tv Today in Washington CSPAN November 28, 2009 2:00am-6:00am EST
>> welcome to the 48 institute on ethics in journalism in washington. my name is edward, i hold the ninth chair. what happens in this auditorium will be happening for the next hour or hour and a half. and it is the public part of a much larger and age it rigid arduous educational undertaking. -- much larger and arduous educational undertaking. students from our ethics class have joined with a distinguished group of journalists and academics to wrangle over the rights and wrongs of cases. that seminar takes up about seven hours.
i know i can hear your disappointment, but i want to take a moment to recognize these fellows and thank them for coming here. for them to come here is a mark of exceptional gallantry. the first is cesar andrews, coming off of a career from the country's biggest newspaper change -- chain. he led the free press 2009 puliztetzer for local reporting. john is an award winning producer for cbs news sunday morning in new york where he has produced more than 150 stories. michael gettler, currently with
pbs. he was a foreign correspondent and editor, and executive editor of the tribune i. the associate dean for columbia, she joins after a 31-year career with "the philadelphia enquirer ," which in her day, was an outstanding news organization. with both ph.d. degrees, john became an academic in northern new york city. reed williams, formerly with "the daily progress."
and she heads of the committee's freedom of information and open government operations. she teaches at the university of maryland and american university. please join me in giving these fellows a warm round of applause. [applause] tonight, -- i used to work with a reporter that covered federal courts and went on to become insanely successful journalist that spoke to many movies and big budget movies with the likes of bruce willis, colin farrel and samuel l. jackson. he said to never change flights to the last minute. if anything happens, you will be
there at the lead of the disaster story. so the rule was, never make it easy for reporters to come up with a mindlessly that contains what appears to be some poignant fact that some things up. -- sums things up. when i invited our speaker, i ignored that rule. it is rather strange, jason blair speaking on ethics? why not bernie madoff speaking to financial planners? i wrote back that because i was intrigued by this somewhat medieval ethical notion, it would be just to punish students. perhaps he would like to keep out of the next ethics committee.
-- keynote on the next ethics committee. i am in the business of helping train the next generation of journalists. regardless of what you may have heard, there will be a next generation of journalists. i have had the privilege of working with some of them. they're going to be even better than we were. and we were very good. they're calling will be to engage the people that are at the center of major events of their time. not through e-mail, but up close. our speaker is one such person. that is not to complement him, that is a state of fact. it is the kind of person that we should be prepared to engage in to confront. i also want to know as much as i can about the gsmart,
idealistic people that do things that are personally and institutionally destructive. this is tricky stuff. when you talk about context, people try to think that you are switching responsibility. it is the culture of the wicked "new york times." that is not important. institutions often unwittingly do aid and abet. to some degree, it does to the village. the misunderstanding of context may explain, but cannot absolves. we appeal our capacity for compassion and forgiveness. compassion and forgiveness. as i have had occasion to say, having jason blair here is a departure for us. people who exemplified the best, people like ellen thomas,
who have stood up to pressure like matt cooper. it is a departure for jason blair, too. i hope he ends up glad he agreed to come. now before i give him a brief intro. a few program notes. he will talk for about 25 minutes. i hope the media folk did not take this wrong, jason has agreed to take questions afterwards. he will be available for press q&a. i will ask the press to continue.
i will ask them, to let the reporters do their jobs. i hope that is ok. the last thing i want to do is muzzle the press. not a town meeting. if any the has been preparing a fiery denunciation, save it for another time and place bu. too often our brothers and sisters provide discourse in the media. please, refrain. he is in centerville, virginia. he was a reporter from "the new york times." he had a front-page story that he "had enacted a journalistic fraud." they said it was of a trail of
trust. -- a betrayal of trust. it said that he mislead readers. he fabricated comment. he concocted scenes. he selected from across -- photographs the been the more he had not. they found that the 73 stories he had written, 36 had potential problems. they took this very hard. they ran more than 7000 words. by comparison, when the paper finally recognized it covered a weapon to mass destruction the
and the knowledge mitterand 1100 words. it was published on -- ran -- the acknowledgement ran the 1100 words. it was published. they were forced to resign. to some observers, it looked like the affair was a tire that was a being handled recklessly. he who longed to matter ended up marrying in ways he had not anticipating. that was them. i read a profile of his reemergence. we got in touch. here we are. perhaps now he has a chance to matter in different ways.
i'm here neither to praise him or to bury him, but to present him in a hope that history will contribute to the presentation -- preservation of journalism that we all need and love. [applause] >> thank you. can you hear me? are we good? it is always nice to visit. there are few parts of the world that are so beautiful. when i was first approached about speaking at washington and lee, i was hesitant about reopening an old wound of m ine. i was convinced there were more lessons to be learned from my experience. i believe that of and could it
is the duty of all citizens to do all in their power to aid in the restoration of peace and harmony." i believe it is my duty, despite my new focus on psychological coaching, to do what i can to aid a journalism students by providing him guide it on how to avoid the rocky road. my intentions and my hope is that this will be myoblast public comment on journalism. reduce my last public comment on journalism. -- my intentions and my hope is that this will be the last public comment on journalism. i am at peace with the knowledge that there is no one or nothing to blame for my troubles but myself.
i have been accused of attempting to deflect blame for fabrication of plagiarism on the of the " new york times" protection of journalism, race, and a lot other people. those accusations are as big untruths as the lies idle. i am here because of the choices i made. it is in this choices that we find lessons to be learned. it is a very fine power to affect change. it has helped me appreciate the human condition. it has taught me learned how i went from being a person who pledged to comfort the afflicted and seek the truth into a man who left deep scars on his chosen profession. it may never make up for what happened, but it has the potential to help strengthen the
profession it wounded. i recognize i am but one of the voices. i realize that viewing my experience through a looking glass, it provides inspiration. "the deep parts of the minds are like a wound to the body. after the care has been taken to heal them, there will be a scar left behind." when a my favorite newspaper movies is the "the paper." it is by ron howard. it is a drama about a newspaper tabloid. it stars robert deval and michael keaton as the young workaholic. at the end, the editor in chief character is sitting in a bar with another.
he asks the their juridical question. his wife is pregnant pedipal. a guy break into an apartment. he has a gun. he says, i blew your wives bring in now. what do you say. what you think i say? it is ridiculous. he responds, that is exactly my point. it is never one big dramatic choice. it is little situations every day. you are either there are you are not. if you wait for the guide to the gun show up, it'll be too late. his character was divorced. all he had was the paper.
rarely are our choices in life prison it as a major dramatic question. if they were, and to be easy. if i could ask whether i want to destroy my career, a trash my profession, and under llie journalism, i would have declined. difficult choices really present themselves in one dramatic question or one big decision. instead, our most important choices present themselves and small baby steps. one step at a time that may not seem related to the ultimate outcome. one day, you can turn around and found herselyourself cross a liu never knew you would go near.
i see it in my own life as a journalist and other areas. one of the first questions students should ask me is about why i got into the profession. it they can have a hard time swallowing the notion that i got into the profession because i was curious and wanted to help people. my recent -- resent is not sound as noble as their own. it is hard for people to cross the idea that i once was so much like them. it is an important premise and looking at my career. if you buy the idea that i became a journalist for such a noble reasons and i crossed the line, you can believe that you can. recognizing that anyone under
the right circumstances of any thing is the first deatstep agat guarding against the evil. i have been interesting in writing as long as i can remember. i was interested in journalism as a high school students. i can still remember the stories in the "washington post" that propelled it to the profession. one was about the life and death of a student that have been my friend. i saw the heating power of journalism. one was about a class student who had been denied by health insurance. thousands of dollars were raised and the insurance company reversed the decision because of it. i began writing to the high school newspaper and spend the summer after my senior year and
a local community paper. i was taught by greekats. i had internships at the "washington times" and many others. this experience led to my being hired in 1998 as a summer intern at the "new york times buckle ." we were mentored by the best. we were expected the only one of us would be offered a position. in the end, the majority of us were selected to return. a few of those shows to pursue other options.
