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tv   Hearing Examines State of U.S.- Qatar Relations  CSPAN  July 27, 2017 5:51am-8:17am EDT

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[inaudible conversations] softer real net -- recognizing myself for our opening statements i will recognize other members and for those witnesses those
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prepared statements are made as part of our records with those statements and questions for a the record we have many members of the subcommittee on the judiciary committee ancestral important track up happening as we speak and we appreciate the time they can scare to culvert for lahood. >> last month that subcommittee convened on those opportunities of the united states and saudi arabia but today we focus on the relationship and their relationship with the neighbors. it is important to note this rift is not new. former senior level official of the treasury department stated earlier this month
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saudi arabia have fought for years with those actions against the of financiers and they will continue to operate. . .
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then of course there is khalifa mohamad who is a u.s. come in you designated international terrorist for his role in financing al qaeda and the 9/11 mastermind. in 2008 he was tried and convicted in absentia by bahrain for his terrorist activity and arrested later that year by qatar only to be released by the qataris six months later and openly financed by doha. can anyone guess what khalifa mohamad has been up to these days? he was implicated in terror finance activities in 2012 but more recently he has been alleged to be financing and supporting terror in both iraq and syria with no response from the qatari government.
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hamas leader ahmed michelle also made doha his headquarters for years while the qatari government supports, with a qatari government support in the muslim brotherhood has received significant support from qatar. of course not all this is supported by the government doha. many individuals get charity and have been known to raise large sums of money for a qaeda, the al nusra fund hamas and even isis. in qatar errors terror financing by the government, terror financing done in qatar through their own businesses that the government may not know about and terror financing in qatar that the government knows about but there's nothing to stop it. according to the 2015 report on terrorism this state department quoted quote indices and individuals within qatar continued to serve as a source of financial support for
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terrorist and violent extremist groups particularly regional al-qaeda affiliates such the nusra friend end quote. there is no excuse for openly harboring terrorists and supporting groups that seek to harm our allies and excuse by qatar that is harboring these nefarious actors because the u.s. asked them to no longer stands up. qatar should not be continuing this wreck was policy due to past mistakes from previous republican and democratic administrations. we must not allow for our airbase airbase to be used as a means to justify this sort of behavior and our lack of a more appropriate response. doha's paper mites and must change the status quo and if it is not a risk losing our cooperation on the airbase. the truth of the matter is none of the gulf countries, none of the gulf countries are without their issues. all of the nations have been involved in funding different
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groups at some point that we would not approve of but it seems like saudi arabia and they uae are making progress at a faster rate while qatar is making some progress but still lagging slowly behind. according to the congressional research service quote in october of 2016 daniel glaser then assistant secretary for terrorist financing and the office for terrorism and financial intelligence told a washington d.c. research institute that over the past decade qatar has made less progress in countering terrorism financing then had saudi arabia and quote. we must analyze the totality of our relationship with these gulf countries. while qatar only helps to facilitate our operations that are airbase, the uae for example has spent 12 years with this fighting alongside in afghanistan has been in all think counterterrorism operations with the u.s. in libya. moving forward one outcome that
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i hope comes out of this is for the gulf countries to work closely with our treasury department financial action task force to root out and disrupt terror financing. this uneasy time may just be an opportunity for us to take a long hard look at how and for some if we can effectively address and stop terror financing in the region and ultimately defeat the extremism that threatens the security of us all. but that i turned to my friend the ranking member mr. deutsch for his statement. >> think you madam chairman. thanks to the witnesses for being back before a committee. i think the chair for convening this timely hearing to explore a relationship with qatar in a moment of her instability in the region. the ongoing diplomatic rift between qatar and gulf neighbors is not good for the region and it's not good for american interests. it is a distraction from today's
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more pressing challenges i ran, the conflict in syria and the spread of terrorism. for most americans who expect complex in the middle east to wallow along sectarian lines or between competing regional hegemon's it is confusing to see sunni-arab neighbors and complex this is a dispute over long-standing agreements over qatar's support financially and through a state-owned al-jazeera news that act as qatar's neighbors and in many cases the united states is deeply problematic. this is a nuanced and deeply complex matter as our relationship with qatar is no less complex. the tiny but immensely wealthy nation has close relations with all actors in the region could unfortunately it includes terror groups like hamas and the afghan taliban. qatar is served as a financial political lifeline for hamas'
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dedicated rowing and gaza for over a decade now. qatar has spent hundreds of millions of dollars of the gaza strip including haven for hamas leader khaled bashar and helped legitimize the rule when he became the first national leader to visit to moscow territory. qatar has supported other in the region including sending advanced weaponry and financing to ask dream as in syria and libya and al-jazeera has given a clarion call to americans and israelis. these realities are troubling. qatar is a close partner in the fight against terrorism in the region. doha hosts and helps fund the largest u.s. military facility in the middle east essentially our forward operating base. it is from this space that we supported the wars in iraq and afghanistan and airstrikes against isis. qatar has served as mediator
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oftentimes to the benefit of united states per qatar has helped broker a cease-fire between hamas and israel during periods of intense fighting but qatar is helped secure an american hostage held for two years by the icao the link nusra after the tragic beheading of a u.s. journalist. it has begin taking steps to hold qatar accountable for terror finance that they have got more to do. while they began prosecuting terror groups they have done so in secret hardly an effective deterrent and it's unclear whether the outcomes of these prosecutions have led to any significant jail time or penalties but i was pleased to see the signing of a new memorandum of understanding with secretary tillerson this month but we don't yet know the details of how this will be
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implemented and we will wait to see the results. madam chairman it is important to know also that saudi arabia egypt and other nations now in qatar face challenges as well. two weeks ago our subcommittee held a similar hearing on saudi arabia in which we explored our strategic partnership as well as our new concern over saudi arabia's slow progress and in continued exporting of fundamentalist ideology but today's hearing should not the about determining who is right. today's hearing should rather make clear fighting among partners does not advance america's interests. we should be pushing for unity among our allies to fight common threats. they should be pushing all of our partners in the region to cut off funding to terror groups and we should be urging every leader to curtail hate speech and improve the records of human rights including treating women as equal members of society. madam chairman i hope they can assess our relationship with
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qatar thoughtfully and i hope her witnesses can help us inform our path forward and i hope we can review the major demands made on qatar to reduce relations with i ran shut down the chechen military base and shut down al-jazeera who understands the motivations behind these demands in an effort to see how a resolution might actually help you to trust that our witnesses today will lead us in an interesting and worthwhile conversation and i appreciate being here and i yield back. >> thank you very much mr. mr. deutsch and now we will turn turn to our members for any opening remarks they might have starting with mr. cook of california. >> think you madam chairman it is going to be very interesting hearing. similar to the one we had with turkey. friend or foe and obviously as
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has already been discussed some of the issues are going to come up, the relationship with hamas, taliban financing and everything else but now there's a new wrinkle and that is the world cup and the north korean workers that are going to be paid for by that government bear with the money going back to north korea that is probably going to be used to finance more missile research and i don't think i have to tell the panel or anybody here that this is an even more troubling scenario. we are talking about a large number of north floridians including the north korea military that are going to be working on that. i hope that our panel will also discuss that as well as the other issues that were just raised. think you madam chairman.
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>> thank you sir. mr. suozzi of new york. >> think you madam chairman. i want to thank you for holding this hearing. very timely. it's very difficult for many of us to untangle the complicated relationships that exist in this region. isn't it on at the background for the witnesses do and that's why we are so appreciative of their being here to testify today. between the religious disputes in the tribal and family relationships to the historic disputes in people's economic interests is sometimes difficult to untangle who the different parties arpad no one in the region really has clean hands and we need to figure out how to promote our agenda in america and throughout the west which is that we have to stand strong and hard against people who use propaganda and hate speech and economic warfare to promote extremism and violence. i'm excited to be here today and to hear what the witnesses have to say.
