CHAIRED BY: SENATOR CARL LEVIN (D-MI)
SEN. LEVIN: The committee will come to order.
We meet this morning to receive testimony on the Defense Strategy Review from Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Hugh Shelton. This is the first time that Secretary Rumsfeld has testified before Congress since his confirmation, and I just want to welcome you and Senator (sic) Shelton both to our committee.
Secretary Rumsfeld has indicated that his ongoing Defense Strategy Review is designed to think through the critical questions that shape our armed forces, including the types of threats that our military forces need to be prepared to face today and in the future, and how our military forces should be organized and equipped to meet those threats. He has stated that the results of this review will be folded into the Quadrennial Defense Review, the QDR, which will shape our
national defense strategy as well as the administration's plans for force structure, force modernization and infrastructure. The QDR, in turn, will play a major role in shaping the administration's defense budget decisions beginning with fiscal year 2003.
I agree with the Secretary's view that we need to engage our brains before we open our wallets. Our defense budget should surely be driven by a realistic strategy, and not the other way around.
Today we embark on a first step in our committee's dialogue with the secretary on the national defense strategy. The secretary has emphasized that his views remain preliminary at this point and that he is not yet ready to address all of the force structure, acquisition and infrastructure decisions that will eventually shape the administration's proposed defense budget. But nonetheless, there are important issues for us to discuss. For some time, for instance, I have felt that the so-called two- major-theater war requirement was outdated. Something is awfully wrong when that requirement results in an Army division being declared unready simply because it is engaged in a real-life peacekeeping mission in the Balkans.
I'm also concerned that we may not be putting enough emphasis on countering the most likely threats to our national security and to the security of our forces deployed around the world, those asymmetric threats, like terrorist attacks on the USS Cole, on our barracks and our embassies around the world, on the World Trade Center, including possible attacks with weapons of mass destruction and cyberthreats to our national security establishment and even to our economic infrastructure.
Two years ago, Senator Warner established a new subcommittee called the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities, to focus our attention on these new asymmetric threats and the ways to counter them. Senator Roberts, as then-chairman, and Senator Landrieu, as then-ranking member, have done an outstanding job with this subcommittee for the past two years, and I know that they will continue their good work with their roles reversed, as the new chair and the new ranking members of this important subcommittee.
Senator Warner and I have asked the General Accounting Office to conduct a review of the Quadrennial Defense Review in the coming months. And Mr. Secretary, I know that you and your staff will cooperate with the GAO in its effort to review the QDR process as it unfolds and to analyze the QDR product for the committee once it is concluded.
Finally, I just want to emphasize to you, Mr. Secretary, that it is critically important for the Defense Department to provide the budget documents for your FY 2002 budget amendment to Congress by June 27. I understand that this budget will not reflect the results of the Defense Strategy Review to any great extent, so I just see no reason for delay beyond that. If it gets here by June 27 and if, as hoped for, you testify on June 28, we will then have three months to mark up the national Defense Authorization Bill in committee, get it passed by the Senate, complete conference with the House and send it to the president before the end of the fiscal year.
Historically, it has taken us an average of almost five months just to get the bill past the Senate, so doing the entire process in three months will be a monumental task. It cannot be done without the cooperation of everyone involved.
I know that Senator Warner is on his way. He's been briefly delayed. I would ordinarily turn to him for his opening comments. And what I will do instead is now ask you, Secretary Rumsfeld, to open up, and then when Senator Warner gets here, we will turn to him for his opening statement. Welcome.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Thank you very much Mr. Chairman. And I thank you and the committee for calling this hearing on what I consider to be a very important subject, indeed the driving aspect of defense policy, the strategy.
I would like to present a portion of my remarks and request that the entire testimony be made a part of the record.
SEN. LEVIN: It will be.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Since coming into office five months ago, I've been asking a great many questions, as you know, and discussing a number of key issues regarding how our armed forces might be best arranged to meet the new security challenges of the 21st century. And I do appreciate this opportunity to report on our progress.
Later this month, I will hope to be available to discuss the '02 budget amendment, but before we get to that budget, I do think today is best to discuss the larger strategic framework and our efforts to craft a defense strategy that's appropriate to the threats and challenges we surely will face in the period ahead.
As you know, we've conducted a number of studies, most of which have been briefed to you or the staff, including missile defense, space transformation, conventional forces and morale and quality of life. We've just completed about a month of consultations with our friends and allies around the world on the various security challenges we'll face.
We've also begun and interesting and somewhat unusual process within the Defense Department. Over the past several weeks, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs,General Shelton, here on my right, the vice chairman, each of the service chiefs, and the CINCs on occasion, plus the senior few civilian officials who are confirmed have held a series of meetings to discuss the subject of defense strategy.
We've met for about three or four weeks now, almost three or four times a week, for three or four hours a day, to produce a detailed strategy guidance or terms of reference for the congressionally mandate Quadrennial Defense Review. That senior group of military and civilian officials have come to some understandings and agreements that we are considering as a new strategy in a force-sizing approach. And over the next six to eight weeks, we will test those ideas through the QDR process against different scenarios and models and will discuss our ideas and findings with the members of the committee. And later this summer, or early fall, we'll know whether or not we believe we have something that we can confidently recommend to the president and the Congress, and which we could then use to help us prepare the 2003 budget in the fall.
In approaching these discussions, we began with the fact that at present we're enjoying the benefits of the unprecedented global economic expansion, but we really can't have a prosperous world unless we first have peaceful world. And the security and stability that the United States armed forces provide to the global economy is a critical underpinning of that peace and prosperity.
If we are to extend this period of peace and prosperity, we need to prepare now for the new and different threats that we'll face in the decades ahead and not wait until they fully emerge. Our challenge, it seems to me, in doing so is complicated by the fact that we really can't know precisely who will threaten us in the decades ahead. The only thing we know for certain is that it's unlikely that any of us know what is likely.
Consider the track record of my lifetime. Born in 1932, the Great Depression was underway, and the defense planning assumption of the '30s was no war for 10 years. By 1939, war was begun in Europe. And in 1941, the fleet that the United States constructed to deter war became the first target of the naval war of aggression in the Pacific. Airplanes did not exist at the start of the century, but by World War II, bombers, fighters, transports and other aircraft had become common military instruments that critically affected the outcome of the war. And in the Battle of Britain, a nation's fate was decided in the skies.
Soon thereafter, the atomic age shocked the world. It was a surprise. By the 1950s, our World War II ally, the Soviet Union, had become our Cold War adversary. And then, with little warning, we were, to our surprise, at war in Korea. In the early 1960s, few had focused on Vietnam, but by the end of the decade, the U.S. was embroiled in a long and costly war there.
In the mid-1970s, Iran was a key U.S. ally and a regional power. A few years later, Iran was in the throes of an anti-Western revolution and was the champion of Islamic fundamentalism. In March of 1989, when Vice President Cheney appeared before this committee for his confirmation hearings, not one person uttered the word "Iraq," and within a year, he was preparing for U.S. war in Iraq.
That recent history should make us humble. It certainly tells me that the world of 2015 will almost certainly be very little like today and, without doubt, notably different from what today's experts are confidently forecasting.
But while it's difficult to know precisely who will threaten us or where or when in the coming decades, it is less difficult to anticipate how we might be threatened. We know, for example, that our open borders and open societies make it very easy and inviting for terrorists to strike at our people where they live and work, as you suggested in your opening remarks. Our dependence on computer-based information networks today makes those networks attractive targets for new forms of cyberattack.
The ease with which potential adversaries can acquire advanced conventional weapons will present us with new challenges in conventional war and force projection, and may give them new capabilities to deny U.S. access to forward bases. Our lack of defenses against ballistic missiles creates incentives for missile proliferation, which, combined with the development of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction, could give future adversaries the incentive to try to hold our populations hostage to terror and blackmail.
There are some important facts which are not debatable. The number of countries that are developing nuclear, chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction is growing. The number of ballistic missiles on the face of the Earth and the number of countries possessing them is growing as well.
Consider this: In 1972, the number of countries pursuing biological weapons was unknown. Today there are at least 13 that we know of, and there are most certainly some that we don't know of, and these programs are of increasing sophistication and lethality. In 1972, 10 countries had chemical programs that we knew of. Today there are 16. Four countries ended their chemical weapons programs, but 10 more jumped in to replace them. In 1972, we knew of only five countries that had nuclear weapons; today we know of 12. In '72, we assessed a total of nine countries as having ballistic missiles. Today we know of 28 countries that have them. And we know that those are only the cases we know of. There are dangerous capabilities being developed at this moment that we do not know about and may not know about for years, in some cases until after they are deployed.
What all this means is that soon, for the first time in history, individuals who have no structure around them to serve as a buffer on their decision-making, will possess nuclear, chemical, biological weapons and the means to deliver them. This presents a very different challenge from the Cold War. Even in the old Soviet Union, the general secretary of the Communist Party, dictator though he was, had a Politburo to provide some checks and balances that might have kept him from using those weapons at his whim alone. What checks and balances are there on a Saddam Hussein or a Kim Jung Il? None that we know of, and certainly none that we believe we can influence.
While this trend in proliferation is taking place, we're also seeing another trend unfold that's both negative and positive: the increasing power and range and sophistication of advanced conventional weapons. If harnessed by us, these advanced weapons can help us extend our current peace and security into the new century. If harnessed by our adversaries, however, those technologies could lead to unpleasant surprises in the years ahead and could allow hostile powers to undermine our current prosperity and peace.
Future adversaries may use advanced conventional capabilities to deny us access to distant theaters of operation, and as they gain access to a range of new weapons that allow them to expand the deadly zone to include our territory, infrastructure, space assets, population, friends, allies, we may find future conflicts are no longer restricted to the regions of origin. For all these reasons, a new approach to deterrence is needed. We are living in a unique period in history when the Cold War threats have receded but the dangerous new threats of the 21st century have not fully emerged.
We need to take advantage of this period to ensure that we're prepared for the challenges we will certainly face in the decades ahead. The new threats are on the horizon, and with the speed of change today, where technology is advancing not in decades but in months and years, we can't afford to wait until they have emerged before we prepare to meet them.
With this security situation in mind, our team at the Pentagon has been working to develop an appropriate defense strategy for the coming decade. Our goal was to provide clear strategic guidance and ideas for the congressionally mandated Quadrennial Defense Review. Working with the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the vice chairman, the service chiefs, we've had extensive discussions and worked through complex issues. We've now provided guidance to test some preliminary conclusions over the next two months before making any recommendations to the president or the Congress.
One of the key questions before us is whether to keep the two nearly simultaneous major-theater war force-sizing construct. The two MTW approach was an innovation at the end of the Cold War. It was based on the proposition that the U.S. should prepare for the possibility that two regional conflicts could arise at the same time, and if the U.S. were engaged in a conflict in one theater, an adversary in a second theater might try to gain his objectives before the U.S. could react, and prudence dictated that the U.S. take this possibility into account.
The two MTW approach identified both Southwest Asia and Northeast Asia as areas of high national interest to the U.S. In both regions, regimes hostile to the U.S. and its allies and friends possessed the capabilities and had exhibited the intent to gain their objectives by threat or force. The approach identified the force packages that would be needed for the U.S. to achieve its wartime objectives, should two nearly simultaneous conflicts erupt. These force packages were based on an assessment of combat capabilities and likely operations of an adversary, on the one hand, and the capabilities and doctrine of U.S. forces, so recently displayed in Desert Storm, on the other hand.
The two MTW approach served well in that period. It provided a guidepost for reshaping and resizing the force from one oriented to global war with a nuclear superpower to a smaller force focused on smaller regional contingencies. But when one examines that approach today, several things stand out. First, because we've underfunded and overused our forces, we find that to meet acceptable levels of risk, we're short a division. We're short of airlift. We have been underfunding aging infrastructure and facilities. We are short high-demand and low- density assets. The aircraft fleet is aging; it can -- and at growing cost to maintain. The Navy is declining in numbers, and we're steadily falling below acceptable readiness standards.
