tv INSA Intelligence Conference Combating Terrorism CSPAN September 27, 2017 4:09am-5:24am EDT
>> american history tv. all weekend, every weekend. only on c-span 3. >> now intelligence experts from the u.s., canada, united kingdom and germany take a look at the intel community and its role in prevents potential terrorist attacks around the groeb. they discuss the challenges including self-radicalization on the internet. that was part of a recent national security conference in washington dc. it's just over an hour. ladies and gentlemen, please wp welcome to the stage chuck. president of the intelligence and national security alliance. >> so, here we last session of the morning. before lunch. im not sure that's the best thing for these guys.
the last year when we were wrapping up the summit and we were talking, kind of saying jeez how well that went and doing self-congratulations. we got serious. and said to ourselves what do we need to do better? and we will ask you later after we wrap up to dwif us your feed back for this year. last year we were going through that, a cup of things were apparent to us quite quickly. one was as tish likes to remind me, we need to always be thinking about diversity on the panel. and we'll continue to do better on that. the second thing that we thought about was you know, this intelligence business is increaseingly an international
business. and so we knew we wanted to do something that brought an international flavor to the summit. this year. i won't preach, but the business of intelligence is no longer about just secrets. it's a global business now. and no nation can maintain the global awareness that they want in the information age without corporation. we gt a got a good start. we need o know we all know we need to do better. than just five eyes. this really is a global effort to make sure that we keep the respective nation safe. i have the pleasure to introduce the guy that's going to lead this discussion. the guy that needs to introduction. that's charily allen. the couple of things i will highlight.
47 years at the cia. four years as under secretary of homeland security for intelligence and analysis. now with the -- but an amazing friend and volunteer. to both. an awful lot of this conference specifically this panel but several other aspects of the conference wouldn't have been possible without him. i'll leave it to him to introduce the panelist. i want to thank patty and chris, and nick for participating today. over to you. >> thank you, very much chuck. it's a pleasure to be here. it's good to have something more than just americans sitting here. we have a true international panel. we're delighted this idea came from tish and from chuck. on my left initially we have
patrick, patty. he's a deputy national security advisor for national security and resilience. united kingdom. we have christian executive director of the canadian integrated tourism center. government of canada. he has former military served as chief of defense intelligence. in the past. and canada. and founder of the canadian armed forces intelligence command. next to him, we have mr. frederick. he's head of director international terrorism and international organized crime. federal intelligence service in germany. and he's been with the bnd for 35 years. and he has served in the german navy and also i would told was a lawyer. of course we have a man that needs to introduction either.
nick. bho serv who served for the american government since 2014. before that, for two years he was a deputy head of nctc. served with the national security council. he's a remarkable american and truly one of the icons of this government through successive administration. as a matter of spro duction i would like each colleague to give a 3 minute perspective on his view of global terrorism. how is it the threat? how's it growing or decreasing? what or his each country each person doing for their country as an order to combat this. we see isis going away in the physical sense. it's seems to be a very enduring
global threat. along with other groups like al qaeda, and similar terrorist groups globally. i start before we get to questions. and ask patty to speak about three minutes from her majesty government in london. >> thank you very much. thank you everyone for coming to this session. and thanks for our host. what a joy it is to be here. i want to start just with by saying thank you. so this isn't a dha goes by that individual citizens of the united kingdom aren't safer because of the work of the community that is represented in the room. and that's double true because there's a wonderful endeavor about the american intelligence community which infects those who work with it. so they endeavor to improve. i like tom's line yesterday. about you don't have to be bad in order to improve. and my word we learn a lot and
gain a lot by working with you. i want to say thank you. my second thing is i am the coo coo on this panel. these good gentlemen here all do analysis and assessment to some degree. and tell policy makers what the problem is for the policy makers to fix. i am that poor policy maker. so i'm used to nick's counter part telling me by way the threat has gone to critical. and i have to what to do. i'm the doo coo coo. i'm a policy guy. so i have four quick thoughts for you. about the threat. the first is, my word we talk about the threat of the united kingdom we have significant disrupted plots. we have had attacks that have gotten through. we have had to talk to the public about this. we began the year saying the threat was severe and attack is highly likely. here we are. we have had four attacks.