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thank you. >> the chair now recognizes mr. delfin for one minute. mr. delfin you are recognized. >> think you madam chairwoman and very much looking forward to today's hearing listening to her witnesses and hearing questions and giving feedback. a lot of great thoughts were already shared. i especially like the ranking members opening testimony. you touched on so much of what i do care deeply about. recently i was in qatar and i found them to be very welcoming. they were going as far out of their way as possible to make progress in our relationship with a military base that was there in our servicemembers were well taken care of and a good strategic location and at the
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same exact time i'm greatly concerned by the welcoming atmosphere that exists for hamas and i just want to better understand the future of his relationship and the reasons why the reality is six -- exists as a dozen 2017 i look forward to hearing the testimony. sidibe thank you mr. giovan. >> thank you madam chairman making member for holding this hearing. there've been a series of allegations between qatar and the countries and it's hard for me to figure out what is true and what is false. let me tell you what you see. i do see a blockade that is resulted in cruel consequences. you have families now being separated based on national origin and that is highly troubling. i also see a trump administration that is sending mixed signals at the same time the secretary of state is saying
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the escalated do not blockade. we have the person doing the opposite claiming credit for this blockade and then you have $12 billion worth of fighting just sent to qatar but i would love to see the panel clarify that towards qatar but it should be but what it actually is right now. i yield back. >> the gentleman yields back in the chair recognizes the time i'm from california mr. issa for one minute. >> enqueue madam chairman. seems like only yesterday the president said you're either with us or against us and the world said it's too simple but i think as we evaluate qatar and the other gulf states we have to ask a basic question, is qatar with us, are they moving toward a more with us? are that cooperating, are they more cooperative? are they moving toward iran, are
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they them moving away from the u.s.? he's are questions i believe we are going to be asking today and i'm hoping to hear throughout the day because i believe that although you are either with us or against us there are shades of gray in all of our allies in the region. it's clear that turkey has been moving away from us since 2003. it is clear that qatar has not been the best of actors when it comes to taking away funding from those who support terrorism and it's clear that if they are moving with us we need to have that demonstrated just as we asked saudi arabia the united arab emirates and others to demonstrate on a regular basis so think you madam chairman. they yield back. >> the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new york for one minute. >> i want to join with the statement. what we have to talk about here's the issue of fairness in me to make sure when we talk
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about qatar and the other countries in the region we as the united states don't think should be picking and choosing. we should keep talking because we need the mall and we need to figure out how we will work collectively together. qatar has done some things that have been very good for united states and our military base trying to make sure to work with us with regards to the war on terror and i think what needs to happen especially when he to bring as the committee individuals on the bush administration the obama administration because there is dialogue and conversation begin have with them to talk about the people that have asked to do on behalf of united states. if that is the case in those individuals should not be held responsible if they are working corporately with us. look for forward to hearing the customer the witnesses and make sure we have a level playing
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field here. >> thank you mr. meeks for your pink statement. we will now turn to her witnesses. i would first like to welcome back doctored jonathan schanzer who is the senior vice president of research for the foundation for defense of democracy. doctors schanzer has served as a counterterrorism analyst at the department of the treasury and prior to that worked as a research fellow at the washington institute for near east policy. welcome back dr. schanzer and i'd like like to welcome back dr. matthew leavitt's who directs the program and counterterrorism and intelligence at the washington institute for near east policy. previously he served as the deputy assistant secretary for intelligence and analysis at the u.s. department of the treasury. before that as a fbi counterterrorism analyst. we are glad to have you back with us today dr. leavitt. finally i would like to welcome
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elon goldenberg is a senior fellow and her of the middle east security program at the center for a new american security. prior to cnas mr. goldberg served as the chief of the staff to the special envoy for israeli-palestinian negotiations at the u.s. department of state from 2012 to 2013 mr. goldenberg served as a senior professional staff member on the senate or in relations committee covering middle east issues. in that capacity he acted as one of the elite directors of the serious transition support act which provide additional authorities to arm the serious opposition. the bill passed the senate foreign relations committee in may of 2013 and i thank him for being here with us today. doctors schanzer we will begin with you for your opening statement. >> madam chairman ranking member deutsche members of the subcommittee on behalf the
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foundation for democracy thank you for the opportunity to testify. as many of you know we have been producing research and analysis on the arab spring. their critique has been consistent 30.2 qatari support for hamas the taliban jihadists and syria libya and the muslim brotherhood that we have been -- al-jazeera and track them in a report suggesting qatar has noted through the work of my colleague david weinberg at qatar is failed to take action against u.n. and u.s. funded -- for a moment i would like to address how qatar has responded to the allegations against the grid after ignoring criticism from think tanks like the better part of the decade qatar claims is being unfairly singled out. to be sure the other gulf countries have their problems.
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a recent state department report noted terrorist financiers continue to operate in kuwait saudi arabia continues to finance the spread of wahhabism and the entire gulf suffers or mitt democracy deficit but to understand my qatar is identified first among states for terrorism financing imagine for a moment you are a policeman he just watched five cars speed going 85 mustin aren't five miles and are consuming pastime is a red ferrari going 90 miles an hour. which car would you pull over? that ferrari is qatar. cutter's support is overt egregious and its brazen. as the gulf crisis has dragged on qatar has been defiant insisting its definition of terrorism differs for this is a particularly poor defense from a country claiming to be an american ally in the war on terrorism. as for the curt crisis between qatar and its neighbors saudis and they emirates have been engaged in a fierce competition with qatar for years. they attempt to undermine each
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other through media trysts lopping western capital and other soft power. since arab spring however that rivalry has boiled over. both sides boiled over. both sides of my support behind various processes represent a lease. the copies that the muslim brotherhood and emirates are working to were served airball voter pushing for stability at the expense of the possibility for reform. these two in the middle east are fundamentally at odds with one another. why is u.s. policy not to back one gulf states over another insuring terrorism finance in the gulf comes to an end could i offer you the following suggestions. first congress should access whether qatar should continue to host her most significant airbase in the middle east. fighting our war on terrorism from qatar's and the convoluted message to our allies in the region. congress should work with the justice department to ensure that qatar narrowly at jobs lost to combat terrorism financing
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but fully implements them. we should consider passing the bipartisan stop terrorist resources and money for storm act up 2017. the bill was introduced in the senate and not yet in the house and could label qatar and other countries as jurisdictions for terrorism financing concerns. congress should press the state department pursuant to state department authorizations act to issue its report or which states paid grants to terrorists over the last year per congress to press for full implementation of the administration ask suggesting countries like qatar to post operative certain licensing requirements for dual-use goods. congress must continue to monitor qatar's neighbors and if qatar's palms will result tomorrow there had be a significant concern for -- concern for terrorism finance. those who feed from the trough are often unable to engage on
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the policies and behaviors even when they fly in the face of u.s. interest that it would be curious to hear how many of you have been approached by lobbyists since the gulf crisis began little on the lead-up to this hearing. there are issues that i did not address in this testimony. if there's anything you wish to discuss him happy to answer questions on behalf of the --. >> thank you doctors schanzer. doc or three are recognized. >> thank you for the opportunity to appear before you and assess their relationship. qatar's been a longtime ally of the estates and host of largest u.s. military base in the least. the u.s. has long criticized the qatari government for its lack of counterterrorism policies in particular shortcomings regarding terror finance. moving forward is critical to bring this gulf crisis to a close and the best way to the
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findface evening but substandard than verifiable ways for qatar to address the most serious shortcomings in its counterterrorism and counter extremism posture but some of the recent accusations made against qatar exaggerated but the claims against qatar are focused on issues that go should have addressed a long time ago. recent years qatar is maintained an open door policy for wide range of islamic extremist groups from hamas to the taliban and others. the most disturbing however is support for al qaeda's -- while qatar has made efforts to hault terror financing the efficacy of these efforts is questionable. for example in 2014 the state department credited qatar as shutting down a fund-raising platform for syria. the following year the u.s. treasury designated qatari was operating as a syrian affiliate.
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they it came up again in the 2017 designation of kuwait-based terror finance or mohammad al uneasy. he continued to provide funding for nusra even after qatar shut down the fund-raising platform in 2143 years earlier leaving a big question mark over the integrity of the measures to stop terror financing. according to the state department's 2015 report doha had made no effort to prosecute terrorist financiers. qatar had persecuted five, it is now clear one was big did that in absentia. none of them are in jail when the spat broke out.
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the one still resident in qatar are reportedly under surveillance but according to recent reports some new arrests may have been made since the current crisis began likely involving some of those previously tried in qatari court's. >> qatar's lack of transparency led to much speculation about the country's commitment and it's worth noting just recently the director of the qatari government communications office said in that quote both individuals with links to terrorism have been prosecuted which would mean the total number of suspects is five. let me give you a couple of examples. this would have been the second time that he was convicted following the 2000 arrests in which he was subsequently released from prison after you promised not to do terrorist activity in qatar or consider khalifa also pay who was arrested in january 2008 in bahrain for financing terrorism undergoing terrorist training to
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receive terrorist training and more. he was arrested again in march of 2008 at qatar and served a six-month term in prison. he was supposedly under surveillance after he was released but in 2015 the u.n. committee on al qaeda sanctions updated new information which is no small matter because it requires a new vote of the full u.n. security council and reported he had resumed her sick cavity. it's important to know what terror finance prosecution are difficult cases and part of a normally functioning court system and these are not the only tools effectively serving as bumblers of donors that the region to al qaeda interior particular. the first -- will be to populate the designation was just created by qatar's amir and to put
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people on that list. the u.s. just signed an mou on counterterrorism financing with qatar. creating a whole bunch of new authorities previous authorities and to be implemented in full. >> qatar has a history of past counterterrorism related laws in 2004, 2006, 2010, 2014. they were either not implemented or not implemented in full so we have to make sure these are done effectively. moving forward the most important thing is qatar populates the destination list in a transparent manner start with individuals designated united nations to fund and provide support to al qaeda and other terrorist groups. there are several other recommendations i make in my written statement may thank you for the opportunity justified and look forward to answering any questions you may have. >> thank you.or levitt read me now turn to mr. goldenberg for your opening statement.