I have no doubt that should two nearly simultaneous conflicts occur, that we would prevail. But the erosion in the capability and the force means that the risks we would face today and tomorrow are notably higher than they would have been when the two MTW standard was established.
Second, during this period we have skimped on our people, doing harm to their trust and confidence, as well as to the stability of our force. Without the ability to attract and retain the best men and women, the United States Armed Forces will not be able to do their job.
Third, we have under-invested in dealing with future risks. We have failed to invest adequately in the advanced military technologies we will need to meet the emerging threats of the new century. Given the long lead times in development and deployment of new capabilities, waiting further into the 21st century to invest in those capabilities poses a risk.
Fourth, we have really not addressed the growing institutional risks, that is to say the way the Department of Defense operates. The waste, the inefficiency, the distrust that results from the way it functions will over time, I fear, erode public support to the detriment of the country.
And fifth, an approach that prepares for two major wars focuses military planners on the near term, to the detriment of preparing for the longer-term threats. Too much of today's military planning is dominated by what one scholar of Pearl Harbor called "a poverty of expectations; a routine obsession with a few dangers that may be familiar rather than likely." But the likely dangers of this new century may be quite different from the familiar dangers of the past century. A new construct may be appropriate to help us plan for the unfamiliar and increasingly likely threats that we believe we'll face in the decades ahead.
All of this led our team to the conclusion that we owed it to the president, to the country, to ask the question whether the two nearly simultaneous major regional theater war approach remains the best for the period ahead. So we set in motion a process that's not been tried before, knowing that any change would, unquestionably, require the military advice and the commitment of the chairman, the vice chairman, the service chiefs, the regional and functional CINCs. We asked them to see if together we couldn't fashion a proposal that we believed might better serve the country than the current two major theater war approach. The QDR process could then test that alternative against the two MTW approach to see whether or not we believed we'd found something that we might want to recommend to the president and to the Congress as a way ahead for the future.
The approach we will test will balance the current risks to the men and women in the armed forces; the risks to meeting current operational requirements and war plans; the risks of failing to invest for the future, by using this period of distinct U.S. advantage to, first, set us on a path to recover from the investment shortfalls in people, morale, infrastructure, equipment so we're able to attract and retain the people we need, and to invest in future capabilities that will be needed if the U.S. is to be able to reassure our allies and friends, and deter and defeat potential adversaries armed with advance technologies, vastly more lethal weapons, and a range of
methods of threatening their use.
While doing so, the U.S. must assure its ability to do these following things: First, defend the United States; second, maintain deployed forces forward to reassure our friends and allies, to pursue security cooperation, to deter conflict, and to be capable of defeating the efforts of any adversary to achieve its objectives by force or coercion, repelling attacks in a number of critical areas, and also be capable of conducting a limited number of smaller-scale contingencies while assuring the capability to win decisively against an adversary threatening U.S. vital interests anywhere in the world.
This approach, we think, takes account of the following: Takes account of the threat. The threat to the U.S. has increased. Terrorism and attacks, including the use of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons, is clearly a growing concern. Cyberattacks are increasing. The threat of ballistic and cruise missile attacks is increasing. Allied and friendly nations are also at increased risk. A new defense strategy would need to take this growing and increasingly complex threat into account.
Within the areas of critical concern to the U.S., the threat is evolving as well. Nations are arming themselves with a variety of advanced technology systems, from quiet submarines armed with high- speed torpedoes, cruise missiles to air defense radars to satellite- jamming capabilities. The development and integration of these capabilities are clearly designed to counter those military capabilities which provide the U.S. with its current military advantage.
Moreover, warfare is now conducted on shorter time-lines. Adversaries understand that their success may turn on the ability to achieve their objectives before the U.S. and its allies and friends can react.
Given these developments, we believe there's reason to explore enhancing the capabilities of our forward-deployed forces in different regions to defeat an adversary's military efforts with only minimal reinforcement. We believe this would pose a strong deterrent in peacetime, allow us to tailor forces for each region, and provide capability to engage and defeat adversaries' military objectives wherever and whenever they might challenge the interests of the U.S., our allies, and friends.
In the end, however, the U.S. must have the capacity to win decisively against an adversary. The U.S. must be able to impose terms on an adversary that assure regional peace and stability, including, if necessary, the occupation of an adversary's territory and change of its regime.
This strategy approach has been designed to ensure that we invest in the force for the future to assure that we have the margin of safety that we'll need in the future, while at the same time assuring the ability to deal with likely threats over the near term.
Because contending with uncertainty must be a centerpiece of U.S. defense planning, this strategy would combine both so-called threat- based as well as capability-based planning, using a threat-based planning to address nearer-term threats, while turning increasingly to capabilities-based approach to make certain that we develop forces prepared for the longer-term threats that are less easily understood.
Under such an approach, we would work to select, develop, and sustain a portfolio of U.S. military capabilities, capabilities that could not only help us prevail against current threats, but because we possess them, hopefully dissuade potential adversaries from developing dangerous new capabilities themselves. Some of the investment options we've discussed include, obviously, an investment in people; experimentation; intelligence; space, missile defense; information operations, pre-conflict management tools, which are not what they ought to be today, in my view; precision strike capability; rapidly deployable standing joint forces; unmanned systems; command control communications and information management; strategic mobility; research and development base; and infrastructure and logistics.
The portfolio of capabilities, in combination with a new strategy, could help us meet four important defense policy goals. First, to assure our friends and allies that we can respond to unexpected dangers and the emergence of new threats and that we will meet our commitments to them, and that it is both safe and beneficial to cooperate with the United States; second, to the extent possible, dissuade potential adversaries from developing threatening capabilities by developing and deploying capabilities that reduce their incentives to compete; third, to deter potential adversaries from hostile acts and counter coercion against the U.S., its forces or allies;
and fourth, should deterrence and dissuasion fail, defend the United States, our forces abroad, our friends and allies, against any adversary and, if so instructive, decisively win at a time, place and manner of our choosing.
These are some of the issues we've put to the QDR process to examine and test. As the process moves forward, we'll continue to consult with Congress and expect by late summer to make some recommendations to the president.
Let me underscore that we have not decided on a new strategy. We are considering and testing this concept and variants of that strategy against the current one. We will continue to consult with you as the QDR process approaches completion in September and we will then come to conclusions about the desirability of the possible new defense strategy. I must add, however, that the current strategy can't be said to be working, because of the shortfalls which I described, so it seems tome we owe it to ourselves to ask the question what might be better.
Preparing for the 21st century will not require immediately transforming the United States military; just a portion, a fraction of the force. As has been said, the blitzkrieg was an enormous success, but it was accomplished by only a 10 or 15 percent transformed German army. Change is difficult, but the greatest threat to our position today, I would summit, is complacency. Thankfully, Americans no longer wake up each morning and fret about the possibility of a thermonuclear exchange with the old Soviet Union. The Soviet Union is gone. They look at the world and they see peace, prosperity and opportunity.
We need the wisdom and sense of history and humility to recognize that while America does have capabilities, we are not invulnerable, and our current situation is not a permanent condition. If we don't act now, new threats will emerge to surprise us, as they have repeatedly in the past. The difference is that today's weapons are vastly more powerful.
My hope is to work with you, Mr. Chairman, and the members of the House and Senate; that's why I am here today, to discuss these matters. That's why we have undertaken these consultations with our allies and the intensive discussions with our senior military leaders. But let's begin with the understanding that the task is worth doing, a window of opportunity is open, but the world is changing. And unless we change, we will find ourselves facing new and daunting threats we did not expect and which we will be unprepared to meet.
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you, Mr. Secretary. The secretary has to leave shortly after 11:00. We're going to need to limit each member to five minutes so that every senator has an opportunity to ask questions.
I'm not going to call at this point on General Shelton to see if he has an opening statement, but rather I'm going to call on Senator Byrd, who, as chairman of the Appropriations Committee, has a commitment that requires him to be -- not to be able to return after our vote, which has just started. So I'm going to yield to Senator Byrd at this time, and then I think we will recess for 10 minutes.
SEN. ROBERT C. BYRD (D-WV): I thank you, Mr. Chairman, for your courtesy. And I thank you, Secretary Rumsfeld, for your statement, and I thank you,
General Shelton, for appearing her today.
The General Accounting Office -- let me say parenthetically once again that I favor the strategic review. I, of course, don't what the results will be, nor do any of the others of us. The General Accounting Office released a report on Monday, June 11, on the Pentagon's use of $1.1 billion that was earmarked in the FY 1999 Supplemental Appropriations Act to address the critical shortage of spare parts for the military. The GAO found that 8 percent of that money, or $88 million, was used by the Navy to purchase spare parts. The remaining 92 percent of the appropriations was transferred to the Operations and Maintenance accounts of the military services and thus became indistinguishable from other Operations and Maintenance funds used for activities that include mobilization and training and administration.
While funds in the Operations and Maintenance accounts can be used to purchase spare parts, the GAO report states that the military services, quote, "could not readily provide information to show how these funds were used," close quote, therefore confounding the GAO's attempt to verify that the funds were actually used to purchase the spare parts that were urgently needed.
Now Mr. Secretary, the reason I can't come back here today is because I'm chairing the markup of the Appropriations Committee on the 2001 Supplemental Appropriations Bill. So this question comes at a very important time. I find it shocking that the Pentagon requested funds to meet an urgent need and then is unable to show Congress that it used those funds to address the problem.
Now, while you're not responsible for the department's use of appropriations before you assumed your current position, the FY 2001 Supplemental Appropriations Bill that was submitted to Congress contains $2.9 billion that will go to the same Operations and Maintenance accounts that lost track of the $1 billion that was appropriated two years ago.
Now, how can Congress, how can my Appropriations Committee, how can this committee here have any confidence that these funds that are being requested in the Supplemental Appropriations Bill which we're making up today will be used as Congress intends them to be?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Senator Byrd, you know better than most anybody that the financial reporting systems of the Department of Defense are in disarray; that is to say, they are perfectly capable of reporting certain things, but they're not capable of providing the kinds of financial management information that any large organization would normally have.
At your suggestion in my confirmation hearing, we have asked -- we had a team of people take a look at the financial reporting systems. They've reported to the new comptroller general, Dr. Dov Zakheim. He has begun the process of finding ways to see that the ability to track transactions is improved.
The problem here -- and, of course, needless to say, I don't know about the specific instance you're describing. But the problem, insofar as it's been characterized to me, is not that the money is necessarily going to something other than it should be, it is that the financial systems don't enable one to track the transaction sufficiently that we can go to the Congress and say in fact of certain knowledge they went where the Congress indicated they should go.
SEN. BYRD: Yes. Now, Mr. Secretary, I know that you're working on this, we've discussed this before in this committee. But here we have a request today before the Senate Appropriations Committee -- I'm the chairman, and I'm going to follow this. And as I say, you can't be held accountable for what has happened before your watch began, but your watch is beginning. Now, we're being requested for, as I say, over $2 billion -- $2.9 billion, to go to the same O&M accounts that lost track of the $1 billion that was appropriated two years ago.
Now, if we appropriate that money in the appropriations bill which I'm reporting out -- and I'm adding language in the committee report to tighten the screws on the Defense Department in this respect. If we put that bill out with that money in it, what assurance can this committee have, and what assurance can the Appropriations Committee have that that money is going to be trackable and that the money that's being asked for spare parts will be used for spare parts and that we can follow the tracks, that the GAO can follow those tracks, because, Mr. Secretary, you're going to come back next year and want more money. Now, what assurance can I have?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Well, I tend to like to under-promise and over- deliver, if I can. So I'm going to be just brutally frank. I am told by the experts that it will take years to get the financial systems revised and adjusted to a point where they will be able to track in a real-time basis each of the transactions that takes place in the department.
So the assurance -- I can't give you assurance that the financial systems will be fixed in five minutes or a year or two years because the estimates are multiple years.
SEN. BYRD: Yeah, I understand that.
SEC. RUMSFELD: What I can assure you is that in terms of this administration, what we will do is do everything humanly possible to be absolutely certain that the instructions are very clear as to where funds should be spent, and to the extent there's going to be any shifting or reprogramming, that we come to the Congress, under the law, and seek appropriate approval.
