort of add-on capability? >> the change was done after was he changed the specifications for the naval vessel rules to give it the degree of the design details associated. >> how much did that add to the cost? >> it's hard to put a number on it. >> you can't blame the original people that gave the cost estimate because they were not confronted in that requirement. >> that is a good point. >> who put the requirement on? i want to find out who said it needs to do this, not that so we
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can talk about why they decided that. do you have any idea who did that? >> i don't remember at this point, senator. but i think what happened is it was thought to be simple of the commercial vessels when they got in and they made the estimate before they entered the detailed design. they got the naval vessel rules and found out that it was way more complicated than they thought. >> if we don't modernize the force it's not going to work forever because we won't be fighting isis forever. there will be an environment that makes no sense that it makes no sen . . . is modernize so the next war we are in or need to prevent you are capable of doing both.
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modernization is not an exact science. part of the problem is when you modernize the force, it's not like just duplicating something. it's not a commodity. in the effort to modernize the force, the estimates of what it costs and the capabilities we need our ever-changing and the process completely broken and it goes back to what you said about leadership. if you want this to stop, somebody needs to get fired. we need to make every service secretary responsible for the programs under their control. hopefully in the future someone will be held accountable and get fired if this happens again.
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thank you mr. chairman. i wanted to follow-up on some of the questions that you received from senator blumenthal. you were talking about the hopes you had to make you used it three or four times just answering questions. in your written testimony is not full of hope at all. let me read a little bit of what he saiyou said with the written testimony and survivability neither is expected to be survivable in the high-intensity combat and none may include survivability features necessary to conduct sustained operations and in a combat environment. thabove when it makes the shipsa
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shadow of the ability of the modern navy frigate. with regards to the combat capability, you seem very concerned so that we ask a more operationally focused question. given with doctor gilmore said, are you confident say going to the south china sea that it could connect to other places to be able to survive if the chinese frigates responded with force, or could the fleet today survive attacks from small boats and other patrol craft like the ones that were using the recent capture by iran, are you confident of that given with doctor gilmore clearly states is a shift that's not combat survivable.
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>> yes, sir i am. >> argued doctor gilmore? >> no. all of the reporting i've done at the classified levels -- the original vision is that they could use unmanned systems that would go in and conduct combat operations and they could standoff away from threats but those systems that can reach out we don't have and it isn't clear when we ever will. so it was built to not be as survivable. it was built according to the rules which limits the amount that it's not as survivable as others and frankly it wasn't
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meant to be in that regard. the origina original if it coule realized that might have been fine but as i understand it the way it been written and the navy is continually revising it, it says that the ship would be out there preparing the way for the battle fleets because that's true then it will be subject to attack by any ship cruise missiles. and the navy's own requirements show the only thing the navy expects if it is hit by one of those kinds of threats is to be able to exit the battle area and/or provide for an orderly abandoning of the ship. against those kind of threats, the chinese are fueling thousands of them and that they are supersonic and very
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threatening and those will be a challenge for any but a particular challenge for these. are you confident putting our marines and sailors on the ship's to conduct the operations in the south china sea or standoff or confrontation. therthere's a number of variabls associated in the survivability. certainly the manufacturer, the integrity of the ship, the way that it's manufactured as part of the survivability and part is the damage control we do to ensure the survivability and part of it is the system that we put -- >> you don't want to agree with the written testimony. >> there are variables that you have to look at for the survivability of the ship.
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for example, the intensive training that we provid we provl the sailors not going to fight the ships at 25 battle damage. they get their mind in the arabian gulf and every analysis says it should have gone to the gulf but it didn't. that's one aspect that i think is lost in talking about the survivability of a ship. they don't want any to get hit and we rely on operations and intelligence and operating them to hopefully not have to lean into a punch. >> into situations. you have to take it in the proper context in that i don't
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think we would find them operating alone and unafraid in the middle of the fleet. if they where we would do our best to fight the ship and defend. >> can i add something, senator? >> it gets at the issue the admiraadmiral was raising. of course we don't let them hit the ship they are all trained in the measures they are supposed to take.
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in every instance there was major damage and the combat capability was fully lost. with the lack that is driven by the small size and speed requirements, the hit on one of these ships is going to be a real problem and we analyzed it that enables the fight.
