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Secretary RUMSFELD. It is not clear to me what is public. There is no question but that there are—that Iraq has been listed as a terrorist state for many years. Iraq has engaged in terrorist acts. Iraq has—is currently offering rewards to the families of children who do the suicide bombings. I think it is 20–$25,000 per family. There are currently al Qaeda in Iraq. There are other terrorist groups in Iraq.
The connection it seems to me, however, ought to be looked at slightly differently. There is no question but the Intelligence Community can give you a good deal of detail if one is looking for it, and they would be happy to do so.
But I don't know that. It seems to me the critical point is the one that Mr. Andrews raised, and it is that nexus between a country that is actively developing weapons of mass destruction that is known as a terrorist state and the use of those weapons, whether by them or through a proxy terrorist network, and it is that that has changed the equation in the world in this 21st century. So even if they did not have terrorist connections, which indeed they do, the potential they have to use terrorist networks to dispense weapons of mass destruction is what is qualitatively different in our current circumstance.
General MYERS. Could I add one thing? It is probably obvious, but I think it bears repeating, and that is, as you know, in Afghanistan as we would recover documents from al Qaeda and equipment, it left no doubt of their quest for weapons of mass destruction. I mean, there is absolutely no doubt that they have tried to make them. They have manuals on how to use them, how to disperse them, and it goes back to that nexus again. And I would say for one of the threats we are facing, al Qaeda, that they clearlythere is no doubt in anybody's mind that they want weapons of mass destruction and would use them.
Secretary RUMSFELD. I will look into the Defense Science Board for you.
Mrs. DAVIS OF VIRGINIA. Thank you, Mr. Secretary. Thank you, gentlemen.
Secretary RUMSFELD. Mr. Chairman, may I just make one comment to Congressman Kirk?
Mr. HUNTER. Absolutely.
Secretary RUMSFELD. Someone checked, and the answer is that today is September 18th, and this says that on September 17th, Operation Northern Watch aircraft reported receiving fire on three occasions at: 3:14, at 3:20 and at 3:30 a.m. eastern standard time on the 17th.
Mr. KIRK. So after the arrival of letter, Iraqi armed forces fired on coalition aircraft implementing a U.N. resolution?
Secretary RUMSFELD. I don't know what time the letter was delivered. I do know what time we were fired on.
Mr. KIRK. Thank you.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentlemen, gentlewoman. Maybe the air defense folks in Iraq were at the Dairy Queen when the letter was sent out. They never got the word.
The gentlelady from California, Mrs. Davis.
Mrs. DAVIS OF CALIFORNIA. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you, Mr. Secretary, General Myers, for being here and for spending so much time. I appreciate it.
I think the issue that you raised at the beginning of your testimony and my colleague has just mentioned it as well, I think the public is having difficulty connecting the dots with the war against terrorism, and in fact, what I hear in my district is that we haven't completed that war yet. And knowing the effort that still has to be made in Afghanistan, I guess I would ask, you know, does it surprise you that people are concerned about that, and how do you expect that we can continue to make that case if in fact you think that that is an important case to be made?
And the other issue that I wanted to raise was the question that is being asked of me is basically what will this war look like? I think that the American people are used to fairly antiseptic wars, and yet we know that given the situation that you have talked about, if in fact the weapon of mass destruction and biological and chemical weapons are mobile, that they are underground, that we have even said that the inspectors would never find them, you know, then how do we address them in a war against the weapons of mass destruction rather than the people of Iraq? Can you speak to this without obviously speaking in a classified fashion?
Secretary RUMSFELD. Thank you.
Mrs. DAVIS OF CALIFORNIA. How can I answer my constituents on those issues?
Secretary RUMSFELD. Sure. It is interesting. I noted that the Iraqi Liberation Act passed the House in 1998 by a vote of 360 to 38, I am told, just overwhelming; you know, 10 times the support. What has taken place since that act has passed has been nothing good and all bad. My guess is that these first of all, it is—it ought not to be surprising - it is not surprising to me and I don't think it ought to be surprising that these are tough issues, that we are in a new security environment as a country, that it is important that the public engage these issues and think about them and discuss them and analyze them, because they are enormously important questions, and we have seen a shift in how one defends one's self and it is just plain different today. And the American people will understand that as they think about it, and I think they have understood it, and increasingly.
