Skip to main content

tv   C-SPAN Weekend  CSPAN  November 28, 2009 6:00am-7:00am EST

6:00 am
many people read and see a master plan as being evident before 9/11 and i don't think that's true. without the benefit of hindsight it's not -- i just don't think it's there. .
6:01 am
>> another alarm in which bleeding people in the administration were told they had been exposed to a deadly poison for which there was no answer and they might die soon until that was turned out to be a false alarm. it is a serious matter. i take john's point, actually. the instinct to elevate this into a great huge world force that is al qaeda as the new marxist lennonist threat of the age is false and gratify's bin laden's wildest fantasies. but if i told you today a crazy
6:02 am
man is running around in charlottesville with live ricin ready to pour it into the reservoir boy would this community be doing stuff. we would be reacting massively to that crazy man. so, it is a very big issue. a huge agenda comes out of that that i think developed in the year of 2001-2002 which has a whole series of things to tdo t improve the way we can go after al qaeda and its affiliates and this is a very complicated story spanning a number of agencies. second, a huge effort to change american domestic preparedness culminating in the development of the department of homeland security, even before d.h.s. is decided on in march of 2002, then secretly planned the next
6:03 am
three months. the administration has decided to double spending on domestic preparedness adding an additional $18 billion and you can imagine the development with that. third. there is huge effort to appeal globally and show the world we stand for a different model of global development punctuated by the whole millennium challenge approach. not only did that put billions of tkhradollars into things but intellectually transformed not only u.s. but worldwide attitudes about how to think about development into what i called compact models and has a very powerful impact. fourth, the decision that we are going to take the issue of iraq and come to grips with it and settle it during 2002. i don't think it is a decision
6:04 am
for war but many price you have to be ready for war. it had a long history that even though many that write about it don't know the history, everyone in the government working on the issue knew the history. so the story is one to understand the decisions they made have to understand the history in their heads. they basically looked at the iraq issue right away in 2001, they ran in the same stalemate that bedevilled the clinton administration and did nothing conclusive about it for a year, then after 9/11 they decided they can no longer tolerate the risk of going much further. i think the key atmosphere in the year of 2001-2002 after 9/11 how much risk are you prepared to tolerate. 10%? 15%? what is the lesson for you of 9/11 about how well you tolerate risk and what you are willing to do before the risk materializes
6:05 am
to head it off. two, a belief in the capacity of our government to address this because of the startling positive surprising success of afghanist afghanistan. in the sense that the size of action was decisively awarded. decisive action is being required by the times in a situation where we can no long er tolerate as much risk. i will stop there partly because there is a whole series of decisions made beginning about june of 2002 about exactly how do you get the iraq solution hau want. the there are very complicated ones. suffice it to say the agenda is set, but how to attain the agenda is not set. and i believe in arguing in the paper that any likely u.s. government that was in power after 9/11 including specifically al gore would have
6:06 am
more or less made a somehow settling the iraq issue a key part of the american agenda in 2002 and would probably have aspired at a minimum to something very like the u.n. security council 1441 approach. whether or not how that would have worked out beyond that is harder for me to figure. i will stop there. >> thank you very much, phillip. those were three really interested presentations. they put a lot on the table. there are a lot of specific things to go after. i hope you will in just a minute when i open it up for questions. let me put one question to the three panelists that someowhat s at a broader level. in each administration that you work worked, the united states had a difficult time coming up with
6:07 am
what phillip zelikow calls a new master script for american fortune policy. if you look at the events, the collapse of the wall and attacks of 9/11, the government did a pretty decent job in the kind of tactical response and cleanup to the immediate after mamath in b situations in terms of unification of germany and germany within nato and after 9/11 in terms of the invasion of afghanistan. where things started to get maybe shaky was in the longer-term plan. in terms of the bush administration 34 did have a doctrine after, a while afternoon 9/11 by the fall of 2002 that seemed to guide things and seemed to be problematic. walter slocombe has discussed
6:08 am
how the one strategy the clinton administration did have that was kind of long term led to poor results. eric adelman has made the case that the d.g.p. was a success and guided the administration but as hesitanted at by the questions this morning perhaps part of that focus of that document blinded us to the rise of radical islam and terrorism. so the question is maybe these doctrines and long-term planning things are not that great. do you agree with that? i have some sympathy for bob zelikow's suspicion about grand strategies. if you look at the list of the nine points, they are not bad plaidç attitudes but they are l platitudes.