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>> senator cruise? >> good morning, gentlemen. thank you for the testimony this morning and for your dedicated service to the men and women in uniform. the threat we're facing is increasing across the globe with the nation's adversaries bolstering the defense capabilities and focusing on new technology in the hopes they can deny access to the united states navy or compete in the limited scenario. the adversaries prove the men and women in the navy operate in an incredibly difficult environment every single day. whether facing threatening forces from iran, the russian belligerence and unsafe practices, china's egregious claims and expansions to the south china sea the sailors are to be commended for their professionalism and steadfast
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service. however these should remind us that there is too much at stake. there is room for improvement in the program, and i appreciate your candid testimony regarding the efforts are already underw underway. instead of looking back i am concerned future problems could have an impact between the carrier and the f. 35 procurement, the lcs and the ballistic submarine the navy must make the most efficient use of every single dollar that it receives if we are to have any hope of rebuilding the fleet. there've been many studies to determine the size and wit the x
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of forces including the bottom-up review and the 2010 quadrennial defense review. mosmost studies indicate that we need more than the current plan to build ships in order to defend the global interest. in the time since the reports the navy has shrunk to about 275 loyal commitments have remained relatively constant this has resulted in a larger percentage on any given day and at the expense of other mission requirements. the incoming administration has set a goal to increase the navy to 350 ships and two reverse the trend that is a goal with which i strongly agree. my question is can you provide for advice to the committee on how we can accomplish a 350 ship fleet and what an appropriate mix might look like and where
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you believe they will fit in. >> let me describe it right now the staff is conducting an update to the assessment that was last updated in 2014. he has been very clear in the testimony and in the public describing that the threat. it's taking place right now and identifying whainidentifying whx of ships we need for the future. the number will go north.
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what are the capabilities we will need a platform by platform and how do we do that as affordably as possible so that we don't add more pressure to the budget than is absolutely necessary. in spite of that construct, it is the small service combat and today ca come and we talked abot the modification to the platform going forward. but number 40 in terms of a budget determination. if we fail to deliver the small surface combatant in those numbers, then what that means is we are going to put more pressure on the high-end of our structure and that's going to add costs and take those ships off of where they need to be and tax them in terms of operational demands in terms of where they need to be and put more pressure in terms of turnaround times ane entire operations to the cycle. >> what do you see as the biggest challenges facing growing to a 350-ship fleet and
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what do you see a realistic time frame for that snr -- >> uniqueness and imperative in terms of schedule and the capability that we have to provide and then its cost. it's a high-cost program. we are and when i say, we, cno and myself are on top of that programs in terms to have design process, in terms of plan to go ensure that it does not grow.ns in fact, we are looking at ways to find it more affordable. that already stands as a challenge going forward. the next thing we need to do is leverage existing designs. what we don't want to do is bring a whole bunchover new design to the table and add technical risk that that brings, the start-up cost that that adds and uncertainty and the amount of time that that will take over
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the design cycle.capa that's the path that we are ont and the next is raising the rate as we produce the ships. when we look at fore structure going forward we have a very serious shortfall in attack submarines. we have to stem that as best as possible.best a that would be the first place we go in terms of increasing rates. long-term results in dropping off in terms of total number of large surface combatants because we build at such a high rate during reagan build-up years. we are going to start selling down 60 to 70 number service combatants. today we are below what the --
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agreed to and we have to get up to that number and we are on that path. reality is these are high utility platforms, they are high demand, high utility and very flexible, wherever we have operations going and find a way to support that operation. and so there is -- that would be the next leg in terms of increasing our production rates. >> thank you. >> i'm sure that you will get support from this committee on that. >> you will not get support if we have doubled and redoubled the cost of these systems, we owe the taxpayers a lot more than that. this has been a helpful hearings. i thank the witnesses. we are adjourn.
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[inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] >> sunday on book tv's in-depth. we are hosting a discussion on the december 194 is -- 1944 attack. 12 days to the attack. countdown to enphamy.
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go to booktv.org for the complete weekend schedule. >> so i decided to spend much more time on the young grant. i spent a week at west point trying to understand how this man could finish 21st out of 39 at west point and therefore sometimes viewed by these biographers as historical elect the sweal lightweight and yet he said of himself, i must apologize, i spent most of i look forward when you can ride on a railroad and eat in a restaurant along with every person. that day must come.
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it took 90 years for that day to come. grant was the last american president to hold those kind of views. >> sunday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span's q&a. >> now, a discussion about military innovation and how the pentagon is addressing cybersecurity threats, the panel was a day-long forum by policy initiatives. it's 45 minutes. >> welcome back. my name again is chris griffin, executive director at the foreign policy initiative. if you can kindly make it back to your seats so we can begin our conversation for the today. as courtesy, if you have cell phones, please make sure to put them silent mode for currency of those around you and, of course, our speakers. the next panel discussion would be on opportunities and challenges for defense innovation and reform.