SEN. BYRD: I have every confidence that you're going to do that. But specifically now, specifically with respect to the spare parts -- this is what I'm talking about -- where $1.1 billion was earmarked last year for spare parts -- or two years ago, in the FY 1999 supplemental appropriation, GAO found that 92 percent of those funds were transferred to O&M accounts. What assurance do we have that the $2.9 billion that are being requested in today's supplemental appropriations are going to be trackable?
I know you're undergoing this systems review. I have great respect for your efforts and I know that's what you intend to do. But I am specifically upset because of the earmarking that went on here with respect to spare parts; the General Accounting Office is not able to track those. Now, what's going to happen with the $2.9 billion that I'm going to mark up for your department today -- or may not -- what's going to happen?
I want some assurance that there be some way to track this item, because I think we're --
Mr. Secretary, you spoke about the erosion of confidence by the American people, and you're exactly right. But there's going to be an erosion of confidence in the Appropriations Committee. As I say, I don't expect you to be accountable for previous administrations, but we're being asked for $2.9 billion here. And I want to be responsible to my constituents, and I want to hold the department responsible for this money that is being asked for today, or else our confidence is going to erode pretty fast.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Well, what I'll do is I'll look into what happened in the past and see if it's possible to see if there was some sort of a reprogramming authority that was presented to the Congress; I just simply don't know. And if there was, I'll be happy to have you briefed as to exactly what took place.
As to the future, to the extent that we are asking for funds for a specific purpose, I can assure you they'll either be spent for that purpose, or we will come before the Congress and say that the circumstances changed, which happens in life, and that we request permission to spend those funds for some other purpose according to the law.
SEN. BYRD: Well, I thank you for that assurance, Mr. Secretary. Let me assure you that I'm going to be watching this. I think it's indefensible for the agency not to be able to show the General Accounting Office, which is the arm of the Congress, what happened to this money that we appropriated specifically and earmarked specifically for spare parts. We're being asked for similar monies again, as I say. Now, we need to know that this problem, whether or not it's going to take years to solve. But I understand you to say -- on this specific area, we're going to watch that closely. Am I correct?
SEC. RUMSFELD: You are.
SEN. BYRD: I hope, Mr. Secretary, that you'll be able to do that. I am confident that you intend to keep that promise. And the promise has to be kept, because we're going to -- if I'm still living a year from now -- and that's up to the Good Lord. The people of West Virginia have already signed my contract, five years -- I'll be back. And you'll want more money next year. And I don't mean to be pointing my finger at you personally. But this -- I ought not be asking this question. We need in the Congress to mean it when we say it, and the department needs to mean it when it says it needs that money and will spend that money for spare parts.
I hope, General Shelton, that you'll have something for the record on this, because I have to go answer this roll call.
GEN. SHELTON: Well, thank you, Senator Byrd, and let me say that I have not seen the report. However, I certainly agree that this is an extremely important issue. And I would want to have all the facts laid out and make sure that we responded to your question in as accurate and timely a manner as we could. I also would say that we need to be able to track. We need to be able to make sure that the funds that have been allocated are, in fact, accounted for in the proper
The one thing that I do see that indicates that -- I could believe the funds went to the intended purpose, has been in the readiness rate since '99, where they have been -- a lot of our readiness rates were suffering drastically. That was particularly true in some of our aviation --
SEN. BYRD: Well, I'm complaining about that. If the O&M accounts are suffering badly, tell us about it, but don't tell us that this money will be spent for spare parts when it ends up that the General Accounting Office can only track 8 percent of the $1.1 billion for spare parts.
GEN. SHELTON: Yes, sir. As you indicated, Senator Byrd, in your statement, the funds in the O&M account actually do provide for spare parts on the day-to-day basis, and I think that the readiness rates that we have seen turn around would indicate that a large amount of that money went to its -- if not all of it -- went to its intended purpose.
SEN. BYRD: The question isn't about that at all. We can go around and around on the head of a pin all day, but this ought not to happen.
GEN. SHELTON: Yes, sir. I agree.
SEN. BYRD: If Congress is going to be asked for monies for spare parts and we earmark it for that purpose, then it ought to be used for that purpose, and the department ought to be able to show that it was used for that purpose.
Now, we're up against a very tight budget here and our domestic needs are being -- are not being met. And the president's budget, for the most part, the supplemental is going to be defense. And not one thin dime is being added, as far as I'm concerned, in that appropriations bill today, not one thin dime is being added to the president's request. And I'm going to do everything I can to help him get that money, but there's got to be a responsibility here. And I'll guarantee you're going to be asked the questions when you come here, if you don't follow these earmarks for defense, when the agency requests this money -- I didn't request it – for spare parts. There has to be better bookkeeping and better accounting.
So if the president's going to narrow his budget down to where he's going to ask for about 7 percent increase for defense and less than 4 percent for non-defense, then I want the president and the administration to be sure it does its bookkeeping right. I want to help the Defense Department. I'm as interested in the security of this country as anybody else, but we've got to have better accountability. Whether it's Democrat or Republican doesn't bother me. We're all in this together. And I thank you very much. Thank you, Mr. Secretary.
Mr. Warner, I'm going to go vote. Did you vote before you --
SEN. WARNER: Yes, my good friend and neighbor state, I did vote early and so that I could carry on in this hearing, and therefore I'd utilize our time with these two very valuable witnesses.
SEN. BYRD: Yes. Thank you very much.
SEN. WARNER: I thank my colleague from West Virginia.
SEN. BYRD: Thank you, Mr. Secretary.
SEN. WARNER: I welcome, Mr. Secretary, the opportunity to visit with you again this morning. And General Shelton, I apologize I wasn't here earlier. I had a long-standing engagement to address Mothers Against Drunk Driving. And I tell you, I don't know of any organization that's trying harder to remedy a problem which indeed, unfortunately, afflicts those in uniform all throughout this country.
Mr. Secretary, I love the military history, as do you. We've talked many times together about days in the past that we have shared, and I want to read you a quote of I think one of our great heroes that we respect greatly, and that's General Eisenhower. He was asked shortly after World War II the following question about warfare. He was asked about when we might expect another engagement of some magnitude, right on the heels of World War II, and he replied as following: "I hope there will be no more warfare, but if and when such a tragedy as war visits us again, it is always going to happen under circumstances, at places and under conditions different from those you expect or plan for," end quote.
You're trying, in my judgment, to do the right thing, and that is make a very intensive review of this nation's strategy, match it to our current force structure, and -- I think quite properly -- take, I think you might say, drastic moves to restructure those forces to meet future contingencies. And you're doing so with the advice and counsel of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the other chiefs and other military leaders.
You're embarked on a very courageous mission, my friend. We've known each other these many years, beginning with our service under a previous administration almost a quarter of a century ago. But in the 23 years I've been on this committee, and I've had the privilege of hearing from and learning from many secretaries of Defense, I think you've tackled the most arduous program of any that I've been privileged to know and work with during these years. So I wish you luck, and you're going to have my support.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Thank you, Senator.
SEN. WARNER: But I think we should come to this question of -- and I think it's proper to address the two major-theater wars standard, and sizing U.S. military forces has been a vigorous debate for many years. But underlying -- as I've listened to military experts in and out of uniform during these many years, the underlying predicate of that standard has been it acted as a deterrence throughout the world.
Now that we acknowledge that our force structure's going to change, have we lessened that underlying power of deterrence that has projected -- been projected by the United States for these many years?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Senator Warner, I thank you for your generous comment.
I would respond to that very important and difficult question this way. Sometimes when people use the word "deterrence," what comes to mind is mutually assured destruction, in a narrow sense -- that is to say, the ability of the United States and the Soviet Union to destroy each other through the use of nuclear weapons.
But of course, when you use it, you mean something much deeper and broader. You're looking at deterrence across the spectrum, and there are lots of things that deter.
There's no question having the capability to conduct two major regional conflicts has had a healthy deterrent effect. However, it is also true that investing for the future and developing capabilities to deal with emerging threats has a deterrent effect -- a deterrent effect in two respects. It can have a deterrent effect in persuading people that it's not in their interest to use capabilities against us, because we have capabilities. It also in some cases can dissuade them from even developing those capabilities, because it becomes clear to them that they'd be throwing good money after bad.
Second, there are -- as we looked at this process, the group, it became very clear that there are more than simply operational risks and deterrents because of forces. We've been doing a great many smaller-scale contingencies, for example. A presence around the world. That also contributes to the deterrent.
I was given a list from General Shelton. I don't know quite where it is here, but it's called a series of vignettes, and they are just a host of things that -- here it is -- that we do besides prepare for two major regional conflicts. I'll just zip through them.
SEN. WARNER: I'll interrupt to just state we'll put that in the record at this spot in its entirety, together with my more lengthy opening statement. And I thank you.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Good. Good.
Humanitarian interventions. Peace accord implementations. Follow-on peace operations. Interpositional peacekeeping. Foreign humanitarian assistance. Domestic disaster relief. Consequence management. No-fly zone. Maritime intercept operations. Counterdrug. Noncombatant evacuations. Shows of forces and strikes. Now, that's what we've been doing, and those things, too, I think, in a way contribute to deterrence.
SEN. WARNER: Well, that comes to the follow-on question. I think it's the desire of our president -- and you will implement that -- to cut back on the volume of such participation. Now we read this morning about Macedonia, and I think that's a correct decision on behalf of our government to be a partner in that. And by the way, they applied an entirely new name to that type of intervention we're going to have over there. At least I hadn't seen it before.
So I'm just asking again, this deterrence, are we not going to cut back on some of those as a matter of policy?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I think that as a practical matter, because we have not been organized and arranged to deal with these type of things, they have been very stressing on the force. And possibly General Shelton would want to comment on that. We do them, and we do them well, but there has to be a limit to the number of things one can do.
GEN. SHELTON: As the secretary has indicated, Senator Warner, I think that the most important thing to come out of this QDR -- and the stage has been set now by the terms of reference that the secretary has referred to - is that we get the strategy and force structure in balance that we have today. We've got too much strategy, too little force structure, as the secretary has indicated, through the number of things that we have been doing. As a part of the review -
SEN. WARNER: And that imbalance has been for some period of time, has it not?
GEN. SHELTON: It has been for some period of time, but it has gotten in many cases progressive -- as you recall, back in '97 when we started the downsizing of the force out of the '97 QDR, which is where our Shape, Respond, Prepare strategy came -- the force as it started coming down, certain elements of that force in particular started moving into the category of low-density/high-demand types of force structure. We have more of that now than we had back in '97, for sure, some 32 types of units or capabilities.
And so part of the Quadrennial Defense Review is going to be to make sure we get the balance back, that we have a strategy that can be carried out by whatever force structure it is we decide that we want, and an iterative process that makes sure that when we decide what our strategy should be for the future, as the secretary has talked about, that we have the force structure in balance with –
SEN. WARNER: Let me quickly -- my time. In working with -- and I shall not name any specifically -- the chiefs, but -- (aside) I didn't give an opening statement, so I just might take a little additional time -- (returning) I found reluctance in years past to acknowledge what this secretary and president is bringing to the forefront, that mismatch, and not only acknowledge it, but put it in as a reality, an enunciation by this country of a new strategy.
Now, walk us through a little bit of the discussions in the tank on this issue, because it's been my recollection that the tank -- I use that respectfully, that term -- has vigorously adhered to keeping the prior public enunciation of our capabilities, even though there was a mismatch. What changed this time among the chiefs to now support the secretary's change?
GEN. SHELTON: Well I think, Senator Warner, that we may be getting the cart in front of the horse a little bit in that the terms of reference, as they are laid out right now, have within the terms certain types of military capabilities that this nation would need to have.
SEN. WARNER: "Need to have"?
GEN. SHELTON: Would potentially need to have.
SEN. WARNER: Do not have now, but must get?
