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tv   Adm. James Stavridis Ret. Sailing True North  CSPAN  April 23, 2020 3:27pm-4:25pm EDT

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commentator, doris carnes good win will talk but her 2018 book, leadership in turbulent times. joint the conversation tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> television has changed since c-span back 41 years ago but the "mission impossible" continues to provide an unfelt at thed view of government. we brought you primary election coverage texas presidential impeachment process and now the federal response to the coronavirus. you can watch on television, online, or listen on the free radio app and be part of the national conversation through c-span's daily washington jacques prom. c-span created by private industry america's cable television company and brought to you by your television
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provider. [applause] >> thank you, ladies and gentlemen, meese be seated. it is my distinct honor to introduce a special guest and a good friend, this is the second of our jack brennan distinguished leadership series. the first member of that series was general james mattis who was here two months. jack brennan was the first president of president nixon, lieutenant colonel in the marine corps, retired from the marines rather than leave nixon's side and when he had a gift of the library we thought we would name the series for and we had a distinguished -- we remind people that jack brennan served and continued to serve and could glad you're here.
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i you're a veteran or member of active duty. would you stand and allow to us thank you. [applause] >> now, our guest is admiral james stavridis. from the united states naval academy in 1976. he went on a 37 year career and some extraordinary duty stations along the way, including, as the combat -- southern command from 2006 to 2009, and of course, nato allied supreme commander. he earned his ph.d as well in masters arts and law from the fletcher school of law and diplomacy, which he subsequently renton lead his dean after retirement from the navy. the art miller is the author of ten books and also an operating executive with the carlisle
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group which most americans know as the preeminent venture capitalist fund in the united states. chairedded boards of the counselors at the mcchartty associates, among the more treasured guests have on my radio show and i'm leading personal lay campaign to get admiral stavridis on the board of at least one or at least three big tech companies so google, facebook, and amazon bring to their perspective and discussions a view to the national security of the united states from someone knowledgeable about all these things. so, for his 37 years -- [applause] -- i also like to point out he spent 11 of those years out of sight of land. so that is quite a recommendation. please join me in welcoming admiral james stavridis. [applause]
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>> what re are going to do is a little different for our audience here and on c-span i'll ask the admiral a few questions and then he'll do a presentation and i want to make broader. he thank you author of ten books. the first question is, i titles matter. never -- why did you that i accidental admiral. >> anybody who follows the navy knows the place you want to end up in the navy as four star is the pacific. you want to be out there where nimitz was and hasey hallsey and all the great naval admirals and i wanted to track to go to the pacific and then the secretary of defense bob gates called me up and said, we need you to go to europe and work at nato, and i said, mr. secretary, i don't really know much about nato or europe. said i'm a pacific guy. and that did not win him over, and so i felt this was kind of
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an accident that i ended up in europe. and then secondly, because all of our lives are accidents. all of our lives, the big turns, we can never predict them, and so i wanted the title of the book that emphasized that you can have a brilliant plan for your life, but there will be intervening moments, and the accident admiral. >> i've often said the eight most important words in the english language are, have you ever considered, and i know a guy. who is that guy and i know a guy that made your career. >> admiral mike mullen. who was the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff at the far end of his career but early in his career, and early in mine, he is probably ten years senior to me, which is kind of the perfect distance for a mentor in the military. when he was the head of human
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resources, if you will, we called him in the navy detailer. he was my detailer and broke me out of a kind of a standard sea-going career and said, stavridis, you have something going on. we're going to send you to the fletcher school of law and diplomacy, we're going to put you in a police to do a ph.d -- a position to do a ph.d. very unconventional. and he was there at the beginning of my career and then at the far end when i was getting ready to become a four star officer. a very strong advocate. the point i want to make is he was a mentor who followed up. so often people talk but being mentors but they dent have that followup. they don't truly engage again and again. admiral mike mullen was there for me after every step. >> the first bike got to know you, in the leaders bookshelves and our friends who are listening and watching on
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c-span, this is a book you can give to anyone at any time in any career and it will be invaluable to them. i found to it be invaluable. which you explain to people why you wrote this and what it does. it's really extraordinary. >> the title tells it, the leader's bookshelf and it's -- the idea is to identify 50 books that can make you a better leader, and because, hugh, nobody has time to actually read 50 books, what is in here is a synopsis of each of these 50 books, and the leadership lessons that come from them, and it's not a bunch of boring leadership books. it's actually novels, like "to kill a mockingbird," connecticut yankee in king arthur's court. it's autobiography issue lime the memoirs of general grant.