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this really will continue on some of the threads that came up at our first discussion between chairman and senator, immediate challenges to defense readiness today and also point that chairman thornberry raised enjoyed by united states forces going forward. we have an excellent group to discuss this topic today. moderate by dr. thomas mahnken, chairman and ceo for the center and strategic budgetary assessments. a senior research professor at john hopkins international school of studies n. the discussion today will be benefits -- ben fitzgerald. rebecca heinrichs and i greatly
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look forward for your comments and ask you to join me in joining them today. >> thanks, chris. and i think the panel's topic are charged is a very -- not just brought up by senator this morning. at least since world war ii the united states has sought to maintain a qualityive prospective adversaries that. was the focus of a lot of effort during the cold war. over the last quarter century, the u.s. has enjoined dominance at least from a qualitative stand opinion.
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the unipolar moment. over the last 145 years, focus of defense has been quite rightly counter insurge and counterterrorism. whether because of russia's aggression in eastern europe and china's assertiveness in asia, it's quite appropriate as we close out the obama administration, look to the trump administration, we can kind of take stock of where we are and where we need to to be. so certainly in recent years the obama defense department has placed emphasis on the defense innovation initiative and as we approach the end of the obama administration, i wanted to ask,
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ask our panel, you know, how they would take stock of those efforts from their, you know, from their standpoint, whether it's running a science and technology program at a think tank, focusing on -- on missile defense and other areas or from defense industry. where do we stand with the third asset strategy and whatever it will become in future months and years? >> so there's a lot to unpack in there and i think sort of my bottom line up front would be that, i think, leadership in the pentagon and also frankly on the hill have created a window of opportunity for some very significant change. we are going to see, i think, at noon today details but we are going to significant structural changes and also under the leadership of secretary we have
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seen focus on the need to improve technical advantage. that's great. i would also say that while it's great that we have a common understanding that we need to improve, how we get there is not clear. the third offset strategy, i think, is important and helps us address one very particular program which is our ability to continue to project power, conventional military power. that's one thing that's separate from in some ways other innovation conversation. a lot of those actions have been very good. i think diox is great, russia hosting an event later with them this afternoon. not to compete with this. those have been innovations outside of the bureaucracy, around the bureaucracy. what we haven't seen a fundamentally different approach to how we generate military technical advantage and how we pair that military that the
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technology with new concepts of operation and i think that that's what we need. i'm happy to unpack in more detail but i don't want to -- >> great, i'm happy to be here. if i can two back to 2014 when then secretary of defense hagel introduced the third offset strategy. he provided context about what he was talking about, what the threats were and why we needed this new third offset strategy. and some of the things he talked about were that less sophisticated actors like al quitia and hezbollah were beginning to challenge the united states in ways that we haven't seen before and on the higher end, competitors china and russia were advancing in military modernization programs in ways that the united states hasn't seen in decades. he listed some specific technologies that they were spending a lot of time and
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resources and energy in and they were areas in which they saw vulnerability where the united states had and they were taking advantage of that vulnerability and exploiting it and so they were drropping longer range missiles. he mentioned missiles multiple times. hopeful administration officials in laying out specifically where we are getting behind and i like specificity and in the age of trump we are going to have more specificity and less vagueness which i'm excited about. that will help to move forward so we know what we are talking about and not just talking in vague terms.
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he specifically made clear china, china and russia were challenging the united states in space and that posed a unique problem because everything else we do in the pentagon depends on what we do in space and so space is unprotected or does have vulnerabilities or getting behind or others are challenging us in this particular domain that is very bad things for the united states across the rest of the pentagon. and so i think that is going to be, if i had my way, i think that we are going to be focusing more on space, what we do in space, national security space, surveillance in space. i think that president-elect trump is a new kind of -- president elect will be a new kind of president. we have gotten used to inside the beltway and inside the pentagon. we sort of all know what each
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other means when we say very vague terms where the new president is going to want to be convinced an persuaded and so, i think, everybody is going to have to do their homework when we start talking about what it is that we want the administration to do and that's a very good thing. it's going to have to make thing, the most cost-effective way to do it and so i think things like we just don't put capabilities in space because it might be provocative, i think you will have to make the case if that's what you think. another perspective and say we can't have passive space capabilities, we need to have more defense capabilities in space. that's going to be the next phase in ballistic missile defense capabilities in addition to directed technologies, the mokv on gmd system to protect united states homeland, i think we are going to see more investments in that. and so all of this means that, we just -- we've taken too long
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to come to this place where it's no longer a matter or should we do it some day that we have to do that, adversaries are challenging that way. we have to do that. and all of that means, my last point on this that we sort -- when we begin to talk about the think tank world and inside the pentagon how we are going the pay for the new offset strategy, a lot of people talk about legacy systems, we are going to build system and now, oh, no, we are still fighting the wars in which newer advance technologies, f-35 isn't so ready and we are keeping the a-10 x i'm excited about because i love that airplane and so is john mccain. we are still using it. now, where are we going get this money? we have to increase the top loin. i'm optimistic that with the new administration we will be increasing the top line.