What would war look like? You are right. You are not going to deal from the air with weapons of mass destruction. That is to say, if the President and the Congress and the country and the world decided that something needed to be done and Iraq was uncooperative, continued to be uncooperative, the idea that you could address their weapon of mass destruction capability from the air is just factually not true. It would take deep penetrators, and it would require capabilities that would not be pleasant to have to use.
That means you would have to address the problem from the ground, and what it would look like and how long it would last is not knowable, but it is a country that has probably got military capabilities, something like 40 percent of what it had 10 years ago, and ours are much more lethal. And it has got a population that is held hostage and is not enamored of the government, and it has a military that has a pattern of recognizing that it is better off not
fighting for terribly long. And yet, nonetheless, anyone who thinks it is easy or clean or antiseptic is wrong. It is a terribly difficult, dangerous business.
Mrs. DAVIS OF CALIFORNIA. Can you conceive of a situation where we really would not necessarily need to dismantle the underground network of weapons that they may have? Because I think the issue has been raised whether it is regime change or whether it is the disarmament, and in fact we may never be able to get to all the weapons of mass destruction.
Secretary RUMSFELD. Oh, it is doable if the regime wanted to cooperate, it is imminently doable. I mean, there are people there who know where they are. There are people who are if the regime said, look, enough of this nonsense, invading our neighbors and developing nuclear and chemical and biological weapons and threatening the regimes of neighboring states, threatening public officials of other governments, we are not going to do that anymore. We are going to cooperate. We are going to change. It is perfectly possible to go in there and get rid of all that stuff. It takes time. It takesyou have to do it from the ground, but it can be done.
Mrs. DAVIS OF CALIFORNIA. And Mr. Chairman, one more quick second, just whether or not we can conduct effective operations against Iraq with the help of—without the help of allies in the Middle East. Could we do it without their help?
General MYERS. I think we have I mean, we have addressed that in a couple previous questions, that we expect to have some help, and I think our reluctance to talk about exactly how to characterize that is probably for good and sufficient reason, but we would expect to have some help, matter of fact.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentlelady. The gentleman from South Carolina, Mr. Wilson.
Mr. Wilson. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and Mr. Secretary, General Myers, thank you very much for being here today. I think the testimony that you have provided has been very convincing, the facts that you have presented which have been in the American media over and over again, but thank you for reiterating that. But also, I really enjoyed the logic that you presented today in answering many of the questions and concerns, and I have a unique perspective. I, personally, am a very proud member of the Army National Guard currently, the only one serving in Congress. Additionally, I have three sons who are in the military in uniform, and so I have a concern and interest as a parent, but I also have faith in both of you. And I know of your devotion to those of us and our children who are in the military, and I just feel so confident with both of you in charge. It means a lot.
I also want to thank you, too, for your recognition of the role of the National Guard and Reserves. We are trained. We are committed. There will be no need for a national draft. Our personnel are very enthusiastic. I had the privilege of serving annual training at Fort Stewart in May and Fort Jackson in August, and I saw firsthand the active Guard and Reserve. There is a deep commitment.
I also appreciated the testimony about the economic consequences of September the 11th, the murder of over 3,000 American citizens in New York, in Pennsylvania, at the Pentagon, but then the economic consequence that was itemized, Mr. Secretary,
of $250 billion. You then identified the Dark Winter exercise, where within two months a million Americans could be killed, and this would be spread out all over the United States.
Did that report indicate the economic catastrophe that would be caused by such havoc?
Secretary RUMSFELD. I don't believe it did. I think it was more done from a medical standpoint.
Mr. WILSON. And the reason I bring that up is I was elected to Congress nine months ago today. My role was a real estate attorney prior to coming here, and I don't think people realize that aside from the loss of life, the economic consequence of, say, the collapse of the insurance industry, and then you wouldn't be able to have loan closings everywhere in the United States, not just where the attack occurred.
