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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  August 6, 2015 4:00pm-6:01pm EDT

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>> are significantly higher than in the united states. we do not see in the united states the groups, oldest groups that have been instrumental in european setting in radicalizing and mobilizing a lot of people from syria. we barely see them in the united states. we actually do not see them in many cases. the number are a significant difference. there are a lot of differences in terms of dynamics between the two sides of the ocean. in europe, i'm simplifying things a lot. i think we see a lot of clusters and a lot of peer-to peer radicalization and mobilization. as i said, the on -- online
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propag -- >> if you look at maps where individuals go to syria and iraq from different europeans country, you'll see that they are not evenly divided in any country, but they come from certain towns, actually certain navy neighborhoods in both cities. there's a connection, two or three guys will go first. then they call friends, cousins, class mates. yes, they contact them through media. you see more scattered more individuals here and there.
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less clusters. in the united states we should a bit nuance. they decide to mobilize because of the interactions they have online. if you read some of the journalistic reports that have been done, an excellent new york times article about this girl in rural washington states who was groomed, i think that's the right term that's been used online, somebody with no personal interaction with any -- with any cluster. but i think we do feel in the united states small cases of small clusters, but we see groups of people radicalize
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together and mobilize together but attention the problem dates back to 2006-2007. we see the same sort of clusters mobilizing in syria now, but small clusters throughout the country has been dismantled. recently just last few weeks, a group of young individuals in the new york and jersey area. somebody -- smaller group in the boston area. group of central asians. but it's a bit of misconception to just see the american foreign fighters seen as scattered individuals here and there just
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radicalizing on social media. it is, indeed, more difficult for syria, we do not see the clusters as we see in the u.s. i think that's one of the reasons that explains why in the states we have seen in comparative terms, large number of lone actor's attack. for example, garland, the shooting, attempting attack in garland texas. it's very difficult to characterize, find a clear jahadi footprint. i'm thinking about shoot -- chattanooga, beheading in
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oklahoma. very strange cases, very difficult to categorized, but there's a lot of issues that have to do with mental health, personality disorders and so on. one could argue that a lot of these individuals in europe would find it much easier to mobilize in the direction of syria and iraq. here for one reason or the other do not find that outlet and maybe let anger out in a different way. the final point -- i'm going to wrap it up here, the most interesting part is the q and a part for sure. the government's point of view, on both sides, on the european sides there's been a
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strengthening of the harder parts spectrum. legislations has been enhanced in both sides of the ocean particularly in european countries major efforts have been made. so if the europeans feel they need to catch up in tightening screws and being harder on the provisional count of terrorism side of things -- on the u.s. perspective where there is a legal framework that is gemmy -- generally speaking much tougher. what's lacking the cv, the softer side of the spectrum, which is increasingly seen, not just in europe but the united states as crucial important as a program -- i apologize for the shameless pitch here. we have been focusing on the aspect. we issued a report about the
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status violent terrorism in america and basically what we argue is that the united states lacks behind to both european countries for a variety of seasons, -- reasons. yes there is a strategy. and it is clear, and this is something that was said in testimony before congress by a variety of officials, we cannot arrest our way out of this problem. and there are cases in which it's very difficult to operate with a traditional law enforcement tools, in many cases are effective, don't get me wrong, but in some cases inadequate. i'm thinking about minors.
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there's lack of evidence in many cases. i'm thinking about all the cases of returning foreign fighters. it's sometimes very difficult to bring charges against people who come back from syria, where it's clear from an intelligence point of view that that person went to syria and did not go to do sightseeing. nonetheless it's much more difficult bringing cases. one case was very interesting from california, went to fight in syria with isis, but there was no evidence to charge him with. he came back to the united states. no evidence to charge him with and basically he was approached to the traditional fbi sting operation and convinced to join
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pakistan. somebody that was not arrested because of what he did, fighting in syria, but what he was planning on doing, which was going to pakistan to join al qaeda. in that case the system worked out. but it's clear that in some cases there's problem with evidence. the cv aspect is not obviously the silver bullet. it's obviously something that the united states need to be strengthen. there's a lot of talk about it within the administration about it, but probably some more tangible resources should be put to it. i'm going to leave -- >> thank you, lorenzo. one of the things peter, fernando that you pick on, the return-foreign fighter phenomena is an issue. the public numbers are 40 in return to the united states. how does europe handle this in
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the scale and scope and numbers are much greater, can you turn some of them around to be defectors, they should also be criminally prosecuted and if there are any lessons the u.s. can glean from that? peter, to you. >> the reason i'm talking about this is that my team and i discovered about two and a half years ago that brits were going to syria to fight them. and not only were they doing that, they went there and maintained their online social media profile, they maintained twitter accounts, instagram and came possible to follow them, which we found exciting and interesting because they were almost posting dairies from a
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battlefield. we started broadening that out. we do have a database containing 700 online social med ace -- media of fighters in syria and iran. so we have a pretty good and pretty comprehensive idea of this population. what i'm saying now is greatly, you know, to a large extent based on what we have learned from this. on the number stuff, lorenzo is absolutely right. this is a phenomena that exceeds and surpasses anything that we have done before. in the case of europe which represents the 20% of the overall foreign-fighter population.
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smaller european countries are disproportionally affected. if you look at the distribution of foreign fighters across european countries -- of course the largest european countries are producing the smaller numbers. smaller countries affected, belgium, denmark, holland, norway and sweden. three points i want to talk about. one mo -- motivation. so first on the motivation, and it's very important to make the point that there's no foreign fighter -- at least not amongst the people that we have looked at. there are a number of different motivations and they have
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changed over time. it's perfectly fair to say that the people that went to syria and iraq in 2012, early 2013 were not necessary all committed extremists. they all had a very strong muslim identity. they went there because they feared that what was going on in syria was essentially, carried out by a conspiracy supported by isbalah. they were being told that if being muslim means anything to you at all, you now have to defend your brothers and sisters because america is not helping, the arabs are not helping. that was the principal recruitment narrative of the conflict. if you look you will see that throughout history and
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throughout different ideological movement the threat has been a mobilizer. in 2013-14 the narrative shifted and that should be linked with the rise of the so islamic state. a second peek happened about a year ago in the the summer of 2014 when the islamic state declared and had string of successes which motivated people who were interested in building. they were thinking, it is coming now, it is real, we have to go there. the second way of recruits arguably was more extreme in orientation than the first of recruits that i described before. in addition to that what we have also seen that since last year,
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since about august, the start of the western ad campaign, we have seen reemerger of the islam narratives that have not been that dominant even a year ago when we were doing field work. you almost had to remind them that they were hating the united states and allies, which was on ironic experience for someone who has been interviewing these people for 10-15 years. what's also great in what lorenzo said that, of course, specially for europeans geographcall make it easier for travel. it has been very easy for them to cross the border from turkey into syria.