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we will have to do both. that means getting rid of bca which is, i think, is the direction we are heading. >> where you think we stand with third offset strategy and initiative and defense more broadly? >> thanks, tom, great to be here this morning representing the defense industry and the conversation. i would like to begin by talking about where we are in the nation from my point of view. one of the great things in my job i get to go out and interface with me of young women and men who are telephoning the nation and i would contend that we remain to be head of fighting force across the felony far none. we have the best people, they are well trained and they frankly have the best equipment compare today -- compared to any other nation in the world. that said, there's real
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challenges many that we talked about this morn by chairman. we are spread too thin. we have acquisition system that need to be more agile specifically regarding the third offset, we are investing in virtually every technology that's highlighted in the third offset, big data analytics, open system, autonomy, directed energy on and on. and we are demonstrating a lot of those technologies right now. not only lockheed martin but competitors, teammates that cross the defense industry. the question is how do we fill it more quickly, i believe. when we look at the adversaries we face around the felony, a lot of this is presence. you know, we are talking about the western pacific.
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eastern europe and in order to enable that presence we do need substantial force structures that has been on a decline for many years now and i think that's one of the big challenges is transitioning this technology to a larger structure as we move forward and that will in my view enable us to maintain qualitative advantage. >> i think we have a fundamentally strategic problem and while i'm very sympathetic, i believe positive steps in the couple of years. we had an acquisition system that hasn't been great since the 1970's and yet able to maintain qualitative advantages. what's changed? we have seen that in the latter part of 20th century we had a strategic alignment with strategic needs which is really
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until the end of the cold war containment and we had a finite technology that is we needed to invest in and very clear business models in terms of defining requirements from strategic threats through technologies out of defense industry and we lock that in with export controls. none of those things pertain today. we have a range of threats from terrorism to cyber threats to great power competition. we have shown no appetite to pick which ones we are going to try to address. we have a much wider range of technologies. we still need to maintain legacy systems. we can't walk away from that. yet, we are still trying to use the same business model. it did you want add up. that's what we need to look at not just acquisition report. what's our approach, how are we going make those choices, that's what we have not yet had the conversation. >> that's the topic i want us to address in a minute but before we get there, i should pick up
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on something that a couple of you mentioned. yeah, we can't do it all, so what are the areas and rebecca addresses a little bit, what are the areas that are particularly promising in your view as we think about innovation and maintaining an advantage going forward and, again, i will be kind of straightforward about this and i will go back down this way. >> i will answer quickly. i'm increasingly skeptical of trying to pick technology winners, i don't think we can do that. we need to maintain a broader portfolio in a range of technologies and figure out internal methods or more agile in stying based on the threat environment we will move these things toward and these things back. we need portfolio where we can take prototyping and i'm more interesting in that type of innovation rather than saying la
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sers. i don't know if we will be facing an enemy that addresses that. the one gap that i see in what we do the ability to incorporate commercial technology and adapt it to military forces. that's where we have the most opportunity going forward. we have no process for actually adapting that for truly military services and to generate military advantage from commercial technology. that's where i would be focusing. >> you mentioned missile defense. you want to add to that? >> sure, what i will say i'm encouraged and optimistic that the new administration means for the pentagon because we get to sort of take a fresh look at where these vulnerabilities are, where is the united states being targeted. again, i talk about the missile age.
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i talk about missiles a lot not because i ran comely selected, all the way from north korea on the low end to china on the high end, that is how they are -- they're vinesting in technologies to cohort the united states. so a whole slew of people that are familiar with the threats and acquisition process that needs to be done in order to close gaps. they all agree with findings and recommendations in the study. what we found was that the united states is not a matter of -- of course, they are.
