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be very vigilant in looking for this sort of thing in stadiums and skyscrapers and subways.
Second, the worst case that I could plausibly sketch out would be a few thousand dead Americans in terms of what he could plausibly do with the agents he has under his control. I don't think he has the ability to release this kind of agent in 100 places simultaneously and kill 500 people in each of those 100 places. I don't think he has that kind of capability. Maybe he can get lucky in one or two places.
So it is still a pretty bad scenario, and I am nervous about it, as well. I think we could lose more Americans in that than we might lose on the battlefield. But, either way, we have to be ready for the worst case on the battlefield for a few thousand dead Americans and a worst case here in the United States of possibly that many, as well.
Mr. WELDON. The gentleman from Maine is recognized for five minutes, Mr. Allen.
Mr. ALLEN. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you both for being here. I am struck by listening to both of you, and listening to all the people we have had before us in the last two or three weeks. And this has been, Mr. Chairman, an extraordinary experience for us because
we have tended to have two people with differing views before us. There has been some balance and a lot of good give and take. And, you have followed that tradition, I guess, of the last few weeks, so I thank you both.
am struck by the uncertainties that lie ahead. The truth is, when we try to think about casualties, who knows? You know, sometimes, Dr. Cohen, when you suggest that our hope is that troops in the field will not follow orders from Saddam Hussein, you know, I suspect that is not a very healthy thing to do. Who knows? That seems to me hard to rely on. But, at the end of the day, we just do not know. We are opening up a can of worms and we are going to move ahead.
There are two things that trouble me, and I don't know if this is a question, but I will ask you. One is the way the administration has opened this debate and dialogue. It was appropriate to open the debate. It was appropriate to say that Saddam Hussein is a bad guy in a more complex way than that. That he has weapons of mass destruction. It was appropriate to think about how to go at him and how to sort of reinstitute an inspections regime or
But, by elevating—by stating the goal is regime change instead of disarmament, by elevating preemption to a doctrine which is unprecedented in the last 50 years of American foreign policy, the result is to create hostility where it need not be created. So, I would be interested in comments on that.
Chuck Boyd, former-General Charles Boyd, was here not so long ago, and he said the problem that we have with our foreign policy is managing resentment. And, whenever we have had administration witnesses here they have said we are the top dog; people are bound to resent us. But three years ago, they did not. And, right after September 11th, they did not, either. It is our policies that have created resentment in places where we need not have created resentment. And, it is true with our allies in Europe, whether we
are dealing with a biological weapons convention or the global warming, it is true around the world in a number of other ways.
How can we do what needs to be done to deal with Saddam's weapons of mass destruction, while minimizing the resentment that is going to be out there in the Middle East and elsewhere if it is, as you said Mr. O'Hanlon, going to be seen as America's war?
Either one, in either order. Thank you.
Dr. COHEN. I do not carry a brief for the administration. It is one of the great things about being an academic. So I won't try to defend the way they have presented the issue.
I think just one on the record, it seems to me American policy has been regime change. That is consistent. That was the Clinton administration, too. And, to get to a point I made in my testimony, I think there frequently is more continuity in American policy than either party would like to really acknowledge. And, just as an American citizen, I think that is a very good thing.
I think the problem of Saddam was bound to come up in the next administration, no matter what. The election cycle was taking over as it was coming to a pitch. Sooner or later, we would have come to it. I think September 11th and a bunch of other things have brought it to salience.
I think that phrase, “managing resentment” is a good one. There may be things you can do from just the kinds of conversation you have to what gestures you make. At the end of the day, this will be seen as America's war. It will be America's war. And, we will be resented and there will be people who will try to control us or thwart us or stymie us in some way for all kinds of reasons, some of which I spoke about. Within limits, we just have to live with that.
I agree with you, one should do everything possible to try to mitigate that and prevent it and so on. I think we should not deceive ourselves about the nature of the reaction to September 11th. That was a reaction of pity. As long as we were pitiable, we would be pitied. When we begin to do things, we are not going to be pitied and people's attitudes will be different.