GEN. SHELTON: Or that we have a capability that we want to try to preserve as a part of the future, for the future. That will emerge as the strategy. And as the secretary said, something that he would come back to you on. As a part of that strategy, we need to make sure -- part of the QDR, that we look at the types of structure we have and that we can carry it out. Let me give you one example.
As you know, we have a -- as we've talked about before with this committee, our major theater war capabilities are really only one in the area of strategic lift. We can move forces into one area, but in order to fight in a second one, we also have to have the capability to swing forces back in the other direction. How much force structure you have to have ultimately can be determined by what you envision as the end state in either one of those two regions and, therefore, that will determine the amount of risk you've got with your force to be able to do more than one thing at one time.
For example, if you just wanted, as we were able to do -- or as we did in Desert Storm, to restore the Kuwaiti border, that takes one set of forces. If you want to be able to defend in place on the Kuwaiti border, that's another set. If you want to have to go beyond that, it gets to be substantially more.
SEN. WARNER: General, I've got to go to a second question.
Let's talk a little bit about missile defense, Mr. Secretary. Again, I think our president, together with your support, has taken the right initiatives to explore technologies, a range of technologies beyond what previous presidents have explored, staying within the parameters of the ABM Treaty.
My specific question is as follows: I think our president is undertaking, personally, in his last visit to Europe, as well as prior thereto with emissaries from State and Defense, to consult with our allies and lay a foundation for eventual negotiations with Russia that, hopefully, will enable us to devise a new framework, whether it's amendments to the ABM Treaty or an entirely new framework, such that we can move ahead with a wider range of technologies to provide for the limited missile defense which I believe, and the president believes, is essential to this country.
Now, we're at the juncture where you're going to send up the '02 budget amendment with specifics. In my judgment, we cannot get out ahead in any way of the existing terms of the ABM Treaty until the president has, hopefully successfully, worked out with Russia amendments and a new framework. Could you advise us as to how the '02 is going to address the president's initiatives to expand the type of systems to address the limited missile defense threat and at the same time have Congress act on '02? But in my view, we will act on '02 before finalization, in all probability, of the negotiations between our government and Russia.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Yes, sir. The president, as you know, in his visit to Europe, in his meeting with President Putin indicated that the ABM Treaty in its present form restricts the kind of research and development that he believes is desirable and appropriate for this country if we are to avoid a situation where the Saddam Husseins or Kim Jong Ils of the world can hold our population senators -- centers hostage.
What the '02 budget will have is some money for missile defense research and development and testing. It is not clear which piece of those various research projects will move forward at what pace. There are legal disagreements among the lawyers as to what extent the treaty constrains certain types of things. I'm not a lawyer; my attitude about it is we need to get with the Russians, let them know that we plan to establish a new framework with them, we need to move beyond the treaty, and we need to be free to perform certain kinds of research and development activities. The president told President Putin that, and he asked Secretary
Powell and the foreign minister of Russia, and he asked me and the defense minister of Russia to begin some meetings to discuss those and get up on the table the elements of a conceivable new framework. And we're at the very beginning stages of that.
SEN. WARNER: Well, does it come out of phase with the need for Congress to act on the '02? In other words, it seems to me we've got to go ahead and act on the '02 within the parameters of the Cochran statute, which is the '99 controlling law --
SEC. RUMSFELD: Sure.
SEN. WARNER: -- and that in all probability the progress that this administration hopefully will make on a new framework can only be addressed in the '03.
SEC. RUMSFELD: No. I would think the '02 budget with its -- some portion for missile defense ought not to be a problem in that regard and that it can be acted on by the Congress with the understanding that we're in discussions, which is the second part of that Cochran statute, as I recall --
SEN. WARNER: Right.
SEC. RUMSFELD: -- that we're in discussions with the Russians about how we can establish a different framework and free ourselves of unnecessary restrictions with respect to the testing issues.
SEN. WARNER: I see my time's up. Thank you.
SEN. LEVIN: I gave Senator Warner some additional time because he did not have an opening statement as ranking member, but I did announce we're going tohave to abide by a five-minute rule because the secretary has to leave a few minutes after 11:00.
On the missile defense issue, which Senator Warner just raised with you, I want to be real clear here on what you're telling us, because I think it is the same thing that General Kadish told us last week, but I want to be doubly sure, because this is really an important issue.
What General Kadish told us last week, he's -- as you know, but perhaps those who are listening may not all know that he's the director of the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization. What he told us is, relative to the program that he is going to recommend for this year and his assessment of the various parts of the national missile defense program, he said that if all of his recommendations for missile defense are adopted and implemented for the year 2002 that there would be no violation of the ABM Treaty by those actions. Is that your understanding?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I have not heard him say that, nor has he briefed that to me.
SEN. LEVIN: Do you have any understanding on that issue?
SEC. RUMSFELD: No, I don't. My understanding is exactly what I said to Senator Warner.
SEN. LEVIN: Which doesn't relate then to the issue that I just raised? If General Kadish is the general who is in charge of the program and he is fashioning and developing a new research and development approach to missile defense to test and evaluate different approaches that had not been considered previously, if he says that he sees nothing in the immediate future that is going to be a problem with respect to the treaty, that is the kind of information I then would take to the lawyers who know an awful lot more about the treaty than I do, and I suspect even more than General Kadish, and --
SEC. RUMSFELD: I think he's already taken that to the lawyers.
SEN. LEVIN: Has he?
SEC. RUMSFELD: And I would have to get advice and counsel on that. I personally -- I mean, I don't think the '02 budget is a problem, but I think --
SEN. LEVIN: In that regard.
SEC. RUMSFELD: In that regard. What I think is that we need to be moving ahead with the research and development necessary to understand what we are going to be capable of doing to deploy a limited missile defense system, as Senator Warner said. Simultaneously, we need to be working with the Russians and establishing a framework that will permit -- that will get us beyond a treaty that is against missile defense. If you want to --
SEN. LEVIN: The key issue -- the key issue here, though, is that it's very possible, even pursuing your approach, that there is no conflict at least for a year between those two paths.
SEN. WARNER: That's why I said '03.
SEN. LEVIN: And that is why Senator Warner said '03, and I thought you were answering Senator Warner, but -- I just want to be real clear on this. General Kadish says there is no conflict in 2002 with his recommendations, following the advice of the lawyers. I just want to -- you do not yet have that analysis, and that's your answer?
SEC. RUMSFELD: That's correct.
SEN. LEVIN: Okay. Now, after the summit meeting, President Putin indicated that if the -- the Russian president indicated that if the United States proceeded unilaterally to deploy a national missile defense system, that Russia would eventually add multiple warheads to its ICBMs, something which we worked very hard to eliminate in the START II Treaty.
Do you believe that if that in fact occurred, if Russia in response to a unilateral decision on our part to move out of the ABM Treaty -- if they in response to that said, "Well, then we're going to do the multiple warheads on those missiles," do you believe that that would be something that would not be good for our national interest?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Mr. Chairman, it seems to me that President Putin and various Russian officials have said a lot of things over a period of --
SEN. LEVIN: Assuming what he said is true, do you think that's in our national interest, that they MIRV their warheads?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Could I walk into that with a preface?
SEN. LEVIN: Yeah.
SEC. RUMSFELD: They've said a lot of things, and it's part of this negotiation process. Where they will end up, I don't know.
I think it's a mistake to take out a single element like that in isolation and examine it and say that it's good, bad, or indifferent. And the reason I feel that way is because if they simultaneously did something else -- that is to say, reduce substantially other warheads -- and ended up feeling that it was more efficient or cost-efficient to do that, and the net aggregate number was lower, one might say, "Is that bad?" I don't know. I have to look at the total picture of it, and I think anyone looking at it would have to answer that way.
I would add that the whole construct is a Cold War construct. It's -- the Cold War is over. Those treaties were between two hostile nations.
SEN. LEVIN: But it's still in our interest that they reduce the number of nuclear warheads, is it not?
SEC. RUMSFELD: That I can say yes --
SEN. LEVIN: It's still in our interest that they not MIRV their missiles. Is that not correct, generally?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Generally, the reduction of total numbers of warheads -- what the mix might be is a separate issue --
SEN. LEVIN: All right.
SEC. RUMSFELD: -- but the total number, I would agree with you.
SEN. LEVIN: And is it relevant to us what their response would be to a unilateral withdrawal from the ABM Treaty on our part? Is it at least relevant for us to consider what their response would be?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Well, that's why these discussions and negotiations and meetings have been taking place.
SEN. LEVIN: All right. Because -- would you agree it's possible, at least, that they could respond in a way to a unilateral withdrawal which would not be in our interest, that would make us less secure? Is at least that a possibility worth considering?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I think every possibility's worth considering, Senator. But I think -- I don't yet understand what it means when I read that someone says that a treaty that is 20 years old -- 30 years old and prohibits missile defense is the centerpiece of an entire fabric of arrangements from the Cold War between two hostile states in the year 2001. It is not -- the Cold War is over. We're not hostile states. They are going to be reducing their nuclear weapons regardless of what we do. We're going to be reducing our nuclear weapons to some level, regardless of what they do. And it just seems to me that we've still got our heads wrapped
around the Cold War language and rhetoric, and it's a mistake.
SEN. LEVIN: I think it would be useful for you to at least attempt to understand why the response is that way. Whether you agree with it or not, I think --
SEC. RUMSFELD: Sure, absolutely. And you would in those discussions.
SEN. LEVIN: Yeah. Very good. Senator Sessions?
SEN. JEFF SESSIONS (R-AL): Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
And Mr. Secretary, I appreciate very much your commitment to reviewing carefully our entire defense strategy, to ask where we are, what our threat is today, what it will likely be tomorrow and in the years to come. It's time for us to do that.
I know that it makes everyone nervous. I know those in industry, in Defense Department, or in committees in Congress, all of which have special fiefdoms and interests, get very nervous. But it's time to do that.
I hope to be able to support you. Perhaps I won't agree with everything that your committee and the president suggests, but I hope to be able to support that. And I do affirm that you're on the right course. And it makes me feel particularly good to know that when you come here and ask for a policy for the next decades, that you have thought it through, you sought the advice and the best people that you can get, and given it extensive review. If this had been a short, cursory review, I could not have the same confidence that I expect to have in your conclusions in the future. And I do think it's time for us to change.
War is, unfortunately, just around the corner. It's always a potential threat for us. And we've got to think about where we are in the future.
You talked a good bit about missile defense, and you chaired the commission on that, the bipartisan commission that unanimously recommended that we move forward to deploy a national missile defense system. And we have made extraordinary progress. The PAC-3, the Patriot missiles are exceedingly effective. And I don't think anyone denies that they can direct hit collision, destroy incoming missiles. The theater missile, the THAAD, is proving its mettle, and national missile defense I'm confident it's just a matter of moving forward and bringing forth this technology that we now have into a practical combination of programs to make it work. So I salute you for that.
It has been said recently, actually in a meeting that we had yesterday with the NATO secretary-general, that you would deploy a national missile defense system even if it wouldn't work. Is that your position?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Senator, first, thank you for those words. You're right, change is hard. And any time people ask tough questions, people get nervous, and there's no question but there's a stir as a result of the questions we've been asking.
The care that's gone into this process has been extensive. And as Senator Warner made the reference "your proposal," implying it's mine, it isn't. I had no proposal. We've spent dozens of hours with the chiefs and with the chairmen and with the senior civilian officials, and the product that has come out is not the brain child of any one person.
I'm sure you would agree with that, General Shelton.
GEN. SHELTON: Yes, sir.
SEC. RUMSFELD: It is a product that is still in its formative stage, and it certainly -- I wouldn't want to suggest for a minute that it came out of my head.
Deploying missile defense if it doesn't work. And I'm glad you asked it; it is a wonderful question. And you're quite right, I've been badly quoted on that.
First of all, the reason I said that was that I was asked a question as to can you imagine a circumstance where you would deploy something that had not been fully tested -- not that it wouldn't work, but it had not been fully tested. And the answer was yes. The United States has been doing that for a long time.
And certainly in the gulf war the general could give you an example of a developmental program that was in its early stages and was seized from that developmental program, brought into the theater, used very effectively on behalf of the country -- not tested, not deployed, but used.