i enter the profession to help people and then became convinced that to help them i had to have the greatest impact on their lives. to have the greatest impact, i needed to work with one of the best newspapers. i became convinced that i needed to have the best stories to have the most impact. somewhere along the way, i've lost sight of the very reason that i entered journalism. once that was lost, i was a grievous -- anchorless and climbing aimlessly. no one came to my door with a gun and asked whether i wanted to shoot journalism. it was not simple. at the core, i am to blame for my choices. there are a number of profound and factors that contributed to creating an environment for my
ethical transgressions. we had the new editor who put a greater emphasis on speed and impact. i am sure this editor did not intentionally decide to sacrifice accuracy. he said that he believed the week to do things faster and more powerfully with the same amount of accuracy. the focus on speed and impact had a result to sacrifice some accuracies. it reallocated resources and left less time being devoted to the reporting of writing and editing of each story. this likely contributed to other problems. there is the battle fatigue at the times following the september 11 attacks. we were a mostly in the middle of a never ending marathon that taken 12 of their editors and reporters. i recall crossing the line that
time. once i did, it was a much easier to cross again. my personal struggles are not relevant to the questions. my recovery from a alcohol and drug abuse, while life changing in a positive way, with a harbinger leading the way for the into ted -- intensified presentation of mental-health system that added fuel to the fire that was initially ignited by my character flaws it burn brighter. one of the major problems is the focus is often more freely on the best practices when we can learn the most from the worst.
it sets firm boundaries and it teaches how good people do bad things. if premier the belief that only that people do bad things, been good people have no reason to learn that it is at all. i would like to address my feelings about the times. it is a wonderful newspaper. the editors came to my rescue on the day of my resignation. the major -- made sure i was getting the medical attention i need it. i am very grateful for them. thank you for listening. i think we are going to start the question and answers section. there are a number of topics. feel free to follow up and ask any question.
there is someone with a microphone. there we go. >> he talked about how you recognize the impact be made on in the journalism as a pill. -- you taught the how you recognize the impact he made on the field but not the individuals. what is your feelings toward them? >> from my perspective, it is the senate i've talked about much. the most painful part of it for me is the damage done to journalism. there is a recovery the had to occur.
the issues that shuttled with the most personally -- the issues that impact the muster will personally are ones you did not know about because they are my friends that felled the trade and like -- to question our friendship. then there are subjects of the stories i have not talked about. i think that -- one of the things the semi friends love, they love to make the point that the weapons of mass destruction -- it and treated to a war and all these bad things bil. i tell them the story of why i got into journalism.
it was to help and heal people. i ended up truly hurting them. i heard the subject and sources of the stories and people who read them and believed some parts of were not true. but is any time what you are falsifying the stories that you considered bet i am hurting people? >> no. it has little to do with a fund i was personally am. -- fog that i was personally am. when it cleared, it got me into a psychiatric hospital. a year or so later is when i started to deal with some of that. and maybe painful connections. -- i made the painful
connections. xd>> when you first wrote your first lie, were you aware of what you are doing? as a journalist, you are so passionate about what you read doing to help people. another part of journalism is pursuing the truth. were you conscious? >> in my notion of helping people was helping them through the truth. this kind of relevant to the question of journalism ethics. the point that i made about the emphasis being put on speed and impact post-9/11 burda there were a lot of changes. it is a news% that valued --
unused room that valued integrity above all else. [unintelligible] people were getting closer and closer to different kinds of ethical lines. i think collectively with in the newsroom, we all getting closer to that. by the time we were there, i had completely lost sight. i was climbing the ladder and i didn't even know why. the first time for me was a matter of expediency. it involved situations and the making up a last name for someone who not give a last name. when that line was crossed, it is that much easier. it is not to say that during
that time did not have moments where i was wondering what i was doing. was not a blur of madness. i would cross the line and tell myself i would never do that again. i had no accountability. i was unwilling to be honest with even my closest friends. i did not face whatever consequences were there. attlee's the month had accountability. my only accountability was myself -- i would at least have had accountability.
my only accountability was myself. >> you were acknowledging that you are lying to yourself. >> p.s. biyes. >> you mentioned that you are climbing the ladder. you did been very far career wise. -- you did advanced very far career wise. there were signals before your editor commented that you have not the bill all his expectations. why you think you were able to drive so fast despite the doubt? >> some has to do with internal stuff. i can only speculate about it. why one individual editor's warninghmiy have been ignored. there are different reasons.
i cannot really speculate about why the system broke down. i can tell you from being at the paper at the time the tension that was created by a new executive editor and sending the message that you are not good enough before i got here. you got to do it better,çó fastr and get them to get hit by the september 11 attacks. the section editors get replaced. [unintelligible] the communication was not good at that point. just like i talked about the notion that an unintentional ethical choice was emphasizing
speed over accuracy, it is the same thing with organization. we have accountability. when the structure is designed poorly, when it broke down and people decided not to pay attention to each other, they were not terribly making medical decisions, but they had ethical implications. i hope answers it. >> you must recognize that what you have done has caused particularly injuries to black
journalists. what can you do or say now to alleviate some of the harm? >> that is a good question. that harm has done by covered in, and the others had made. i cannot predict what i do what i do not do. this question is my role. when i was at the paper, i was an advocate for diversity and a ggender diversity. on one hand, as an advocate for diversity, i found myself wanting it both ways. when i ended up in trouble, i want to be able to say you cannot extrapolate.
i think it is unfortunate, because when you look at it, i think race played very little role in either my rise or my fault. the people who commented and said it did, not only are they uninformed, and they were not ever close to the situation more information. compare it to any other reporter that they hired around that age or any of my colleagues and mine were far above all of them. if you look at my fall, it has to do my personal things and not my race. to advocate along the lines you should not equate race to black journalists is buying into a false argument. it is a silly argument that is
not even worth in gauging and. the people that will run with that will not ever change their minds. >> i have a question for you. you use the term baby steps. how is it that you use the term baby steps to describe the decision you made to go to a coffee shop instead of getting on a plane and going to west virginia to interview the lynch's. how is that not nailing the gun? >> that was the running part. that was not the beginning. the baby steps started long before them. >> why did you recognize
that? >> it is not that i did not recognize the. why did i not stop? i do not know. if i were to answer -- this get into the part where to into this question, and then it says some of for the argument i making excuses. you can also look at the fact that i was in mitscher and i had this character flaws. all these things are -- i mr mmature and i had this character flaw. all these things are part of it. that is where i have a chance to change them. i do not see those as baby steps but their ethical decisions begin with baby steps.
