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tv   [untitled]  CSPAN  June 30, 2009 7:30pm-8:00pm EDT

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i welcome the opportunity today to have that discussion with you and hear your thoughts and questions that you may have. i thank you for your time. [applause] >> during the q&a, if you would be kind enough to identify yourself when asking a question and tell us what organization or with. also please wait for the microphone to come to you so that we can capture it. i would like to take advantage of the podium to ask the first question which is given the increasing proliferation of the problem and the share fastness of the real estate involved, could you expand on what you see the navy's ongoing role in combating piracy is? >> piracy as i have said is not a new problem. it is the reason for existence. our role in combatting piracy
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is to join with other countries that have similar maritime interests. and operate, have presence, and be able to share the information that is key to interrupting what i call the business of piracy. because it really is a business. the ransoms are taken. the ransoms buy better equipment and communications and weapons. it is interrupting that business. the work that we are doing with many countries off the coast of somalia has evolved significantly in the last year or so. the cooperative nature of the way that we are sharing information has unable to -- has enabled an effective approach
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but it is a large ocean area. it is four times the size of texas. pirates did not live at sea or bank at sea. all the business of piracy is done ashore and there has to be an effort to increase the -- removal lawlessness from that part of the world so that you can squeeze the pirates from the sea and how of the rule of law address their criminal activity ashore. that is what happened in ta few years ago. a high incidence of piracy there. malaysia, singapore, and thailand came together and put in place of maritime scheme and shared information, joined in cooperative patrols but at the same time they were able to use their law -- law enforcement ashore and were able to eradicate piracy.
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we have to continue to work cooperatively. i would also say that three or four years ago, if you had said that china, russia, the eu, nato, malaysia, india, the u.s., australia, canada, greece, turkey, would all be working together, that is a pretty interesting mix of countries but that is what we're doing because there is a common concern that we all have and i think we are making some good progress there. it is also an international effort. we created a task force, 151 to be a coordinating element for piracy and right now, the task force is being commanded by a turkish admiral, u.s. ship. >> other questions? >> i will spot here.
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>> has been some talk lately about getting rid of basically the idea or the goal of being able to fight two major conventional wars in different theaters. it is time to revisit the idea. i wonder what your take is on that and should we not retain the capability to fight, say, north korea and iran should they both flareup at the same time? >> i think that is one of the fundamental questions as we work through the quadrennial defense review is to determine what the needs and how do you put in place these force planning constructs that allow you to design the force that you need. at the end of the day, we are
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going to live in an uncertain world. we will never be able to eliminate the uncertainty. we must be able to do is to look at what is the type of force in size and capacity and in capability that we should have to address the many challenges and opportunities that are going to be out there. as we go through the quadrennial defense review, part of that is saying, what is the right course planning construct? is it two or one and a half? woulthat is what it does. there are different opinions of qdr's. i am a proponent of the defense review. it is a healthy exercise to be able to take a snapshot of where we are, to look at the world and look into the crystal ball was best as we can discern and
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determine where should we be. what type of capability should the u.s. have to address our interests and to be able to be the type of force for good that we have been over the decades and centuries. >> without prejudicing the review, what is your position on the war issue? >> it is a significant and fundamental decision you have to make. we are going through that now, looking at what is the right way to try to define that characterization, if you will, of what we will need in the future. i believe part of the success of the qdr is to go into the process and look at the analysis with an open mind.
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if i went in and said, this is what i strongly believe and shut off all the good analytical work and the serious discussion that is taking place, i am not sure that that will be in the best interests of what we're trying to achieve. the qdr allows us to challenge some of our assumptions and question what we're doing. that is not easy. that is a hard thing to do, particularly in a large bureaucratic organization that has a lot of inertia behind it. where there is interest in specific programs. if you do this right, you begin to question and you should question, are we doing the right thing? >> you talked about your perceptions of an increasingly disordered world. i was wondering if you could talk about the trend lines in terms of nuclear weapons proliferation separate from
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iran. if i can sneak in the second question. in march there was a lot of friction in china's naval forces. how are those trends and how did you diffuse those? >> on nuclear weapons, that is an extraordinarily serious topic. the proliferation of nuclear weapons and nuclear technology. we have a couple of countries that are aspirants for nuclear capability. the biggest concern is the technology. for that technology may be and can dad then fall into the wrong hands and when you get the nexus of that technology and extreme non-state actors, that is a very dangerous mix. that to me is one of the great concerns and will that
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proliferation take place in the maritime domain? that is one of reasons why i believe that is nations come together and engage in maritime security constructs and procedures, that the ability for us to understand what is moving on under and below the ocean, but the ability to share information with our friends and partners will be key and what will continue -- contribute to being a safeguard. with regard to china and the chinese navy, we did have the issue in the western pacific with one of our surveillance ships in the chinese fishing boats. it is interesting to note after that took place, i was on the phone with my counterpart for about an hour. three weeks later i was in china on my fourth visit and also my third time with my counterpart.