And so I would say two things: yes, it is perfectly proper to use in a conflict, in unusual circumstance developmental programs that have not been fully tested, that have not been -- reached all their milestones, that have not reached their so-called initial operating capability date.
Second, I have asked the question, Would you deploy something that doesn't work in a different sense, that it doesn't work all the time? And what good would that be? And I have said of course I would be delighted to deploy something. I mean, that's like saying if your car doesn't work all the time, you don't want a car, you want to walk. We don't have a weapons system that works all the time. I don't know of one. I don't think there is one. Indeed, the dumb weapons have a very small percentage of -- actually, the ones that you hook in, let go, and go for something, the total number of times they achieve that is a relatively small fraction. The smart ones are still not up at a hundred percent, likely not up in the 90s.
Now, it varies from weapon to weapon. But the idea that you can't do something until it is perfect would mean that we would not have any weapons systems on the face of the earth.
SEN. SESSIONS: Thank you. Well said. And I agree with that. I would just say with regard to the Russians, it seems to me exceedingly unwise for us to bind ourselves irrevocably to a treaty that, I think --lawyers tell me, is not binding on us strictly as a legal matter, with a nation, a hostile nation, the Soviet Union, to just absolutely bind ourselves to that. Would not that make it more difficult for us to negotiate a new relationship with the Russians if we took the position that we're just absolutely never going to violate this treaty, when even within its own corners it allows us to violate it with notice?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Yes. I think the minute you enter into a set of discussions and you preemptively give the other side a veto over the outcome, you disadvantage yourself enormously. The president, of course, did not give the Russians a veto. In his meetings he pointed out that -- properly, that Russia would not have a veto on, for example, NATO enlargement, nor would they have a veto on this, because the treaty permits a six-month notification and withdrawal from the
treaty. What the president said was not that the Russians would have a veto or anyone would have a veto, but rather that he wants to enter into discussions so they can establish a new framework and get beyond the treaty because the treaty is inhibiting and preventing the United States from protecting its population.
SEN. SESSIONS: Well, I think it's very critical that this Congress does not place a veto on the president in this matter. And I thank you for your leadership on this very important matter.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Thank you, sir.
SEN. LEVIN: Now, let me read the order here of my recognition of senators, and I've given some wrong information before based on the information I had. So -- on the Democratic side, Senator Reed, Bill Nelson, Landrieu, Ben Nelson, Akaka, Cleland, Lieberman, Dayton. That is the order on this list. And I apologize for giving some erroneous information.
On the Republican side, Senator Thurmond was here, and then next would be Senator Smith, Allard, Collins, Bunning, Roberts.
SEN. ROBERTS: Thank you. I could be Thurmond, if you want -- (laughter).
SEN. LEVIN: No comment. (Laughter.)
SEN. LIEBERMAN: Mr. Chairman, may I say that I'm privileged to know Strom Thurmond, and Senator Roberts -- (laughter).
SEN. SESSIONS: You went to high school together. (Laughter.)
SEN. LEVIN: All right. Now, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, there's about at least 10 of us here. We've got about 50 minutes, so we just have to abide by the five-minute rule. And we will now call upon Senator Reed.
SEN. JACK REED (D-RI): Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
And thank you, Mr. Secretary, for your testimony. And I listened to your testimony, and you have laid out a daunting set of challenges for the Department of Defense and, I think everyone would also conclude, a very expensive set of challenges for the Department of Defense. And one of the issues I find somewhat disturbing is, the 10- year budget forwarded by the president and adopted by the Congress ignores essentially the cost of facing those challenges.
Unless you are proposing to be able to do all the things you want to do with very minimal increases in the current defense budget, the money has not been included in the budget. In fact, what has been included, as we all know, is a significant tax reduction. And now we're facing issues of real national security concerns with diminished resources and, frankly, without within that budget plan appropriate attention to those challenges.
So I wonder, what are you going to do?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Senator, let me say three things, and I'll try to be brief. I recognize the time constraint.
First, the '01 supplemental is up before the Congress. The '02 should be coming up very soon. There's no question but that there is a tension between demands for various different types of programs, including defense. We're going to have to make trade-offs between current capability, investing for the future and investing in the people.
I will also add that I think we're going to have to come to the Congress and ask for some freedom to manage; that is to say, some relief from some of the restrictions and inhibitions and restraints that cost money, that make managing that department considerably more difficult. And I am convinced we can find savings in the department if we are given the ability to save the money.
So, it's going to be a combination of the tension between the other various things that exist plus finding savings and plus getting an increase and plus making trade-offs between the present and the future.
SEN. REED: Let me follow up, Mr. Secretary, by trying to ask you now -- and I know you're in the midst of this review, but as someone who has been a long-time observer and participant, you have pretty good instincts. How much do you think you can save, and then how much extra do you think you need to do what you have described in general concepts today?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I'm not in a position to answer that question. I think I will be able to answer it during this year.
Again, and I've said this here at the committee before, we don't know the answer to this. I can't prove it, but every expert who's looked at the base structure says it's 25 percent too big, and if we had the ability to make some adjustments in the base structure, there's no question that over a period of time -- not immediately, but over a period of time, we could save some money.
We have a large number of things that we're doing inside the Department of Defense inefficiently that could be moved out to the commercial sector and privatized. I know that. The three service secretaries know that, and we are determined to do that. There are some other things that can be done.
As everyone on this committee knows, some important steps have been made in privatizing housing, for example, and using leverage and getting many more units than you would get if you just bought dollar for dollar. The same thing is true conceivably with respect to forward-funding on shipbuilding. There are a range of things that we're examining, and we'll be coming before the committee and we'll hopefully be able to quantify it later.
SEN. REED: Mr. Secretary, I appreciate that and frankly I think, given your expertise as a manager, you will probably wring out every type of saving that's conceivable in the department. But my suspicion also is that you will be coming up here and asking, over a five-year plan, hundreds of billions of dollars that have not been provided for within the context of the budget, which will be a serious, serious issue. And I recognize, as you do, that we don't want to launch into major decisions without careful review, but the needs of the Department of Defense of that magnitude are not a surprise to anyone on this committee and, I think, even in
Washington. So I'm a little bit still puzzled and disturbed why that was not provided for within the budget.
Let me just one final question, Mr. Secretary, and it goes to your testimony where you make a behavioral assumption about the bad old Soviet Union and the equally bad or even worse present threats, where you say quite definitively that there are differences between the Soviet Union and say, for example, North Korea. And I, you know, growing up in the '50s and '60s, I don't think that any one sort of slacked off in criticizing the dictatorial nature, the obsession of the Soviet Union for expansion, their conspiratorial nature, and it's -- what's happened? Why are we now sort of more disturbed about North Korea than you seem to imply we were back in the '50s, '60s or '70s?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I didn't mean to suggest that, if I misspoke in some way. There is no question but that the Cold War was an enormously difficult period, a very tense period. The standoff was a dangerous one, both from the standpoint of nuclear conflict and conventional conflict. And the expansionism of the Soviet Union was real and active throughout the world on multiple continents.
The difference I tried to draw is that mutual assured destruction, when you're dealing with the Soviet Union of old, is different than, I think, mutual assured destruction when you're dealing with a Kim Jong Il or a Saddam Hussein. They do not have -- to the extent they have very powerful weapons, they do not have politburos, they do not have inhibitions and restraints on them. They have vastly more personal, individual ability to act at their own whim and determination, and do it repeatedly. They do things that we consider are totally outside the scope of human behavior with respect to their own people.
They have used gas on their own people in Iraq, we know that. We know that in North Korea they're perfectly willing to starve their population to feed their war machine. That was my point, and not that in either case they were nice people.
SEN. REED: I did not assume, and I don't think you were trying to make that point.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Right.
SEN. REED: But we are basing some significant policy judgments about behavioral perceptions of regimes, and I think we have to do a little bit more work on sharpening those behavioral perceptions.
SEC. RUMSFELD: I agree completely.
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you. We're just going to have to move on.
SEN. BOB SMITH (R-NH): Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
Good morning, Mr. Secretary, General Shelton.
Mr. Secretary, I'd just like to pick up for a moment on what Senator Sessions was talking about and commend you for the task that you're undertaking with the complete review of the Defense Department. It's a huge bureaucracy; some would call it perhaps Byzantine in its nature. But it's tasked with really the most important function, in my view, that the government has, which is to defend our country.
And frankly, I don't think you've been praised enough for trying to ensure that the dollars are spent wisely and that our military policies are coherent and answerable to the taxpayers, as well as to the needs of defending our country. But I think you understand that you have to ensure that the military can meet any -- any -- threat, based on not necessarily the intention of another nation -- we don't know what the intention may be, as Colin Powell used to say -- but on the
capability of that nation.
So I hope that those of us in Congress, even those who disagree from time to time on certain aspects of it, will help you rather than to impede or belittle what you're trying to do.
I must say, as I think Senator Sessions alluded to, it's frustrating for all of us not to know what's going on over there. We don't -- we're not getting any leaks. But that's a compliment to you, and I hope that -- keep those people on board -- (chuckles) -- because they're doing a good job for you!
I also want to just make one other statement before I ask a question on national missile defense. I think, with good intentions, there are going to be those who are going to really go after you on this issue. And you can defend yourself without me doing it for you, but I believe with all my heart that when the books are written and we look back on this era 20, 30, 40 years from now, or maybe even less, you're going to be right that this is a system that will work. It needs to be tested. We test for cancer; we haven't found a cure for it yet, but we haven't stopped testing, nor should we. And so I believe fervently that this will work, and I think you're going to
be proven correct. And so I would just ask you to stay the course.
One question on space, which I know is a great interest of yours. On the position of undersecretary of Defense for Space Information and Intelligence, have you made any progress on that in terms of when you might name a nominee, or if you plan to name a nominee in the near future for that position?
SEC. RUMSFELD: The current position is, as you know, an assistant secretary for C-cubed-I. And we have interviewed a number of people, and the president has not yet made an announcement with respect to a nomination. But we certainly recognize the importance.
The issue as to whether that ought to be an assistant secretary or an undersecretary, of course, was a subject that we talked about and was a matter for the Space Commission to address. The Space Commission, which I chaired, recommended an undersecretary, and that recommendation was made to the secretary of Defense. And I was then the secretary of Defense, and I have thus far decided not to make it an undersecretary. (Light laughter.) So I am fighting with myself, I am struggling.
I think the importance of space merits the undersecretary. On the other hand, I'm just darned reluctant to come to the Congress and say We need more higher grades and more superstructure. I want to find ways to reduce the superstructure.
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you.
Senator Bill Nelson.
SEN. BILL NELSON (D-FL): Mr. Secretary, you have a tough job. I think you're doing a good job --
SEC. RUMSFELD: Thank you, sir.
SEN. B. NELSON: -- and I have some very specific questions, questions that I asked your colleague, Secretary Powell, yesterday in the Foreign Relations Committee, of which he deferred a number of these questions to you. (Laughter.)
SEC. RUMSFELD: I may refer some back to him. (Laughter.)
SEN. B. NELSON: In the various stages of a launched missile, which is really a rocket, as we go about testing different systems, I question whether or not the testing is, in fact, an abrogation of the ABM Treaty. So let's take, for example, what you refer to as terminal phase, what I would call the descent phase. Is the testing of the present system that we have, where we're launching from California to Kwajalein Island, is the continuation of that testing an abrogation of the ABM Treaty?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I am so old-fashioned I am reluctant to talk about things that I lack reasonable knowledge and certainty of. My understanding is --
First of all, as I've said, I'm not a lawyer. The treaty is complex. There are debates on all sides as to what it means. There are people who are strict constructionists and think they should stay tight with it; there are a lot of people who think that you should move out and reach to its limits. My personal view is I'm kind of straightforward; I'd like to just get the Russians to say, Look, come on, we've got to test, and we don't want to have someone accuse us of breaking the
treaty, and let's not get into a legal -- lawyer's argument over the thing.