we talked about the monica lewinsky story. if you get the ethical small steps the started in arkansas that led to that day, we know it starts with small things. yawping get a big choice, but by that time, you got so close to the line -- >> you do not recognize it as a big choice? >> it is interesting to put it that way. it is like erosion, slowly compromising year. you know it is a big deal just like the guy tv on his wife knows it is a big deal. but it all started when he started going to the strip club and the synthesized himself. it is that part. it is not that you do not
recognize it is a big choice. it is that you are desensitized to it. [inaudible] >> there are many points where i will up. i did not know what avenue to take. there were clearly moments where i realized, what am i doing? i need to stop. the fighting in the next step in restocked the number of people at the paper but rather to help me, it would have stopped. it is on me. i understand your point. sadly, it is what happened. >> was there any moment when you are sitting at a copy shop in
brooklyn and you saw a light you printed any thought about it? >> the whole coffee shop thing. it is more of being in my apartment. there is a time of literally a time frame of two months where i only love my farm in a handful of times. i literally did not leave. the book brought stuff over to me so i could survive. -- people brought step over to me so i could and ssurvive. i do now remember the paper that much or the stories. >> what will you thinking of yourself? >> it is not like i noticed when i did it the first time. for me, what i was thinking is
what i said before. i have to stop this. it is important to understand that there are a lot of different motives for why people lie and cross of the goal lines. and this particular case i view it as a combination of character flaws and the fact that because of my sickness, i was not able to do my job. a normal sick person says i am sick and i can i do my job. instead, i tried to force its and get the stories done anyway. in my case, that is what was going on. >> we are taught that it is a
good thing that journalists do not have a licensing board. given your situation, people might think maybe this is something that we needed to bourbon these kind of things. what is your response? >> i do not think licensing boards will help of the old problems. -- help ethical problems. >> you said you view your mistakes as a character flaw. did you view it as a character flaw then? did you like consistently in your daily life outside of your news stories? >> more than i do now. [laughter] it required lying outside. i did see it as a character fall. -- flaw. it fits with that pride, fear,
anxiety, and things that motivate them. i've studied reasons why people live. -- lie. i think there is a fundamental weakness that you see as you run to my stories. it is an unwillingness to admit weakness or ask for help. when you push yourself to the wall, and you'd do not say you need help, it has implications. >> i read an interview where you are quoted as saying he thought journalism was more about the relationship in connection to had and less about writing.
>> where did you read that? was it with the quotes around it? >> it was. but who? >> mike corona? he was the man who had interviewed the. it was at a small school. >> of the high school. >> you told him you got your internship at the boston globe because the associate dean had pretty much offered it to you. journalism is about who you know and not about the writing. >> i do not recall ever saying that. i will try not to comment directly on the story. journalism and vase networking and relationships. -- involve net arcane and relationships.
-- networking and relationships. does he have influence? yes. do they paid to you? yes. that is normal. >> did you ever take an ethics class? >> yes. >> we spoke of your immaturity. do you think the fact that you did not graduate from maryland, did that compound maturity? >> other than my own personal insecurity and my own self worth, but did not change terms of what journalism classes i checked the bil -- i had taken.
>> [unintelligible] everyone assumed to have finished your college? >> there were plenty of people who knew clearly, including the hiring managers. for a story about journalism ethics, you read the facts better out there, you will find factual inaccuracies. there are people who are making comment on things they clearly were not involved in. that is one of the issues. the editors who needed to know knew. i did not feel there is any ethical issue there. the editors who then replace this editors did not know about it. it is not my job to pass on information really, it is not.
you would expect there been normal communications and personnel files. >> from your perspective and experience, have you seen -- what is the prevalence of falsifying stories and of lying? >> i cannot speculate on that. >> do you see things where we have to worry about another jayson blair? >> this is obviously not a onetime case. we have had situation since them. when you -- i do not really know the answer. but i ask because be read the paper. outside what we think maybe kind of wrong, you have had experience in making things up. >> find a story that is written
about this event and what has been written about me. see if the combined a copied word for word summer. this is not enough on journalism. --a knock on journalism. a lot has to do with laws. do we have a problem of plagiarism? yes, we do. how much is in the mainstream media? i do not know. >> for a large part, you are an anomaly. that is what we are told. in the real world, are you an anomaly? >> i do not know. i cannot answer that question. do i know other people? >> yes. >> i do not know what is really going on right now. >> are the standard as strict as
we think they are? >> i do not know how stood you think they are. >> we are taught in your not to plagiarize anything. >> those are the standards. >> you got away with, is factual inaccuracies. >> i am probably not the best person to answer them. i have not paid such close attention that i give you an honest answer. i think some other cases the for themselves. >> you mentioned that some of your -- what you did was based on character flaws. do you think they are inherent? were they learned? where they learned? have you changed? >> i do not really know the
answer to that question for anyone. more importantly, it has been identified what they are and guarding against them, recognizing in myself -- going through something. i didn't know i was capable of doing something i did nothing those capable of doing. it has opened a door for me to examine myself in question all things about my behavior is and what i value in life. it has made me a much better person. i do not know where it originally came from. >> you said the one of the reasons you went astray was because fewer climbing the corporate ladder. was there a point when is studying about the quality of your writing?
-- when it stopped being about the quality of your writing? it became more about where you could go. >> it is more pavlovian for me. it is about delivering what they wanted. the audit did not want a fabricated. -- they obviously did not want it fabricated. >> the title of your talk is lessons learned. what lessons do you think the business has taken from your case and what lessons do you think it should have taken from her case? >> that is a good one. i think that's -- you are the one who said anomaly. my story is an anomaly in many
ways because of the largeness of the. it is not an anomaly in terms of the journalism in general. when we see something happening, we want to separate ourselves from it. it amazes me better at night. often we learn the most warmly but if the similarities that exists between us and people who do good things. i being that the lessons learned related to systems to get plagiarism, those were obvious. some of the more subtle ones
that do not fit within what is happening -- speed and accuracy had an unintentional impact. to suggest that the model for journalism is changing and becoming this web based, faster model, which is not a bad thing -- but to suggest it does not have some ethical implications seems a bit silly to me. the thing that people -- it is easier to walk a way with lessons of age are. reading hr -- to walk away with lessons of hr. >> you were talking about that it was easy to fall.
what makes it difficult for a but people here to understand is that the lies that he made our kind of going out of your way. it seems allying actively create a bigger web for you. i'm curious as to how you walked around the newsroom. >> i was not in the newsroom. but there was times, but i was rarely in the newsroom. >> did you ever talk to editors or other reporters that you were working with? >> yes. >> was there every time you talked about the stories were you had to remember the lies? >> journalism can be a "what have you done for me lately" business.
i think that' when you had been -- bradley -- whether you had a front-page story or not, they were always focus on the next story. in general, opposed 9/11, a lot of my colleagues were caught in that new york city after work. something changed. we spend a lot less time talking about our work. it goes back to the idea of not having accountability at that point. that would have been helpful for me. >> [inaudible] >> no. i will through you my
microphone. you are asking whether it would of been easy for me to have just been in the bill it photographer -- had just been there. a photographer called me to tell me he was there or near their. the day there. -- there are near there. [unintelligible] given how sick i was in the way i was sick, traveling was not going to happen. if i had tried to travel, it would not have happened. the one time i did try to travel, it was a disaster. it is not that the fabricating was easier than doing the actual work, it was that getting -- it was easier. i have two questions.
the first is, just from listening to you talk, it sounds like -- this sounds silly, but were you hoping to get caught? >> there was a pardon me that did not want to get caught. you can see that in the last few days. i was hiding everything they did not know about. they tip that's part -- they took that part of me, conceding
that i made mistakes. that was part of the sign. there were reports were no one had an inkling of it and i did not know that had an inkling of it. it had not filtered back up to me. i did want to get caught, but i would go back and forth. . . >> i think there is some truth to that. to suggest that it was just running and wanted to get caught -- it was more like getting caught in turning around and now i want to get caught. it was a little messier than the narratives we like. >> the next question is more serious.