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>> madam chairman ranking member deutsche members of 70 thank you for the opportunity to testify on the u.s. qatar relationship in the applications within the corporation counsel to might shut if was not to recount the moves in tournaments each site is made since the crisis erupted. instead i will provide context as to what created the situation the implication of u.s. interest in the possible way ahead. qatar is a complex part is the least in one hand they pursued a policy that included building relations at factors united states finds problematic including groups in syria taliban hamas and the local weather. this approach is independent and sometimes provocative foreign-policy that is chafed some of its gulf measures -- neighbors. it has them. that meant dinner major reason for the recent action. from an american perspective the slow response to terror financing is the most
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problematic. since war erupted qatar was on the forefront of supporting syrian opposition groups. a number of other gulf state actors also pursued an anybody but a soft policy without setting some of these anybody's. certainly the united states made its own share of mistakes during this time. turkey was the most including al-nusra and we are still living with mistakes in syria and will be for years to come. on some issues could tars been a useful partner. qatar has a critical u.s. airbase. the airbase is a central node for which the united states conducts operations in iraq. in afghanistan as well as other operations across the middle east. the race has hosted u.s. military aircraft are worth 15 years and during that time has been a reliable partner allowing access for broad array of
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military operations from over the flexible approach of problematic actors has at times made it a useful connector and diplomacy requiring engagement with unsavory characters. take for example could tars relationship with hamas. on the one hand both the united states and israel doesn't need hamas as a terrorist organization could on the other whether one chooses to view qatar positive or negative was clear is the split does emerge in recent weeks has not been good for u.s. interest. two weeks after president trump visited three odd behind it, check death of countering extremism and pushing back on iran america's gulf allies have launched into an internal feud that has distracted them and us. meanwhile the split is created opportunities for russia and iran to increase influence the
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region. going forward the trump administration to take a number of steps. first settle on one consistent message and approach instead of patry the present secretary of state which only cause confusion undermine ability to mediate. second move away from viewing the middle east through pure black-and-white prism. how demonstration focuses heavily on unifying and backing sunni-arab states that filter recognized the internal -- among them. this gave the green light to some gulf partners to move ahead with these actions. there had settle in for the long-haul as this crisis is not going to be stopped soon. she clearly signaled her partners were still look as solid challenges posed by isis and aranibar expect them to do the same instead of focusing all the diplomatic energy and trying to get washington to take their side. fourth encourage the escalation on all sides by lease getting them to tone down their public rhetoric when emphasizing the u.s. is willing to play a mediating role however it's
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ultimately an inter-arab disagreement that they will need to be out front to solve it finally we should use this crisis as an opportunity and engage with all the countries of the gcc to shine the light on the problem of terror financing and set us on the members of said qatar certainly is a major problem neck after an far from the only one of this could be an opportunity in terms of this crisis to push all of them to be better so thank you very much and i look forward to hearing and answering her questions. >> thank you mr. goldenberg and i i think there were those further up in a statement spread like to open up my line of questioning by rep and icing the fact that i think is hearing is very timely on both qatar and the gulf countries have been important partners and we would like to see a construct with on this resolution to the crisis. qatar is a military ally in the united states but has simultaneously supported hamas
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and al qaeda. we have a role in easing tensions in the region but not at the expense of our national security interests and our values. qatar must cut ties with terrorists. our allies cannot provide support to our enemies. dr. schanzer i have no sympathy for supporters of hamas, nor do you. you have called the u.s. base in qatar and insane arrangement i think is that quote. do you believe that this location is dangerous and how would you move the base in such a way that doesn't compromise operations in the region? >> congresswoman wagner thank you for the question. i would probably put it this way. first of all it is an insane arrangement the identity of a forward airbase that is
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conducting the most crucial operations in the war on terror and it is mere miles away from the taliban presence, hamas presence where there are designated terror financiers from a number friends running around in doha just sends the wrong message. since the wrong message to the united states and to our allies in the coalition to fight isis and al qaeda. since a wrong message to our middle east allies as well. in other words when we tell them we are going to hold them to account for their terror financing issues and they look at what's going on in qatar the optics i think our rather terrible. as for the safety of our troops so far i would say so good. we have not had incidents where it appears that our troops are being threatened. i would actually say and airbase in turkey which is another country that supports terror groups. but at the end of the day our recommendation has been that we
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begin to assess what it would take to move the base. maybe not all of it, maybe not all that it wants but we need to take a look regionally as the other areas where we may be able to access and signaled to the qataris that we are willing to move. we don't need to do it. we may decide at the end of the day the pentagon can can't do it. it's too difficult in the meantime it's important to message to the appropriate people in qatar that we are willing to look at this problem and to reallocate assets if necessary. >> thank you. doc or levitt can you discuss with the saudis and other gulf states have taken that the qataris have not? >> thanks for the question. terror financing is a problem throughout the gulf and it took the saudis some time to get on top of this problem. for a long time u.s. treasury
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points to saudi arabia system to this problem but the saudis turned a corner. there is more that they can do but the saudis now run intelligence operations. they prosecute people. they work with us in designating people. there've even been joined u.s. saudi designations including charities and individuals in saudi arabia. that is domestically difficult politically -- politically for them but they do produce more that they can do but now we point to others with the gcc toward saudi arabia and we are trying to show them, the types of things would like them to do more. it's an irony that kuwait is a country that is playing the middleman on this in kuwait is often described as being just as bad as qatar on terror financing and something went to recognize as well but the fact is there are things that qatar should have done a long time ago that they have not done that that we
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have frankly tolerated them not doing and the overt financing of the most important al qaeda entity in the world al qaeda in saudi arabia is completely beyond the pale. and mr. goldberg one of the demands from the gulf states was that qatar must close down the turkish military base. i am guess that they are concerned about the muslim brotherhood influenced but how important do you think this demand is in terms of regional stability and purity and is this one that should be dropped? >> thank you congressman for the question. i think on the list of demands that the turkish airbase is probably lower on the list of demands that they emirates are leveling in the most conversations when you hear them more has to do with the press and personal attacks that the
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different sites are launching at each other. that's more the source of the issue than the terror financing issue within talking about and much more central to the debate. frankly as there has been a move for the turks to point forces years ago and that when the crisis erupted they moved everything out and moved it to a symbolic is a good opportunity where the crisis and the moves back fired on some of our partners if what they are trying to do is isolate qatar and what they manage to do is strengthen the turkic qatar relationship instead. i would put this one probably not as central as some of the other questions out there but something we will see as time goes on. >> thank you for that insight. my time has elapsed. i now recognize the ranking member mr. deutsch for five minutes. >> thank you madam chairman and mr. goldenberg you referred to the flexible approach to problematic actors, so the
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question i have for you and the panelists, what is that? here is how it's characterized. yes we know hamas is a terrorist organization but if our ally has a relationship than perhaps that can help us somehow end up her schanzer would argue this that hamas is hamas and we should have nothing to do with them and her ally shouldn't be there. the question is what is a flexible approach and dr. schanzer is qatar acted to move all of these terrorist groups out of qatar in doha altogether where do they go and to mr. goldenberg's point is
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there some benefit to having them there instead of in the arms of isis pics. >> thank you ranking member deutsch and exactly. and this is precisely the point. it's complicated but what i would say, maybe i will start with the example of hamas and i will quote ahead of research for israel's military intelligence who has been up here a lot i've believed in the past talking about it publicly. no one else is willing to help of the country when it comes to gaza and here's a perfect example of the situation we are dealing with. we have had three wars between israel and hamas over the last few years in gaza with large casualties for palestinians and large casualties for the idf and the israelis have started to realize well maybe we should not , we are just trying to squeeze hamas and it doesn't
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seem to be worked into maybe you need to think about different approach and alleviate the humanitarian situation find ways to establish channels and keep the situation calm and not have a conflict. who is the only real channel they have to do that? the country. we have been using that channel they've been helping them facilitate that channel. if hamas was in tehran which is the light the outcome of what would happen if they were kicked out doha then i think what you would see is no ability to communicate that way and probably hamas taking more aggressive actions. this isn't to justify the qatari relationship with hamas but i don't agree that necessarily predicting that the problem. it's not something that the u.s. has a direct relationship with found this approach that the qataris have some benefit and we should recognize that as opposed to just vilifying them.
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we would like them to behave differently but at the same time we asked them to do some things that are in our interest. >> her schanzer. >> thank you congressman deutsch. i'm not even sure where to begin. in terms of the potential benefits from qatar working with hamas or allowing hamas to operate their we have yet to actually see what the benefits are other than the fact that the israelis have allergic qataris have allowed them gaza, not to hamas but the people of gaza for reconstruction. on that the israelis would agree it's positive and we would all agree it has helped perhaps forestall a major humanitarian disaster and i think for that we should be thanked over from there you asked the question. it's not like hamas doesn't have other places where can operate.
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has a base in turkey for example that has a home base in the gaza strip. it operates out of west bank and out of sudan and lebanon. has a major presence across the middle east. why does it have to operate inside of doha where they get a certain amount of legitimacy for this and perhaps one of the thing to note is people talk about health qatar may have helped perhaps bring the conflict to an end in 2014. if you speak to the other actors in the region they will tell you whether it's the egyptians or the israelis are even others and they will tell you is the qataris and the turks that forestalled an end to the conflict. we continue to negotiate on behalf of hamas and i think in doing so it probably led to the loss of many more lives. >> unfortunately i'm out of town. >> the gentleman from has expired. the chair recognizes shoeman from california mr. cook for five minutes. >> thank you madam chairman. in my opening remarks i talked about the story of the north
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koreans working on the world cup and the figures that i read were about 3000. in the article that talked about whether they could be militarized and this is a scenario that is kind of scary. we talked about the fact that we have our largest military base right there where its users to set is insane or comment on a possibility. another dimension and another threat to this because every week it seems we have to reevaluate which is the number one enemy. >> i haven't seen this report so i don't want to comment on a report i haven't seen other than to say the north korea issue is a pressing issue and in some ways it's much more important than this one to be sure. in general i think we need to learn ways to leverage
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conversation and if necessary pressure qatar on a wide array of issues that we have with them and this would be one more thing to have to do that in a way that is flexible because we have many very positive relationships with qatar but i would argue the way to be flexible is not to say it's okay to have x number in the country or host anybody want from hamas. the difference between hosting certain leaders of hamas sitting in a hotel room as opposed to people who are now believed to be in lebanon to sitting comfortably in qatar for quite some time where he was literally plotting attacks against civilians. that should be completely beyond the pale. how do we have multiple conversations with the country at the same time. on some issues have agreement on some issues to. agreement. we have done it very poorly across administrations.
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>> does anybody else want to comment on this? >> is important when you talk about foreign workers and qatar. the 3000 au mentioned are a small number in relation to the 800,000 plus foreign workers that are active right now in qatar. i've seen the reports of north korean workers. the concern is not that they would be operational but rather they were effectively slave labor given to the qataris and whatever they were being paid was being remanded back to north korea and this was an inverted way or a backdoor way of financing north korea. these are the concerns we have. they believe the qataris have addressed this problem, the last i heard but i have not seen updates on this. >> the reason i asked that question having that debate and
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everything else about the sanctions against north korea and this might be another variable that would be included in this. any comments on what happened last year over that area and the state department was quite frankly at that time, this was a year ago maybe a year and a half, they were arguing on behalf of of qatar on the upgrade of the f-15s. they thought it would be in their best interest. i was kind of shocked at that in terms of foreign military sales. do you have any comment on that? i viewed it as almost middle east stockholm syndrome because they were very supportive of qatar with all its problems and it shocked me from a military standpoint. doctor, either one.
