tv Senate Foreign Relations Hearing on Arms Export Control CSPAN August 16, 2019 4:06pm-5:48pm EDT
test if they don't have the background knowledge to understand the weekend passages in the first place it's not that they can't make and inferences, weaning inferences in their lives all the time . toddlers can make an inference but that's not the problem so much as their lack of knowledge and vocabulary to understand the passage that has been a big problem that has been overlooked. >> watched "after words" sunday at 9 pm eastern on tv on cspan2. >> next, i hearing on international defense cooperation and arms-control with testimony from r. clarke cooper, assistant secretary
of state orpolitical military affairs who spoke on the administration's decision to declare a state of emergency within arms sale to saudi arabia held by the senate foreign relations committee, this is an hour and 40 minutes . >> the committee will come to order. thank you all for being here today and today we're going to discuss the recent emergency declaration regarding us arms sales . the start we should recognize and acknowledge that the law contemplates and indeed requires a partnership between the executive branch and the legislative branch regarding arms sales. this committee plays an important role in conducting rigorous oversight of the issue. the same time, the law does grant the president authority to conduct sales without congressional approval in times of emergency. we'll be focusing on that issue. this hearing will focus on these rules andauthorities . we must consider the context for this latest declaration, namely active threats on iran
and its proxy and our partners capabilities to defend against those threats . arms export control gives the president authority to declare an emergency concerning arms and avoid the standard process of congressional notification area such presidential authority gave back more than 40 years to lessons learned from the october 1973 war in themiddle east . presidents of both parties have used emergency authority on five previous occasions and in each case addressed specific threats to us allies and did not alter the standing process of congressional review or have a meaningful impact on congress authority. i expect this latest declaration to continue that pattern and deserves review in thatexpectation . as with one of the previous emergency declarations, this declaration came in response to threats and attacks from the iranian regime.
mid-may, iran and its proxy as the associates, civilian airports and determination plants integral to the civilian population. additionally they shot down multiple us unmanned aircraft . over the weekend the iranian back forces from yemen and failed new or models of ballistic missiles unmanned aerial vehicles capable of taking deeper into arabia. around threats and actions towards the us and our allies have been clear. you must respond to such threats, protect our interests and support our allies as they defend themselves . neither thispresident nor congress , nor the american people see war with iran. i commend thepresident for his restraint in the face of numerous provocations . i was in the room as the president considered one of the most recent provocations and sought advice regarding. anyone, anyone who interprets
the president's reasonable forbearance is making a grave mistake . that is right for miscalculation and should not mistaken. attacking america, its interests or our partners when we do a strong defensive response, emergency declarations are useful, not just for the tangible militarycapabilities they transferred allies and partners but ourequally important for the messages they convey . these particular sales , in the context of and are colored by larger challenges with our saudi and iraqi partners including the war in yemen, the murder of jamal khashoggi and other diplomatic issues. i saw brought input from all quarters on a bipartisan basis to produce legislation will move us much more in the right direction . i want to thank all parties including my friends on the other side of the aisle who
been very helpful in trying to craft legislation that will get us to where we want to be. i've been impressed how carefully people have waived this issue and how impressed i've been with the attempts to reach legislation that balances the various aspects of this challenge. this legislation calls for a comprehensive review of the united states saudi relations as we conduct this review, we must discourage iran's aggression and must not leave saudi arabia vulnerable . our partners desperately need the these sales contemplated by other us training and advising initiatives to improve their ability to minimize collateral damage and deter aggression. we are here today because of the continuing threats by iran. as we move forward i urge us all to see measured solutions to these difficult challenges and avoid inadvertent
straightening our adversaries or damaging our partners and allies. i really believe this committee has done that and i hope we will continue to do that. i now witnesses for joining us today and look forward to hearing perspectives on these issues. with that i'm going to end this . >> like you mister chairman for holding this hearing to examine the appropriate role of congressional oversight on arms sales. it is important that any president and any administration and this one in particular respect congress as an equal branch of government and execute all laws in good faith. now, despite your pledge during your confirmation hearing to do just that mister cooper, and your commitment to be transparent and forthcoming with this committee , since you began your tenure the department has shown only disdain for congress and the laws that govern our arm export programs.
beyond that, you have balked at the idea that you shouldbe held accountable for your actions . on may 24, the secretary of state sent this committee 22 notifications for arms sales and transfers to saudi arabia and the united arab emirates. in a boilerplate memo the secretary argued unconditionally that these sales, some of which the committee had already cleared , were exempt the legally required 30 days of congressional review and action , claiming a sudden, emergency threat from iran. this administration has been unable to explain how precisely these sales respond to the supposed emergency area and at no time prior to may 24 to the administration once raised the sales as necessary to respond to the threat from iran.
let me be clear, around the house and will continue to pose a threat to us interests and allies in the region and i have and will continue to improve approve arms sales to allies that are in line with our long and short-term strategic interest and basic us principal of the basic respect for human life but if you look at these sales, it appears theadministration had other motives . indeed, when pressed, rather than explain how these sales will address a supposedly imminent threat from iran, you and other administration officials demurred and said the sales were for quote, sustaining the global supply chain or preventing quotes, loss of sale to p are competitors or maintaining us credibility as an arms supplier and so on. i look forward to hearing you explain today how would taking away american jobs and creating a saudi jobs program of manufacturing and eating panels for export for an
aircraft the saudi's don't own or operate respond to an emergency? how would sales that would not be delivered for many, many months immediately responded to an emergency? and if i have been asking for more than a year, how does the sale of precision guided munitions for use in yemen presumably when the same atrocious results in human suffering we've seen over the last four years respond to an emergency western mark mister cooper, you testified in a house hearing that the protracted process of congressional review was problematic for commercial sales. indeed, unless i misunderstood, you implied that i personally in exercising my rights as a ranking member of this committee was the reason you had to push through all 22 sales you as you well know, the process was projected because neither the secretary nor the department was willing or able to make a persuasive case that selling
precision guided bombs to saudi and the united arab emirates, the particular arms that i was holding would improve protection of yemeni civilians to saudi airstrikes or and the uae's human rights abuses in yemen. not only did the department not make a persuasive case, you made no case since last october. since jamal khashoggi was butchered on orders from the highest levels of the saudi government. mister chairman, my colleagues, the secretary of state's message to us is clear. congress and review arms sales, just don't take too long or ask questions, otherwise i'll just ignore the law and put you out ofthe process entirely . three weeks ago in a bipartisan fashion, thesenate made clear what it thought of the secretary of state . emergency sales by approving an unprecedented 22 resolutions of disapproval of
these sales. two weeks ago thiscommittee approved our bipartisan bill , the saudi arabia emergency are safe to prevent similar abuses of the emergency authority in the future. i hope the secretary of the administration appreciate the gravity of these actions and those to come. informal arms sale review process under the arms export control act has operated successfully fordecades . it works because successive administrations recognize that there is a health and consulting with the committee about any concerns that arise from the sale and they acted in good faith . simply put mister cooper, you and the secretary undermined this process. i urge you to take another look at the definition emergency and rethink your approach to engaging congress and dividing by the congressional oversight claimed during your hearing you would respect. >> thank you senator welcome secretary cooper . the floor is yours.
