tv President Reagans Cold War Strategy CSPAN July 30, 2018 2:56pm-4:50pm EDT
floor, fighting one another. >> one of the members who had a wig, one of the members pulled his wig off during the fight. and someone else yelled "he scalped him." that was enough levity to stop the fight. [ laughter ] >> congressional historians richard baker, donald ritchie and ray smoth sunday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span's "q and a." coming up next from the heritage foundation, a panel discussion on president ronald reagan's cold war strategy with a focus on how his peace through strength philosophy reduced strategic warheads in the united states and soviet union. this is 5babout two hours. [ applause ] thank you, becky. and congratulations and thanks for running this series on the
reagan legacy honoring the reagan legacy and trying to teach to new generations like those i see in front of me, almost everybody is younger than i, the lessons, the initiatives of his decisions. also a bit about the difficulties he had within the administration and in the congress and of course with the media and the academy where he was still by and large not necessarily in the bureaucracy, but he was called incompetent, a warmonger, a conservative, a republican, which were not so popular with the established leaders in the institutions they mentioned. that's forgotten now. it's also called for some reason the '80s were called the me decade. i think it was the we decade. i think the next one was the me decade.
and he came to this job as president very well prepared. and usually well prepared. first of all, he started out as a lifeguard and they have to make decisions quickly. matters of life and death. it was also during the second world war an actor who made films for the american troops on how and why to fight the totalitarians of japanese and the national socialists of germany. they were called nazis. they were not fascists. they were run by mr. mussolini in italy. and as far as i know, the italian fronts were not very active. so he fought nationalism and socialism, and i think communism and national socialism are strongly related. he early turned on anti-communists because of the actors union in 1947 and during
that period was being infiltrated, and he knew there were active measures by the soviets, in addition to the fact that they were colonizing eastern europe, stalinizing it. so he was a freedom fighter. and the platform that he wrote and i participated in it, there were four of us who did the final versions. i was working with the senator of the republican policy committee, bill snyder, john lehman, bud mcfarland, and we worked with bill van claef in the transition and the campaign. and you aught to read that platform. i have it in my book as a major first statement of reagan's strategy. and incidentally the section that deals with foreign policy, foreign affairs is called peace and freedom. so i talk about his strategy as being the strategy of peace and
freedom through strength. you are absolutely interconnected. and he knew there couldn't be peace without freedom and not freedom without peace. you couldn't as a non-freedom fighter fight for peace and give it maybe a totalitarian version. so the platform on which he ran, in which nobody seemed to remember now, in which during the first days of the administration i read parts of it, excerpts when i went as a representative to the inner agency meetings, which were chaotic. there was no discipline. everybody said whatever they felt like. there was no guidance. and the president's first crisis meetings were in areas i did not work. i worked in what was called the defense cluster.
and i took the mantle of arms control. that didn't come until about march/june. let me just say in the platform, we worked on it, put arms control into the defense section, not into the form of the first section of defense. and if you read the guidance on arms control and the platform and in all of the president's speeches, it was always an issue of defense. you can't do arms control without securing, providing for the common defense, and that was way behind very much depleted, very weak, because of the procrastination and confusion of the carter administration which proceeded him who had cut back major programs, especially strategic modernization, nuclear things. and these were all called out by the president. and so arms control was not treated at the beginning as a major separate issue. it was treated, the first priority that the administration
had, this is visible already in march of '81. a few months into his inauguration was plussing up the defense budget. modernizing it. so secretary weinberger was capped captain ike, but he became a very strong supporter of strong defense. 17% increase in the budget and specifically funding the programs that carter had cut and the missile programs. and that is the bomber program. and also implying that became explicit later on. that the framework of arms control that mr. carter had, and quite specifically, it was the arms treaty of 1979, it was no e longer the guiding way of talking to the soviets.
that treaty was withdrawn by mr. carter because of the soviet invasion of afghanistan and all kinds of negotiations stop. and this actually gave us an opportunity to mr. reagan. i call him mr. because that's what we called him. he was informal enough when you talked to him. and even when you were in high falutant places, with high cabinet people, he was very informal. he would ask questions of people. and he was really funny, too. and he was quite decisive once he had the options laid out for him verbally and in the short papers we had to write. i would write a one-page summary of a seven of eight-page interagency plotting paper and cover the things that we had called bracketed language, which means diversions, opposition.
and he loved to have those spelled out, maybe on the second page of some differences in the inner agency system, the state department was always contesting of the defense sites. a, he was worried about certain things, the jcs had their own views, and he tried to integrate. and i believe he successfully integrated. we has a staff tried to integrate and did succeed. defense, arms control and things that have not yet mentioned, which he also integrated, in very committed to, the moral aspects that we were doing and the strategic. so the ethical things were also tied in on the freedom concepts. so western civilization, freedom, in the united states particularly, but also really in england and other democracies.
that was always the perspective from which he did whatever he did. in a sense, he was a lifeguard for his country, because his initiatives turned things around. the assumptions were turned around. how do you deal with the soviet union? all the concessions, the kissy kissy kumbaya approach of the previous decade didn't work. and in the area of nuclear weapons n particular, he was very well aware when he became president already as a campaigner that the treaty signed by mr. nixon, and i happened to value mr. nixon as a president. i worked for him in the white house. i worked for mr. johnson, mr. nixon and jerry ford in the white house. i was on the nsc. i was there longer than anybody else in the country. i think bob gates comes next. and in a summit in 1972, nixon signed three treaties.
the first was the start treaty, which basically froze some numbers but didn't make real reductions and was not verifiable beyond the national technical means. means no on-site inspections. and the second treaty was the anti-ballistic missile treaty, which i already then opposed very strongly on moral grounds, because it was wedded to the doctrine of mutually assured destruction. i personally as a staff member and as some of you experienced war firsthand, first as a child and then in second world war europe. the first americans i met were bombing the hell out of my neighborhood because i was a british child hostage in germany. and it seemed to me that the next americans i met who included my own father who had escaped and come back as an american soldier killing and liberating his former
countrymen, that one had to be very much aware of preventing totalitarians from using this as a bargain chip as military superiority and they are cheating. and the russians cheated on almost everything they did. certainly in arms control. so when we re-examined in the spring of '81 and '82 and then through '82, what to do with the russian asymmetric -- look at the chart i have on the wall there. it prevents when the russians built and built. and we especially after signing the summit agreements, but to our mention, the third one is being a peaceful co-existence, principles of the detente agreement. mr. nixon had correctly tried to link these things, but i think he should not have signed on to curtailing our defenses, defense
missiles. as we banned by the abm treaty. we should have been very robust on it. and the strategic initiative defense that becky mentioned before was a part and parcel of arms control. to me, it was the greatest arms control initiative that has ever been offered, because it prevents offensive missiles from being used against you. by the way, it is very expensive. so these were linked together from the start in reagan's mind and in our mind. and the people who fought either modernization like the mx missile, and they -- these things were linked in our mind.