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>> i served in the pentagon for a few years on the middle east issues i can talk a bit about this. my perspective this is a problem we have with the gulf states. on one hand or arm sales are useful to our industry. >> i understand that but i'm talking about an upgrade. i understand your expertise and i spent a few years in the military myself. with regard to that project or weapon system which is more sophisticated than some of the others. >> i was just going to say my issue is i can't tell you about the specific weapons system and that specific upgrade i can tell you generally have an issue where we saw too much weaponry because they have the money and what they need is lower and technology to deal with counterterrorism which is much more important for their interests. that thank you very much and i
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yield back. >> the gentleman's time has expired. the chair rep an isis the gentleman from california mr. lou: for five minutes. >> thank you madam chairman in june either secretary of state rex tillerson stated we call on saudi arabia and the american emirates to ease the blockade on qatar. later that same exact day donald trump referred to the initiative as necessary and as you know a few days later the united states sold them 12 main dollars of fighter jets to qatar. my question to the panel what is your understanding of the current position on the sub called blockade? do we supported or two we oppose it for what is your answer to that? >> i will start and the others can comment. from my perspective for the most
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part i do think what it does do is causes confusion because secretary tillerson is trying to act as mediator and he's going out there and trying to do that. meanwhile you have some of these other comments coming from elsewhere so it will go to secretary of state and secretary of defense. emirates and the saudis will go to the white house and that's really not an effective way to conduct and mediate conflicts. i think it causes problems so i would say it's the u.s. with the policy. >> let me ask you another question. there've been various reports that the trump organization has has -- businesses in saudi arabia but not in qatar. as i've play any role?
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>> honestly congressmen i don't know their motivation was behind it. >> there have been various reports that jared kushner basically got stiffed by folks in qatar. >> certainly it's not something that i would have any knowledge of. >> let's move on to a question i mentioned in my opening statement. are their families being separated because of the so-called blockade based on their national origin? or any panel member? >> my understanding is yes there are issues where the qataris of a lot of people moving between countries in the emirates and the various gcc states and you end up in a situation where all country nationals had two weeks to get out. >> so you would separating husbands and wives if they
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happen to be different national origin? >> i have concerns about that but i can't speak for their policies. >> okay. i met with various representatives throughout the gulf state countries including saudi arabia and qatar. with respect to taliban they said it's true there is a taliban office in qatar that the u.s. asked them to open it. is that true? anyone on the panel? >> i will maybe take a first stab at that one. as i understand it there was a taliban presence that was already there in doha. there were representatives of the calm before the opening of this office and then came the initiative by the obama administration to negotiate with the taliban with pragmatic
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members of the group. they essentially authorized, will it became the taliban embassy. as i mentioned in my testimony this was something that was very frustrating to those within the afghani government who were struggling for there are recognition of legitimacy who felt it would undermine them and i've heard this from a number of u.s. officials on both sides of the aisle. what happened after that would be the trade for bowe bergdahl the american servicemen who went to sing in a tennis fan and this was facilitated by the qataris and the taliban to high ranking taliban officials and operatives ultimately came to qatar as well so they augmented the presence of very thin there. since that time the concern has not been just that there is an official presence of taliban inside doha but rather taliban officials, taliban militants
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have come in and reconnected with a taliban and some of the others. there is concern that it's not just that presence that was blessed by the obama administration but things of operational concern as well. >> think and i yield back. hepatoma notes that. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from new york mr. zeldin for five minutes. >> thank you madam chairwoman. this question is for anyone who's able to answer. this qatar view hamas as a terrorist organization? or maybe multiple choice. or does qatar view hamas as a legitimate resistance or would you give us some other characterization? how does the government of qatar view hamas? >> maybe i will start. the government of qatar does not see hamas as a terrorist organization.
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the violence hamas carries out is legitimate and continues to insist as this crisis has unfolded they do not agree with the definition of terrorism that their critics are using. again i see it as a poor defense. they know exactly how we view the problem and they are allies of the united states. they are hosting our airbase. they know the difference between right and wrong in the way that the left view and they refuse to recognize it and that's one of the problems that we have. i think as a postscript to this is the case with hamas to wealth might view it differently? how do they view the taliban? do they see them as terrorist? probably not. what we see as a growing list of factors where we would disagree
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on whether they are legitimate or illegitimate terrorists. >> does anyone disagree with that? what options do we have if at all to get qatar to change their view of hamas as a legitimate resistance? >> in the first instance there are reports that qatar has asked at least six hamas to leave the country. that's good. so long as there is no consequences this is a no-brainer for qatar. it can either spend money or do other things that make it more of a player. it has been able to make itself for a player in part reaching out to islamist groups that are beyond the pale for most and therefore being a key
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intermediary. we collectively especially coming right after the european court of justices ruling just now opposing the eu's designation of all of hamas, we in the west collectively need to make it clear to qatar by posting in providing services to a group that is committed to the destruction of the u.n. member state to civilians is unacceptable. i put that in different basket from qatar's support to citizens in gaza which the israelis fully support. in fact israel is a different issue. if qatar wants to be a responsible player in that regard fine but providing a safe haven to the leaders of the u.s. and eu designated terrorist group is a problem. >> has qatar weighed in to the best of your knowledge with regards to the u.s. moving its embassy from tel aviv to jerusalem quest are you aware of
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the nature of qatar helping in the mission to defeat isis? >> i think yes qatar hosts our forests -- forces that there pays where we have a central coordinating function that allows basically coordinating all of our operations in iraq afghanistan and syria and especially iraq and syria. it's a central element of our strategy and. >> you really should have clarified. do we have a base there but the nature of these relationships with other terrorist organizations and they are very well coming to just about
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everyone it seems in the region. so outside of the obvious, but can we add, looking at as far as qatar's other efforts not supporting, not allowing us to operate their vote would also be doing? ..
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>>
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i want to make sure that may be just a couple of? thoughts you mentioned turkey sold probably a whole other hearing should be done in turkey but that same source of behavior exhibited before we saw with the turks in similar ways and in fact, just yesterday the president of turkey was indo hot and they are strategic partners and we need to address this. we have very similar issues. they are freer images of one another they have been known
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to open the borders to allow fighters to go back and forth there is a lot of problems with the turks that deserve attention and i think the problem with kuwait that it is a mediator is somewhat ridiculous that they have been identified time and again by the treasury that to wait it is a huge problem probably you rivaling of cover - - pattern. it is not out of the woods but it has gotten a lot better for go that distinction goes to the emirate's but they still have their problems. when i began to say at the beginning the entire gulf of
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his day problematic region the saudis were c number 1a radical ideology had read now will looks as if they are getting better with this but as day improved that they have double down the budget qatar is the most popular. >> we have heard yes they're making progress but switching to do this for very specific to benchmark changes to having got specifics in writing or in person. so the question how long this has been going on to say we think they are improving.
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>> i will add that qatar in the here and now, right now has to do things that will stopper perot question of the result whole lot of things and not only cause problems because problems now. i am not making excuses i can explain why there would not provided but as several members have said they have been approached of those in i mentioned to some of my saudi colleagues that we are pushing too hard on general ideas of extremism because it's not like we don't have problems of her own. beware of pushing too hard on the television in qatar, uae, because compared to tell van their strolling into device with cash and as long as it was
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busted into real estate, no one cared. despite what they've done the past, they have turned corners. we don't expect hard to be thusey perfect we cannot tolerate some of the most egregious behaviors that they have done, even as i said in written test 20, some of the charges that have been against them are simply untrue. some of them are very true. >> thank you. >> mr. mast is recognized for five minutes. >> want to thank you for taking the time to sit with us today. want to get to something very quickly. we've been discussing the support of terror from different actors. terrorism isn't an enemy, terrorism is a tactic. it's used by an enemy. to that end, i like to hear from each one of you what is it that
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you think is trying to be achieved by the tactic of supporting district by supporting terror. what is the end of each one of you sees being played out? >> i think qatar is trying to make itself a bigger player on the world stage that would otherwise be by being a small peninsula almost an island, a very small population, most are foreign workers but it happens to be very wealthy. the wealthiest nation upon earth. capita and it's on another way to punch beyond its weight for making relationships with other islamist groups that it's been able to use his own benefit in saying they can be a middleman for you, too. that has proved to be dangerous. qatar has never had a situation where there was a cost to having
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the kind of relationship it wants and needs with us, which we like to have them too. at the same time they are having close relationships with some of the worst of the worst. >> i agree with matt. i think that overall qatar realizes that it's extremely vulnerable, that it is tiny and that it doesn't have the means to push back on some of it's very tough neighbors. it shares natural gas wealth with the radiance and they have to figure out how to get along. having proxies available to them is useful thing. by the way, having an american air base where they can bear their teeth at the radiance and at the end of the day they are trying to become wealthy and they have used whatever means
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they have to purchase power.e you see them buying up large chunks of london, washington, pain for proxies across the middle east, trying to push the muslim brotherhood into positions of power so that, they too, can rise to power. i think they've taken this way too far. >> just to add, i agree with what jonathan amanda said but qatar is also traditionally pursued a third wave foreign policy in the gulf. a lot of the smaller gulf states to sterilize himself with saudi arabia but cotter since 1995 there was a palace coup and they chose a different approach which involved not just going along with the saudi's but if you're a small country with a much bigger one sitting next you running the region, if you go at that
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country, you try to find every division you can in every opportunity you can to influence.sh it builds relationships of other actors. this is also part of the reason they have subtly different approach to iran which is more accommodationist but it also has to be with sharing the gas fields. this is about increasing their influence and about increasing their influence and being independent saudi arabia. >> you have each mentioned whato you thought the end was and were talking about terrorism, supportive care were talking about a kinetic action. were not talking about something cyber or economic but a very kinetic action. in that, being that qatar has been purchasing the foreign military or military equipment to 10,000,000,014 and what is
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the jump you make connecting thn dots. do you make a jump there or do you hear moving to the tactics of terror to conventional tactics that make is that the assessment you make? >> know, there's still a small country and they don't want to get into a fight. in their mind, this is not kinetic. there supporting groups and they make a distinction in their own mind and cognitive dissonance between district there supporting the political hamasfi in their minds. it's not quite so simple but that's what they think of it. i don't think this is a threat of regulatory military conflict. >> i would add when you look at qatar we've had having this conversation for the last hour plus and i think it's important to note that qatar is roughly 300,000 people. it's tiny.