>> you very much mister chairman, mister ranking member and senators . in recent days, neutral shipping has beenattacked , providing an deterrent against hostile actions, this transfer lowers the risk of a broader conflict. the determination reflects the united states great concern with the growing escalation in the goal and its implication for the security of our wrens in the region. these words could precisely describe the context of the recent emergency certification this hearing has beenconvened to discuss, but they are actually from a state government announcement from 1984 . then as now, iran's revolutionary government threatens international shipping in the gulf through proxies, supported tax on american interests in the region, resulting in deaths of 241 american servicemembers in beirut. then as now, our partners
required the reassurance provided by an american demonstration of resolve and then as now, the administration took steps to deter a war, not to bring it closer. in his may 21 certification, secretary pompeo supported partners in the current crisis. these capabilities include aircraft support, munitions, logistics services, unmanned intelligence valence and reconnaissanceplatforms, training and advisory services . none of these constitute introductions offundamentally new capabilities to the region , none alter the military balance of power. none are of a nature or category congress had not previously reviewed and approved for these particular partners. the secretary's decision to exercise the statutory
authority under the arms export control act reflect the current threat from iran as well as the persistent threat. prior to making the certification, the administration saw in brief congress about an increased threat stream from iran relating to both us and partner interests throughout the region. these troubling explanatory indications and warnings from the iranianregime opted an increased us force posture in the region .events since the secretary certification serve to further validate the urgent need for these sales. iranian attacks on civilian crews partial partnerships and tankers in the sea of oman, continued attacks by the iranian back huthis including utilization in one case of a cruise missile against civilian commercial airports and the shootdown of the us broad maritime surveillance unmanned
surveillance system in airspace. these provocative actions mark a new evolution in the threat iran poses to the region, to our partners and to our own national security including the security of the hundreds of thousands of americans who live and work in the gulf states. and the current situation iran has implications not only in the gulf but in a geostrategic level. in today's world, our partnerships are vital and we must ensure our partners have the capability, the systems, the communications, the intelligence and the training to play their due role in maintaining stability and security in their region. our adversaries recognize the importance of our partnerships and have adopted person purposeful strategies of trying to disrupt them at all levels including in terms ofour security cooperation . for instance by seeking to
replace us as suppliers of choice. as such, the secretary certification should not be seen not only as a deterrent to iran , and reassurance to our partners, but it's also a rebuff to our competitors. before closing i would like to address some of the specific concerns that have been raised by this committee. many centers, many americans are concerned about the use of arms we provide overseas including in the context of the yemen civil war. these concernsare appropriate and we share them . from the beginning of the conflict you have maintained a political solution is urgently needed and supported the un led effort working towards that objective. america stands out from many foreign suppliers of defense material by premium we placed on ensuring that our capabilities are not contributing to gross
violations of human rights . we have worked with the saudi coalition over the course of its operations to reduce the occurrence of civilian casualties. our support in this regard has ranged from the provision of training on targeting mentoring and advising the coalition on best practices on lessons learned and on integrating complex data into a system that is specifically designed to reduce civilian casualties. we've also provided higher and legal training on the laws of armed conflict and have directly and regularly engaged with both military and political leadership on this topic. and finally, on the question of process, during both his confirmation and his own confirmation, the secretary and i did provide you our commitments on the congressional review process for arms sales. commitments stands. i value deeply ponders his role in the review of arms transfers , i take pride in
the depth and detail of the working relationship that we have with the committees in the course of this process. the secretary certification is not setting aside that process is the utilization of a long-standing category authority to respond to an urgent contingency. as such, i would like to take this opportunity to offer the value we place in our engagements with you on arms transfers and broadersecurity assistance issues . mister chairman, in 1984 ambassador explain president reagan certification to congress inthese words . our decisions were a prudent yet clear response to an escalating emergency which threatens out arabia and the goal. they satisfy clear military need and in addition we sent a political signal of both reassurance and deterrence. it was a measured response to promote regional stability and security.
mister chairman, mister ranking member, committee members, a political signal of both reassurance and deterrence, a measured response which promotes regional stability and security. these are the purposes for which president reagan certified an emergency 1984 and they are the purposes for which sent secretary pompeo invoked the same authority in may. thank you and i look forward to your questions today thank you mister cooper, do you have any current plans to invoke emergency on any sales in the immediate or near future? >> no mister chairman, the authority as you noted has been limited limited and applied very judiciously. this is the fifth application. the one i cited that was the most historically relevant was in 1984, the first application in 1979 has been judiciously applied across administrations of president carter to president trump. >> you made reference in your
testimony to the fact that there was a possibility always that someone like the saudi's, someone has very substantial financial resources returned to one of our two major competitors on the globe and actually wind up in their orbit, is that a substantial threat, do you believe? >> in an open forum i would hate to address that there's always the risk of near here adversaries looking for opportunities, not only in the gulf region but anywhere in the globe. i would say when we're talking about national security strategy and how we need near here adversaries, not limited to where they are geographically, that is a global concern . and back to the calculus on the emergency certification, it was a message on several levels. the immediate one was of
deterrence to iran, it was the reassurance as noted here to these partners but also a warning or a rebuff to near here adversaries to maybe we are looking to augment or see opportunity. >> thank you senator menendez. >> mister cooper, would you agree that an emergency usually denotes something imminent, something urgent? >> yes senator. >> so it wouldn't refer to something from years ago. >> i read this may 24 memo from the secretary multiple times and yet i can't seem to find where it lays out the emergency that these tales address . i see references the designations heading back to 1984, and hence from 2014 and general instability has been plaguing the region for years . years. but nowhere do i see where it says what the emergency is. so tell me, what is the state department operative definition of an emergency that you use the sales?