you had to have modernization and you had to have reductions in arms control. in arms you had the effective verification, which is the new standard we got the president to sign on to. not adequate verification, but effective. and i defined it and that was adopted as the cia having high confidence, high confidence, not just confidence, high confidence in being able to monitor and verify every single provision in the darn treaties that we proposed. we also got through this, this was in 1982, the notion of having the jcs have to certify the military's efficiency of everything we did in arms control. would the united states still be able to fend off and would it prevail in new attacks? it was a new standard. and the proposals made at eureka
in 1982, deep cuts, deep reductions. they had been proceeded, however, by the imf treaty, which was in '81 in the fall. where we did not favor in the nsc any way, the pentagon and nsc did not favor the nuclear freeze option. and proposed instead a zero option where we got the systems that we didn't want, mainly the soviet ss20 out of the way, by going down to zero ourselves and having eliminating a whole class of systems. that was a very strong new approach. and it just shook the whole soviet attitude and system about postponing, procrastinating, and they thought we couldn't hold the allies. but one of the things is, i got
myself invited in the first nato meeting by secretary weinberger to be on a plane with him in his delegation and others. and we really briefed and worked the allies to get out of the nuclear freeze, which was dominating their parliaments and their streets. and to get the deploy of the new imf systems and the nuclear systems. it was followed in march of 1983 by the strategic defense initiative. this was a parcel of that, to get us national systems for defense. i have other charts. and if i had an hour, i would run through some of the things that then happened. i'll just mention one other thing, which is in the area of nuclear testing. nuclear testing. the -- when we came into the white house, the state department and others who also
mostly favored the freeze, wanted to go for comprehensive test band, they wanted ratification immediately of two treaties that mr. ford had done, limited test band and threshhold test band treaties, no, peaceful nuclear exposure treaty, and there was a test ban treaty that was apparently not being complied with. and all these treaties for disbanding nuclear tests, even down to the subcritical levels, tiny little ones underground, reagan who was not a nuclear abolitionist at all, although one of the most senior people in the reagan administration wrote a book in which he constantly says reagan wanted to abolish nuclear weapons. he didn't. he wanted a nuclear deterrent and wanted to abolish the threat of nuclear weapons. and he said, as a long-term
objective, we, of course, live in a less dangerous world, and linked it with the free world, with a brief form of radical change in the soviet posture. we could consider that. and when he said, no nuclear war can be won, must ever be fought or cannot be won. and he said that twice at the u.n. and in japan of all places in 1983, that's what he meant. we must use our weapons for deterrence. we must use them as an incentive for arms control, for arms reductions. and we must have those effectively verified and supported by the congress. he didn't do what nixon did with the treaty who didn't care -- dare submit it to the congress because they would not have passed it. and carter withdrew his from the congress. reagan, when he had arms reductions and arms control and programs brought them to the
congress, and we were up there briefing all the time and negotiating with the congress, his political opposition, his academic and clerical opposition, and it worked. it worked sufficiently to put pressure, not on the first three soviet prime ministers that were encountered by reagan, but on mr. gorbachev, who was a party intellectual. didn't quite understand what hit him when reagan came. and certainly didn't understand how quickly we were building up our forces after a very dormant period. i believe gorbachev lost his cool when he tried to undertake necessary reforms, redoing everything, with the party. just like what the chinese are doing. just keep the party in control, reform it. but once you open up a society
with something called glasnost, you're going to use the totalitarian ability to shoot and imprison the opposition. and when the chinese in 1989, towards the end of reagan's period, shot in 62 cities people rising against that totalitarian system, what gorbachev did when the wall was threatened and when eastern european uprisings became real, he lost the nerve to shoot. the reason i think he did is he realized already a little bit before that, that his economic system of socialism, and they called it the socialist camp, they didn't call it the communist camp, wasn't working. it couldn't keep up. a free world, a free economy, a free political parliamentary system, free labor unions, that's necessary to make progress, to make radical change possible.
and mr. gorbachev was intelligence enough but not cruel enough to react to the fact that he was going to be losing his whole faith, his foundations as to where his partners who were running the soviet union for 40 or 50 years. and that lenin's truths were not truth and so on. he caved, and he caved enough so that there was a coup attempt against him. i believe in the '90s and for the next decade for sure, the united states wasted its cold war victory and so did the al allies. what i see today in russia makes me worry all the time. you could take that chart i have on the wall and update it for you. we are in a tough situation. and the chinese have not stopped producing new lines of weapons,
and the russians certainly have tried to dominate or infiltrate their neighbors. so what we need are freedom and strategic criteria. and then we can get close to what reagan did and i think ahmad the fact that he provided for the common defense and secured the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity. [ applause ] >> good morning. i had the privilege in the 1980s to work for someone who was
certainly the greatest american president of the 20th century, and one of the greatest in american history. as just everyone of the speakers on this panel have, and they all i would add made a major contribution to the development of very sensible and very important policies that ultimately contributed to the demise of the soviet union, prevented a nuclear war, and advanced american interests across the board. as noted, there are efforts today to portray ronald reagan as a nuclear zero president. i mean, that's nonsense. reagan advanced an approach to dealing with the soviet nuclear threat, which fundamentally changed what was going on in the
1970s. it was called at the time peace through strength. i believe that's a pretty good description of what he was talking about. his policies involved the modernization of all legs of our nuclear triad in a matt they are enhanced national security and strategic stability. they went beyond that. he deployed nuclear slickhams widely. the ship launched cruise missiles widely. he deployed the medium-range nuclear missiles to europe that resulted in the imf treaty. and he deployed new nuclear artillery. so to call him a nuclear zero guy is complete nonsense. and as noted, he pursued arms
control that was seen in terms of defense policy, rather than as an end of itself or an idealogical quest for some utopia. reagan's strategic defense initiative revived the rather morbund missile defense program of the carter era and began to develop the technologies that pro tekt us against north korea and our allies against the growing theater of a wmd attack. i would ask you to consider where we would be today if our missile capabilities were based on carter's legacy.