to strip away the coverage that has been made and think about the legacy of the plan hundred 52 year legacy and the legacy of journalism -- do you feel -- there have been plenty of people who have had impacts on plagiarism. the way that it all happen, do you really truly feel the impact? -- impact on the trust and rippled across journalism? that is a key idea here. >> is a key point here. it is one of the papers that people look to for the truth. it was a hard road. i think it was also particularly a hard blow in many different ways.
i think i have a good understanding of the impact it had. what i believe it did was give people -- a lot of people who were distrustful of the media and continue to thbe -- it gave them an example to make the point that they wanted to believe or say when ever they disagreed or did not like a story. yes? it had a huge impact. >> this is actually a question i should ask somebody else, which is the first source you betrayed. some you just made up. many of these were real people. you said you had a great quote posted-9/11. if the person did not give their last name. you made up a last name. i would rather ask that person
but they are not here. why would they read what they said, read their first name, read another last name, in the "new york times" and not call them up? then you are getting away with it. we have been talking about editors and colleagues. what about the sources? >> i probably should not answer this question. since some of the people have givingiven me insight on why thy did not call, not everyone reads the times. we can start there. even when some people to see the coverage, things are wrong or mistakes are made. if they ran away and tried to
correct in all, that is what they would spend their time doing. what these people say to me is, in the figure i got it wrong or i screwed it up. it was an honest mistake or something like that. they put it in that context. i should not answer that question. i told you. >> [inaudible] [no microphone] >> that is true. there is no reason you should be compelled to believe anything. that is your choice. i would tell you to do what i do and the same thing i encourage everyone in my life to
do, which is -- you listen to what people have to say. you compare it to the backs -- facts that you know. make sure that they are facts. you collect information. you make the determination about the credibility. >> that is a good response. you talked about? -- you talked about facts. >> you are welcome to come to my office. when you come in, i listened to them to determine if they are lying. i collect information. i check it against facts. i make a judgment about whether it is credible. i ask them whether they are lying. it is the same thing when you listen to anyone.
you listen to what they have to say. you listen to the collateral information. he make some determination about whether you find it credible. i and is offering this. -- i am just offering this. i am not trying to convince you. >> i will go back to covering the world from your apartment. from today's perspective, talk about the culture of the "new york times." you should have been turning in at a minimum your expense accounts. your aug. not paid that much. >> -- you were obviously not paid that much. >> it is a matter of the particular time, not the newspaper, the actual time. people have been on an extended
time. incentives were not getting turned in. >> that is an indication of a culture. for you to speak in the broader sense. >> what? >> a sign of black culture. 0 -- a sign of lax culture. >> there was a standard policy that said you have to have your expenses. certain bureaus did have to have that. if you are trying to get a more general question -- what not that at all. -- >> not bad at all. what lessons have you learned that could be shared as a lot of these folks are going into the corporate world?
>> i am not qualified to answer that question. it is hard. i do not think i can really answer that one. i understand where you are going. i do not think i necessarily have the knowledge to answer. >> i was curious as to whether or not, what you are writing these stories, you are proud of yourself? >> no. >> you are conscious of it. >> correct. >> it is hard for me to understand why you kept doing it. >> i was an alcoholic a bum picking up a drink. >> ok. >> if you had some advice for a newsroom managers who was looking for those first baby steps, could you give her or him
some advice? >> -- to find a journalist who may be going astray? >> one of the difficult things when it comes to journalism is that ultimately it is based heavily on trust. i think applying just a little of the same skepticism that we apply to every politician -- find that same skepticism and really question things and see if they line up. . .
>> profoundly because of what i was doing and getting away with. there was a part of me that thought that i would be caught. that is part of a psychological thing. this fear that you will be caught keeps you from getting close to the line. once that fear disappears, it becomes easier to get there. you will hear similar things from people that have been written about. it becomes harder to trust reporting because of the mistakes that do get made that you can see. i have progressed to the point where i can read a newspaper and enjoy it and put that camsame kd
of skepticism. >> are you in contact with people in the newsrooms? >> yes. an initially afterwards, there were one or 80 of my former colleagues in touch with me. i would say it is somewhere around two dozen. -- there were one or two of my former colleagues. one of the common things that you will see, even some that are still out "the times," is that many of them share something with me personally in the sense
that they have been through something in their life where they have made an enormous mistake parent of the public might not know about that mistake. -- they have made an enormous mistake. the public might know about that mistake. >> did you ever try to make it right about those people that you lied to and about? >> yes. >> can you talk about that? >> nope. those are private conversations and they should stay private. >> and they were not private, that happened in the public. >> let's put it this way, i have been in touch with some of the people that i have written about and i made apologies to them that the mechanics uses.
-- that don't make any excuses. >> these are private conversations. whether they reached out to me, or i reached out to them, they allowed me into some private aspect of their lives and i should not drive them into this mess in a public way. >> thank you. >> you're welcome. >> i want to talk about the dead. you having a second career. i would like to know where did you get the credentials aside from your experiences to give psychiatric help to anyone? -- i want to talk about today. >> i don't give psychiatric help. i am a life coach.
in my role, i focus on mental health and i intend to work with -- when i work with people that have serious mental illnesses like by puller, depression, schizophrenia, i am and adjoint team member. -- i am an adjunct team member. i am working on triggers, mitigating symptoms, helping them communicate better with their treatment providers. i also assist people individually on my own who don't have serious mental illnesses with issues like motivation. >> you are making all of that up. you have no credentials to do that. you are doing it from your life experiences but yom#r r@ @ @ @
where those character flaws seem like they are gone. there are areas where i clearly can identify in my mind. i can identify character flaws that still exist today. one of the big differences that i am much more open with people that i work with and family members and friends about what my flaws are and that tells me to set boundaries. these are areas that i will not get near. here is where i am doing for a while and i can help people learn from my experience.
>> [inaudible] >> it does not. the experience of flying does not qualify you to do anything. -- lying does not qualify you to do anything. for you, the most significant amount of my life will be what happened in journalism. my struggle with bipolar disorder has been much more personally painful and difficult. i have had to learn much more from that than my experience in journalism. for you, on the outside, the narrative for you is the scandal of the times. that does not mean that this is the biggest valuable our experience in my life.