and so there's something interesting the way in which we talk about threat and the way in which we educate the public. of course professional public. of course professional colleagues, polts colleagues, but also the public about really what we're dealing with. first thought. second thought, from the united kingdom's perspective at the moment we are facing a stratified threat and almost our biggest risk is that we don't understand the different strata or the different segments of that threat and end up focusing on one of them. it's very noticeable with european colleagues, particularly those that are not as active in the world as the united kingdom that they tend to concentrate almost wholly on daesh, islamic state, isil, whatever we're going to call it. and when you talk to them about the residual al qaeda, the way in which al qaeda has reorganized, when you talk about self-radicalizing people who may not be in their communities but are in our communities and are radicalized through the internet they may not focus on that. we're dealing with a stratified
threat. we're dealing with a problem in our communities of people who do not travel. and become radicalized and move to violence. we're dealing with conspiracies that do not really involve an overseas element. neither the attack at london bridge nor the explosive attack in manchester really had a foreign driver. these were british plots by british people. their parents may have been from overseas. they were not. so we have a stratification issue that we need to address. my third thought for you is we have a fundamental problem when we think about the threat and that is persistence. that there are groups over there, no matter how often they are degraded, no matter what geography they lose, who persist in certain things. they like attacking totemic buildings and sites. they like attacking aviation. they like the idea of chem, bio, radiation, nuclear. and now they like the idea of cyber even if they're really no good at it. and the thing about it is they just keep going and they keep
going and they keep coming at us and we have darwinian effect when we work against them. when we work against them in terms of military suppression of the threat and when we work against them in terms of the protection that we create in the aviation industry in control of the sale of chemicals and awful those things. they find their way through. and that persistence is the real issue with the threat they're facing, that there isn't a single intervention that's going to see it off. and that's what we're learning despite the endeavor of the people in this room where you've had one effect, we've had wonderful effect in afghanistan. you've had wonderful effect on the pakistanis in the tribal areas. we have in somalia. we have in yemen to some extent. but we haven't broken that problem of persistence. and finally and please ask me lots of questions about this, we've got a big problem with terrorism and that problem is called the internet. because when mosul is gone, tal afar is gone, when kayyem is gone down on the border in syria and iraq, the place where
islamic state are going to have us and hold us at threat is going to be online. they can communicate without us being able to intercept them. we won't have lawful access to this data as tom bossert said yesterday. they're going to organize themselves into groups. they're going to train people online. we see it happening. that's what manchester was. and they're going to draw new recruits. and if we do not address the terrorist use of the internet we're going to fail in this task and not deal with that problem of persistence. >> thank you. chris? >> thank you. let me echo the notes from before, how privileged i feel to be part of this, to be back in washington with old friends and new friends to talk specifically about terrorism. the idea that as you heard before i grew up on the military side while collaboration and five eyes beyond five is nato is how you do intelligence on the
military side, certainly in the ct world, it has to work that way, and intelligence is based on trust and trust is built by connecting together and exchanging ideas. so the fact we could be here, we could look at each of our views of terrorism, i think it just adds to our ability to do a better job, continue to do a good job in the future. because canada shares a border with the u.s. and we've had the great privilege of having an ocean on each side, the way the terrorist threat looks to us is a bit different than it would look from europe. so i thought maybe, and i don't want certainly to insult your intelligence here, but put a bit the evolution of terrorism in context by using the old -- actually new old term of 1.0, 2.0. so if you look at the original terrorism as it worked very much
till probably about 2000-ish, terrorism 1.0, it was all about doing violencee or terrorism fo achieving political purposes. but in there the idea of the perpetrator achieving martyrdom at the same time was notes part of it. you did terrorism but you expected to survive that day and do another terrorist attack somewhere else. the air india attack in 1983 in canada. or part of that. and then we really moved to this -- to the idea and al qaeda started this, or really popularized that. the idea of doing martyrdom when you do a terrorist act. which caused a lot of issues for countering it because once the person doing the act is ready to
die in it you can't dissuade them on the way there. you have to disrupt them well before. and of course so the epitome of this would be the 9/11 attack against -- again against the world trade center or the paris attacks by daesh this time, isil, the islamic state in november of 2015. that would be -- i would see that as terrorism 2.0. terrorism 3.0, the generation of terrorism that is now most impactful in canada for sure, is the inspired or enabled terrorism. as was mentioned, somebody goes on the internet, gets radicalized, gets -- adnani, the minister of war and communications for the islamic state back in september of 2014, came out in a speech and said you know, guys, you don't actually have to come to the islamic state to fight, it's
better you stay in your country if you can't travel and attack from there. and continue this idea of martyrdom. so die in your attack but do it at home. and the two attacks in canada, the two successful attacks in canada actually happened within a month of that speech. both candidates, both attackers achieved martyrdom, died, basically suicided by police as they were doing this. so now we're in a world that's even more difficult because not only can we not deter them but they're going to attack you with a blade, bladed weapon or a truck. there are no signs to help us deal with this. and you will have noticed that certainly in the attacks in europe they often wear fake suicide vests. that's not to cause more problems. it's just to make sure that they are not going to be taken alive, that they will be shot by police so that they can achieve that
martyrdom issue. and that is the primary threat in canada. the ability of a organized threat directed from overseas where people travel, money travels, things travel, we're relatively good at being able to catch that. so what we're not going to catch are the people that self-radicalize or radicalize online and then decide that day to go and do something. i'll just take one more minute to talk about the type of weapons. because these people are self-radicalized, they don't have the access to the technology except reading what they'll get on the internet. it will be low sophistication weapons. i mentioned before vehicles, bladed weapons, the thwart add tack last summer in ontario was
a pipe bomb that tha in the end didn't detonate. well, it detonated but not in the intended way. not killing anybody. so it's more difficult for those lone actors to be doing something. on the horizon are uavs. because we see them being used in theater by bad guys who've managed to weaponize them somehow. that technology hasn't quite crossed the atlantic, hasn't actually left the battlefield as a weapon, but certainly uavs -- we can see -- we can just imagine that somebody will get that great idea back in the homeland to this. and the last point on that -- and the last point on this is the attack in australia that was zruptded last month or two months ago now, it was clear in the press that there was a chemical disposal device as part of one of the devices that was there.
