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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  November 20, 2013 9:00pm-11:01pm EST

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[captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] [captioning performed by national captioning institute]
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>> president obama spoke about president kennedy's legacy wednesday evening and a dinner honoring the middle of freedom recipients. >> thank you for that wonderful introduction. i want to thank president obama and mrs. obama for inviting me here tonight. and for all of you for being here with us. i want to thank my family members who came. it would have been my great uncle robert kennedy's birthday today. and while we are on the subject
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of birthdays, you are all invited to my 21st. 1960 three, my grandfather, president john f. kennedy, formally established the annual presentation of the presidential medal of freedom. madeing persons "who have exceptionally meritorious contributions to the security and national interests of the united states, to world peace, crotch role, or other significant doublet or private endeavors." my grandfather, a veteran of world war ii, a u.s. congressman and senator and president, use the avenue of public service to make his kind basins to this country, this planet, and all men. he recognized his path was but one of many and that service can and does manifest itself in different ways. years, the middle of freedom has been awarded to artists, painters, musicians, composers, dancers whose
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expressions prompt our own reflections. roles who sees our imagination. two poets and authors whose stories stir our souls and make sense of our struggles. the scientists and explorers who reveal what we do not know and expand what we do. two businessmen and women who commit to the american ideal of innovation and guide through integrity. to educators and historians who help us understand our past for the sake of our future. and to politicians and statesmen , all recipients of this award. this award celebrates the very best of us. truth,ged pursuit of dedication to serve, and boundless capacity to imagine. when president kennedy set the moon as our new frontier, he explained if history could teach us anything, it is that man in his quest for knowledge is determined and cannot be deterred.
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to those who ask why the moon, why choose this is our goal, he quoted the british explorer george mallory, when asked if he wanted to climb mount everest, he replied simply, "because it is there." well, said president kennedy, space is there and we are going to climate. those who recognizes push forward into new frontiers of art, literature, science, diplomacy, and activism because they are there. medal of freedom and knowledge is not just that something admirable has been done but these recipients have committed themselves, their lives, their careers, their creative capacity and passion to all of us. tonight we remember that the 50 years that have passed since president kennedy formally dal,blished this me guaranteeing that we honor civilians in this capacity, he displayed his faith that our quest for knowledge and progress
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would not be deterred. and he reminded us that everyone has the capacity to explore, imagine, and give back to our great nation, no matter the path we choose. when we are told, as my generation often is, of the challenges we face are insurmountable, or that our ability to confront them is not adequate, we must remember a president who not only welcome the challenges of his day but who also saw the wisdom of recognizing the vision and passion wherever they are found. welcomes theion challenges of our time, thanks to president kennedy and his successors, we may draw upon outstanding samples of wisdom, courage, and creativity, celebrated by this award for half a century to guide us forward. it is now my very, very deep honor to ask you all to join me in welcoming the president and our first lady. thank you. [applause]
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>> good evening, everybody. please have a seat. i are so pleased to join you tonight to honor the inacy of an american leader a building dedicated to the preservation of our marriage in history. -- of our american history, and we are thrilled to be joined by so many people whose accomplishments wrote new chapters in that history.
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this morning, i recognized 16 brilliant, compassionate, wildly alented people with the presidential medal of freedom, our highest civilian award, and that was intimidating enough. tonight, i am facing dozens of you to the presidential medal of freedom, recipients of this year and years past. it is a great honor to be with you for this anniversary celebration. to wayne, thank you for hosting us. and for all of the smithsonian , with our rich and cultural heritage. and to jack, i am sure the new ambassador of japan will be pleased with how you perform this evening. i will give her a full report. to all the family members of the kennedy family, we are grateful for your presence and your adoring contributions to the success of our country.
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for centuries, awards have existed for military valor. 50 years ago, president john f. kennedy established a way to award extraordinary civilian virtue, contributions to our country, service to our democracy. thatation to our humanity has advanced the common interests of freedom loving people both here at home and around the world. since its creation, the presidential medal of freedom has paid tribute to the creativity of writers and artists and entertainers. we have recognized the leadership of elected officials and civil rights organizers, the imagination of scientists and business leaders, the grit and determination of our astronauts and athletes. way to there is no one
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contribute to the success of america. what makes us great is that we believe in a certain set of values that encourage freedom of expression and aspiration. we celebrate imagination and education, and occasional rebellion. on we refuse to set limits what we can do or who we can be. other peoples in other times have marked their moments by conquest of war, by dominion over empires. but in the arc of human history, the american experience stands apart because our triumph is not simply found in the exertion of our power. it is found in the example of our people. our particular genius over 237 years has been something more than the sum of our individual excellence rather a culmination
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of our common endeavors. it is a truth that resonated with president kennedy when he said, "i am certain after the dust of centuries has passed over our cities, we will be remembered not for our victories or defeats in battle or in public takes but for our contribution to the human spirit." and that unbending belief that the power to make great a nation is found in its people and in their freedom. i was his philosophy. that is his legacy. legacy told in villages around the world that have clean water or a new school. friend in the united states thanks to the volunteers of the peace corps. it is a legacy found in the courage of all who serve under willing likeg,
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president kennedy himself to pay any price and bear any burden for the success and survival of our liberty. it is a legacy on display in the he and jackieres championed as part of our natural character -- national character. the legacy planted on the moon when he said we would visit it and we did. and the stars beyond. but also in the breakthroughs of generations of scientists that has audacious promise. it is a legacy continued by his brothers and sisters. who have left us a more gentle and compassionate country. ean, a medal of freedom recipient herself, and a diplomat in every sense, is with us tonight. bobby, whose wife, ethel, is one of my dearest friends. as jack noted, we would be
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celebrating bobby's 88th birthday today. eunice and pat, devoted advocates for americans of all abilities. theeddy -- and teddy, youngest brother with the largest heart. he was a happy warrior who never forgot who we were sent here to serve and waged a decade-long battle on behalf of those folks who sent us here, workers rights, immigrants write, the right to affordable health care -- immigrants rights, the right to affordable health care. tonight our subsidies are with teddy's wife as she mourns the loss of her father. all told, it is a legacy of service the kennedy family continues to this day, from caroline who is already drawing crowds of her own as she settles into her role as ambassador in andn, to his great nephew
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massachusetts newest congressman, joe kennedy, to the school of public service that bears the public name and teaches young leaders how they may one day pass the torch to a new generation. man whoa legacy of a could have retreated to a life of luxury and ease, but who chose to live a life in the arena, sailing sometimes against the wind, sometimes with it. why 50 years later, john f. kennedy stands for posterity as he did in life -- young and .old, daring and he stays with us in our imagination not because he left us too soon, but because he embodied the character of the people he led. resolute, fearless, and fun-loving, affiant in the face of impossible -- affiant in
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the face of impossible odds, and determined to make the world a good one, not settling for what is rather what might be. idealism, his sober, square jawed idealism, we are reminded that the power to change this country is ours. iis afternoon, michelle and were joined by president clinton and secretary clinton to pay tribute to that proud legacy. we had a chance to lay a wreath at the grave site in arlington, where president kennedy is surrounded by his wife and younger brothers, and where he will rest in peace for all time. remembered not just for his victories in battle or in politics, but for the words that he ordered all those years ago -- "we will be remembered for contribution to the human s pirit."