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it has more foreign workers in the country than actual nationals. they are incredibly vulnerable. they are not picking a fight directly with anyone. this is why they chose that soft power approach and they bring the conflicts away from them. because problems for other people that only they can solve. this is the qatar way. >> my time is expired. >> thank you so much, mr. mast. god has granted me another opportunity to make good on the pronunciation. i am pleased to yield time to the man from new york. >> i'm going to pick up on something you said about the 300,000 people who live in qatar. i want to change my line of questioning based on that. there are one and a half billion muslims in the world and the challenge that we face in today's world district most muslims don't participate in
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this awful, horrific activity of terrorism and trying to promote terrorism and extremism and violence. t the challenges who is winning this battle to try to promotetl extremism and violence district there are 750,000 muslims live in indonesia, pakistan, india and bangladesh. the other 750 live outside this country's. the question is -- what congresswoman was talking about saudi arabia's activities over decades in promoting extremism all over the world things are dynamic and things are changing. some people are moving closer to our way of thinking, not to violence and extremism and some are moving further away continuing to promote violence and extremism. where would you place qatar where they are right now?
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>> it's a great question. i would say they have 1 foot in one camp and 1 foot in the other. this is what is maddening about qatar. on one hand they are hosting our airbase and they are a vital partner in our war on terrorism and they are investing to their sovereign wealth. they are investing here in the us and across the west and their investing in legitimate investments and they provided a crucial service in terms of providing hard capital especially when things got rough about a decade ago they were there and helping. the problem is they've use that as leverage so that we come to them and talk to them about their support for the various groups that we are mentioned, the jihadists in syria and libya, the television and hamas and we talked to them about this they don't listen. clearly >> if the people from qatar what to clearly demonstrate to us that they are moving away from
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voting extremism and they're moving closer to our way ofo ou thinking, the west way, what would be two-three things i could do to demonstrate that in a clear way. >> for my money, we should bef providing a list of people they should expel and it should be people who are part of the television and hamas in the syrian jihad groups. let me put it this way, i've heard from diplomats that the qatar's can't do that because it would upset their population and it would be very unpopular. we are talking about 300,000 people who live in an absolutete monarchy. if the premier wants him gone, they will be gone. it is that simple. we can ask. >> i only have one minute 55 seconds left. >> we're not talking about 300,000 people when we talk about the problems in guitar. were talking about a much, much, much smaller number. when it comes to their finance, were talking about two-three
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dozen people max who were truly concerned about. were talking about a small number of people in government need to act. this is one of the reasons it is so frustrating is because it's so doable. this is an absolute monarchy and the ever respectable security service and they have no tolerance for this type of activity targeting them in the kingdom but so long as the activity happens in the kingdomv is targeting others, there okay because it is some leverage. we need to make clear that there's more leverage to be had in having a wholesome relationship with us and europeans of the west and their consequences in terms of our relationship if they don't. this is taxable. >> if i could at one point, this gives us an opportunity to build leverage and go to the qatar's and say here's our list, if you want our support in this crisis, we need to see action on this. >> i agree with that.o >> i think this is real
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opportunity, the silverlining of this crisis is having our partners at each other's throats other than district i'd rather see them spending their time not try to get us on their site in washington but here's an opportunity let's turn it on them and let's see here is the standard we want to go by and here's all the countries in the gulf that we want to go by the standard. >> yes, please. go ahead. >> there's a mechanism to that. we created something called the term financial tracking center. there's no meat on those bones yet. knows no one really knows what that will be yet but it's a potential structure. we can put meat on those bones. that the juice gc wide effort we should be acting and demanding from all the gcc countries because is a problem is happening in all of them even if qatar and kuwait are the biggest
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problems right now. >> is a battle between instability and stability and there are criminals that are trying to promote extremism ideology and it's not a group i but individuals that you are pointing out that we need to target. >> thank you, sir. return to the gentleman fromalii california. >> for the record, briefly, last time you were in the administration split ten years ago. >> ten years ago with bush. >> yes, bush. >> state department went??. >> 2014. >> so recently, albrecht considered. >> all of you been in a position that this committee oversees and we don't oversee qatar or oversee kuwait, we oversee the places you work. i will tell you a story a bush era story.
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sixteen years ago there was a hearing in this room and we were evaluating the incredibly unreasonable activities of his dagestan as they had the audacity to want to stand there mixed 21's to a hostile nation. the other side of the story was they had come to the state department and come to our government in the bush administration said look, we are a poor country were trying to become a rich country and we have oil we want to turn these weapons into plowshares. we want to sell them off, we're not replacing them, we want to raise cash. they said can we sell them to? mr. goldberg, states that we can't give you a list. clearly, lucky wasn't interesting and bind them as they were trading and neither was bowing. my question to you is, each of
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you, i've been through these hearings on country after country and we are going to see whether it's the palestinian authority including hamas, whether it's kuwait, qatar, saudi arabia, will have these hearings and were always going to find one thing -- money is leaking too bad people from within these countries by individuals or, in fact, there may be a nexus to the government in some way. i want to know what each of you are prepared to do and should this administration do -- you alluded to this, to make lists of who you can give up you want out and to make lists -- in other words, how do we get the administration that has said solid, applicable standards so that we not it's so that we know it's not a mixed message. >> thank you, congressman. a, we can provide lists of people that shouldn't be here or
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be in jail and that you need to take action on. that's a very straightforward approach. there are other things i mentioned. >> if you provide that list, i will commit to forwarding -- and i hope my campus will do it on my behalf but i will commit to forward it to the administratioe asking them have they, and will they make that request. >> will take you up on that. there other ways of putting pressure on countries like qatar that don't involve the individuals themselves that make it more people. i mentioned the storm act which introduced in the senate and yet to be introduced in the house but this would potentially ladle qatar and on the other country which would then have a chilling effect on those interested in commerce.er >> my question is more narrow. how do we get, like those lists, specifics to the administration? one of the challenges we have is we pass these various acts and then there get to be debate
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about it but what i think i have heard throughout the day both here and when i was in the back is that there are specific acts that we should be asking companies to do, including in this case qatar. there are things they can't undo. the a mere trip we're visiting hamas and giving money for a hospital. we can on ring that but we can say that it's not helpful to say the least. one of my questions to each of you with my limited time is briefly tell us additional actst and can you agree to give us lists of things that you believe should work demonstration to get done. my hope is that it will not be passed a law that ties this future initiation hands but rather things you know be donet that we need to ask them why are they doing it. >> to be perfectly blunt, sir, i love point. >> they know because told them. we are happy to provide you
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information that we have arm treasury attaché and he works real hard all the time. this new mou will send a department of justice prosecutor to help prosecutions. there's no question about the names not only because we've designated many people have a very open conversation with them many times. my recent conversation to the senior qatar official said that, your former fbi, we need the fbi to tell us. i said no, sir, you have a good security service because i worked with in the past and our people are working within r regular basis and it's frustrating, when a senior qatar official says just a straight all the financiers are subject to prosecution that's not true, nor is prosecution the only tool in the tool chest. i'd argue that the problem here so the list but that they refused to do it and we haven't
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had any consequence for that you need them for other things have to be able to balance. >> i believe that's why our list forwarded to have more of a way not and i want you to answer my question was broader, not just guitar. it's very clear that we have similar requests from other allies or semi allies throughout the gulf. thank you, congressman. at one point. i know we're overtime. one thing the committee could do, for example, could ask for a report on what it could mean to drag for supply away from the qatar airways not because i recommend doing that this might be expensive and difficult and if we can wish to keep that base as a valuable asset but i don't think it's a point of leverage that we mindlessly say well, we'll keep doing this becauseht were doing it right now and i think that if the push the
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pentagon is determined to creatively think about alternatives the answer you always get from any administration is we have zero leverage here and we need the space which is an excellent case. that would be another area. >> the gentleman from rhode island. >> thank you for your testimony. want to start with you from aety doctor.ry to you serve the deputy of theit treasury and you understand the critical role that we play in advancing us foreign policy. as i hear you're 20, it reminds me how disturbing it is in's work completed it is that this administration has called for 30% cut in funding to the state department but has left really important positions vacantacant without companies at a moment that we are trying to manage this crisis in this very serious, to the middle east.
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at a time when terrorists continue to talk about efforts to pursue weapons of mass instruction, it's baffling to me that we would be vacant positions of undersecretary for our secure and i take it you all are equally mystified by that. >> it would be much better if we had the sufficient filled. >> great. thank you. i want to first talk about turkey. one of the demands that qatar has been to close the turkish military base located in qatar u in turkey has responded of course by bolstering its military presence as a strong show of support in my question is is this a real demand, what's the purpose of it will be the implications of the space that closed? >> what i would just say you have to understand we talk politics of this region and over
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all these countries are upset with qatar financing of muslim brotherhood groups across the arab world and they see it as a challenge to their view of the region which they would like to maintain something of the status quo. the turks have been strategic partners with the guitars and there's no question about it. nu they see this as a doubling down on the muslim brotherhood actions that they would and they see it as a threat. ano i think their focus seen on qatar for reason and they will tell you that they see the turks as perhaps the second in line in terms of the challenge to the regional order that they seek.kr >> is your assessment is thels texas qatar closer to turkey. >> they did need to be closer. they were already strategic partners but now i think, as i
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see it right now, qatar has few friends so they reach out to the turks and drawn closer to the turks and alarmingly the up to your closer to draw closer to the iranians and that's what qatar is adversaries read about in the first place. >> there was an initial list of 13 demands by the countries of the blockade and that list has since been narrowed down to sixt and it is able to be put out that the turkish base is no longer on that piece of commands. i think that the turkey issue is an issue for them precisely for the reasons that jonathan talke about but it's a lesser prioritr for them and their concerns about whether qatar is meddling in their own internal affairsth which they consistently talk about and that's really what they care more about than the turkey issue. iran, i'd add, it's true that
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qatar has a there's a real mix across the gulf on iran that's important to recognize. the gcc we've learned from this crisis that they are not homogeneous and the saudis take the hardy ontrack part is mine even within the uae to buy is much less so in terms of trade. i do think there's a diverse -- >> the curries have been trying to coddle the runs and at the same time maintain the dialogue with the iranian counterparts. what do you think is the rationale for that decision and the alternative locations. >> i think their country of 300,000 people and the majority of the wealth comes from this huge gas bill that they shareir with the irradiance. they own half in the iranians own the other half.