so this idea of using chemical as a weapon. and the recipe on how to make this appeared in ramaya on the internet one month before or two months before. clearly some of that gets picked up and it's something we have to worry about. the last piece i'll talk about, terrorism in canada, is right-wing extremism because often one causes the other and they work in tandem. there was an attack on a mosque in january of 2017 that killed six people and wounded another 19. it was certainly motivated by hate. and it has been characterized as terrorism. but the -- in canada right-wing extremists are rather careful not to overtly propose or advocate violence. so it's a little -- yes, it's
definitely hate. it's a bit more difficult to turn to call that terrorism because the network that would provide this is not quite as apparent as with sunni extremists. so i'll leave it at that for now. >> thank you. friedri friedrich? >> thank you very much for being invited in this esteemed group. i'm very glad that i can hear and talk to you about the threat to germany, terrorist threat to germany and europe. the recent terrorist attacks which claimed many kashlts in various european countries including germany are a manifestation of the mounting terrorist threat posed by jihadists to the western democracies. contrary to multiple media reports, the dangers emanate not only from the so-called islamic state but also from al qaeda. the latter has never given up the hope of a major attack in europe. the reason is that a large-scale
attack has not yet materialized is that such plots have always been foiled through close cooperation among intelligence services. thanks to intimate cooperation of security agencies, many of these plots are already identified in their planning stage, tracked extensively, and can be foiled well ahead of their planned execution. what is more, many years of massive law enforcement pressure on al qaeda have severely curtailed its capability and capacities. the past few years saw complex terrorist attacks, for example, in paris and brussels which were carried out by several perpetrators acting together in a coordinated manner. the most recent attacks, however, were committed by inspired lone wolves or by lone actors operating under orders or guidance. the weapons used in these
attacks included explosive belts and firearms and most recently also tools that are easy to obtain such as knives and vehicles. the islamist terror organization shifts in preference toward attacks by lone wolves or mini groups is attributable to al awlaki, the former leader of al qaeda in the arabian peninsula, who touted leaderless jihad as early as 2010. the online machination "inspire" created him -- created by him also published concrete instructions for how to carry out terror attacks without leadership. already at that time there was a discertainible trend toward simplicity in executing attacks. the terror groups had realized that complex attacks, plotting is highly susceptible to disruption. this gave rise to multiple
appeals to jihadists to operate independently and to use everyday items as weapons. hamza bin laden, the son of al qaeda founder, has recently issued an appeal for lone wolf attacks. the homegrown factor too has played a crucial role in numerous recent attacks with ostensibly integrated young muslim migrants or western converts being inspired to commit terrorist attacks in their home countries. as a rule they become radicalized through internet and through social media. in some cases this is a rapid process. are what is striking is that many of these people are petty criminals who were probably also radicalized in prison and who are not very strong in understanding islam. contrary to other european countries the percentage of refugees among arrested and suspected perpetrators is this
p disproportionately high in germany. refugees include genuine refugees who became radicalized after their arrival in europe and bogus refugees who were sent to europe by the islamic state leadership. the deportees and returnees are more difficult to control due to geographic distance. in july 2017 the number of islamists who had left germany by syria and iraq to join jihad amounted to around 930, while the number of would-be jihadists who had left europe since 2011 aamounted to roughly 5,500.
the biggest problem is comprehensive terrorist training for example in i.s. camps, the combat experience gained and the brutalization resulting from a lengthy stay in the battlefield. the string of military defeats sustained by islamic state in syria and iraq suggests that a growing number of so-called foreign fighters might return to their respective home countries. at present, however, there is no hard evidence of a rising tide of fighters returning to germany. we assumed that many of them tend to resettle in syria first and are then likely to be killed in clashes with syrian and international forces. we have, however, identified an increase in the number of wives and children who are willing to return. this upward trend will probably increase in the months to come. thank you very much. >> thank you, friedrich.
nick. >> thank you, charlie. and of course thank you to the insa leadership. there's no more important conference this year for national security officials. it's also a privilege to be on stage alongside such close partners. really one of the most satisfying parts of my job is the engagement and interaction i have with colleagues from our close intelligence partners. i'll just pick up on three quick points. some of them triggered by comments of my colleagues up here. and i'll start with the point that patty made about stratification of the threat. we devote an intense amount of energy, intelligence collection activity and analysis at trying to peel apart the different sides of that stratified threat we're facing. understanding whether threats are inspired, enabled, directed. and we do so because it points us in the direction of disruption. it tells you what you need to do to disrupt. the strategy you need to deal with the british citizens that
patty referred to is different than the tools and strategy you're using to disrupt a cell out of raqqa or somewhere in syria or iraq. at the same time as much effort as we're putting into peeling the different strata and threats we face i constantly have to remind myself and our analysts and our customers that in the end those distinctions and the differentiated analysis i apply sometimes doesn't have a whole lot of resonance when you're speaking publicly about the terrorism threat. i may feel quite good about the fact we have done a tremendous amount of work to prevent al qaeda from carrying out complex multifaceted attacks that would have mass casualty effect here in the homeland. does that make the citizens of orlando feel any safer or any better? i would doubt it does. similarly telling the citizens of manchester that no, that attack did not have a connection back to the isis leadership operating out of raqqa, probably isn't particularly helpful in making them feel safe or making them feel good about what their
government is doing to protect them. i say that not to be self-critical or critical of our partners but just simply to remind ourselves that often the victim impact is what you need to keep in mind when you are speaking particularly publicly. any satisfaction we have in our efforts has to be weighed against the real world impacts terrorist attacks have. the stratified threat that patty referred to and each of my colleagues has amplified upon has driven us in the direction of much closer, deeper and more intimate intelligence cooperation. i think it would be safe to say if we were having this panel ten years ago and we were talking principally about the al qaeda threat i certainly would have been up here on stage with these partners. our partnerships would have been just as strong at that point. but probably the number of partners with whom we would have been so deeply and intimately involved in counterterrorism work probably could have been counted on two hands.