6:09 am
being flexible, conflicting interests, so on. they are good guidelinesç but they are no at vandal. i think strategies involve choices. my classic example is the real strategic decision of roosevelt's decision in 1941 and 1942 to first establish and then stick to a germany first approach to winning the war. i think it is interesting that whatever else went wrong with the clinton administration's russia policy -- and there were some important successes particularly in foreign policy -- it wasn't for lack of a strategy. it was a clear decision that this was important and a clear decision of how to do it which was to back yeltsin both materially and medically and emotionally. there was a good deal of money and lots of presidential time
6:10 am
put into the effort. i think part of the problem is that grand strategies dark first of all, there is a real reluctance to make real strategic decisions because they do involve choices and commit you in the future and they involve taking things away from one thing and giving them to another. second, i'm always -- i con fells i don't understand business school models. but with great respect to expand our market share from 35% to 45% is not a strategy. it is a hope or an aspiration or something like that. but that kind of stuff often passes for strategy. it is important to have a clear sense of where you are going. it is also important to have a clear sense of what you can't do if you want to give some priority to something. but the peer writing of lots and
6:11 am
lots of words, which, if you read them as i have from time to time been compelled to do, is painful. they are full of platitudes which are almost irrefutable. it is hard to imagine being contrary. and values are important, but interests are in importamportan. personal relationships are important too but basic national goals -- we are probably going to get a brilliantly perfect one from the new administration. >> i agree with a bit of what walt said but i think i differ in one respect. i have been in any number of interagency meeting. i was in them with all three administrations. where the temptation is, given any given problem for people to sit down what are we going to do? what is the list of action items and what should the talking
6:12 am
points be before anybody asks what do we want to achieve. in that situation strategy documents can help frame choices and i agree that lists of nine priorities as i worked for one seco secretary of defense who said if you have nine priorities you don't have any priorities. so you have to make choices. i also agree that in some sense the simplest strategies are the best. europe first. containment. if you can fit it on a bumper sticker it is probably a pretty good strategy. you will pursue the army through northern virginia and get it. it is a pretty good strategy and not irrelevant. some strategies take longer to
6:13 am
cute than others. the poept is in our system it has gotten harder and harder over the years since the end of the second world war because the bureaucracies are bigger, there are more of them, there are more players at the table. and translating a president's intent or a commander in chief's intent into actual policy becomes harder and harder. i certainly agree that -- and i think phillip and bob said this -- anything that is run through the interagency slaw guaranteed to come out not as a strategy but a number of wish lists. but i think there is some utilitity in having reduced in some place a very short statement of what it is we are trying to accomplish as an administration and what should our objectives be, what are the priorities and how should we try to go about making those
6:14 am
choices. >> i actually come in with a great degree of skepticism about strategy documents having been involved in drafting one or two. i recommend to any of you who are interested a nice article that dick betts wrote published esteem ago talking about iraq. nonetheless, it is sometimes useful to write communicative documents that help people with what the construct is is you are deem w. we discussed with bob last night and a god test for such a document is after you have read the document did you learn something you didn't know before you read it? that is, the position is understood with greater precision, the authority behind the position is clarified. if the answer to the question is no, then it was really another boring and painful and wasted experience as walter has pointed
6:15 am
out. one advantage of the national security strategy of 2002 in comparison to the state draft we had was it was much shorter so less painful by that standard. but i want to focus attention n on, in the search for a master script i would like to focus your attention on two key words -- actually one is a fair phrase. the first is the words for defense. usually master scripts arise from deep beliefs in people's heads tar widely understood. the term forward defense is a concept that was deeply encoded into the world of american national security policy makers for a whole discrimination. it was a term they understood. and what is happening, i think, is, especially the post-9/11 period is the reflexes of forward defense, what is forward defense meaning when the enemy is in the wilderness areas of the world?