Dr. OHANLON. Congressman, it is a very tough question and a huge challenge that is going to be with us for a long time. Let me say two specific things that are positive to the administration, and two that are critical to the administration on that front, and then I will leave it at that, because it is too big a topic to begin to exhaust.
I was pleased again by the U.N. speech of the President of September 12th. I think it struck the right balance. This is an urgent problem that we have to deal with now, but we are going to try to do it multilaterally. I thought his tone was actually much different—now moving to one of my criticisms—than what his own Vice President and Secretary of Defense had been using the entire summer up until then. And frankly, I think that even though there is a certain argument for a good-cop/bad-cop approach toward diplomacy, I thought Mr. Cheney and Mr. Rumsfeld went too far in a number of points.
In an August 26th speech, for example, the Vice President said that Saddam uses whatever weapons of mass destruction-he cannot be stopped from using whatever weapons of mass destruction
that he has. Well, to my mind that ignores the last 12 years of deterrence. And, I think you could have a debate over whether Saddam with a nuclear weapon would do this or that. I don't want to see that scenario unfold, but he has been-generally been deterred by the last 12 years,
Also, Mr. Rumsfeld and Mr. Cheney were entirely dismissive of inspections, even if they are made much more rigorous, which the administration is now trying to do. I believe this stokes resentment. I think it was too far. I think they should not have used that tone and that language. And I also think Mr. Rumsfeld has to be a lot more careful about establishing a link between Saddam and al Qaeda. If there is a link, we need to hear more convincing evidence than he has portrayed so far.
In fact, in August, I remember very well one week when Mr. Rumsfeld said there are al Qaeda inside of Iraq, and since Saddam is a dictator, we have to assume he knows about it. And then a couple of days later, Deputy Secretary of State Armitage said, no, the al Qaeda in Iraq that we are aware of are in Kurdistan, beyond Saddam's control.
That sort of thing is not good for the way in which this administration is perceived, because then it seems they are trying to invent arguments to do something they want to do for their own reasons, to overthrow Saddam instead of sticking to the evidence.
So, I think on that point, the September 12th speech is much better than the preceding six weeks of administration rhetoric.
A couple of last quick points. Two more on Afghanistan. I think we need to be true to our own rhetoric of a year ago. We said that we were going to make that place a much better place in the future than it was at the time. We have accomplished that. I give great credit to the administration for winning the war against the Taliban, but we need to do better with the peace operation. I think that means a couple thousand Americans may have to be a part of that operation. Even the forces in Operation Enduring Freedom have helped a great deal. The administration deserves some credit for that. I think we have to go the next step and try to expand the International Security Assistance Force beyond Kabul, using American forces as one catalyst for increasing international participation.
I will finish with a very positive note on the administration. I think their foreign aid initiative is extremely commendable: 50 percent increase in development assistance. Democrats like me have to be careful to give them credit for that, because it is an issue that has been dear to our hearts for many years, but they are the ones that finally found the political moment and the political opportunity and the political courage to do it. And, I think it is a very good idea, and I salute them for that.
So, there are some things that are going in a positive direction; other things that may still need some work.
Dr. COHEN. If I could just add something, since some daylight finally opened up between us. First, on deterrence. There are a lot of things we haven't deterred. We haven't deterred the Iraqis from trying to kill our pilots, which they try to do on a daily basis. We haven't deterred the Iraqis from supporting suicide bombing in Israel. We haven't deterred the Iraqis from continuing to pursue
extremely aggressive weapons of mass destruction programs. We can deter them from attacking Kuwait, which is a very straightforward thing to do. There are a lot of things we do not deter.
I also—and here I disagree with Michael. I think, actually, the Secretary and the Vice President were doing a service by telling the truth about inspections, which is it is really a no-hope strategy, because the Iraqis will thwart us the way they have thwarted inspections over a full decade. I do not see how one can reasonably think that there could be an inspection regime that works. The odds are so overwhelmingly against it that we have to look that one in the face.
And, a lot of our friends overseas do not want to believe that; and good people frequently do not want to believe unpleasant facts but they remain facts.
Mr. WELDON. Thank you.