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how blessed we are to live in a country where these contributions overflow, in ways both heralded and not so heralded. people in sanof francisco who just helped a little boy recovering from cancer about his superhero dreams. that is part of that spirit. the marines deploying relief ,fter a devastating typhoon across an ocean. people checking on their neighbors after a tornado. the families across the country who will spend thanks giving day cooking feasts so weathers less fortunate might eat. that is part of the spirit. that is who we are. a people whose greatness comes -- not byling for settling for what we can achieve in our lives, but also because we dare to ask what we can do as citizens to contribute to this grand experiment we call america. and that is what our presidential medal of freedom honorees embody, each and every
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one of them here today. and those who we remember posthumously. that is the living legacy of the kennedy family. and that is the responsibility we all welcome as americans for our lifetime on this planet. blessedxtraordinarily to be americans. opportunityave the to serve in ways that so many of you have served. because we have the opportunity to touch lives in ways that so many of you have touched lives. all, and god bless the united states of america. [applause]
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>> friday marks 50 years since the assassination of president john f. kennedy, and we have calls remembering today during "washington journal" at 7 a.m. eastern. at 10 a.m., the rarely seen nbc news coverage when they first reported on the assassination. and we will take you live to dallas for k meredith -- to dallas for a commemorative event in dealey plaza. from the jfk, presidential library and museum, for a musical tribute with james taylor and the u.s. naval
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academy women's glee club, performing selections from the president state funeral. a senior congressional reporter for politico, writing today that progress is being made in the negotiations between patty murray, the budget committee chairmen in the senate, and paul ryan in the house. what is the status of things? they are still negotiating. right now the hope is they will get a small deal. they're not talking about abe a, grand bargain deal -- they are not talking about a big, grand bargain deal. narrowe dealing with sequestration, automatic spending cuts that are set to deepen in the new fiscal year after january 15. the hope is they could replace at least one year, may be less than a year of those cuts, change that around other portions of the budget, attentional mandatory spending programs, increased revenue, not
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by increasing taxes but by potentially raising fees and other areas as such. the hope is they can cut some sort of middle ground on that, at least get a narrow agreement to deal with the sequester, and then set overall spending levels for the federal discretionary spending in the new fiscal year, and that would allow budgets to be written and lessen the chances of a government shutdown come january 15. there are still a long ways to go, but they're getting closer. >> in your article, you write about the pressure being applied house and senate appropriators. who specifically are you hearing from? the senate appropriations chairwoman, barbara mikulski, the house appropriations chairman, how rogers are among the appropriators pushing for -- wishing very hard for a top line agreement on the overall discretionary spending number by early december. their hope is to write a big omnibus spending bill for the if
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entire federal -- for the entire federal government, rather than a stopgap resolution which appropriators hate to do, bouncing month a month, threatening to shut down. they are not able to set priorities legislatively. the hope is they reach a deal on the overall spending level. if they do, it will make their jobs easier. >> when mitch mcconnell came over to speak to the house republicans tuesday, what did they hear specifically about the budget negotiations? >> he said that we should stick to the budget control act levels. meaning in the new fiscal year, after january 15, when the new round of sequestration takes effect, it would lessen the overall federal spending to $967 billion. he really wants to stick to that number. the issue, though, is those sequestration cuts come from
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mainly defense programs. there is a $21 billion hit to defense programs. a lot of republican defense hawks are very concerned about that and told mcconnell that directly in the closed-door session. at is the issue that republicans are going to have to struggle with. they want to cut spending, but they also do not want to see hit from defense programs, and that is really the incentive for republicans to cut a deal now to avoid those cuts to the pentagon. >> you mentioned appropriators want some kind of number by early december, and that december 13 date is looming. what are a couple of the possible trouble areas that could pop up that could grind to a halt again? >> it always comes down to the issue of taxes. revenue, democrats are saying they are open to considering things that would raise revenue that would not involve closing loopholes that would raise
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revenue, something republicans do not want to raise revenue, raise taxes of any kind. if there is not a large enough number where they can raise revenue from other areas and democrats insist on raising up some least to make of the changes to sequestration they are talking about, that could blow up a deal at the end of the day. also, if republicans insist on deeper cuts, mandatory spending programs like health care, medicare waste programs, that could blow things up at the end. it is really the same issues, taxes and environmental programs, that have dogged congress on many years and that the two members will have to get around to get even small targeted deals by the end of december. and readn follow manu his political reporting on think you for bringing us up to speed. in a few moments, susan rice
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on u.s. policy in the asia- pacific region. in about 45 minutes, a, a discussion of relations between the u.s. and the united kingdom. after that, a look at the future of digital currency. a couple of live events. span3, the senate judiciary committee look into government surveillance programs at 10 a.m. eastern. witnesses include the deputy attorney general james cole. at 2:15, a senate foreign relations subcommittee will focus on the political situation in north africa, hearing from representatives of the pentagon and state department. now national security advisor in theice on u.s. policy asia-pacific region. speaking at georgetown university, she also talked about negotiations with iran over its nuclear program. this is 45 minutes.