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biography of nimitz. like it as a gift because you can hand it to somebody and they can either do the "people" magazine version and read through it or say, wow, that one really catches my interest. i'm going to actually sit down and read in love and war by vice admiral james stockdale and his wife, sybil. >> what is remarkable our two jack brennan distinguished leadership series is general mattis has appendix of 63 poocks and you both urge, ex-ore tate, adamant that young officers and old be reading. can you expand on that. >> i can and i had a chance to have dinner with a handful of the nrotc junior cadets who aring here this evening and they asked me what ick do to prepare myself for military service? and i are important, physical fitness,
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knowledge of ship handling, tactics, but the most important thing is to read, because the day you graduate from a university is the day that you own your education. and at the end of your life, you will be the sum of what you have continued to invest in that education. read, read, read, and to practically answer the question, only through picking up a book, novel, for example, let's take dates of fire about the battle -- you can put yourself in that moment. it's a simulator, chance to test yourself against the highest standards. i think reading is powerful and experiment it's a force multiplier in our life. >> the next book is sea sea sea power and i taught me all i needed to know but global
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climate change bus the ice isn't there writ was when you first started so it's -- whether or not you're a scientist, you're going to plays in he arctic you never went before, but it's named for a book that is -- got a fairly good pedigree and a good friend of minimum, commander cook, an aviator in vietnam said i'm not going to read a book called sea power but he converted. explain to the audience was sea power was intended to do and the legacy it carries. s sea power, the history and geopolitics of the world residents ocean. instead of writing a book about people, i decided to write a book where the characters are the world's oceans. chapter on the atlantic, the pacific, the mediterranean, arctic, south china sea and there's power in that because in each chapter i talk but the history of that region of the world, and tie to the importance of the seas, and that is the
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connection to the admiring you're thinking of, alfred they're mahan who great the nave. the reason we have of powerful marine corps and navy is because of the ocean. 75% of the planet is cover bid water, 59 parse of all trade moves on the ocean. 70% of the oxygen you're broguing tonight comes from photo synthesis in the sea. the oceans matter. that's the genesis of the book and the theories is we ought to have a strategy for deals with those oceans as surely as alfred thayer mahan ash tick rated the strategy 120 years ago. >> my last two questions have to do with two of the chapters in this wonderful new book, sailing true north, buy graph
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biographical sketches of ten admirals and i pick tease two -- chester nimitz commanded nixon. one of the millions of sailors on thousands of ships under nimitz command and one i'll ask you but is zumwalt. would chester nimitzs, make it in the navy of today? >> i think the real question is, would he even have made it out of the naval academy of today. when he was a midshipman, he was often known to go, would would say, over the wall ununauthorized liberty, good out of town and buy beer for his classmates and bring it back, and there's a wonderful vignette
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about nimitz, this even as a midshipman i picture him as stately, tall, great executive hair, the whole package, in this beer shop and seize what he thinks is a civilian over there and buys his beer and moves on. the next day, it turns out that civilian is one of the officers at the naval academy. and so nimitz is like, my career is over. but he gets a second chance. and i think there's power in that idea, hugh, that to get those chester nimitzs you have to give people a second chance. certainly get many second chances in he course of my career. there's power in that lesson. >> i read if great interest the zumwalt chapter because at the nixon library we're cure you've about and researching researchie relationship between the president and the pentagon.
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there was a very controversial scandal at that time. can you expand on what that was and whether or not bud zumwalt knew that was going on. >> there was this sort of -- i don't want could use the word cabal -- of the intelligence gathering on civilian officials by the military and that sounds terrible, it and is. it was probably more benign than that. probable livermore in the category of -- probably more in the category of this person in the white house thinks this one and this one thinks this way but the appearance of gathering intelligence in order to move a military agenda was pretty damning. the record is unclear whether zumwalt was fully witness -- witting or that or flow. give bill the ben it of the doubt. i think he was an individual of high integrity and i'll talk about him in a moment or two.