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i can tell you we were doing work. every taxi driver could tell you where the foreign fighters were staying. you walk in and you say what group are you with, you say isis, that he give you isis uniform. all of this was happening in the open. they were not wanting to crack down out of fear that they maybe a retaliation against them. i hope something is changing about this now, but my fear is that the infrastructure of these groups is so embedded within that sanctuary that it becomes very, very hard for the turkey to do something about this in a sub tantive way. my second point is object online
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recruitment. we know that isis has a massive social media. in our experience at least as far as western europeans are concerned, really online recruitment aspect is not the most important one. well, it's not the slick videos. we've had slick videos from organizations for many, many years. also it's not the beheadings. i'm sure you all remember. what is new something that is not directly orchestrated by isis central. it is something that's more organic. what is new and that is a fact that's often neglected is that it is possible for one of the fighters in places like europe
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to talk to actual fighters in the battle zone. that's the most powerful aspect of the isis social media campaign. remember the guy from alabama who was going to somalia and had -- four or five years ago there was a lot of excitement because it was possible to tweet this guy in somalia and he would tweet back at you. now, what you now have are 600, 700, 800 talk to go people in paris, london, and it's their output that gets people exciting, and it's easy to see why. they make it personal for the
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wanna-be recruits. on one hand, they create identification. imagine you are a muslim in a deprived suburb of paris and you know that you don't really have lots of opportunities in french society. you look at pictures among the brothers being hero in that new society. you look at these pictures and what do you see? you see yourself, you see someone like yourself, someone who is now a hero in that society who is is incredibly successful and admired, yet who six months ago was someone like you with no prospects in european societies with no hope and a life of petty crime ahead of himself. that's an incredibly powerful
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moment where people see the pictures and start identifying, and then actually communicate with these people. it creates personal ties. we know that high-risk actism requires personal ties. more ties you need to have developed in order to get the commitment and loyalty. and speaking to a fighter enables exactly that. if you speak to a fighter, you delop a relationship, you develop trust, he makes time for you. you feel honored by the fact he makes time for you. after a month he asks you, now you have to come over. it's completely different from watching a video where an unanimous person tells you to come over. this is important about online
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-- they extend what lorenzo said. if it was all about the internet that wouldn't make sense at all because the internet is everywhere. if it was all about the internet the distribution of cases would be equal or even across countries. that's not because of the internet, that's because you have groups of people who knew each other, played if you believe with the each other and went to school together. you have one or two of them going over. that is being replicated, everywhere in europe you find the same pattern. it is still peer-to-peer
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networks. >> for american viewers, football is not the american football but soccer. >> the actual football. [laughs] >> my final point, i think that's really important, when i gave you the numbers at the beginning i should say these are not numbers for people currently on the ground on syria and iran. these are figures for everyone that has gone in the areas. 20-45% of the numbers of european countries that i talked about, 25 to 40% depending on country have already returned to european country. so the current foreign fighter population of britain, for
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example, is not 700. on the ground in syria and iraq are probably right now between 200-250, but 250 have already returned to the country. the question is, of course, what to do with them. in our observation, and again, this is informed by research on this issue, there are three principle groups, i call them the three d's. they are people who are necessarily motivated rather brutalized and may pose a risk to western societies even if they are not necessarily part of terrorist network. then there are the so-called dangerous. those are the people who are coming back established with military training, equipped with
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military training and motivation to carry out attacks in the west. depending on the stuff you believe, the percentage will be 10-25%. the third group are the so-called december -- disillusion. a lot of people thought they were joining a different kind of conflicts. a lot of people also went there long before the islamic faith was established, and these people right now are probably dominating amongst the people who are returned to european countries. i think for these people they need there need to be options rather than going to prison 20 to 30 years.
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my colleagues have been forthright in pushing european countries to establish reintegration programs for people who believe they've made a mistake. it's something that can be very tough, but it actually allows for reentig ration for people back into the societies. so you have three different groups. disillusion and dangerous. i think right now by far the largest group is a fourth group which i call the undecided. a lot of people have returned and it's not clear at all yet what kinds of things they will do in the long-term. and this shouldn't surprise us. this is my final remark now. this will play out over long period of time. if afghanistan in 1980s is the
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correct analogy, you have to accept that this will be a threat that will be with us for probably a generation to come. 9/11 happened in 2001, it can be traced back to 1980s in afghanistan. it happened over a decade. i think there will be stuff happening in decades time that goes back. osama bin laden started career as a foreign fighter. at tend of the afghanistan conflict he had not decided i will become the international terrorist. it took him a few years to figure out. he did services in 1990. he had not exactly figured out the game plan for the next 10-20 years in 1989. and so i think it is the same for a lot of the foreign
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fighters that have returned to their home countries. they haven't decided what they are going to do but they are keeping their options open. and the final, final remark is that the huge problem for lots of european countries is precisely what lorenzo pointed out namely capacity. a lot of these smaller european countries are completely overwhelmed by the numbers of people who have gone and come back and they need reintegration programs and are amongst the strongest advocates because they say that a pure security response is not going to be able to do the trick because they cannot build up the necessary capacity to deal with this. it's not about being nice to terrorist, it's essential in order to enable the security of to do their job.
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>> thank you. a lot of items you raised that i think warrant some goodies cushion among the panel. i'll save my questions. fernando, maybe you can take us in a case that you look at spain a little bit and what those impolitic cases may or may not mean more broadly for europe and the united states states and others. >> thank you very much. yes, i will say something. i will provide document with respect to spain, also a few commands. first of all, thank you very much for having me here today. on behalf of myself and do institute, we work on that
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particular issues. and it is just a pleasure to join you frank and peter, but also today i i have an opportuny to congratulate the george washington university for having you and you and you for leading this new program on extremism here. now the year before it all started in syria is the year 2010. the number of muslims in the world were estimated at 1,600,000,000, you will says thousand -- 1.6 billion, you say here in the u.s. around -- around 20 million were
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living in the west -- in western europe. that means 1.25%. 1.25%. and yet -- i'm using the data provided by the institute early this year but can be easily updated but for you to have a precise reference. individuals nationals in western europe made the trip -- or tried to make the trip for their countries to syria and iraq. that means that on the one hand we have about 25% of europeans among all those who mobilize
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foreign fighters in syria and iraq. on the other hand, that figure means that europeans are at least 16 times overrepresented among foreign tourist fighters with respect to those coming from other regions in the world. so to some extent we have -- they're in syria and iraq but a problem inside within europe. it's connected with accommodation of muslims in our societies. it is easy to reach middle east
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from europe. this percent amazing representation of europeans. something seriously is happening within our societies and phenomena among foreign fighters is but one. i prefer to -- lorenzo knows this, i prefer to use jahadi mobilization which included phenomena foreign fighters plus those who had been radicalized because of iraq and syria conflict, including individuals arrested and so and and so forth. they are just part of the amazing extraordinary presented
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femme onlyna jahadi's mobilization which is taking place in western europe since 201 -- 2011. now western europe is not uniformly affected by this phenomena. the big ohs countries are not providing foreign fighters, nor it is true that those european countries having a larger proportion of muslims with respect to the total among population are more affected. two european member states where you have the largest proportion of muslims with respect to the toal -- total population. you have cases of
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radicalization. turkish population list -- we don't have a problem with those. where is it that we have a problem? we have a problem mainly in belgium, frank, germany, netherlands, u.k., finland. i didn't mention ialy. i -- italy. i didn't mention spain. big countries. so what is it that those countries i just mentioned, what is it that they have in common of interest for our analysis
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today? what those countries have in common and different from italy and spain, poland, you name it, the vast majority of muslims living in those countries are second and first generations. in my country in lor -- lor -- lorenzo's who are -- [laughs] >> he was happy about the team losing the games. [laughs] >> sorry about that. yeah, this is private information. [laughs] >> so those countries -- those countries had populations made
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out basically of second and third -- basically of second generations. not the case in spain. second generations are now emerging, are now coming. but just now. it has nothing to do with the other countries, so this is a very important issue to take into account. if we -- if we connect this fact -- by the way, how interesting, this association between jahadi mobilization and second generations can even do corroborated with the case of
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spain, surprisingly. spain is not among those countries most affected, but having a look at over 100 individuals arrested since 2012 in connections with radicalizing networks related to the syria syria-iraq conflict, we find that already more than half are spanish, spaniards. this is a sharp contrast with the previous period between 1996 and 2012 where the number of individuals born in spain and convicted for offenses were less than 5%. now it is over half.