the number of states we were actually deeply working with each day on al qaeda-related matters didn't number in more than a dozen. in the isis world we're living in now, stipulating that isis is but one component of the threat environment we face, but in that isis environment we're dealing with right now i would argue that number probably extends to 35, 40, 45, 50. there isban't a country in euro with which we're not engaged in cooperation, analytical, information exchange p you can march around the world. the middle east, north africa, east africa, southeast asia, asia more broadly and keep 5ding up countries and come to as i said 35, 40, 50 partners with whom -- on whom i would argue our security depends every single day. the sharing the level of cooperation extends well beyond the operational. it increasingly extends into the analytical as well.
the premium we place on sharing analysis with each other, on understanding information, sometimes the limited information we have, the premium we place on that is i think greater than ever. the last thing i would say by way of thinking beyond just this panel, the sharing of information that we do horizontally across our different intelligence services is something we'll talk about at some length today. but keep in mind also that certainly here inside the united states the pressure is on us to engage in vertical information sharing as well. the ability to translate what we learn at a national level in our intelligence collection analysis process, the ability to turn to thain useful intelligence to state and local actors here is something i feel increasing pressure on every day. it is not useful for me to know the details of the potential plot in a particular place overseas if i can't turn that into intelligence that also tells an airport security manager here in the united states how it to do his or her job better.
or someone who works in a sheriff's office, how they might deal with a nice-style attack or an attack of the sort that took place at manchester. so even as we focus on our international stuff here today, keep in mind that the intelligence enterprise that i'm a part of here has an increasingly important homeland security component. i would argue we're better at this ten years -- today than we were ten years ago in terms of sharing that information, making it consumable and accessible to our state and local partners. i'm sure they would have a different perspective. they always want more. they deserve more than we're able to give them. but i feel pretty good we know that is on our list of things to get better at and we'll keep doing it. why don't i stop there, charlie, and look forward to questions. >> thank you very much. you heard the theme here of violent extremism, radicalization. so i'm going to combine what's coming up on the ipad with some of the questions that i jotted down with my executive assist t assistant. and try to tease out a little more of this.
i served in the george w. bush administration where we worked on ideology. but things have xhad. violent extremism have conducted more attacks in europe than the united states. in part because of the proximity and the land corridor between the levant and maghreb just across the med. and also most of the attacks, people that have said hereby of the panelists, have operated below the radar. but when you see the biblical influx, as jim clapper used to say, of refugees into western europe, is there more that the united states should do, or is the u.s. government as well as the governments here represented doing enough to counter violent ideological, in this case islamic extremism? i'll start with patty. he's already thrown out a big challenge in the area of the internet. >> thanks, charlie.
two thoughts really there. and i'm going to dive in into a segment of the problem. many of the people we're dealing with now who have gone to fight with islamic state or are being radicalized in our communities or are acting from our communities to radicalize people in the united states or australia, that's something we've seen in recent years, are very young and know almost nothing about islam ideology. almost nothing. and the paperwork surrounding the westminster bridge attacker that he left behind was so superficial as to be almost not an indication of political motivation. and that which was in the van that was used or the vehicle used at finsbury park mosque by a far right attacker had almost no ideological content. whilst i don't want to get caught -- of course the french
would have an intellectual debate, a great intellectual fissure about the nature of this. i still am struck that i think we're dealing with what in these cases, with what olivier roy has been talking about as the islamization of radicalization. so that you've got people who are inclined to violence, they're looking for something and they stick a sticker on it and they find a justification. and their grip on their dean, their religion, is so superficial as to be less than you get by watching a television documentary. against that backdrop there are some really significant questions about what we're going to achieve if we address ideology. it's rather different from what, say, the saudis have done in their reradicalization programs where they have people who have genuinely understood al bakarah. we don't need to do that with the people we're dealing with. that isn't the issue. the issue is more of a
sociological issue. there's something to talk about in terms of countering the ideology, countering the message. but we run the risk of not addressing the immediate problem we have if we focus unduly on that with this current generation that we're dealing with in certain of the segments. that's my first thought. my second thought is my word, the internet is a wonderful thing. and it's a dreadful thing. it's a dreadful thing in the way in which it facilitates a dissociative identification with individuals or ideas in echo chambers. it means people can radicalize very, very quickly. and i think we're reaching the point where we absolutely countermessage. we absolutely try and structure the way people try into the racket with the internet insofar as we can including collaboration with industry in such a way that they don't reach
the radicalizing content. but actually our issue is less about the detailed argument within the content but the present of the content at all. and i think we have reached the stage with islamic state in particular when if we are focused on the content of their communications online, of their presence, of the spaces within which they're interacting with others we're not going to succeed. what we actually need to address is their presence online, is not allow them to be there and persuade the companies not to allow them to be there and that's what we've done with people who exploit children for sexual purposes. we've said if you're a child sexual exploiter, even if you're putting up a picture of a fluffy pussycat, it doesn't matter. we're going to take it down or not allow you to use this because we know what you're doing. and that's the way we have to be i think in this case with islamic state. >> friedrich, germany's had the largest influx of refugees.