>> i have a quick question. do you have to prove yourself every day to everyone that you talked to and meet that you are telling the truth? >> i don't think so. it surprises me a bit of that i don't have to. i tend to be open with people about my background. i tend to share. i share relevant over you. usually the respons-- overview. usually when i'm dealing with someone who is not a journalist, it tends to actually help humanize them for me or humanized me for them. i think that we're able to develop through me confessing
that i am not this sort of perfect whatever who does not make mistakes and i have made enormous mistakes that are costly and painful. i think it helps develop a more on this connection that that kind of honesty goes beyond just the question of truth and not trees. -- i think it helps to develop a more honest connection and that kind of honesty goes beyond just the question of truth or not the truth. they know i can for gift because i can forgive myself. -- for givgive because i can forgive myself. >> why should anyone trust you? >> it is up to individuals to make determinations on her own. people have to decide what they are willing to believe or not.
what do you think about them? how would you compare the way the media treated you and how they treated them? >> it is hard for me to say because my view of that coverage is absolutely distorted. it is distorted because i am personally invested. you could say, yes, i thought that the coverage of washington lee was decent or good. always, whenever you are involved in a story, it throws off my sensitive meter. in terms of stephen glass, jack kelley, knowing the store is on the outside and not knowing details, i think that there are
a lot of lessons that can be learned that are slightly different. some are similar. i don't really have any personal insight on why they did what they did. i have speculation based on what i've read. i probably -- if i'm asking for people to listen to me give my version of events and give me a chance, i should not analyze the motives of others who live not talked to. >> how would you compare the media handling of them? >> i don't remember the coverage as well. i thought that my story because the times was writing the big story, it took on a completely
different character than i think some of the later coverage. in looking at the jack kelly story, from my perspective, a lot of my own questions about why it happened never really got answered. i don't even know if there are answers available. >> [inaudible] in did you ever appreciate that fact? and did you ever enjoy your job? >> yes, yes. >> you said that you are in a fog. >> yes, that is true. there was a point or a loved and
enjoyed being in the times. -- there was a point where i love d. >> was a release the writi it re writing? >> yes. >> was there a hole in the fact checking process that you were aware of that allow you to deceive the public for so long? >> i don't think it was other than this function. there is general this function. "the times," has many layers of fact checking.
at the very least, one or two extra fact checking. >> how did you get around this? >> it happened because i think that we were stretched at that point. i don't think it could have gone as long if we had not been as stretched and people have not been as fatigue as they were. >> some of the fabrications you could have made up to help people and tel. did it ever occur to you?
>> the bell rings, that is my job. i was not as directed as it would take in to have some crusading thing. >> after all of this e-mail, did any other to list continue and confide in new that they had done the same things? >> i don't want to answer the question. that would have been a personal conversation. >> jason, thank you. i did say that we would give the
for these guys, usually they are fighting for the dude next to them and all that, that small camaraderie that really motivates them where professionalism doesn't explain everything, so i'm not sure morale is a huge issue, and it's impossible to generalize a whole army when it comes to mohr rafment you can sit down with one soldier and say are you ok? is your morale snige and he may have particular gripes and the army is really actually good with dealing with those, the army is make ang effort to expand in order to give folks more time at home. i always hear. for years i've heard the army
is fraying and overstretched. from a planning pickups that might be true that we don't have enough troops to do what went but it's not like the army's imploding and where folks are so demoralized that they are just going to quit. >> we have debate about the weather and how many additional troops we may send. what's your idea about sending more troops? and what is needed there. >> well there's a growing sense of realism that nobody's going to get everything they want. mccrystal sets a high bar for what he considers adequate resources. what's the number he's throwing around? 40,000 troops or more? i think there's an understanding that that's not necessarily going to happen and if it does, it's not going to
happen fast. so they are finding ways to make do with fewer troops. a lot of senior guys embrace the population insurgence as i where your goal is to protect the entire afghan community from any extremists and by protecting them you win over them and you -- them, so it's ip possible. so a hybrid strategy is emerging where you protect major population sthers and try to win hearts and minds through indirect means outside of those major population centers. >> last time you were in afghanistan was what year? >> 2007. >> how have things changed? >> there's really no major progress to report. the challenges i saw in 2007 are the challenges i saw in 2009.
there are slightly more u.s. and coalition troops in afghanistan, but not so many that it's made massive difference. it might make a difference in certain localities where there have been big troop increases. but broadly speaking, it's still a huge country and coalition is still comparatively quite small, and the major obstacles remain, the thing is i'm not sure -- unless you want to flood afghanistan with aal million foreign troops, i'm not sure that troops are really the answer. it's increasingly clear to me having visited the country twice that more than the taliban, the enemy is corruption. the enemy is an afghan government that's had a chance to pull its acting together and has declined to do so repeatedly. it seems most senior afghan
officials, actually most senior or not, just want to get rich. just want to gather power for themselves and don't care about afghanistan as a state and certainly don't care about their constituents. so you can kill taliban all day, you're just going to end up creating more by creating martyrs. you can't win this war by the definition of war that we've sort of settled on. until there's an afghan got to the that takes governance seriously. and that's just not happening. >> you shot a lot of video for c-span. what was the most interesting thing you saw? >> getting blown up. shot at. >> tell us about that. >> we were ambushed on the way back from a visit to local mosques, and there was a 204
minute fight. no casualties. a truck was destroyed but it protected the occupants. it was an interesting experience because i've been shot at before. and i guess over throughout those experiences, i've come to really believe in american technology. i'm actually sad that i feel this way. i don't want to be the guy who feels invincible when he's wrapped in millions of dollars of american military equipment. but do i. it's good equipment. so we sat there and absorbed a bunch of taliban bullets and everybody was fine and then we shot back. and that tree line that those taliban were shooting from was just demolished. >> about how far away was it from your position? >> it was pitch black, so i would have to guess 100 yards. probably farther.
and the sheer quantity of firepower that they dropped on that tree line was just hilarious and awe-inspiring. massive overkill. and we killed a cow. which is bad you don't want to kill a cow in afghanistan. farmers get very upset. >> how were you able to remain calm and -- >> well, the video isn't great because the only way to shoot video is to pop out the hatch. but they were useing the hatch to fair to grenades so the hatch was occupied so i was only able to shoot inside. hotes and eye were their names. it was tough because i didn't want to shine a light in their face. and i didn't want to ruin their night vision or just bug them because that he had job to do, so i was only able to getly snippets of video of them going about their job, killing
taliban, which is something they don't do often anding is they realize is not really their job. >> did you get a chance to talk to them after the fair to fight? >> sure. >> and what was your impression of how they were after that? was it business as usual? >> yeah. they've all done this before. hotes, the young man named matt hotes who was in the back of the truck with me. great guy. and he -- i ran into him at lunch a few days later, and we just started to talk about the fair to fight. it was an unusually long fair to fight. taliban don't usually hang around that long. but they just kept shooting this time and hotes talked about his mindset when he's in a situation like that. he said the key to surviving, ironically is to not care about surviving. if you think too hard about protecting yourself, then you don't take the steps that you know you need take to resolve
the situation as fast as possible. in other words, as soon as they can get out of the vehicles, they get out of the vehicles, and they gain some high ground and look around at the enemy, and then they call in artillery and mortars and fair to their own grenades dow, but that sort of requires getting out of the vehicle and bullets snapping around you. but in the end it's safer to get out and take care of the problem than hunker down and let them shoot at you. so he talked about how you survive by embracing death. and he and his unit are lucky. they haven't taken a lot of casualties. and one of the reasons is is because they fight so bravely, and they are willing to confront death like that. >> and you mentioned their training earlier. do you really see that in action in that sort of situation? >> yes. an 18-year-old kid who within seconds of getting blown up and then peppered with gunfire is
calling in artillery and coordinateing the movements of troops all over the place is fair toing his own we were and dealing with a pesky little reporter who is shineing a light in his face all at the same time while i don't know maintaining a pretty pleasant attitude throughout is extremely impressive. >> before we wrap it up, tell us about the mechanics of your job. how do you make sure you have enough tapes and your battery is charged and all that? >> well, i didn't spend a whole lot of time sleeping outdoors in the desert. in brocky brocky where the ambush took place every night we return home to a quite nice base and had a sergeant who was responsible for building the huts and getting power and did a really good job. really cared about his guys.
so yeah i could plug things in at night. recharge them, and it's expensive work. extremely expensive work, flying over there and miscellaneous expenses that you acall late, and it's not always easy and comfortable, but the it sure beats embedding with the taliban. because at least as an american, i'm probably gonna make it through. >> david ax, thanks for your work and thanks for joining us. >> my pleasure. david ax has covered the war in iraq and sudan. you can watch programs launched with his material and this interview at our website. c-span.org. go to the search box in the upper right-hand corner. go to the search box and type in axe. >> today on "washington
journal" a drop in climate change and joblessness among young look men with university professor harold holzer and robert picks by -- robert bixby talks about employment and steven emerson. >> american icons, three nights or c-span original documentaries of the iconic homes of the three branches of american government continues. tonight at 8:00 p.m., the capitol. the history, art and architecture of one of america's most symbolic structures. american icons tonight on c-span and get your own copy of american icons. it's $24. 5 plus shipping and handling order online.