that was a fundamental change in direction under reagan. the world that reagan inherited in 1981 was bipolar and very dangerous. many of the threats we see today were already developing, but they were not yet deemed as serious. the soviet union was an idealogical hostile communist dictatorship, in the process of spending itself in oblivion in war preparations, made worse by the debilitating effects of socialism on their economy. during the bush administration, then russian defense minister stated that in the 1980s, the soviet military budget reached 40% of the soviet gdp, which is incredible when you put it in
comparison to u.s. u.s. peaked of 43% of gnp during world war ii. from that point it declined to 5% in the carter administration, which of course, produced what was called a hollow army. we use technology in the 1980s to compensate for the large disparity and the level of effort that was going on, particularly in the nuclear arena. president reagan presented the soviet union with a significant military challenge that convinced them that they could not win, although they never
gave up trying to create that sort of capability. faced with a massive nuclear buildup by the soviet union, president reagan engaged in the most comprehensive u.s. modernization since the 1980s. although it wasn't i believe even remotely compared to the scale of the soviets, it did create a very effective deterrent to nuclear war. the administration continues to lay carter administration policies on current systems that included the bmx or peacekeeper icbm, the agm 86-b nuclear
alcom, and the ohio class ballistic missile submarines and the tritemperature twtrident tw. for a time, the so-called midget man icbm was part of the nuclear modernization program. fortunately much was terminated or dramatically reduced by subsequent administrations, which made a series of bad decisions on nuclear deterrence and national security policies, which, in some respects, contribute to the current crisis we have with putin's russia. president reagan's planned
strategic nuclear force was reduced by 85% in terms of warhead numbers, the mx, later called the peace kean keeper an advanced cruise missile were terminated without any replacement. as was the nuclear capability of the b1 bomber. the program was terminated and retired without replacement. the only parts of the reagan nuclear modernization that survived subsequent administrations was the ohio class submarines without the warheads planned under the reagan administration and 22 b-2 bombers, without their missiles. i believe president reagan would have adjusted downward on
nuclear deterrence requirements at the end of the cold war. he would have never allowed a 20-year moratorium on u.s. nuclear deterrent modernization or allow the russians to get a tenfold advantage in nontra ste -- nonstrategic nuclear weapons. the weapons that were pulled out of europe as part of the presidential nuclear initiative were mainly built and put there by the reagan administration. the 2018 nuclear posture review confirms reports that go back to 2004, that "russia is in violation of an equivocal commitment that directly effect the security of others, including the 1991 presidential nuclear initiatives. these eliminating our
battlefield and much of our nonstrategic naval strike capability. the pni is a major reason that russia has a 10-1 advantage today in the number of tactical nuclear weapons. we know that reagan would have taken action in the face of such a violation. because he actually did with regard to somewhat similar issues that arose during the 19700st and 1980s. reagan took nuclear deterrence very seriously. and missile defense is part of his deterrent strategy. and a major hedge in arms control. the reagan nuclear modernization
program that was not done to finance the military industrial complex, but rather to deal with a nuclear threat through deterrence, and that threat was very real. and actually worse than we thought it was in the time period. today, you can find the warsaw pact, or at least major parts of the war plan on the internet. they've been made available. then secretary of defense casper weinberger stated in his annual report through the congress in 1985, "if we are to maintain a
responsible nuclear deterrent against attack on our allies, as well as against nuclear attacks on the united states, we have to continue to exploit our comparative advantage in technology." since the send of the reagan administration, we have allowed this to erode. indeed, laden in the obama administration, senior pentagon officials talked about our losing our lead in technology. and they were talking about generally, not about nuclear in specific. in the nuclear area, we have allowed our position to decline, because we retired some of the most advanced systems that were developed and deployed under the reagan administration and in the years -- some of them in the years and beyond that. today, russia and china have massive nuclear modernization programs. and that's a description of the
russia program by the russian defense ministers by 2017. in 2016, the obama administration told the congress that the chinese have announced the existence of a new nuclear version of a df-irbm which would give china nuclear precision strike capability. we have none at this point in time at any level. we do not have a single deployed precision nuclear weapon. who would have believed that was going to happen in the 'ya1980s? it happened because we reversed reagan's nuclear deterrence policy. the 2018 nuclear posture i think is the best government discussion of the nuclear
deterrence problem and it deals with problems that -- it also deals with problems that are post reagan. but i believe the statement you will read if you go back and read of the reagan administration statements to congress on defense and here you have special kudos to frank miller, who also spoke these things, they are really high quality and they have continued relevance to deterring russia today. the reagan administration's sven cramer pointed out that they broke with the '70s approach to arms control as then the assistant secretary of defense richard perle stated we have to have cheer objectives, militarily significant outcomes and agreements that are verifiable.
he pointed out that the charge of lack of seriousness by the reagan administration on arms control amounts to little more than we must -- to retain a vastly larger strategic arsenal than the levels the administration has proposed. the people who criticized reagan on arms control came to power in 1993. they failed to get the start two treaty, which was negotiated by the george h.w. bush administration, and ratified and into force. and they failed in their efforts to conclude a start three treaty, which was to go beyond that. they did manage to negotiate the only arms control agreement to be rejected by a majority of the senate, the comprehensive test
banner or cbtb. this is a classic example about how the approach of the reagan administration saw arms control as a part of a security ajeblag not an idealogical crusade. in the '80s, there was only a single nuclear weapons designer at the national laboratories, that you could maintain a nuclear deterrent. even with testing allowed up to the one kiloton or 1,000 tons of tnt as level. in a 2012 talk delivered at the heritage foundation, the -- at
the time of the attempted ratification, he was the trek for of the national laboratory. he said in 1995, "we in the u.s. have requested that the permitted test level should be sent at a level which is, in fact, lower than one kiloton limit, which would have allowed us to run some very important experimen experiments and determine whether the thermo nuclear weapons were operating successfully. the first stage fails, you basically have a dud. reagan revolutionized our approach to arms control compliances.
he actual lly responded to russn violations of threaties by canceling u.s.ed ed adherence t them. we didn't enter into arms control agreements in the 1980s without serious preparation and certification that everything he tabled by the joint chiefs of staff. that didn't happen in the obama administration, it ended up with a treaty that allows almost unlimited expansion. whatever the russians can afford. i guess i've about run out of time. so i would leave you with one final thought.