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[applause] >> good afternoon, everyone. thank you so much, professor growth. all of yourr exceptional work to advance american policy towards asia. staffour time on the nsc to your current contributions as director of the asia studies program at the school of foreign service. let me just begin by apologizing a little bit. if i sound a little bit hoarse best toi will do my sustain my voice through the course of what is not a short speech, and with luck i will get there. but forgive me in advance. i also want to thank the president and my former
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colleague, dean caster, for their contributions, along with professor shaw and professional or -- and professor growth, to make it possible for me to speak here today. the most important, for georgetown's unrivaled success in preparing america's future leaders, particularly some any of our policymakers. is deeplyobama committed to leaving our world more stable, more secure, more free, and more prosperous for the generations to come. those of you who are students here today are uniquely poised to seize the transformative potential of tomorrow across our rapidly changing world. and nowhere are the challenges and the opportunities we face so great as in the asia-pacific region. two years ago, in laying out his
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vision for america's role in the region, president obama said, and i quote, "asia will largely defined whether the century ahead will be marked by conflict or cooperation, needless suffering or human progress." it remains a cornerstone of the obama administration policy. hot spots emerge elsewhere, we will continue to deepen our enduring commitment to this critical region. our friends in asia deserve and will continue to get our highest level of attention. secretary john kerry has settled -- has traveled there several times and will return in a few weeks. andetary of commerce
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another led important delegations there. vice president biden will visit china, and south korea in early december. although we were all disappointed that the government shutdown compelled president obama to cancel his trip to asia in october, i am pleased to announce today that president obama will return to asia this coming april to continue strengthening our ties across the region. i would like to take this opportunity to outline what we aim to achieve in the asian pacific in the next three years. ultimately, america's purpose is to establish a more stable security environment in asia and open a transparent economic liberal,nt and a
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political environment that respects the universal rights and freedoms of all. achieving that future will necessarily be the sustained a successive administration. in the near-term, president obama will with the critical foundations and progress in four key areas -- enhancing security, expanding prosperity, fostering democratic values, and advancing human dignity. with it is the underpinning of all progress in every region. we are making the asia-pacific more secure with american alliances and an american force posture it that is being modernized to meet the challenges of our time. fleet will% of our
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be faced in the pacific. our pacific command will gain more of our most cutting-edge capabilities. as we are seeing in the philippines today, a military presence in the region was welcome, not only to deter threats, but also to provide speedy humanitarian assistance and unmatched disaster response. we are updating and diversifying our security relationships in the region to address emerging challenges as effectively as we deter intentional threats. threats.tional where urging allies and partners to take greater responsibility for defending our common interests and values. by next her, we will complete the first fundamental revision of -- by next year, we will complete the first fundamental with japan.--
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japan is creating its first ever security council. i look forward to working with --japanese down apart counterpart regional and global challenges. in south korea, we are enhancing the military capabilities to make sure our combined forces and deter and fully answer north korea's provocations. with australia, bringing our military's closer by rotating marines through darman and deepening -- through darwin and deepening -- i were doing more with thailand and the philippines to address maritime security and disaster response. could it diversify the network -- to do diversify the network, we are strengthening trilateral cooperation.
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urging them to cooperate more closely amongst themselves. when it comes to china, we seek to operationalize a new model of major power relations. that means managing inevitable --e petition while forging competition while forging deeper cooperation on issues where our interests converge. , we both seekyond to theuclearization nuclear crisis, a stable and decure afghanistan, and an en to conflict in sudan. there are opportunities to take concerted action in places like sub-saharan africa where sustainable growth would deliver
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lasting benefit to the peoples of africa, as well as to both of our countries. where are improving the quality of our hairy -- of our military relationship with china. we work on issues like counter piracy and maritime security. good military engagement and transparency -- greater military engagement and transparency can help with the stress and competition while augmenting high-level communication that has been a hallmark of this administration's approach to china. as we diversify the ways in with we do business china, we will continue to the rule ofspect law, human rights, religious freedom, and democratic principles. these are the common aspirations
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that all people share. it especially when it is not the easy or expedient thing to do. i sat on the security council of the united nations with china for over four and a half years working on many of these issues. i know all too well that we have some fundamental differences that cannot be minimized. i also know that our interest on many of the major challenges of our time can and should be more closely aligned. nowhere is this more evident than in confronting the threat that north korea poses to international peace and security. the regime threatens its neighbors. pyongyang proliferates dangerous goods and technology. it seeks to expand its nuclear weapons arsenal and its long-
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range missile program. it is in flagrant violation of international law. consequently, one of our most pressing security rules is to roll back the threat posed by north korea's nuclear and other dwmd programs. we are prepared for negotiations. they need to be authentic and her -- credible and get at the entirety of north korea's nuclear program. it must result in concrete and irreversible steps forward the nuclearization. pyongyang's attempt to engage in dialogue while keeping critical elements of its weapons programs running are not acceptable. they will not succeed. we will continue to join with international partners,
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especially china, to increase pressure on north korea to the nuclear eyes. -- dana glare ice. be will do what is necessary to defend ourselves -- and do you colorize -- denuclearize. we will do what is necessary to defend ourselves. and our allies. continue -- there will continue to be costs for future provocations. pyongyang has a choice. on one hand lies greater isolation and crippling economic consequences. on the other hand, -- another threat to peace is security and to u.s. interests
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is maritime disputes in the east and south china seas. we aim to help governments in the region to communicate better with one another so that incidents and see do not -- at sea do not unintentionally spark other complex. we encourage all parties to reject aggression and be in accordance with international law and norms and establish efule full -- peac democracies. a good step would be a code of conduct or the south china sea. how the nations and institutions of the asia-pacific manage these disputes will be a harbinger of their ability to shape their share of security future. indeed, many of asia's most vexing security challenges are