I am told that the program that the Clinton administration was on, which is part of what you're referring to, I believe, would have required an amendment or some relief with respect to the treaty.
SEN. B. NELSON: I'm not referring to the Clinton, I'm referring to the testing that we have underway, in this particular case the kinetic energy test, and I don't see that it's a violation. Secretary Powell couldn't say that it was a violation.
He deferred it to you.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Yeah.
SEN. BILL NELSON: And yet we hear this mantra coming out of the administration about how we've got to change the ABM Treaty.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Oh, I see the distinction. Okay. I am sure that if the current testing plan were to violate the treaty, that I would have been told, because we would want to have discussed it with the Russians, and we would -- to the extent necessary, would want to have advised them at least six months in advance, so no one could say we'd done anything wrong.
Now the mantra coming out of the administration is this. We don't know what the best approach to missile defense will be. We suspect that the treaty is restrictive on testing anything that's mobile -- at sea, in the air.
Now if that's true -- and I believe it to be true -- and if we are convinced that we owe it to our country to proceed with testing some of those things at some pace where they're ready to be tested, then obviously we're going to have to get relief under the treaty.
SEN. BILL NELSON: All right. Well, let's take another example, then. You talk about mobile. For example, in the mid-course phase, if we are developing a laser that would be on a 747, the testing in that research and development -- is that, in your opinion, an abrogation of the treaty?
SEC. RUMSFELD: That, Senator, is a very difficult question, I am told by the experts. The airborne laser program preceded any thought of its use with – I believe, preceded any thought of its use with respect to missile defense.
An airplane is mobile. If you decide a program is to be tested for a purpose other than you had originally planned, and that purpose is missile defense, I would think one could argue that it would begin to push up against the treaty. But again, I am the wrong person to be asking. I've got people looking at this.
My personal view is, we ought not to worry about the legal pieces; we ought to go get a new framework with the Russians that -- establish a regime, an approach, an understanding that makes sense for the future.
SEN. BILL NELSON: Well, let me give you another example, a very specific --
SEC. RUMSFELD: (Laughs.) Where's Colin Powell when I need him? (Soft laughter.)
SEN. BILL NELSON: Take, for example, on the asset phase, what you have broken down into the boost and the asset phase. And it has been suggested that our existing systems on ships of the Aegis would be the capability of knocking down such a weapon that would be fired.
Now those are on mobile ships. Is that an abrogation of the ABM Treaty?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Well, I'm going to be careful again, and I'm just going to answer the same way. It's my understanding that the treaty restricts testing of mobile anti-ballistic missile capabilities. And the -- an Aegis ship is certainly mobile.
SEN. BILL NELSON: Mr. Chairman, what I would love to do, since obviously we're all rushed here, is to have a chance to get into this in depth with whomever the secretary would designate, whether it be in open session or closed session, at your discretion, because where I'm going with this is that if we have a robust research and development, with robust testing, my opinion, I don't see that this is an abrogation of the treaty. And clearly, in my opinion, we need, for the sake of the defense of the country, to proceed with robust research and development, but you can't deploy something that's not developed.
And so all of the wringing of hands of the abrogation of the treaty seems to me to be a little premature before something has been developed. And I would certainly appreciate it very much, Mr. Chairman, if we could get into this in depth.
SEN. LEVIN: We will keep the record open for questions to the secretary. We will be having hearings on this subject, both open and closed, over the next few months. And -- but the first opportunity will be that we could ask questions for the record because of the time crunch that we're now in, and we'll follow that.
SEN. SUSAN COLLINS (R-ME): Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Welcome, Mr. Secretary, General Shelton. There are many issues I'd like to discuss with you this morning, but because of time constraints, which are so strict, I'm only going to be able to bring up one.
Mr. Secretary, it seems that every week brings yet another report of yet another study that has been launched or is underway at the Pentagon. You and I have discussed before the confusing and conflicting signals from the Pentagon about the future of two major developmental programs for the 21st century that this committee has strongly supported, and that is the Navy's DD-21 Destroyer, and CVNX Carrier programs.
I want to briefly summarize a series of events that have occurred in just the last week that are yet another example of my concern about these confusing and conflicting signals.
On June 12th, retired Air Force General McCarthy presented the conclusions and recommendations of the Transformation Panel. The general's prepared presentation of 21 slides contained no mention whatsoever of either the DD-21 or the CVNX programs. However, in a subsequent session with reporters, in response to a specific question, General McCarthy stated, quote, "We were not persuaded that they were truly transformational." End quote.
Now, six days later, press accounts quoted General McCarthy as clarifying that the Transformation Panel had not recommended the cancellation of either the DD-21 or the CVNX program; rather, the general said, it reflects a recommendation not to accelerate these programs or increase funding.
In the same press account, retired Admiral Stan Arthur, who served with General McCarthy on the Transformation Panel, stated, "I certainly consider the DD-21 and CVNX to be transformational platforms, as well as enablers for follow-on Joint Force deployments." And he suggested that the two programs were not evaluated by the panel and that the conclusions of the panel should not be interpreted as a recommendation that either program be delayed or cancelled.
Similarly, although the Navy continues to award contracts related to the development of the DD-21, it unexpectedly and indefinitely delayed the downselect decision last month just days before the final offers were due.
Mr. Secretary, there's widespread agreement among all the experts that I talk to, among all the naval leaders, that there needs to be more stability in our approach to shipbuilding. And yet the actions of the Pentagon appear to be creating, instead, more chaos and more uncertainty.
I'd like to have you comment on that, and I would also like to know did the Transformation Panel in fact seriously evaluate the DD-21 and the CVNX or not?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Senator Collins, thank you for your question. You call for more stability to shipbuilding. Let me describe what I found, arriving from Chicago and becoming secretary of Defense. I found there is stability. We're funding shipbuilding at a rate which will move us smartly down to about 220 ships.
SEN. COLLINS: And this is of great concern, as we've discussed before.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Well, but that's -- there is a very stable policy that has evolved from this Congress and the executive branch over a period of time that we're building ships that will move us to 220. My personal view is that's not enough ships for the Navy.
With respect to the chaos you characterize, there is none. Any time that anyone asks a question, it's going to make people nervous. I felt that we needed to look at the shipbuilding program and the other programs, so we formed not a host of studies. But we formed an acquisition reform Study, which has reported to this committee; a management -- financial management, which has reported; missile defense, which has reported; morale/quality of life by Admiral Jeremiah, which has reported; space, which has reported; and transformation, which is the one you're referring to. We have three still underway; one on crisis management, one on
nuclear forces, and the one that we've just concluded on strategic review. We've delayed one on intelligence and one on metrics.
There is no mystery about these studies. There is not yet still another. But we have asked tough questions, and I intend to keep on asking tough questions, and I recognize that it's going to make people nervous.
The short answer on the weapon systems you've raised is that they will be addressed in the Quadrennial Defense Review and in the build for the '03 budget. I have not had briefings or presentations on any one of those weapon systems. We believe, correctly, I believe, that the way to begin this process is to look at the strategy, to look at the nature of the world we live in, and to see what our circumstance is and, therefore, what kinds of capabilities we need. We have now got the terms of reference for the Quadrennial Defense Review, and we're just beginning that process.
I have not -- I was not aware of the briefing by General McCarthy. What happens with a study is you get an outside group or an inside group, they have a variety of opinions, they offer their opinions, they make their opinions public, and they do not represent departmental decisions and they should not be taken as such, and people should not be nervous or concerned about them.
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you very much, Senator Collins.
Senator Ben Nelson.
SEN. BEN NELSON: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you, Mr. Secretary and General Shelton. It's good to see you again. My question is going to follow up on the question of development and deployment of a missile defense system, and it may apply to any kind of development and deployment of any other kind of weapons, whether they're dumb weapons, smart weapons, whatever they may be.
I guess I'm concerned about what the cost-versus-success ratio should be before we deploy something, if we're in the development phase. Obviously, the cost to deploy dumb weapons would seem to be rather low by comparison to smart weapons or to a missile defense system with laser capability, et cetera. Is there a way of deciding whether or not the deployment costs versus the success potential, is there a ratio that we look at? Does it have to be 50 percent successful, 45, 80 percent?
Obviously 100 percent is not an appropriate ratio, but probably a 20 percent success ratio is cost effective on dumb weapons because of the low cost, but at what level on the more expensive weapons is the ratio important, and have you tried to quantify what it might be?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I have not. The experts on ballistic missile defense have, and they have looked at the subject over, goodness --
SEN. BEN NELSON: And I don't mean to get into something that's a security issue here, either.
SEC. RUMSFELD: No, no. I understand. But they've been looking at these subjects over a period of more than two decades, I guess, now and no decision has been made to deploy, so it's clear that for whatever reasons, either the treaty or cost or technology, they have not found the right combination of things that have led to a agreement on deployment.
SEN. BEN NELSON: But I --
SEC. RUMSFELD: Your point is a good one.
SEN. BEN NELSON: Yeah.
SEC. RUMSFELD: There's no question but that if something is quite inexpensive, one is more willing to go ahead and make the investment and have that capability, even though its percentage effectiveness might be somewhat lower.
But in terms of having some magic formula, there just isn't one.
SEN. BEN NELSON: Well, I'd be very concerned if it was about 10 percent successful and we were looking at spending hundreds of billions of dollars that would then be taken away from other priorities within the Defense Department. So I would hope that as time goes by we might have more information about how successful it needs to be before we deploy it, because obviously the development side is based on trying to get it more successful, and improve the ratio so that we know that when we deploy it it's going to be 80 percent successful, 75 percent successful, and achieve some understanding before we move to that level.
But I'm not hearing discussion like that coming out or comments coming out of the Pentagon. I'm hearing more comments that it's like a scarecrow; it's worth putting up because it might be successful. Or, I've had one of my colleagues say, Well, if it saves us from one incoming missile, it'll be worth it.
Those are anecdotal, at best. What I would hope is that we would come down to some scientific basis, because I think it's a lot easier to talk about that. It's very difficult to argue against saving one city. Nobody wants to put it on those terms.
But we can't save one city with something that then makes us more vulnerable in other areas that are more likely to be open to attack.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Senator, I've seen those columnists who have made fun of me, calling it "the scarecrow approach" because I'm willing to deploy something that doesn't work. As we discussed earlier, practically nothing works perfectly in life.
And you're absolutely correct that there has to be a relationship between cost and benefit. And those calculations arrive basically at the time you're getting – you think your testing's worked out, and you're ready to begin talking about deployment of some kind. And that's where that calculation would come in.
SEN. BEN NELSON: Well, I'll feel very more -- much more comfortable if we can ultimately move to that kind of discussion. And perhaps it is a secured sort of discussion. I would like to have it, though, as we move forward.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Thank you, Senator.
SEN. BEN NELSON: Thank you.
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you, Senator Nelson.
SEN. JIM BUNNING (R-KY): Thank you.
First of all, I'd like to ask unanimous consent that my opening statement be put into the record.
SEN. LEVIN: It will be.
SEN. BUNNING: And I also would like to ask unanimous consent that an article in today's Chicago Tribune also be put into the record.
SEN. LEVIN: It will be made part of the record.
SEN. BUNNING: Thank you.
Secretary Rumsfeld, early in this administration, support was expressed for ending our involvement in Kosovo and bringing our troops home. Several months ago, I had the opportunity to visit some of the soldiers from the 101st Airborne at Fort Campbell. About 3,000 of them went on June 1st to Kosovo. They all expressed hesitation about the pending deployment to Kosovo, and their morale was not good. They asked why they were to be -- being deployed for peacekeeping activity. They didn't believe that was their mission.
I plan on visiting the 101st in August. What do I tell them when they ask me when they will be able to come home and when our peacekeeping activity will end?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Senator, when the U.S. forces were put in, there was not a deadline date set, nor has there been. The --
SEN. BUNNING: Not by the administration, but by the Congress there was. There were deadlines that were passed over by the administration.
SEC. RUMSFELD: I recall that with respect to Bosnia. I'm just not knowledgeable. I wasn't --
SEN. BUNNING: It was also on Kosovo.