>> former deputy secretary of defense paul wolfowitz talked about the changes in global strategy after the fall of the berlin with a and responded to questions from members of the audience, this was hosted by the miller center for public affairs at the university of virginia. this is an hour and 45 minutes. >> we have a wonderful lineup here. it's a pleasure and honor to have three policy makers and superb analysts on foreign policy all on one panel and each has sebbed indeed two of the three presidencies between the fall of the berlin with a and the o'bpaaa administration and have worked -- as people we can learn something about the experience of making strategy and the complex position the country has faced in the past
20 years. these gentlemen are them so let me briefly introduce the panel, 'em as it relates to the aftermath of 9/11 and strategy of uncertainty. how do these people relate to this theme? mostly as a career foreign service service related to the fall of the berlin wall he worked in the u.s. ambassador in moscow from 1987 to 19 9 and then undersecretary of defense for soviet and east european affairs from 19 9 to 1993. then he was the deputy assistant to richard cheney for national security affairs from 2001-2003 then ambassador of turkey to 2003-2005. and he was u.s. undersecretary of defense for policy from 2005-twipe. he is currently a distinguished fellow at the center for
strategic and budgetary assessments working on strategy and alliance issues. walter sloke you mean who has extensive experience in government takeover past 40 years brings experience dealing with the national environment created by the fall of the wall of the class of the soviet union. he was under the secretary of policy in the clinton administration and served after 9/11 as as the senior advisor for national defense and coalition for authority in iraq in 2003. 2004 the l george w. bush apointed him to a position and currently a lawyer with the washington firm of kaplan and drysdale. finally a player from the hope team, film a professor of history at u. vpt a. and both a stellar scholar and accomplished policy maker. let me just mention a few facts
relevant to today's pan. he served under the george h.w. bush administration and along with condoleezza rice co-authored one of the studies of the falls of the wall and the its aftermath. later he had a hand on drafting the final -- producing arguably the most influential report in history and undo itedly the most readable. he was with the council of state. i'm jeff a professor here at uva and a fellow here at the miller center and try to ride herd on the heels of these gentlemen which will be no easy task. please turn off your cell phones. feen they are on vibrate they disrupt room.
i'll make a few comments and then we'll open it up for q and a and discussion. >> first i'm going to lead by example by turning off my blackberry. >> thank you. >> jeff, thank you and to mel and stevens and family for the responsibility for organizing this conference and giving me an opportunity to take a subject and exercise a part of my brain that i thought i'd left behind when hi left the academy and joined the foreign as far as as the first foreign service officers after the hostages were received in the faw of 1979, and i have the -- i guess the benefit or maybe burden, i'm not sure which, of having served in all three administrations. both bush 41 and clinton administration where i worked briefly-for-wallet then where i
worked briefly for walt and then with phillip on a number of issues. so i'm pleased to be on this panel with both of them i chose to focus on a narrow subject, which is what paul wolfowitz called earlier today the infamous planning guidance. they are there with years between woors between 11/9 and 9/11 used to describe it well. if you google it you will come up with something like 90,000 hits and the only other national security document that even comes close is nc 6. although this morning it was not strictly speaking a defense document sints it was awe authored in the -- mel leffler describes in his book,
practically had a stroke and at least initially did not like to qud of transforming his budget on short notice. >> and the francis fitzgerald in the new york review of books said it was a minority view and bush 41 became the do informant view and bush 43. and suggested that it was not only suggested by her but others said this was an torte sketch out what some called a global denomination and for the dwrithes act like global cop. and that somehow you can draw a straight line between the 199 planning guidance and the bush doctrine. and the evidence of the national security passage on the note of creating wmd treats
. if you look through it and any number of scolers scr picked this up as well. including joan wilson in which he contribute it is stopping of the first gulf war with the liberation offense can you wait rather going back to baghdad and getting rid of saddam. and a new national defense policy called the defense plan and guidance. and other critics have joined that as well. and the only narrative way that has found its way into the public ge debate is that it destroy it is drafting and for much greater influence are the authors of that document than is warrantied. so what explains that in the
first instance? well, first, the dpg was -- and it's now possible, by the way, i think to have a more dispassionate discussion of this. because many documents have been declassified and are available on the national security archive website. the dpg was leaked in the first instance in march. in march of 1992. and it was, i think, arguably from the context of the leak, not leaked by someone who was sympathetic to the document, because it was given to pat tyler of "the new york times." and he wrote about it in a way that suggested for ways to by our other allies and that the pentagon document is a
quotation from the new york times article of 1992 -- and that first news story set the tone for all future discussion of the document. over the course of a couple of days, tyler and bart gelman of "the washington post" wrote about the document, although at that time, neither paul wolfowitz, nor scooter libby under whose charge this was being documented. and read the document and it came out immediately in the midst of a 1992 presidential captain so he went to political figures to get reactions. pat buchanan said it was a virtual wall blind check. it seems odd for a document
that was supposedly so unilateral and politics make strange bedfellows and ha -- it reversed to an old notion of the united states as the world's policeman and suggested the united states pursue the next advancement of civilization. george step nop louse speaking for then bill clinton argued they were hoe deep spending cuts. and alan trance tone -- they wanted to make sure the united states was the only main hoverageo on the world block, the global big enchilada. the following day tyler report that had bureaucratic tribal war fare had broken out. i'm shocked. say that senior white house and state department officials have harshly criticizeed the draft pentagon policy statement and one administration official was
quoted as that in no way or shape represents u.s. policy. and lost in the swirl of all this was the very sinch fact that pete williams, the spokesman, pointed out or even very widely in the government, a lot of people are making comments about a document they never actually read. >> and bart gelman tried do a better job of seting the document in some context. but by and large first impressions are very hard to chape. hard to shape. and i think looking to what is striking about the press coverage is it was a very tipalical washington story, which reflected a lot of the sort of not invented here syndrome that goes on bureaucratically and where
critics did not put forward any sort of strategy at all but just chose to comment harshly about a dew point that most of them hadn't read and was still in the preparatory stages so to go back to the document at this time origins of the dpd go back to some of the elements paul wolfowitz talks about this morning in the fall of 19 9 secretary cheney secretary cheney -- so george steff nop louse -- george step nop louse at the time it was and among cheney's and scooter libby's direction. truth in advertising i've been eyea accused to have been one of the authorize in the studies
and that's only true in a very technical sense. i was responsible for drafting one section which was the section on the soviet union and central and eastern europe, and if one looks at the documents, you'll see any number of memoryos to scooter to, paul from dale vesser saying gee, the documents not quite complete yet, because the soviet section is -- and the process of drafting began of the document per se in june of 1991, and a couple of things happened between june of 1991 and march of 1992 when the document leaked and most important being that the soviet union broke up which seems like a fact we probably ought to take into account. but scooter and his colleagues went back and looked at the
drafting of nfc 68 and eisenhower and in squan of 1990 there had been a guidance that forsaw a reduced conventional sothe threat and toward emergence of regional threats, this was to be a strategy and base for structure. that resulted from a lot of work scooter did for others, and it was provided by cheney-bush and bush said this is great idea. i need to give this in a speech. so the speech was to be give engine aspen colorado unfortunately the speech which was give than day you can find in the bush library got cop meetly lost in the noise of saddam's invacation of can you wait and in their memoir,
president bush and another mention the speech in aspen but never actually talk about the subject nor do secretary baker or another >> what produced was -- the important part, the united states would be ill served by forces that represent nothing more than a scaled back or shrunken down version of the forces we present right now. equally cut across the board we could easily end up with contingencies and less than we might need for emerging challenges. and then he summarizeed the defense plan as follows -- we want to have a frame work to guide our deliberate reductions to no more than the forces we need. went forces to be able to
exercise in key areas. to retain the forces to rebuild and then president bush talked about a defense strategic return. i think the major departure in henderson's peach and recruiting bay the basis on which further refinements and the gpd would be built. the document itself, i think the documents that have been released made clear, starting with the documents born in june, 1991 that the gpd was grounded but wowed build on the lessons from the gulf war.