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this is geopolitics. you'll never get them to -- you don't hear the love for the iranians but you hear angst and they won't take a hard line approach like the saudi's i don't think they can afford to give an to the position they're in specific i would agree with that. i think a lot of this is driven by the qatar need for survival. i've heard from some of our friends in the region in recent months concerned that the muslim brotherhood in iran are not exactly at odds with one another. this preconceived ideas that because the muslim brotherhood is sunni organization that is fundamentally at odds with iran. that is not the case historically looking at hamas, you have this confluence of qatar support and iranian support and their baby more than meets the eye.
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this is something that i think is worthy of additional resear research. >> are you back. >> the gentleman from californ california. >> i appreciate your insights that you have provided us today. i have a long history with dealing with qatar and with those other countries, i have been here 30 years now and i worked for the white house before i got here. i can't help but lament that seems things seem to be going in the opposite direction than what we have as a positive potential 20-30 years ago and it did look like qatar and some of those other regions were going to go in a more positive direction and now we see is basically they are schizophrenia on their part trying to play both sides against all sides for these people think they can juggle.
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they think the world's greatest jugglers and they can handle both groups of enemies andmies. friends. so, let me ask this. will you talk to the people guitar -- and i have -- they will tell you every time -- there was one question earlier on this that they were asked to bring in the televangelist. they were asked to bring in al qaeda and these has blood and these various groups by the united government. even during the last administration, did we, indeed, asked them to bring in the taliban and have a greater opportunity for the tally band to use their area they are in cutter as dealing with the>> world?
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>> i didn't work in the last demonstration but i do not work work with issues with the teller man. can anyone answer. >> did we asked them to do it? i can answer for my understanding. we asked them -- we asked them to do it is because the tally band were already operating there in a former capacity. >> so, there's some verification that perhaps the united states did asked them to get involved what we considered terroristters elements. we know that the one trader was treated for a traitor and that was the were still we could have gotten. it happened via qatar.
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let me ask you this. i will be very printed here.e vp look, the clinton foundation has received millions of dollars of contributions and we know fromtu russian oligarchs -- how much has the clinton foundation received from qatar? maybe qatar has given money, is that right? >> none of us have those figures i want to something. there's some debate as to what the united states might have asked qatar to do regarding the teller man in it so clear. they asked qatar to the taliban was already there. >> all right. okay. i have one minute left. let me just note, madame german, i think it will.
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>> you have more time, don't worry about it. >> it would be fitting madame german that we make a request to find out if qatar has been the source of major donations to the clinton foundation. and if indeed our government during the time when hillary clinton was our secretary of state did indeed ask to permit these terrorist organizations into their country and this needs to be looked at very closely. we know that the clinton foundation was certainly in russia receiving tens of millions of dollars from russian oligarchs. let's just note that whether it's al qaeda or the muslim brotherhood or the jihadists or has blood, qatar has to make a choice. i do not consider the rebuildine
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of gaza to be a positive act. if indeed the palestinians are shooting rockets into israel and israel retaliates for qatar to step forward and rebuild everything that has been destroyed by israeli retaliation, what we are really doing is encouraging the people in gaza to permit the shooting of rockets from their territory into israel. no, people the fact is that if indeed israel is retaliating against an attack we should not be cleaning up the mess, we should those people whose committed the attacks in the first place should be paying a price for it. we don't want attacks. we want there to be peace. this is the two state solution that was supposed to come on this.
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instead, palestinians have been shooting rockets and creating terror attacks against israel. let's discourage that by not rebuilding their buildings if they have been destroyed as a retaliation against this type of terror attacks on israel. let me just say again and i agree with this, this is not been a hearing about all the rest of the states. frankly, i don't find guitar any worse than our saudi friends. again, there is schizophrenia going on there. we look at the muslim brotherhood and the impact it is having throughout that regionn and we realize that both in qatar in saudi arabia they embrace the muslim brotherhood philosophy which has served as basically the intellectual foundation for these terrorists and whatever you want to call them al qaeda or hezbollah or caliban or whatever, i sold, we
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need to make sure it's the time of choosing right now. the juggling has to stop.ul i would hope the royal family in qatar and the people in qatar decide to be our friends because they have that choice but they continue down this path they will be deciding not to be ourur friends and decide instead the muslim brotherhood and thehe terrorist, so i hope this hearing today, send the message. >> thank you. mr. schneider is recognized for the same amount of time. >> thank you madam chairman. i apologize in advance because i have a concurrent markup in judiciary. if i jump up and leave it's because i have to go vote. please don't take it personally. thank you for your time here and sharing your perspective. there's so much here and to try to understand and my colleagues
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touched on intuitive aspects of our relationship with qatar and the difficulties in fully defining the parameters. i will ask a leading question -- would it be better for us in the region if thomas, tell a man from al qaeda, weren't raising finances? >> yes, it would be better. >> yes, it would and it would also be better if they didn't have the presence there that was legitimized. >> the reason i asked the question is you can make lemonade out of lemons. you can find in a difficult or bad situation something to pull out of it but i think what i'm hearing is that we are looking to the qatar's two and the financing of terror in their country and to be a full partner
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in fighting terrorism in the region. is that a fair summary? >> it is but it's just as important that we finish off today by noting that we need the other gcc countries, this coalition of four, to be flexible and allow qatar some space-saving ways to do this. so far, they've been pretty hard line and nothing is good enough and we absolutely must demand the guitar makes real subsidence and verifiable changes but in order for that to happen we have to have honest conversations with our other allies in the region and insist that they be flexible enough to find a way and this will have to save space-saving gestures as long as the changes are substances and verifiable.th >> thank you. that's is trying to get to.
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i see that sentiment. it is a matter of we have a base it is important base to work were trying to do in the region and the work we are doing is longitudinal and will be solved overnight and we need to have a long-term strategy. mr. goldberg, you referenced it as well -- as you look at the region, what would be the benefits to us having a more diverse platform, diversify platform rather than just a base? >> there is a benefit, there's always a benefit to having more diverse options. we have other options in the region in central asia, have a base in the uae and bahrain and the more options you have the less leverage they have over us and at the same time to do a
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real evaluation. we lost the base and they've invested a billion dollars int the base during the '90s and that's a ton of money. they do have technology there and runways things we don't have elsewhere. i think it would -- on top ofe that, if you end up in a situation where we lose access to the base that we try to not be able to connect as many operations against iraq and syria and we can bring in a carrier and that would offset the ability to do things in the asia-pacific or europe and it's very competent in question. it's certainly worth exploring rather than making it a secret e cow. when whenever you make something a sacred cow and it becomes invaluable to you you have less about leverage. i really do think we need to focus on getting all of our friends in the region to
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de-escalate this crisis because if you go back and look, the president in may, went in full confidence in was about extremism in iran and what have you done for two months, what has secretary tillerson do and what are we talking with you today about the fight they're having a month these other. they're spending 90% of their time and had difference tell me they're spending 90% of the time on this issue, the not speaking about the things you want them to think about. i think it's a really important piece of trying to de-escalate this and find a solution is someone terrorism. >> my last line is as for balancing these different issues consistency of message on our part, transparency on the part of the qatar, what is the impact of the detergent message or inconsistent coming out of the administration?
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>> i think it's clear that we have a couple messages that are coming out. on one hand, we hear that this crisis is not an urgent issue for the administration to handle and at the same time that it's something we want to handle. i think there is perhaps some of the actors in the region think they have a free hand to act when they hear parts of the administration speak and perhaps a few more constraints. i think consistency will be here. i personally believe we should be sending a message to the qatars that we demand change and that ought to be the first thing that we say and follow up with that by saying, as we demand this change, you will be with the other four actors involved in this crisis stand down while we take over. that will be the way to get this to a soft landing and perhaps one of the space-saving mechanisms that matt discussed here today.
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i would like to see more american leadership on this if possible suspect to use your analogy, as well, the ferrari of the other cars speeding is a fair to say that we need to have expectations of all of our allies. >> 100%. >> i would just say in my conversations with the officials this past week was clear that the conflicting messages coming out of the initiation are affecting them. spoken to both people on each side of the conflict in both feel they can listen to the part that is saying what they want to hear. i've also been in europe recently in conversations with counterterrorism and they've been asking me and no longer a government official but what is washington really thinking. our allies are confused as to what our position is. if we are to more of a role there -- again, there's not a lot of meat on the bones of that
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but let this be a mechanism to which we say through guarantees to us and bring others in and qatar will make the following changes in guitar has to be willing to make those changes and verifiable ways and we can go to them and say hey, this is how it will be done and this is what the verification will look like the guitar have to be willing to make those changes and do it in such a way that it's verifiable. >> great. i see that i am out of time. i see the accident time and we agree that we have to be clear in our expectations with our strategy in working with our allies in the region. >> thank you, mr. schneider. the gentleman from florida. >> how would you describe qatar's relationship with iran? >> uneasy. although, a bit more ambiguous than perhaps what has been previously described. uneasy in the sense that they're
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in our small country, we country and are looking across the persian gulf and a powerful country that is on the precipice of a new nuclear weapon they need to figure out a way to get along with his neighborga especially one where they share the natural gas field. i think that explains in general the dynamic but we have been hearing that there could be more corporation than was previously seen. this is essentially what the gulf quartet has been alleging against qatar that it has been working with the iranians or perhaps with the proxies and i've heard allegations not just of hamas where we know there has been a cooperation on all fronts but also potentially has below, potentially those in yemen and we heard those things and there's not a lot of evidence yet to prove these things but there is something worth watching.