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and you know, 77% of all those coming from the only two cities in spain where we have a large muslim community made out of mainly second generation. surrounded by moroccan territory. this is an interesting issue. of course, what we are seeing in spain and this is particular interest, we compare with the situation, some stay in italy. i recently read an article of lorenzo that although you don't have access to the data yet on all the individuals that you will need to be more precise
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that in spain we are getting to closure. there was only one individual. all the ohs -- others were individuals who came to spain over 21. that was when europe was expecting a homeground, the big one that we got not home ground. now, if we -- if we have this in mind, this association between jahadi's mobilization and second generations and at the same time, at the same time we pay
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attention to the remarkable diversity of social economic backgrounds among those foreign fighters from europe, among those who have been arrested in european countries over the past years, i mean, they started from all sorts of social economic backgrounds. and if at all differences when we use data, what differences tend to show are simply differences with respect to the place, the muslim communities have in the national socialist structure. and frank is not the same as the united kingdom. not denmark is the same as the neverlands or belgium. in the case of spain, we have among all those arrested, among
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those, we have university colleges looking at people. we have individuals who are businessmen. they have their small businesses. this is not as simple as that. certainly the evolution of this phenomena as we can see in the case of spain it is providing evidence of importance transformation taking place, taking place in european union with european union countries where the second generation is now emerging, is now emerging. see, for instance, between
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1996-2012 in spain we had no single woman convicted. now after 2013, 13.5% of those arrested are women. in the previous period, the individuals who were arrested at age between 25-39. now between 20-34. between 1996-2013 in spain we only have 1.5% cases of convert among all those convicted for offenses. now, we have 13% of converts
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among all those over 100 individuals arrested in connection with radicalization and equipment network linked to syria and iraq. so what all this is suggesting the connection with second generation, diversity, we cannot explain things on education level and so on, but we still have a particular issue with problems where second generation is predominant. we have -- we have a generalized identity conflict affecting important sentiments of second generation muslim people living
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in europe, and it is known how migrant dye can he -- can be ina situation that more likely than not permits ambiguous identities. we might resolve the conflict depends heavily on social norms and background. it is within those things -- available roots are provided to the individual, but those
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muslims having this identity conflict see as one possible way out that jahadi offer of identity, and this offer when coming from al qaeda or coming from islamic state, they associate violence. it's not only making muslim identity an exclusive one, it's associating violence with identity. i tell you about people, when you interview them, you know, i wasn't feeling part of france. i was born there, my parents brought me to italy when i was
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there but i wasn't feeling french or italian. pakistan -- and one day, one day this man came to my can you cir. your nation is not france. your nation is the nation of islam. i'm going to tell you the nation of islam is not -- is not promoted by the organization of islamic, it is promoted worldwide for the media. but al qaeda today is asking people just come to join us in
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the underground, you're family, to become a member of the an organization who is facing difficulties, maybe you think about coming to german. there's people telling you, hey, come join us, you want to fight, do so. you want to join our hospitals, come to join our now society. so this -- we have a problem with these people. these people and societies, and your families, families are often -- the circle is making
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people move to radicalization. we speak often about schools, we speak often but we are families. it is provided to these people to solve conflict between the identity and the norms that the parents -- particularly the father tries to maintain within the family and the norms outside the house, at the school, the university, groups, and so on. >> fernando, i hate to do this but i want to make sure we have time for q and a. >> i just -- my very last point about issue about networks. critically, important one.
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a lot of people are out there speaking of social media, lone actors. i'm going to give you data concerning those individuals. again, arrested in spain for involvement with radicalization and recruitment linkage to syria and iraq. 90.3% of all of them initiated the process in the company of others and completed the process throughout a series of stages involves face-to-face interaction. it is often the case that they change the living place to complete the process. so lone actors are less than 10%
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that lorenzo already pointed out, in six out of every ten cases they -- they become involved in a network which was activated by individuals who in the past were in guantanamo or who were charged by not convicted or the police known that were involved, the judges thought there was no evidence with the legislation in those days, not with the legislation that we have now. it was not an offense to go to afghanistan to be trained by al qaeda. in some countries it is not an offense. in my country it is now an offense, still not in all the european member states. and not all of them are being
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equally aggressive. some cases just spain or italy for that matter, not necessarily among those affects the security forces are being more aggressive than in other countries. how can did it take to belgium to consider that they had a huge problem? just look at the periods from report is offering in the most recent report. my very last point maybe instead of thinking that all that much about country and isis and so on, we have to think about actions, to make sure to facilitate muslims in europe to understand that their ie ten --
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are compatibles. in that case we have to counter islamic state and jahadis narrative. those are not islamic groups. but the challenge they pose to the social in our societies about different kind than violent one, it is in my opinion equally serious. >> fernando, thank you very much for not only a sobering picture in terms of stat itics, you left with an important point, and while we have a number of stat -- statistics they give a scope.
