tv C-SPAN Weekend CSPAN October 23, 2010 10:00am-2:00pm EDT
checks which are routinely updated. host: "the new york daily news" has an item regarding the x-ray machines that are going up in jfk airport and a couple of other airports around the country. can i get your quick thoughts on this? guest: these are a vital piece of the security regime. the capability to detect explosives at the checkpoint is the number one threat that must be addressed. the automated in a dream equipment will be a very good tool in order to prevent people from getting the explosives on aircraft that may be headed on their body. host: tom blank, thank you for being part of "washington journal" this morning. tomorrow, michael gordon of "the
new york times" will join us on said. we will also have a roundtable discussion with patricia murphy and vaughn ververs talking about campaign 2010. we will also have a discussion on early voting in the u.s. with a george mason associate professor, michael mcdonald. that is on tomorrow's "washington journal. i want to thank you for being a part of today's program. we will see you tomorrow morning at 7:00 a.m. eastern. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
>> ahead this morning, and look at older voters and the midterm elections. then a few even from the weak on foreign policy. the former u.s. ambassador to iraq ryan crocker and in the saudi ambassador to the u.s. follow the key candidates and races every night. we have archived debates on line and on our politics page, we have twitter feeds and other helpful resources. follow c-span coverage 3 election day. next, a discussion on health care and social security.
cokie roberts moderate the event. it is hosted by retirement living tv. this is one hour. ♪ >> the older voters are always keep an off-year election when there is no presidential candidate running. voters over 50 actually bothered to show up at the polls even when there is nothing or no one particularly sexy on the ballot. 80% of us say we are certain to vote this year. that means incumbents be we are. if this is the year of the angry voter, it is the year of the downright curious older voters. those of us over 55 are telling the pollsters that we want all the people to take charge, preferably people might never held office. compromise is a dirty word. what does that mean for the election? what does it mean for governing? we will ask those questions and try to find some answers in the
[captioning performed by national captioning institute] >> there are few people better able to talk about what is driving voters than my first guest. we have top-flight pollsters. they have worked for political candidates for decades. they know what the candidates are doing and what the voters are thinking. we have seen in another election cycle. the democrats are saying to watch out for the republicans because they will get your social security. >> they tried the attack that republicans are the party of no. that did not work. then came the social security attack. that lasted about 10 days in most places. more recently, it has moved on to jobs being shipped overseas. this is what they call the wave election. >> meaning the whole wave of the opposition party is likely to get elected.
>> correct. the american people are not following closely on the issues. they are just following which side seems to be most rejecting of the status quo. that is the side the going to vote for. >> let's listen. >> i have waited 65 years, 66 years to collect this check. i will not be willing to give up any of my social security to help towards the federal deficit. i do not believe the deficit is a big deal. let the grand kids pick it up. >> that is very unusual. >> he will not be running for office, i can assure you.
>> there is some sympathy for that. we did pay for everything for them now. >> the first view is very common. people do not want to give up social security. most people do not want the grandkids to pay for the deficit. the reality is we do have an election were social security has become an issue. it has become an issue for a practical reason. there are republicans who have said they do not believe social security should exist. there is a republican candidate out there saying it should be abolished. that is a position republicans have not been willing to articulate in recent years. what they are saying informally in their budgets is about privatizing social security. that means cutting social security. that is the official republican position. that is a real issue in terms of cutting security -- social security. we have the republican candidates say they want to abolish social security.
it is coming into focus in this campaign. >> usually, democrats are able to trim social security and medicare when they're talking to talk to senior voters and frighten them off of republicans. this year, republicans are using medicare as their scare tactic. >> i am fortunate. i have retirement and a good health care program involved with that. i think it is a real issue. the health care costs are being escalated so much. they are way out of tune with the cost of living. it is definitely a concern. >> there is the concern of health care costs that drove the health care reform bill. it is certainly not a popular piece of legislation, particularly with this age group. let's listen to that before we come back to you. >> health care is a huge
election issue. i do not see it being repealed. i would like to see parts of it changed. i think the candidate who supports repealing it is probably not going to do well. i do see major changes needed. >> what about that? the health care bill has become an albatross around the necks of democrats. >> people like preventing insurance companies from dropping you. people like the fact that you can keep your kids up to age 26 and your plan. people like the fact that prescription drugs will cost less for seniors. people like small businesses that give employees health care. there is a lot they like. they have been given a sense of the bill that is problematic. more people tend to oppose it than favor it. seniors are concerned about the medicare cuts to pay for the bill. the reality is more complicated.
medicare payments to insurance companies are being cut, not payments to individuals, not the services that seniors get. in his payments to insurance companies. republicans are able to say that democrats cut medicare. it is a problem. >> it is working because it is the truth. if you pay doctors less, do you think they will perform more? if you cut payments to people who determine whether these medicines are provided to people, whether these procedures are done, do you think they will provide them? seniors have now said the status quo is still better than the health care legislation. seniors look at health care and the bureaucracy. they look to the government takeover of health care and they say no thanks.
of all the issues, that one is going to play in nevada. harry reid will have a real problem explaining why he voted for medicare cuts. >> harry reid is the majority leader of the senate. he is running for his life in nevada against the tea party candidate. is health care the big issue there? >> the big issue has been her radicalism. there is the argument that gle is a radical. she thinks it is an invasion of privacy. many of her views maker unacceptable to most people. >> do you think the republicans do have some candidates that will be problematic for the party? to defend sharron angle, the
reason she is tied is because the senate majority leader -- the way he has voted. he has been in washington for a quarter of the century. you would expect people over the age of 50 to vote for experience and a resume. in nevada of all places, it is tied because they're trying to send a message to washington. if they defeat harry reid, that is a message that even barack obama will have to hear. >> that have high unemployment and horrible for closures going on in nevada. >> he lives in the ritz carlton in washington. that is not playing well. >> if republicans have candidates you would have
characterized by of the mainstream, on the democratic side there are voters who do not think you have been liberal enough. let's listen to this boater talking about the health care bill. >> i hope it is not repealed. i hope they put in a single payer system or the other supports that were dead from the program. taken of the program. >> you hear people talking about voting for the green candidate or something like that. they do not think this administration has stood by its principals. >> this is the problem of being in charge. for every action you take, there is a reaction. people do not like what you have done. every action begats opposition. there is opposition on the right. even among people on the left, they say it did not go far enough. i do not think it will be a big problem for democrats. there is a washington leadership
group in liberal organizations that are not happy with the president and congress. i do not think that filters down to voters. >> what about an individual race like arkansas? lincoln is perceived by some democrats as too moderate and by republicans as too liberal. >> it cost her dearly. i bet on election day, over 90% of the democrats in arkansas will vote for blanche lincoln. >> upn november 3, is it going to be the over 50 voters that have decided the election? >> i think so. my greatest fear is that when we wake up, we will not realize what has happened. we will have actually become less civil than we were. we will not know how to talk to
each other. some of the people are being elected specifically to send a message rather than figure out how to work together. i am very frightened. it is not civil now and it will get worse for the reasons frank suggested. the people who symbolize this movement being elected to the people least likely to compromise and to want to work with democrats. they are the least likely to have anything in common with democrats. the level of conflict is likely to increase rather than decrease as a result of the people being sent here. the viewers have said they want people to work together, yet they are sending people who will not. >> washington has not listened. that is what the people we've heard from today are telling
washington, week. >> thank you, frank luntz and mark mellman. that is all we have time for on this segment today. we will pause for a moment. when we come back, we will go out to the battleground states for a firsthand report from the best local reporters. ♪ but florida was traditionally seen as a safe haven for retirees. the financial meltdown and recession have upset and anchored -- angered many floridians, over 30% are over 55. i am joined by joanne read from "the miami herald." she is also a member of the obama presidential campaign.
you are having quite the race for the senate there. the governor is expected to have smooth sailing as the republican nominee. he saw what was about to happen to him with the tea party can , so he is nowe running as an independent. what happened? >> tea party many it took over. a lot of it was based in florida. rick scott on the republican ticket was one of those who started the movement to sort of take over the town halls and protest against health care reform. rubio was smart enough to jump on the tea party bandwagon, although he is distancing himself from it now. it essentially forced crist to make a choice of staying in the race as a republican and losing or going as an independent.
a lot of folks said to give it a shot. this is the one year were almost anything can happen. there is still a chance for him to win. he is very well-known. his folks are gambling on the comfort level that floridians have with him. >> what about the comfort level? you have a huge percentage of voters over 50. are they more interested this year in being comfortable and having someone they know and feel like they can trust? are they more interested in throwing everybody out? >> it is interesting. florida is the opposite of much of what is going on in the country. there is definitely a vibe of throwing the bums out. tallahassee is completely controlled by the republican party. republicans are deeply unpopular. they have had a lot of scandals surrounding the party itself. there is a mixed message being sent to voters.
republicans are exclusively running against barack obama. things like medicare are hugely important in florida. it is one of the next oldest states in that union. pennsylvania and nevada are the only ones that come close. people are deeply concerned about medicare cuts. obamacare is pretty unpopular here. >> medicare advantage is a way of being able to go to your own doctor and still get medicare. you say that obamacare is very unpopular. i think there is some thought among democrats that this would be a group of people that it would appeal to. >> it was a real attempt to make seniors think this was about literally cutting medicare, the program and the elements that go to them. obama administration cut the subsidies that went to insurance companies.
that is not the message that floridians got. we have someone running for governor at the time who was at the leading edge of suing the obama administration. there are now 15 states involved in the lawsuit. some of the claims survived. it is going forward. the idea of suing over obamacare, the idea of opposing the mandate is central to the race. in the attorney general's race, the issue is whether to continue the lawsuit. hishe governor's race, former company was guilty of medicare fraud. we have a race where medicare is important. the health care reform plan is important. there's a mixed message going to voters. it is anyone's guess who it benefits. in the governor's race, the democrats seem to be benefiting because of the opponents ties to
medicare fraud. >> and mixed race with mixed candidates. thank you so much. new york has a long tradition of interest in politics. this year might be more interesting than usual. maggie haverman has been covering empire state politics. she is currently a senior writer for politico.com you have candidates -- a candidate for governor that has been making headlines. >> we do not typically have a phenomenon like this in new york. his views are fairly far to the right. newark is a reliably blue state. he is also doing things that can it is do not typically do like accusing his canada of having extramarital affairs without offering proof. we're talking about a marriage dissolved years ago. he is definitely keeping us
busy. >> in other states, we are seeing candidates who are out of the mainstream and are doing pretty well. it is that kind of year with the voters are angry and what people who have never been in office before who will shake things up. that is not what you are seeing in new york? ? >> the remarks about homosexuality were pretty irreparable. had he not done that, i think his message was resonating in certain corners of the state, especially upstate in western pelladino isre la from. jobs have gone away and never returned. politicians have promised they would create them and have not.
i think he has disqualified himself. >> there are also lot of senior voters in that part of the state are you seeing the senior voters having an impact? >> i think the senior voters are very concerned about what health care reform means in new york state, as they are across the country. seniors are more motivated a lot of town halls that you saw. you saw that last year in the lead it to the health care vote. after the health care vote, it was predominantly seniors trying to understand what would mean for them. they are afraid they will be the most impacted. i think you are seeing seniors poised to play a role they have not in recent cycles. >> who will that work for? >> it depends on the demographics of the district. there are a lot of seniors who remain confused by the health care reform package. they do not feel it has been
adequately addressed. in new york, there is a feeling it has not been properly addressed or explained, especially by politicians who voted for it. the republicans who voted against health care reform are planning to districts where it is not popular. i have to think that having voted for health care reform remains a problem unless you are in an overwhelmingly democrat registered district. >> that says something. we are beginning to look at new york congressional districts turning. it has been a two-party state north of new york. we are beginning to see that changing. the democrats are taking more territory. you are now saying that is not so? >> absolutely. in 2006, democrats won seats.
the receipts that is one operative put it, they have no business winning. republicans are doing their best to make sure they do not hang on to them. the sentiment is that ny-19 is a tossup seat. and they go back to republican. whatever gains were made in 2006, you are seeing an erosion. >> that is where we see that older voters make a difference. let's go west to arizona. issues like immigration and taxes are at the center of the gubernatorial race. we're joined by the managing editor of the "capital times." we have heard a lot about immigration in arizona this year.
the whole nation has taken sides. how is that playing this late in the game in various races around the state? >> immigration has been the big issue in arizona this year. it has dominated the entire election cycle. voters are starting to pay more attention to the economy and health care. up until now, almost every political discussion occurs at the dinner table or anywhere else in the state is centered on immigration. you almost cannot talk politics without talking immigration in arizona. >> what does it mean in terms of senior voters? are they predominately on one side or the other? >> the senior voters are on par with the rest of the voting population in terms of immigration. 65% of arizona voters support the new immigration law.