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transnational security threats. those that transcend borders like climate change, piracy, infectious diseases, transactional crimes, cyber theft, and the modern-day slavery of human trafficking. no one nation can meet these challenges alone. why we arepart increasing our engagement with the regional institutions like the association of southeast asian nation and the east asia summit. these groups allow nations to develop ideas, share best practices, i just disputes constructively, and nurture -- address disputes constructively, and nurture responsibility. it is essential to delivering more effective solutions than any one nation can muster on its
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own. constituteity goals one key element of our asia- pacific strategy, yet we have an equally essential economic agenda in the region. of 2016, we aim to transform our economic relations with the region through dramatically increased u.s. of the, implementation most ambitious american free trade agreement in a decade, and closer cooperation with china, india, and other emerging economies in pursuit of sustained global growth. future isonomic inextricably linked to that of the asia-pacific. a full quarter of the goods and services x voted that the united exported by the united
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states are bound for asia. a percentage of our imports come from that region. more than one million americans --veyed your -- serve we are committed to growing these numbers will making sure benefits are broadly shared. the united states is working to shape a more dynamic future for the entire region by promoting u.s. businesses and forging new ties of commerce. asian needs open and transparent economies and regional support for international economic norms. if it is to remain a world i'm vegan of economic -- engine economic growth. driving a global economic recovery that creates jobs in
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addressing the kinds of trade and balance a second tbd to the economic meltdown in the first place will require hard work on both sides and balance to-- the economic meltdown in the first place will require hard work on both sides of the pacific. for the countries in asia commenting shifting focus from overseas markets to strengthening the domestic sources of demand. and for most economical in the region is concluding negotiations for that transpacific ownership. -- partnership. the 12 nations a part of the negotiations represent more than 40% of global trade. establishthat we through this agreement except
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the standards for future trade agreements. -- accepts the standards for future trade agreements. help level the playing field for everyone. rights promote workers and environmental protections and build a stronger safeguards for intellectual are pretty, improving economic conditions for everyone and not just the few. nation that is willing to live up to the high standards of this agreement to join and share the benefits of -- that includes china. core of a far broader agreement expanding to
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countries across the asia- pacific. to help realize that vision, we are working to negotiate a series of agreements that will put these countries in a better position to join high standard agreements. it represents a $2.5 billion economic block that contains some of the fastest growing countries in asia, as well as some of its force. helping these dynamic economies improve their policies on key issues like investment principles will benefit them. it will also foster an even greater trade and investment climate and opportunities for the united states in southeast asia. india is projected to have the largest population of
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any country in the world and the third largest economy. u.s.g the past decade, the and india have throughout and valued their global partnership. president obama aims to make the next decade even more transformative. policy toook east india's contribution to maritime ethics expanding involvement in regional organizations, a -- and it's expanding involvement in regional organizations, together at launch a new partnership and mobilizing millions of dollars in private or public investment for solar, wind, and alternative projects in india. our governments have joined the private sector earners in both countries to launch a $2 billion
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infrastructure debt fund. the first of hopefully many future funds meant to attract financing for indian infrastructure projects. to deepening our cooperations across the broad spectrum of our relationship. the united states also seeks to elevate our economic relationship with china in the years ahead. last week, china's leaders announced plans for sweeping reform that if realized could go a long way toward leveraging -- leveling the playing field and moving china's economy toward market principles. that is an opportunity less seas. -- we must seize. we will continue insisting on
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tangible progress in areas that matter to u.s. businesses and workers. china continuing to move forward a market determined exchange rate, increasing qs access to chinese markets -- u.s. access to chinese markets, and bolster protections for u.s. companies and intellectual property rights and trade secrets, especially against cyber theft. cyber enabled espionage hurts china as well as the united states because american businesses are increasingly concerned about the costs of doing business in china. if meaningful action is not taken now, this behavior will undermine economic relationship that benefits both of our nations. two largest's
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energy consumers, energy producers, and greenhouse gas emitters, the united states and china have a duty to lead together to tackle climate change and spurred the global transition to a low carbon energy future. and june, president obama -- reached an agreement to reduce her opponent -- certain potent greenhouse gases. it will scale up successful technologies and policies run heavy-duty vehicles, smart grids , carbon capture, and sequestration. economies will be the strongest drivers of energy demand in the coming region meetsthe
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its energy needs will have critical implications or global energy supply and climate change. interest insted shifting the global energy mix to cleaner, low carbon, and more efficient energy technology. as he worked toward this goal in asia, we will partner with regional leaders in renewable and clean energy technology. m energy and in taiwan and japan , we areh korea promoting cleaner burning to meet that energy demand with lower carbon alternatives. another key driver of economic growth and development is the expansion of women's participation in the workforce
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throughout the asia-pacific. this single change has the potential to do the most a good for the greatest number of people. in developed countries like japan, full participation in the workforce by women could increase per capita gdp by as much as 4%. that in thencidence philippines, where there are making strong progress to close the gender gap, it also has an of the fastest-growing economies in the region. the world economic forum has shown that those two factors are closely correlated. simply put, this marler the gender gap, -- the small of the gender gap, the stronger the economic growth.
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promoting shared prosperity are vital elements. so too is advancing respect for the rights and values we hold .ear since world war ii, the united states has played a key role in fostering one of the most significant developments of the past century -- that dance of democracy in asia. in the early years, we must help consolidate and expand democracy across asia to enable more people to participate fully in the political life of their country. the rapid change we have seen in is showing usears what is possible. burma used to be a pariah state ruled by military and responsible for egregious
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violations of human rights. president obama took office and hundreds of brumese were put in prisons for merely exercising their right of free speech. that was until they chose another path. with theorked closely government and people of burma as they have made historic changes. more than a thousand political prisoners have and released. we're hoping it will help build an infrastructure head of the 2015 national election. we are supporting a process of constitutional reform and national reconciliation.