reagan's approach to national security i think served us very well, and the abandonment of his policies by subsequent administrations has contributed to the current security crisis. if you're reversioning a reagan policy on national security, perhaps not 100% of the time, but a substantial percent of the time, you're making the wrong decision. thank you. [ applause ] >> thank you very, very much. both of these presentations are excellent. just thank you so much for being here, both of you. you know, the heritage foundation is very fortunate when we host programs like this to have co-sponsors or co-hosts. and i want to acknowledge today that the reagan alumni
association is one of our co-hosts, and the american foreign policy council is a co-host. the third co-hosting group is the mitchell institute for aerospace studies of the afa. i'm going to invite the representative of that group, peter doosy, to come and introduce the panel. peter was active with senator nun on capitol hill and a proponent of the reagan policies during the '80s and continues to be so today. peter, please come up. >> thank you all for coming here. i want to say thank you to becky. when which went and sat next to each other at a conference i think back in october of last year, i said to her, we really have to regain reagan's legacy and she said, i had the same idea yesterday. that's how this was born. she said would you like to handle the national security and defense aspects of reagan's
legacy? before i introduced my wonderful guests here, i want to lay out a couple of things. i want to say hello to jan nolan at george washington university. we do a project together. and my friend who is now retired, who invited me over a period of six years to lecture at the naval academy on nuclear deterrence. i was extraordinarily honored to do that. i went back and looked at a 1979 house and armed services committee report on nuclear weapons. this is before the soviets invaded afghanistan. every single nuclear weapons program was cut from the budget request, everything from the b-52, the b-1. for mx missile, there was no procurement money, including the
deep five and the ohio class submarine. then i looked at 1981. the first question at a press conference was, do you believe in keeping the s.a.l.t. two treaty, which had been withdrawn by president carter. we were under no legal obligation to abide by it. the president said basically how can you call that arms control? because as we all know, it allowed a buildup to about 13,000 nuclear warheads under the treaty. and you -- i was sitting in the back of the room against the wall where they put young people that were guests and i was doing public diplomacy, you could hear the gasp among the press corps about the fact that he said, i don't want to abide by s.a.l.t. two. the question question was from the head of the upi, do you believe in peaceful
co-existence. the president said no. and again, the audible gasps from the audience was extraordinary. the president laid out what it was the soviets were up to during peaceful co-existence. he said, i have a better idea, we win, they lose. in 1981, we then inherited a narrative that we soul do s.a.l.t. 2 and accept peaceful co-existence. that's 1981. what about 2017? we inherited the idea that the only way to go on nuclear weapons was towards zero. by the same team that said we should maintain s.a.l.t. 2. many of the same people. then it was go to 13,000 warheads for the soviets, now we're going to go to zero. the other thing is, we shouldn't
modernize. that was the commonality. that arms control, we don't need the missiles. and what's fascinating is that in 19 79, at the height of the cold war, the house and senate were cutting every sickngle weapons system, even though -- i think in that context, looking at where you are today, the revolution that reagan created, which was instead of looking at the nuclear freeze as a means to get rid of everything, he looked at reductions as thor is pent of modernization, so we modernized while reducing opposed to freedz i -- freezing. that's why i've asked some of my dear friends who are the top
people in this business to come here and speak. first will be frank miller, who headed the office of secretary of defense between 1981 and 1989. now he's a principal at schofield. i was a consultant to the secretary of the air force and the special assistant for peacekeeper, general gordon fornell. we'll hear from susan cook from space arms control between 1985 and 1988, as well as assistant between 1982 and 1985. these threat extraordinary
people will now talk to you about not only their reaction to what our guests have said, but their perspective on the reagan administration nuclear policy. but how they -- what are the implications for today as we face some really very, very serious and very challenging problems. so first, welcome my dear friend, frank miller. [ applause ] >> thanks, peter. thanks for having me. and becky, thanks for having me. let me start by saying that i am really thrilled to see all of the younger people in the audience, because over the past several months, as i've made oh, about 20 public appearances defending the nuclear posture, it turns out that there is a lack of understanding and knowledge about the past and
what u.s. nuclear policy is and what it is not. i'm really glad that you're here so that you can take part in this session and learn from it. i spent 1981 as an action officer in the office of theater of nuclear policy, where i was working on the reagan administration's review of neutron bombs and the cruise missiles. in october of 1981, richard perle asked me to head up the stra tetegic policies office. it's important to set the context for the reagan period. before mr. reagan was elected, there was a belief in some quarters, that the soviet leadership anticipated achieving superiority by the mid '80s. the united states that lost the will in the strategic nuclear
area. so it was an enormous change to that situation. when president reagan took office, he said some of the things that were mentioned earlier. and in october of '81, he issued two documents, which were absolutely critical in turning things around. the first, i'm going to do this in reverse. the second was national security document 13, which was the u.s. nuclear targeting policy. that is the presidential document that tells the department of defense how to
handle its nuclear targeting plans. the document retained the focus of the presidential directive of '59 from tlast year of carter's presidency after the scales dropped from president carter's eyes after the invasion of afghanistan. what this change did was to move away from something that prevailed during the '70, which is deterrence policy was based on mirror imaging. and the pd-59 work, which was carried forward by president reagan to focus on what the soviet leadership thinks and values, and look where they spend their money and that will tell you what's important to them. it was such a good document, it was so properly broadly written at a presidential level, that it guided u.s. nuclear weapons policy until 1996.
that's an extraordinary run of 15 years for targeting policy. one of the things that it did was to kickstart a program of continuity of government. that is to say come up with a mechanism, whereby even in the event of a soviet attack, the constitutional government of the u.s. would survive. that's important to send a signal that they could not decapitate the united states of america. and that we would still be able to respond effectively to any russian's nuclear use and to deter of that use. there was some unfortunate language in the to bement that in the context said that we must be prepared to fight a protracted nuclear war. and that we would wage nuclear war successfully. that was a bit overblown in its
rhetoric. the president reacted swiftly to turn that around. but it was made all the more powerful by its connection with msdd-12, issued the same day, and that made cheer the reagan administration's commitment to build a strong nuclear determ. it stood in sharp contrast to what many saw of the carter administration's plans, dithering in decisions, and it fully modernized the entire triad. and most importantly in my judgment, it brought about the introduction of the trident d-5 nuclear missile, still in the force today. that is a system which can hold any soviet, russian, or other target at risk, hardened or
otherwise. and it broke the back once deployed in the 1989-1990 of soviet nuclear strategy. now we had a survivable sea-based hard target kill weapon. there was the nsdd-12 also authorized proceeding with the nuclear sea launch cruise missile. we had proceeded with tomahawk sea launch cruise missiles, which came in three versions, a nuclear land attack version, a conventional hand attack version that no one had mump interest in. and an anti-ship version. throughout 1981, the statement department tried to kill the whole tomahawk sea launch cruise missile program. a point guy reminded people in 1990 as we used hundreds of home
talks to take down saddam's invasion of kuwait. so the up by a modernization plan. the second area was in its public posture. there was an early recognition of the appeal of the nuclear freeze movement. and president reagan moved quickly to clarify that he believed, classic quote, a nuclear war can never be won and must never be fought. it was possible for president reagan to have two apparently conflicting views in his head. one is that we had to have a strong nuclear deterrent to deter nuclear war. the other was that he hated nuclear weapons. the
the president was horrified by the notion that nuclear weapons might be used against the american public. so he did have this quest. in this public posture, the department of defense at the urging of the president took a very strong and clear public line. secretary wineberger sent a letter to newspapers around the country saying we don't believe in fighting a nuclear war, we believe in preventing it. following that he participated in an extraordinary exchange of letters with a left of center gentleman named theodore draper that addressed in great detail why the administration believed deterrence was important. and his testimony in december 1982 in front of the senate foreign relations committee, it makes clear this is all
aboabou about preventing nuclear war, not fighting one. the annual statements of the secretary of defense to congress were clear and concise statements on the purpose of u.s. nuclear forces, how deterrence worked and why we need a triad. they are the best public statements that exist to justify the existence of u.s. nuclear forces until the nuclear posture review of 2018. very clear statements as to why we need these kinds of systems. at the same time, the administration published for eight years a book called soviet military power, which presented to the american public a series of facts as to what the soviets were doing. you find today in the debate