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if you go back to what is the problem in order to move forward with some of the more advanced technologies and it's been policy. united states has been intentionally holding back in particular areas of advance technologies for fear of becoming provocative, simply don't make sense anymore because this is what the russians and chinese are doing. some of the challenges, they are problems with resources. that's actually a more -- that's a shorter hurdle than, i think, we can clear. i think some of the bigger problems have been matter of policy and i'm excited about the opportunity that we can have in terms of changing the policies and actually we talk about america's technological edge or technological advantage. i would like to see american primacy. and so i think that's a very
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good thing and i think once you sort of say that and get that out of the way that's what we are doing, we are moving forward in that way, we are going maintain peer status with china and russia and i think the sky is the limit and it comes down to where are we going to get some of the money, the budget control access has been confuse to go me because nobody wants it. the congress doesn't want it, the president doesn't want it and yet here we are we have it and the president threaten veto bills even though he says he doesn't want it. the report that was settled, i don't know if these figures are official but this is what the media is reporting now, $3.2 billion above the pb, so congress is excited about spending more money on the pentagon, which it should if we are going to spend anywhere it's on american security, so i think that, you know, we will see what happens with president obama and his last few weeks here and what he decides to do with this bill
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and if we can pass it and that kind of stuff, but i do think that we were sort of headed a different direction. >> rob, how about you? >> well, i think rebecca made several good points there about maintaining an american privacy. going back to your point of expanse of task that we are asking military to do, i don't see it changing. we are going to have to maintain capability of threats and counterterrorism. and so we've got to be be able to address all of them and, i think, the priorities and what we invest as a nation to address those priorities are very important. so if clarity in the national military strategy is something that, i think, is going to be key. we are going to have to budget accordingly to rebecca's point and that will enable us to do what we need to do around the felony. you know, i think the other
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points have been made. we are investing in technologies as i mentioned earlier, we are prototyping and proving out the technologies, so if we are seeing mature capabilities that now need to transition to programs of record so that we can in fact, bring about the force we need. i can tell you but that one pops to my head i think about the f- 117. came back in desert storm. but it began with a program that many of you may not know called have blue. that was the prototype and improve that had we could fly the hopeless diamond as it was called and we proved that out and then transition to a program of record. i think that's what's going to
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be key going forward as we prove out these technologies, that they actually transition move forward quickly. >> so there's a challenge there, right? the challenge of being in a era of budgetary constraints on the one hand, there's a lot of reluctance to transition to program of record, on the other hand, there's a tifnt set of challenges coming with opening up the budgetary because tendency if you have a lot of money, whether he keep doing the same, perhaps less urgency for doing things differently. maybe we will start with rob and come back this way. talk more about the budgetary dimension of all this. how big a constraint the budget is right now and what's the best
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way to move forward sensibly in. >> well, i think i made my start by answering your question, we talked a little bit about f-345 earlier today and we think about just in the spectrum for example . but now very mature capable system but the rate that we are buying airplane is insufficient. all the services are ready for new equipment. and we should start by buying the leading-edge technology that is are already available to us today because that will not only provide us more capability but it's going to get us out of the older airplanes that are costing substantial amount of money to maintain and are insufficient against future threats. i would begin there and the next
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step is to modernize airplanes. over the life cycle of all aircraft, all successful aircraft programs have had robust modernization, continue to add capability over its life cycle. so we need to be doing that with our advance systems as well. this is not just airplanes but everything we've invested in and the third step is continue to invest in technology that's 25 or 30 years away so, again, coming back we are investing today. some day we will field another fighter. so the budget is not there to do that today and frankly coming back the f-35, it becomes the bill payer for everything else we want to do. that's not the best way to go about an acquisition.