SEC. RUMSFELD: I wasn't here at the time. (To staff.) Is that true? Do you know, John?
MR. : (Off mike.)
SEN. BUNNING: Well, we've had this discussion before, General, in our conference.
GEN. SHELTON: Yes, sir, we have.
And certainly I -- Senator Bunning, if I could just respond on the morale piece and the question of peacekeeping.
I just returned from over there this past month, and I can't speak --the (bill dated ?) and the 101st troops were in the process of starting to come in – but certainly what I have encountered on each of my relatively frequent visits into the region has been a great morale and a great sense of accomplishment from the troops that are performing the job there. And of course they're doing a magnificent job.
That doesn't get at the question of when it will end, but I think that as you understand, we have -- and as the secretary has said on many occasions, militarily we have provided the safe and secure environment to allow for the civil implementation pieces to be put into place and, as you know, that is the key to a long-term. It's also the key to us being able to pull all the troops out and not have it revert back; all the NATO troops coming out, to include the Americans. And that is taking a lot longer than it should and that has been the -- that has been the push I know that Secretary Rumsfeld has had since coming into office, and it's the right way ahead, from a military perspective. Until we fix that, we're in danger of the whole thing not being a success if we arbitrarily just pull the forces out.
SEN. BUNNING: Well, the article that I included in the record was in regards to Macedonia and the NATO alliance's willingness to send 5,000 additional troops into Macedonia to disarm the Albanian rebels. General Powell is quoted as not including the U.S. troops. My question to both of you, are U.S. troops going to be committed for that purpose and if so, for how long and at what cost to the American taxpayer?
SEC. RUMSFELD: The secretary of State was speaking for the president when he indicated that the United States supports the NATO process which is going forward. There has not been a specific request. Secretary Powell indicated that there is no commitment for U.S. forces to go into Macedonia.
We currently have, I think, somewhere around 5(00) to 700, depending on rotation, in-country that are basically the back office for the forces that are in Kosovo, and they are doing some variety of advisory-type assistance at one stage.
But I don't -- the president has not made any decision. The government of Macedonia has not requested NATO to come in. I think the only basis that the secretary-general of NATO yesterday indicated that NATO would go in would be not to go in and disarm, but rather to receive the weapons in a permissive environment, and he used the number, the possibility of total NATO forces of something in the neighborhood of 3,000, as I recall.
SEN. BUNNING: Last question. Do you believe -- General Shelton, I'll ask you -- do you believe it's wise to use combat forces for civil missions? In other words, the 101st is a combat-ready, probably the best in the country, best you have, and now we're using them to be police officers.
GEN. SHELTON: Sir, first of all, I think that it becomes as you know a policy issue about where our troops are used, but I would say that -- and I agree totally with your assessment. The 101st, the Screaming Eagles, are a great outfit; well-led, well-disciplined troops. As Secretary-General Kofi Annan said at one point, the best peacekeeper, in many cases, is a well-trained infantryman. But I think that what we have to guard against is the long-term deployments that tend to erode your combat effectiveness.
When the 101st goes in, the infantry portions of that outfit will be well-trained and ready to go.
Over a period of time, in six months that readiness for war fighting, for carrying out their really tough missions, like night live fires or night attacks, will go down
substantially, which will mean they'll have to be trained back up to par.
While they're there, their morale will be high. I'm confident. I haven't run into troops there yet who didn't feel -- have a great sense of mission accomplishment.
However, once we bring them out it will require a period of time, and that adds to their OPTEMPO, their PERSTEMPO, because they have to go back to the field.
They go back to the training centers. And that's part of the personnel tempo/operational tempo that we're having to manage. I believe that we can carry out anything
along the entire spectrum from disaster assistance to war fighting, but we've got to make sure that we get the balance right, because when we start using the troops
too often on the low end, it detracts from keeping them ready for the far end.
Thank you very much.
SEN. BUNNING: Thank you, general. I have an additional set of about eight questions I'd like to submit to both of you, and you can make the answers in
writing. Thank you.
SEN. LEVIN: The record will be kept open for 24 hours for that purpose.
SEN. MAX CLELAND (D-GA): Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I'd like to thank this -- take this opportunity to commend you both for coming here, and, indeed, the president for undertaking the strategic review. From what I've been able to discern, many legitimate reforms -- and I define "legitimate" as improving the security of the people of the United States -- will come from it. I intend to fully support those legitimate reforms. However, I have serious doubts and
reservations that the issue of national missile defense has been given too great a priority in your calculations.
Sam Nunn, the distinguished former senator from Georgia, has, I believe, put this matter in a proper perspective in a June 12th editorial when he states: "The likeliest nuclear attack against the United States would come not from a nuclear missile launched by a rogue state, but from a warhead in the belly of a ship or the back of a truck delivered by a group with no return address." The briefings I've received on the missile capabilities of so-called rogue states bear out Senator Nunn's position.
Mr. Chairman, I'd like to ask unanimous consent that two articles be put in the record, one Senator Nunn's full article on the subject, and secondly an article from NBC News: How Real Is The Rogue Threat?
SEN. LEVIN: They'll be made part of the record.
SEN. CLELAND: Furthermore, the difficulties that we have encountered through a series of failed integrated flight tests and the tests that, I think it was the senator from Florida was talking about, want careful examination before we commit huge sums of money for some kind of crash program to field a system of questionable effectiveness. National missile defense is an uncertain trumpet at this point, and we ought not to blow it before we test it and fully make sure it is deployable. It doesn't make sense to deploy this system without that guarantee. Moving down that road without that kind of testing does not improve the security of the people of the United States, in my opinion.
Now, I understand the argument that the advanced technology will allow for greater success in NMD operations. But I know the technological developments are still to be achieved in the future. For instance, General Larry Welch, chairman of the NMD independent review team, stated to the Congress last July that we're not technically ready to decide whether or not to deploy NMD missile defense. General Welch gave 2003 as the earliest possible decision point. How, then, can the administration deploy an NMD system and have it in place by 2004? Additionally, according to the Pentagon's BMDO organization, the earliest high risk -- and
that's high risk of success -- high risk deployment is 2006 for a ground-based system, 2009 for an airborne laser system, and 2010 for a sea-based system.
Now I know that the military services in their budget briefing have presented compelling arguments regarding demands on them by current deployment of
American services around the globe. I think it's ironic -- we meet today and we're moving into Macedonia. We have been in Bosnia for six years. We've been in
Kosovo for two or three. Now we're going in Macedonia.
I could remember coming here when -- five years ago when we had testimony that we were going to get out of Bosnia. We never thought about going into Kosovo or Macedonia. Now we're in them all.
I'm gravely concerned about the shift away from improving the current state of readiness and upgrading maintenance and spare parts and quality of life and retention, so we can have a unit to send wherever we need to send it. I think that we need to focus on that, rather than an updated version of Star Wars, at this time. I think it's a repeat of the mistake made by the country after World War II of compromising conventional capabilities in order to fund strategic programs with narrow utility. Those mistakes were paid for dearly by American service personnel committed to the Korean War.
Now as we approach the 51st anniversary of Task Force Smith committed in the Korean War, I caution you both that this senator will jealously guard resources our service members need to protect our vital interests, and oppose any effort that compromises our resources.
Mr. Secretary, I want to ask a basic question. You've basically blurred the distinction between theater missile defense and national missile defense. I'd just like to observe four points.
First, in testimony Lieutenant General Kadish himself has conceded that the engineering of the systems is different. The engineering of a theater missile defense is one thing; the engineering of a national missile defense is quite another.
Secondly, the Cochran act, which is the current law governing these matters, refers to national missile defense, not just missile defense.
Third, the only system whose earliest high-risk deployment was claimed to be 2004 is the ground-based system designed to intercept missiles in the missiles' terminal phase, just before impact, essentially a theater missile capability -- defense capability.
And fourth, the ABM Treaty is clear on the distinction.
Mr. Secretary, do you not see a distinction between theater missile defense, which I fully support, in terms of research and development and pursuing our technology in that regard, and national missile defense and deploying a national missile defense system, which I think is not what we ought to do at this time?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I thank you, Senator. Maybe I can make three quick comments.
First, to my knowledge, the United States is not putting troops into Macedonia. I don't know where that information came from. NATO is discussing it, but the United States has made no commitment to do that.
Second, you're quite right that there are more threats than missile defense, and terrorism, as former Senator Nunn has suggested, is one of them. The United States is currently spending more money on the terrorism problem than we do on missile defense. So the asymmetrical threats across the spectrum are a problem. Countries are not likely to compete with our armies, navies, and air forces. They are able to get their hands on weapons of mass destruction, and there are a variety of ways of delivering them. And I don't disagree with that, but it seems to me that we ought to be interested in addressing all of them, not just some of them.
Third, with respect to theater and national missile defense, there is a difference, obviously, in the engineering and in the purpose and in where -- what one does by way of interception.
The point about theater and national missile defense that I have addressed is this: What is national depends on where you live. If you live in Europe and a missile can reach you, that's national, it's not theater.
If you live in the United States and a missile can hit Europe, it's theater, not national.
The problem we were getting into by strictly separating theater and national missile defense, it seemed to me, is that it appeared we were interested only in protecting ourselves, and not our deployed forces, not our friends and allies, and that that decoupling from our allies was an unhealthy thing. You're correct, General Kadish is correct on the distinctions with respect to engineering. It strikes me that the -- not recognizing that what's national or theater depends on your -- where you live would also be a mistake.
SEN. CLELAND: Thank you, Mr. Secretary.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you very much.
We're going to recognize Senator Roberts next, and Senator Inhofe and finish at 11:15. So it's going to be really tight, but that's what the secretary's schedule requires.
SEN. PAT ROBERTS (R-KS): Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you for your very kind comments at the beginning of the session. I was not here, but I -- staff has informed me that you lauded the efforts of the Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee and the three years of hearings we've had on this subject, which is, you know, pretty much the foundation of what we're all about here. And I want to thank Chairman Warner, the chairman emeritus, in regards to my privilege of being the chairman of that. Senator Bingaman was the ranking member. All of our staff on both sides of the aisle did a lot of work. So I want to thank you for that.
Mr. Secretary, as I've indicated, we've been working for three- plus years on the Emerging Threats subcommittee and working closely with the Joint Forces Command on this notion of military transformation. And I have the press and the study here that we've been going over. It seems to me we need this effort since the threats we face are so dramatically different, as has been indicated by all of my colleagues. And we need your hands-on support, and I know you're going to provide us that, and you're already into that. It's going to be a very tough road; I think you found that out from the questions, you know, from my colleagues. To make any
meaningful change you're going to have a lot of opposition from the service culture, you're going to have a lot of opposition from the vendors to cut the favorite programs that are seen to be out of favor or that are rumored to be out of favor. But the reality is that we need the dramatic change. The question is, do we have the stomach to do it; the question is, can we consult in a way with you so that that effort will be a cooperative record?
Now, it seems to me that the transformation of our military would be based on a current national defense strategy. And I would argue that such a defense strategy should be based on national strategy, and finally, the national strategy should be based on a firm understanding of our vital national interests. I think you agree with that progression; you answered yes to that in a previous question that -- where we had the privilege of having you before the committee.
My question is, are those fundamental documents and principles consulted and referenced as your transformation plans are being developed?
And by that -- if I can find my other notes -- we've got the Bremer Commission, the Gilmore Commission, the Hart-Rudman Commission, CSIS study, Rand Corporation, the National Commission, which I served on. You should have access to that brilliant, detailed dialogue on the Senate floor by Senator Cleland and Senator Roberts, who went on five times to an empty chamber, but some people, you know, paid attention to it. What are our vital national interests? How can that play into transformation?
The Emerging Threats Subcommittee had anywhere from 25 to 30 hearings -- I'll get the exact number. We dealt with homeland security, we dealt with terrorism, danger of a biological attack, cyber warfare, weapons of mass destruction, counter-threat reduction programs, drugs, immigration. Our jurisdiction is all over the lot.