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we were able to talk about these things. but contrast that with what we're doing in the gulf of aden with the cooperative nature of the counter piracy operations there. we were able to work our way through these. believi think admiral wu has a separate opinion. we're going to continue to do that. >> you talked about the demand you are seeing from the commanders and you do not have enough ships. at the same time, you have had lots of challenges as far as affordability does.
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can you get the cost of the ships down and can you say a word about what the goal is? you talked about 1000. >> the first offirst off, ia am proponent of the littoral combat ship. it has been operating and we are pleased with what we have seen with that ship. we have the second lcs independence which is an interesting design and a ship that has great capability. that ship should be at sea this week so we are eager to see that happen. i am encouraged by the trends that i am saying as the
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companies begin production on the second. we are seeing the time to do similar assemblies coming down which means the cost is coming down. we have the drive to bring the cost down. we have members who have the same passion, to get that cost down. when i talk about capacity, lcs is the shift that will alleviate the capacity issue. we have to get the cost down and that is something the industry will be working on and that is something that we will be working on. we will ensure that we do not add anything to the ship that causes change to occur or causes more cost and we are committed to that. >> are you confident that you will meet the cost count or what
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you have to ask -- >> we are in talks about the cost half. my perspective is one of having been a fleet commander-the pacific, saying the demands and the needs and opportunities that exist and being in the position i am in right now and seeing what the commanders are asking for it. to me, the floor of 313 is still a valid number. if that does not mean it will not be a challenging process to get there but i believe lcs is key. the fact that we have reverted to more predictable cost shipping in the ddg 151 will help us not just increase the numbers but give us the capability we need. >> i was wondering, we have seen
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as a nation the cost of a hot war. the cost in terms of people and blood and treasure. can you talk -- is the qdr looking at the benefits of deterrence and how you put a price tag on that? >> absolutely. there is no question that it is not and it is not just the cost issue, either. the need to do everything we can to prevent more is more than a dollar value. it is the cost of human treasure. and so, i beliebveve you will see as an outcome the types of capabilities that will allow us to be more in the prevention
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regime. that is why i feel quite good about the strategy that we have sent where we clearly ar ticulated in our strategy that preventing war is as important as winning more and why the emphasis on some things like maritime security regimes were we can work with friends and partners to alleviate the type of activity, transnational criminal activity that can produce those types of corrections and that can result in conflict. theanand why we think there is value in the humanitarian assistance that we have been conducting. the amount of patience in four years on the hospital ship and we have dispatched a pacific
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partnership and the africa partnerships station has just concluded and that was extremely successful, but it allows us to not only touch people in other countries, but it allows to bring leaders together and dialogue takes place. as winston churchill said, jaw, jaw, jaw is better than war, war, war. >> yesterday was the date for pullout from iraq. how well equipped you think the iraqi government is to self govern and protect their assets? >> i believe that the time line that we're on and the adherence to the timeline and the work that has gone in to getting to the point where we are by the iraqi government, by the iraqi
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armed forces, and by the american and coalition forces that have been on the ground in iraq to prepare for this day, i believe that it the time is now. will there be of violence? -- will there be violence? i am sure it is not going to stop. i believe the time line was appropriate and i applaud the effort of all parties to get as to that part. >>-- get us to that point. >> recently a commission released its posture review report and it made the connection between deterrence and nonproliferation activities and emphasized that america's deterrent role is important to its preventing other countries from proliferating nuclear weapons. some of the east asian allies
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have indicated that they are concerned about the credibility of america's deterrent force. i would like for you to give us an update on the follow on projects that you have for the ohio class and also, whether the navy intends to pursue the [unintelligible] and the replacement. >> we are in the process of doing the nuclear posture review. the discussions that are taking place are not only on the strategic weapons, but also on tlmn as well. with regard to the replacement for the ohio class, in the budget that we submitted and that is on the hill, that is the beginning of research and development for that submarine. so we have committed the funds to do that. there are some who would look
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and say, aren't you going early, but if you look at the developmental timeline for the ohio class and where we are starting with a replacement, we are just about in the same ballpark. we're looking with -- working with the united kingdom because they also have the need to replace their strategic deterrent. we are moving forward with that replacement. we have the money in the budget and that budget is on the hill. the ability to get started on developing that new class of ballistic missile submarine is in -- a extremely important. -- is extremely important. that is part of the nuclear posture review. >> for the past week, we have been getting reports about one of our destroyers shadowing a north korean ships that may or may not be carrying weapons