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but the lesson here for all of us is be careful of the optics, be careful how something appears, because it can drag you down if you are not very careful to maintain yourself at the highest levels of standards of all times. >> and a followup question, zumwalt was, quote, deep sleektive. nixon did a lot of deep selecting as president. he reached for academy patrick moynihan. pulled kissinger from harvard and kissinger never mitt -- never met him. doesed the navy need to do more deep select. >> i'd say more and at you know, we just deep selected the current chief of nave operations, admiral michael gillday, and mill gillday, a couple of months ago was three-star thinking about well maybe if the stars align i might get a fourth star and the secretary of the navy, richard
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spencer, faces a crisis in that the original candidate, admiral bill moran, had an issue, had to step aside so instead of going to that four star bench, secretary of the navy reached way down relatively speaking to a three star officer and elevated him over the entire four star community. it's happened before. zumwalt and before that, admiral arley burk was elevated as a three-star. so, the advantage of doing it is you really get a fresh set of eyes and no one, who is elevated, has any baggage to pay off. you get a clean break. that can be very advantageous and i would argue as the navy goes into this turbulent 21st 21st century, we would be well-serve to do at lower deep sleek. >> gives me the perfect transition to a clean break. now my pleasure to turn the stage over to admiral stavridis
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to give you a presentation. hope your clicker there is. >> it is. thank you very much. well, first and for most i want to say thank you to hugh and to the nixon library, and i want to also just sort of spend a moment while the furniture is moved -- which it is -- so thank you above all, hugh, betsy, greet have you oh, are hugh lazy lovely wife, navy mom, nave ya daughter, a lot of navy in the house tonight. that was a wonderful introduction, and normally when people hear that introduction, supreme allied he commander and all that, then they actually see me and typically have reactions. one is, wow, i thought you'll be taller. and the other reaction is, they say, well, you know, stavridis, if you're really that cool why
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were you not a navy fighter pilot. to be honest, i desperately wanted to be a navy fighter pilot bud -- but i had a traumatic experience at an airport that made aviation really difficult for me. so here's what we are going to do and i'll do this in 25 minutes so we're going to sail fast. but i want to talk about the oceans. but what i really want to talk about is character. and i need everyone to understand the difference between leadership, jim mattis was here a while back. i'm sure he talk about leadership. not here to talk but leadership. i'm here to talk but character. leadership is whats we do to influence others. it's a big door. and it swings out there,
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influencing millions of people as it did for me when is a nato commander. that big door of leadership swings on a very small hinge, and that hinge is human character. you cannot swing that door of leadership unless your, which allows it to swing. so i set out to write a book but character. we are awash in books of leadership. there are a lot of them. i wanted to write a book about that inner voyage. how we lead ourselves, that is character. and write about what you know about. i decided to write using a framework of ten admirals so we'll zip back in history 2500 years, and we're going to pull it right up to the present and talk about ten very dynamic admirals. i'm greek american, so there has to be a greek american, not american but a greek in this
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thing. and this is themistocles. the athens empire is then i about persians the iranians of today. they're but to cancer athens, his city state. he has be power of persuasion convinces his captains to go and fight a battle in which they are outnumbered five, perhaps ten to one in. that the rowing captains of that day launched. here's the advantage them -- he had. all of the rowers were free men. no slaves. that persian fleet, five times the size. was rowed by slaves. he said to his captains, tomorrow you must row for you
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family. tomorrow you must row for your city. tomorrow you must row for freedom. and they destroyed that persian fleet. it's an extraordinary story of accomplishment and charisma, but within three years, after that victorious battle, his arrogance overtakes him, and he ended up alienating his countrymen, he's banished from greece, and he ends husband life in the court of of the persian emperor. it's a greek tragedy. and it is a story of how you can be given incredible gifts, but if you allow your egg be and your arrogance -- ego and arrogance toover take them you will metaphorically end up in the court of the persian king.
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let's go to a different part of the world. go to china. where we're now in the year 1400, 1405. the chinese emperor invests in this admiral, zheng he. he was a fleet construct ode wood which explores the south china sea, the indian ocean, and to give you a point of comparison about europeans and chinese, look at the shipses in the upper right. see that massive wooden number one that's the scale of zheng he's flagship which is 500 feet long and has a crew of 600. you see that little toy boat next to it? that's the flagship of christopher columbus. the santa maria which 100 years
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later, in 1492, that's what the europeans were sailing to explore the world. the chinese were sailing massive ships. and by the way, that treasure fleet, that economic juggernaut of the 1400s, looks a lot like china's strategy today, one belt, one road. there's a lot to learn from zheng he but his ability to organize, his ability to fulfill what his boss wants. let's chump to the time of the spanish armada, soar francis drake, saves inland, leaded the british fleet that defeats the spanish armada but in the caribbean he is known as a pirate, a rapist, a murderer, he enslaves, he burns cities, he kills indiscriminately.