and scooter was at that time leading a national study on the conduct of the gulf war in which lessons particularly with the guarded or guysed -- the military affairs are something professor west talked about a little bit today initial draft of course, was based on the end of the soviet empire in europe and decline of the conventional threat but now events were threatening to outpace our ability to draft a document and it and we were now looking at the prospect of a rushing -- russia. let me briefly outline what was in the document, say a few things that were added. up with was -- paul talked about anchoring u.s. leadership
within our trying to make sure that we could extend the system to have one out later drafts extending the zone of peace. there's a myth i think that the revised draft was an attempt to walk back from some of the earlier statement that is came out in the leaked versions but if you compare the versions the document becomes stronger over time rather than weaker and was publicly released in a redacted version in january of 1993 at which time it was barely noticed in the press. what was the significance of the document of paul hags talked a little bit and why was the bureaucratic reaction so negative? paul talked a little bit about the differences over ukraine this morning. i think that was actually a very important point. if you read secretary baker's
memoirs you find he was completely angry about the a leak in the fall of 1991 about interagency differences in the ukraine. he said i was feeling sand bagged not by cheney but by those who had been the initial source and there was no question it was it was women won the following story and was first leaked. >> the other part that i think was important was as a number of scholars pointed out the rise of the vulcans and david calahan, this was one of the few efforts to step back and take a really long look. and george hairing in his imagine starle history of foreign policy argues the same thing. how does the gpd hand up and whest i first, on the national
security strategy, i'll let film speak to that with more detail as he does in his paper. my recollection was that that was largely an effort driven by condi rice and pen on the issue. and both the office of the vice president and the office of the secretary of defense did not have a decisive influence. there is some discussion that the quote muscular idealism in the september, 2002 document was a complete manifestation. in fact the the nsf is a different document -- when one thinks about what has been
written or what is being written at awe about back to the future, europe becoming a dangerous mutt polar place frp insecurities. in the end i think the dpg stands up pretty well. it started to -- and to extend on the basis of building on our alliance structures rather than -- as they move forward on -- and the episode itself is well worth, because i think it indicates some of the difficulties people have when today try and engage in this kind of thing in 4 the current environment we have where the press is a sort or ubiquitous
process and it makes it extremely challenge to even examples as suggested are best done by smaw groups of people. finally one thing that has occurred to me as i've done this study has been we now face -- and i put this on the agenda for the scholars in the audience. we now face a circumstance in which the apt of material generated the eable to conduct research. mel's book on the trueman administration benefitted from an enormous -- particularly the planning of the joint chiefs of staff record group 216 or -- 218, and did a prediligentous
piece of, before told me that the emails of the bush 43 administration have now been exsessioned by the national security it's. and there had been a billion of them. how scholars are going to wrap therapy minds around the literally millions of pages of documents now is i think a very big challenge that people are going to have to face. and whether people are going to need to dive deeply. we're going to have to have a scholarly edition where some try in thin and others well, inin spite of the introduction, which emphasized my war work on
the war in iraq and -- i am a democrat. and i served in both the carter and clinton administrations. so i'm glad so that paul wolfowitz isn't the only one to say something nice about hoe one of my mentors in the launch and motorsports picture hangs in the wall. >> in the presence of leadership of an organization that i'm at least as proud to have worked for as the department of defense. i want to take away, sort of like erik, i want to take a particular case rather than to try to serve a whole history of the clinton administration. >> and that's the relationship with russia. because the clinton
administration came to office at a special time in american history. because of the profound change in the soviet union and indeed other changes. people have mentioned that the the profound change with the eend of apartheid which was coming in south africa and a variety of other things. and central to this, to the administration was the question of russia. because i think in general, the administration came into office thinking foreign policy -- although important -- would be a secondary consideration. but i think they also saw that there was an opportunity. and one of the themes of the paper that i've done is that sometimes crises of the
opportunity are more difficult to deal with than the crises of challenge. 34 of you have probably been exposed to these talents. if you look at the way people make money or choices, they are most interest d n preserving preserving as well. but it was clearly a recognition she's the -- the foreign challenge the administration would face, and that it was very much in the united states' sfwroast try to sthape future. the objectivity was russia that would be internally democratic, economically successful and likely to be internationally instructive. critically, as a means to that end. clinton administration and particularly the chief advise
other? the newly-elected president of the russian federation is the last hope for my friend who transitions today. >> and throughout the eight years, terms. no foreign policy agent had higher variety when it comes to creating the -- that the united states hoped to create. it was not that people had illusions about the challenges internally in russia that yeltsen faced or indeed the ones the president faced. one of the surprising tidbits of this is that richard nilson worked several months at one point he went to see stro talbot and said yeltsen may be
a drunk but he's the best we're like throwing get out of that screwed up country. we have to preenlt him from becoming our enemy and or prevent someone else from being our friend or enemy. >> he did a lot of specific things, more money for economic which requires refocusing from economics to political considerations. and it appears that clinton, who was a very successful politician, had a lot better -- had a lot of sympathy for another poll tissue's -- anyway, we were talking about chechnya one of the issues in which the administration and clearly pulled its punches.