any measure that would crack down on illegal immigration is one they would support. >> when you talk about senior voters, you are talking about more anglo voters than you are when talking about young voters in states like arizona. given what you have just said, it seems that is likely to work for the republican candidate. >> i think it is. the republan candidates are all using that hopefully in their minds to their advantage. they are using that in every speech they give. immigration has a presence in almost every mailer that goes out. the health care law is also pretty unpopular among arizona voters, more so than it is
nationwide even. there is a lot of frustration that the government has acted to take away their rights to choose their own health care coverage. those issues along with economic issues and frustration with the federal government on the economy, those things are all tied together. they are telling us voters are frustrated. they want change. they are tired of what they've got now. the republican wave we're hearing about nationwide is going to be much bigger here in arizona. it surprised us. >> thank you for bringing us up to date in arizona, matt. harry reid is in the political fight of his life with a newcomer, sharron angle, backed by the tea party movement. i am joined by the political columnist for the "las vegas
soun." this has been the lead campaign of the whole season. it looks like it is going down to the wire. >> it is a dead heat in most polls. you have a very unpopular income that -- incumbent running against the tea party favorite. she has managed to stay close to harry reid despite making a lot of statements that have gotten her into trouble. >> you say that he has been the around since the 1960's. that means the older voters know him quite well. i know there are a lot of new people in nevada. the old timers should know him well. how are they reacting to him this time around? >> i think there is a split. some say he has been around long enough. they have had enough of him or the democratic agenda in
washington. you have the loyal democrats that a lifetime democrats. they will always vote democrat. they will stick with him. they are upset about the tea party. they are upset about sharron angle. it comes down to who actually gets to the polls. >> you have had all kinds of trouble in nevada. for a long time, it was a mecca with 1200 people moving their each week. they are not happy people now. are they going to show up? >> there are a lot of angry people. we are the foreclosure capital of america. we have the highest unemployment rate in america. this is a classic story, especially in southern nevada. las vegas is a boom town that suddenly went bust. the gaming industry is in trouble. a lot of people are out of work
or underemployed. some say the actual unemployment rate is let's face it. harry reid is not the kind of politician who engenders a lot of ecstasy among the faithful. >> not mr. charisma. you also have a large hispanic population and immigration has been an issue that has been both ways. how do you think that is playing in this particular election cycle? >> there are two ways. harry reid needs hispanic turnout to be high. hispanics favor him. sharon favors the arizona law. she has called him "the best friend an illegal alien has ever had a."
that has really hurt her with hispanics and has helped him. the key voting bloc in this race may be the 15% and independent voters in nevada who support the arizona law. they have turned against harry reid in some polls by a two to one margin. >> so if it is our herds to lose at this point. >> that is what it looked like when the primary happened on june 8th. she was ahead 8-11 points in most polls. she is doing a pretty good job of trying to lose it, because now the polls are even. harry reid has been manifestly on popular here. he was given up for dead. he only had one path to victory in trying to destroy her credibility. he has done that. now it is all about the ghost of the polls, the democratic turnout machine versus the
republicans and their enthusiasm. >> thank you very much. our special program will continue in just a moment. >> welcome back to rltv's "crime vote national forums." we have a wonderful panel here. we will make our introductions as we go along. we are mainly here to talk about social security, health care, medicare, issues of concern to all americans, but
particularly voters between 50- 65. a democratic congressman from illinois has been a leader on these issues for quite a few years now. you have been concerned about the fact that social security will not have a cost-of-living increase this year. is there some way you want to address that. >> we will be proposing a to order $50 payment to seniors to make up for the loss. i think what really need to do is look at the law. we did not take into consideration the high cost of health care. i think we should recalculate this when we think about the cost of living adjustment for older americans.
>> we have a republican congressman from his home state of california. he is in sacramento. that question of $250 for a social security recipient, what is your view of that? >> i have heard this from some of my seniors, but the greater concern they have expressed to me is the impending changes in the it manager advantage program. -- in the medicare advantage program. 40% of seniors in my district have enrolled in that program. they see either losing that or the cost of going up significantly far beyond the to order $50. even though the to order $50 proposal is the latest we are hearing out of the majority just before the election, i have heard it from a few of my seniors, but most of what they have been talking about is the
impact of the implementation of the health care bill on medicare vantage. >> i want to come back to that because of a lot of issues are on medicare and medicaid. let's stay on the social security question for just a second. congressman burgess, you were a doctor before you came to congress. you have a lot of people in your growing district. what is their concern about social security? bea >> i have heard of the cost- of-living adjustment issue, but the greater concern was the amount of federal spending and the amount of federal that. when the question comes up about it, it is probably something that needs to be looked that. how do you end up with that calculation of the below their medical expenses are still pretty high? there is a difficulty with letting congress being in charge of so many things. i hear that much more
consistently than setting the rate for what will happen with social security. it is all depended upon the mood of congress. that is a greater concern because they have seen some things happen that are terribly distressing with any health-care bill. is social security next or is this the -- or is this the opening salvo? there is broad recognition that some things do need to change because the level of federal spending cannot be sustained. >> senator sanders is joining us from his home state of vermont. >> it is not accurate to say that congress determines this which is done by d department of labour. as pointed out, the formula used is unfair because it does
not take into consideration the purchasing practices of seniors which primarily are related to health care and prescription drugs which are very different than the rest of the population. i think we need to change how that formula is calculated. secondly, i believe very much, and i presented an amendment in march that the least we can do for seniors, many of whom are hurting very badly is to pass a $250 emergency release -- emergency relief bill this year for disabled veterans and for seniors. the terms of the national debt, which is a very serious problem, we should be mindful that our republican friends want to give $700 billion in tax breaks by extending the bush tax cuts for the top 2%. that of the $70 billion per year. it makes more sense to spend $14 billion to make sure that the
seniors and disabled veterans get at least it to her for the dollar checked. >> the one to bring in tom daschle, former senate majority leader, and you have spent a lot of time on these issues but you can now look at them from the olympian height of a former member of congress. you have really gone through these debates for a long time now. do you see this being difference in any way or do you think we are rehashing the same debate we have had over and over and social security? >> i think we are rehashing a lot of the same arguments. it is understandable, because in many respects, as the panelists have articulated a comment the two fundamental concerns are allowing seniors to make ends meet. my mother is 87 and lives on medicare and social security. she depends of those two
programs extraordinarily. on the other hand, i think people are interested in the long-term future of the programs we have to be concerned about the viability. how we address long-term viability with regards to social security? addressing current needed, meeting long-term demand are the two problems that have to be solved. unfortunately it presents a real dilemma for policymakers today. >> and do you see any prospect of a resolution happening? >> congress has to come to a resolution here. we cannot ignore what will obviously become more problematic challenge for seniors. we have to look at ways in which to make the system more viable. it is a good place to begin. >> the lock box. >> exactly. >> he wanted to comment,
congressman? >> a securities nothing problematic comes to the deficit. if it were not for social security and its $2.40 trillion trust fund, we would really be in a world of trouble with our deficit and debt. to talk about solving the 75- year problem of social security, the $700 billion increase for the top 2%, if we applied that money to social security, 53 million people could make social security solvent for the next 75 years. tax breaks for the top 2% or social security solvent for 75 years? >> i see you having trouble with this, congressman. >> this is the same class warfare we get into. we hear it right before
elections. were herded in the 1980's when they said they made that issue before the campaign and republicans lost about 26 seats. what happened after that? we came into a lame duck session and we adopted the changes on a bipartisan basis. and help but the social security system on a more stable system of that time. to hear that stuff now is really disappointing, particularly two weeks before the election. if this was such a great concern, why was it not brought up before we adjourn? we have to face the fact that social security and medicare our systems we need to review to make sure they do not fall off the cliff. i was in my precinct two days ago and a citizen told me they were concerned about the viability of the systems, but this is what else they told me. they are also concerned about their children and
grandchildren. they do not want to get into this rhetoric. they want to try and deal with the serious problems. they are honest enough to say we need to be fair to our grandchildren as well. coming up with election-year rhetoric every two years makes it more difficult to solve the problem rather than make it easier to solve the problem. everybody knows we have to do this. >> this country has a lot of problems. the middle class is collapsing. poverty is increasing. the gap between the very, very rich and royal else is widening. when i hear about class warfare, it is going on right now. in terms of social security, here is the reality. social security can pay out every benefit bowed to every eligible american for the next
29 years. it has a $2.60 trillion trust fund which will only grow. if you are worried about what happens 29 years from now, if you lifted the caps of the billionaires pay into the system rather than just people ponder $106,000. >> you're talking about raising the cap on the payroll tax? >> yes. go ahead. >> congressman verges? >> the benefits are capped as well. the benefit cap needs to be adjusted if you adjust that level. if this had come up before we left in september, the tax policy of 2001-2003 would have been extended. there were 40 democrats who were
there, five that would have voted with republicans to continue the tax policy. the irs cannot even print the forms they will need in january, so how will people get the refunds when congress had done their work when we left to go home and campaign. this is what drives people crazy about activity with the congress right now. >> and richard daschle, one thing that was pointed out that we have heard before in political campaigns that needs to be different this year is that the democrats are traditionally trying to scare people about social security republicans are trying to scare people about medicare. he thinks they are getting any traction on that? >> i think people are confused because we are hearing conflicting stories and accusations about the viability of the program. the medicare program is the single most popular program in america today. >> of the question about
medicare being cut to pay for obamacare? >> with most republicans, of we are cutting the growth coming out the programs. we are actually reducing the growth from what it was expected to be, and we have all the knowledge that we have a serious problem with regard to cost than health. unless we take some serious efforts to try and find ways to reduce and bend the cost curve, we will not be able to achieve all we have to. we will be spending $35 trillion on health care in the next 10 years alone. $14 trillion will be medicare. we have to find ways to redirect those funds into where can do more good. that is what this bill will do. >> cutting the growth are words we have heard a lot in earlier republican administrations were democrats have said they're cutting the growth. you're concerned about what will happen to medicare to manage.
>> this is a program offered by private insurance companies to offer, instead of medicare, private insurance. the dangers of the energy and commerce committee and said they can provide the same thing that occurred as a 95% of the cost. now, we are subsidizing this medicare advantage plans at 117%. we are subsidizing elderly people for their medicare subsidizing they're these private insurance is. if you can do the same cost as medicare, fine. we are with that. why should american people be subsidizing these private insurance companies at 130%? >> could i address that?
over 40% of my constituents eligible for medicare who have opted in dressy this as a subsidy for insurance companies. they view this as getting a better deal in terms of more comprehensive help for their health care. there are required. it is voluntary. admit that you are not cutting the insurance companies, but your cutting services to those citizens or eligible for medicare and opting in for this program. that is what it does not get across. let's be honest. you were telling these people they will not have those programs. interestingly enough, they will be cut more in my area where we had hmo's and kaiser permanente which is one of the greatest providers.
they have done this at a relatively low cost. if you do it in relation to the services you're giving to the individual. that is the question. you cannot say you will not pay services when in fact you are cutting services. maybe think it is necessary to sustain the system. if so, say so. >> before relieve medicare advantage, the aspect for paying things that are supposed to matter like the care coordination and health information technology, this was part of the reason the subsidy was increased. we should have that debate if we think those things are no longer in fortin than they need to be back out of the system. the most disappointing thing for me is that more people are entering the system.
do people think it will really cost less? there was not even a down payment of fixing this problem. most of the seniors i talked to are concerned about having a doctor when they need one. second, is there a way that their care will be restricted or ration the? they see this as wholesale theft from the program. >> we spend more than twice for capita on health care than any other major country. r a comes are not as good. according to harvard, this year some 45,000 americans will die
because they do not get to a doctor when they should. the goal is to make as much money as they possibly can, any way they can. we are spending every 30 cents of every health care or $1 not on doctors and nurses but on administrative costs and profiteering on the part of the health insurance companies. medicare, it seems to me, is working me. -- is working. we need medicare for all. >> to have looked at the questions of the quality of health care, delivery, and all of that. do we get anywhere near answering any of those questions in this bill? >> we get closer, but we have a long wave to go. we have gone from 11th in life expectancy to 49 to just in the last 25 years.
the world health organization ranked us 27th below coaster brake and above sylvania. we are not -- below coast up rica and above thslovenia. we are not using the dollars we are committing. when it comes to bending the cost curve and making the tough choices, we have to be able to say with all honesty there are those programs that are simply not serving us as well as they should. we have to go after unnecessary care, hospitals, doctors' offices, the insurance industry. there are ways in which to save money. it is not the we are not spending enough. we are spending too much and it is not going to the needs we have today. >> the medicare system is designed to factor in paying any claim coming over the counter. i will not apologize for private
insurance. in the medicare, the expectation is use of the bill and it will get paid. they may tell you later they paid appropriately, but with all the other profiteering, you have to show medical need. you have to call a 1-800 number to get patients into the hospital. medicare has no such system to go through. is simply -- it is simply pay and chase. perspective,'s when you call it 1-800 number, do you think that person knows whether that person should go to the hospital or not? >> it has never been looked at, and we have the wherewithal to do it, we get a lot of grief about the medicare utilization rates which are higher than the average income. no one knows, but i suspect it does not happen, with united or
cigna. those who are insured by medicare and other is my private insurance is, we have a relatively certain set -- circumspect population. we have chosen to look at that. >> we are about out of time. >> let me mention one thing. >> murray quickly. >> if people believe is our health care falls between costa rica and slovenia, i would disagree. if you look at outcomes for heart attacks, heart disease, cancer, we have the best outcomes in the world which has improved year after year after year. the question is how we make sure we have access to that kind of care for all americans?