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he is perhaps the darkest character of these admirals am patriot, also a pirate. how many of you have been in disney world on the ride, pirates of the caribbean? like everybody. based on sir francis drake. here is my favorite british admiral, vice admiral lord nelson, fights another battle. defeats napoleon's fleet in 1805 in the bat of trafalgar off the coast oversman. i like admiralling in the a lot but a he was about 5'5", tall, man of normal height. but he was fearless in combat. he lost an arm, his right arm in one battle. loss an eye in another battle. and he was beloved by his sailors, he took care of his sailors, and his captains who
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work for him adored him. he was a team builder. wins a battle beloved by sailors, beloved by his captainsful was he perfect? not so much. this is emma hamilton, beautiful, young, actress, we think of her today. he has adulteress affair with her over a number of years, fathers a child out of wedlock, the guy would never get through senate confirmation today. you see that picture of him? manfully looking at the signal because in those days you looked at signal flags to know where to sail your ship. looks good. he was difficult subordinate and i putting the telescope to this bind eye because he doesn't like the order from thed a hill and saying to this flag captain, i don't see any signal there go ahead and come could starboard. this where is the expression, to turn a blind eye, to something
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actually comes from. so a great hero of his country, his moral compass doesn't always sail true north, and a very difficult subordinate. so like all of us, complex character. who else? well, we talk but our friend, alfred thayer mahan, arguably the most intellectually brilliant officer the navy has produced enemy 1880s,-1890s he produces a global strategy for america, not just for the navy but why america needs the owings. it was said an intellectual is a man with spending tack well kell -- spectacles on his knows and winter in his hearth. this is alfred thayer mahan. he is not a loving, giving person, he life balance is not good what he does is think and write and per sue the truth
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wherever it -- pursue the truth. he creates the naval war college, arguably the most important of our war colleges and military educational institutions. so not a warm, chummy figure. he is a miserable commander at sea, commands a ship badly once but, boy, is he smart. again, that mixture that is character. wholes? here's one not many people know. a british admiral, and his name is jacky fisher, a british admiral at the turn of the last century and what i like but jackie fisher is he comes into the british navy, when there are sailing ships and muzzle loading cannon: by the time he command thursday british navy, it has again from wooden ships, sails and muzzleloading cannon to
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steel hulls, done with cold, moved ton oil, long range fire controlled plat -- informant plat forms, a contemporary of winston churchill and also hugely ego tis tick cal. the only person the room. the person who has to show you how smart he or she is the minute the door opens. so, this mass sir -- massive ego but tried to this brilliant and taste for innovation. let's come back to america. and let's good to i would argue the best admiral in american history, certainly, fleet admiral chester nimitz. come otherwise fredericksburg, texas. land-locked, goes to annapolis, backs a steady growing force
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within the navy, commands the bureau of personnel, he's good a good steady career going on. what happens? 7 december 1941 happens. the pacific fleet is destroyed. the navy and the nation turn to chester nimitz. he is told, pack a bag, go to pearl harbor take command of the pacific neat. the problem is the pacific fleet is sunk. it's at the bottom of pearl harbor. luckily the air carriers were out. there's few sub ma three. the takes command of the pacific fleet, not an gorgeous battleship and his beautiful white service dress uniform. he takes command in a set of khakis with the smell of cordite in the air, watches bodies being pulled out of the smoking hull of the arizona. that's resilience. he squares his shoulder, he
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builds a team, with people like nimitz and macare century takes apart the japanese empire two ships. upper live. that's the arizona, folks. if you have not been to pearl harbor, and gone to the temple of the navy, go. see the arizona. that's the start of world war ii. bottom right, waste that? that's missouri. that's missouri. that is the ship upon which the surrender document of the japanese edge porer was sign. this is the beginning and the end of the second world war. what happened in the middle? chester nimitz. it's a great story of resilience and through the whole period he never raise his voice. he doesn't engage his ego.