>> thank you senator. the statement you're referring to, the declaration is an unclassified document and your correct to note that there's context in their of this particular adversary and persistent stream as well as what their proxy are capable of doing. what actually equates to an emergency as it of where we are today is the current posture of iran and what was captivated there from an interagency aspect. >> let me stop you because i don't have unlimited time, answer my question . what is the definition of emergency that you used for the sales? >> a confluence of conditions that were assessed, required several tools by the administration including an increase of horse posture, this emergency declaration and application of sanctions. it equates to emergency status. >> none of that has changed, councilman from the present
to the past. the legal advisor's office opined on what an emergency is? >> the legal advisor's office assured and cleared on the statutory authority made available for the secretary to make -- >> in the legal advisor issue a legal opinion -mark. >> office was part of the process. >> i asked today to issue an opinion -mark. >> i'm not going to talk about the pre-decisional process on option. >> the issue an opinion, was the greatest additional process? either issued an opinion or not, that's not a question of a pre-decisional process, do you have an opinion in your possession -mark . >> center, the legal advisor's office participated in the application of the certification as noted by statute for the secretary
authority. >> you're not answering my question and i'm not going to let you get away with what you got away with in the house . either you have an opinion in which case i want to see it and if you don't have opinion that's written, then you ultimately invoke an emergency without a legally defined opinion of what emergency is.why did the state department never utter the words emergency to me or my staff in relation to any of these sales at any point prior to the secretary's emergency certification? >> senator, as you noted and others have noted on may 21 there was a classified briefing provided to congress . in that briefing there were details about the current posture with iran. this certification was an option as a tool including invocation of sanctions or application of sanctions. >> the word emergency mister cooper were never used. by anyone. from thesecretary of state all the way down . did you discuss the clarendon
emergency for these sales with the secretary before the secretary reached the senate and the house on may 21 and 22nd mark. >> senator, all the cases in the emergency including aces that were not included in the certification or part of our interagency process not only with the department normal review process. we provided options for the secretary to make hisdecision on application of the certification . >> did you discuss an emergency part of that -mark. >> again in an open forum i would say looking at intelligence community assessments -- >> i'm not asking. if you want to diverge declassified so you don't have to answer, i didn't ask you a classified question, i simply asked you did you declare the possibility of an emergency declaration prior to may 21 and 22nd and that's not classified. >> center, the calculus is inclusive of that data the data is not absent of
intelligence data so that is part of the consideration -- >> i'm not asking youabout intelligence data or how you came to the decision of emergency in this case, i'm simply asking you mister cooper , this is far from the transparency that you pledged to when you were before this committee area far from the transparency that led me to support your nomination . simple question. if you offer up an emergency as an option prior to may 21 and 22nd ? >> there were a number of considerations and tools made available the interagency inclusive of sanctions, this emergency and forced posture. any of those could have been applied for none ofthose that have been applied . >> did you discuss that emergency prior to may 21 and 22nd . >> brett posture is assessed before may 21.
we don't stop assessing. >> iran has been acontinuing threat posture, but the honest . >> your unwillingness leads to a total lack of transparency and is insulting to the senate when the secretary was before us, the day before you ultimately made this decision and never mentioned in front of 100 united states senators that there was going to be an emergency declaration. i find that overwhelmingly amazing i believe that all of a sudden an emergency came up right after we were. preposterous. >> the secretary cooper, you started to mention the word uptick. was the assessment by yourself and others believe that there wasn't uptick in hostility -mark. >> in a general sense in this open forum there was a shift in posture acquired a number of tools for the administration inclusive of
this declaration to be applied. >> and there was a concern that were there was a strike or hostility of some kind that was imminent. >> that is correct in a very general sense. >> would you consider imminent hostility or strike an emergency? >> correct. >> i want to change the subject, switch gears andtalk about the indo specific . december 31, the president signed into law the markey reassurance act and section 209b of are you state the president should conduct regular transfers on defense article to taiwan that are tailored to meet the existing and likely future. >> on the people's republic of china including supporting efforts of taiwan to develop an integrated asymmetric capability as appropriate including mobile survival and cost-effective capabilities into its military forces . june 28, senate approved the fiscal 20/20 authorization act including my commitment calling for the demonstration to comply with area
provisions and a few days ago july the state department approved $2.2 billion health to taiwan including 108 abrams tanks and 250stinger missiles . i commend demonstration for making this decision and implement are you as congress intended. what is your assessment of taiwan's defense capabilities and needs? >> how satan open forum that in addition to arya, going back to lines of key medication with congress, senate foreign relations committee, those cases that were announced on monday that you referenced went through a process as normal. in addition to arya, it aligns with the taiwan relations act so that factored in and still aligns with our one china policy. as far as their defense posture, it's safe to assess and its well-known open
source that they certainly had a sovereignty right to defend their sovereignty and it's one that we certainly would not see impeded upon and that does comport where we are with the taiwan relations at . >> what'syour assessment of likely and future. >> taiwan faces ? >> threats to taiwan's sovereignty are not abated or going away.and they are something that we need to factor with that partner. we are a reliable partner, they also are a reliable partner we are looking at making sure theindo pacific region is open and free . and they are part of constellation of to ensure that we have an open and free indo pacific. >> how is the administration supporting efforts of taiwan to develop an integrated asymmetric capabilities, the mobile survivalcost-effective capabilities into his military force ? >> with this particular partner with the parameters that we have worked with them, we see to make whatever capabilities are robust and
it's about making sure they're not only able to defend their sovereignty but play a regional security role or an open and free indo specific. >> one of the challenges we face is a pipelines that needs to be filled with continued action as itrelates to fulfill our commitment of the taiwan relations act . could you talk more about the pipeline so to speak of what else we will be doing to help taiwan and fulfill our obligations ? >> looking forward there are additional assets that we would be going through the review process here at the senate before we go to formal notification and that's already happening.your point about pipelines, certainly looking forward as to what capabilities may be required in the future versus previous last year's or a different generation's worth looking at to you the asymmetric trans regional aspect of threats that taiwan may need toaddress not just for their own homeland sovereignty . >> the challenge with arms
sales is allowing too much time between transactions with taiwan, allowing china greater opportunity to raise political opposition and if the pipeline is indeed filled and regular lies to be that would present a better opportunity for the united states to engage with taiwan and other allies and to make sure we fulfill the taiwan relations act which calls for routinized or regularized tales . thank you. >> editor, you would note their legislative body also has their particular processes require a pipeline aspect which is well noted that apartments and throughout the interagency. >> senator cardin. >> mister chairman, i have sat on this committee with democrats in the white house, republicans in the white house, democrats controlling this committee, republicans controlling this committee
and the balance of the arms export control act has never been breached except for this declaration. and i think it's extremely serious so iwant to put this on the record . we passed the wall and in the arms export control act that we passed, we made it clear about the mandatory nature of congressional involvement in arms sales. that's our prerogative as the article first branch of government on establishing policy. it is normal for us to give a national security waiver to a president, to give flexibility for unforeseen circumstances. we do not routinely in our legislation. but the exercise by this administration of authority shared a disrespect for congress. and could very well affect the comedy that exists between the two branches of the government on arms sales which means we are going to have to be more prescriptive in our laws taking away
discretion from the executive branch of government which may not be in our national security interest. but our responsibility to make sure our policies are carried out were not carried out in this instance. mister cooper, you mentioned may 1984 declaration. in 1984 it was to sales, not 22 sales. in 1984 the arms were delivered immediately, that's not the case in this and in 1984 you have strong support from congress on what you are doing, what the president was doing and in this case you don't know there's not an analogy between the use of the emergency declaration in 1984 and today. how many of the 22 arms sales have been delivered, completed ? >> of the sales, the direct commercial sales, the licensing has been completed . >> how many deliveries have beenmade of the 22 arms sales, it's a simple question . >> as far as specificity on the different deliveries we can provide that --
>> is it safe to saythat many of those arms sales have not been delivered ? as i understand the emergency declarations means the military equipment or our security, how many of those actual arms have been delivered today, not how many licenses have been issued, how many have been delivered? >> delivery is pending. the issuance in emergency was providing that reassurance for our partners. >> i understand that but they haven't been delivered, the declaration was made on may 24. the arms control actrequires a 15 to 30 day congressional review as a requirement . you couldn't go through a 15 to 30 day review what you've been considering this for a long time and the arms have not been delivered. do you understand why we consider this to be an abuse quest and mark. >> senator, they have been under review in many cases close to year so the cases
are not new, they have been under review. >> i understand that, the law requires a 15 to 30 daywhich you blew through . >> we covered that period beyond that, senator. >> i just urge you to recognize the risk factors that you're leaving for our country. if congress feels disrespected by what this president has done, this administration has done after our constitutional role, it leaves us little choice but to limit the discretion to the executive branch of government we can legally do because we are the legislative branch of government and that's what's coming down. i want to talk on another issue if i might which deals with the us conventional arms transfer policy that the us shall not authorize the transfer when the us has actual knowledge that transferred weapons will be used to commit crimes against
humanity, great breaches of the geneva conventions or attacks erected against civilian objects or civilians or legally protected from attack. you have said you've been working with the saudi's to reduce the number of civilian casualties that are targeting, etc. , yet i think it's in disputed after those consultations, there were still attacks in which the international community had violated the international geneva convention and civilians being targeted for death. that's what has been said several times. i could go to the philippines where we happy us weapons that have been provided and there's been extrajudicial killings that we know about that violate international norms . how are you protected, our policy that arms cannot be made available where we have knowledge that these governments have participated in actions that have violated these international norms mark.