how what do we make sure the cost curve is brought down? how do we make sure we have more doctors? i would argue that the health care bill does not directly deal with those issues that we can work on on a bipartisan basis rather than overturn our entire system. >> we are out of time. i will let you say a final word, but i would also raise the question of whether it is possible, after this election, to come back and have any kind of bipartisan consensus around any of these issues? >> first, those are not my stats are statistics. those are from the world health organization. you can take them on if you wish, but they made that calculation. i am not sure many people are disputing those statistics. with regards to coming together, i do not think there's any question that unless we come together on social security,
medicare, health care that we will not solve these problems. we can not contain to sustain the polarization we have seen over the last years. it will require finding common ground. i hope to reduce it. >> thank you senator daschle, congressman burgess, congressman lundgren. we will be right back. >> now that we've heard from the experts, it is time to hear from the voters. we have a group of 50 plus voters and it is time to hear what they think. social security, medicare, the
new health-care law, these are all really vital issues and ones that have a lot of us confused. when you hear solutions, though, about having to slow down the growth of medicare, raising the retirement age for social security, does that make you feel like we are coming up with solutions or does it for a new? >> it is all political, like they have all said. it proves that, i do not know who they are talking to, but i do not know what seniors would rather have the deficit paid down rather than getting to and $50 cobra. if someone asked me that question, i would say give me $250, you know? we can pay the debt down later. >> i have a question about the way members of congress speak
for you. "my seniors say." "my seniors think." what is your reaction to that? what was your job? >> health care administration. one thought is we talk about uncompensated care. care has always been compensated because the way it is covered is that those who have insurance have their premiums raised so care has always been paid for. what i see is an attempt to divide it were equally so everyone pays more up front rather than after the fact. that is a concern to me. it is a concern when you ask about social security. i think raising the age is happening automatically. i think your children are beginning to realize they're a retirement will be extended because of the state of the economy. they will have to continue to work longer in order to be where
they want to be said that they can retire. >> said do you fear that? do you fear social security will not be there while you are still alive? >> yes, that is certainly a concern. with less people employed, there is less to pay in. what jan was talking about regarding taking the taxes from the top 2% and funding medicare and maybe other programs makes a lot of sense with unemployment the way it is now. it may not get much better any time soon. >> you had something you wanted to say? >> yes, with the new health-care law, a lot of the uninsured would become ensured. many americans are living longer now and that means we need a lot
more health care providers. where will that come from? will they provide incentives to medical students in schools to provide more medical providers for us? that could be a big problem. right now, it is hard to get an appointment with the doctor. it will get worse unless you have additional providence. >> i think there are issues about providers. we appreciate you being here with us to talk about this. .
>> one of the great features of the library is the ability to clip and share our programs. during this campaign season, that includes more than 100 debates. if you're new to it all, watch how to clip and share right on our website. search find and share with the c-span video library. >> ryan crocker is former u.s. ambassador to iraq and pakistan. he spoke this week at the national council on u.s.-arab relations. success of this conference goes to executive vice president patrick mahon seen no, i second his thoughts. no organization could put something like this on loan.
we have record number of registrants, the highest in the history not just of this organization but we believe any organization. which is a testimony to the importance of the issues and the gravity of them as well as the speakers. we are particularly grateful for the sponsor of this lunch, the new 80 -- uae business council. when many people say arabs are hopelessly this united and cannot get their act together the united arab emirates is a stunning example to prove exactly the opposite. as the confederationhe leaves and practices the words of thomas jefferson, government is
least and government is best and least. you can comment on the confederation or not but it is successful in that when it began in 1971 two people thought it would last six months given the record of some of the attempt that regional integration. in the 39th year of success and counting, the united states had a confederation twice and failed ignominiously in each attempt. one during the articles of the confederacy where did not work with the 13 colonies and another in 1861-1865 with the confederate states of america. the united arab emirates has succeeded where america has not. there is a lesson in this, hopefully one of education, knowledge and understanding and
hopefully humility. weave admiral burns and, the chairman of the board to introduce speaker and investor ryan crocker. >> thank you, john. it is my pleasure to introduce our lunch and keynote speaker, career ambassador ryan crocker. a native of washington state, educated at university college in dublin, ireland, whitman college inashington and later princeton university, he entered the united states foreign service in 1970 to. in subsequent years, unlike the various geographic assignment half of most, his entire diplomatic career was on the middle east and southwest asia.
from 1990 onwards he succeeded in succession as ambassador to lebanon, kuwait and syria. in 2002 as special envoy to the newly formed government in afghanistan, followed in 2004 by assignment as ambassador to pakistan and in 2007 as ambassador to iraq. keenly aware that success in iraq would require the total harmonization of u.s. military and diplomatic efforts, he forged a celebrated bondith general david petraeus, ensuring a coordinated approach that has been lauded for its effectiveness in moving u.s. policy forward. he was awarded the presidential medal of freedom for his
extraordinary service in iraq. ryan crocker left government service in 2009 and early finns year assumed his current position as dean of the bush school of government and public service at texas a&m university. he will take questions after his talk. please join me in welcoming to the podium career ambassador ryan crocker. [applause] >> tnk you very much for that warm introduction, admiral burnson. it reminds me that like a number of others in this room, i have much more of a past than i do a future. i would just like to express my own appreciation to the national
council on u.s. arab relations and dr. john duke anthony for this tremendous program. looking at not just the numbers of participants but the distinction othe participants, i thinreflects very favorably on the weight, the national council holds in focusing on a particular part of the world. thank you for all you have done for america's relations with the arab world. [applause] i am going to talk briefly about iraq. you just had a panel on that but
i was asked to talk about iraq and i will talk about iraq. i am a little daunted in so doing as i look around this room. i refrain from jokes on these occasions, but there is one old joke that is so appropriate have to drag it out. it is the story of the man who survived the johnstone flood. i can hear the groans. the rest of his life he lived off of that. delivering paid lectures about the johnstown flood and how he survived and that saw him through his entire life. eventually he died, ascended to the pearly gates and was informed that it was customary for new arrivals to speak to the heavenly multitudes on any topic
of his or her choice. the man said, well, i think i will talk about the johnstown flood. i riveted audiences throughout america on that subject. and st. peter said you are free to do it but i have to warn you, noaa is in t audience. looking around at an audience full of noaas from the united states and the region. iraq. as we now move past month vii in an effort at government formation, the refrain is in the commentary and the media, why can't they just get their act together? many of you in this room know the answers to that. one of my mantras when i was in
baghdad with general david petraeus is that iraq is hard. it is hard all the time and will go on being hard. that is what we see in is process of government formation. shortly after the elections took place in early march i was interviewed on tv and asked what my prediction was fothe time of government formation. it was march 9th. i said i couldn't be certain but i thought there was a regional chance that a government could be in place by the beginning of ramadan. he was horrified. what i said i was guilty of irrational exuberance and that was highly unlikely to happen.
indeed of course, it hasn't. i do think that in the next month or so the iraqis will put all the pieces in place and most of you as keen observers of the region would also agree this is a total package deal. it is not just who is the prime minister but who is going to occupy every single position, consequence as found to the minister of state environment. that will all have to be hammered out. my predictions for what they are worth is the prime minister will be maliki and he will preside over a broadbased government. i think he is determined not to
try to put together a narrow correlate -- coalition for fear he would be hostage to any single small constituent party, kind of on the israe model, could bring the government down. it has taken a long time. it is going to take a good bit longer. but what i think you will see will be a fairly stable, broad gauged government that will not be vulnerable to the likelihood of a vote of no-confidence. one of the great things about being out of government services is i can stand up in some place like this and say any outrageous thing i want. any have baked opinion or prediction. i am no longer responsible for the consequences of what i say. there were exactly what you paid
me for. what will that government faced? tremendous progress has taken place in iraq over the last couple years, not just in security terms but also politically. when i look at where iraq was when i left in ear 2009 versus where iraq was when i stepped off that helicopter two years prevusly, it was beyond my wildest dreams. yet for all of that progress the challenges in front of iraq by any measure are greater than those it has already faced. what are they? the list goes on and on.
kurdish arab tensions. we have seen sectarian violence diminish, sectarian tensions still persist. in many respects that has given way to ethnic tension. no longer sunni/shia but kurdish arab. that is a complex set of challenges with its roots in a deep divided and bloody history but it is more than that. it is also institutional because aood deal of the tension between baghdad revolves around questions such as what are the rights and prerogatives and responsibilities of a regional government in the north, a federal government in baghdad. provincial governments elsewhere
in the country. it was only during my time as ambassador that somhuge questions were resolved, like could a pvincial governor take command of fedal forces in his province in a state of emergency in communication with baghdad was impossible? parliament passed legislation to say that governors under no circumstances could take command of federal forces and through the length and breadth of iraq disappointed governors had to shelve plans to blow up microwave towers rendering communication with baghdad impossible. so what confronts kurds and arabs and iraqis as a whole, of race at of historical
challenges, political challenges, with roots in the past, manifestations in the present and deep institutional chalnges. these tensions in baghdad, the legal regional forces who comman them and out fit them, t they may or may not do, these are states rights issues. as we heard from john duke anthony, sometimes a little modesty in thinking about inexperience is worthwhile. it took us 13 years from the declaration of independence to the constitution, after an excursion down the dead end of articles of confederation. when we did get our
constitution, we kicked some tough issues down the road like states rights. and that almost literally destroyed this country decades later. just to give you some perspective on that as i was gettinready to deliver another mine numbingly boring fourth of july orati such as ambassadors are inclined to do, in 2008 one of the sharper members of my staff, trying to spice it up said you know what? 2008, if you date the creation of modern iraq to the establishment of the morchy in 1921, modern iraq has been in existence for 87 years. if you date the creation of the
united states of america to july 4th, 1776, you add 87 years is the day after the battle of gettysburg. we didn't manage at all quite right in this great nation. our hope and expect the iraqis will move on faster time lines to better resolve but it is a way that helps mthink about the extraordinary complexities of the challenges of the new iraq faces. ..
the main pilgrimage route to america. you separate the district and gave it to anbar. well, they would like it back. for them these are fighting words. again i am now resident of a great set of texas and i tell texas audiences it would be as of those summoned were to decide north texas really belong to oklahoma. some people think that's a good idea. so these are all out there as are th challenges of economic and social development. as are the issues of the immigration and worn on
integration of the sounds of by iraq. into state structure and security and otherwise, major york times story. is past week giving up on hopes that they will have a full role to play in the iraqi society, members of of the awakening are moving back into the insurgency. you heard this morning about the problem of refugees. an immense challenge, both within iraq with internally displaced and outside iraq's borders. in there are profound questions of civil military relations. the coalition provisional authority was roundly faulted the decision to disband the said
don hussein's on corporate -- on forces in 2003. and, of course, the reality is that army was not disbanded, it disbanded itself. had we wanted a different outcome we would have had to actively reconstitute the armed forces of saddam hussein. history has made up of things thatidn't happen as well as those that did the. arguably had we taken that step we could have had eight shearer revolt rather than in the revolt we faced later periods i was there inhe early days and one day we worked very hard on was not to repeat the experience in britain of the shia revolt in the early twenties. but my point is actually slightly different.
what we are seeing today and iraq is already a significant imbalance between capacity use of the security forces, their organizational abilities and their accomplishments, and those of a civilian authorities. had magic police said dawn's military status of together and not produced a revolt of some fo or another parian that disparity would be even greater and one of the challenges going forward i think will be for the iraqis and given their history to manage the civi military disparity. by the time i left a year ago,
there were already voices in the eye iraqi military saying here we are fighting and dying f our country, while the civilians just mess it up. such sentiments have of an unknown in this country. but the principle of civilian control over the military is very well established. that is not the case at all and iraq. so that is a little bit of the list of the challenges that a new iraqi government is ging to face in my view when that government is formed and all of these issues have been in advance basically for the last year in the run-up to elections and then, of course, there contentious aftermath. what does that mean? doesn't mean iraq is going to go off derails? e doesn't know, i don't thin
so. but when it does suggest to me is that there is a role for the united states going forward and that will be in many respects as critical as the role we have ayed here to four. we remain in iraq in my view the indispensable outside power. we are in the back rooms, n longer in the front. as these tough political issues are wrestled with and i do not think iraqi is broadly speaking are yet in a position where they can tackle these things without substantial outside assistance and that means a sissons from costs. a book was written about iraq prior to the 2003 invasion called republic of fear and if
there is one word that i had to use, i was only allowed one to describe iraq, past and present, that word would be thir. sadaam created the republic of fear where everyone was afraid of someone else, that's how he ruled. those fears persist long after sadaam. where compromise isn't the way to a political deal. compromise can be political weakness that can lead not only to a political downfall, but something rather worse. i think the u.s. role in helping to broker key political compromises as we did during my time is going to be crucial going forward. now, that takes me to wet that
u.s. role is going forward a. we are approaching the last year of our security agreement that was signed in in late 2008 that calls for all u.s. forces to be out of iraq by the end of 2011. there is not a lot of time left on that clock and there are a lot of very immense challenges here here's what i think is going to happen. sometime aft the and iraqi government is formed, late this year early next year, i think that government is going to come to us and say, you know, about that security agreement that that idiot crocker negotiated back in 2008 that calls for u.s. forces to be out by 2011, why don't we rethink back.