Mrs. DAVIS OF CALIFORNIA. Thank you. I appreciate you all for being here as well. I think we have had some good give and take. I really do appreciate, Mr. Chairman, as well the fact that we have had a number of hearings.
I wonder if I could just go beyond the issue of what happens afterwards a little bit, because I think there are concerns we could easily win the battle—I do not have any question that that would happen—but lose the war in the long-run.
One of the questions that we raised the other day was around the policy of preemption, whether or not this sets a precedent for others around the world.
Could you address that? I would suggest Mr. Perle had said that this is a unique situation here. And, I think we would all accept that fact. But I suspect uniqueness is also like beauty: in the eyes of the beholder. And I wonder if you could speak to that. What else are we putting in place through these actions and how do you think we would mitigate against that for the future?
Dr. COHEN. You know, I don't know whether the administration was wise to highlight the word “preemption”. It seems to me it has always been implicit in any serious defense analysis if we saw a serious threat directed against us that was imminent, that we would act against it. And, if the French saw a bunch of nuclear missiles showing up in Libya and the Libyans were talking about the need for a preemptive strike on Paris, the French would do something about it, whether or not they would announce it as the doctrine of preemption or not.
I think it would be wise to highlight how extraordinary this regime is and how different it is. Your point about winning the battle and losing the war is right, and I think it is right for you to ask lots of questions about what follows. I think as cautious as one should appropriately be about the use of force, we should also bear in mind that there are some possibilities that some good things may come out of this; obviously, the good things for the people of Iraq not living under that regime.
But, other good things. We could reduce our dependence on military basing in Saudi Arabia. One of the hidden costs of the way the first Gulf War ended was a long-term military presence in Saudi Arabia. And, as we now know from, among other things, the
fatwahs of Osama bin Laden, the long-term presence of American military forces in Saudi Arabia has been a force for disruption in that part of world. If you look at what are the things that burn him up most, that is one of them.
Similarly, one of the things that has caused a great deal of upset in that part of the world has been the suffering of the Iraqi people. Those are the responsibilities of Saddam Hussein. But the fact that we were out there imposing sanctions is also part of that.
The long-term implications of having a friendly state on Jordan's eastern border. The implications of having a pro-American or at least a state that is allied with the United States on Syria's border.
The possibility of the impact on Iran of having a different kind of moderate secular state in that part of the world, when you already have the Iranian population deeply discontented with theocratic rule. Good potential there, as well.
I am not saying all of those good things will happen. They may well not, but I am just saying we should be open to the possibility that there will be some long-term beneficial consequences from this, as well.
Mrs. DAVIS OF CALIFORNIA. May I ask you—we could all, I think, think about the best scenario, and that democracy would bloom in that part of the world. But, I am wondering are we going through the right process of really discerning the chance of that happening versus the chances of something else happening? Do you think that what you are saying—and perhaps, Dr. O'Hanlon, you could respond, as well.
Dr. COHEN. I have many friends in the administration, and there is a range of views. I think some of them think that there is really potential-not to create Jeffersonian democracy, but really a different kind of Arab regime than is out there. You have some who think that if you could get to where Jordan is, it would be fabulous. I tend to think that is the case. And others say, “Look, even a chastened thug is better than what we have got.” So I think there is a range of views.
What I do not have a window into is what kind of planning we have done for post-war Iraq. It is a central issue. It cannot just be the Pentagon. It should be a civilian-dominated effort. But, beyond that, I just do not know.
Dr. O’HANLON. Thank you for the question. I tend to think this administration will be responsible about this issue but I worry that just as in Afghanistan, where their rhetoric was better than, frankly—than what they delivered in the form of a stabilization operation, I think they are going to have to be held to responsible policy in a post-war situation largely by the Congress. So, I think in the end, these are such professional people and such a good foreign policy team, I can't see them walking away from Iraq.
But, on the other hand, they are so repulsed by the notion of state-building or nation-building, I am not sure how the whole thing will play it out. So, I am very glad you are keeping the issue prominent.
A couple of other points that you raised in your earlier question, as well. On the preemption doctrine, it is hard to assess if it matters if we talk about this as a doctrine. I agree with Eliot that it is the sort of option that people always have, not just in the United