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he builds teams. this is the kind of admiral you want. let's jump forward and wrap it up with a few more admirals. zumwalt. was mentioned. i like admiral zumwalt. a big personality. huge eye brows. he was someone who was deep selected to be the chief of naval operations. he was ennovato but not technology. didn't come up with new devices. his innovation was reengineering the navy as a society. he faced the tension in race in the navy in the 70s and faced up in ways that ultimately helped bring us together. he had many, many innovations. the think to know but admiral zumwalt, he was value driven
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every day out his life. woke up saying what's the wright -- right thing to do. a pretty good call this character, hyman rickover in any nuclear submariner ins. he pull this navy into the nuclear age. brilliant, he is iconic, he is very difficult. he is famous for making life hard for everybody around him by demanding that everything be done to perfect specifics. he is a cantankerous but, boy, is he smart. and at the end of the day, he creates the nuclear navy. by the way in the immigrant to the united states. born and russia. the last admiral, grace hopper. in the navy we call her amazing
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grace. world war ii happens. she is a ph.d in mathematics from yale university. brilliant. she is teaching. mathematics at a university. she knows she wants to be in the war effort. ...
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we've got to figure out howro to program this. the idea a program it doesn't exist, computer science doesn't exist. she invents all about. she writes cobalt. still used today. i started writing myself in the 1970s. she was tiny, energetic, always had a smile on her face. somebody you wanted to have a beer with. she was terrificas because she s unafraid to try everything new. intellectual curiosity was her character traits. right about now, your to say okay, admiral, what you think? what are the attributes or character that come out of those admirals? i will hit those quickly and then we will open up our
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comments and questions. first attribute that i believe comes across again and again as a character attribute if you want that big door of leadership to swing from the quality you have to have is this -- empathy. listening better. who's this? you know who that is. he's an officer in the 1930sno from listening or incoming aircraft. it's a very innovative system for its debt.. good leaders are empathetic. that was chester. he walked into the room to listen. before he started to talk. that's a pretty goodo quality n a leader. intellectual curiosity. reading. we talked about this a moment ago, when she died, she had
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10000 books in the two-bedroom apartment in new york city. i have like 5000 books. my wife called a gentle madness. i love books, i love reading but she be also in the apartment with 10000 books, the most complex books of mathematics and engineering as well as detective novels and james bond fiction. she read, she is intellectually curious at all times. there's books i'm reading lately, it's not just nonficti nonfiction, it novels. you want to understand what's going on in china, left in the tension between rural and urban? pickup reading. want to understand what it's like to live as a refugee in syria? check out exit west.
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you want to understand what it's like to live in an authoritarian society? read margaret atwood's latest book. this is the sequel to "the handmaid's tale". it will chill you and it should. fiction allows us to combine with the facts we learn and put us inn this simulator. us inn this simulator. again, i saw in these admirals. values, we have to cherish our failures. democracy, liberty, freedom of speech, freedom of education, freedom of the press, gender equality, racial equality. we execute them imperfectly but they are the right values. i'll give you a very practical
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example of values. look at that beautiful picture. you look at that and think wow, i'm proud of my u.s. navy. someone gave this to me as a gift a couple off decades ago ad i hung up in my office and then i started to look closely at this thing. there's something really wrong about it. look at the first row. you see all of those officers and then look at the sailors, very aligned. look at the second row in that photograph. three people missing, right? anybody who's in the military, if we turn to the junior pc unit to set up a formation, they wouldn't have a gap like that in the second row, right? so where are the chief petty officer's? i got outof a magnifying glass d i finally found them, there are three african-american chief petty officer's. they are all the way in the back of the formation.
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that's the correct reaction. photograph taken in 1949. navy is desegregating, trying to get better. what happened in this photograph? i don't know. i'll give you a highly educated guess, i would guess the second in command of the ship set up the photo and the captain came down from the ship. we know who the captain is, he's right in the center, first row. he's got a grumpy expression on his face. my guess is, 1949, he came down and saw three black faces, they would have been the chief cook on the ship. he said you three, go stand in the back. why do i show you this picture? two reasons. as people of character, we look closely at things and understand exactly what is for us before
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wanted. second, we ought to ask ourselves every day, what am i s doing now that in 50 years is going to look so wrong? that's a good test of character. this is takedown of a group of pirates by french special forces, pretty routine photo. here's what you don't know. thosee are french special force, they landed there by an italian helicopter, refueled by a danish trade, over watched by portuguese, patrol aircraft, under the command of a nato commander in american here's the punchline. we found this with information
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from iran. piracy. it's one thing nations can agree io., they can have different angles. nelson understood that. he built teams better than anyone else. that's an attribute of character. i think this was the last one. beautiful ship. this is the uss maine, it's very famous in naval history for a tragic reason. it's beautiful cruiser blew up in the harbor in 1898. when it blew up, the nation, the united states immediately fell in line with reporting that said this ship was blown up by spanish terrorists. we use that word.