you've had this largest problem of a million that came in in the fall of '15, cy15, and then into '16. how do you feel about the whole problem of radicalization? some of the people seem to be subject to this. and as you say, they may be young and have little knowledge of islam or the koran but they join the cause. is there any comments from your perspective on how to deal with this problem? >> thank you very much for that question. first of all, we have to register the refugees. we have to know who's coming in our country. that's the first step. this is already managed now since fall 2015. the second thing is we have to follow up the refugees to their various whereabouts, you know, to their camps where they have to wait until they're
proceeding, asylum proceeding and other immigration proceedings are processed. we have to see and to control, we the services, but also all members of society. it's a social problem. members of society. they have to follow up and take care of them. there has to be a sort of integration process, not just, you know, lock them up in camps until the end of judicial proceedings comes. and we have to watch and to find ways and means to entertain those peoples if i may say so. not to let young men just sit
down and do nothing. we might be able to put them into a sort of working process or whatever. they have to be employed in a way, entertained in a way, watched in a way so we can see there's a radicalization under way. because in a couple of attacks we could see that those people came as innocent refugees to germany and were unfortunately radicalized in europe or in germany. >> chris or nick, do you have anything to add on the violent ideology that seems to -- and i do have a question on right-wing extremism. but, say, on violent ideological islamic extremism. >> i would like to echo or jump on the comment from patty, the idea of religious ideology is
very much the excuse. radicalization and terrorism in that vein is very much a political radicalization to violence for political aims as opposed to the religious bit. on the radicalizations of migrants, the experience in canada is that the first generation of migrants are very happy to be where they are. they remember directly how bad it was in the country that they fled. so we rarely see issues of radicalization in that first migration. the second generation is where it gets complicated because they feel disconnected from what their parents had. they don't feel quite completely welcome where they are. they don't quite fit. and those are the most -- the best recruits for potential radicalization. so certainly in the canadian case we're not too concerned about the people that have arrived in the last couple of years from war-torn areas but
were on guard for what the next generation will do. >> that's an issue here in this country with second-generation somali americans. maybe nick will talk a little about homegrown extremism and what worries him the most. >> sure. two points i'd like to make on just the broad topic of countering extremism. one is that my humility has grown pretty dramatically over time with this basket of issues. patty referred to himself as the one policy maker here. in a previous set of jobs i had a similar position. i was responsible at times for helping articulate strategies that said we would counter violent extremism in this part of the world or that part of the world, basically promising we would produce outcomes. and on time horizons that were utterly fantastical, probably at the time, but certainly in retrospect. so when i think of the problem now of countering violent
extremism i can only get my head around it if i break it down into something more manageable. otherwise, it seems to me like trying to boil the ocean, trying to move the globe in a certain direction just seems beyond our reach. and so i'd rather not waste time and energy and resources trying. where i feel a particular obligation, though, to be very hands on and very practical with the shuxs we offer is here in the homeland. our population of homegrown extremists we have found in most cases there was somebody somewhere who saw, knew or intuited that something was amiss. up to 80% of the cases we've looked at very closely along with the fbi, up to 80% of the cases in recent years that we've examined closely, someone was aware of what was going on. if there was the right touch, the right connection, the right intervention it's possible that person could have been taken off of the path that they were on. that is not a catchall. that is not a cure-all. but what it tells me is we have to do a much better job as an
intelligence community and as a law enforcement community of making information available to community actors who are going to be there long before the fbi shows up, having opened a full-blown fbi -- full field investigation. that's where i can i think hold ourselves to account more directly. what are we doing to share information to educate communities around the country about what they're seeing, what their krim grant populations first, second, third generation are experiencing and what they need to do to take someone off the path before they carry out a horrific act. i can get my head around that set of tasks in a way i can't get my head around solving conflict in every region of the world in which there's some version of a sunni islamic extremist problem. >> thanks. i'd like to turn just a little bit while staying on the whole issue of isis and radicalization. isis sort of takes a converged approach to terror.
they use cyber to radicalize can and then they use encrypted messaging to facilitate attacks. how can we partner and use information sharing? threat intelligence on dealing with cyber terror. especially in twarlting attacks against our critical infrastructure. i think there's quite a bit in the press right now on potential threats to the critical infrastructure of this country. and how do you all view, and i'll start with patty, the going dark -- the encryption problem that has been spoken about, particularly by the fbi's intelligence officers. >> that's a big question, charlie. >> it is. >> isn't it? >> that has some of the civil liberties in this as well. >> that's fantastic. i couldn't have thought of that
question. let me go to the going dark. >> that's a good place to start. >> not least because most of my visit this time and the last four times to the united states have been including testifying to senate judiciary subcommittee. the house judiciary committee has been exactly on this question or one as pekt of this question. so let me get into going dark. so undoubtedly we're going dark and agencies are going dark and that comes from a number of things. that comes from darwinian effect that we have through our success. that also comes frankly through the development of technologies, some of which are desirable, some of which frankly are not. and there's an objective of obstructing the state. when tom bossert talked yesterday morning about lawful access to data it seems to me that's just a critical thing to have in our minds because it isn't only terrorism but if we broaden it out so much crime and harm that comes to the individual is now enabled in some way by network systems
running internet protocol that, you know, we need to get into the point at which you reach a threshold where it is right for the state, for law enforcement, for intelligence agencies to have access to the content of those communications. meta data's interesting too. but the content really matters. the thing i've been working on in particular is -- and when we talk about this i must confess we're talking with an industry, some companies want their interaction with the state to be regulated and want to make a contribution. some want to sell privacy and the fact they don't cooperate with the state and hope to win customers by doing so. i think that's reprehensible myself, but still. and that causes a degree of complexity. one of the things that happens is when you start talking about one thing you're obstructed in achieving it when you talk about another. what the british government is doing is picking it apart. as we say, we're trying to eat the elephant one leg at a time. and the leg i'm trying to eat,
which is really important for two reasons which i'll just quickly lay out. and really important for european cleeolleagues in particular but actually for all colleagues. is at the moment american law constrains companies who are operating in other jurisdictions or providing services in other jurisdictions, for honoring the warrants for intercept in those jurisdictions. and that's just simply a matter of american law. this is abo this isn't about spying or listening to people. this is about simply whether or not the british state can know if one person communicates with another using an american-provided application as we find in over 95% of crime and terrorism cases, whether or not the british state can have data about that communication. and so i am pursuing a very simple thing, which is a piece
of legislation which i have the backing of this administration, the obama administration is also supportive, to reach the point where a british warrant can be served lawfully for data relating to united kingdom investigations, not u.s. persons, on an american service provider and they can provide data, they're safe. beer safe. the united states is happy. >> chris, could you speak on the whole cyber issue, the whole encryption question of isis, and you see it in canada as well as here in the united states. and we have the whole -- in canada under your prime minister he has great protect for civil liberties, civil rights of the canadian populace. can you comment on this issue and how complex it is? and difficult to find solutions. >> yes, absolutely. i can try a bit at it. rather complex as you mention it.