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>> you pointed out that bca doesn't make no sense except it's the law of the land. assuming and i think it is an assumption, but assuming that that changes, i mean, how do we go about spending money the most effective way, the most responsible way but also the way that gives us the greatest advantage? >> sure. every time talk about how to increase the defense budget people immediately think that that that i don't care about defense waste, we can do both, we can fix both. we have been -- we have been planning and spending money in way that is don't make sense at all in the pentigon. some in the room would agree. we can buy more of a particular item at once. this sort of buying a couple of items, procuring a couple of
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them and buying a couple more and letting production lines go cold and having to restart them and finding people to rebuild them and expertise, that's incredibly expensive. it's not thinking through in the long run how the country can spend money more efficiently. if this is how -- if this is how families ran personal budgets, we could see a lot of bankrupt people and we need to start thinking about how do we spend or plan or prioritize another -- we talked about the f-35 a little bit. as we put together the new budget and air force considering a major-ticket item. i heard and these were just people thinking out loud, maybe we should kick the new icbm down the road, we need to pay for f-35 now. why in the world is the f-35 competing. that makes no sense. we need to have the nuclear
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triad and fighter jets. in no reality does it make sense to punt on what i would argue is quite possibly the backbone of nuclear triad, something that we absolutely need and we can't afford to kick it off to the right. we need to prioritize program and figure out what the united states is going to prioritize and what we need and can no longer punt on and we need to start figuring how many items we can buy at once so that we are not having trickle down effects and just creating a lot of extra cost on that end as well. i will leave it at that. i have more ideas. >> so i'm not sure about that. yes, we want efficiency in the programs that we do but i think we have seen cold war that has pushed toward efficiency, so we are going to have a single multirole combat aircraft and that's going to be less expensive. i'm not sure that that turned
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out to be the case. i'm not criticizing from the good work to build the f-35. when we talk about the cost associated with that, aircraft that has -- cost for hour is $45,000, that's not strategy on the part of our enemy. that's a self-imposed strategy. i love when people ask me about cost-imposing strategy. we like running it ourselves but other people question it. i agree, bca is irresponsible but i don't think it's purely an issue of top line. we need to think about what is an actual portfolio investment strategy across the range of things and one of the ways in which we can buy down risks depending on how you countered since early 1990's we spent 45
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to $90 billion worth of taxpayer funds of projects that yielded zero capability. when we look at future combat system, cost over-runs, we are not starving for dollars, assume efficiencies of a 50 or 60-year life cycle. we don't know what's going to happen next year. we are continuingly surprised and we need to have a capability portfolio that allows us to respond to that. it'll be less efficient and more expensive as we go but less likelihood of massive multibillion dollar failures, strategic failures in the future. >> okay. we have about 15 minutes left for the session and if previous sessions are a clue, you probably have lots of questions to ask our panelists. so we've got microphones out here.
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sir, in the front row center. >> hi, i'm a former cia officer, usa marines and i've been in the private sector. you all are very smart but i haven't heard one word about ground forces who do 80% of the fighting, 80% of the dying and get 1% of the budget. 1%. our guys are still using the same family of infantry weapons that i used in vietnam. and i'm hearing about icbm's and f-35's. we have to put more attention, i think, and energy and resources into the people that are doing the fighting. thank you.
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>> responses? >> i don't think you'll find anybody up here that disagrees with you. i think your point is well taken. i think that, you know, it's exactly right. it's -- one of the best to increase moral is give them better stuff and make sure they're well cared for. i certainly don't disagree at all. >> what i would say we've actually been investing a lot in the army and a lot in the marines corps for a particular type of war that we have been fighting and if you would take -- i've done this, you know, a couple of times and a couple of contexts, take a picture of a soldier in 2001 and compare that with a soldier in 2016 and you'll actually see a lot of change and i know, you know, the
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army likes to and the marine corps likes to say it's not about technology but technology does matter in ground combat and we've invested in certain areas of technology. the body armor that soldiers and marines, airmen, sailers too wear today is much better than it was 15 years ago. the tactical situation awareness, commanding control is much better than it was 15 years ago. but other areas that are -- that could be crucial or decisive in a high intensity conflict against a capable adversary, things like electronic warfare, things like active protection system for armored vehicles, because we've been investing in particular areas of technology, those other areas have been differed, right?
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we retrain artillery units away from artillery because of iraq and afghanistan. now we are entering a period where artillery and artillery threats are more important. i don't know that it's necessarily a lack of investment. we've invested for a particular set of wars that we've been fighting and i think the challenge particular for army and marine corps, the requirement -- >> in terms of percentage in terms of what things cost, that's not necessarily indicative that they are getting everything they need. the army tends not to. i will say that some of the things that i mentioned specifically specially on space are dependency on space, you want to take care of guy that is are deployed and they need to be able to see and where the enemy is moving and that's why i talk
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about and try to emphasize on surveillance as well. but they need to make sure the army has great access to those new technologies that might end up in the budgets of the air force, for instance. >> they are not surprised by an ambush by 17 raggedy taliban. we are changes that we will need to figure out as we advance to make sure that the people who need them the most actually have access to them. >> a lot of the conversation has been if the united states does these things and we will win, we are also engaged in a multiparty conflict where other people get to vote and we are seeing that
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the advance of commercial technology has really enabled nonstate actors in the ground domain. it's not ha -- that hard for adversaries to have encrypted and own satellite imagining. they have moved ahead relative to us more than we have seen in other domains. the other thing that i would say, we will hear from general later today. i think we will disagree with what i'm about to say, the army does not have a clear vision for what it need to do in future and does not have -- have not started vehicle modernization program. they don't know what they're going to do and that's fundamentally problematic. the army today is where the marine corps was in 2010. here is what the marines corp.