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parts or contraband according to the latest security council resolution. can you give us a sense -- what that would mean in this particular case but also in future cases where we have intelligence that allows us to shadow other ships. >> going back to my point on being a global navy, the ability for the u.s. navy and the western pacific to be able to maintain contact on that ship is a function of being there. you do not whistle it up and send it forward. the fact that we have some good information is no coincidence. you made the comment about no
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enforcement. i think the resolution that is in place has significantly close down on a lot of options for that type of proliferation to occur. because the ship is prevented from bunkering for either fuel or water. and there are some provisions in the resolution that called for states to do more than they have in the past and i believe that it has been helpful in that regard. we will see how that plays out in the coming weeks. i do believe that the resolution with the added aspect of not giving a ship a place to go get pretty lonely out there and you
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have so much water and you only have so much gas and we have to make some decisions. >> you mentioned energy in your comments in the beginning and i was wondering how you think about what the navy's energy risks and challenges are versus finite resources. how this energy play? >> i tell my staff i am not a big powerpoint guy. i kind of hate them. this about took me to the edge right here. [laughter] there are two slides that got my attention. one is total ownership costs of what we buy. we are quick to say we got a good price on this ship so we're going to buy it. we have not been looking at total ownership costs. that gets to the manpower bill
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that i was talking about. it gets to what it costs to operate some of the sophisticated equipment. embedded in that total ownership cost is the other side -- slide i got my attention. it is the locations and estimated longevity of oil reserves globally. i am not a novice to this. a group in the middle east with my dad who was in the oil industry. it has been an interest items for me for decades. it is therefore very important that we as a navy do everything that we can possibly do to reduce the expense and reduce the reliance, particularly on fossil fuels. the challenge that we have as a navy, right now we are a navy of 283 ships which is where we are.
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if you look at the navy that will exist in 2020, it is 215 of 283 will be around in 2020. it will be around for awhile. what we have done in the last year is we have taken an approach that looks at the the old and the new. what can we be doing to bring energy costs down on the old stuff and then as we look to the future and we make procurement decisions, we will make them not on how much the item costs but rather, on what the cost to on will be over time. i think we have to do that. it is not just on the airplane, ships an, and submarines. it has to be on the large shore infrastructure we have in the navy. our bases, the communities where
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people live. and the same applies there. the old, how do you make the old more energy-efficient and that which we put in place for the future has to be minimal. the amount of energy that the military uses as part of the national amount, i am sure most of you know it is around 2%. not a large amount. but for me running the navy, that is -- energy is the huge bill that i paid. we have to bring that down. we in the navy are very proud of some of the accomplishments. we run one of the largest solar generations in the u.s. we are heavily involved on the shoreside with some geothermal work. we're doing some work in tilde energy and currents and thermals. we have stood up the task force and i will tell you that it is
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not a faddish initiative to stand up a task force which is sometimes the case. as i said, sometimes when you look to the future come out how much will it cost to own and operate and how dependent are we on hydrocarbons? we have got to get serious and now is the time and we're off and running on that. >> two specific questions. you talked about the chinese navy in general. last week we had the latest session of talks and was wondering if you had any readout and was wondering about any issues that came up. in addition, there is speculation there will be a military agreement at next week's summit. i was not aware there were any
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nady issues. >> -- any nady issues. >> all the services have an interest in it. and whereas i have not got an awful readout from the talks and the team has just gone back from china with details, i do not have them but i am encouraged by some of the things i hear. and the importance of the relationship is i think extraordinarily important to any relationship between countries. the incident in the chinese -- the ability to pick up the telephone and talk to someone i know and who knows me, even though we have differing opinions, having that ability to talk is important. the ability for ships to come together off the coast of somalia, whether it is the
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russian ships we have been operating with or the chinese ships that we have been operating with i think are extremely important. one of the outgrowths of my visit to china was an invitation that i extended to my counterpart to have him send a couple doctors down to our hospital ship for a couple weeks. normally that is a very lengthy process for them to approve it. doctors were on board within four weeks. it is important that we have these discussions, that we continue to me, that we make sure that we can articulate our interests and positions but professionally, to be able to worker way through that. i'm hopeful that we will see increasingly robust opportunities. >> time for one more question. >> currently you have combined a joint force -- task force operating in the persian gulf.
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stressing thae mil to mil relationships, if china was to become part of that, which you entertain allowing some sort of mil to mil contact to be established with the iranian navy? >> i would see the type of relationship that would develop would be one that would be based on the broader national interests and then the question also becomes their reveries various elements in iran that are operating maritime forces and with whom with the relationship be, but that is our decision that is part of the broader diplomatic context and we will conform


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