6:16 am
and does forward defense mean we have to defend against the enemy in afghanistan? because that is where o.p.l. is, in canada hardware. so reflecting on how the instinct and reflex of forward defense has been transmuted in the environment of new defense pays dividends. the other word is preemption. it has an interesting history in defense. in the drafting of the national security strategy of 2002 the first draft prepared in march of 2002 didn't use the word preelse. i discussed it with several people and we agreed it would be right and helpful to use the word preempt and preemption in the context of preempt iing terrorist attacks. actually the drafts go on to explain there is a difference between prevention -- preelse is
6:17 am
where you have a enemy and you want to spoil the next attack. the draft exclusively used preemption in the kocon techniqs of the counterterrorism sections of the document. all the d.w.m. used the word prevent. prevent hostile sites from using or acquiring or using d. -- w.m.d. against us. and they state the case that that was the dichotomy in all subsequent drafts that hadley and others reviewed up to about the middle of july of 2002, at which point they decided to pretty much leave in a little in the terrorism section but move the prehe was into the w.m.d. area and the main reason for that the best i could gather is because the lawyers wanted it there. particularly john belling er wh was the legal advisor that made the argument that it will help
6:18 am
us use the term preemption in the context of self-defense against a possible w.m. kfp phf adversary and if bellinger had an i had logical agenda it was to raise the political and evidentiary bars. and connie thought all -- condi thought all the semantics were immaterial because they were different instruments of prevention and she has a lengthy interview with david sanger in june of 2002 which is available now in which she explains exactly what her view is of this matter in backgrounding sanger on the significance of the president's west poeupint speec. so, the adoption of the term e preemption signifies the fact that the question of what we are going to do about iraq and how do we get that problem solved is
6:19 am
becoming crystalline in the summer of 2002. but more than that, i think it is hard to bear. the thing a clearly rebuts it is the inference that some brand-new policy of preemption of w.m.d. was bedded in the original conception of the document even after it was discussed with rice and hadley multiple times in the first half of 2002. >> i would like to open it up. we will start with the admiral here and head back to ambassador wolfowitz. down front first, please. please use the microphone, which allows us to communicate with the worldwide audience. >> i have an observation and a questi question, too. i learned that in academic circles you can make a statement and say am i right and turn it into a question.
6:20 am
i come at this from the vantage point of a practitioner who is trying to carry out policies and strategy of our country and explain this down to the level of someone of a marine carrying a rifle how do you do this. and plaining the arcane parts of developing strategy are sometimes calendaring. but i argue that the point, eric, that you made of having a missi mission, a europe first or something like that that is written down is very useful. sometimes the development of the strategy or the strategic plan or the planning documents that we talk about, the main utility of them is not necessarily the outcome because, as has been pointed out once the first bullet flies things change
6:21 am
anyway. but the drill of having gone through the thought process of trying to pull all of this together then makes you, forces you to have considered at least many of the options that will arise. then you can respond more quickly. so, i think that is an important part in the utility of strategic documents in the planning process as well. so, i think that is, instead of saying this is all just a washington drill necessarily, it is not that. it is more than that. it is getting seminal words in there for the importance weaken p pre efrpb -- the importance between preemption and prevention are different so people can figure that out and have something to refer to apnd so the documents f putting these together are n
6:22 am
nottous bureacratic boilerplate, they are good things to have. keep in mind though, if you have read -- one of my favorite books talks about stuff happens and very seldom does it go the way you planned. am i right? thank you. >> yes. >> i agree with everythinged admiral said so you may ask why don't you sit down and shut up. i think there is a difference weaken strategic thinking and strategic documents. and maybe a further difference between strategy and grand strategy. there is such a thing as strategic thinking. i think it starts with the question of asking what you are doing, and eric made that