i can be sure this will happen but i think it's likely. the iraqis know the challenges there are up against and it was rather telling when we mission ourselves at the end of august, there were to polls conducted. one in the u.s. that found that 70 percent of americans were just completely sick of iraq and i didn't want to hear about it anymore and what it all forces out the sooner the better. the poll in iraq cam up with exactly the same percentage, 70 percent of all iraqis who believe that an early withdrawal of u.s. forces would be a catastrophic mistake. so i think it's quite likely that the iraqi government is going to ask for an extension of our deployed presence. if they do, i hope remind that we will be prepared to respond positively. in because i do believe that for
the next several years going forward in we are the indispensable in guaranteed both for the range of internal challenges that i iraqi's face as well as the external dimension. renegotiated a second agreement, strategic framework agreement that lays out literally the framework for u.s. high iraqi strategic cooperation in every conceivable sphere, so we have a road map for a long-term u.s.-iraqi relationship that would be fundamentally different than the u.s.-iraqi relationship that has ever existed before. and that can make a profound to france i would suggest for this united states, for the west and certainly for the middle east.
to get tir there's considerable lifting yet to be done in. and that is wh i think an extension of time on the u.s. clock for our security presence, not a combat presence, will be important. it's also important again in an extra of the mentioned. the iraqis, as you know, have no combat air power, they have no viable air defense system and they do not have a main battle tanks, they do not have artillery. that, ladies and gentleman, is a rough neighborhood to be under armed in an. the transactions are moving forward now th the administration has finalized its request.
but you are not going to see these systems fielded it until 2013, 14, 15 or thereafter. so not only as an internal anchor, i think as an external security guarantee, the presence of u.s. forces in the iraq and the region is going to be key going forward. finally just a word about that region and since we have summoning distinguished representatives from the region in the room, i'm going to be as brief as possible in hopes that i won't sound as down as possible. i say that ambassador has just arrived. i would like to talk mainly about iraq's two main non arab neighbors. i know you have a panel this
morning on a ron. the point i would make is simply that iran has something that is in short supply in this country and that's what i call strategic patients. they've had a bad couple of years in the iraq. thanks in part to us, thanks mainly to the iraqis themselves to have a bitter bloody history with iran, but the message from the iranians right now is the americans are going home. the process has already started and guess what, we are still going to be here. better reevaluate your priorities because we are going to remember who did what. again i think a reason to have a an american anchor in that critical part of the world. turkey has shown i think a very positive constructive engagement, but with that to be careful of our relationship with turkey. i think we've seen a turning
away from the west as turkey has been disappointed in its quest for european union membership. active engagement in the middle east doesn't necessarily mean estrangement from the west but the u.s. has a key role in ensuring that is not so and i think iraq is an area we can cooperate for italy. two our many arab friends in the region, the message that general petraeus and i had as we made the regional rounds was we know that many of you didn't like 2003, guess what, it's not 200 anymore. and iraq is still a iraq. the kind of iraq that will develop may have a great deal to do with the role that regional arab states play it or don't play. iraq isn't going away, it is how that iraq develops and what role
moderate arab states play in that development will be so crucial. so those are just a few of my thoughts. bottom line, the u.s role has been coming isnd will remain critical in iraq. president obama on the 31st of august spoke of turning the page in iraq. that is fair. our role does need to evolve, but we cannot do as a government or as a people in it united states is a think that in turning the page we are closing the book. because the iraq story is going to go o with us or without us. the quality of that story is going to be a direct function of how active and engaged we are so with that i would be happy to entertain your questions.
[applause] >> unfortunately e.u. we have run at a time. [laughter] no questions. >> i love it when a plan comes together. [laughter] [applause] >> thank you. please join me in thanking a great diplomat. well. please join me in a unwelcome. [applause] >> thank you. thank you for a great introduction. give me more credit than i deserve. to the joint information bureau in the tehran was set up by a
number of officials from the ministry of information as well as the embassy and i personally was one of the junior people in the effort so while i appreciate the premise i certainly don't deserve it. in any case, thank you for the very kind words and allow me to express my appreciation to the national council of for hosting this very important conference. once again, the subject matter of my talk is the ambassadors to from washington. that's a fairly tall order, there are many views in washington and many ambassadors so i will talk about a little of the history of our bilateral relationship, the challees th face, the state of our relationship today, and the steps that the kingdom of saudi arabia has taken and continues to take in order to bring our world closer together. then i would be happy to take questions, hopefully i will have a little more time for you and
my colleague, ambassador crocker. the relationship between our two countries is now in its seventh decade. in the 1930's when you're on repoire of engineers was building the golden gate bridge in san francisco mayor business community bills and 8,000-mile bridge to saudi arabia, the americans came, they discovered oil, they put down routes among us, and they launched what was to be, a very important relationship for both countries as well as the world. the relationship cause a political dimension when the late kanan met with the late president franklin roosevelt on the uss quincy in egypt in 1945 at the end of world war ii. that's cemented in the diplomatic aspects of the relationship and then, of course, the military relationship ban in their early fifties when the u.s. started the its first military training mission to saudi arabia
and over the past seven decades are relationship has seen the coming and ranking have many storms, we have dealt a jointly and effectively in facing the challenges to our respectiv nations as well as to the region, and with every decade and with every experience our relationship has caught up stronger than was before. if you allow me to very quickly go through some of the history of our relationship. because people tend to forget or not put things in their proper context. out in the '50s and '60s when it was not fashionable to be amera's friend saudi arabia was and in the '50s and '60s when the region was consumed by radicalism the kingdom of saudi arabia and the united states were able to confront that radicalism. in iraq they prevailed over it in the 1970's and 80's era when the soviet union was on a
rampage expanding its influence of seeking to expand influence in central asia and the horn of africa, it even in the middle east, it was saudi arabia that was one of the key countries in preventing a soviet takeover of the region. of course, riyal a rumor of the joint effort between the king of of saudi arabia and the united states and the 1980's in support of the move pygidium in afghanistan which led to their defeat of the soviet union, the withdrawal from afghanistan and subsequent to that the collapse the soviet union as a common state. the relationship was again tested and came out with colors when saddam hussein invaded kuwait and the countries put together a coalition of over 32 countries to liberate kuwait
and restore its legimate government. of course, that our next big challenge was the tragic of tax and personal attacks of 9/11. whene discovered that 15 of the 19 hijacke hailed rahm saudi arabia, it was devastating to us, itas a big blow potentially to the relationship. it cast doubts in the minds of americans out saudi arabia. the in unleased a tremendously critical and -- portrayal of saudi arabia ithe united states and the rest of the world. v in the kingdome dealt with this issue. we examine the thread that we faced. we confronted its head on and we came out of this experience, we mning the united states and it saudi arabia, in a much healthier and stronger
relationship then we were before these events. today when i look at our relationshipi'd like to quote as i always do but that doesn't mean that i agree with the political philosophy about ronald reagan, he used to say that facts are stubborn things and wh we look at the facts of the relationship between ou two countries today versus where they were even as recently as 10 years ago, i think the numbers are staggering. today as we speak we have over 30,000 students, saudi students studying at american student colleges and this is an all-time number, we'veever had that many standing in the united states. they will come back and they will, the advocates of the bilateral relationship will be ambassadors for the kingdom of saudi arabia while there are here and they will be ambassadors for the united states when th go back. this is a very important and
strategic step and decision that was made by the custodians of two holy mosques after meeting with president bush improper in 2005. to put the number in perspective, five years ago the number of stitches per -- the number of students didn't exceeded 3,000 so we have 10 times as many students today as we have back then. another example i the travels between our respective countries. the number of leases that the american embassy had been issued in saudi arabia last year, was about 70,000. that is an all-time high number. the number of visas that our embassy and consulates in the united states issued to americans is about 65,000. that also is an all-time high number. when i looked and investment between the two countries they are and record numbers. we are on track to double the
investment that american investments in saudi arabia over 60 years in a matter of five years. if we exclude the investments. i can send in time venture between the chemicals amount to over $20 billion. there is a joint-venture to produce one of the biggest uminum complex is in the world and e value of over $14 billion and the list goes on. so when i look at the numbers and the press, i see a very healthy and robust relationship. when i look to the interaction between our two governments we have worked very hard both of us over the last six or seven years to institutionalize our relationship. to build bridges and directly between derrin agencies of our parents so that they can handle problems and a working level rather than have each problem and grow literally out of
context. we were able to dealith counselor matters that involve thesis and duration, and chd custody cases and were able to deal with commercial issues that commercial disputes between companies, we put th in channels where they can be dealt with and working level rather than turning them into political problems. we have very close cooperation in the field of counter-terrorism and the terror finance. we have programs in terms for a critical infrastructure otection. we have programs foreign-exchange information on identifying radicalism and extremism and ways of dealing with it, i believe in these issues have helped to solidify and a cement a very strong and important relationship. the package that the kingdom of saudi arabia is discussing with the united states is a testament
to the strength of the relationship, the largest package in the history of the two countries and i believe that it reinforces the of the commitment of both nations to the relationship as wells to the security of our region. having said all of this doesn't mean we don't have disagreements. we do. in a number of areas and where we have these digreements we don't shy away from expressing them. we are frank and open with each other. and we believe in honesty as the most important elements in any relationship. honesty and clarity. we made sure that we try our best to make sure that we are very clear and direct with our american friends. on a number of issues and also on the challenges that we believe we need to pay attention to appear in i don't have to remind you that our region is full of challenges whether it is
afghanistan, pakistan, iran, iraq, the situation in lebanon, the peace process, the situation in yemen and somalia. we have to worry about terrorists, pirates, the financial crisis globally that we have a worked closely with our teetwenty partners to over, and, of course, there is the continuing situation involving energy security. ..
madrid that was attentions but all of the major religions and cultures. it culminated in november of 2008 at the meeting at the united nations that brought togethers the representatives of the all of the faith in order to reinforce the common valu handed to us by our creator, and in order to use religion and the values enshrined in all religions to brng them together. irrespective of one's faith, we believe that all faith believe in the principal of compassion, mercy, love, and peace, and taking care of the less fortunate. we don't -- all religions reject violencend extremism and crime. all people of faith share the same values when it comes to what the importance of maintaining the integrity of the
family, the importance of protecting our environment. because if one part of our globe suffers, the rest of the globe suffers with it. and so faith is part of the initiative was a -- to be used as an objective to bring people together rather than divide them. you see it in the universities that the kingdom of saudi arabia has launched with the connecting of the world. i mentioned earlier, we send our students aboard. we established the university for science and technology that is essentially an international university. it's students and faculty hail from over 50 countries. it has cooperative relationships with over 40 of the worlds top academic and institutions. we share research, we share knowledge, we sharetudents. this is another way of
connecting with the world. so to go back to the original headline o title of my talk "an ambassadors view from washington" i believe the relationship is a very healthy one. i think the future of our bilateral relationshipwill continue to grow stronger and deeper and more robust. i have no doubts about this. i believe the ability of our two countries to deal with the challenges that either they both face or that the relationship will inevidently face from time to time is very problematic one, and i think a very solid one. so i'm very optimistic that the future in sham baa will be even better in the past. i hope john i didn't. >> no, we have time.