come back fought point patty made about the ability of bad guys, terrorists, to use cyber weapons. so they advocate or they talk big about being the cybercaliphate and all of this. but when it's a question of doing an attack or impacting others, they're very much amateurs. not really quite in the game yet. although they're trying hard to get there. sxeenltly they'll find out how to contract criminal organizations. but we're still not there. where they are very good at using internet and other cyber connections is in the recruitment. as we've talked about, using social media. and then have adapted in a darwinian sense how they would do that. it would be hard to meet in a dark spot because you can't attract anybody. so you do have an internet site
or chat group or whatever, where you start talking on issues and once you get a few hooks then you invite them to go to a place we can't listen. that has become the mode. encryption is stopping us from being able to see the whole picture. we can see the invitation but we can't see the conversation after they've been invited. dealing with that connection between civil liberties, right of the states to know with the proper legal connections. it's an interesting concept because before the advent of xhux technology like this, the state that reserved the right -- and i'm sure it works in the u.s. it works in canada. i'm sure it's the same in europe. the state through the legal process, a judge could actually ask to know everything about me
or authorize the state to know everything about me. the only thing that we've reserved that the judge can't order me or the state can't order me to do as a person is the client lifts their privilege if i'm talking to my lawyer that's the only place where the state has said that's all right, that's off limits. but anything else that i do the judge can ask me as i'm in the witness box where i was that night, what i was thinking about. i can be -- my personal thoughts can actually be out there for public view. but somehow because we've put that in electronically, now we think that becomes more private than what i can do at that point. at one point as we evolve over this for it to work we actually have to re-establish that trust between the population, me as a citizen, and the -- and the state, including the safeguards that come from the judiciary to
be able to achieve those aims. but it has to be sold. it has to be convinced. that trust has to be regained. i think we're a bit behind from the government's side on this. a hot of for-profit organizations are trying to sell us the other idea. >> the european union and germany put aw great deal of concern into privacy, civil liberties. yet, you know, out of the middle east and across from the maghreb you do face some increasing problems it would seem to me dealing with not just the messaging of extremists but then dealing with encryption and getting into the complex issue of how you deal with privacy. would you like to elaborate on that? that's a big issue when you go to brussels.
>> it's a good question toward a german. we have a very, very strict data protection law. our public is very sensitive on stassi and gestapo methods. and therefore it's -- we have this very strict data protection law. but i think there is a growing understanding that we have to adjust our legislation to the european level, to the french or british level, to have a certain balance between protect iing privacy and discovering of course unlegal things like international terrorism. i think that's the first step, that we have to adjust legal --
the legal framework. and i'm pretty sure that this government or, you know, in 14 days we have federal elections, next government will tackle this issue. but the other thing i wanted to stress is an address to the technical experts, you know, what we have to find is some sort -- because we have a mess of data in the social media. we have to find and invent some sort of social media monitoring tool. i don't know if something like this exists, but i think we have to work on those things because isil is vanishing from the soil. they're going -- they're going cyber and internet and we have to find the right tools, the technical tools to fight them in
this area. >> thanks. patty has an additional comment, and i want to hear nick's views as well. >> so i agree with friedrich. i think there's an issue of what goes on in social media and there is something that monitors. it's called facebook. it's called prita. it's called google. these are companies that process data. they know what's on their network. the british commission looking at the murder of a british soenl in 2013 found the british state could not have spotted and prevented the death of this soldier. he was half beheaded in the street. but facebook could have. and i think there's a really compelling moral argument that results from that. and that would be my answer to your question about how that's monitored and how it's run. >> nick, you want to wade into this great issue of cyber and encryption? >> only in two very brief ways. they aren't particularly prescriptive or taking us in the direction of solutions. but i will describe who things
we're doing to try to address how our terrorist adversaries are operating in the current media environment. first, because of the kind of engagement with communications providers that patty is referring to, because that communication -- engagement with those companies is so important, we are trying to broaden the aperture of information available to them. we are going to make sure we burden them with knowledge about how their tools, their technologies, their platforms are being used. in some cases that will lead them in the direction of more unilateral action they can take. and in many cases we are told they prefer to be compelled rather than to act unilaterally. but i think in some cases we've seen positive action by companies acting on information they have themselves become witting of. so i think we're going to do everything in our power to share more information, to create more of a flow of information not just on one-off basis but on a regularized way to try to drive them to take action on their own. second thing i would say is because of the way in which isis
has in particular used this particular of tools it's changed the way we do i think the more hard-edged counterterrorism work in the conflict zones around the world where much of this material is being generated. individuals who engage in that kind of activity are now from our perspective every bit as much of a threat to us as those who may be constructing i.e.d.s or developing the kind of chemical technologies that chris referred to that we were concerned about with respect to dispersal of chemical weapon devices. so those individuals, if they're engaged in this kind of activity, are self-nominating in a way themselves into a new category. and they will be a much higher priority for the whole u.s. counterterrorism and international counterterrorism apparatus, whether that's collection or the full range of