6:23 am
comment. i remember george schultz once said we were sitting in london an hour and a half discussing our planned trip to the phaoelts an 90 minutes before discussing logistics questions who will do the talking responsibilities, who will be in which meetings is a very important detail. finally said what is the purpose of this trip? it is so easy to get lost in the details we you are dealing with something as fascinating, complicated and deeply passionate as the defense budget. you can argue about it for weeks and weeks and not get to the question of what is it for. that is only the tpeufirst step. i do think if you think of it in its totality, it is about how to get to objectives that may not be directly achievable. in packet, the germany first strategy wasn't a tragedy in germany but it was a strategy for the war, we do germany first
6:24 am
and skwraepl. mcarthur had an island hopping strategy. someone said anyone who thinks the shortest distance between two points is a straight line should be disqualified from worki working. i think they should be disqualified from working on strategy. making decisions about allocating resources, when you think about commanders in battle that is what they are doing all the time. and a third thing is usually implied is that somebody is out there trying to defeat you. a business competitor or opposing commander or maybe just the world in general. you are not just sail inging a straight line. having said all of that, if you are talking about the totality of strategy it is never going to be written down in a document. it is going to be the product of a thought process, sometimes an individual, sometimes a very good group that has thought through so many different branches that they know what to do when they get to the next one
6:25 am
and they probably are not going to want to write it down for a number of reasons including the fact it would be embarrassing because some of it will be wrong. but they will have thought it through. i do think when you are talking about grand strategy, i think some of these, if you like bumper stickers, containment was a word, define an only, implied some choices, implied but only implied some sort of indirect ways of getting there. and one of the big issues never resolved is containment forever or as a way of leading to the collapse of the soviet union. i guess now everyone says it was the latter but it wasn't. but it had a lot of meaning in one word. and the statement about german unification as our objective. a lot flowed from defining that objective. these long turnidocuments that
6:26 am
don't think they do much but without making too big a case, but we tried to imply choices. you read carefully there are choices implied there and some important sense of directions set. but i think too often we get the government tied up in we are going to have this grand document and make them do it every four years and when they do it we will watch every day's progress to make sure we don't do anything they don't like. forget it. >> let's take two more questions or maybe a question and have responses. >> down front, please. >> thank you very much. i'm kate sanger in the department departments, a graduate student this. i'm imagining that in these transform active and fluid moments we're talking about that
6:27 am
a key to strong planning to readiness is identifying allies and rivals, identifying states that are likely to support you in your interests and those that are likely to undermine your ability to achieve those interests. i'm curious in these moments what criteria are used to distinguish allies from adversaries given a change in the international context, how much attention is given to devising perhaps new criteria to distinguish allies from rivals? and i'm interested in feedback from whoever wishes to comment. >> one more question to john mueller here. >> would you sort of discuss the issue of, if you are doing strategic reviews, including in that examination of fundamental premises. the sort of idea is it tends to be more tactical. for example, the issue that
6:28 am
proliferation is a bad thing has been around a long time. when kline got the bottom in 1964 and john mccone saying if that happens it will be world war three. a huge constant exaggeration of how fast proliferation would happen. and like most countries they decided it was a waste of time, effort and money and those that have given them up have not suffered any ill effects. but there's been sort of a continuous assumption that proliferation is a supreme -- stopping proliferation of nuclear weapons is a supreme priority. we examine it and say we were right the first time, but shouldn't she is important premises that are often so costly in application be examined from time to time? >> so, we have another queue of
6:29 am