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that's burma moves toward greater openness and change, we are easing sanctions while encouraging responsible investment and robust support societypeople and civil activist who have suffered so long under the iron fist of the dictatorship. they're still a great deal of work ahead before burma fully transitions to democracy. the challenge of overcoming ethnic tensions and violence in predicting minorities will require persistent vigilance. if progress continues, by the end of president obama second term, we hope to have help firm or reestablish itself as a regional leader and as a thriving if mason, prospering democracy. cent, prospering
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democracy. the steady work of political reform presses on in nations across the region. united states will support those working to pry open the doors of democracy, even just a little wider from cambodia to fiji. we will continue to help nations strengthen institutions to uphold justice and the rule of law to meet the basic needs of their people. working with the open government partnership in the community of democracy will help protect civil society and supported to work to shape the region development. we will combat the corruption that makes it so difficult for ordinary citizens running for office start a business or even just send their kids to school. in every region and in every
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country, we will strive to improve protections for ethnic and religious minorities. we can help nations see the diversity of their peoples as a source of deep strength. to our values will guide us as we pursue closer relations with the countries of includingacific, those with which we differ. we will continue to champion the freedom to speak one's mind and the ability to access information freely and practice one's faith without fear. toss out when governments aside basic rights and freedoms which are the birthright of every human being. our last sete to of rules -- helping improve the well-being of the region's most vulnerable people.
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they should the same desire for dignity as all mankind. we want an asia-pacific and which poverty continues to decline. citizens are healthier. children are educated. environment is protect it. .- is protected women can participate equally and fully in their societies. we are working in partnership with countries throughout the region to give life to that vision. fight andt we can reduce preventable child deaths and approve security across the asia-pacific. we have seen real progress in all of these areas over the last five years. possiblerogress is were countries demonstrate the political will to invest in their own development and step up to do big things together.
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the future program has helped more than 400,000 rice farmers throughout the region and increasing their yields to the more efficient use of fertilizer. through the partnership for growth, we are working with the philippines to strengthen the country's foundation for economic development while improving their ability to mitigate future disasters. throughout the pacific islands, we are partnering to address challenges ranging from rapid population growth to reducing high poverty and unemployment rates. we are working with indonesia and others to craft a measurable ambitious development agenda for the world in 2015 and beyond. smart come a target
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we are working closely with nations on this goal in establishing new programs to help young people of southeast asia develop new skills and .pportunities equally, we have an economic as well as a moral stake in elevating women as full partners in every aspect of the asia- pacific. we are helping to prevent and respond to violence and combat the scourge of human trafficking . through the equal futures partnership, we are joining with countries across the region, world bank, united nations, and others to advance reforms to promote more opportunities for women to participate in the political and economic life of their countries. and burma, cambodia, thailand,
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women andhere helping their countries better manage resources and respond to pandemics and promote educational reform and improve food security. finally, we will do more to help sustainable growth by protecting the environment and conserving asia's natural resources when implementing measures to help communities adapt to the impact of climate change. we are redoubling efforts to wildlife and endangered species. planet, as we know, is a non-renewable source. it supports some 7 billion people. asia andhem are in pacific. we have a duty to those who will inherit this earth to put in
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place practices that will sustain and improve life for future generations. today byike to end highlighting a place for all of these elements -- is security, alliances, economic ties, values --t, universal has come together in a major manifestation of america's commitment to the region. the philippines is our oldest ally in asia. our nations are forever bound by the blood we shared together, the families we built together, and the history we have made together. last week, a super typhoon slammed into the philippines, leaving thousands dead and millions more in dire need of assistance. said, whent obama
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our friends are in trouble, america helps. we are on the ground. pacific command moves into action. we have put hundreds of marines from oakland now out on the ground almost immediately -- out on the ground almost immediately to help with the rescue. water purification capacity and medical services and equipment to clear roads to outlying areas. over the weekend, joining with unicef, we were able to help the philippine government bring water purification and production systems back online. it is now providing clean drinking water to thousands of
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people. cooperating seamlessly with allies in the region, particularly japan and us chile who have stepped up to help a neighbor in need -- japan and australia who have stepped up to help a neighbor in need. recovery will be a long process. the united states will stand beside the philippines every step of the way. getting back to work and rebuilding homes and schools. our pledge to the philippines reflects our broader pledge to people of that asia-pacific. america's commitment will not expire a few months or a few years from now.
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the united states will be there reliable, constant, strong, and study for the long haul. we will continue to share security and prosperity and human dignity that wheelchairs. thank you all very much. -- that we all cherish. thank you all very much. [applause] >> thank you, ambassador rice, for the comprehensive and visionary statement. it comes at a very important time. thank you. andou have a few minutes are able to take a couple of questions from our students -- i
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apologize to the audience. given the time constraint, we have collected questions in advance. fromirst question comes drew. a first-year master student in the program. his question is on china and japan. adopting a decides policy, is there anything else the u.s. can do in regards to the island disputes between china and japan? to what extent can we serve as mediator on this issue? >> that is a very important question. focused onre very the dispute over the islands. the u.s. does not take a position on the question of sovereignty, for the fact of the we have a stake in avoiding conflict and helping china and japan ovoid any
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escalations and to find peaceful, diplomatic ways to address their disputes. we are encouraging that two sites do have open channels that will enable them to avoid the risk of unintended escalations in the event of a misunderstanding or missed him indication. -- miscommunication. we are encouraging them to work on this issue with an understanding of the risk involved and the necessity of avoiding any kind of conflict that would be disastrous are only for those countries, but the broader region and the economy. >> the second question is on korea. this comes from sam who is a senior. any,ked -- what steps, if can administration take in the remaining years of president obama second term to restart the six party talks?
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how do you think negotiations with iran would impact the north korean issue? >> let me start with iran and come back to north korea. .e do not know yet we will learn in the next two days how the current round of 1 arebetween the p5 plus negotiating with iran. the last round yield a significant progress, but not a resolution. 1 remains united. on the table is what we consider to be a reasonable and well crafted first step initiative. that first step would be for a six-month period to buy time and space for comprehensive negotiation that could resolve iran's nuclear problem.