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it's one that i think all of our countries are still grappling. i think you heard from all three speakers that it's not as simple as finding a simple profile. ill argue, however, that the single common deno,no,-- ideoloy stupid. we need to counter ideological of the adversary negatives. i would like to get to what we think some of these solutions are. and lorenzo, i don't want to disagree with your point because you're doing phenomenal research, but the u.s. numbers are hitting a -- a up tempo that we had not seen at any other
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time since 9/1 #. i-- 9/11. we're talking 60. 60 individuals attempt to go -- attempting to travel overseas. i think you are seeing inflation. we sometimes overcomplicate matters in terms of trying to figure out group to group to group. at the end of the day it's the narrative. 60 may seem small burms but but-numbers but it's actually big numbers. i'll be curious as to what the group thinks about prescribing solutions.
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the u.k. has done an about 180-degree change. whatever you want to refer to it. what lessons can we be gleaning right here. there's one difference in enabling law enforcement to ensuring that they have the tools to get the job done, and they need those tools. what are some of the steps that we can take to try to get ahead of the curb. we'll start with the speaking order. we'll start with you lorenzo and peter and then fernando. at the end of the day even if a group doesn't spell violence, should we be addressing those? start with you. >> sure. a very complex issue as we saw, we saw different aspects from a
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lodgist approach. obviously the solutions are equally complex and diverse. i think we touched on a lot of them. i think peter touched upon it with his not so criticism of turkey. i think that has been thean i i- enabling factor. there were still debating, somalia, mali, pakistan. sure, there's a lot of symbolism . somalía. a political piece there and complex of solving the conflict
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there, which is crucial. we touched on the second aspect which is capacity building. and i think peter was saying it was an issue in the smaller countries. belgium, netherlands. very tiny. but i think etch in -- even in larger countries it's a matter of capacity. when the french government introduced series of solutions through -- some of them were politically motivated. hiring almost 3,000 agents of what is one of the largest forces in europe and in the western world which is france. it is a matter of capacity.
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in all western countries the -- they were known to law enforcement. that goes to london in 2005. the person was known but there are obviously some legal issues. it doesn't warrant criminal action and it shouldn't in democratic society. it's a matter of capacity. you have to make a judgment call to tier 1, tier 2 and that's what happened in paris. they deemed to be a three. one of them was back from yemen. not a priority anymore. both judgment calls are difficult to make, sometimes correct and sometimes incorrect. it's very unfair to put the
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burden on law enforcement. that's the second most important thing. there's the cv aspect. all three of us discussed both kind of measures even when resources seen. there's a variety of measures. the one-on-one interventions. so what do you do with the 18-year-old radicalizing? sure, you can monitor, law enforcement tactics but introduce a member. there are obviously the cv is
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very complex underdefined. everybody gives it a different meaning. whether we're talking about creating a positive narrative or what we stand for or undermining the narrative that comes to mind. ..
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>> let me if i can ask our panel to be as brief as they can simply because i want to make sure we have time for the audience to ask questions as well. >> here's the bucket list. i think a lot of the measures that are needed outlined in u.n. security council resolution 2178 which actually had the privilege to work on with ambassador power and others. those are mostly punitive measures which are necessary. it's also bad information exchange. what i want to grab expand on all of it is to see the aspect. -- cve. you need to have a lot of projects and smaller things that need to be done, reintegrareintegra tion programs, exit programs which
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existing european countries which are often underfunded, intervention programs, reintegration programs. i think in every european country they should be a hotline that parents can call that is not answered by the police the 99% of parents do not want the kids to go to syria and i. but they are not calling the police because as much as they don't want their kids to die they also don't want them to go to prison for 20 years. so they do crazy things in order to prevent their kids from going, often the wrong thing, sometimes things that prompted them to go. it would be useful in every country to have a place where people can call and get the best professional advice in order to have, handled the case without necessarily causing a security issue. i think that would be one concrete thing that could be done. we need to work not necessarily on creating more government led top 10 narratives on the
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internet. that's already existing. it's a drop in the bucket. if we do four times that it's going to be more jobs in the bucket. we have to start thinking about it carefully, think about how we can galvanize a grass-roots bottom-up movement that actually confronts the grass-roots bottom-up movement that is the islamic state. also, and this gets me to the final two points, as important counter narratives are, it essentially pr. are substantive issues that are underlying this phenomenon. the first issue is that the islamic state for long time seem to be winning. when my colleagues once told me that the secret of their success is they are success. as long as the islamic state seems to have momentum, as long as it seems to be representing some new kind of caliphate people would be excited about it. the fact, for the past few much
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islamic state has not been able to expand its territory as much of last summer has had an effect on recruitment. i think events on the ground -- people think about going, so that's important the other aspect that is important is that in europe the unfortunate truth that i need to tell to my european compatriots is that we have not been successful in establishing inclusive national identities in a way in which, for example, it is possible to be a hyphenated american and be perfectly content and happy being part of this nation and being committed and loyal to the nation. at the same time being proud of their ethnic and religious origin and identity. i don't think we have succeeded that, we have succeeded that in
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europe and much of more needs to happen from both sides. a willingness to integrate my minority's but also from the majority population and offer to actually get accepted into europe, and society as a whole part of european societies which is not always the case. it is precisely that lack of feeling of belonging that facilitates inclusion in jihadists movements but also to travel abroad. that is a long-term thing but that also needs to happen. >> thank you peter. one point she raised i just want to recognize kerry who was leading families of 9/11 but she also did a number of documentaries i think had a significant role ironically on zarqawi's himself in terms of the attack on the jordanian wedding. that is the sort of thing we need to multiply. so thank you for joining us.
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fernando, briefly because i want to make sure we have time for questions. >> following on what peter just said, this quote from the recent, the previous big issue, the islamic state. they have in territories in the revival of the caliphate gave each individual muslim a complete and tangible entity to satisfy his natural desire for belonging. they know what this is what they have to do. when thinking about -- [inaudible] i agree with this nonpolice hotline. absolutely. in the cases i know, yes, the
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families end up calling the police. wind the sons or daughters are on the way to syria and iraq were already there. it's like to we have any stigma to it is before, so this nonpolice line is a great idea, in my opinion. it should be part of security approach, it has to be adopted to the new expressions of global jihad. it has to be compounded with effective international cooperation. this country needs strong cooperation. spanish moroccan cooperation --
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[inaudible] to the point that when the moroccan authorities are going to conduct operations, if they have, if they think that they might be a direct or indirect spanish connection, they call, and ahead goes and joins the command, the counterterrorism command of the moroccan police to follow the event, and to be, from the very first moment on what is going on. but not all countries, within
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the european union they might complain more about the cooperation with other european member union states, in cooperation with morocco. if only because, not all european union member states have the same legal framework and that creates trouble. >> i know i'm being unfair to but i need to make sure our audience, one thing if you want to give up because it is important, i mean, i think we do need to think creatively about some of these initiatives. the flipside is that is there is a law and order and there is a deterrent effect. the old saying don't do the crime if you can't do the time. at the end of the day we've got to think creatively but we also need to recognize that terrorist activity in the u.s. just dedicates in boston where police officer turned in his own son.