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needs to do, the army is less clear. the frustrating there is a lot of the stuff in easternen europe, classic army stuff. that is started to get to a place. >> do you want to weigh in on this? >> first of all, thank you for your service and thank you for recognizing women and men who are out defending our country in the army and marines corps and the ground. >> yes, we talked about airplanes but the technology that we have mentioned earlier have applications across airplanes, sub surface, army. data analytics. we have done a number of activities and putting that information on the hands of the
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men and women on the ground and that's key and we will continue to do that, those types of -- advance those types of technologies. so i think we are addressing -- addressing this. the other thing i would say is many of the things we are doing are related to the special forces. not everything we can talk about in this particular form but there's a lot going on behind the scenes. >> thank you. >> i would like to move on to the next question. gentlemen back on the far, far right. hold on. you have a mic coming. >> my question is about protection against compromise of technologies. something that's probably not seen so much but is incredibly important to prevent banwagonning. i'm i'm wondering if you believe we are spending enough to prevent reverse engineering,
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compromise, we are seeing a lot of news about infiltrators, there was news yesterday about a german intelligence officer, it was exposed in domestic intelligence agency over there and we've had very recent revelations of information breaches that the national security agency. i'm wondering if you see that the prevention of compromise is a focus area or something that we should spend more time on? >> i'm actually going to go to rob first from an industry perspective, that's -- you know, i will give you the first crack at it and if anybody else wants to weigh in briefly -- >> cyber is one of the big issues we are paying a lot of attention to. it's a continuous, you know,
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challenge because the enemy gets better, we have to get better. if they get better, we have to get better. we are continuing to try to keep that advantage versus what our adversaries are doing to basically steal our technology, so it's at the forefront of what we are doing every day. i would also say that there's an element of taking the fight to the enemy, if you will in offensive cyber, so you don't want to be playing defense all of the time and there are things that will keep them from playing defense and i will leave it at that but great question and at the top of the list for things that we are paying attention to. >> so i think very briefly, i agree with everything that rob said. also we need to assume that these things are going to continue to happening even if they are not happening from espionage. we can't let the features of our capability being the key differentiator for advantage.
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they need to have more diversity and be able to pair those technologies with new and context of operation so even if the adversary can reassessor technology, we can still kill point in seven days. >> next, the gentleman with the glasses. right there. >> mixture of funding with specifically with the new administration, and i'm speaking specifically about basic research, capabilities 10 to 20 years down the line, thank you. >> anybody want -- >> basic research by definition occurs in academia and outside the industry. >> i think it's balanced and does need to be funding in the basic research which is going on.