>> in addition to statute, the current policy, the policy, this administration policy, those of a statute on those requirements, it doesn't preclude us from pushing further and harder. no department of defense is ever going to say they've reached a satisfactory point . >> blog requires a violated your transfer weapons and you have transferred weapons after we've acknowledged there's been violations. >> we do not suspend our security relationship with a partner that carries much weight or our interests and our equities in the region but we are not precluded from following on issues and abuses. we are not precluded from assuring and providing training and improvements on mitigation of civilian casualties. there's no updating of that. there is room for work. >> just so i understand your
answer using conventional arms transfer policy and be sacrificed if we have an importantrelationship with a country? >> it should not be sacrificed . >> that's what you're doing because you're transferring weapons after you have knowledge a violatednational norms . >> it doesn't preclude us from reconciliation. our policy is not just limited to arms transfers. it is an expression, a manifestation of what else we export . open society, human rights . that is a part of our policy. we do ask for the best of america with armstransfer policy, with that also comes the responsibility of the application of those weapons . adversaries do not provide a long sustainment tale, they also don't provide any tale of any support when it comes to application and precision of those services or weapons. it is what's required of us not only by statute as incumbent upon us from the policy and moral aspect. >> i conclude by saying you try, you haven't succeeded and you're still providing weapons and that is against
ourconventional arms transfer policy. >> senator romney . >> appreciate your being here today. we have a policy assignation to sell weapons to areas nation throughout the world. there are many reasons for doing that. one is to support the weapon making industry in our country which provides revenue and jobs for people here. i presume that's a very small parts of the decision-making about whether we are going to sell weapons someplace and it should be given very limited weight in our thinking about whether we're going to sell weapons. overwhelmingly i would anticipate that the decision to sell weapons to other nations should be related to a strategic purpose that we have as a nation so course we have a strategic purpose in providing the most modern weaponry available to our nato allies and to other nations that we have close relationships with but then
there are nations that are perhaps outside of that very close circle. we also sell weapons to. and i'd like to ask you what the decision rules are that you follow in thinking about those other nations and how you decide what types of weapons to sell to them and whether or not to sell weapons to them and where where do they fall under different categories, whether you have certain groups of countries which you sell certain types of weapons to or whether you look on a one-off basis nation by nation and say we're going to look here and do taiwan differently than we do saudi arabia. they fall into different categories and what are the decision rules that you follow in deciding not just to the nato and israel and these very close allies but to these other nations, what are the decision rules you follow after mark what is the us interest that you seek to foster by virtue of the decisions that you make?
>> thank you senator and your correct to assess that no partner is particularly on par with another partner or ally so you to your point about circles, one could say there's concentric rings of what is available but it's also what's capable of that partner. the assessment is not limited to my part of the state department. it is a whole of government assessment. this is all the way down at the field level where we do team assessments through our defense cooperation offices as well as our political aspects. it does include a whole host of issues or you would say factors of assessment of where is this country as far as their relationship with us bilaterally so country by country. what role do they play in a
partnership on a broader security alliance like nato. are there interoperability factors that we need to factor in like nato? are there other political issues that we need to address are there human rights issues we need to address quentin mark are there other negotiations or factors that we are seeking to address or reconcile at the same time a sale is being considered? that factors in the timing and sequencing ofa sale . another big one i would say is a shadow over all sales right now is what are we looking at from the national security strategy shadow of near. adversaries, near beer adversaries are limited to their own geographic regions. they are doing work in disruption throughout the globe so looking at a partner capability to address that on our behalf is certainly a factor so there's a host of interagency government factors that go into before we even informally notified congress about a potential sell, starting at the country team level, working with our embassies and working here at the ministerial interagency as well but it is very much
country by country, case-by-case area certainly factoring in regional considerations, certainly factoring in primarily our interests. are there us persons? are there us interests that need to be protected and there is an absorption issue, can the partner actually take the system or this program or platform and actually be able to apply it to market there's capacity factors, not just on their ability to defend their sovereignty and defend our interests, can they do it with what's being provided? it's safe to say there are partners that we work with that might have eyes bigger than their capacities and that's something we work to frame better and provide them a generation or capability that's more apropos to where they may be or where we would like to see them but to your question , it varies on what is the threat in the region, what is our bilateral relationship?