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which was one of the most difficult dilemmas to go through. but i want to give time for some q&a. i've got lots of hands here. please be real quick into questions. identify yourself and what will do is try to wrap them and giving into lightning round. so we will do three or four questions. here, there, favoritism, there and there. please identify yourself. [inaudible] >> my name is john, i'm a retired navy intelligence officer, and while i'm all for effective use of military and law enforcement in conflicts, there's another dimension that i haven't heard mentioned here, and that's diplomacy. particularly diplomacy involving
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countries that are most involved. this could be generalized but i want to make a very specific -- turkey. turkey is almost all muslim and the sunnis, shiites, salahis. the turks know muslim identity is probably better than anybody else associated and other a member of nato. and like any other country including all of ours, they are mainly concerned with border security and self-defense. just in the past week they have tremendously increased the border security. but what i haven't heard is any mention of either intellectual import or cooperation between our groups and the turkish authorities. >> that's a great question. we talk a lot about that in terms of useu five highs
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extending beyond that but i think turkey is, i also would suggest they have a live lived o their obligations until recently in this case that's a great question and if great question and i care what others think. so jerome. become we'll do this quickly get if you can wait for the mic we will say the questions until the end. >> mark nicholson, the american institute. i like to address my question -- strange case of german which has had only one significant attack. whether or not that is indicative of an anything or if that is a fluke or something we should be considering? >> right ear and then we had a question that there.
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>> my question is not understand of her i could statement about not really meaning -- needing more, let initiative. they're still a huge role for government to look at the u.s. government in particular how can the u.s. government help spur spontaneous community uprisings towards the better good as far as countering the three eyes that have been discussed? >> thank you. one more here and then we'll have to wrap it up. >> thank you. ron taylor, senior fellow here at the center. my question is, if it is simple or not but nothing exist in isolation these days and that's true in europe. it was a great presentation among all of you. capacity building, that's a
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solution. the way he described it should so many good solutions but capacity takes will, money and effective solutions. will is tough. you talked about grassroots. peter, your suggestion with a lot about will, grassroots. today with the situation in greece, the situation with eu, can you muster to take on something like this? and can you muster the money? how is the situation with muslims migrating from the different countries across the mediterranean into the mediterranean coastal states in great numbers over the last couple of years, particularly -- [inaudible] i'm going to see the dynamics. >> the tyranny of time require iv director we're starting with you, peter. three bunch of questions. i promised to get us out of here in three minutes.
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[laughter] >> i think because of that i'm not going, i'm only going -- >> turkey. go to turkey. >> i'm going to answer that question. i think ideally that would be what needs to happen. in reality, however, it's been very clear that turkey, i do want to exaggerate this, but has been somewhat ambiguous about cooperating with its western allies. [inaudible] >> well, if you put yourself into present or to want shoes you understand why. it's very obvious -- present f t erdogan. there are 1 million refugees inside of turkey. if he starts cracking down on all of visibility consequences for turkey and he wants to protect his country
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understandably but this has led to a situation where in many cases, and we witnessed it with our own eyes, they have turned a blind eye to the activity of some of these groups within their territory. if they are actually closing the border more effectively, and that remains to be seen, that would make a big difference. the second consideration very briefly for president erdogan is for him the islamic state is not the only enemy. he has the second enemy which are the kurds. and from his perspective that is in the urgent threat and the islamic state because the kurds reclaiming a third of his country's territory. so if he is now bombing positions within syria, and the best possible outcome would be for both sides because he bombing the kurds as well as the islamic state, both sides will be weakened equally which was back to square one of the worst ua one of the worst
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possible outcome would actually be, the kurds being weekend more than the islamic state which indirectly means that the islamic state exactly going to be strengthened i the turkish intervention and will have to see how that plays out. >> history though while it may not repeat itself it rhymes. the saudi misguidedly testily started hitting their own kingdom to address it and pakistan which are briefly, lorenzo. >> what's the role in the migration issue. what can be done? i think we've had since -- i think i saw -- were the authors of a report which i was called build a modern most network was basically are advocating for recruiting the cold war strategy of the u.s. government had in building up indigenous voices against communism in a variety of countries and re-creating in
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different way than narrative coming from al-qaeda 10 years ago. it's isis today. when it comes, so there's been of course a lot of efforts made, state department, the u.s. government with mixed results. it was not the same enthusiasm that existed and the same focus that existed 40, 50 years ago. domestically i think that's even more complicated. as it briefly earlier and he can shameless point to the report we put out last june, very underfunded disjointed effort that we see domestically here. it is engagement taken place with communities which is great for little follow-through, the resources going to the grassroots level that peter was advocating. migration, that is humongous issue that a lot of european countries. italy itself gets almost 2000 people on a daily basis, and mostly from libya.
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we have problems from a financial point of view in welcoming these people and had to check the background of these people. we just recently alleged perpetrators or supporters of the attack in tunis allegedly came illegal for ships. it is a major issue, and i think there's a gap in our resources better used at european union level. at the end of the day these people want to go to germany, the uk. that's a big internal, huge. >> fernando, you the last word. >> very quickly. i will try. the cooperation with turkey has been affected by turkey's calculation towards the regime. and only when they failed and the free syrian army is no
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longer there, they have these amazing nebulous, jihadists and on sloppy groups when they decide to change minds a little bit, -- salafi. turkey, the gateway for jihadists, for europe for middle east and south asia. from the '90s. to join an al-qaeda camp you had to go to istanbul and then into -- 10 years ago it was flight into turkey moving into syria and into iraq. turkey has had -- [inaudible] of tolerant towards this movement that is worth remembering to make things, istanbul was at the meeting point for the fighting group in addition to london when all the
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moroccan fighting group, when they lost in afghanistan. and i can take a bit more about our report on the person who was asked long time before the report arrived in spain on march 10, 2004, the day before the bombings. this report was not one individual who was part of the bombing that work, who was arrested by the turkish police on his way to afghanistan to an al-qaeda camp and released on just miner false. i've always had homeport is to address this issue of the local level, the community level, the families are convulsive to
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remember that not just -- [inaudible] may become people to that appeal of identities mixed with violence. we have the same problem. second generation, diaspora who saw this identity conflict by joining latino gangs. we have the same problems we have to act at this community level. [inaudible] interventions with families. really in the case of europe, families are segregated. those who come from morocco they tend to live together in the same neighborhood, the same areas that pakistan's as well. it's not all that difficult and
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not all that expensive. >> on that note let me thank you. before we depart, please take a moment to thank our fascinating analyst at we could have gone on for many more hours. [applause] let me just say on a personal note stay tuned, you're going to see more great work, out of lorenzo and his team, and thank you for joining us today, so thank you. [inaudible conversations]
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>> justice department inspector general michael horowitz testifies about a recent letter he and a coalition of inspector general's road to the senate judiciary committee asking for legislative action following the justice department denying his request for documents. others talked about how the justice department decision could have negatively affected broader oversight efforts both in and out of the federal government. this was part of the senate judiciary committee oversight hearing of the justice department yesterday.