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so what happened? spanish-american war happened. randolph, yellow journalism, we launched into this war. why people died, we acquired colonies, it is not a happy chapter, all things considered. when we salvaged this ship 50 years later, we discovered it had not blown up because of an external mine catch to the hall, it blew up because of an internal boiler explosion. the premise of the spanish-american war was not right. so i'll tell you where you'll find a picture of the main. you find it on the wall in my office, wherever i have been in my career. i keep it there to remindto me that before we lose our temper, before we launch into a work before we make the big decision, we ought to stop and make sure
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we have all the facts. i also keep it there to remind me that no matter how well you think you're doing, your ship can blow up underneath your at any moment. [laughter] that's a good lesson. to wrap it up and then we will open it up. character is hard, it's a lot harder than leadership, rick haver than leadership, rick one mythological reference in all presentations. this pushes a boulder up but the gods punish ship and the boulder rolls back down. characters like that, we try so hard, we make mistakes, a boulder rolls over us. the seas get pretty rough in the boys of character. stay with it, it will come for you if you spend time thinking about the importance of
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character. which i would argue transcend leadership, it's the enabler of leadership. this comes with a quote. i love this photo. taken about five years ago, these are somali migrants, they are standing on a beach in the red sea. what are they doing? they are lifting up their cell phones, flip phones, trying to get a bigger better signal. the flash, newsflash, it does not help. [laughter] metaphorically, what is happening in this photograph? they are reaching light. they want to connect. largernt to connect. world, they want to get to the next step in their journey. this is a photograph of hope. my last thought for you tonight about character comes from napoleon. i love napoleon because short
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people have to stick together at all times. [laughter] if you remembered nothing else, from our evening together in this marvelous library, the center of intellectual art, which probes every day the biggest questions of character, if you remember nothing else, remember this napoleon. napoleon said, a leader is a dealer in hope. a leader is a dealer in hope. everything else i talked about tonight devolves from the inner quiet since of self-confidence that inspires others with hope. not with fear but with hope. a leader is a dealer of hope. that's a heart of character. thank you very much. [applause] thank you. >> thank you. we do have time for a few quick
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questions, we will moderate this, we are tight on time. he flew in from vietnam this morning and he's flying out this evening. our first question will come from one of the many connect with us from the high school navy g otc, what is your question? >> my question is, what would you think for cadets who aren't exactly able to enlist right away but haven't -- they have an aspiration to get back to the country and serve the country, typically those who have high functioning autism or adhd, something that removes them from draining service but they still have the aspiration to want to cause these changes and innovate? >> what a wonderful question. i will answer as follows, i am approached by peoplee often must
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very nicely to say to me, thank you for your service and i appreciate that but here's the answer to your question, there are so many ways to serve this country, certainly in cuneiform. i'm proud of everybody here who's worn uniform or is wearing a uniform. military service is important. how about police, firemen, emts, peace corps volunteers, diplomats, cia officers, schoolteachers in rural california teaching packed classrooms for $48000 a year, you think they are serving the country? i do. nurses and inner-city clinics, lawyers who volunteer to help, people who are accused of crimes. journalists, not always popular
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but let me tell you, i would go into combat in afghanistan, all tricked out with my bulletproof everything into my helmet, thighs on my right and left with big guns, i was actually pretty safe. i would be somebody like richard from the nbc news, standing there in a bulletproof vest and i assure you it wouldn't stop a bullet. you got like a pin pot helmet on, he's risking his life to tell us what's happening. you think he's serving us? i do. way toer is, find a serve within your capacity, within your proclivity, within what works for you, find a way to serve. i asked for everybody tonight, when you see others who are serving the country, stop a schoolteacher and tell him or her, thank you for your service. stop a post man and tell them thank you for your service.