that we're having on npr a lack of knowledge about what the russians and the chinese are up to such that you even get people saying that the nuclear posture review is going to start a new nuclear arms race, ignoring that no new u.s. system enters the field until the late 2020s. the soviets were engaged in building some very secret deep underground command posts. we basically declassified and fuzzed up what they were doing and said we know what you're doing, we can target you there too. the administration had a deep commitment to nato. you can see that in the commitment to the inf systems and even the revival of the enhanced radiation weapons. you can see it in the sale to
the united kingdom. the reagan administration took a radical approach to arms negotiations. susan cook is going to talk to you about that. it was basically reduce, don't cap. eliminate throw away. that was much maligned and ridiculed at the time, but it cut the heart out of half of the soviet icbm force. i will disavgree regarding some of the reductions made in the president bush 41 administration as well as some of the retirements. i have a very different view on those. there was a willingness in the
administration at the same time to review the nuclear arsenal and eliminate obsolete and unnecessary weapons. if you look, you can see the nuclear planning group in 1983 and the elimination of the ge e genie. also the administration demonstrated a willingness to go all in this support of its strategic systems. when we had the big fights in congress on the mx, the president was involved, the leadership of the defense department was involved. secretary weinberger eninsured tho -- authorized a complete overhaul of the nuclear war plans and recast all of those plans to be consistent with
policy, because war plans had become inconsistent with presidential policy. there were two big surprises and i'm going to stop speaking now so i can give my colleagues some time. two big surprises that i was involved in. the first was the strategic defense initiative for which macfarland and i wrote the speech. and then the summit with gorbachev. those are thinks we can save for q & a. so thanks very much. [ applause ] >> peter, thanks very much for hosting this and thank you all for coming and taking time to
learn about some history and some future conditions which are part of the legacy that ronald reagan and a lot of people that worked for him brought to bear to keep the country safe in a very perilous time when we had fallen behind our enemies who were very aggressive and thought they were going to run the tables and take over and were getting careless in the use of their military power and even their nuclear weapons. they thought they could use them and win, which is a very dangerous thing, because that's how wars start is through miscalculation basically. this is very important. it's good you've taken the time to read through this material. i want to mention a couple of
macro things briefly. i'm going to go fast so there's more time for questions. as you all know -- and i took a key from the very good big tone put together about the red menace. i call it the red pandemic which began really with marx in the mid 1850s through stalin in the 1930s. briefly we were allied in world war ii to stop another big threat, the fascists, germany, italy and so forth. there was after that the rise of the reds, both in china, russia. china falls, nato is created. the u.s. strategic forces are created and the doctrine is promulgated of massive retaliation initially to make up for our weak conventional forces, flexible response later,
containment, collective defense are formulated. proxy wars in korea and vietnam and other places take place as the expansion proceeds. then there's the red spread and red schism. the chinese and russians fall apart over the russian expansion mainly. the chinese opening to us terms such as detente discussions in various countries. communism continued to spread but at the same time it was broken up a little bit by the moves of richard nixon in going to china in 1969 and kissinger. then there was red rollback. that's when i got a little more involved and got involved with all these fine people who have done so much over the years to
keep the american people educated and able to understand and keep the press honest regarding what's really going on with strategic nuclear forces in the various countries, including our own. 1981 is a fine period beginning when reagan became president, brought his personal convictions and principles and infused his political skills into the professional conservative national security community that had begun to some degree under nixon and ford. an important aside, it must be noted that under nixon and ford there were strong efforts by sl rumsfeld. when he changed the strategic
integrated operations plan, i was part of that. there were three options at the time, counter force, counter city, or everything. that included the warsaw pact, russia and so forth, pretty much like dropping a meat ax on the prop if we were attacked. so we rewrote it to 24 options. they said that's too many. so we had to reduce it to 12. that's when selective and flexible nuclear response and people started thinking about, well, maybe nuclear war can be fought a little bit. maybe you can strike the soviet forces in the warsaw pact, just in the ussr, the ally forced, some cities, just naval forces. that's the way the thing was rewritten in the mid '70s as well as leadership target which
is we worked on very much with democrat -- demographic groups because the soviet union is run by great russians, white russians and russians and everybody else. the guys that run everything are in a pretty culturally tribal sort of group and they want to keep running things. we let them know that we knew where they all were and there were only about 12 million in the super inside group and we pretty much had that group completely targeted. so we were going to take them out and let everybody else just overrun them if it came down to nuclear war. that got their attention, interestingly enough. it wasn't just the leadership. it was the whole leadership, the
whole crowd. during that period, some great things happened when carter came into power after the '70s when things began to be recognized by nuclear forces. these gentlemen here and ladies were part of things such as a committee on president danger, the madison group, team b which began to expose the weakness of the carter administration policies, the debate and defeat of salt 2. then these ladies and gentlemen became very edge kaucated and s on these issues so they could staff the reagan nsc, the defense of defense and so on. we wrote a little book to get things ready, a program for military independence we wrote in 1979 as part of the madison group that was pretty much the beginning of the reagan defense
policy which was translated into a chapter here for a mandate for leadership in 1980 at the h heritage foundation which became a guide for the campaign. he said i'm going to be the secretary of defense. i said i'm sorry. you're used to being at hhs. you shouldn't be the secretary of defense. he said i need it and i want it. i said, well, i can't get it for you. he said i image you have some gall at home. i said i do. he said send them out here. then he couldn't read it. he called and said i can't answer the damn thing. i thought this was not the guy
to be the secdef. he said we need a glossary at the end of the chapter. so i had to do a glossary real fast and send that out. later i got to see him in the pentagon when i went over there to work. i'm going to have to move along because i know i'm taking too much time with anecdotes. there was a period when we were really the dominant force of course with reagan and we got lucky for a while before everybody sprung back into action against us. the reagan legacy. reagan had a lot of personal experience from his work and leadership of the screen actors guild. he knew what the communists could do. but he had strong political convictions from that and knew that he could defeat them because he had defeated them to some degree in hollywood. he hung in there. he had focus, charm and
political skills as well. so he didn't get rattled. he was hard line but he didn't look intemperate and that was important in keeping the conversation somewhat civil. he got a unified national security strategy put in place by a lot of smart people here at the pentagon and nfc. he kept things moving along so that things got done. he and his staff got where they knew the enemy, they knew the strengths and weaknesses objectively and they would keep messaging optimism even though we were in a perilous situation. you have to look like you're willing to execute on a nuclear strike plan. you have to keep updating the
strike plan to relate to new threats and weapons on the other side. and you have to create and find other political levers that are economic, personal embargo sanctions used to keep pressure on the foreign leaders. the degree that you can find a way to put pressure on them outside of the nuclear forces arena, then you can also dissuade them a little bit more from thinking about using nuclear weapons. reagan had a very fortunate blend of personal charm, background, experience, courage and willingness and intellectual capability to learn about this, to adapt to some of the great knowledge and courage and perspectives that many of the people here in this room at the heritage foundation. it was a great privilege to be
part of that and very interesting, very exciting. a lot of interesting stories of course that go with that period of time. i'll stop there and let susan talk. she'll tell you how they got things going. [ applause ] >> i'll try to be very quick, partly because it's a great advantage being last. i can say, yes, what they said. perhaps just a few examples on the reagan approach to arms control. we talked about peace through strength. this is negotiating through strength. the path breaking reagan achievements in arms control
would not have been possible without our modernization programs. second was an emphasis on not just numbers, but stabilizing force structures and how arms control could contribute to that. the inf treaty is 1987. a really good example of you have to have something to negotiate with. the nato position, the global zero option was very clear, very simple. if the soviets retained their intermediate range missiles, we would deploy. if they gave them up, we would. and that option was criticized by many, including in the u.s. government as being you don't really want arms control because the soviets will never accept that. same for the other big feature of the inf treaty which was
unprecedented intrusive verification. i think there were seven different types of on site inspection plus data exchanges, a permanent presence at the ss 20 production facility. the soviets will never accept that. well, we gave them a reason to accept that. they did not want cruise missiles in europe. when we started deploying in november of 1983, the soviets walked from the negotiations thinking we'd say, oh dear, we're sorry and please come back. no. we kept deploying. so a little over a year later, they said, okay, we'll start negotiating again and you got the inf treaty. of course now the russians are violating it, but that's maybe a story we can talk about a bit.