Mr. WILSON. And I really do appreciate the comments of my colleague from New Jersey that he raised the situation of possibly a ploy. But this is just so far-reaching. And, again, I appreciate your recognition that the challenge we have is action or inaction.
Secretary RUMSFELD. Thank you very much for your very generous comments. After serving on active duty as a Navy pilot, I also served in the Reserves for a number of years, and I quite agree with your assessment.
I was just passed another note that from the National Command Center that Coalition aircraft were fired on today in Operation Northern Watch at 4:31, 4:33, and 4:40 eastern time on September 18th.
Mr. HUNTER. Another exclamation point on their commitment to abide by the U.N. resolution.
Mr. WILSON. There is a new Hitler that needs to be addressed. Thank you. No further questions.
Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman.
Mr. LANGEVIN. I too want to join my colleagues in thanking you for being here and for your testimony and the job that you are doing. It is outstanding and today's hearing I think was very helpful in allowing us to better understand your thinking and where w are headed and what we are proceeding to do.
Not so much a question but really a comment if I could, an observation: I, as many of my colleagues, withhold judgment as to whether we are going to support a resolution to authorize force, and of course it would depend on what that resolution would look like and such. But I would just say from my standpoint, I have observed-and I speak for many of my colleagues, I believe, as well that we have seen a marked difference in the debate both before the President went to the U.N. and after the President went to the U.N.
And clearly, he is building a stronger case against Iraq and doing it in the context of bringing the international community into the debate and into any proposed action that would be taken, and I think that it is important for us to keep our moral authority in the world as the world's sole remaining superpower.
And I would just urge you and your colleagues to continue to urge the President to continue down that path. I think it is the
right thing to do and ultimately we will have a better outcome and will be most effective. I thank you again for the job that you do.
Secretary RUMSFELD. Thank you very much. I am sure the President agrees with
the comments you have made. Mr. HUNTER. Thank you very much, Mr. Secretary, and thank you for having the endurance you have had, you and General Myers, to go throughout the entire committee. I think this has been worthwhile to listen to you and discuss this with you.
Let me throw out one thing that is of concern. We are going to have a hearing tomorrow on the technological capability of Iraq and how it has been enhanced by illegal and in some cases, legal means by technology transfer from the West, including sadly, in some cases from the United States.
Do you have any thoughts on how we and this is a situation that recurs throughout the world, not just Iraq-but how we as the leaders of the Western World should attempt to stem this flow of technology which at some point may be used to kill our own uniformed people on the battlefield?
Secretary RUMSFELD. History suggests that it is a very difficult thing to do, that people-immediately after a tragedy, people step forth in other countries and agree to a set of sanctions, that let's prevent this hostile nation from having these capabilities. And so they end up with counterproliferation activities and consultations and meetings and a list of things that should be prohibited.
But over time as things relax, we find that someone wants to cut a corner and someone wants to sell something they should not be selling. You are exactly right. You are going to have a very full hearing tomorrow because there is a great many things that are moving into that country that are increasing Iraq's military capability every day. They are buying dump trucks, taking the tops off and putting artillery pieces on them. They are buying transporters that are too narrow for a tank and then expanding them 6, 8, 10, 12 inches so that they are perfectly capable of carrying a tank.
It is a reality that for a period, the capability of Iraq after Desert Storm dropped, and it is also a reality that some recent years because of dual use technologies, because of general relaxation of tensions, that they are able to go forward and have these capabilities.
One thing that it seems to me is important is that in the event that a decision is made to use force with respect to Iraq, the United States will want to know from other countries what it is they have been selling Iraq that can be used militarily so we can know some of the kinds of technological capabilities that they may have that we may not know. And I know for a fact that before Desert Storm, some consultations were made by the United States to other countries to try to determine if they had sold things to Iraq that could impose a dangerous threat that the United States was not aware of, and the answer was "yes," and they were able to find out that information and save lives because of that information.
So you can be certain we will be interested to know what countries have been doing with Iraq.
Mr. HUNTER. And Mr. Secretary, with respect to the Export Administration Act, which is often discussed and which we may see very shortly in terms of coming to the House floor, this committee has always stood very firmly on the side of having intensive review