what is their capacity to absorb and also timing and sequencing of other strategic interests that we may be addressing inthe region . >> thank you,mister chairman . >> thank you mister chairman. assistant secretary cooper, it's been said already but i think it's worth repeating because i share in the disappointment that has been expressed by members of this committee over the deliberate decision to ignore the intent of the arms export control act. it's very clear that was a deliberate decision to ignore that act. congress and the executive branch have the protocol on arms sales that is fully capable of achieving our strategic goals, including addressing transfers from iran and saudi arabia and when the secretary disrupts that protocol by declaring an emergency, he erodes the
trust between our branches of government and that has consequences. that has consequences for this administration and consequences for future administrations and i hope you and the secretary and other members of the state department involved in this decision will think carefully aboutwhat the negative consequences of those decisions will be . so i would like to follow up on questions that have been asked and asked if you can describe the specific capability that saudi arabia and the uae were lacking, but these 22 arms sales address in a way that could not wait for 15 to 30 days for congressional approval to mark i have the list right here so i hope you will go through each one of those 22 arms sales and tell me which one of these was so immediate that it couldn't wait for congressional approval. >> thank you senator. i have the same list. on the overall to your question about capabilities and readiness, specific to any partners capability readiness or strengths or
gaps, i would happily address that in a classified setting if we are talking about that specificity. to the list there were a number of cases that were under consideration or under review already. these were the ones that were assessed as what would be supportive of defense of sovereignty and filling particular gaps. one, if you want to ask about immediacy was on some of the training and sustainment ones which were reaching some suspensive timeline that we are about to not happen or we would have gaps there as far as a support on the. >> but as i understand your response to senator cardin, those haven't yet been delivered, that correct?>> training and sustainment ones we were making sure that will break. on licensing, those licenses have been completed already for delivery. those loa's are still being
completed now that we know that these are the ones that have been identified for movement. >> and can you tell me whether there are any present or former employees that have ties to the company that impact the sales. that may have been involved to invoke this emergency prevention? >> i'm not personnel here but i will say that in the interagency pluses that applies here was us government process only. nobody from the industry was involved in this process. >> i didn't ask that, i asked if there are any former state apartment employees with ties to companies affected by these sales who are involved in the discussions around the emergency expiration. >> not that i'm aware of senator. this was a governmental decision, interagency decision, the department process applied here. >> can you tell me as has
been suggested, we are not supposed to transfer weapons or the country that we provide weapons you are not supposed to transferthose weapons . for use on civilian targets or any unauthorized plans, yet there has been reports that the uae has applied general haftar in libya with american missiles area is there an investigation and how do we expect to sanction the uae if the investigation shows that in fact they have supplied those missiles -mark . >> yes ma'am. the committee staff had a classified brief this monday from the state department pacific to the issue raised about jobs being present in libya. what i can say today is that the javelins in question part
of the investigationthat we're conducting in brief committee staff on along to friends , not the uae. >> and if they had shared those missiles, what kind of sanctions would you expect us to impose on the uae? >> as with any partner when there's an investigation of end-use violation, there are consequences that could be a station or suspension of romance. we've seen that and applied with other partners. sometimes it specific to the system, sometimes it's broader. we can touch other security assistance but there are consequences where the department and congress have worked concurrently to identify suspense is. >> and as i'm sure you're aware, today. we are hearing that turkey, a nato ally of ours is expected to receive a rate of the f 400 system. from russia. nato adversary. i will be administration respond to that. we have requested briefings
from state and defense on this topic. when can we expect that kind of everything to happen. >> center, i can't give you any on everything but when i can talk about you and i had a discussion about my confirmation hearing is we demonstration actually i think all parts of government have been very clear to our target partners regardless of operational level or any senior principal level of their being consequences of delivery of the as/400. the biggest issue that has been raised and re-amplified and reasserted with me with a nato partner is that the as/400 is the challenge to interoperability as a nato partner is an affront. we have made it clear that there are consequences and they are at risk of sanctions. speaking of tools provided by congress, and is one of those tools get ministration has. i don't think there's been any lack of clarity to the turkish government on our
concern about them and their responsibility as a nato partner that they're putting it risk with thereceipt of the as/400 . >> you, i'm out of time but i would point out that congress, the senate has said that they received a degree of as/400. they should not receive the f 35 or be part of that program that understanding as well . >> we are on the same page editor, that's very clear. they may not be listening but we've also . >> thank you, senator cruise. >> thank you mister chairman. i you for your testimony. break this issue down into two parts. substance and process. on the substance, i agree with theadministration . that these arms sales were appropriate. not because the saudi's are steady and reliable allies. the studies are deeply
problematic allies , this conduct is often lacking and they have historically shown are too much of a willingness to get in bed with enemies of america even though they are a problematic ally. the saudi's are also i believe a critical counterweight to iran. and on a rational and reasonable comparison, measuring the threat to the united states america between the saudi's and it ran is not remotely close. granite is led by the mullahs in iraq: 10 chance death to america and is the world's leading statesponsor of terrorism . that is the reason that i ultimately voted with the administration in support of these arms sales. it's because helping the saudi's defend themselves againstiran is in the united states national security interest . can you articulate to this committee the threat that
iran poses both to the saudi's but more fundamentally to the united states? >> iq center. an open forum, in reference that persistent threat has not gone away, that's fair. what has changed is that recent upticks and direct threats to us persons and us interest in the gulf region, that is what's different. to our partners, there are direct threats not only by tehran but emanating through tehran, we discussed a little t t of what has been an open source and open forum about attacks that have been incurred upon our saudi partners, are emirates partners on theircivilian populace and infrastructure . we talked about the huthis and what they're doing to exacerbate and expand the humanitarian crisis in yemen as well as being supported by
understatement given that they are the leading state sponsor of terrorism in the world and directly responsible for the murders of over 600 u.s. servicemen and women. >> they also are a facilitator of other forms of terrorism beyond direct reports of what we would call command and control of tehran government. there are elements that are not under direct command and control from the quds force says he recognized and again we are an open form at this time. >> yes i agree i -- as i said i grieve for substance but shifting to the process i have to say i agree with the concerns that have been expressed at this hearing from both sides of the aisle. the process that the state department follows in these weapons sales not to put fine -- to find if a point on it was cracked. under the arms export control act the administration needs congressional approval and has a 30-day notification period and
forward ever reason the administration and what seems to me a not fully baked decision-making process decided to circumvent the law, decided to circumvent the constitutional responsibilities of congress and act unilaterally. now, if you have an army surging on the border in an eminent emergency that's one thing. it's now been 47 days since you declared an emergency. did i hear you right in your answer to questions earlier that you can point to a single one of these 22 sales that have actually been delivered? >> the licenses have been completed on the des cipher delivery. >> it's a simple question, have they've been delivered? >> on the servicing and training component yes but if we are tracking hardware they are ready for delivery.