and he said, you know, if we had a situation anything like chechnya in the united states 679 we might be tempted to do the kind of things yeltsen is doing and i understand why he has to act the way it is to >> but the problems build up pretty quickly. the opposition in russia turned out to be more deeply -- than those including yelingtsen taught. and attempts failed to produce results in the economy, society or to produce the kind of political base that would have at least to some degree given them a protection against the opposition. and so there were a lot of problems. i think part of it is an exemplification of the point that this was made in the
previous session, but single priority strategies are sell dom workable. first of all, there's a real problem about the nature of priorities. a top priority to i don't know defending the gap doesn't mean that before you'd gotten 100% confidence -- it's a question of relative balance. and the administration quickly realized that there were a lot of other issues that had to be addressed. bosnia was one. the russians for a provide of reasons were massively unsupportive. didn't make a difference because far while the british and french were also un1u79ive and when they were prepared to take stronger action, one of the the russians in fact were not terribly vigorous in their
opposition and in fact persuaded said military dwruents participate in the nato-led intervention force. but the -- and there were very complicated issues about the relation of the russian forces to the nato command. and that issue brought to the floor the issue of nato enlargement, which we've talked abouter requestier. and there was no question by 1994, say -- that there was very strong pressure in central and eastern europe. very strong desire join the alliance. that this was probably going to happen. and the russians were adamantly opposed for a variety of reasons. and one of the biggest challenges was to so manage the relationship with russia that it was possible to go forward with an enlargement without an open break with moscow, and by
and large that was a success. but it was an irritant in relations with russia. think there's a very strong case for the strategy pursuing both nato enlargement in cooperation with russia. but that didn't make it an easy task. the situation got worse with kosovo wherein the russians at least went through the form of claiming that they were going to back theer is s. a critical diplomatic is, which was largely atributable to strow talbot personally, was getting the russianens mostly through the influence of him. but they were not going to pull his chestnuts out of the fair to, at that point with the culmination of a sustained goming campaign and the real property of gun -- and so there
were some successes. russia withdrew its croops no the significance of that is i will trait straighted by the problem of middle dovea which is the only place they didn't withdraw and some places in the caucuses. but getting the russians to make the withdrawals that they were implicit in the dismantlaling of the warsaw pact. second and paul wolfowitz mentioned this this morning was eliminating the nuclear weapons that were left behind by the soviet union. it was also an important achievement and getting the reluctant and limited but real cooperation on ball kin settlements and the nato
enlargement. but in terms of restructuring russia, yeltsen, i think it has to be said, was not in any sense successful. and the russia that you see today may resemi-ible -- it's not stahlen or to brezz nan -- probably hoped the create which is the kgb model of a modern, moreless effective russia. and so what went wrong? what were the problems? i think first of all, the administration, like yeltsen and the russian performers simply underestimateed the magnitude of the task. 70 years of communism had a much more profound effect on russia than it had in the shorter period with iraq. second, i think there was an
overstiverages to the degree in which anything done by the outside world was going to have an impact in russia. aened i'll summarize so i don't get hook too soon. third, the vision of a full-scale u.s.-russia partnership even in international affairs i think was too optimistic and it neglected the fact that there were real conflicting values. and finally, while i don't think it was any choice, yelingtsen proved to be a weak read in the process. and probably it is no -- not better summarized than by yeltsen himself, in the speech i handing over of power to poop on the day that the millennium turned. he said i ask your foregiveness for the dreams we have shared but that never came true. >> he had a good speech writer.
>> for the fact that what seemed simple turned out to be torturously difficult. i ask for your foregiveness for not justifying the hope that we could in one fell swoop, lead from a totalitarian future. it turned out i was naive about so things. the problems were more comp -- >> thank you, very much. phillip? >> the conference is about strategic planning, and in these great moments of world history, and as jeff mentioned, i had a ringside seat in brief moment ins a couple of these episodes. but it is important to want avoid the temptation that one described when after reading churchill's memoir, the first,
the viewer commented that winston has written so a memoir after a style that was a history of the world. >> but on the issue of strategic planning, perhaps a couple of insights can be gained from looking at these two great periods of fluid change in 1989, 1990 and 2001-2002. what do we mean by strategic planning? readiness. intellectual and institutional readiness. and the great contrast then in my overarching pieces is the -- in the first case, strategic planning benefitted because we were adapting existing beliefs and institutions.
adapting them in, i think, a risky and innovate way in many cases but the ability to adapt existing institutions and beliefs. in the second case in 2001-2002 i think is a mixture of some successes and some flures. but it is also sometimes desperate improvization and prevention. rapidly trying to develop beliefs about new types of problems and capabilities. and improvise institutions are there were things that were quite unfamiliar -- now let me dig a little bit deeper into these two periods and try break them down. in the first period, the period of the bush 41 i think it would
be good break it down into three parts, the first part let's just call 1989 because from january to august of 1989, this is a period in which the united states creap to the great events occuring in central and eastern europe or in china important, but not central. a memoir accounting in the spring of 19 9 is not a history of the world. i have an essay in the current issue of "foreign affairs" that says a little bit more about my argument and what happened between forpe more ar story of european history or east asian history than it is a story of
american history or even a story of u.s.-soviet relations. that there is a hinge period i describe determining, central determining the outcome for the swing states in this momentous nerd american politics which then place out because even though we're important and not central in the developments of europe, it's decisive planning. my oorget is that the period before the opening of the berlin wall was actually the period of decisive strategic planning for what happened actly after the berlin wall. and one way to notice when periods of strategic planning occur is judge to when it
dwoppeds develops. it's habits of thought and action. and then begins to believe in those habits so that those habits thore -- and the paper says something about the significance of the may, 1989 nato summit and all the surrounding events and some other developments during that period, and ticks off eight or nine different ways in which that period really cemented habits of thought in action that were going to make it much-year-old for them to adapt when all of a sudden the car accelerated and then they simply began more rapid throwing deploy goals thing -- phase of the bush 41 period is let's call this 1990 though it
really begins in about august of 1989. the period of critical american actions -- the focus really shifts a lot beginning in august of 1989 and the developments in pole and and then the picture and by october we're going full blast on german issues before the wall opens. and a lot of ideas are already being developed including in west germany. at this point the stust central. it's not dominant. it's not dominant actor but a central lector and will remain a central let the record reflect drumen case and all the issues the history is well known. but just take the poland case
which is much less studied and much less understood. so here is poland and what's the role making that look successful? what's the development of the shock therapy program that is the dissitesive experiment of this new democracy? up to create political economy which is fo -- the americans basically helped work with the government headed by -- to develop a resip areical set of bargains in which the americans helped mobileize the community with the creation of the g-24, even the creation of the european bank which finally found a safe place to stick stuff so, that's a very interesting phase of history in which the u.s. role is central. but a lot of the plans that are
being pursued there actually draw on an intellectual basis -- there are two other observe vagus i want to make about the 1990 period and the second observation is one key reason why the americans are successful, relatively successful during this t -- he has a recent book in which he really stress it is fans the significance in which they believe they have a -- the beliefs in which they have the viable alternative may be right or wrong but it's important that they think there's a vieible alternativety usually
people just look at a situation and see needs and problems. and they don't really analyze the policy alternatives seen as is a decisive college factor. the u.s. add explain a lot and so an and so on and help make that look viable to the east german people voting in march, 1990. to a lot of difrpbl audiences. we conjured up a scenario that looked like a viable alternative that you could go ahead and steer for. and the challenge on the other side is do you have an alternative that's equally and the incredible taste of time and momentum we're helpinging to founder and the third one,
which i think will he come back to do later this afternoon is the approach. because it seems to rely on existing institutions so much it seems a little ho hum like we're just going to roll downhill into this stuff that's already there. i don't want to go into a lengthy excursion but successful nice it to say that was not the way it was purr received at that time but mainly it was short-term risks that the whole train will derail with the hope that you were going for an out time that would give you much greater long-term safety because you end up getting into a safe harbor that you knew even though journey into that channel would be very difficult and then let me close with the comment in the 1991 period, which is the 1991 period i think is less successful in strategic planning, because especially as the issues arise
of self determination in the soviet union and yugoslavia, the bush administration does not have a massive -- master script and built to handle all those problems and doesn't quite know what to do and it shows in a variety of different ways. so you see -- i think some degradation in the policy of 1991 and 1992 offset by the fact that the agenda bob zoellick was talking about last night. plus some middle eastern things. let me now turn to phase two, which is the period of 2001-2002. my work on this and my paper is really more of a sketch for this appeared. briefly the pre9/11 period i judge as one in which the foreign policy is as inco