stabilizing features, really clear in the start one treaty and the start two treaty signed under george h.w. bush, but the groundwork was set in the negotiations under reagan. you've got heavy bomber counting rules to give an advantage to slow flying stabilizing systems. you had a reduction by one-half in heavy icbms, a ban on future icbms, a limit of ten war heads. so reductions in the most dangerous destabilizing systems. you go farther with start 2 where the sides agreed to abolish all merveed icbms.
i can't imagine that the russians would have accepted that if we didn't have peacekeeper. thereaft thereafter, the arms control after start 2, those features, those major features that were part of the reagan legacy get very much weakened. the moscow treaty of 2002 is just about numbers. and then new start has verification, but it's weaker than the start treaty. there's no limit on the warheads per missile, so the soviets can do their super heavy under the terms of the new start treaty. no limits on modernization replacement. new kinds -- and i perhaps the russian canyon torpedo might be a new kind, just to be discussed in the implementation
commission. and for the first time deployed missile warheads are counted as those actually carried. start 1, it was very important to have to count the capability of the missile, not in new start, which raises serious breakout considerations. a little bit more on compliance and, again, the importance to the reagan administration that arms control not just be verifiable but that it be enforced. one example is the radar, two football fields, huge radar that was illegally located under the abm treaty. and we discovered it in 1983.
the reagan administration, including at the very highest level, at summits as well as ministerials, kept saying it had to be dismantled. and again there was a lot of pressure within the government and congress, oh, it's really not that big a deal, let it go, you know. we have more important things. and the administration kept saying, no, it must be dismantled. the soviets fought that and fought that. and finally in the fall of 1989 in september they came to president bush to say okay,we'll dismantle it. and the next month the then foreign minister made a speech before the supreme soviet calling it a blatant violation of the abm treaty.
the obama administration position on inf violations stands in some degree of contrast. finally, i'd like to echo and perhaps build a little bit on what my colleagues have said about the importance of outreach, both diplomatic and public to the reagan administration. i spent a lot of time on the road speaking to groups. and both governmental, abroad and public here, whether it was about strategic modernization, about the sdi. several allied officials over the years have mentioned to me that no administration before or since was as pu-- as the reagan
administration in keeping them informed. they may not have liked some of the policies but they could never say they were uninformed. and that was appreciated. and, again, the inf treaty is a really good example. we also had a major, major public diplomacy campaign to counteract the nuclear freeze movement here, the soviet relentless propaganda campaign in europe against inf deployments. i believe it was november 22nd, 1983, it paid off. the german parliament voted to approve the demoiployment of missiles on then west german territory and deployments began the next day. again, the soviets walked,
thinking that that would turn the tide of public and governmental opinion. it didn't. a new era in arms control was born. thank you. [ applause ] >> thank you, all five of our panelists and speakers. we hope to find a way to make this available to all the universities, colleges and high schools, the history departments and their political science departments. because recently time magazine did an article at the end of the cold war and they portrayed gorbachev and did not mention
reagan. it tells you how the narrative of history gets written over time and it's critical that it be remembered and be remembered accurately. i wanted to ask all five of the panelists a question. a number of members of congress that i talk to routinely say that the nuclear posture view has now gone through the house armed services committee, the senate armed services committee, the house appropriations committee without a single cut. there have been amendments to try to cut out the low yield d 5 warhead. there have been attempts to get rid of the money for what will be a cruise missile that will have a low yield weapon. and it's been quite successful, but their argument has been, you know, we have to have some component of arms control to make it palatable to a middle group of members of the house and senate that we always have that are the people that give us
that margin of when we count a vote, said, well, it's not unanimous, but it's better than party line vote 218-217 in the house or something. reagan's vision was preserve slow fires, demerve land based icbms and go to c. your fast flyers will be at c. they're not 100% on alert. they're, pick a number on alert, which means any kind of preemptive disarming first strike calculation basically goes out the window if you have a demerveed system. it never was ratified by the congress in the same form. we've kind of forgotten that
issue. people are talking about the alerting, taking warheads off missiles, you know, changing the computers so you detarget, which is what we did supposedly in the clinton administration. so my question is, do you have an arms control component particularly when you have a russian government that is violating the inf, violating according to my friend mark schneider, new start and not very much interested in arms control. we had a program call megatons to megawatts where we took russian nuclear material and burned it. that was a great program that bush 43 initiated. putin has said that put a kibbosh on them all. as a way of moving forward and
cementing which is a consensus to go forward on the nuclear posture view but it's certainly not overwhelming and as i said a switch of 25 votes either way could change that. with that preliminary, i'll start with you and then on down the panel. [ indiscernible ] >> and others. and we in the platform and others in other formats drew very heavily on that nonpartisan, bipartisan behavior. there were democrats who were jack democrats so-called. the people i just mentioned were
among them that were very pro defense and very anti-soviet on the human rights issues. they supported reagan and reagan drew on them. and we briefed them and they briefed us. and that carried forward and so people understand from charts like this one that i put up there -- and i have four more. i can show you why we would talk about a first strike threat, why we would talk about the asymmetries and brief and take questions and go to the schools and the congress over and over again. this is the first of the soviet military power reports. we did one of these a year. the first one was only on the soviet forces, red forces. we insist they add the blue so you could see the asymmetry. this chart on the screen is based on that. i would take each edition of these, one a year to the geneva talks with the soviets once they started. and they started in an intense
way in '85 when gorbachev came in. i would bring five of these to the negotiation deputy, the soviet, always a general and always we knew the intelligence guy. i would make public ceremony of handing him five for his information. the first time i did it he would say, mr. kramer, don't do that. i said, why not? he said there are secrets in there. i said loudly from secrets and people would surround us, from whom? from the civilians in the delegation. the receisoviets did not tell t civilian what is this basic data was. i said this is in the "new york times," the "washington post," this is studied in universities. he never said it's wrong. he never said it's a lie. and they could not refute that.