>> so that was 47 days ago that the emergency occurred today here he right when he said the review process for this was close to a year? >> this goes back to the cases you are referencing the process here. there are cases that have been before congress in the review process for close to a year. >> yes the department had a year to consider this the department had 30 days to take it to congress and follow the law and it was foolish not to and don't make the mistake of thinking that is simply democrats who are concerned about this. i voted with the administration on the substance because of the threat of iran but i will tell you from my end if the administration does it again and there is not an emergency you will not have my vote and i predict he will not have the vote of a number of other
republicans as well. the simplest processes to follow the dam law and respect it. thank you. and i thank you. senator coons. >> thank you senator romney and ranking member menendez. i want to complement commander cooper on achieving a rare moment of bipartisanship on this committee. i will tell you it's not often that my colleague from texas and i agree completely on a matter. his statement that the saudis are a deeply problematic partner who have shown too often a willingness to embrace enemies of our country, i agree and his condemnation and that of many others on both sides of the aisle here about the timing and the process both in the consultation and the ultimate decision in arms sales. it's one of those moments that i
hope it's the attention from the administration. i appreciate your service and your testimony here today. it is important that we continue to have an open and constructive dialogue between that legislative branches and on something as significant as the arms export control act and the complicated consequences of our sales to our security and military partners around the world i think it is essential that we ask questions and get answers. most of the concerns i intended to raise here today have been addressed by my colleague so let the ask one or two additional questions. we have sold billions of dollars in arms to our golf partners and allies over the years. in your view that the sales produced capable military? >> yes i was sharing earlier about partner to partner capacity assessments no partners the same there's always an ongoing assessment about their ability to restore particular flat form -- platform and their
ability to be able defend their own sovereignty and ongoing exception on their ability to be a regional security partner. they are always in varying degrees. sales in potential sales are how we contribute to improved an odd mid-capabilities. sometimes the will of the partner does not always marry up to the capability of a partner and that's not unique but it does actually amplify for constant assessment and when i say assessment this isn't limited to the state department. we share this with their interagency departments and we share this with the intelligence community. it's not going process and it also includes sometimes taking an honest assessment of if a partner needs to adjust we provided to the partner.
>> secretary cooper it's actually the honest adjustment that lies at this core. what i hope will be a constructive process led by the chairman to reconsider and reevaluate the u.s. partnership and our relationship because frankly i have grave concerns over their conduct in the war in yemen over the human rights actions within the saudi kingdom and others in the region or the world and in my view those of us who have stood with the saudis over a number of years because of concerns, legitimate concerns about the threats that iran poses to the region and the world, for many of those that patience has run out. we have made persistence sustained engaged efforts to improve their conduct against civilians in the war in yemen only to be shown over and over again that they have come up short. i think it is long overdue for us to reconsider.
what are the limits, what are the limits to our relationship with the saudi kingdom clicks are there times when we are putting not just their security at risk that our values at risk by the ways in which a long and close partner is conducting themselves. i see my time is almost up. let me just say this in closing. you have heard comments today forcefully conveying from both sides of the aisle by senators, both the substance and the process for emergency arms sales has gotten us to a place where the administration must respect the mandate of the law, the process to be followed in order for the sake of grants to preserve emergency exemptions that exist in the law. if not i suspect this body will act to restrict or remove that ability for future emergency waivers altogether. thank you. >> thank you senator coons and i
think those remarks are well taken. there is a lot of frustration right now. reevaluation is really, really important and i really hope this morning with bill senator shaheen and i are cosponsoring that is a bipartisan bill that strikes at the very issue and calls for a reevaluation of some very specific steps in that regard. i'm really hoping all of us can join together to pass this legislation. obviously it doesn't go as far as many would like you to go particularly when it comes to the specifics of recent events but again i think we shouldn't focus on that as much as actually developing a bipartisan method for reevaluating the relationship because it has had an impact on us since 2015 and
unfortunately it's right at a time when challenges from iran are getting substantially more significant as we try to respect fully and reasonably impose sanctions for what they are doing. all of this causes a rubik's cube kind of a problem. we are up to this and we have done other things that are as difficult and i hope we can all do together in the next couple of weeks as we try to work on this piece of legislation. thank you for your remarks and your expression of frustration on the part of virtually everybody up here is known. thank you senator coons and without senator kaine. >> secretary cooper thank you for your testimony. my colleagues have done a good job of laying out the concerns on the statute and i just want to go in a different direction. one word, why, why? y. bypass congress on arms sales to the saudi's? y. bypass congress and not
provide congress the traditional notifications when part a10 authorizations allowed transfer of nuclear know-how? why vetoed the congressional repudiation of the saudi led war in yemen? why he refused to comply with the direct congressional request under the magnitsky at about whether the assassination of jamal showed he was a human rights violation or not. there periods of instances with this administration where in response to congressional action in some cases congressional mandate it matters dealing with saudi arabia that the administration is taking unusual actions. mr. chair effect introduce for the record or report from the house oversight committee dated february 2019 whistleblower raises grave concerns for the trump administration's efforts to transfer sensitive nuclear
technology to saudi arabia. >> that will be entered into the record thank you sir. >> let me list some dates and secretary cooper at this as a broader set of questions for the administration that i know i and many other members are concerned about. as a candidate for president in august of 2015 than candidate donald trump said quote saudi arabia i get along great with all of them. they spent 40, 50 million bucks. surely after he was inaugurated in may of 2017 president trump took his first visit to riyadh and announced a 110 billion-dollar arms deal. in december of 2017 the trump administration approved a part a10 authorization authorizing transfer of nuclear know-how to the saudis. the pass this information had been publicly noted.
this notification, this authorization of transfer to the saudis was not notified of to congress in december of 2017. within one month after the first transfer of this nuclear know-how to saudi arabia and investment real estate firm brooks field business partners announced a plan to do an unusual purchase. they bought the westinghouse electric one of the primary nuclear services industries in the united states for $4.6 billion. surely after brooks field bought it westinghouse secretary terry began testifying on the hill in public settings saying it was our goal as a nation to get the saudis to use westinghouse to construct reactors in saudi arabia and public testimony that westinghouse. in august of 2018 brooksville brooks field which once westinghouse made another
unusual investment. jared kushner had a troubled real estate deal on sixth avenue in new york or brooks field came in and entered into a 99 year lease worth more than $1 billion that has been reported as essentially bailing out of troubled theo and they take all of the lease money for 99 years up front. they paid it up front after the administration has been promoting their westinghouse now owned subsidiary to the saudis and transferring nuclear technology to the saudis. brooks field now comes in with a massive investment in jared kushner's personal property. virginia resident and -- jamal khashoggi was murdered within a few weeks, days after that the trump administration approved another nuclear party to the
saudis without informing congress or the public. in november of 20 teen president trump said the u.s. stands with saudi arabia after khashoggi's for dreeben though u.s. intel committee with saying that the royal family and possibly mbs was complicit in that murder. congress directed the administration of the magnitsky act to determine whether or not there was a human rights violation in 2019. the white house responded to render a determination. within days after that they did another transfer to the saudis that they refuse to notify congress about. in april of 2019 president trump veto the bipartisan resolution to end u.s. military support for the saudi war in yemen. in may of 2019 the state department submitted the emergency notifications for your talking about saying they didn't have time to notify congress when 47 days later by your own
testimony for hardware was not actually delivered. just last month the u.n. published a special report concerning the state-sponsored murder of jamal khashoggi encouraging the u.n. and the fbi to continue to do more criminal desiccation which as far as we know is not being done. this is the material that the house oversight committee is looking at. this is the material that we are very interested in. when you look at the financial ties between the president's own family and companies that stand to benefit and that are being publicly promoted by the secretary of energy to benefit from this deal and you asked the question of why is the administration bypassing congress not on matters dealing with other countries but again and again and again on matters dealing with saudi arabia. i think the hearing we are having today is just the tip of the iceberg about what congress needs to do to exercise oversight about why there is
such a departure from the ordinary course of business on matters of such national security sensitivity with respect to saudi arabia through with that mr. chair i appreciate it. >> thank you senator kaine. senator murphy. >> thank you very much mr. chairman. it looks these days is that the united states is a junior partner in this relationship. i think of all of the timeline that senator kaine went through the idea that we transferred the saudi nuclear days after the dismemberment of the journalist came to light causes us all to think this is one big scam. i'm glad we are doing this hearing. i want to drill down part of your testimony mr. cooper. with respect to the purpose of our continued coalition with the