questions waiting to go and i t want to give you a brief chance to answer some of these. >> what you say is nonproliferation is just not true. the united states has never taken the position that every acquisition of nuclear weapons by another country is all equally bad. the short answer of why we have a double standard with respect to iran and north korea relative to israel is the same as the reason we have a double standard with respect to france and england. the nature of of the person makes a difference. if sweden got nuclear weapons you might speak to the question, but it probably won't be a huge threat to us, whereas if north korea or iran has nuclear weapons, it is a serious issue. on the strategy issue, first of all, others in the room can probably identify the classic
6:30 am
parts of the military plan but one is to identify the mission, which is not actually a strange. that is what we are trying to do, whether take that hill or win the second world war. that is different from the threat, which is who is trying to stop us from taking the hill, which in a sense is your question. it is quite different from both the strategy, which to my mind is the broad approach of how are we going to go about doing that, which lever are we going to pull, then the tactics. and in some cases these are issues of fact. my favorite, very interesting question -- usuallyç it is supervisficiallyç to tell who and who won't. i always like to relate intelligence failures to the no ability of the fact. i used to be amused by the fact that when i did charts on the salt 2 agreement we had to show
6:31 am
what the forces would be like if the treaty were in effect and for the soviet union we had one answer. for the united states we had three because the air force and navy couldn't agree so we had the air force view, navy view and the average of the two, meaning the pretense that we knew the soviet answer better than the american answer. my favorite he can is what most of you sensibly have forgotten -- iç hope you have all forgotn it but some of you may have forgotten the hroplong range cr missiles and pershings 2's in europe. we knew because the germans had set the requirement that there had -- germany would take some but there had to be another europe european country that would take some and england was not european enough. what we didn't realize is the italians were easy. we could have gotten the italians -- the italian
6:32 am
communist party was in favor of doing it. we didn't know that. the problem is that is an intelligence problem basically of who might have an interest in what you are wanting to do or might have an interest in stopping you. it is a hard çproblem. it is a intelligence problem. to be fair to my original answer it my disdain for big stories, the question was, was it a problem that we didn't have a new master scriptç for each administration. that is very different from saying, given a specific problem do you have a properly organizeç plan including mission, strat y strategy, resources, et cetera.ç >> i didn't think that the n.s.s. document called the national security strategy was a strategy. in fact, therefore, when i was asked to draft a national
6:33 am
security strategy i changed the title andç took off national security strategy and substituted basic statement of national securityç policy, whi is the title that i cribbed from an eisenhower document that i much admired. that actuallyt( stayed the titl for the next eight drafts or something. and it didn't get changed until near theç endç when again proy some lawyer said the statute says we must submit a national securityç strategy and condi jt says submit it.ç so no one thought it was a tragedy that told you how to relate means and ends and make choices in doing that. indeed, the origin of the strategy before 9/11, condi, who was babying the president sensed the administration didn't have a clear statement. it did seem ratherç inchoate. and changing her views on, from
6:34 am
the campaign she had articulated for the campaign decided it had come to a number of ideas about how to respond to globalization and how the united states could play a role pond ing ing to ite associated with globalization. and the initial resume nations that would be built on later which she supervisored that are about that and that materialç gets adapted to the potts 9/11 world because it was seen that 9/11 in a way dramatically underscored a particularly viral form of global forces and we need a broader statement of national security policy that was not just about terrorism but was about all these other things, too. indeed, one of the great tragedies of the administration trying toa+ticulate in this broader agenda was swamped by what happened to them in iraq.
6:35 am
in 2003 andç the following yea. the distinguished allies fromç adversaries is very important to figure out. usually you know who your sad sayers are.ç deciding whoç your allies are n be trickier and once you figure out what you want to tdo if you do the right analysis you will figure out who is helping you.