and the same thing happened in the congress. if we did anything like this today, we should draw bipartisan, nonpartisan support of what? of facts of asymmetries, of soviet violations. we issued the first violations report from the white house in 1984 in january. we had it supported by the general arms control advisory committee. that was not partisan. we had commissions were other things. we had verification testimony on nonpartisan bases. that's how you get it through. that's my answer. >> your question, do we need arms control? >> hit your button. >> thank you. do we need arms control or is there something better? arms control generally speaking hasn't worked very well. one of the major reasons has been noncompliance with these agreements, russia but certainly
not limited to russia. it's in many respects endemic in the multilateral agreements. ronald reagan said in 1982, simply collecting agreements will not bring peace. agreements genuinely reinforce peace only when they are kept. otherwise, we are building a paper castle that will be blown away in the winds of war. now, i mentioned in my talk reagan terminated the salt one and salt two treaties, agreement and treaty because of multiple russian violations of them. it actually had an enormous positive effect on arms control. within months of this action, we achieved the great break through
on both inf and the star treaty. now, as suzansan pointed out, t fact that we were deploying the intermediate, medium-range missiles in europe had a big role to play in this. the other thing, of course, was the russians are totally paranoid that everything that they see in aviation week they assume is true. you know, even if it's just discussion of a concept that never got anywhere. and we had a program to put an earth penetrator warhead. the program was cancelled, but the russians believe their own propaganda and that was also one of the big reasons we made the break through. now, to contrast this with the inf treaty, you had barack obama
in -- let me see if i could find the exact quote here. okay. rules must be binding, violations must be punished, words must mean something. well r well, during his administration there was a major violation, at least one, probably more than one of the inf treaty provisions. michael gordon in writing in the "new york times" in i guess it was january 2014 stated that the united states informed its nato allies this month that russia tested a new cruise missile
raising concerns about moscow's compliance with a landmark arms control accord. and he also said that by the end of 2011 the intelligence community believed that it was clearly a major compliance concern. the original obama response to this in the state department's 2012 report was a sentence -- actually two sentences which read the following. the parties to the treaty last met in the special verification commission in october 2003. there have been no issues raised in the intervening period. that statement was repeated verbatim on an annual basis until the decision apparently made by the high level to first leak this decision.
and confirm in the formal compliance report in 2014. they talked about responding to it, but they did absolutely nothing. they left office with the missile in the process of actual deployment and michael gordon did another story in early 2017 that the russians had begun the deployment on this, somewhat like actually the trump administration confirmed that immediately. it's a completely different attitude you see between the reagan and, you know, the trump administration on compliance issues. and that's encouraging. will we have future arms control negotiations? i think we will.
are they likely to be more successful than previous ones? i have a lot of doubts about that. i think trump administration has a lot of great people in place and they'll do a better job negotiating it, but you've got to deal with compliance. you can take the best agreement that's humanly conceivable. if you don't deal with compliance, it doesn't matter. >> thank you. >> so i think the first thing to say is that we'd need to accept that arms control treaties are not ends in and of themselves. the end pr is very good on this point. arms control treaties are designed to increase stability and to provide enhanced a treat then it has lost its purpose. when treaties are violated, then the treaty parties that continue to comply actually suffer in their national security, whereas the violator gains advantages.
russia today is a serial violator of arms control treaties. today rush stands in violation of the helsinki final act, the budapest memorandum where they guaranteed the territorial integrity of ukraine. the istanbul accord where they promised to get their military forces out of moldova and georgia. the initiative signed by bush 41 with gorbachev and th. the chemical weapons convention and the inf treaty. you can't continue to do arms control negotiations with a country that continually violates its commitments. now, you know, were russia to somehow come back into compliance with its treaties and were we somehow able to get
strict verification along the lines of the original start treaty or the inf treaty, arms control may be something we can talk about again. but right now to consider plunging head long into a new agreement given eight existing treaties being violated suggests that you don't care about the violations. that would be a huge mistake and exactly the wrong signal to send to vladimir putin. >> i think what frank said is very much the case that needs to be communicated and elevated more to the public and through the media, which is very difficult, because they don't want to carry this type of negative message. potentially a call for some senators in order to placate other senators that a new committee, potentially a committee that has some
congressional mandate on arms control, intelligence and compliance or some name like that can be thrown out as a way to try to bring arms control to the front, particularly along the lines of delving into these violations, making a list of them, explaining them, putting the pressure on the numbers who want to talk about arms control and want to have an arms control component, making it clear that, okay, if you don't have an arms control component we'll talk about it and about all the violations and continuing arrogance and dangerous behavior of the russians and to some degree potentially rope in the chinese and some of the things we're doing, although we have not really had arms control
treaties with them. but it may be time to calibrate their behave iorbehavior as wel. whether that's an outside group that's a remake on the committee of present danger or something that has a little bit more of a blessing such as as the u.s./china security commission, that might be some way to allow people who want to talk about it to talk about it and say, okay, we'll talk about it. bring your concern and we'll talk about it and bring the facts to bear on this and use that as a way to get some public understanding and knowledge of what's going on in this area. >> susan? >> i too would echo what frank said, adding one or two points quickly.
one is that you have to have something to negotiate with, which we really saw in 2013. people may have forgotten that president obama made a proposal for follow on arms control negotiations, both strategic and short range systems. the russians just dismissed the proposal of the idea of any negotiations out of hand. there wasn't anything left that they wanted from us as near as i can tell, not to put too fine a point on it. i don't know that that will change that much with the strategic modernization program, because it's hard for me to identify something in the program that we might be willing to trade. for example, for me, the biggest thing on my arms control agenda
would be russian demerveing or at least some kind of reduction in some kind of constraints going back to start one on what they can do in that area. well, we don't have any merveed icbms. and i don't think the ground base strategic deterrent is designed to be merveed. what incentive do they have? i don't know the answer. one arms control issue that faces the administration in the very near future is the question about whether to extend a new start. it otherwise exspipires on febry 2021. so the beginning of an administration, second term or not, is always chaotic. and so that issue would have to
be faced. the big question is, is new start for all its faults better than nothing, particularly on the verification end of things? the on-site inspections aren't what start treaty were, but is something better than nothing? i don't have an answer to that, but i think we have to address the question. >> thank you. [ applause ] >> well, thank you. we're just about at the witching hour for ending the program. i wonder if there's anyone in the audience who does have a quick question they'd like to raise for one or more of the panel members. right here in the front row, stand up, wait for our mike, introduce yourself. many of us know you but we'll allow you to introduce yourself to the watching audience.