Now, we've had all these hearings and all this testimony. My question is -- and I don't think this has happened because I've asked the staff and I've asked the distinguished colleagues on my committee, that any one of these study groups that you have set up, I don't think that -- I'm not too sure that somebody hasn't read it; maybe an intern down there read it -- but I don't think we really consulted in regards to having your study group come up -- and maybe this is the wrong time to do it, but at some point, I think we ought to have some consultation and you come up and say, "Hey, Pat, what do you think? You've been doing this for three years." "Hey, Mr. Chairman, hey, Mr. Ranking Member, you know, what do you think?"
And we've had all the experts. I can't think of an expert we haven't had in terms of the commissions. And I think that would be very helpful. I think we could avoid some of the more controversial, you know, bickering and backering, you know, back and forth. Most senators, if they're in the room, when they leave the room don't really criticize as much if they're in the room. There are a few exceptions to that, of course.
But I just -- so my question to you is basically, have we taken a look at those fundamental premises and all of the hearings that we have had on this particular subject, and then maybe, you know, had a little chat, had a little meaningful dialogue with the people as opposed to all of these new reports that, you know, that makes us, you know, get all upset. I got upset over the reference -- I told the Marine Corps and the Army at one particular time that the Marine Corps is the tip of
the spear, the Army is the spear; we don't need two tips, we don't need two spears. Now I see under transformation we may not have a spear or a tip. Service culture is important; don't mess with the Marine Corps, sir.
SEC. RUMSFELD: (Chuckles.) Senator, I thank you for your comments and I'm, of course, well aware of the work of your subcommittee, and I have read carefully the commission that you served on, and we've talked about it. And we are now arriving exactly at the time when it would be very useful to have your subcommittee meet with the group of people in the Quadrennial Defense Review who are working it, just starting this process this week on the specific transformation pieces and what the implications are flowing out of, as you say, the national security strategy, the national defense strategy. And we would be delighted to do that, and I'll see that it's arranged.
SEN. ROBERTS: I just want to say, Mr. Chairman, that we don't have all the answers, but there are some areas of expertise that staff -- we have a great staff. And it would just be -- "What do you think about this?" "Well now, wait a minute, you know, two years ago we heard this, and this is what happened where it didn't work out."
And, of course, you've got great experience and, you know, so does General Shelton in that respect. But I would urge you to do that.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you very much.
Senator Akaka is now here, so we're going to call on him. Just -- apparently he has one question. And then we will call on Senator Inhofe. But we'll still try to get you out of here as close to 11:15 as we can.
SEN. DANIEL AKAKA (D-HI): Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Secretary, last week President Bush announced that the Navy would stop training at the Island of Vieques. It is my understanding that the law requires a referendum to be conducted unless the chief of Naval Operations and the commandant of the Marine Corps jointly certify that Vieques is no longer needed.
What are your thoughts about this issue?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Senator, I know that you and certainly Senator Inhofe have given a great deal of thought and time to this subject, and I'm trying to figure out exactly what the sequence was, but I believe that technically the secretary of the Navy made the announcement as to what would take place, not President Bush. President Bush I think commented on it after it had happened.
But all I can say is that the decision has been made to come to the Congress and the Congress has a role in this, obviously, and I understand there may be some hearings with respect to it.
SEN. AKAKA: Mr. Secretary, to your knowledge, were the CNO and commandant consulted prior to this decision?
SEC. RUMSFELD: The chief of naval -- well, I could let General Shelton answer this, but to my knowledge, the chief of naval operations has been in involved in
these discussions over a sustained period.
GEN. SHELTON: I know that the CNO has in fact been involved, going back to last year when the issue first started; to what degree in recent days or in the last several months, I do not know. It is a Title X responsibility to train, organize and equip, and I know the Navy has been working this very hard, as well as looking for potential alternatives for it.
SEN. AKAKA: Are you aware whether there is any alternative site for readiness training of the Navy and Marine Corps?
GEN. SHELTON: To my knowledge, right now there is not an alternative site. I am aware of three different areas that are being looked at as potentials.
SEN. AKAKA: My last bit of question here is what is the state of the legislative proposal that is to be forwarded to Congress to address the referendum?
SEC. RUMSFELD: I don't know, personally.
SEN. AKAKA: Thank you, Mr. Chairman --
SEC. RUMSFELD: I know Senator Inhofe --
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you, Senator Akaka.
SEN. WARNER: I'd like to clarify, Mr. Chairman. I spoke -- the secretary of the Navy called me yesterday. The draft of that legislation was on his desk. It's under consideration to be forwarded to your office. And I thank the chairman of the Joint Chiefs for saying that the Navy has worked very hard and very diligently for years to search for alternative sites. I think that's important, because this is a critical issue before the Congress right now.
SEN. LEVIN: Senator Warner has requested here, a letter I've just seen for the first time, that he has previously requested that this committee conduct a hearing on the position of the Department of Defense relative to Vieques, but his final paragraph says this, that "the administration has not formally decided whether or not to forward legislation to the Congress concerning Vieques. Therefore, I recommend that the Armed Services Committee not conduct a hearing on the subject of Vieques until such time as we have before the committee for consideration a formal legislative proposal from the administration on the future use of Vieques." I just want to make that a part of the record.
SEN. INHOFE: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
First of all, I agree -- both agree and disagree with Senator Cleland. I apologize for being late. I had an emergency root canal this morning, and it's going to be finished at 3:00 today. So this is not very enjoyable for me, either.
SEN. LEVIN: I hope the secretary doesn't feel like he's had a root canal here, either, this morning. (Laughter.)
SEN. INHOFE: (Laughs.) Oh, no, he never feels that way.
I do agree with Senator Cleland and Senator Bunning on their comments as far as Kosovo and Bosnia, and, of course, I hope that -- we've learned one lesson from this: it's easy to get in, it's hard to get out. So I hope we'll just keep that in mind.
On the -- I do disagree with him, though, and I've heard the argument so many times when they talked about the threat, the terrorist threat that's here, the suitcases. No one from Oklahoma has to be told what that threat is. And the devastation of the Murrah Federal Office Building was the explosive power of one ton of TNT; the smallest nuclear warhead we really hear about is about a kiloton, a thousand times that destruction. And the fact that we already have three countries that have multiple stage rockets that can carry weapons of mass destruction to the United States, and they are trading technology and systems with such countries as Iraq, Iran, Syria, Libya, Pakistan and some of the other countries, I think it's a huge thing. I did see -- finally see the movie two days ago, "Thirteen Days", and I hope everyone will see that movie and see how the threat -- the Cuban missile crisis back in the 1960s.
I really believe in my heart that the threat today is every bit as great as it was at that time. So I would hope that we not get ourselves into this position of saying we are either going to guard against terrorist attacks carrying suitcases or ICBMs, but not both; we need to have adequate protection against both of them.
The second thing is -- I know this is really limited and you've stayed past your time and I appreciate your being here -- on this thing of Vieques, I would only ask that we be consulted before something specific, anything more is being done. We were not consulted before. I'm not blaming either one of you for that. But these things came out, and they put the White House in a very awkward position, because quite frankly I think when that first statement was made they didn't realize that we had very carefully crafted language in our Defense Authorization Bill that would protect against someone trying to unilaterally, without thinking it through, do away with the live range that I believe is -- it directs affects American lives. And it's -- the policy is something, too, that --
I have been around. And I've looked at all the sites that we can find. And, of course, the Pace-Fallon report came out, and the Rush report, and they have studied these. To get the integrated training that is necessary to save lives for east coast deployments, I believe it's absolutely necessary. And I think that self-determination now is not such a bad idea. I didn't like the idea at first, but I think now if we to that in November we're going to have, unless they change the law, we're going to have a referendum. Quite frankly, I think the people of Vieques will embrace the Navy and will vote favorably to keep a live range on Vieques. And any comments you want you make, you can.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Well, senator, first let me say that I agree completely with you on the variety of threats of weapons of mass destruction and that it's important that we address the spectrum of them and not one and ignore others.
Second, with respect to Vieques, I -- you have been a stalwart and made a terrific contribution, and working to assure that the men and women who go into the gulf from the east coast have the kind of training that they need, and I recognize that.
And I certainly agree with you that before anything else is done, we have to take full cognizance of the legislation and of you and your associates and your interest, and consult.
SEN. INHOFE: Thank you, Mr. Secretary. Thank you.
SEN. LEVIN: Mr. Secretary, we want to thank you. We -- I leave you -- I must tell you there was one comment in your remarks that I have to point out, because I think it is really inaccurate.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Oh, my.
SEN. LEVIN: You say that we've skimped on our people, doing harm to their trust and confidence, as well as to the stability of our force. And we have done -- under the leadership of Senator Warner here, Senator Stevens, Senator Byrd, Senator Inouye on Appropriations, on the House side, over last few years, we've passed the largest pay raise in 20 years. We've committed to annual military pay raises greater than the annual increase in the employment cost index, through 2006.
Two years ago, the president requested Congress approve the return of military retirement benefits from 40 to 50 percent of basic pay after 20 years of service. That was a high priority of General Shelton and the Joint Chiefs. They had been reduced from 50 to 40 percent in 1986.
We approved Secretary Cohen's proposal to increase housing allowances last year for military families, to begin eliminating out- of-pocket housing costs.
We have reduced the number of military families now by -- on food stamps by 75 percent. We last year approved a special allowance for the remaining military families who qualified for food stamps.
We enacted a mail-order pharmacy benefit for military retirees, a new entitlement for Medicare-eligible military retirees to receive care through the TriCare program.
I just -- I don't think there's been a major initiative in the area of personnel benefits and quality of life that General Shelton and the Joint Chiefs have recommended to Congress that have not been provided. And I'm not going to -- I'd be happy, of course, if you want to take time to comment. I'm not going to put General Shelton on the spot. But I really hope that you would -- he's assured us many, many times over the years that we have really done well in this area, and I
would just urge that you have a private conversation with General Shelton, when you get back to the Pentagon, on that subject.
This Congress in the last years has not skimped on our force. That has been first and foremost our goal -- to protect that force, their quality of life. That is going to continue to be our goal. No matter whether Democrats or Republicans are in control of this Congress, I can assure you -- or this Senate -- that that is the number-one goal.
So I just --
SEN. WARNER: Mr. Chairman, you should include yourself in the litany of those who have worked on this through the years, because at the time I was chairman, you were a full partner on it in every step of the way. I think it was just an inarticulate phrase that so often happens when someone prepares a statement for --
SEC. RUMSFELD: Mr. Chairman, Mr. Chairman -- (laughter) -- I request that I be considered a temporary senator and be permitted to revise and extend those remarks that were imperfect and inelegant.
SEN. WARNER: Thank you --
SEN. LEVIN: Thank you.
SEC. RUMSFELD: However -- oh, however --
SEN. LEVIN: In that case, you're not going to be granted approval to revise your remarks. (Laughter.)
SEC. RUMSFELD: -- let me say this: I agree with everything you said. There's been a lot done.
The fact remains that if you look at their housing, and you look at the facilities they work in, and you know that best practices in the private sector is to recapitalize every 67 years, in the aggregate, blended, and that we currently are at 198 years, there is no way we can say that we have provided the kinds of housing and facilities for the men and women in the armed forces to work in that we would be proud of.
Second, the op tempo has been a problem. And that is part of morale and it's part of quality of life. And there have been periods in the last decade where the numbers of, not major regional wars but lesser contingencies have been so numerous that it has put an enormous strain on the men and women in the armed forces. And I will, in fact, have a private conversation with General Shelton. I see him two or three times a day.
SEN. LEVIN: We appreciate that. We also will, I'm sure, be very responsive to those requests, as we've always been. We have a lot of work to do together in this area.
SEC. RUMSFELD: Good.
SEN. LEVIN: I think you may find that in some places we will be exceeding your request and maybe changing some of your priorities, as has been indicated by my colleagues around here, because of the high priority that we give to quality of life, to morale, to pay and benefits, to retention. And so you may find some of your priorities indeed, for little things like missile defense, changed in order to focus on the things that you just talked about.
Thank you. We stand adjourned.
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