>> we have time for questions. > yes, we do. >> why don't we stop here. i'll take questions that you have. >> ank you, ryan. [applause] [applause] >> do you want mehere or here? >> here is fine. i'll ask the ones that were submitted here. status report on king abdallah's peace proposal march 31, 2002 in beirut, unanimously endorsed by the 22 arab countries, members of the league of states, where is it and why hasn't it been more positively received by the israelis n one hand, and elements of the united states on the other? >> well, the arab peace initiative which was doctored by the arab summit in beirut remains on the table. it has now become the key
reference point for the settlement of the arab-israeli conflic the -- not only was it adopted unanimously by the 22 arab countries, by all of the members of the arab league, but also by the countries of the organization of islamic conference at the summit in mecca held in december of 2005. not nly would it bring peace with all of the arab countries, but all of the muslim countries have committed themselves to peace. we are puzzled that the israelis have not responded favorably. the peaceinitiative has all of the elements for settlement. land for peace. and talks about the refugees, and peace and all of the normal relations that it entails. d the answer probably ought to be directed to our colleagues in parts of the u.s. government in terms of wh they haven't. but in all fairness to the obama
administration, i believe that from the very beginning president obama has made references to the arab peace initiative and to it's importance. i believe in one of his vry first speeches he commended the peace initiative and saw it as a basis for resolving the conflt. what we need is we need a will to reach a compromise which is the arab worl has displayed. but we don't see on the israeli side. we need flexibility which the arab world has shown but we have not yet seen on the israeli side. in order -- the -- there has to be a strategic decision made that peace is an objective. i believe the arab world has done this by agreeing to the two-state settlement based on the 67 lines. and the end of claims and a
beginning of the state of normal relations. we don't -- we haven't really seen that on the other side. what we see is a f and i believe that the arab peace initiative has defined this objective. and what we need is the will to negotiate towards that objective. and peace making has never been easy. i don't believe it ever will be easy.
and it needs strength and resolve and it needs flexibility. i think in terms of the efforts of the obama administration, there is no doubt in our minds that they have since serial and very diligently tried to move the process forward. but your downside is the other side. >> we have a question about saudi arabia's concerns with iran, iraq, and yemen. you can do all three if you'd like or check the one that's the greatest concern with saudi arabia perhaps to dispell some of the myths of the stereo types that people report about saudi arabia's views, needs, concerns on those three issues. >> all three countries are neighbors of the kingdom of saudi arabia and very important neighbors. our view in terms of iran is that the -- we hope that the iranians will abide by
international law and subject their nuclear program to inspections. we don't deny their right to have peaceful nuclear energy so long as they live up to their obligations to the international protocols that define how you exercise this right. we believe that, more broadly speaking, that all of the middle east ought to be a region free from all types of weapons of mass destruction including nuclear weapons. with regards to iraq, we feel for our iraqi brothers. we feel that iraq is going through a very difficult and very challenging situation. the lack of formation of a government is a matter of concern not om to us but to a lot of other countries. we believe that the iraqis have a constitutional process and the constitutional process specifies how you arrive at the
formation of the government, and we would hope that the iraqis will follow that constitutional process and that they will be able to put together a government expeditiously that represents of all of iraq. iraq will have a challenging future ahead of it, but we have no doubt that the energy of the iraqi people and the resources of the iraqi nation will help them go back to normalsy. norma. with regard to yemen, saudi arabia has very close and very historic ties with yemen. yemen is facing many challenges and deserves our unwaiverring suprt. the yemeni government and al chi baa trying to establish itself in yemen. we must do all that we can to deny them that ability.
yemen faces economic and development problems which we believe the world must come together to support them on. the kingdom of saudi arabia continues to be one the largest supporters in terms of economic systems to our yemeni brothers and we hope that yemen will be able to overcome the economic challenges that it faces and emerge with a more prosperous future. >> yes. thank you. you mentioned saudi arabia strategic objective being stability and security in route to prosperity. saudiarabia has anunemployment problem and a youth bulge problem. they are famous for not employs so many human being but being capital intensive. what can you say about the situation in terms of the youth and the employment situation in saudi arabia, bearing on the
strategic objects of security and stability? we have a whole session later this afternoon because many people are concerned about the youth aspect and the lack of jobs and the need for placing more than 100,000 people who graduate from secondary school in some forms of employment. and if that's not successful, it's a social issue. it could become a political issue. it could become a security and stability issue. >> yes, i think the peace and stability starts at home. if you have a peaceful and stable society, yu can work towards a peaceful and stable country. the future lies with our people. our youth are our most precious natural resource. how we prepare them for the future, the opportunities we give them in terms of educational and in terms of the marketplace are critically important to the well being of saudi arabia in the decades
ahead. it's ironic tat 30 years ago people complained that saudi arabia didn't have enough people. now they argue we have too many people. i see this as a blessing of riches. the kingdom of saudi arabia embarked on temendous economic reforms by opening up it's economy, but revitalizing it's tax systems, but it's investment laws, by joining the world trade worse. what we have seen as a consequence as opening up to the world trade organization, we have seen the acceleration of growth rate. almost e doubling of the rate of growth. when it has become and bee acceleration and in tremendous increase, foreign investment in saudi arabia, we have seen an expansion of the saudi economy to where today it isclose to
$500 billion our gdp. the investment that is are taking place in the kingdom of saudi arabia will generate jobs, and they are generating jobs. the students that are being sent to -- from saudi arabia abroad. we have 100,000 students studying all over the world of whom 30,000 are in the united states and will come back and be equipped to enter the marketplace and become roductive and prosperous citizens. withwith regards to the graduate of secondary school, we have in place vocational training centers in order to teach people trades, and then provide them with loans or grants to open small businesses and join the marketplace. so i believe that the issue of our yoh or the issue of expanding the saudi economy and generating jobs for our citizen is while it is critically important to any government, i
wouldn't make it as dramatic sounding as we here sometimes when outsiders look at kingdom of saudi arabia. >> lat question. focuses on round five years ago there was a consensus that america's and saudi arabia's and the other arab world producers strategic interest was energy security. you don't hear that so much anymore in the united states in comparison to a divorce that in the last two presidential state of the union addresses and this administration the last two in the previous administrion, the president called for ending our curving americas reliance on foreign oil. most people see that a code world for ending reliance on arab and islamic oil and gas. how did we get from the energy security to the divorce issue?
not divorce in driving or transportation, but just not driving or having transportation on arab or islamic oil or gas? and the implications of this for the relationship not just between the united states and saudi arabia, but the united states and other energy producers in the region? >> i think it is the function of the political process in the united states. a lot of things take place, and a lot of things happen, and a lot of things ar said doing what many people in the u.s. called the silly season. we can't take it too seriously. i think the issue of oilis fungible. it doesn't matter where it's produced. it all goes into one theoretial or hypothetical pot. demand for oil takes out of the hypothetical pot and provides the supply. if you have a shortage of oil in one part of the world, it is going to have an impact on the price of gasoline in another part of the world. so whether the united states
imports all of its oil from the middle east or none of its oil from the middle east, it will have no impact on the price of oil or gasoline in the united states should there be a crisis in the middle east or elsewhere. i think the people realize that the world oil supply is a finite resource. you can't make it. once you extract it, is gone. the world cannot rely on oil indefinitely as its major source of energy. and saudi arabia as the largest oil exporter and as the country that has the largest oil reserves. over a quarter of the oil reserves has been at the forefront for the last 30 years of calling for the development of alternative sources of energy. because we know that there will come apoint, it could be 20 years, it could be 50 years, it could be 60 years fromnow were the worlds energy needs or
demands outstrip the ability of oil producing countries to supply it. as the energy ties so to speak, increases because of demand, the additional energy we believe ought to be supplied by alternative sources. and in order for those alternative sources to become economically viable, we have to start now so that in 20 years they make economic sense. we are not afraid of alternative sources replacing oil. quite the contrary with the deed that if you don't -- if you develop al alternatives gradually, you will have a smoother transion away from oil. in 1960, oil replaced coal as the primary source of energy in the world.
and here we are 50 years later, coal production has not decreased from wre it was in 1960. but the energy pie, the energy requirements of the world, have go up. and coals share of that pie has shrunk, but coal production has not. so when people assume that oil producers are against alternative energy, i think that that's a fallacy. it wil not affect us in the long run. it will not take away from our market share in the long run. our ability to produce. but it will make for a more stable transition in the future as the world moves away from the supply. so back to the original question. a lot of things are said during political campigns, a lot of things are said in order to make headlines, a lot of things are
said in order to sensational, and we have learned that we deal with the realities. and we don't deal with the emotions. >> thank you, mr. ambassador. we have many other questions. we'll have those in the afternoon session. >> thank you very much. [applause] >> motors had to the polls in less than two weeks. the of the key races and candidates on the c-span networks. we have archived debates on mind and at our politics candidates's twitter feeds, and other helpful resources. follow the coverage right through election day. our live campaign coverage continues from colorado with a debate between the incumbent and the republican challenger.
this week on "prime minister's questions " call a square off over the british spending revealed. the prime minister also discusses reducing unemployment and maintaining pledges of foreign aid. sunday, at 9:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. following their talks friday, secretary of state hillary clinton and her pakistani counterpart held a news conference. among the topics are the proposed $2 billion aid package for pakistan announced earlier by secretary clinton. this is about half an hour. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] [captioning performed by national captioning institute]
>> good afternoon. it is at the -- i am happy to be with the minister again. we have just wrapped up three days of intensive discussions in our third u.s.-pakistan strategic dialogue. each has been more productive than the last as we deepen our understanding of each other's need and discover new opportunities for cooperation. we have final blueprints from each of our 13 working groups. they lay out specific agreements, actions, and benchmarks for making tangible improvements in the lives of the pakistani people. these include projects in water,
electricity, women's empowerment, health, agriculture, and most urgently, jumptarting the recovery from the catastrophic flood in pakistan. i also want to express on a personal note my deep sorrow and my outrage at the killing of dr. mohammed farooq khan by taliban assassins on october 2. dr. farooq khan was the vice chancellor of islamic university swat, a medical doctor and humanitarian, and a religious leader who spoke out against the evils of suicide bombing. i had the pleasure of his company, and the benefits of his insights during my visit to pakistan and one year ago. i would like to extend my profound sympathies to his
family, his students, and his patients. our government's stand together in denouncing this murder which unfortunately, and tragically, is part of a taliban campaign of attacks against educators, the doctors -- people live are not on the front lines of any war, but indeed are on the front lines of mercy, compassion, and education. it strikes me as not just an assault on someone like him, but on the future of the use of pakistan. to build the kind of future that young pakistani is deserved, people of courage must stand against these extreme and -- extremists. our governments are working with millions of people who
understand the threat that is supposed to eliminate terrorism. as we conclude this third strategic dialogue session, in seven months we can see that our intensive consultations, our frank discussions, and our focus on cooperation has already yielded an improvement in our bilateral relationship. thanks to the hard work of mr. qureshi, and his team of ministers. with u.s. counterparts, we have made strides on a number of projects such as increasing the vaccination rate for children, and saving their lives, researching the solutions to the parsnips contamination of drinking water, improving the quality of we and cotton farms,
insuring the investment of women is an integral part of all of the projects we pursue together because we know elevating the role of women benefits and their families, and persist with their children. those benefits to extend to communities as well. i am also pleased we have continued our emphasis on helping to improve the business climate. i am excited today to announce a new business development program -- the 10,000 women and initiative run by goldman sachs will partner with the state department to bring pakistani women into extensive training on business, leadership skills tough financial management, strategic planning, and operations. the first group will arrive next spring. we hope to give them the support
needed to grow businesses, create more jobs, and invest in their communities. we work on the high priorities of energy and water. we had excellent presentations and reports from our working group on energy and water. we are focused on improving the electricity service, creating more opportunities for water storage -- the kind of a initiatives that were important before the flood, but now are absolutely essential. i am looking forward to working with my counterpart and friend, mr. qureshi, and with this very dedicated team of pakistani and american officials to continue to enhance our corporation and produce results for the people of pakistan. now, let me turn to the minister. >> thank you, madame secretary. thank you for the leadership you
have provided, the understanding, and for the friendship you have extended. working with field has been indeed a wonderful experience. i think, ladies and gentlemen, i would not be exaggerating if i said that collectively we have broken the mold, set the ball rolling, and it will only gained momentum with the passage of time. we are determined to transform this relationship, and we have effectively put together a unique format of engagement. what you saw today, what happened last night, the day before -- visible, indivisible interaction, recognizing the
fact that we could have differences. friends do have differences, but knowing the fact that we have to move ahead in our mutual interest -- this relationship suits the united states as much as it suits pakistan. we are both beneficiaries. the people of the united states have to understand that by investing in pakistan, but the united states is a beneficiary. and the people of pakistan have to understand that having the united states as an enduring partner, pakistan gains internationally and regionally. we have discussed a lot of things as part of the dialogue, and are even beyond the 13 sectors that were discussed. the fact that we agreed to
invite 200 journalists for a training program in the united states because we realized that public diplomacy is so important in democracies, and at times, the message does not get communicated. who will communicate the message? you will communicate the message. we have to understand the message, but we are giving the right message. the message is that we are going to transform this relationship into a people-centric relationship. we are making not a five-year investment, but a generational and investment, and that is what we are talking about. one we are talking about water, we are talking not -- when we are talking about water, we are talking about the improvement of
productivity in washington -- in pakistan. when we talk about social sectors, we are talking about the improvement of life quality in pakistan. we are talking about giving 50% pakistan a voice in which they lacked with when and empowerment. that is how this relationship is taking a new turn. i have also shared with the secretary of state that when i was here in new york, i met pakistani, and they had meetings with attorneys, lawyers, and they shared with me that if there is a natural disaster, there is a provision which in the u.s. law. i had an ambassador -- i had a word with the ambassador.
this could be an opportunity to give many pakistani who are contributing to the american society a legal status. she has been kind enough to agree to examine it. i think that will also improve relations. we have talked about a number of regional initiatives that we feel if put into place can be a game changer. so, thank you for being so supportive and understanding. >> thank you, minister. thank you very much >> you are entitled to two questions. >> i have a question for both of you. mr. qureshi, this morning you have comments about the naysayers and the prophets of doom, as you put it, in washington, who publicly doubt pakistan's commitment to the anti-terror fight. i would like to ask both of you
why you think these attitudes persist, and what both sides could do to turn the perception around? and, madam secretary, if you could give any comment ahead of the wikileaks release this weekend. thank you. >> i think the depth of our relationship, the understanding that we have developed over the last two years should not be judged by a rauscher media reports. -- should not be judged by your media reports. we read them, and we benefit from them, but at the working level, there is a greater understanding. perhaps it is often misunderstood. many felt when i was leaving for washington -- "aha -- it's going to be tough talking." what is tough-talking?