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>> there's also reports that the money has gotten there from iranian backed military groups. >> correct. >> what about the muslim brotherhood and the relationship the qatar has the brotherhood? i read your testimony and you wrote about some of the people that qatar was supportive of the government in egypt and then when the general took over qatar was a haven for some of these people. i have heard reports that some of these israeli radical clerics which is one of the biggest muslim clerics is in guitar. is that true? a lot of those now have refuge in guitar. >> on her percent. in the previous golf crisis one of the demands of qatar was that they exiled some of the but when
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you look at what the qatars invested in egypt during that one year plus of the more stable it was reported $18 billion and it was real significant investments. if you look at their support for various actors in syria and they were throwing their weight behind the brotherhood there and in the early years of the uprising, the party in tunisia, the qatars were big benefit is there. at this point, it is undeniablea that the qatar are the number one supporter politically and financially of the muslim brotherhood in the world. turkey is number two, i think. this is the cornerstone of the debate as i see it between qatar
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and its neighbors. the neighbors are furious because they do not want to see the muslim brotherhood come to power and they believe that the qatari's are continuing to finance and support the brotherhood. >> what is the reason for doing that it's a very wealthy country, a huge wealth, royal family, is it ideologically that they want to do this work and has caused them a lot of problems in the region. >> i agree that it's cause problems but at this point when you look at what happened it looks like a gamble that has not paid off. many of the other gambles throughout the arab, it looks like money has effectively gone to waste. we see this as their leverage, a counter leverage to their with who they have a pretty significant rivalry. it's their way of punching above their weight, as matt mentioned, they continue to pursue this. i think there is certainly an
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ideological approach here as well. >> i have run out of time but i want to get to it. do you have any insight into the brotherhood relationship or did he cover everything? >> >> i think jonathan described them but there is a relationship, long historical relationship and i'm more skeptical about how much of it is ideological and how much of it is your political playing. the qatari's are third wave. if it was deeply ideological while they build a strongg relationship with us, at the same time. to me, it's more that they don't want to play the same rule and they want to be an independent actor and they will pursue an open door policy told him all kinds of different players, some of which can work with and some of which are a huge problem. that is the motivation and it doesn't necessarily explain the behavior or excuse the behavior
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but again, sometimes it can be useful to us of some of these things but a lot of times we need to press them harder to stop. >> i'm out of time. i yield back. >> thank you so much. sheila, now we are so pleased that two members were not on our subcommittee but i know they are very interested in this issue and i'm very pleased to yield to them and we will start with ms. jackson-lee of texas.te >> let me think the chairwoman for her leadership in the ranking member for their leadership of this committee ane the important testimony they've given by the witnesses. i'm in the same predicament. i've been able to listen to the testimony but i may be called to a vote as i speak. i will rush quickly to thank the witnesses. i want to speak to mr. goldberg, if i might, i noticed that the title of the hearing is the assessing the us qatar
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relationship which is extremely important, i think. if you might bear with me i will ask questions or laughs in an orderly factor. would you indicate or confirm that -- it'll go back as far as the clinton administration, the bush administration in obama. in those administrations, would you venture to say that qatar engaged positively with united states in bill clinton -- yes or no. >> yes. >> mr. george w. bush split yes. >> president obama. if you just want a blanket assessment, that was a positive relationship with carter and the issues they were addressing. >> i would say yes. look, i think we have a good relationship with them on a number of issues and the most important being the arab base when we look at them. >> forgive me for a call to the vote. during the bush administration
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do you have a recollection or by news or research, that then secretary state asked them to engage with hamas? >> i don't know but one of my colleagues might know better than me. >> okay. so you mentioned or in the discussion we mentioned that the region is an important region and i, from the lawyer's perspective, say that none of them in the court of equity are with the clean hands. i would offer to say that stability is important, security is important and in your testimony i'd like you to repeat what you said about engaging so that we can encourage the stability and i understand the list has now been in essence pared down to about six of the demands but how would it be best for us to effectuate that
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engagement where all of the parties recognize that there are elements of their policy dealing with terrorists that should be eliminated. >> sure, i think the most thing and matt brought this up a couple times during the hearing about the mou being a good starting point. setting one bar for everyone to meet on the question of terror financing would be very valuable. there is the equities are problem, the qatar is a problemt but the uae has had its issuesto and holding them off and say the united states will hold them off for one standard in applying the standard across all of them becomes beneficiary to us in terms of dealing with the overall challenge and also helps alleviate the crisis among them. i also think in terms of dealing with stability and deal with the region is hammering home the point that we won't spend all of
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our time dealing with the conflicts and it's hard to get back to the bigger issues, and their stability. whether it's isis or extremism or some of the things that iran does in the region that is problematic that's where i'd like to see the relationship. >> any infection by congress for placing punitive measures on one or the other would you be that as a positive act? >> i wouldn't recommend doing that. i would recommend having a standard that congress apply to everyone across the board and,m qatar as john said might have the fastest or might be the 90-mile. hour ferrari and the longer to go. >> let me follow up with my concluding question. and bouldering one over the other and i happen to have been in the region during the visit of the administration and meeting with at that time, president of egypt ando
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discussing these issues either very strong commitment to the region for its security relationship to israel which we want to ensure their safety. would you make the argument that, as you just said, focusing our attention on the larger picture in trying to ensure the stability of the region by way of setting a certain standard would that be helpful in terms of making sure the region remains stable for other big fights and also the security of israel? >> i do think it would. you mentioned emboldening, we made a mistake by essentially signaling a green light and a t blank check to the saudis with a pleasant visit to the region and basically led him to believe there's nothing they could do wrong and the stronger message would have been will take a tougher stand on the issues you care about whether it's iran and i would not advocate walking away from the nuclear deal we should stick with the nuclear deal but we want to take a harder stance with their
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behavior in the region but we also expect you to clean up some of your act and we have expectations of you. this is an oblate check this is a quid pro quo or agreement between the relationship to the partners. >> thank you for your destiny. forgive me for my focus questioning but let me think that your lady for her kindness and i like the blank check analysis that we should not give that we should work together for harmony. i like that word as well. thank you so very much and i go back. >> we are thrilled that you were able to join us. mr. connolly who is on her subcommittee is back with us. we'll you'll turn to him now. >> i think the chair. doctor, your opening statement you made an allusion to a
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reference to maybe paid lobbyists for governments in the region descended on her offices and paid a visit. i'm not sure to the point of that what you are getting at but i want to give you an opportunity to explain. there are lots of lobbyists in countries including israel said to send on our offices and we don't necessarily to that anything negative and we were you suggesting -- >> no, i think the point of trying to make is that there is a lot of it right now. >> what? >> there is a lot of noise and were seen a lot of different actors -- >> i'm sorry, do you mean about. [inaudible]confli >> about this qatar conflict but in general when we look at the permissive nature of what we've allowed to take place across
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this region, in my view, it has been the direct result of yielding to these actors and over time this has become the boiling frog. although i heard that's not scientific that frogs actually can be boiled and they won't know about. regardless, what i would say is that over time have come to just accept the fact that there are terrorist financiers running around the qatar and that there's terror financers in kuwait we've been asked to look the other way. over time we've grown used to this because they have engaged with us on deals to buy weapons and investments here in the united states and because the happy face here in washington. what i would like to do is try to look beyond the messaging and get back to the facts here that we have problematic relations. >> right, but could it not be that we also have troops stationed there was work we have
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the largest base in the region in qatar. >> we do. >> maybe we have conflicting interest here. not justifying behavior but it's not a simple matter of paid lobbyists were influencing us and money is flowing around because were looking at us interest in the region and we see a conflict. >> i would argue in response to that the one of the reasons we have been able to keep that base is that we continue to hear that they are doing all these other wonderful things in there helping us out so we will deal with this terror finance problem privately and over here left to deal with it. ten years later and we still have this problem and we now have a full-blown crisis. my argument is is that we have not dealt honestly with the problem of terrorism financing
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in qatar for long time and i would argue that we have been dealt honestly with the terror finance problems of the other countries as well. >> if you go that route, i'll add to your list. i'd at the saudis. financing. [inaudible] and madras all over the world has fomented nervous amounts of terrorism and extremism one could argue. mr. gulliver,. >> i am just wondering, added to that what is the policy and should we be doing if i but how about the state department? the ambassador resigning and arguing that because increasingly it's difficult to wake up overseas and explain what the hell is going on in washington dc and what it means as the ambassador and of course proposed 22% cut to aid in just
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the polling here but could that have something to do with our inability to effect some kind of understanding and agreement and reconciliation among the gcc? >> i will say this. yeah, that's a huge problem that we have vacancies and it's a good example that some potatoes and had to go on on his own for four days and i'm not sure i would have recommended that. i don't think this issue merits that unless you thank you have an agreement or some breakthrough and it's very obvious to those of us watching that you won't have an agreement. i do think that in a situation like this you sent is working pretty much have nobody. especially the assistant secretary, someone who worked in the state permit for a number years, every department in every agency there's that key level in the middle at the individual who was senior enough to reach out and get in front of them immediately and still close enough to those working in
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experts and agencies could pull in. at the state department those are the assistant secretaries and they are the key, in my view, they don't exist and there's no connectivity between entire departments and the expertise in the secretary. yeah, it hurts us on this issue and all issues. >> madame german, most of. [inaudible] had a question and if i could ask on behalf of. >> i'd be honored, please go ahead. >> miss a pringles question and i'll put you first mr. goldberg with the removal of our military base give license to or make worse the behavior in question. >> that's an interesting question. i hadn't thought about it precisely that way. it may. i think the bigger challenge logistically would be that were to remove the military base it would be incredibly costly. the country has spent a billion dollars on the base and it would
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then strain our ability to conduct operations at the same tempo as the iraq, afghanistan. >> i think the question is implied here by having the military base in qatar would it be worse without it. >> yes, it works both ways. i agree with the notion that we had no relationship that this would dramatically shrink our relationship qatar and reduce our leverage over them. it would also reduce their leverage over us so there's a bit of a two sides to it so there's a hard struggle to make but the option is now that the military bases there to not walk away for those reasons but to also clarify that we have other options so that this is is a dig on the can hold her head. >> my time is up. thank you madame german
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they're not necessarily over a barrel but it's a relationship. i don't think we use it very much leverage right now. >> i would agree we need the leverage. what a recommend in my written testimony is when he to do an assessment. it's not to say when you do leave although i think the arrangement is not sustainable. it's not i think the right message we should be sending to the rest of the region. but this is i had to be binder. we can move some assets out of that base because we decide we need to redistribute and we
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can't ever rely too much on the cutter rate or we might say we can't move anything. at the least and by the way this hearing is doing a lot of good. they know right now we're talking about whether or not we should move the base, whether we should assess moving the base. this is incredibly important. it takes leverage away from them and puts back in our court. >> on behalf of myself and congresswoman franklin. >> thank you very much. we love to hear her voice even had absent ship it and now we're so pleased to chandu ms. maloney. thank you for your patience in sitting to the subcommittee to be able to ask your question. thank you. you are always welcome to be part of our sub. >> thank you, madam chair and thank you allowing the privileges to attend your meeting and give me the opportunity to ask the question. and thank you for having a hearing on a very important issue which is a top concern to secretary tillerson.