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>> [inaudible conversations] >> before the two of us give our opening statements i've been told that there are some people from inspector general offices. if, unlike of all the people that are igs or acting igs to please stand. i want to thank you, folks for doing the job you do of making sure that the laws are faithfully executed. we spend money according to laws. thank you very much for your hard work.
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you are a very important part of government being responsible. thank you for being here. >> the inspector general's act of 1978 create inspectors general as independent and objective units when the executive branch. since then the american taxpayers have relie relied on s teacher at three important path. one, conduct audits and investigations of agency programs. two, to promote the integrity efficiency and effectiveness of programs. and three, to keep congress and agency heads fully informed about program operations, deficiencies and the need for corrective action. to help igs achieve these goals section six eight of the hijacked authorizes inspectors general to access quote-unquote all records belonging to their respective agencies. but two weeks ago the justice department's office of legal
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counsel issued a legal opinion claiming that that word all those not actually mean all. today we will examine how this opinion is hindering the work of the justice department inspector general and threaten all of inspector general. vig act means what it says. the department of justice ig is legally entitled to all department records, period. if inspector general teams a document relative to his job, to do his job, then the agency should turn it over immediately without hesitation or review. according to the department justice of doctor general, the department did exactly that prior to 2010. however, in 2010 the federal bureau of investigation suddenly changed that practice after the ig uncovered some embarrassing
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information about the fbi's misuse of exigent letters. the fbi claimed it had the right to refuse to provide ig information, and over a dozen categories including information related to wiretaps, grand jury and consumer credit. the fbi claimed it attorneys would review material first and then have the attorney general or deputy attorney general decide what could be released to the ig. congress did not intend to great this sort of litigation style standoff inside a department. it is a waste of time and money for two divisions of the same government department to be fighting over access to the department own records. the department current practice is exactly the opposite of what the law envisions. under the law and inspector general must be independent, because agencies cannot be
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trusted to investigate themselves. if igs had asked for permission from senior leadership, they would be, would not be truly independent. the ig act does not allow the attorney general, not the fbi, to prohibit the inspector general from carrying out for completing an investigation, but only in certain limited circumstances. from that ex ord is devastating it must be done in writing to the ig. and the ig must forward written notice to congress. the fbi would have us believe that, this is what they would have us believe, that instead of written notice been required to block an ig investigation, they need written permission to comply with an investigation. this is simply not how the law was designed to work. the ig testified to congress multiple times about these
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problems since taking office 2012. so congress took action to resolve the disputed we bolded and underlined section 6(a) of the ig act that assures access to records. not literally but section 218 at this year's justice department appropriations act declared that no fun should be used to deny the ig, access to all records. section 218 also directed the inspector general to report to congress in five days whenever there was a failure to comply with this requirement. now, in february and march alone we received four of those reported that the fbi refused to comply. i wrote to the fbi twice about these notices and still have not received answers to most questions. so, mr. kevin perkins, they fbi assistant deputy director easy to account for these matters. and also here is mr. michael horowitz, inspector general of
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the justice department. i would like to find out from these two witnesses what the practice of the fbi was prior to 2010 and whether that practice complied with the procedures that the olc opinion that argues is mandatory. because we've got to realize the fbi can't be above the law. it has an obligation to comply not only with the inspector general act but also with respect, with the restriction congress places on appropriations. that means fbi employees cannot legally be spend their time with holding and reviewing documents before providing them to the ig. however, this is exactly what the fbi has been doing. and now the olc opinion actually endorses that practice. olc needed 60 pages of tortured logic to support its claim that need the ig act nor section 218 means what it actually says. not surprisingly last thursday the appropriations committee
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offers of section 218 wrote a joint letter to the deputy attorney general that said the following -- quote the olc's interpretation of section 218 and the subsequent conclusion of our committees intention is wrong. for olc duty, our intentions as anything other than supporting the oig's right to gain full access to time and complete information is disconcerting. we expect the department and all of its agents fully comply with section 218, and to provide a witchy with full and immediate access to all records, pockets under the material in accordance with section 6(a) of the ig act. end of quote. now, that's about as clear a statement as you can get and the intent of the ig act is equally clear. but, unfortunately, only a few pages of the olc's 60 page
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opinion actually discusses the ig act. instead most of the opinion, 46 pages, analyzes just three legal provisions whose a general limitation on disclosure allegedly override the laws specific promise of inspector general access. those three provisions relate to title iii wiretap, title six e. grand jury and fair credit reporting to its otherwise so much ink was spilled on just these three provisions given that the fbi has cited nearly a dozen provisions and withholding records from the ig. there are dozens if not hundreds of generally applicable nondisclosure provisions throughout the u.s. code that could also limit inspector general access under the tortured logic of olc opinion. that opinion argues that
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nondisclosure statutes like these, the ig act unless congress makes it extra clear that they don't. i specifically mentioning the statute by name in the ig act. think about that for a moment. according to the olc the ig act would have to mention each and every nondisclosure statute by name before doj we believe that congress really meant to ensure access to all records. that's simply unworkable. we don't even have a definitive list of nondisclosure statutes that might need to be listed. they congressional research service is studying the question at my request, but listing specific exemptions to dozens or hundreds of nondisclosure statutes would be too unwieldy. that's why we use the word all to cover everything without having to list each potential
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exception. it really is that simple. members should be able to ask the office of legal counsel about this and many other questions with opinions. unfortunately, now the department refused to provide a witness from olc today in response to the invitation, the department said ahead of olc, mr. karl thompson is out of the country today. however, personnel from inspectors general from across the country are either as you have seen to listen to this and to help us understand this. i thank all of you for joining us. in mr. thompson's absence the committee as doj to provide an alternative which is from his office. however, the department claimed that it did not have enough time to prepare for this test mode after 14 months of working on this opinion, since may 2014, the office was not ready to
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discuss it publicly. that's very astonishing. i also invite the deputy attorney general to testify about procedures she announced in may to approve the ig's access to records. when she was being confirmed i asked it should appear before the congress. all of these people say yes. i think now the out tuesday maybe they will appear. fortas out of the olc opinion she updated these proceedings to complied with that opinion. however, these new procedures add further delay and uncertainty to the situation. the committee notified her of the same with plenty of advance notice and even mood of the original date from last week to this week. unfortunately however the department said she was unavailable to testify. so mr. carlos uriarte, and associate deputy attorney general is here to take our questions, and i thank you for coming. i also have to to testify, dave
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smith, acting inspector general of the commerce department. because of that department has followed the olc opinion and denied access to that inspector general. this is a sign of things to come in terms of effective olc opinion will have for igs to access documents across government. and we have three witnesses on our second panel to discuss implications of the penny. paul light, new york university. danielle brian, budget and government oversight, brian miller, former ig government services administration. i want to thank all of them for joining us. before i go on senator leahy i want you to know that the senator leahy and i might have some differences of opinion on issues he for the congress, but when it comes to his anti-working together on oversight i think we are hand in glove. and i think particularly i thank
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him for help when he was chairman of the committee to make amendments to the false claims act that need to be made for congress to do its oversight, and other issues as well. thank you, senator leahy. >> thank you. sometimes the press overlooks the fact, or maybe the public overlooks the fact the press covers of this know these things, but -- [inaudible] >> tend to overlook the fact that republicans and democrats actually do work together on a number of things. in this body as senator grassley and i have on -- >> while you're doing your statement, we will go across the hall and vote with finance on something they've got an executive session. they can't tell me when to dump spent as soon as he is out of the room i'm just going to pass a whole lot of stuff.