capabilities we bring to bear and being deliberately vague on that. >> okay. thank you. i'm bouncing back between the ipad and questions because they all seem to flow together. and this has to do with technology and future technology. we use it for a lot of good things. health care. dealing with a host of things in finance and what have you. and yet we see and fear that adversaries, whether state or non-state, promoting terrorism, that they will continue to use new technology. we have questioned on can artificial intelligence help with dealing with the threat of terrorism. what i would like to see was where do we stand in leveraging commercial technology? i know that innovation is occurring not just in silicon
valley but right across europe and certainly in north america. canada as well as the united states. and then what about technology that terrorists may use? certainly foreign states have the capacity who are adversaries to move toward bioterrorism to wmd. and i've gotten questions from the audience on wmd. it worries me a lot. bioterrorism really worries me. i think i'll start with patty and go to nick, then, to friedrich and let chris bat cleanup here. >> there are two things to say. the first is i think there is fantastic opportunity in partnership p technology industries in giving us advantage and frankly whilst we don't have darwinian effect we
might have catastrophic effect on some of the techniques used by terrorists. and that's true in the information technology area. that's true with the companies i just mentioned. they have the potential to come up with some answers to the kind of wizard of oz effect that terrorist groups are able to create online, making themselves seem so much bigger and more compelling. but that's also true in terms of explosives, radiological and chemical material, chemicals of concern, combination of chemicals of concern. there's a fantastic opportunity for partnership and to give us advantage on policy makers and the public some calm against the threats, the persistent threats that face us. so that would be my first thought. my second thought is we've learned this lesson twice, haven't we? we've seen in afghanistan, we have that extraordinary -- the testing of chemical weapons and
other weapons on goats. in this famous al qaeda video. we recovered that. you remember that? >> yes. jalalabad. >> mosul university's been an interesting place and the innovative use of a variety of chemicals including one including as you referred to from uavs and the weaponization of all of these chlorine traps and these techniques, the lesson we learned is when there is a space and even a relatively low-level industrial base available to terrorists, they'll continue with their persistent pursuit of weapons that cause great fear and mass casualty. i think biotech is one we have up there and there's a lisk that a terrorist group will get a volunteer who's a giant he biotechnology knowledgeogist and that will take them somewhere. but to my mind it's going to take that kind of bring for a
breakthrough. within the united kingdom one of my responsibilities is national resilience in the round. i worry about things like pandemics and the way society's going to function. once one gets into that, one begins to think of the issues one has around medical and biological threat. just natural biological threat. and actually i think that gives us a lot of the answers in that area and the way in which to address it. >> i've always maintained some degree of confidence that we have a technological edge over our terrorist adversaries. good news. the bad news is that technological edge has become more narrow over time for some of the reasons patty identified. the access to information anywhere on the planet. plus the physical safe haven
problem that continues to create opportunities for terrorist groups to create laboratories where they can operationalize these technologies. there's no doubt but that technological edge that we've enjoyed has narrowed. the good news on the back side of that is i think we can regain the technological edge in the way patty described. the job we face is to pedal as fast as we can on our current counterterrorism disruption efforts to make sure that during that period when we restore equilibrium, at least the equilibrium i believe is there, that we don't suffer the kinds of attacks that would leave us grievously wounded. and i reason i have that optimism is i think at the end of the day the level of resource, the level of innovation, the level of entrepreneurship available to our societies in total vastly, vastly xreeds that which is available to our terrorist adversari adversaries. which leaves me optimistic.
though very clear-eyed about the threats we may face at any point in time. >> we have about four minutes to go. i have at least one more important question. but what about the issue of future technology he in use by terrorism? >> first of all, i think the doors are wide open open for public-private partnership. all the agencies are very much interested in the latest development and to cooperate with private companies. second remark is we have on the abc threat, nbc threat by terrorism, we see in single cases isil is trying to obtain commercial drones and try to use them, maybe, you know, for dropping a dirty bomb.
that is very easy to obtain and similar of using a car or using a knife or whatever. so i think they will refrain from developing a complex chemical or biological attacks because they want to have the sudden spectacular blast. and the sudden spectacular blast is not being provided by biological bomb. so i think we have rather to look if they use new technologies like drones or something like that. >> chris, how does canada look at the threat of advanced technology in the hands of terrorists? >> i think the main point i'll make is threat being increased capability and opportunity. we can see, it we can read them, we can hear them. they're fascinated with any types of weapons of mass destruction. capability is a lot more
complicated and sometimes some of the stuff they talk about you think it's a good thing they never went to school. but the idea of hiring somebody or managing to convince a biotech person to come on board would possibly be -- is one avenue. but i think the real threat for us is the failure of imagination for us to understand the technology that we actually have. and just to take the 9/11 example, using commercial planes, you can get in -- this is high technology. that type of technology i'm sure exists now. the type of technology we use day to day but we failed to have the imagination of somebody ruminating in their cells or anywhere else. or for months at a time at one point they'll go mm, i have some of these ideas i will not talk about because i don't want that to be the seed of somebody else. but there are some technology that exist you that don't have to master it completely. you just have to be imaginative
on how to use it that could have those same consequences. >> lightning round, final question. we've run out of time, my colleagues have told me. i cut my teeth on state-sponsored terrorism in the 1980s in hezbollah, and i followed it in 1982 from its origin and followed it day and night, believe me, for years. iran is considered by many experts to be an exporter of terrorism. there are differences in that. they continue to use hezbollah inside syria, and hezbollah and nasrallah remain very much active and have been so. how do you view tehran's involvement in terrorism today not just in the case of hezbollah lebanese but they support shia militants in the middle east, south asia, and where there are shia militants you seem to find some iranian hand at some point. so lightning round.