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some of it in the skunk words. we do some of that work. we tend to be in more the 6263 arena versus earlier technologies. there are parts of our corporation are doing it as well as rest of industry but what we are trying to figure out where's the balance. when you invest in early technologies, you want to see them ma sure and as mature technologies are available, you want to transition those into the program record. the way i have our organization set up, we have a technology, we have a program record arm and i'm always looking for challenging the technology arm on how we are going to advance it to the programs of record. so great point and i think, you know, again comes to finding plans and resources but we need to continue to invest in basic research. >> the only thing that i would
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add too, we finish for the last several years we have a lot of technologies that have been sort of in limbo in research in development that are ready to move beyond so although i'm a huge proponent in investing in research for the next generation because you have to continually look ahead, we have plenty of really good stuff. we talk about laser technology but we always talk about how five years away we will get people who were serious about it for a matter of policy and get some money behind it and see what happens to these programs that have been five years continually away and we will start seeing up close. remember, the airborne laser program right before it was cut up into pieces, it shot down a missile. some people had problems, directed energy on 747 so we had some questions about the concept of operations but prove that had the technology was able to do
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what we wanted it to do. now we are trying to look at energy and see how we can perhaps get on a more useful platform but that's just one example that we are ready to go on system technologies that we are sitting for a while. >> i will just say that the united states basic research capability specially through dod lab network is one of the key differentiators and i worry over the next 4 to 8 years that stuff we can have immediately and eating our own seed corn and that could be dangerous for the future. i agree at the same time that we do need to have better methods by which we can harvest the great work that's done and move things forward but that shouldn't be at the expense of that fundamental research because other people can't do it in the way that we can. >> the sign of any good panel is we leave questions on the table. i know i see a number of hands up but in the interest of
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keeping us on schedule, that would have to be the last question. i want to ask you to join me in thanking our panelists and thank you for the discussion. [applause] >> leo shane joins. he joins us to discus the president elect's pick for secretary which mr. trump will announce on monday. leo, this is retired general james mattis. tell us a little bit of general mattis and what's at issue? >> very colorful language, also known as being real warrior scholar, someone well respected in congress and expected not to face too much opposition but there's a problem of the national security act that's in place which says that if you've served in the military, you've got to wait at least 7 years
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before you're eligible to be secretary of defense. general mattis retired only a few years ago. he's going to be at 4 years by the time this comes around. he's going to need a special waiver to get through and there's a few lawmakers who have raised an eyebrow about that. >> how long has that restriction been in place on a member of a military serving in a civilian role? >> this has been around since 1940's, as soon as congress passed it they element granted a waiver for former secretary of defense marshal but when it was first passed the original restriction was ten years back in the 80's, they shortened out to seven years but in this case it's still going to be a problem, a couple more hoops for folks to jump through. senator mccain supports mattis nomination and he thinks he's a great pick and willing to shepherd the legislation through that will be need today take care of this, but we did hear objections from jill brand right
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after the announcement yesterday. she has concerns that this was supposed to be a civilian post and not a military post. so she will put up resistance, make sure that the senate has to go through a normal procedure for passing legislation, not allow unanimous consent, not allow to sail through without having conversation. >> well, so let's go through some of those hoops that you talk about. which committees would this wafer need to go through? would it need to pass in the house and senate before he's confirmed? and what kind of threshold are we talking about? >> yeah, so we are still trying to figure out the details because this isn't something that comes up on a regular basis. this is going through the senate arms services committee. senator mccain said that he's outworked trying to bill up appropriate legislation to make sure this sails through as
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easily as possible. since it is legislation it will have to go through both chambers and subject to rules and vote totals that a normal piece of legislation would be. there's going to be 60 senators who sign off of this as opposed to normal nomination process where they need simple majority. we will be a little complicated, interesting to see how it all unfolds but as i said, there's pretty widespread support for him in this pick. he's very popular figure within the military, within congress, a lot of folks are happy to see that president-elect trump has picked someone familiar with foreign policy and these issues, image something that's going the take just some spray -- extra paperwork but not be obstacle for him. >> please that had the president elect has selected general mattis for secretary of defense, one of the fine military officers of his generation.
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what has senator mccain said specifically about getting the waiver through congress? >> just that he's willing to work on it and he's at work to go through this. he doesn't see the nomination is any sort of real concern, real obstacle. on the democratic side, the few democrats who have brought this up, senator jill brand is the only one that is saying that she will oppose nomination. we don't have any problem with general mattis, but there's a reason this law is on the books and we need to take serious consideration of that. >> here is a look, of course, senator jill brand from new york, she tweeted as well, while i respect general mattis service i will pose waiver as fundamental principle of american democracy and you said you're really not hearing any more than what you heard from her about senators wanting to block the nomination? >> you know, congressman on the house side that he has some of the same concerns, adam smith,
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ranking member of house arms services committee, he said he has the same concerns but again it's concerns with this idea of do we have a civilian-controlled military or military-controlled military. no one is saying anything against general mattis at this point. he has had some colorful language and some controversial position that is got him forced out of the obama administration. >> right. >> openly fighting with them towards stance in iran. but at least on the hill right now it's a theoretical discussion about military civilian control and not so much a discussion about general mattis' credentials. >> if the waiver is passed do you see pretty smooth sailing if nomination is confirmed? >> for the number of questionable or possible controversial nominations we are seeing, this doesn't seem to be one of them. a lot of folks are going to say a lot of the right things and maybe we will see some nice conversations about what it means to have a
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civilian-controlled military on the hill instead of attacks on general mattis' past. >> leo, we will keep following you on twitter. leo shane and we will look for your writing in military times. militarytimes.com. >> thank you. >> here is a look at some of the programs of the coming weekend. today mit film heather author of open to debate, how william buckley put america in firing line. ..

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