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[laughter] >> actually senator grassley and i have done things on transparency and accountability for a long line time. i'm glad we're doing that today. for the past two weeks i thought to protect our committees of jurisdiction over what is a cornerstone transparency law, previous information act. event attempts to weaken the freedom of information act and i fought against the. and we've got a lot of bipartisan, senator cornyn of the texas, assistant republican leader and i have worked very closely on this. we have to ensure our open government laws are strong and protected but we don't hold departments accountable. i've taken this position weather we've had republican or democratic administrations. we are an amazing country.
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in the village of accountability and makes us a stronger and better country. inspectors general are central to this nation and i applaud all who are here today. let you work long hours , that you work long hours. i need some of you on occasion. i applaud the work to be. you play a crucial role in ensuring that federal agencies and their employees operate efficiently, effectively and within the scope of the law. for no other agency, this watchdog role more important and for the department of justice, in the department of justice. protect our privacy, our liberties, our constitutional rights. they have have access to information, documents necessary to conduct program reviews,
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audits and investigations. but that has been as refer to your a long-standing dispute between doj and its inspector general over access to grand jury and other types of investigative material. that's block was once a free flow of information. in a previous life i worked with rangers. i understand the question of secrecy but i understand the importance. in several vitally important program reviews the ig had to fight for access to documents. i think this dispute impeded the igs review of bulk collection of americans phone records under section 215 of the patriot act. it's also get an on going to the drug enforcement administration bulk collection phone records for routine criminal investigations. the very first independent review of the program that was
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conducted in secret for decades both the democratic and republican administrations. to be an effective agency watchdog, the inspector general needs complete and full access to agency information. i want to thank deputy attorney general yates for her efforts to collaborate with inspector general horowitz will find irresolution. under the leadership of deputy attorney general yates we finally have an opinion, office of legal counsel clarifying its position. a new policy is the place to gt information flowing again but that's only a temporary solution. the doj could still withhold information under certain circumstances. i think we need a more permanent solution. one that ensures the igs have access to the records they need to do their job. and i will work closely with senator grassley to craft a
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legislative solution. i think the two of us can do that. icy senator cornyn this year, and i hope this doesn't bother recompetition on you in texas by crazy canuck just before you are giving your work on foia. [inaudible] >> okay. i woke up i hosted in the record, trent and doesn't mention we will -- at 10:30 a.m. vote has that been put off until 2:00. i'm told. [witnesses were sworn in] >> thank you. michael horowitz, the first witness, inspector general, department of justice. mr. kevin perkins who will speak after him, associate deputy director federal.
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of investigation. mr. carlos uriarte is an associate deputy attorney general, justice department. thank you. and lastly mr. david smith, acting inspector general, department of commerce. go ahead, mr. horowitz. >> thank you, mr. chairman, ranking member leahy, members of the committee. thank you for inviting me to testify today about the critical importance of inspector general access to information. and thank you for strong bipartisan support of the inspector general community. the problem of our access information is a relatively new one. prior to 2010 not at the justice department or the fbi questioned our legal authority to access all documents in its possession and we obtained grand jury wiretapped and credit information without legal objection and without the need for a legal opinion. indeed, it would be hard to imagine how we could conduct effective oversight of the fbi and dea and other law
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enforcement component if we were prohibited from revealing information like grand jury and wiretapped information that the agency's frequently used. the oig always handle such information with great care and we fully and completely comply with all statutes limiting the use and disclosure of such information to indeed we have been provided with access to some of the u.s. government's most sensitive information in order to conduct our oversight and has not been a single location in our 27 year history where we've been accused of mishandling such information. however, in 2010 fbi lawyers concluded that our office could not have legal access to such information despite its past practices by the fact that no laws had changed at the report also identified 10 of the categories of records where they believed we might not be entitled to as access. since that time office has faced
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numerous challenges to our access, to department records, seriously impacting our ability to conduct oversight. inmate 2014 deputy attorney general cole asked the office of legal counsel an opinion addressing the fbi's legal objections to our access to grand jury's, wiretapped and credit information. the pelosi issued its opinion two weeks ago and concluded the following. first, the inspector general act does not, does not empower our office to access grand jury wiretapped and credit information. second, office can only obtained such records if the disclosure exceptions listed in the grand jury wiretapped and credit laws permit inspector general access. third, in every instance, every instance a decision whether these disclosure exceptions apply will be made by department employees, not by the oig staff.
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finally, the department itself acknowledges there are circumstances where disclosure to the oig would not be permitted. the legal underpinning of the pelosi opinion represents jesus threat to not only my independence by québec of all inspector general. a hallmark of the ig act that inspector general are entitled to independent access to all information in an agency's possession has been pierced. for the first time since the ig act was passed in 1978, the word all in section -- section 6(a) in the ig act no longer means i'll and placing hd step in the position of deciding whether to grant an inspector general access information turns the principle of into thin oversight that is enshrined in the inspector general act on its back. additionally, we are concerned as a community that following
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this pelosi opinion agencies may object to producing other categories of records that are subject to nondisclosure provisions. indeed, we understand the preliminary research has a different hundreds of laws that contain similar restrictions in them. this potential uncertainty as to what information agency personnel can provide to inspector general's could result in their becoming less forthcoming with the igs because of concern they could be accused of improperly avoiding information. such a shift in mindset also could deter whistleblowers from directly providing information to inspector general because of concern that the agency may later claim that the disclosure was improper and use that decision to retaliate against whistleblower. the only means to address this threat to inspector general independence is for congress to promptly pass legislation that
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affirms the into thin the authority of inspectors general to access without delay all information and data in an agency's possession that an inspector general deems necessary to its oversight function. the legislation should unambiguously state won't be in the inspector general and community have long understood that no law restricting access information applies to inspector general and less about law expressly so states. and that such unrestricted inspector general access extends to all records available to the agency regardless of location or form. independent oversight by inspectors general make our government more effective and efficient. inspectors general have saved taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars since the inspector general act was passed in 1978.