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the reason to buy that time and space is because without this interim agreement, there would be no rate on iran -- no break on iran continuing with its nuclear program while it talks and perhaps drags out talks. this interim step would halt all progress in iran's nuclear row graham and roll back its program in some key respects. enrichment, and it would give the international community unprecedented transparency into all aspects of the iranian new their program. comes to passt remains to be seen. that would be a good first step for the united states because it would enable us to test the
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prospects of a peaceful solution. time, it would give international community greater insight into the nature of this program while altering its progress in rolling it back. what important lessons does that have for north korea? if that agreement is reached, it would have been a product in large part because of the concerted pressure that the members of the international community had applied. ofwill be the product efforts over the years between the united states, france, britain, russia, china, and germany.
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the fact that the p5 plus 1 have , it might have created an opening. in the case of north korea, we have had similar unity and economic pressure. states havee united stepped up increasing the pressure on north korea. third korea is not made a decision -- north korea has not made a decision. it is important to come to the negotiating table in earnest.
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a serious engagement if we are to do this again. exactly whatnows needs to do to demonstrate that it is serious. we remain open to the resumption of negotiations. we are open and have bilateral channels for communication with north korea, but north korea has to make the fundamental choice that it is serious about denuclearization. the five countries in the six parties, the members of the security council have been very clear about what is necessary.
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>> the last question is from a first-year masters student. i am very interested to know what dr. rice's take on the newly established chinese state security committee. suppose this committee had the primary mission. what would she say to him or her? [laughter] >> i think we need to wait and see exactly the nature of the responsibility this new security council will have.
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the nature of its leadership. it is an interesting potential if i have aand formal chinese counterpart, i will look forward to working with him. i suspect maybe not a her. to work on that pantheon of issues that we deal with every day in china. in the absence of that structure, we still have very regular and open channels with chinese counterparts. closest tof those on coreership who work national security. it would be nice if there was a structure that would accelerate and coordinate chinese foreign policy and national decision- making and facilitate the kind
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of collaboration that we enjoy in here, most days, in the united states. thank you very much. [applause] also -- if i could ask you all tuesday in your seed so ambassador rice can leave the building, that would be helpful in your seats so ambassador rice can leave the building, that would be helpful. thank you. >> if you are a middle or high school students, the video competition wants to know what the most important issue congress should address next year. make a five minute to seven minute video.
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$5,000.d prize is relationson of between the u.s. and united kingdom. spoke tor ambassador the foreign affairs committee. >> our second witness today is no stranger. he was the u.k. ambassador to washington in 2007-2012. good to see you here again.
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is there anything you would like to say in the way of opening remarks? >> thank you for the opportunity to contribute. i would like to make some introductory remarks. that theng point is relationship remains the most important of the uk's international relationships. it is remarkable that despite the many cultural and other differences between us, we still have a shared approach to the world. fears ofvercome the decoupling europe and america which were prevalent during the cold war period. relationship is a close set of defense and
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nuclear intelligence connections. all of that rests on foundations which are largely nongovernmental. the human links, the vibrant cultural and educational connections and a remarkably successful commercial and economic relationship. it was very good that you delve into that just now. i do not think the fundamentals changed since the coalition government took power in 2010. the prime minister has been genuinely committed. there has been some change in the rhetoric, the objectives stated by the government. it is language designed for british, not for an american
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audience and it does not completely convey the extent of the relationship to between us. the government has stressed what the relationship for the british national interest. this is understandable and necessary in reaction to public concerns in the u.k. after iraq. obama administration has -- the usemade clear of the term essential relationship when president obama visited the u.k. was intended to underscore the relevant and operational value of the contemporary relationship and to show that neither side was simply relying on history and sentiment. after five years, it it is a cardinal feature of the
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president's foreign-policy that one of america's strength is its ability to attract and maintain strong allies. they put more emphasis on it now. europe is no longer the principal object of the american foreign-policy. instead, our value is as partners in dealing with the world political and security problems. special relationships are formed out of the daily transactions of mutual benefit. the china-u.s. relationship is probably the most important for the two sides. the u.s. needs allies in this world and the u.k. is still the closest and most globally
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capable ally that the united states has. it does not diminish key relationships. the u.s. government supported the u.s. give it toward the asia-pacific -- the u.k. government supported the pivot toward the asia-pacific region two years ago. we have our own british pivots to the east and the south reflecting a shift in economic power. that is right for america and it is right for the u.k., but some clarity is needed. the u.s. will remain a global power with enduring interest in the middle east. that was not properly understood at the time. on the u.k. side, we need to work out how are asia-pacific is
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overwhelmingly commercial or whether there are political security and economic policy elements to it as well. the u.s. would welcome europeans working with them i believe the u.k. will be a more attractive and influential partner around the world with emerging powers if it is seen to have a strong relationship with the united states. i believe the foundation that the u.k.-u.s. relationship remains strong. both the u.k. and the u.s. are both suffering from a sense of fatigue and caution after iraq and afghanistan.
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the ground interventions are out of the questions for the foreseeable future. the linear experience shows us the limits of winning wars from -- the libya experience shows us the limits of winning wars from the air. we do need to construct some new models of intelligence involvement and should aim to do this collaboratively with the united states and france. the u.s. administration worries about the debates on identity, which we are having here in the u.k. their interest is in an active international, economically liberal u.k., which is influencing the european union from the inside. watching the be
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referendum campaign. defense cuts in the next parliament could weaken the u.k.-u.s. relationship. the u.s. defense budget is also under pressure. some concerns, the administration basically accepted the british government line on our strategic defense and security review in 2010 and accepted our assurances that we will remain it. from power. a power.ld remain whether we have an navy, which carries -- which contribute to the broader assets to the asia- pacific is also a question. thank you, chairman.