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that is why personally went to the region and he has expressed his deep concern about peace and security in the region, not only for americans and our base, but also for all of our allies. he's publicly expressed his concern that our allies, these are all allies of america, and that he's concerned that if he continues it will break up the gulf cooperation council that has been an important area of cooperation with the united states and our ability to collectively combat isis. he also has called for the embargo or the easing of the embargo as its harmful to the stability of the region, stability of the gulf cooperation council and it's difficult for our base, the embargo affects also the american base.
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so his vision i believe is a good one, would you say, that we should figure out how to work together? we are all allies and the enemy is not each other but the ending is isis and other terrorist activities in the region. would you agree with secretary tillerson? >> yeah, i would. i think that this whole crisis has been a distraction from other things we should be dealing with. you know, i'm not sure i would have put as much into it as he has necessary because i think that part of this is these parties have to also saw the themselves. and be responsible about that. we can play a think a positive role and also try to get them to de-escalate and guaranteeing any agreement in trying to put all of them on terror financing questions. so you know, i agree. far interest, for the use interests, the fact the last two months of the gulf have been
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spent on this instead of all the things we prefer to spend our time on is not good. it would be better if we can find a way to get over this. sadly i think right now there's no indicators in the near term that's going to happen so that we need to at least start managing the situation and also getting all of you different actors to a least tone down the public rhetoric and mask the a few months from the actor things cool down may be privately they can start to make some deals >> he has begun focusing on terror financing which i believe is a way forward, and i understand that he has created certain criteria already for the gulf nations to cooperate with them. and hope that they all will. that would be a huge step forward on allowing access to their financial tracking of where money is going come if you crack down on the terrorism financing, then you're cracking down on terrorism.
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are you aware of any agreements that the state department has made with these countries to combat terrorism financing? i was told qatar has entered into an agreement to share their database come to share the information to combat terrorism financing. are you aware of that? >> i am but i don't know if you want, that is a real expert on this question. >> first of all, thank you for your questions. i want to start by pointing others complete consensus across this table in the need to de-escalate this crisis. we need to be focusing on the other more important issues. several of us have also said some other charges against qatar are baseless. but some of them are very much grounded in truth and they affect all the other issues. >> my question is are you aware of agreements, concrete agreements, between qatar and the united states or saudi arabia and the united states are
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-- >> i'm getting to that. >> or any of the countries specifically to work together to combat terrorism financing? >> yes. so that's what i was getting at. there are many agreements. there have been several going on for years, bilateral and otherwise. there are two new ones. one came out of the riyadh summit which was agreement to set up a care finance tracking city. the tft see. there's no meat on those bone jet. if a look at the treasury statement they have lots of great ideas bes that spoken to e of the people wrote the statement. aspirational but there's great foundation upon which we could n build and in my previous statements i've already pointed to that something we could use as a face-saving gesture to move forward and out of this crisis. another speech i think that's a great idea, dr. levitt. we should appeal to all of these countries to join us to combat specifics on how we would fight terrorism financing. i personally want to thank secretary tillerson for entering
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in with his entire effort to personally try to solve this. talking about allies. we need to get together. and i'm not aware of any other country that wants to host the u.s. military. i just recall being invited to leave one country very quickly. we were told to leave saudi arabia, and i'm not aware that any other country in the region once to host a u.s. military. are you aware of any other country that wants us to come in and be there, dr. levitt? >> we do have basis in the uae and then bahrain. it's not like this is the only base we have to addle think the basis the ultimate issue. if i could just as there's one other agreement as you noted secretary tillerson side and m.o.u., memo of understanding with qatar. there's no meat on his bones but they are very good bones and this was a could be built on the
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pier i do want people to walk away thinking now there's an m.o.u.s and how we can cooperate. >> i think that's a very important issue, dr. levitt. what you could do to help us is give us exactly what kind of meat should be added to that bone, and then we should present a detailed agreement on combating terror financing to all of the countries in the region and see who will cooperate with us in a specific way. i must tell you it is deeply important to me. i represent the great city of new york, and lost 500 friends. we lost 3000 on the day, but literally thousands and thousands more that were exposed to the deadly fumes from the terrorist attacks. so we know that there are efforts to attack new york and other cities, including the city. we have intelligence on that, and other cities, and anything we can do with our allies to
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combat terrorism can save future lives in america, and other places. and i for one support secretary tillerson's effort to end the crisis. let's join hands, let's combat terrorism. let's combat terrorism financing. because if they can't finance their activities, they can't attack us. i represent a district that just six months ago, two bombs went off. you ask where did he get the money for the bombs, how did theyoulearn how to put them tog, who helped of them? so terrorism financing is very important i think to the world and especially to the united states, and especially to new york city which remains the number one terrorist target in our country. so i want to thank all of you for your work in combating terrorism financing, and i would welcome any ideas of how we could put more strength behind efforts to combat it, and i
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think that if we combat it we would also strike against the financing of terrorism activities in other countries which allegedly, i was listening to my colleagues in their questioning, where very concerned about and where they are teaching terrorism, and we need to stop that. my time is way, way over. i want to thank you for being here and thank you for your work, thank you for everything you've done to make the world safer. and thank you madam chair. i don't know if i'll have the chance to public is senior committee meeting out very, very sad i am that you decided to retire and leave us. you have been an incredible leader. >> i'm going to miss all of our colleagues. >> your wonderful leadership on this committee at this chairman of this committee has been extraordinary. first woman to have had this chair. where very proud of you. >> thank you, ms. maloney. thank you so much. and feel free to come back to our subcommittee. you are a valuable member, make
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you an ex officio member. thank you. i just have one last wrapup question. i know you gentlemen have been testifying for hours now, but mr. schanzer, this tension has been going on for such a long time. why do you think that it's neighbors decided to take action only now? is or something else that you believe reciprocated his? >> madam chairman, thank you for the question. it's with a one of the questions that are think we all should of been asking all along. i think when you talk to most animals in the town they will tell you hate each other and it's a brother, the arab spring. well, what made this thing iraq in the spring? there were some reports perhaps because they paid ransom and money went to shiite militias as well as too bad actors in syria. but there also been some recent reports out of surface recently and there is a little bit of confusion over this but i think
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it's worth unpacking. there is a report from the uae ambassador to russia. he went on bbc and claimed the qatari provided intelligence and yemen and this led directly to the death of dozens of gold soldiers in the yemeni operation. i've also heard -- golf -- i've heard it may not of been al qaeda that they share this information with a rather the houthis and other forces in yemen. this would be devastating for qatar if this were to be true because of course would mean they were sharing information with iranian proxies which is an absolute redlined for the gulf states. so this allegedly happen in the spring. i've not been able to confirm it but a u.s. official come all i can tell you is this is what i've been hearing from people who generally known in this to town. >> thank you very much. and i thanked the audience and witnesses for the patients.
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excellent testimony. you will forgive me that i was gone a little bit from the podium. we had our built on the floor calling upon iran to release the hostages, the american hostages who are citizens and residents, and we were overwhelmingly approved, so that's what i was absent. and with that our subcommittee is adjourned. thank you to all. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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>> this in return for day three over the health care law. they will gavel in that can and the first note of that is expected at 2:15 p.m. eastern. live coverage right here on c-span2. >> sunday on q&a, mark bowden talks about his book "hue 1968" one of the longest and bloodiest battles of the vietnam war. >> the battle of hue shocked me because the saigon military command was so out of touch with the reality of what was happening in the street. they literally got a lot of young americans killed. because what general westmoreland denied that the city had been taken. it was a fact but he continued to deny it for nearly the whole
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time the battle was fought. and as a consequence would never concede that sheer number of enemy forces that were in the city. so small units of marines and troopers were being ordered to attack positions that were held by overwhelmingly superior enemy forces in entrenched positions. >> sunday night at eight eastern on c-span's q&a. >> justice department officials will be on capitol hill in the morning to briefed members of the senate judiciary committee on the requirements for foreign agents to register with the government. we will have live coverage starting at 9 a.m. eastern on c-span3, online@c-span.org, or.org, or listen live on the free c-span radio app. yesterday treasury secretary steven mnuchin testified before a senate appropriations subcommittee picky was joined

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