6:36 am
>> i think that these things are appreciations that are a complex of interacting judgments voluming values, instrumental judgments and what your reality judgment of what you think is going on.ç so, give you a concrete example, supposeç you think the bush administration may have exaggerated the threat posed by iraqi5a w.m.d. in 2002. and this is an interesting é@ historian's argument. what i think clearly though they were not going to reexamine the premises ofxd that intelligence unless they had instrumental needs to do so which had been arising in a big way in the fall of 2002 as theyzbp+e to make the case to congress and the united nations. but suppose as the war plan is
6:37 am
developed that the secretary of defense is telling them boy is this hard. you thought this was a 225-day war. this will take us years, it will require at least the full deployment of the ç265,000 peoe in the hybrid plan and maybe who knows more beyond. you get a briefing like that that impresses with all the things you are running into. that will get to you rea few other premises at the same time. >> onq the three points that wee raised,w3 i want to make one addition. you have command eers' intent because you know units will get lost, ships will get separated. you want people when they improvise to understand what they are trying to improvise starred and it goes a little bit to phillip's interesting
6:38 am
breakout of the different phases of bush 41 and where they were prepared to improvise properly or adapt flexibly given the challenges in those periodsç. on the question of allies, the only thing i would add to what palestinian said isiwl at this particular period at the end of the cold war we were focusing on offered up a kind of interesting case study in you have the traditional alliances and you want to strengthen them but you also now have a whole range of potential new realities including in some people'sç mi potentially a democratizing rush and i think that isç one point that walt's paper makes is that the clinton administration was basing its policy on a partnership with russia in the hope that russia could end up in some sense being an ally.q by the way, i can that has been
6:39 am
the underpining of four successive administrations, 41, clinton, 43 and the obama administration. the only questionegis whether te obama administration will make it work with the kind of russia that walt described coming out in the process. finally, on the question of your point, i make this as anxd observation. i agree with what walt said about regime type making a big difference but i have observed having started inç the academy and come into government and spent 30 years that i notice thatç there is a body of literature that saysç more nuclearç weapons are better. after all, if we had this stablr bipolar balance in the cold war what is wrong with having more nuclear weapons? and i think steve rosen had an article in the mid 1970's the way to have a stable middle east balance is for everybody to have nuclear weapons in the middle
6:40 am
east. interestingly, i have neverko m anybody as a practitioner in an interagencyzv meeting who belies that. maybe that -- >> [inaudible] >> maybe that goes to your point aboutç certain assumptions not being khaltd. but i think it has to do with the fact that the policeman that bear the responsibility and worry about the fear of the use of nuclear weapons, nobody has solved what was defined asd8 th jy that is to say bipolar nuclear balance may work but given what we found out with the opening of soviet archives i would not be all that sanguine about it. i think we came close in the cuban missile crisis to a nuclear exchange. i think there were other episodes. 1982 the russians thought we were close to a nuclear exchange. so i'm not sure how we
6:41 am
understand deterrence working. when you have lots of countries with veryç small stockpiles of nuclear weapons and you start to get more players in the game, i think that it is pretty reasonable to assume you willç have more people looking at the potentialw3 of preemption and i could get much greater bias in favor of using them. you sayw3 correctly that in the early 1960's people were thinking we were going to have 40 nuclear powers. john kennedyç thought we would. now we have nine. so it hasok been very slow. but there's been a fairly enormous u.s. government exertion to keep it at nine and i think that -- i'm not personallyñr comfortable with ñr nine. >> you should examine the premise and you picked a terb k terrible examine.
6:42 am
i think also there is this question of what is the alternative. we are probably, unless negotiations with iran work, we are going to have to make a decision about what doç we dos we can not either by sanctions or persuasion orq military forc eliminate iran's nuclear weapons potential and there will be people who argue that we should live with it. it is not that it is a sort of absolute -- i'm not in favor of that result. but i think that issue will come up. there are better examinationç examine the premise like theç nature latin american governments. >> in front, please. >> in is a question for all lee of you, i think.