i felt to understand what is tough-talking. there was friendly talking, and concerns, and we share them, and why not? our relationship is often misunderstood with what is reported in the media. [laughter] >> i have nothing to add to that. [laughter] >> i am very pleased by the progress we have made in deepening our understanding. we engage in very comprehensive discussions that go into great depth on a full range of issues. one thing that is not often reported in the -- enough is
that the united states has no stronger partner than pakistan in fighting the mutual threat of extremism. the corporation is very deep, and very broad. but, -- de cooperation is very deep and very broad, but as my friend said, it does not mean we will agree on everything. french it is a two-way street. we have to work hard to maintain this friendship. it is something we are dedicated to doing. it is a generational commitment, as mr. qureshi said. we have two different countries, with different traditions, and different histories. that means we will not agree on everything, but it means that you do not jump to conclusions or presume before you have had a chance to explain.
we laugh often, the minister and i, the intensity of the free press environment in which both of us exist. i am well familiar with the vigor of the pakistani press, and have a lot of experience with the vigor of the i u.s. press. so, we now, and sometimes it is hard to explain, neither of us, and neither of our governments owns our respective prices. when something is printed in either country, people jump to all sorts of conclusions. it is wise to think time to think through the basis of this very important relationship, and how committed we both are to moving forward despite the challenges. i certainly endorse minister qureshi's comments. with respect to your question,
as a matter of policy, the department of state does not comment on allegedly leaked documents. i would refer you to the department of defense for further comments, but i do have a strong opinion that we should condemn in the most clear terms the disclosure of any classified information by individuals and organizations which butch -- which puts the lives of the united states and partner service members and civilians at risk, threatening our national security, and that of those who would we are working -- with we are working. >> hi, how're you. >> before you ask, let me say
the triplets are fine. >> i was about to escape. >> every time i meet you, you always ask that. these talks seem to be successful, but two issues do not seem to have gotten enough attention. one is the nuclear deal with india, and the other is the .oadmap for afghanistan is there a place for pakistan on this road map, and whether these issues discussed? >> i can assure you that all issues have been discussed. it is not just what we talked about here, in washington, for two days. it is what we continue to talk about between our experts and our officials. yes, there was a very long
discussion about afghanistan. both the united states and pakistan have a very important national security interests with respect to afghanistan. we are working together. we are consulting very closely on any road map going forward. >> what we need to understand is that this is a process, and we have begun the process. you cannot expect results in two or three sittings, but the interesting thing is i have often read that the united states has been planting seeds in the pakistani minds. i am trying to plant a few seeds in the u.s. mines for them to look at things in a more innovative whey, trying things in a different way.
things we have tried in the past, they have not worked. that does not mean we give up. i am not giving up. persistent demands success. -- persistence demands success. >> i have a question for both first. i was wondering if you could tell us more about the security assistance package that madame secretary announced today. the united states already gives pakistan a lot of military aid. how will this package make a difference? what sorts of concrete actions will it result in on the ground? and, madam secretary, can you confirm that the united states is planning to withhold aid from units engaged in human rights abuses? >> let me take both of those. this morning, i announced the
multi-tier security assistance commitment to pakistan. that does include a commitment to request two billion dollars in military assistance from our congress for the years 2012 through 2016. that money complements the $7.5 billion commitment in civilian practice that has already been approved. specifically, this commitment includes two billion in foreign military financing, and $29 billion in training and education. we have also made a strong commitment to continue the pakistan counter-insurgency capability fund assistance. based on the ground requirements and the year-to-your needs --
needs.ean this commitment underscores our long-term relationship. we know that pakistan has suffered a lot because of its courageous battle against extremists. i think i heard the figure that in recent times, 30,000 pakistanis have been killed by the taliban extremists. some of those are, of course, military. some of those are police, and many of those are just innocent civilians going about their daily lives. pakistan is such a close partner in the fight against terrorism, and the counter insurgency efforts we know all -- are not
-- are necessary. we want to support pakistan in the fight. to do that, we want to provide the training and equipment they have asked for. all u.s. security assistance must be provided in accordance with u.s. laws and regulations, including what are called the leahy of vetting requirements. we will continue to assure that all assistance will comply with u.s. laws and regulations. we take all allegations of human rights abuses seriously, and we discussed them with the government of pakistan. we follow the law. we work with our partners in pakistan to deal with issues that come to our attention.
>> when we saw this report on human rights, we dealt with it. we dealt with it effectively. an investigation has been ordered by a very senior officers in the pakistan army, and i can assure you there will be zero tolerance for human rights violations, but we have to verify and see what the truth is first. if there is action required, the government of pakistan will take action. we are aware of the amendment. two digit the secretary has just said that pakistan -- two -- the secretary has just said that pakistan is the most important partner, the united states has in counter-terrorism. that partner has lost 7000 lives
in a counter-terrorism, and that partner has been saying we need -- we have capacity and defense needs. i am so happy that this administration has recognized the legitimate defense needs of pakistan. we have had hours of talks and we have reached an understanding that training and equipment is required, and i am sure that along with the multi- year program, pakistan will be able to deliver in a more effective manner. you have seen our delivery in many agencies of the tribal belt, and we intend to do our job seriously. [unintelligible] >> yes, we have met before.
>> the predominant view has been that the project been identified in the strategic dialogue will have additional funding. the view of the american side is that the funding will be diverted for these projects and also for the flood disaster. if that is true, the actual spirit of the legislation will be totally changed. >> i am not sure that i agree with the question. of course, the projects we have already announced from carry- lugar cash berman, where products -- kerry-lugar-berman,
were big projects, that have already been severely effected by the floods. though we gave over $380 million in direct flood assistance in order to assist the people of pakistan to do what we said we would do, it is both flood relief and project. at the same time, it might be that something we prioritized last summer is no longer the highest priority because of the needs of the people. we are in close consultation with the government of pakistan. this money is meant to help the people of pakistan to really create a positive impact through civilian projects, and the list is going to be, i am sure, effected by the floods, but the money is going for the same purposes. >> minister, do you see a friend
of pakistan hear? >> there are many friends of pakistan in the u.s. congress. let me name one. a center named john kerry. i had a meeting with him in september. i think they are cognizant of the fact that the 7.5 package was for pay need, and we now have compounded problems. we need a new look. we understand the difficulties. this is a process. it does not begin with the legislation, and whatnot and with which it will not end -- will not end with kerry-lugar- beramn. i am talking about a generational investment. >> select. >> thank you, you up.
>> pakistan," foreign minister also joined the on avoid 4 afghanistan and pakistan, richard holbrooke. we will begin with comments at the brookings institution. this portion is about >> thank y. mr. minister, thank you for hosting this along with the asia society this evening. two great institutions, one of which i was privileged to be chairman of for six years, and the other zero of which i have been privileged to be abused by for 30 years. [laughter] i am glad to be on the podium with my friend, mahmood qureshi. we will talk about the issues of the southeast asia today.
i especially want to set run all-out to people. -- single out two people. one ambassador who represents pakistan with such grace and skill. and our new ambassador to pakistan with us today, has not yet set foot in country -- in the country but is deeply immersed in the details of everything that is involved in our relationship, who has stayed behind at our request, not going out to pakistan until the end of this week in -- so that he can participate in the strategic dialogue. cameron and i just came back from brussels. today we launched the third high-level meeting between the two countries in the last seven months. all chaired on the american side
by the secretary of state. we call this the strategic dialogue, but ec they were applied to all bilateral relationships with the u.s. in many other countries in the world. with china, with india, with russia, we have one with a bankroll. this is quite different. there is no country in the world which hillary clinton has spent more time or attention today and pakistan since he became secretary. both she and the president's have long experience with the country. as president obama told foreign minister qureshi today when they had an extraordinary 35-minute conservation in the roosevelt room to launch this very important week. i am so delighted, mr. minister, that you felt we start the week of a flying start. we certainly share that view.
the three strategic dialogue is in seven months, the previous administration had won but it was chaired by the tepid terry secretary of state level. that is not such a high title. the president at brookings was deputy secretary of state. i guess they forgot. for hillary to escalate this to the ministerial level was important. for her to do through meetings, spend a lot of time in washington in march, islamabad in july and here in october indicates the importance we attach the relationship. the president's meeting was another example. even as the president was meeting with the pakistani delegation in the roosevelt room today, there were senior and
mid-level meetings going on which i want to discuss with you. i want to help you understand what we are trying to do here. this is not as it was in 2006- 2008. a quick meeting of two foreign ministries. there 13 working groups. four men today. nine of them will meet in the next two days. the water group, the communications group, the agriculture group met at state and the defense group at the pentagon. tomorrow, there will be more meetings. the american leader of the water group under secretary of state for global affairs is with us today. she has done a magnificent job at an issue of the most immense importance, water. i am glad that you have given us a much time on this. these issues, women's
empowerment, communications, the range really matter. the strategic relationship has been re-imagined so it is an ongoing, nonstops set of task forces in all these areas. communication groups raids some important policy decisions which we will rollout later in the week. we are proud of this. when we talk about strategic relationship, we are moving from the transactional relationship which is what we inherited. transactional was something terrible that happens in pakistan and you send over someone in islamabad and say you cannot do this again, or else. sometimes those things happen after the times square bomber. we did send a high-level team to islamabad to discuss the implications for it for u.s.- pakistani relations.
we embed that in the largest strategic relationship across the board. what does all this mean? what is the switch from transactional to strategic? why is it matter so much? why this massive effort in both countries in the face of so much public dispute and a bit about what the relationship was about. let me say first of all we do not do this extensive effort with pakistan because of the war raging on the western border of pakistan. and across the border in afghanistan. we are aware of the connection between the war in afghanistan and the situation in western pakistan. that is important focal point of the discussions we have prater we met with president obama prior to the meeting with mr. hirschey -- minister koreshi.
we do not work with pakistan because of afghanistan. we work on pakistan because of pakistan itself. pakistan's importance to the world, the stability in south asia, one of the most dangerous and explosive parts of the world and an effort to help the pakistani is with a massive set of internal problems in which they legitimately should get the support of many other countries. all of this i would have said before the floods. the floods are simply unimaginable to those of you who have seen it only on television. you have seen floods and television and the world under- reacted. floods were noted hemline. an area larger than italy went under water. it would stretch from the
canadian border to florida. deaths were less than the tsunami in the heady -- haiti. we have come back from brussels. the damaged needs assessment from the world bank and the asian development bank which is replacing what has been lost content billion dollars. that is over the early recovery efforts. i want to stress that in the middle of everything else, pakistan was visited by an epic tragedy. there has been much criticism of how the pakistani responded. i would ask you to bear in mind that over five years ago, in our great nation with our best communications and all our
capability, a much smaller disaster became a huge domestic issue. even to this day, the damage has not yet been fully redone. let's acknowledge the fact pakistan overburdened to begin with, has done as well as it could possibly have done and the leaders of that effort and the emergency effort is with us in this effort. we support pakistan. because of pakistan itself. it matters. it's stability and reemerging democratic institutions which have been under pressure. its ability to do with its internal threats that matter to
us for reasons you understand. it is immensely complicated relations with india which go back to the origins of both countries, 63 years ago. all this matters to us. the foreign minister has mentioned -- [unintelligible] progress shares our concern. aid authorization with the leaders having given us permission to redirect and reprogram money as necessary for flood relief and i would hope in the future would be able to back fill what we divert. for the time being, we're going with pakistan's priorities on the floods and other things. it is an indication of how deeply the congress is united in supporting the civilian iran in
pakistan. we inherited a policy that did not do these things. while i recognize our attention to pakistan has increased press attention and is thus an impression of the situation that you will understand, it is our view that the relationship between the two governments has improved dramatically. my first trip of the 18 i have made to pakistan, the foreign minister and i hata press conference. we have done about 30 of these shows in various capitals around the world by now. in the first one, the foreign minister used a phrase that i have not previously heard. he said our countries suffer from a trust deficit. i am glad to say we no longer talk about that. to be sure, we have differences. pakistani, the view
is not identical to our view. it is inevitable. we have found a way to have extensive dialogue at the strategic level. back it up with practical policies like the $7.50 billion when the floods hit, the u.s. was the first in with the most. it is hard to give a clearer dollar estimate for we have done. direct aid is in the $350 million range but does not count the cost of helicopters we sent over and a shipload of helicopters. nor does it include our percentage of the funds for world food program, usf, and --
unicef, and other agencies. when we leave to mothers -- when we lead, other countries follow. on the larger strategic issues, i am sure we will get into the mine in a minute. we have worked closely with pakistan in regard to the terrorist threat. as the foreign minister and i have said many times, we face a common enemy. a common threat. a common challenge, and a common task. while there is much more that can be done and the press focuses on that, i do not question their right to do so. we believe we have made a great deal of progress. we believe that progress has reduced the threat to our homeland. while not eliminating it. recognize how much more
has to be done, i want to be clear that as we talk about water and energy and women's empowerment and communications and agriculture, we talk intensively and extensively about how to improve or ritual efforts against the terrorist threat which the foreign minister announced a moment ago. thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you. i appreciate the opportunity to be here and value the chance to be here with their renew ambassador. and under secretary otero who is
leading the response. i but i might share comments on the strategic dialogue has meant for our assistance program with respect to pakistan. in full recognition of the fact our assistance program is one part of a much larger and more comprehensive relationship that has been detailed extensively by the foreign minister and ambassador holbrooke. for us with the assistance program, the strategic dialogue has been an effort to reshape the substance of the program and the means by which we provide assistance. substantively, most of the additional resources represented in the extraordinary five year, up multi-year package has been targeted at the request of our counterparts to the productive growth sectors of
the economy in water, infrastructure, agriculture, and energy. the strategic dialogue has been a vehicle for jointly designing programs and projects that the line with pakistani priorities. it has been an opportunity to reassess the history of u.s. assistance in pakistan and learn lessons from those efforts so we can do things differently. it has been an opportunity to work on some of the policy reforms that go along with actual financial assistance in order to boost sustainability and outcomes. the dialogue has been a way to change the way we provide the assistance. instead of building parallel systems through independent projects and programs, we're making every effort to direct more resources to local institutions in pakistan and where appropriate through the pakistani government itself. we estimate nearly 50% to
assistance will be provided in direct assistance mechanisms which is up more than fivefold from three years ago. the recent floods have been a dramatic entrances -- transition for country there was making decisions to expenditure revenue base and take on some of the reforms that are required on the fiscal side to maintain the imf program and improve its fiscal situation. the floods have affected more than 20 million people. perhaps a million or 9 million of which are in dire circumstances. 65% of the crop remains dependent on agriculture. the reason $9.70 billion world
bank and asian development bank damage its assessment is an assessment of what would take to rebuild existing infrastructure as opposed to building back to higher and better standards. the u.s. government provided more than $400 million in assistance. when you include in kind assistance as well as additional resources provided through our various assistance mechanisms. well those dollars are assessed -- are needed, they do achieve results. pakistan is directing the response to the floods. the general has done an outstanding job in leading and directing assistance especially from the u.s. but from other international partners to those parts of the country and those
sectors that are most affected. we believe u.s. generosity has resulted in real impact for the pakistani people. our food assistance has fed million. food thatd khmeall the will enable a speedy recovery. our efforts to provide clean drinking water of which we provided more than 30 million liters have focused on those populations most at risk for waterborne illness. through efforts have avoided major up blix of a cholera or underwater or an illness.