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>> that was helpful and interesting. during your time as the a change ofwe had administration. did you see any difference in the approach of the government? did it result in the change of policy? >> no fundamental changes in policy. broad continuity of objectives going from the blair administration to the brown administration. there was a change in the public language used to some degree. that language has continued in government. i do not think it has affected
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the fundamentals and anyway. in the gordon brown period, primee of world events, minister brown would have located our work together on his national economic issues as very central. that is more difficult to see over a period of time. we come back to the core strategic foreign-policy. >> the responsibility of nato europe. the minister of did that come across anyone's radar? >> i do not think it had any significance. period, the main activity was afghanistan.
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it was really through that prism that we viewed it. government,esident there is a deputy prime minister. seen as arson seen vice president? >> it is useful because it does provide a neck strap area -- it does provide an extra point of contact. vice president biden plays a full role in the u.s. foreign policymaking process. he had decades of experience in international affairs. it is useful for us that there is regular contact between our deputy prime minister and him. , it it isnquiries
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important there are many other relationships as well, the u.s. is a presidential system. in this obama administration, you could argue that there is even more of the key decisions happen pulled into the white house done before. thanan before full -- before. key fore house remains any foreign-policy. that has been an important element. i would never dismiss it. it needs to be kept in perspective. the british media sometimes focuses only on the relationships at the top. >> thank you. >> if you were back at your post
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in washington, what would you be saying to the british government? are the top priorities for the u.s.- in ensuring u.k. relationship remains strong and beneficial to both countries? >> i hinted at some of those points. this is not any particular order. there are four or five key points. active inis to remain the european union. the americans want us to be active for a range of financial and foreign-policy reasons. decisions that may be coming to the u.k. over the next two years, that is the most significant -- over the next few
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years, that is the most significant. defensemaintaining our and diplomacy budget, they will both be important in the five to 10 years i had. it will be significant -- 10 years ahead. it will be significant. the americans will be looking at a range of decisions and will judge whether we have the appetite, the political will to remain active. are a number of decisions about our defense budget which are coming up on which will be debated in the united states, depending on which way we go. i think our ability to influence the united states depends on having assets and expertise available and on the table. that means retaining our
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expertise. that will continue to be the asia-pacific region. we need to resolve for ourselves whether we complaint a broader role in the asia-pacific -- we can play a broader role in the asia-pacific. are we going to extend our broader foreign-policy? are we going to maintain our expertise in different parts of the middle east jigsaw? these are the areas where we could exercise influence when we have something additional to put and cause the administration to rethink its policies. that requires maintaining our diplomatic network.
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that is a range of the things i going from the strategic to the more day-to-day issues of our assets around the world. one of the changes with the coalition government was the national security council and the national security advisor. facilitated,sted, influenced the u.s. administration in a way that was not the case before? helpful development. it was an evolution. thing in theme previous few years with a
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growing role. there is a difference. having a single national security advisor who brings together foreign and defense roleshe national security , does make a difference. i think it looks like a more coherent structure. i think to the extent it gives our national security advisor additional responsibilities is helpful in his relationship with the united states. >> when you were the ambassador in washington, how did you interact with the national security advisor compared to how you interacted with the secretary? >> in the u.k.? >> yes.
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>> any ambassador reports formally to the foreign secretary. if you were about to have a visit by the prime minister, you might direct your tactical advice on handling of visit by the prime minister primarily to the national security advisor. secretary is in a different league from the national security advisor. he is the member of cabinet responsible for foreign affairs. that is different from the role of senior official. >> was the reverend occasion where having the two -- was there ever an occasion where having the two cost difficulty? -- caused difficulty? not in my experience.
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less pronounced in the british system. i have not detected that over the period of the last few years. >> in the last parliament, the foreign affairs committee published a report. there was a lack of a dedicated ministerial focus within the foreign office team on the united states relationship. the minister of state had other responsibilities. is there -- is that a problem? >> the honest answer is no. the key thing is both the prime minister and the foreign
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secretary, they devote a significant chunk of their time to thinking about the u.k.-u.s. relationship. i do not think it can be done at those levels effectively because the minister does not have an obvious counterpart. if the assistant secretary of state to europe or you could say it is the secretary of state to the americans. .t really would not work the prime minister and the foreign secretary are the two with the relationships. they have to bear the burden in making sure the relationship is in good shape. does notited kingdom
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make a strategic approach to its relations with the united states. that is married to some criticism. the -- your response to do we take a strategic approach? how would you assess performance of the strategy? it was created on your watch. >> thank you. first of all, this is a difficult issue because the u.k.-u.s. relationship is a huge relationship. it is very difficult to easily summarize it. it covers most elements of the foreign office. it covers significant chunks in the rest of government.
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it is quite difficult to capture it. governments have tried to think about the relationship as a whole and it tried, if you are looking at the middle east or the asia-pacific, have looked at the u.k.-u.s. role going forward. i think it is fair to say that in the last couple of years, the increased volatility in the world and the pace of events over matching our ability to think forward rationally has been a factor and most foreign ministers around the world would find themselves doing more firefighting than long-term strategic planning. you are right. the strategy board was announced
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visit president obama's in the spring of 2011. it was an american proposal. it was to give expression to the fact that we were already doing a great deal of foreign-policy coronation, discussion -- coordination, discussion in any event. i do not know -- it has been a couple of years now since i was in washington. i do not think the government at the time said this is the be-all and end-all. it was a useful addition to what we had rather than something that was fundamentally different. i think it is useful, but not absolutely essential to the overall relationship.