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there's a lot of ways to serve this country. this country. [applause] >> my name is bob, thank>> you r your service. i appreciate that. second, you mention resiliency in regards to this. being such a profound statement of why you believe he's one of the greatest, can you judge on what the characteristics or behaviors that people need to develop resiliency? i just got back from saugus high school, spending time with some of the parents and students and i think it's a great message for all of us on how to become more resilient. >> let me tell you about two of my contemporaries. one of them is famous, one not so much. built on the right, michelle howard on the left. resilience. michelle howard is 4 feet 10 inches tall, african-american,
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she comes from a pretty challenging background, she goes to the naval academy, rises up through the ranks, anybody see the movie captain phillips of taking down the pirates? michelle howard is in command of that mission. goes on to become the first four-star african-american woman in navy history she's a good person. she's a person of immense character and what she overcame in terms of bias is pretty inspirational. real resilience. on the right, bill, it looks like, he's 6-foot two, everything is perfect in my life, so much. right before 9/11, is in a parachuting accident, breaks his back, 9/11 happens, he's in the hospital, all the other seals go off and apply. he comes back from that, works with me at deep blue as a captain and goes on to storied
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career but here's what you may or may not know, he's been fighting leukemia for ten years. he's an incredibly resilient person. regardless of how you think about anything politically, these are two people who have demonstrated extraordinary resilience, one michelle howard under circumstances, very hard for anybody here to understand african-american woman coming through the navy, tiny little person, that's a tough, dec's stacked against you. she broke every ceiling. bill, very common. half the people in this room has faced this medical challenge at one time or another. he does it with grace and with pragmatism and he shows the best
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of resilience and feeling something that's right, but he does it with such grace that i admire him deeply. so resilience is extremely important for all admirals and for all of us. a >> i was one of those at the academy. [laughter] at my 50 year reunion, the buildings look the same. i was wondering, what does the naval academy and other aro to seize is still character in the military officers of the future? military officers of the future? than we were when you and by kind of drifted through the naval academy buying beer and fuzzy's on the weekend. inside joke that but i think today from all the services take issues of character very seriously and at every level, we work hard to make sure our men and women make the right moral choices.
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we have a controversial issue going on right now about special forces, i don't know the details of those cases, i want to focus over here. someone named lieutenant michael perfect, anybody know who he is? is a recipient of the medal of honor in afghanistan, he died in 2008 sealed mission that went terribly wrong. he faced a very difficult moral choice, whether or not to kill a young afghan boy who stumbled onto their patrol. his team, there were four of them, they had aha debate about that, he's going to let us out. michael murphy said we don't kill civilians.
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they let them go. the team was attacked, three died. survivor, he wrote a book called lone survivor. forget about this marco read that story. that's what your military is all about. not this.y [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, we have time for one last question. before we get to that question, i want to make sure you all know, we have copies of the admiral's book, autographed up in the museum store, pick up one on your way out. it makes a terrific christmas present. our last question is gentlemen, what is your question? >> thank you. thank you so very much.h. nixon foundation and nixon library, to everyone, thank you. precisely what we need. allow me one quick section
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question. i need to hear the end. why? talking about character. i would like to ask you is, getting into politics, a desperate time when our country needs character, president nixon, president eisenhower, roosevelt would you consider running? i mean that with complete seriousness. >> i was dented for vice president by hillary clinton and i was invited to trump tower to discuss with donald trump. y think that is to bullets whizzing by my head. [laughter]te .doc my answer is, my answer is,
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be honored to serve the nation again and how that unfolds, i don't know but just as surely asow i ask you cadets, your daughter and my daughters and others to embrace the idea of serving the country in whatever form makes sense to you, i will answer that call again if asked. pleasure to be with you. [applause] [applause] ♪ >> washington internal primetime, special evening edition of the "washington journal". federal response to the coronavirus pandemic. our guest, governor john joins
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us to discuss the covid-19 response in his state. historian, author and commentator doris goodwin will talk about her 2018 book, leadership in turbulent times. drink the conversation tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span sunday night on q&a, wall street trader, turned photojournalist, chris on his book dignity. about the likes of us living on the margins of society in america. >> sunday morning, or saturday, was empty because semi's work gone. her intelligence medially just came right through. we spoke for about an hour, half an hour or so. she told me her life which is like a cliché everything from that can happen to somebody. eventually, i asked her right
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asked everybody i photographed, if you want me to describe you, give me one sentence. she shot back, i am a prostitute, mother of six and child of god. >> sunday night eight eastern on c-span's q&a. >> welcome. i want to welcome everyone to this bookshop. we in the entire staff are happy to have you all here, it's an honor to host this event. my name is linda, i'm the owner of this bookshop. we are happy to be in a community that support our local businesses as well as our local nonprofits. this one is a special one today. it's my honor to introduce you


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