[unintelligible] our efforts to purchase through the response whether it is plastic sheeting for tents and tarps or basic food commodities itself will hopefully lay the groundwork for reinvestment in the pakistani economy. as we move forward, we are in the intense dialogue to understand how to best shaped the assistance package to support the immediate recovery needs for pakistan. for one specific example, we have been able to provide $21 million in additional assistance over and above the spending envelopes to provide resources to allow the government of pakistan to expand its poorly designed seed and fertilizer distribution programs in the can help farmers plan for the growing season which is critical to helping these communities
recover as quickly as possible. as we look to the future, real challenges persist. the world health organization estimates 420,000 children under 5 are at acute risk of serious malnutrition. that will make them more susceptible to disease, a state of chronic hunger will affect them throughout their lifetimes. these are the types of things that undermined the type of stability and prosperity that is in the interest of both countries. we're committed to a broad based partnership. we look forward to this strategic dialogue and helping us reshape the way we have an assistance relationship as part of a larger program. now is the critical time. the government has taken some actions to meet the imf stabilization program needs to
improve their fiscal standing and move forward on issues like tax reform. those are important steps. the u.s. has reshaped its program to be supportive and we continue to work with richard's tireless efforts to get the world to realize now is a crucial moment for the future of pakistan and we're eager to be as supportive as possible. thank you. [applause] >> i am uncertain about our plans for amplification from the stage. a mile right? -- am i all right? while they are being miked, do it from the chair. >> ok. >> i may start at the third th30
foot level. you talked candidly about history and has left some in a pakistani is disappointed in the u.s. and uncertain about the decisions of their government to pursue this alliance. you mentioned the price pakistan has played -- paid in lost opportunities over the last few years. when he spoke, ambassador holbrooke tried to make clear why the u.s. was willing to invest the time and take the risk to develop a durable, strategic partnership. how would you describe why it is in the interest of pakistan to continue to take the risks and pay the price is paying to develop this terrible strategic partnership. why is it in your interests?
>> it is because we have a number of shared values. democracy. this administration is a strong advocate of a statement of your kasay. it is clear that they want to see a stable civilian government. this government has a very clear strategy on how to deal with matters of terrorism. the government of pakistan has come to the conclusion that averting extremism and combatting terrorism is in their interest. this government feels the u.s.
can be an important -- can play an important role in favor of pakistan to help us achieve economic stability. they have contributed. one significant demonstration of that was the help we have received during the flood. the fearlessness with which this administration is engaging with pakistan is clearly demonstrated. this is the third sitting where have had in seven months. that is a level of commitment. it is shown -- through the paper they have shared with this illustration. on issues that affect the quality of life. you're talking about how to improve living standards. how to address issues of public
-- poverty alleviation. how to have -- achieve stability. it is a common recognition that pakistan and the u.s. can become very useful partners in the attainment of regional stability. there are a number of shared objectives and do pakistani is want stabilization -- [unintelligible] >> you mentioned the commitment pakistan has made to eliminating terrorism within the country. ambassador holbrooke spoke on the issue and i thought i heard him say more must be done. is it your sense that the state is doing all it can do?
if so and more must be done, where do we go from here? what is the deficit? >> when we say more must be done, it is not just the u.s. telling pakistan. it is pakistan telling the u.s. as well. a share objective, a common goals. we have to make an effort. you have to make an effort for the gold. today, in this satisfying engagement with the president my delegation had, a number of tangibles will come out. they deliver bulls were the president's commitment to pakistan's economic growth. pakistan's economic stability. a firm commitment to re
dispensation of funds. -- commitment to a dispensation of funds. the factory has decided to invite the president of pakistan to the u.s., that is the level of engagement. there are concerns. obviously, their concerns. it is his job and responsibility to ensure the safety of american citizens and i quite understand that. as a representative of the people of pakistan, it -- it is my responsibility and the president's responsibility and the government's responsibility to ensure safety of citizens in pakistan and many have lost their lives. 30,000 civilians have lost their lives. we have a shared objective.
our interests are converging. this convergence tells both sides to do more. >> it has been awhile since i was in the business, but you have made news. ambassador holbrooke, you constructed your vision of the strategic dialogue. long before the floods. it sounded as though the floods had forced to 2 changeup you're thinking about how to approach american investment in pakistan. if that is right, how so? >> that is correct. of course. i do want to -- before i get specific to say how enormously pleased we are that the president has invited president
zebari to visit. he was here in may last year in the trilateral context with president karzai. this will be for him and not for other leaders. the president will go to pakistan next year, date to be determined. your right. we have the strategic concept. we understood when we took office we did not -- we inherited their relationship and we were unhappy with that. we started by reorganizing. my very job to work on both countries while recognizing that they are sovereign countries with their own culture, economic development, politics was a recognition of the fact what would happen in each country was
affected by the other. this was not the way it works. general lute was at that time in charge of iraq and afghanistan, a two countries that had nothing linking them accept work in -- at war in both. pakistan and india were handled by someone else in the nsc, same in the state department. throughout the u.s. government and over the world. because of our organizational focus on pakistan in its own right, we inherited a situation with almost no economic aid. we inherited a situation where a bubbly important relationship to both countries had atrophied overtime through a series of events, some lamentable
greatest flood in modern history. a tragedy so huge that the secretary of the nine jason's ban and the consequences that enroll in western pakistan and led to the taliban take over and then 9/11, which you have chronicled in your masterpiece. the situation had to be changed. we developed strategic dialogue. mr. koreshi was center. it was his suggestion we have a trilateral meetings. we had to last year and we have had none this year because of the calendar. i can say now we can debate if you want to move forward that we have discussing with kabul and islamabad a resumption of the
trilateral process because there was such that you in it. two ministers of agriculture in afghanistan and pakistan were in the miniowa and they worked on, agricultural programs. that will continue. all of this was developing. i think we were doing a good job of overcoming a lamentable and complicated legacy filled with problems. when the floods hit. pakistan had 6.3% of growth in the two preceding years. pakistan was moving forward. it is unimaginable and we do not know the economic consequences of this tragedy. of course, we reoriented everything. one of the most moving experiences i have had was going minister's home town where
his ancestors are leaders of sufi islam. it was very moving and saying the desperate struggle for the recovery phase. raj made a point. dikes and living on you could not get to them. helicopters did not -- were not able to land. the are made diverted 70,000 troops to taking care of these people. we visited early and saw what an immensely difficult effort it was. the waters started to recede.
the press started to turn its back. the minute the waters receded, people rushed, but there were no homes left. millions were gone. the livestock was drowned. the crops, millions of hectares had been destroyed and were beginning to get estimates from satellites. the roads were gone. every bridge -- there was $1 billion worth of aid after that crisis. all washed away. raj mentioned something. in the early recovery phase, the people rushed back to their land and they were in areas of stagnant water. kids under 5 would die of dysentery fast as we do not deal with it. our teams are out there working hard under difficult conditions. other countries are there. we have to look forward to the recovery phase and what i mentioned about john kerry is
important here. instead of having to go to congress for money which, given the electoral cycle when out of session, money would not be available for a while. we're looking to the pakistani government to tell us what the priorities are. we will meet their prioritization. will be in islamabad in less than a month. in the meantime, we will meet their priorities and then we will see how much we have diverted and sit down with the congress and see where we go from there. >> all three of you talked about in the recovery phase strategies for economic growth. mr. koreshi emphasized his country's trade.
when you take note of -- think whatt economic strategies an, is possible by way of trade and open border reforms in south asia as a region and between pakistan and the u.s. and between pakistan and other partners that can be a focus of american support for pakistan's recovery? >> is important to note that the pakistani government has offered a detailed vision of what is possible on the economic growth frontier. it is a vision that is characterized by a significant investment and an energy infrastructure that will allow for productivity and economic development. it captures the potential
strategic and comparative advantage pakistan has. high value of agricultural exportation and processed goods, including textiles, which is a major source of export and foreign currency earnings. those are the sectors that pakistan was seeking to invest in and invigorate as part of a serious growth strategy. the trade agreement that investor holbrooke and leadership and the afghan leadership put in place is an incredible step forward. it is one example of how pakistan can benefit from expanding its trade relationships in the region. recent news at of the eu of potential trade preferences will create similar economic activities. what is tragic as these floods occurred in that corporate
active -- the flood plain. the agricultural part of the economy at a time when that was the core growth strategy. we do have to look at what can be done on the trade side, on the preferences side and with respect to the opportunities to enable growth in an environment where there was a coherent plan, there was a strategy that prioritize the assets of the people and economy and productive base and the floods that have heightened the stakes dramatically. >> raj mentioned the transit trade agreement. some do not know what is and others think it is just a trade agreement. let me underscore something. it is an agreement of trade between pakistan and afghanistan. it is much more than that. it is the most important agreement and at least 50 years
and probably since pakistan became independent in 1947. people forget that the current relation is -- was not born on 9/11 but in 1989 when pakistan became independent. on august 14, 1947, it applied for u.n. membership. the only country to vote against the membership was afghanistan under the king. the reason they did it was because of the pashtuns and the question of who the loyalty was towards. the issues that exist have always been a problem. in this context, the existing trade agreement, which was negotiated in 1965 between pakistan, afghanistan, and india had never been carried out. when the president's came to
washington in may of last year, president obama asked them if they would commit to negotiating a trade-transit agreement which did not include india. because we knew that if india was included, there would never be an agreement. 44 years of attempting to renegotiate it had resulted in the zero. the indians said they would go along with that provided that if in the future if they came into and afghanistan which would be in the national treatment clause. after a netense negotiation, we finished it at july 19. the minister and his colleagues and some of the rest of us were opaleye working on it as hillary's plane descended.
bin raithel spent sleepless nights working on it. i read in the paper is a lot that there is no strategy. there is a clear strategy but it is not always easy. one of the core goals is to reduce the long-term problems between kabul and islam a bad which preceded by works and shredded by the events since 1978. that is 32 years of nonstop war for afghanistan which is increasingly embroiled. until the countries have a strategic understanding of the common purpose, there is no hope for ending the problems which plague the region and are
tearing afghanistan to the breaking point. it has required us to send so many troops and resources there. the trade transit agreement is much more than a trade agreement. >> you have to realize there's a new realization in pakistan and afghanistan. with our neighbors and we will continue to be neighbors. to coexist. we need each other. we can help each other. we have -- we contribute to each other stability. this change of heart has led to a new understanding. i think the bilateral relations
between afghanistan and pakistan have qualitatively improved the last two years. not just -- the trade agreement is one manifestation of that. we have put in place and architecture for the future that goes beyond the vision. how pakistan can get into [unintelligible] and how they can be useful. there is a new realization of interdependence, of trust and confidence. these engagements are beginning
to show. >> that [unintelligible] pakistan wants a good neighborly relationship with india. we have outside issues. both sides have agreed that dialogue is the only sensible way forward. we have in place a mechanism. the dialogue has shown results and progress has been achieved. we need to pursue that. why not? it makes a lot sense if we improve relations, and pakistan stands to gain and the region stands to gain. >> questions from the audience.