saudis preview seiner testimony that quote way up worked with the saudi led coalition over the course of operations to reduce the occurrence of civilian casualties. but that is not in fact true. in fact the opposite is true. civilian casualties are dramatically increasing. in 2017 airstrikes killed approximately 2700 civilians inside of yemen. in 2018 airstrikes killed approximately 4600 civilians inside of yemen and reports are consistent that approximately one third of coalition airstrikes are hitting civilian targets. that number has not changed. do you have different numbers or do you agree with this broad assessment that civilian casualties are increasing and not decreasing? >> on the tragedy with the
civilian casualties there is an uptick in what we have seen rum the houthi activity on civilians. >> i asked about the airstrikes. the reports are that almost twice as many civilians were killed by airstrikes and the airstrikes or by the coalition in 2018 and 2017. your testimony says you have works to reduce civilian deaths. >> there is ongoing work to not only mitigate but also refine targeting so this is not limited to where targets are conducted by the coalition and how they actually conduct the work. this is also avoiding areas where there would be civilian casualties. that work has not abated. it has actually increased. we can talk about that. >> just to get the facts right you are wording the testimony carefully. said you worked with them to reduce civilian casualties but
would you concede civilian casualties have increased? >> correct cannot speak to the exact numbers that i can tell you what we have done on capabilities to mitigate has increased on mitigating civilian casualties. >> why can't you speak to the numbers? if you are working with them to decrease civilian casualties would you keep the numbers? >> on her and interagency we work with our partners with dod and others to get into capacity where they are more precise in in and identifying targets more precise and executing the target and an avoidance. >> i know that you are trying to work on that but you can't testify before us today is what the actual civilian cazalot these are? you don't know whether they have increased or decreased? >> the numbers associated with casualties are not limited to what has been attributed to
coalition numbers senator. >> do you know or do not know whether civilian casualties have increased due to coalition airstrikes? >> i would say in a general sense that there is a delta of information would attributed to a coalition described casualty in what may be described as tea or an adversarial. >> i will be happy to give information as the failed double overtime in the fact that you are talking around this. you spoke earlier about consequences that would run to a u.s. ally that transfers to third parties not authorized to be the recipient of u.s. arms. as you know in every of this year there was a disturbing report that suggested multiple u.s. weapons had been transferred to private militias operating inside yemen. reports are that oshkosh armored
vehicles were transferred to al qaeda and uae government confirmed they have transferred m. rapp vehicles doing work on uae's the half in yemen today. he come to the conclusion that these transfers were made and if you have what have the consequences been and how can you justify continuing to sell arms to countries that are openly advertising that they are taking the weapons we give them in the vehicles we give them and giving them to others that are not authorized to be in possession? >> thank you senator. the uae remains a security partner for the region notches for their sovereignty but our interest however does not preclude us from an investigation does not preclude us from falling up and does not preclude us from any
consequence. specifically to the mrap question i have discussed that directly with the emirate government and we have been working with the embassy to get more detailed information on that issue. it is an ongoing investigation. it has not been completely resolved that we have directly approach the emirate government at the ministerial level and at the working level. specific to the reported mrap transfer. >> my time is up that they have publicly confirmed that they transferred the mrap? they told a "cnn" reporter but they gave the mrap so that report coming in february doesn't need a five month long investigation part of her frustration about this new transfer of weapons to the emirate is it signals there are no consequences so i'd hope that this committee would make further in korea as to why the
investigation is still ongoing when in february the uae government confirmed they had taken these mraps and given them to a militia inside the uae. i'm sorry i've gone over my time mr. chairman. >> during the june 12 house hearing on the so-called emergency said quote holding a partner, but doesn't preclude us from working with partner a partner. if anything removing ourselves from our partner puts at risk ensuring that accountability. anyone remotely familiar with the subject the trump administration is not held saudi arabia and the uae to account for the unacceptable actions fact it has rewarded them. that fits a pattern of the trump administration appeasement of the parties including one providing access to nick lee or no pal, two supporting an
immoral war in yemen, three breaking her word on the iran nuclear deal and for helping beyond escape accountability for the murder of jamal khashoggi and for the use of child soldiers. this accountability you speak of is purely theoretical accountability. mr. cooper would china keep selling arms to countries that are committing human rights violations? >> i am sure china as has i would say not any parameters or any bar that would put them from selling to any customer that was willing to receive their equipment or subpar services. >> would russia keep selling arms in such a case to countries that are committing human rights violations? >> senator i would say any of those adversaries probably do not have the parameters and the
requirements that we the united states government expect from any of our security partners regardless of the region they are in. >> and practice other countries require no accountability for the sales of deadly weapons so why is the united states dealing with china and what russia would do in a situation quest without any count ability with the saudis anymore than the chinese or the russians said -- it. >> blessedly we are not operating on the same limited parameters or the lack of parameters that those adversaries would be operating under. if anything we have type parameters. we are also transparent. those adversaries you reference don't operate in a transparent fashion either with their legislative branch or their partners they are dealing with. the recipient country of their populace probably isn't aware of
of the consumer sales that they've been signed up that the government is committed to. we also provide sustainment in a way that an adversary doesn't. we make sure that our partners receive a platform system that is operable but we make sure they can be capable and ready for security interests. >> what you are saying is we have transparency so everyone knows we are selling the equipment. we actually give good training so they can operate the equipment so that's great but we don't actually than hold them accountable for their human rights violations. maybe the chinese or the russians are not as transparent but they also don't require any human rights compliancy so your argument that we should be a
reliable security partner and that will further our values, that unfortunately demonstrates the trump administration standards no higher than those than china or russia and we are at the bottom in terms of whether standards will be on human rights. to the trump administration or ability to push our partners for accountability and moral leadership is theoretical platitudes rather than a practical reality. it is critical that the united states see the country that upholds the rules and the company that advances freedom and accountability to the trump administration intentionally is overlooking human rights considerations in her arms force and using the guise of that quote emergency to do so. mr. cooper there is a wide bipartisan agreement that your efforts have been in positions
and i have yet to see any evidence that the administration has any standard for hospitals and how many targeted activists he would take to have the trump administration changes course. the problem is the trump administration you -- refuses to use the very events you say they arms sales provides. they refer to its morality and increasingly powerful. mr. cooper we need some evidence of this administration having stood up for human rights in saudi arabia, some evidence that is happened. it's thus far it is still not evident to the american people. >> thank you senator markey. >> if i may and senator your break to point out that we not only exporter no pal under technology but also to export
what makes america unique and that is export our values, exporter open society or free society and we do do that. that's part of the process. specific to saudi arabia and uae they are supported by the administration by the secretary. their cases that the secretary is pressing specifically as well as ambassador abizaid. there are also other human rights concerns that are not always enumerated in the open annual report that are department produces that those factors are not precluded out all. we can work with partners but we can also continue to address issues of concern that are about open society, free society, dissident voices in human rights. we can do both and we have done both in the country and week continue to do so. >> again i say thank you but again gamman, khashoggi, nuclear
know-how fully fear ran nuclear deal. there may be some small exception but the larger picture of the united states is not with the human rights issues. >> thank you senator markey. mr. cooper is the assistant secretary for political military affairs i assume you understand the difference between the informal review process on arms sales with the committee and the senate's 30-day statutory resolution of disapproval. is that a fair statement? >> guest center and including how that's defined by the nato allies and different partners. >> i don't know about nato ally. i simply care about what we do here so in that regard when you answered senator cardin and you had some of these have been pending for a year the reality is as it relates to the
statutory 30-day senate wide review that's not a completely accurate answer. 47 days a year the secretary claimed there was an emergency is it not true the state has not given the government to government draft contract to the saudis and emirates for all eight of the military sales? >> there is ongoing on the alloway and fms. working with the government to government audit. they have to be adjusted because some of them were dated during the informal review process so getting some of those up today. what is complete is the license. >> i appreciate you answering questions that i didn't ask. let me reiterate.