i'll start with nick 37. >> i get the opportunity every year in testimony before the congress to go on record on these issues. i won't go too far beyond what i typically say. and that is what we take the threat of shia-linked terrorism seriously. i think we take it as a given that any state to state conflict involving iran would invariably involve asymmetric tools that are available to iran. and so we view hezbollah in particular as being a global organization with global reach and global capability. and we are prepared to address that threat in that way if necessary. it is something that is -- it never leaves our mind even as we focus on isis and al qaeda. >> patty? >> so my work we need to set ourselves with this. this goes to the first point -- one of the first points i made in my first intervention.
i talked about stratification. this may be quiet at the moment but these are people with phenomenal capabilities. these are people who had an ability against aviation in the 1980s which arguably islamic state and al qaeda have only achieved in this decade. we need to set ourselves against them but we need a different set of tools. the tools we use against a mass terrorism of the daesh kind or isil kind are not the kind that are going to catch the iranians out. we need capabilities set against a state and state actor. the lower level of what we need to do against russia. >> chris, you served in afghanistan with the canadian forces and you saw aspects of iranian influence in afghanistan. could you quickly -- >> i think i'll build on what patty said. when we're facing a non-state actor, a terrorist, there's only so many levers we can use. although they can be very effective. when we deal with a state actor or state-sponsored terrorism, sometimes the lever that we have
to touch are not the terrorism lever themselves or the counterterrorism levers. at least as a state they have other levers we can press to make the use of terrorism as a tool more painful. and that's how i think it is going to be dealt with. >> friedrich, how's germany's view of iran as an exporter of terrorism? there's always the jvpoa we know. but i have a long memory of a guy named ignad memia who i spent day and night trying to find. >> i must admit i'm not very good on state-sponsored terrorism, you know. i concentrate on daesh, on isil, al qaeda and so on. i just want to do a general remark. one of the jobs of foreign intelligence services is also to talk to the devil. we talk also to those states, or
we try to, who are being rightfully accused of sponsoring terrorism. iran as far as i see is also in some way threatened by isil. and we have to take into account that we have to talk what islamic terrorism is concerned also to the devil. >> thank you very much. this has been a good and interesting conversation. enjoyed it. [ applause ] >> okay. we're going to -- we're going to take a couple of photos up here in just a second. but i just wanted to say charlie, patty, chris, friedrich, nick, i think the very presence of you here doing this should give us all optimism that the cooperation is good,
and we all know it needs to get better. thank you very much. for all of you we're going to reconvene in here again at 1:15 sharp to hear from the directors of all of the national intelligence agencies. and then we will without a break roll right into a discussion between tisch long, our chairman of insa, with sue gordon, the new principal deputy director of national intelligence, to hear about some of our national intelligence priorities. so again, thank you gentlemen. [ applause ] the senate homeland security committee takes a look at potential national security threats wednesday. with fbi director christopher wray and acting homeland security secretary elaine duke. you can watch that live at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. and at the same time va secretary david shulkin
testifies before the senate veterans affairs committee about suicide prevention among veterans. you'll find that live here on c-span 3. a reminder that all our live coverage is available online at c-span.org or free to listen to on the c-span radio app. the c-span bus is traveling across the country on our 50 capitals tour. we recently stopped in harrisburg, pennsylvania, asking folks what's the most important issue in their state. >> my name is larry roper, and i'm from harrisburg. i'm concerned about the libraries. i feel that they are the hubs of small communities, they're resource centers to large cities, and a knowledge base to the state. and i am here to make sure that they are able to get the funding that they need and the keystone grant is not taken away from them.
>> eye sue helm, state legislator for the 104th legislative district here in central pennsylvania. and as i go door to door, the number one issue that people talk to me about he is property tax elimination. they just can't afford to pay those property taxes anymore. however, lately i've been getting a lot of questions, a lot of talk about our opioid crisis in pennsylvania, which is something that we definitely have to correct and look into. and we will do that. we're working on legislation. we're putting more money into it. we plan to solve the problem. >> hello. my name is dana payne. and the most important things to me in the commonwealth of pennsylvania is continued support and increased support in our educational institutions. and that's from early age preschool throughout college and
also support for the arts and museums and libraries. >> the most important issue facing pennsylvania in my opinion is the responsible energy production that is taking place across pennsylvania. not only because of the direct jobs impact we have seen. we have 200,000 people working today in the oil and gas industry in pennsylvania. but if we maximize our opportunity, we remain competitive, we can bring manufacturing back to pennsylvania and brand new industries and help make energy secure. >> voices from the states. on c-span. now a look at the refugee resettlement program here in the u.s. with representatives from the united nations and state department. they discuss assimilation efforts, the vetting process, and potential changes to the program. hosted by the
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