6:43 am
brent scowcroft once said for him the cold war ended when g h gorbachev allowed germançó un n unification in nato. but some argue he allowed for it because he didn't think that nato would enlarge to the east and i think that someone earlier saidmy that bush was opposed to this or said he was. today it has. so to what extent was this development a broken promise on the part of the u.s. and what extent does it define the current relationship which some have used to build tension in >> we will tako another one. >> i have the feeling this
6:44 am
afternoon÷ -- i'm a product of the government and academia and more recently journalism. i have the same feeling that i did when you and mel had your conference a couple of years ago on strategy after the bush administration. it runs something like this. you have three brilliant scholarsç here today who have been in government who understand what it is all about and the whole gist of the conversation is that america is going to go on continuing to be the preeminent worldç power. perhaps challenged but we are going to keep on doing pretty much the way we have done it. do you suppose that barack ob ç obama, in these five sessions that he has hadi] in the last f
6:45 am
weeks over the future policy in afghanistan, has brought in anybody who asks the question, what is it going to cost? and is this accountant willing to pay thoseç costs to maintai this kind of international policy into the foreseeable futu future? >> one more question.ç >> i'm a graduate student of the politics department. my question is similar to the last two and gets back to the theme of the lastç panel whichs strategic lessons learned. i was intrigued by professor zelikow's comments that after 9/11 the lesson learned was decisive actionç was decisivel rewarded and the threat emerges deal with it now and chop off its head now, take care of it
6:46 am
before it gets any worse. and while you didn't explicitly say what the lesson was of çç, my sense of your commentary on it was that it was almost an inopposite lesson. you -- don't always act before you know if the events that are transpiring organically might be desirable. so the answer there is it is more european history than american history and a certain amount ofç stroeupblq restrain- strategic restraint was a desirable thing. and was that a lesson actually learned? was there a lesson learned from 1989 that wasw3 reflected in th strategic planning after that and maybe just forgotten or was something else learned from 1 9 1989? >> i'm afraid that you
6:47 am
misunderstood me. i have expressed myself poorly. the lesson of the 1989 situation, we were not cautious. in fact, the administration moved rather rapidly to announce that itt( wanted an ambitious agenda that would transform europe and make itç whole and free. and the paper goes into some detail about that. so, in fact, they acted with some decisiveness. what i said is in 1989 the american view on that point was important but not central to the revolutions of 1989 up to about the late summer and fall. in the late summer and fall not only was american then central, if anything it acted with greater speed and decisiveness in courting a varietyç of risk. but it acted with such great speed and velocity in part because it was deplzwr'g with existing institutions and existing mindsets which helped
6:48 am
in move with greater agility and skill. in the period of 2001-2002 and a lot of people that lived through this and lessons they took away from from that is lessons of success, lessons thatç decisiv action can be rewarded. if they had not been the authorses of military catastrophes. they had all been reasonably successful and one major case surprisingly successful. so they were not conditioned to thinking thatç either the earlr experience or their current experience is one that should condition them to a tragic view of american foreign policy or one that should encourage them to be less decisive, especially in a situation of greater urgency and stress. as to the cost of preeminence, is anyone examining those costs,
6:49 am
the n.s.c. staff has been notoriously unable to do anything about working budgets. it is a good ideaw3 for o.m.b. d larger resources be latched up to national security decisions.f the last administration that did a really good job of coordinating national security strategy with resources was the eisen hour administration. so it can be done, but very few people in office at the moment have living memory of how no do it. onç nato enlargement and the broken promise, the short answer is simply the book which runs through it one more time and i think mary's back is the best example i can give you of somebody who handled the issue with complete factual accuracy and maximum empathy for the russian side of the argument. her conclusions are not that the
6:50 am
promise was broken but thatñr things were said that allowed people to argue and feel that promises had been broken even though they were not. that on the legal side of this, you know, legally do they have a case? no. but emotionally do they have a case? maybe. mary makes thatç argument i thk as sympathetically as it can be >> i will chime in with one ts. final question that ties the last panel to this. john, you learned the last panel claimed that america goes in search of monsters and overinflates threats in a way thatñr hurts americanç foreign policy. we just heard a panel of foreign policy makers talking about strategy and i don't think once we heard domestic politicsç co into the discussion.xd i wonder if there is a lengink
6:51 am
between thoseko two in that onef the reasons you overinflate threats is you have to generate domestic consensus and one of the challenges that consumes america in the era of uncertainty is how to maintain that domestic consensus which is certainly central in the 1989 period when bush felt that he had to keep nato alive, germany and nato, to sustain that u.s. support. the d.p.g. at the end of bush 41 there is a significant statement that they were talking about defense cuts but theçó concern making strategy was to put form in the cuts. then after 9/11 how do you mobilize this country around the threat that people are going to say it is just a singleç attac which may have been what it was. so, that it is needed in fact to mobilize the country to prevent these kinds of things.