>> henry now from george washington university. i was on the nfc staff at the same time that he was and none of reagan's strategic programs could have been achieved without the economic program. i served on the economics cluster. it's an area to think about in terms of reagan's legacy, how he turned around the u.s. and the world economy. the question has to do with the sdi. my question is why there was so little followup on it. reagan never seem to be so committed to it that he got congress and the public involved in trying to understand what he was doing by way of acting to mutually assured destruction and trying to find a way to deter, because he was determined to deter. >> i wouldn't fault him on that
at all. i think he was consistent where he walked out on gorbachev who wanted to restrict testing to the laboratory. and in exchange for eliminating all ballistic missiles. and if you remember the press conference afterward, there were very, very senior people other than reagan who looked very dour about his rejecting that wonderful but tragic trade that was being proposed by gorbachev. he wanted sdi more than anything else. he realized it was insurance, protection, it was against proliferation. it took over the fact that this was -- we had bilateral treaties with the russians. the koreans weren't affected by it, the chinese weren't affected by it. they weren't limited. and the russians were violating that abm treaty anyway.
the others testing of air defenses and abm defenses on all kinds of things, and they're in the compliance reports. and people just didn't want -- some parallels to right now. anything that mr. reagan said were opposed by quite a few people because he said it. and mutually assured destruction was considered as late as in the obama period as the center piece -- i mean, the clinton period, the center piece of strategic stability, the cornerstone. to destroy each other to mutual annihilation, that should have been deterrent. mcnamara and the systems analyst came up with that for mr. kennedy in the '63 period. unfortunately mr. nixon combined that treaty. but reagan was brave enough and moral enough and strategic
enough to emphasize that to his dying day, i think. >> that's a good question. i started a seminary series on nuclear deterrents and missile defense as part of the commission report. and i still run it. i've done somewhere other 1700 events. missile defense was half of all my seminars after his speech in march of '83. a number of things happened. one is that missile defense was used as i think the primary lea leafleaf -- lever to end the cold war. when the democrats flipped the senate in '87 money were missile defense was reduced. negotiating with the russians to do a global protection against
limited strikes which yeltsin was in favor of. but certain powers that be pulled it back. when clinton came in, les aspen got up and said i'm going to take the stars out of "star wars" and cut 40% of all the three t theater defense systems. it took us a decade to pass the missile defense act. we basically over a period of end of the cold war to bush 43 when we deployed something in 2003 and 2004 we lost 15 years because of the change in the environment, the end of history. everything was fine. we didn't have to worry about this anymore. now if you go and look at the
testimony on the hill from all our commanders around the world, their number one request is missile defense. and bob kaplan is right when he said from north korea all the way through the south of asia all the way through the middle east is one great big overlapping missile range from one country after another. missiles now -- you've got the houthis launching 500 rockets and you've got hezbollahhezboll. think of what would happen if no missile defense was available in 2018 when hamas launched more rockets on israel than hitler launched in all of world war ii. we're not talking about the army. we're talking about hamas, a terrorist organization.
you're right there was a pause. that was politically. we're behind the 8 ball on nuclear deterrents as well. but thank god we have what we have. i think of what would have happened if aspen's position was carried out today. >> we're going to have one final question here. then we'll wrap up. >> not a question. a quick description. the best communicator we've had of any president has been ronald reagan. i was a deputy director of the usia and he gave us extreme instructions. we had libraries. even in moscow we had a usia office. >> can we sign you up again? >> okay.
then he asked me after two years to go over to the state department as ambassador and special advisor to schultz. schultz asked me to talk to all of the assistant secretaries onld coand come up with some recommendations. my main was we needed an under secretary for public diplomacy. public diplomacy is extremely important. i don't think our government is doing enough now without usia to explain our positions. >> okay. that was ambassador gil robinson who served president reagan. listen, we have going to have to wrap up today. we're out of time. but thank you all very much for being here. i think this has been a very very important panel. it's just one element of the reagan leg sacy that we need to
reignite so not only do the american people have a recollection of the foundations laid but so that the current administration can do the right thing. thank you all very much once again. [ applause ] >> appreciate your time and attention. [ inaudible conversations ] you're watching american history tv this week while congress is on break. coming up, president ronald reagan's 1987 trip to west berlin where he called on the last soviet president to tear down this wall. a year later the two signed a missile treaty. we'll show you those messages. president reagan and gorbachev
met for a fourth time in 1988 to finalize the intermediate range missile treaty. that is coming up later as we continue to show you american history tv here on c-span3. this august, on american history tv on c-span3, watch our nine-part series, 1968, america in turmoil, where each night we'll look back 50 years to that tumultuous year marked with war, political assassinations and the rise of the political left and right. august 6th we'll discuss the vietnam war. on tuesday august 7th, a look at the presidential campaign of that year. august 8th, civil rights. august 9th, a discussion about liberal politics. friday august 10th, conservative politics. august 11th, women's rights.
august 12th we'll look at the media's role. on august 13th, a discussion about the vietnam war at home. on tuesday august 14th we'll close out the series focusing on the cold war. watch 1968 america in turmoil august 6th through august 14th at 8:00 p.m. eastern on american history tv on c-span3. c-span, where history unfolds daily. in 1979 c-span was created as a public service by america's cable television companies. today we continue to bring you unfiltered coverage of congress, the white house, the supreme court and public policy events in washington, d.c. and around the country. c-span is brought to you by your cable or satellite provider. >> in june of 1987 president
ronald reagan traveled to berlin germany to commemorate the anniversary of the city's founding. american forces network operated by the defense department broadcast that visit live. up next, a 90-minute portion of live coverage from june 12th, 19 1987 courtesy of the archives. and president reagan delivers his tear down this wall speech. >> this is a special report. live coverage of president reagan's visit to berlin. now here's your host army sergeant brian hart. >> good morning it is just moments now until president ronald reagan officially greets the people of berlin. air force one touched down moments ago in west berlin. president reagan is visiting berlin to help t