is it not true that the state has not given the government to government draft contracts to the saudis and emirates for military sales, yes or no? >> i can't assess the exact status of that now. >> the assistant secretary of state in charge of arms sales in this matter. you know what this hearing is all about and you can't tell me back? let me help you out. as of july 1, there have been three letters of offer and acceptance for the military sales. they can wait 30 days for the statutory senate why congressional review of the sales and yet 47 days after the secretary's emergency the administration still hasn't offered a government to government contract so what is the sense of emergency?
let me turn to something else. is anyone at the state department or the white house advise you not to answer specific questions during this hearing? >> i have not received that. >> than i expected full and complete answer from you. to your knowledge to anyone in the white house advocate or direct at the state department find a way to move the sales from saudi arabia the uae are both despite my and chairman angles note? >> i am not aware of that senator. it was the secretary's decision to make and it was a tool for the secretary. >> at the state department made this decision fully independent of the white house as you know what? >> breaking tell you from where i sit that secretary pompeo had several weeks to look at it. this was another set of tools in his toolkit to deter iran. it was his decision to make
senator. >> let me reiterate my question. did the state department make the decision fully independent of the white house, yes or no? >> there is an interagency process that is required. all these cases went through that with knowledge of these cases of the cases went through an interagency process. >> at the white house was involved. >> we talked about taiwan. they would be part of that process. the review of any arms case. mchugh confirmed on april 30 of this year. isn't it true that upon your confirmation there were discussions taking place at the state department about invoking an emergency declaration on some or all arms sales? >> what i can confirm is there is always an ongoing assessment
on any of the cases that we have not just what we are talking about today. >> i'm only interested in the ones we are talking about today. there were conversations of the time you took opposite there were discussions by the state department in terms of evoking the emergency declaration of the sales. >> i cannot speak to the emergency declaration was safe to assess these cases an emergency deck rations certainly would have been under consideration and of interest when looking at the poster of their sovereignty and their ability to -- >> did you discuss anyone you discuss any one of the part the evoking an emergency declaration? >> in an open forum i'm not going to talk about that. >> this is the secretary's decision senator. >> this isn't the secretary's decision. but privilege are you asserting?
what privilege are you asserting? scene at the interagency review taking place before we do a informal notification on any case and also the review of the intelligence. >> it that is not privilege. that is before the senate oversight committee of this particular department and there is no legal basis to refuse to respond regardless whether it's. decisional or not. i'm simply asking you when did you first discuss with anyone in the department invoking an emergency declaration? >> to a specific date i cannot tell you but i can tell you the iran threat was certainly of interest. it would be for anybody coming to the department at that time. >> the threat you justifies not the same threat in april of this year.
>> at there is a poster ship but i would say anybody arriving in the national security framework in a different capacity would be in a number of statuses. >> i would ask you to locate your calendar and respond to me in writing. when was the first date that you began to discuss an emergency declaration on these 22 arms sales? >> looking for the qfr senator. i do want to emphasize review of any poster would have would have been part of my read on. fortunately i was in the national security framework. >> my point is the threat poster in april is often the threat posture -- >> it was developed to the timing. >> let me ask you today one final question not to delay the hearing anymore.
give me a simple yes or no. did you or the department receive a legal written notice on this declaration? >> our legal advisory was that it was within the statute that congress had passed and blessed within the realm of the secretary's authority. >> thank you for ask the dash thank you for answer a question i did not ask you. you've become very good at that. i asked you a different question. did you receive a written underscored written opinion? and there was legal opinion provided. >> a written legal opinion? >> there were a number of reviews that took place in the interagency including legal on what was in the statute and what was applicable and available.
>> you have served the country so well in many ways and it pains me to have to go through this but i will try it again. written, was there any written legal opinion, yes or no? >> senator there were multiple reviews and multiple writings not just legal but interagency. this was not, this was a very prudent process. we are talking a detailed review that took place for the secretary to have that option to make a decision. >> mr. chairman this is why we have challenges here. this is why i try to work together to achieve certain goals but when a simple answer, not a written opinion, i mean
when there is no responsive -- responsiveness like this i have limited resources i can use to try to get a response. if i could only get honest and transparent answers to my questions and not answers that have nothing to do with my questions we could all move along a lot further and we could achieve a lot more but so long as this is the type of fans are going to get i'm going to use all the tools at my disposal to get the right answer, to get the transparent ones. thank you. >> thank you very much senator menendez. my experiences all you can do is ask questions that you can make a man answer questions the way he wanted answers and that's just the way it is. >> it's not the way i wanted. i would just like to get in honest answer.
>> again you can only craft the questions. you can't craft the answers. in any event that will conclude are hearing today. mr. cooper thank you very much for being with us today. the record for main open until friday and we asked the witness to respond as properly as possible. your responses may be made part of the record and with that the committee is adjourned. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
one raising kids scored on those tests if they don't have the background knowledge to understand the passages in the first place. not that they can't make it inference. they make inferences and their life all the time. toddlers can make an inference of that's not a problem as much as their lack of knowledge and vocabulary to understand the passage and that can be a big problem.
>> drugs matter into takes those drugs and why don't the drugs have effect ahead in the 60s and early 70s clicks that something we are resting to understand through the technology of drugs. we have some people that -- is imperative in understanding in the production of history. what drugs we use in a given. maegan place have the incredible ability change the direction of a given society.