could you please wait for the microphone? >> i am more interested in the delhi-islamabad dialogue. the one has talked about the bomb. what are we doing about the dialogue on the bomb? >> one thing we're certain, both rely -- we do not need -- relies we do not need to use it. >> i wonder if you would elaborate. you said aid is doing something different. could you elaborate? >> the two most substantive characteristics are the level of consultation that occurs and
finds its way to where projects are designed and implemented. a few years ago it would be difficult for the minister or the minister of finance to describe what the assistance program look like. today there is a near complete alignment of what we're doing. that plays out as well in the context of the discussion of specific reforms and policies that can allow assistance to be more effective and generate better results. the second characteristic is a focus on trying to invest in local institutions and capacity. including direct assistance. we have a statutory requirement and we are fully committed to doing this in a way that tracks our resources and allows us to take in account -- an account of
how our money is spent. the fact we can do that with so many parts of the pakistani government is a testament to the fact there are parts of the government that operate effectively and as a counterpoint to the larger narrative that sometimes makes the case seemed the opposite is true. >> there is a back story on this. the -- when we started looking carefully at pakistan last year, the pakistani is a bold political party said the same thing. you do not consult this on your aid programs. we do not see them. we have looked into this. and the criticism was absolutely right. keys is one of robin's
responsibilities. we tried to listen. there is still a lot of complaining. because of long time lags in between the time we make a commitment and the time we get the obligation authority and raj has 14 hoops to jump through. but we are listening. the second thing is hilary and i and raj concluded on the advice of the government and opposition that we ought to return to big visible projects. everybody remembers the kennedy and johnson administration. that as long time ago. you remember that because you were the best book ever written on u.s.-pakistan relationships. my bible. from 1946-2000. if you want to understand this relationship, reid dennis's
book. s's book.enni's water and electricity energy is where we put the focus. we have tried to listen. we still get complaints, but at least we are communicating. >> next question. a question for the foreign minister. clearly, this dramatic increase in aid is important. for pakistan and the u.s. but there have been reports that came out recently about the degree to which the pakistani elite and the wealthy are not contributing with tax money to
the pakistani government. this is going to be concerning to american citizens who are footing the bill. what steps are going to be put in place or in place to ensure that pakistani elites have a stake in the future of the country and their government? >> to begin with, these issues that are being talked about are not reason. there are chronic issues we're dealing with. consistent government over the years, decades have not spent substance of time in broadening the tax base. there is a growing realization if you need development, if we need growth, we need an effort
of successful mobilization. we need to broaden the base are bringing in more sectors that have not been taxed in the past. and to seriously document the economy. i do not say this today. i am on record having said it in 1994, 1995, there is a sector of the economy, a 24% or 25% of gdp which should be broad in. who should be taxed? the more affluent and not the subsistence farmer. there is thinking on that score. we're talking of a new reformed gst and there has been debate and a new constitutional arrangement. there is a new formula of
[unintelligible] between the federation and the federated units. today, in democracy, people are talking about it. people are writing about it. people are debating and that is what is helping. we will overcome this problem. >> what is the strategy for terrorism and is there an end in sight? >> yes, because failure is not an option. we will achieved our objective and we will deflate them and
reverse their trend. do we have a strategy? we do. strategy, about? we came about it through a debate. dialogue, and development. however put it to use? we have. proof of that is many adjoining several districts in the province. that has worked in the travel area. the clear, cold, and build. you see results in the days to come. >> as we near our elections in
two weeks, the majority of my fellow citizens are very happy that the u.s. is supporting pakistan and is able to be of great assistance during this time. at the same time, americans are conflicted and confused by what they see as a rather split personality on behalf of the pakistani government insofar as the area called pa shtunistan. people are confused about pakistan's relationship with them, the relationship of the isi through the taliban. >> there is no split personality. if that is the case, i think you
need to do a better job with your public diplomacy. pakistan is clear what our focus is and what our objectives are. the role that the isi has played is known. there is a conversion in public opinion and perhaps that has not been fully appreciated in the u.s. line > >> the recent aid branding controversy gets at the question of goals. we do not have to choose between bolstering the u.s. brand and our relationships and saving lives and livelihood in most places of the world. both are in the u.s. national interest. some parts of pakistan present a
rare exception in which the choice is required. what is best for long-term u.s. interests and the interests in pakistan? steady and quiet support for relief and development that instability over the long term or more limited but more explicit support that provides potentially a from wrote gains in popularity? how does investment in evidence based analysis factor into the strategic trade off? >> you are asking about putting usa on the delivery of goods, just for the translation for the audience. >> i think this is an important and serious issue and not one that has an easy answer. i will say from my first visit
and i have had three or four visits this year, in my first visit, i spent a lot of time asking questions about -- from political leaders and humanitarian assistance workers and development program partners and our teams all over the country. the one consistent thing i heard was the pakistani people value seeing the handshake that used to represent our relationship. it sends a message that we're not just -- that we care. we are there. that we're listening. so long as we abide by those characteristics and put them in practice, it makes the relationship stronger and almost more important from the perspective of an aide to makesistration, it mad
assistance more effective. this indicates about how we have approached our response in the flood. we have a consistent approach to how u.s. assistance is labeled and identified around the world. our goal is to be transparent, visible, and supportive. that is not the reason we do the assistance. we do it because we care and we have a humanitarian priority and we are the first with the most support in pakistan and disasters around the world for decades. where there is an actual trade off, if it is real, and if it is meaningful, it put at risk the lives of the brave humanitarian assistance workers that are out there trying to save children and held mother deliver kids in a safe environment, we do offer exceptions to that general policy. we have been doing that
consistently in certain parts of pakistan where that is relevant. we have had that same policy in place through this effort. the controversy is a little overblown. the more important message is as the strategic dialogue demonstrates -- at all levels, visible, continual listening and partnership is genuinely valued on both sides. it makes the assistance more effective overtime. >> you mentioned american public diplomacy's deficits. why is american diplomacy ineffective in your judgment, it is? >> i think this administration is making a serious effort in improving that. they have taken certain measures to do that. i think your people were not
perhaps dealing with a democratic government before. the media in the last four or five years in pakistan has undergone a significant change. it is a much more open society. people are talking more. people are being more objective. people are being more critical. people are holding institutions and individuals more accountable. the approaches change. i think greater effort has to be put in on your side to engage with all those institutions that were perhaps not required in the past. have a vibrant civil society and an independent media.
clinton has engaged and communicated and engaged. she has met members of civil society. she has met ngos, students. i went to an important event in lahore when there was a misinterpretation of [unintelligible] students from all over the country assembled and they ask searching questions. the way she engaged with them was what is required. >> this is an important issue for us. we recognize the validity of what is behind your
groups. at the town hall meetings. this time around, nobody was worried about. they wanted to know how their towns and villages could get some of the money. so, this is a work in progress. if you look at the public opinion polls, pro-american sentiment has gone up. we have work to do. we are going to keep doing it. i could not agree more with the prime minister and his critique of this issue >> we would like to ask you to remain seated for a few minutes.
the color of senate debate -- the colorado senate debate. coverage begins tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> during this campaign season, more than 100 debates have been aired on c-span. if you are new to it all, watched the editorial on our website. search, find, and share with the c-span video library. >> earlier today, the today wikileaks released over 400,000 military documents on the iraq war. its members held a news conference in london to talk about their findings.
this is about an hour and 15 minutes. >> these releases are based on 400,000 classified documents that were received by wikileaks. the those speaking this morning by the editor of wikileaks, julian assange. wikileaks has won a number of awards. in june 2009, wikileaks and julian assange won amnesty international's award as well as the sam adams award for integrity. chris who has 20
years of experience with channel 2 news and the icelandic public state broadcaster. after wikileaks on the panel, john has been an ongoing -- has headed the project updating the largest private database. he is a consultant and director and shares the international advisory group. he is a professor of psychology and an honorary professor at the school of politics and international relations in
london. the body count the data has been used by an extraordinary group of people. and, at 10:25, we will be hearing from phil schreiner. he has been practicing as a solicitor in the u.k. since 1981 and has written extensively, on human rights law. in recent years, he has acted on some of the most important judicial review cases in his area of expertise. in march 2010, he led the team to success in a particularly important case. he was made is solicitor of the year in 2008 and was in the
sunday times top 10 solicitors in the same year. i think we can now start. >> thank you, kevin. i will not speak for long. this disclosure is about the truth. the great investigative reporter, an australian who for the past 30 or 40 years has made the u.k. his home, says that the casualty of war is the truth. the attacks on the truth by war begins long before war starts and continues long after a war ends. in light of these 400,000 documents about the iraq war,
the intimate details of that war from the u.s. perspective, we hope to correct some of that attack on the troops that occurred before the war, during the war, and which has continued on since the war officially concluded. in that material, the deaths of some 109,000 people are documented. internally declared, 66,000 civilians. working with the iraq body counts, we have seen there are approximately 15,000 never previously documented or known cases of civilians who have been killed by violence in iraq.
that tremendous scale should not make us blind to the small human scale that occurs in this material. in fact, it is the deaths of one and two people that kills the overwhelming number of people in iraq. following our release of the afghan war diaries, we thought we would try to pull together than a broader coalition not just involving -- one that has the emotionality and impact of tv journalism and extern our research from public groups. we structured a collaboration between the guardian, the new york times, our three previous partners, and new groups, the
bureau of investigative journalism, the iraq body count, whose knowledge of deaths in iraq is unsurpassed, swedish television, channel 4, bbc radio, and i am sure i have missed others. that cooperation has seemed to have worked. we will see over the next few days what it is to be made of it. so far, we can see a fairly strong response. we have seen as of 3:00 a.m. this morning 1500 articles according to google news and reports all around the world.
we make a promise to our sources, who go through incredible risks sometimes to get us material, that we will do justice to their efforts and get them the maximum political impact possible. while i am not sure that we have achieved the maximum possible, i think we are getting pretty close. with that, i will introduce you now to chris. >> thank you. when wikileaks announced the release on july 26, the organization was condemned about the material that was described as sensitive and harmful to troops in the country. those over blown statements [unintelligible] three months have passed now and
there have been no reports of any harm. this has even been acknowledged by the pentagon. this was about the same time that robert gates was sending out strongly worded statements to wikileaks. the afghan documents had not released any sensitive sources or methods. last week, a top nato official reiterated in a statement to the press that he had not seen any harm of the result of the release.
these statements should be a reminder that people should not condemn statements against wikileaks without question. [unintelligible] that work is now finished, and the reports will be released soon. this time, wikileaks took a new approach to the process. combined with test done by groups of people, it is an innovative approach that has been perfected by a group of people contributing to the process. it can best be described as a reverse process of production.
from there on, words, races, locations, etc., were uncovered step by step. the work and the passing weeks has therefore been focusing on minimizing the reductions. along the way, batches of documents were taken out and tested by a group of qualified volunteers and further tests were done on the 390,000 documents. we are confident now that the documents in the highly redacted form contained no information that could be harmful to individuals. having said that, the likelihood of any flaw in our approach is minimal. the end result which we are presenting is still in highly
protected classified documents. it is easily readable. we will also look into the possibility of providing news media and academics part of the documents upon request. furthermore, in this to be emphasized that we aim to continue on the track of further minimizing reductions, but being a small organization with limited resources, this could take some time. >> thanks, kristin. you will see on wikileaks the instances kristen spoke of.
you can search for key words like oga and other government agencies. we also partnered with [unintelligible] to produce a system where when people have information about the offense, they can comment on them and write them. go to the website and have a look at that. there is a lot of -- obviously, there is a tremendous worldwide interest at the moment, but if you persevere, you will find them to be quite usable. it is what we use partially internally, and the iraq body count also has a system which they will describe it. >> in any given disaster, finding out who dies and how
they died is the overriding public concern. seven years on the public does not have a full account of the terrible human cost of this ongoing iraq or to the american people. what we have instead is an incomplete patchwork, stories, pictures, and data classified by different organizations often published one day and forgotten the next. the victims of this war, their families, and the public's whose taxes funded this or deserve better than this. there is a public right to know. the iraq body count has been working on a daily basis since march 2003 to ensure that no fact about a civilian death uncovered has been lost from view. it will carefully monitor, compared, and analyze published reports. in this way, we have been able to build and keep in the public by the most detailed and comprehensive list of civilian
deaths. the world's press and media has been on the front line as dative gatherers for this war. without journalists and organizations for which their work, the world would know little of substance about the iraq death toll. but yesterday's release revealed that there has been another front-line data gatherer -- the u.s. army. day-by-day, secretly, soldiers all over iraq have been riding the to reports about the violent deaths they caused, witness, or are informed about. dates, times, precise locations, names, ages, and occupations of the victims have all been stored away in these logs. it is very good that this data has been collected, but it is wrong and unjustifiable that it has been kept secret for so long. integratedody count
the information into the new patchwork just as we would with any other source brought to our attention. we have only scratched the surface. matching these logs to what is already in our database, we have a clear and the emerging picture, and our reports on our website give the full details. let me take you to the headline findings. i and my colleagues will be available to answer further detailed questions during and after this press conference. based on our assumption, when fully analyzed, these lots will bring to the public knowledge more than 15,000 previously unrecorded civilian deaths to add it to the 107,000 that are already in the database. 15,000 is a huge number, equivalent to five 9/11's. however, the