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problems ofome coordination on the american side, just getting the team , which hampered its first few months. not think this is critical to the issue of thinking forward. the prime minister and the president have relatively little time together. you have a sort of overview of the overall relationship. nextat takes me on to my point. a mistakeyou make in this country as american for a policy -- foreign policy being
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monolithic. you have the state department, you have the senate, you have nsc, and, you have the you have the pentagon. do you think we have difficulty here formulating policy when there are so many separate sources of policy on the other side of the atlantic? >> it is something we have to bear in mind the whole time. the administration -- it takes a its time to coordinate to then where i can say congress or allies, this is where we are. we have to bear that in mind. , whetherolutely right it is in london or washington, you have to cover all those
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bases. it is all part of these -- this backwards and forwards. from this more close environment in which the ministers operate in the u.k. to, point -- two, a point, when the view, thatame to a would carry the day. we are in a different world today. ambassador inre washington, how did you cope with the fact that you were -- how was it
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possible to do that? >> the embassy has got to be equipped to do that. there is a lot of direct contact with london. there is traffic in all directions. to coverto be staffed the waterfront in washington. officerhanistan desk needs to be just as active on nsc as with in the the day-to-day contacts in the state department. i was in washington anymore junior role in the 19 -- i was in washington in a more junior role in the 1980s.
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i will take an example of the iran sanctions. a couple of years ago, there was another round of sanctions and debated in the u.s. congress. one touched on the interest of bp. we had to lobby very hard to make sure that did not happen. there was a cast that agreement, but we had to do it ourselves and with our european partners on the hell. -- european partners on the hill. >> it looks as though the nsc is behind the curve. theere a bit slow to detect
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change in policy toward iran. is there something we could do -- change the daily activities? >> i am not sure whether your examples are right. point is tokey ensure you have reasonable -- that goes without saying. if you do, to make sure people in the embassy are as open as they can be to a very wide range of people. you were one of those who had a insightd occasional
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into american policy as it was evolving. others in the embassy kept in very close touch with you. we will have a take on the way american policy is developing. if more of that needs to be done, that is something to think about. suggestionck to your about resources. earlier theoned change in terminology from a pivot to a rebalancing. u.s. strategic landing was
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important in the past. fact theess, given the , the communistr .ountries are gone attention is turning away from europe because of the geopolitical developments taking place because of the rise of china and everything else that is happening. the u.k. is far less important to the u.s. think the pivot had very much to do with europe. i think it was conceived strategically as a signal that the united states is going to
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get out of two very difficult and aa preoccupation military intervention in afghanistan and iraq, and wanted the next decade to be about launching a new type of partnership with a range of emerging countries around the world. it was an area of obvious economic growth. that is what it was about. the fact was that a number of european who felt they were a bit slighted by the pivot did make their views known. the administration realized they had not said enough about this worldview and that came through in a number of subsequent statements.
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the 1990s,t -- since the balkans or the last time the united states were really focused on europe as a geopolitical object in its own right. since the 1990s, the key thing for america as they look to europe is whether we are participating with them in world affairs. whether the europeans were doing enough as a whole to support the nato efforts in afghanistan. active andwere responsible partners on issues like iran. yes, we have been, and increasingly so. at,s that they are looking whether europe is an effective global partner for america.
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i do not think it was about europe. -- was you interpret there some other factor involved? >> i do not think it was the , a completely single model. in the case of libya and syria, the truth was the british prime minister and the french government and maybe a few
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others were more in favor of action than the united states were. i do not think we would've had the nato operation in libya without the prime minister and without sarkozy. the prime minister argued for a --e active western european we had theink example of the use of chemical weapons in syria and it was the american president who had to persuade prime minister cameron. prime minister cameron already saw the need for action. in both countries, public opinion was extremely cautious. a majority was opposed to any form of direct military action,
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which is what came through here. that was ultimately the reason why american policy evolved as it did. even before the american position eve alt, my immediate reaction -- evolved, my immediate reaction was that it the type ofange relationship we have with america in one go. watching the american reaction in the days ahead for the president felt it necessary to consult congress. had there been a congressional vote, it it would have been touch and go. numbers and the house looked to be negative. in terms of having the u.k. and ,he u.s. at a popular level
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there is quite a shared set of views in the world we are in after afghanistan. the house of commons vote as having a negative vote on the u.k.-u.s. relations. the u.s. was in the same boat. their relationship would not be affected. >> i do not think so. for both countries, there is a long-term issue about the appetite to take action in the world and whether we are going to remain actively involved in world affairs. i do not mean a simple boots on the ground answer to the world's
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problems, but are we going to be actively involved. -- actively involved? there is a question mark about that in britain, whether our political leadership has the stomach for those decisions and issues for the future. in thell come through next parliament. america is going through much the same debate. feels that we are in a transition, the shape of the post second world war open -- order is breaking down. is thereof uncertainty in both countries. it came as a surprise to the
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u.s. was the fallout from that influence the decisions in america as to what they would do? >> i think there was surprise. i thought there was surprise in london, too. i think there was surprise in washington, certainly. the fact that the prime minister had a vote was one of the factors which influence the president. defensive. be less the fact is british policy on syria and the decision of the british parliament are consequential matters for the united states and it should not
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be shock horror for us. that is the way it is. impact.ave some nigel, the special relationship was so special [inaudible] we perhaps enable the u.s. to gain goodwill to cheaply as a result? a tooo not want to make simplistic a distinction between the people who practice the relationship in the way our media describe it. i think our media have a
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tendency to portray the relationship too much in personal terms. to be so touchy about it and so sensitive to each raising of an eyebrow or a slight gesture one way or another, that you can guess the strategic impact of it can be lost. i certainly recognize the thought that we, crossed to the americans -- we, crossed to the americans as overly defensive and sensitive about it. we need to be more confident about it. worry less about those small things which can sometimes be big media issues, but which are not important in the long run. if you look around the world, no one has supplanted the u.k. as
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the united states most significant ally. particularly in the areas we are talking about today. in the economic area, you could argue about the role of germany as a partner. i do not think that we have sold our position short. there are lots of examples of where we have advocated our policy to the united states and won in the end. sometimes they have come round to our point of view after further internal deliberation. trend of yourhe question, which is that we
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should not be so hung up on the superficial aspects of the relationship. the relationship has to be in service of our national issues emma whether it is nuclear or burma, or whatever it is. >> i would like to come back to business briefly, this about americans. i completely agree that we need to be more confident perhaps. that can be sometimes disagreeing with americans when we have to. can i dig down into more detail military role our capabilities play in the relationship? we know the special relationship is based on a variety of factors , two