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refusing, restricting or dealing and inspectors general independent access to records and information may lead to incomplete, inaccurate and significantly delayed findings and recommendations which in turn may prevent the agency from probably correcting serious problems and deprive congress uptime information regarding the agency's activities. it also making peter otherwise inhibit investigations and prosecutions related to agency programs and operations. on behalf of the council of inspectors general, 702 federal inspectors general, we look forward to working closely with this committee and with the congress on a legislative solution. i would be pleased at any questions that the committee may have. >> thank you for standing up for what the law requires. mr. kevin perkins.
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>> good morning chairman grassley, members of the committee. i'm pleased to appear before you today to discuss the fbi's efforts in ensuring that the inspector general has found access to records necessary to complete its reviews, audits, and investigations consistent with existing law. the fbi takes very seriously its obligation to enable the ig to conduct effective oversight of all of its activities, and all of our activities we been transparent with the department, inspector general and congress concerning the challenges presented i seemingly conflicted, conflicting statutory commands. and notwithstanding these challenges the fbi has provided nearly 400,000 pages of documents with 136,000 e-mails to the ig in the past year alone. these documents were produced in response to 118 document requests submitted by the oig to
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the fbi. which also contained an additional 343 subparts. during this same time the oh, gee initiated when you audits and over 30 investigations at the fbi. to fulfill the oig's request and those of the other oversight entities the fbi has dedicate almost a dozen individuals full-time to these tasks. the fbi and the oh, gee have worked cooperatively to expedite the igs access to materials consistent with the law. iin the past few months the past few months the fbi has also taken additional steps to ensure the oig received documents in a tiny manager specifically the fbi has moved document collection and production function back to the inspection division. since that time the fbi is consistent provided documents to the oig and advanced the requested deadlines. in addition the bureau is actively working to complete the
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one remaining aspect of the document requested no subject to a prior notification to congress under section 218 unconsolidated and for the continuing appropriations act. in that instance the ig has already received all requested e-mails and the majority of the 1325 attachments contained therein. but the final fortune of attachments slated to be delivered to the oig within the next week. so the fbi will completely eliminate all backlog of documents going to the ig. we remain committed to continue to work with congress and the oig to ensure that the ig has access to all information it requires to fulfill its essential oversight function of the department. more specifically we reiterate our commitment to work with the oig and members of congress on legislation that enables the department to comply with the law while providing the ig of the documents he needs as quickly as possible.
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thank you for the opportunity to appear here this morning and i'll be happy to answer any questions you may have. >> i appreciate all the statistics you gave us, but mathematically all of those don't equal all. mr. uriarte. >> good morning, chairman grassley, ranking member leahy and members of the committed at least appear today to discuss the department commit to ensuring the office of inspector general has time to access all records necessary to complete its reviews, audits and investigations at the department appreciate your commitment to guaranteeing the ig can effectively and efficiently fulfill its critical oversight functions. as attorney general lynch and deputy attorney general yates has taken sicily and unequivocally that department shares the belief that an effective, efficient and independent ig is absolutely critical to the functioning department of justice. notwithstanding our view that the ig should be able to obtain
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all of the information it was necessary to perform this important oversight role, the department has grappled with two different and potentially conflicting sets of statutory commands. on the one hand, congress enacted the inspector general act which grants each inspector general a right to access all records of the agency within its jurisdiction. on the other hand, congress passed statutes that regulate the disclosure of sensitive law enforcement information to protect individual rights to privacy and due process. to assist the department in resolving this complex question of statutory interpretation, in deputy attorney general jim cole requested a formal opinion from the office of legal counsel. at request focus on three specific statute that include stringent restrictions on disclosure. first, the federal wiretap act which restricts law enforcement and investigative officers from disclosing intercepted communication. second, rule sixe which
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restricts attorneys for the government from disclosing grand jury information. and third section 636 after putting -- fair credit reporting act which protects the commission pursuant to nation secure to the. since that time the department has continued to work with the ig to ensure that taxes it needs that stretched all component and agencies to provide the ig in a timely fashion all of the doctors needed to complete its reviews the extent permitted by law. in fact were unaware indication which the ig is sought access to grand jury or fcra mature and did not receive a. these three categories of information have come to very small minority of the overall nature of sought by the ig. since her appointment and followed her confirmation from deputy attorney general yates at the department have worked diligently to find a solution to these issues and we continue to work with the ig any genuine
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spirit of cooperation and collaboration to expedite its axis to the records it needs. any the completion of the pelosi opinion and april 2015 deputy attorney general yates issued a departmentwide memorandum to implement a new process to ensure that the ig probably receive wiretap grand jury and consumer credit information womewithin it who was mr. ford s completed but here's consistent within controlling statutes. the memorandum noted that the ig serve an important function in ensuring that the department of justice is one efficiently, effectively and with integrity, and the memorandum made clear to respond to the ig's request is of the highest priority. on july 23 the pelosi publishers numbering on the scope of inspector general act of the opinion concludes that three noticed that from the department to disclose confidential information to connect with me but not all of the igs investigations and reviews to the loc in opinion concludes it
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doesn't overwrite the limits on disclosure contained in the wiretap act ventricles and fcra. acid been explained the ig act does not refer to the statute or the information to protect and its broad general language does not contain sufficiently clear statement that congress intended to override the statute carefully crafted limitations. on july 27, deputy attorney general yates issued a department number in providing guidance consistent with the opinion. opinion. consistent with that opinion to. consistent with editing the guidance of director composed to provide wiretap and consumer equipment to directly to the ig in states that attorneys for the government as defined may provide grand jury material to the ig consistent with the restrictions in the grand jury rules. finally i want to reiterate a department leadership chose to believe that an effective, efficient and independent inspector general is absolutely critical to well functioning department of justice as i stated earlier the attorney general and deputy attorney general are committed to working
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with the ig and members of caucus of legislation that enables the department to comply with the law while ensuring the ig receives all the digest it needs to complete its reviews as quickly as possible. to that end without a number of constructive conversations with the doj ig of our social ensure he gets all the documents he requested by these conversations are ongoing we don't have a concrete legislative proposal that we can discuss with the committee in the near future. thank you for the opportunity to appear today and provide the department perspective on these important issues. >> take you very much. mr. david smith. >> co-chairman grassley, ranking member leahy, and members of this committee, i appreciate the opportunity to appear before you today regarding the recent opinion issued by the office of legal counsel and its impact on the billy of offices of inspector general to carry out our mission. in addition to the description aspect of general horowitz provided you of the chilling effects this thing will have on
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the work of igs, i want to provide you a specific example of how the opinion impacted my office even before the opinion was released. this is not just a justice oig problem note it's a limited just to law enforcement data. earlier this year we began an audit of international trade administration's enforcement and compliance business units efforts to ensure it was conducting quality and timely trade remedy determination is your. .. -- trade remedy determination's. ..


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