6:52 am
is that the case? are you really discussing how this will play at home and further our international mission without really ever questioning that mission? because if you push john mueller's argument what it comes down to is questioning primacy. >> i have forgotten my latin. that was the opposite ofç the admiral's. that[ was a statement disguis as a question and i forgot in latin there was a nole or nule depending on what you expected. i think the lawyers have an objection of lack of foundation and thei] foundation is we inve it first.c'ñ with respect, i think the idea that the only reason anybody was concerned about soviet expans n expansionism in the 1950's was the korean war is a profoundly ahistoricalç description of events. if i was going to point to a
6:53 am
single event i would point to the prague coup in 1948. can you seriously imagine sitting in 1950 either as citizen or as an officialq and saying the soviet union has, contrary to all of its post-war promises, managed to establish a monopoly of communist party power in all the countries including some that wereç not occupied.ñr czechoslovakia was not occupied in 1948. it has a huge -- we sapblg straighted the capability of the army. but say it is all in our imagination. i have read problems ofxd communism and some say the war will be a revolutionary war. second, the domestic problem is inverted. it is for better or for worse and some degree to worse easily
6:54 am
to build domestic support to spend money on defense.çç the least of theç problemw3 is convincing people that the defense budget is too small -- i'm sorry -- that it is easy to convince people that the defense budget needs whatever we have asked for. it is hard to convince people that the budget for roads or schools or the environment or pensions or healthcareu is bigr enough. it is not true to say thatçóç person of the 1990's was a desperate effort to conjure up nonexisting threats to justify what was a shrinking defense budget almost all of that period of time. and by the way, in the paper i know it is kind of cheating to say it is in my paper but i
6:55 am
didn't say it which may imply i didn't think it was serious. one funny thing about nato enlargement is it was almost the only policy issueç that the clinton administration faced where there was a domestic constituency that made any classic politicalxb differenceç opposed to legitimate domestic interests of foreign policy and that was the fact that there wereç ethnics groups in the united states who were in favor of whatever you want to fill in being in nato. and it had an impact. it would be silly to deny it. so, domestic politics and domestic preferences have an impact. one thing which is striking to my mind isok the change from a small group that cares passionately about the iss issue-bosnia the classic case where there areç maybe 10 congressmen and some people out
6:56 am
in the world who wereç real interested in an aggressive policy for bosnia. as soon as we had an aggressive policy for bosnia, you realize there were a lot of peopleç wh for good or bad reasons opposed it. then there was the classic day whenç republican controlled hoe of representativesw3 voted agait a greater effort, voted against a smaller effort. and tied on doing what we were.ç >> we have about two more minutes. >> on phillip's question of were promises broken, at one point íhen i was strobe talbott's chief of staff he askedç me too back andxd read those tkoeplts. aç do think there is a danger here for the current administration to uual this
6:57 am
revisionist history that has been conjured up and i heard thati] delivered to bob gates. and it is something that which is thatmy in the 1990's our stud russian leaders acquiesced wyoming the west took advantage of us and now because we are back and convenient ly forget te $55 million in credits and grants and other things that were done by the bush and clinton administrations to ease russia's transition. i think that it is a mistake to accede to that because it becomes a justificationñr suppo the dismantlement of russian democracy and its belligerent attitudes toward neighbors. a and in a spirit of what i might have called earlier the self-criticism i think we didn't do a very good job in bush 43 of
6:58 am
highlighting that. to answer jeff's question about the cost of primacy and is it worth the candle, the problem is that t&r)e are costs to being the primary player in the international system. there are also costs to not being a primary player. if the united states doesn't have the reserve currencyç the are a lot of implications for our domestic political economy. sam huntington wrote about this period and i will quote what he said because i agree with çit. a world without u.s. primacy will be a world with more violence and disorder and less democracy than a world where the united states has more influence. this sustained international primacy is central to the welfare and security of america and future of freedom. democracy, openç economy and international order in the world.
6:59 am
>> we will have moreym conversation later. i would like you to please join me in thanking our participants on the panel.ñrñr we will take a ;10-minute break and reconvene with the final panel.çç [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009]ç [captioning performed by national captioning institute] .çfá passno carrier


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on