tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN March 31, 2016 6:00am-7:01am EDT
sit in on a meeting and brief then governor bush, and that is how i got to know him. i made a big mistake we were talking about a speech he was going to give on defense and we were talking about how we were going to revise it. i told him you better not get into the details governor because there are a lot of experts that will show you you don't know what you're talking about. and he said -- who are you anyway? whaton't understand elections are about. if i want to reform the pentagon, and i don't say anything about it in the campaign and i go to the joint cheese and say we are going to but if ie pentagon -- campaign on it and i come in with the mandate. i go into the chiefs and say the people have spoken we are going
to reform the pentagon, that is a different matter altogether. know your candidate before you meet them. don't step into potholes. if you do, you can still survive. that is the lesson. mr. stimson: obviously, over time, you develop a chemistry with the president you serve and as the deputy national security advisor and national security advisor, you spend a lot of time with the president. that like any other human interaction, you have got to learn how to read the president. just like you do with a close friend or whatnot. how did your relationship with the president develop? you started off in an ignominious fashion by making a mistake when you thought he was running, how did you come in to become the deputy national security advisor? mr. hadley: condi rice asked me to assert that role.
there was a group of about 10 of there was a group of about 10 of us headed by paul willful with an condi rice and we spent -- fowitz and we spent a lot of time together. i had worked with condi and paul before and they asked me to be part of the team and i was delighted. and it looked like the present was going to be president, condi asked me to be deputy national security adviser and if he doesn't, you can go back to practicing law. mr. hadley: talk to u.s. if you could -- talk to us if you could about how your role as national security advisor changed over time. you're serving of the deputy for obviouslye and you default over time and grow in your role and then you're tapped to be national security advisor.
talk about your development over time and how the relationship with the president involved overtime. mr. hadley: one thing that was had asting was that i close relationship with condi rice when she was national security adviser and i was deputy. i would have told you that i knew clearly what her job was and what she did with her time. in ane i was literally office that was five steps from her office. i saw her go in and out and we would talk 15-20 times a day. i realized when i became national security advisor that i had no real perception of how she had spent her time. what i did not realize is how much time the national security advisor spends with the president. pace in our administration. the chief of staff -- and i a.m. inow up at 7:05 the morning talking to the president about what happened
overnight. and reviewing the day. some days, you would then be continuously with the president a.m. when you got through morning phone calls and other briefings and if you were going to an nsc briefing, you went down to the nationals that until the security room. you might not get done with the president until 12:00. that was a long time with the president and this was one that wanted to know what was going on. you would then get a couple of calls in the afternoon about what was going on. and what he needed to know. the relationship between the national security adviser and the president becomes a very close one. if you are doing it right, you have a lot of credibility. it is one of the things that puts a big burden on the national security advisor because -- you can use that proximity to undermine and
discredit the cabinet secretaries if you want to and i can give examples of how you do that. proximityso use that to put your finger on the scales and take what should be a can pushprocess, you your fingers on the scale and push to a particular outcome. i think the national security advisor has to be aware of those temptations and resist them. that is what president bush basically said briefly. the only thing he said when he asked me to be national security adviser, and i told him it would be a mistake and there were others that we do a better job. that was when of the few arguments i lost with the president. when you get into that position, the only thing he said to me is he wanted to be that he wanted me to be an honest broker. he wantedted that as a process that was transparent
and the cabinet secretaries and vice president would be full participants. they would have access to him and they could express their views to him. it would be in a balanced view with a full set of views available. not tilted by the national security adviser. and that is a burden i think of the national security advisor. mr. stimson: let us play out a hypothetical. the secretary of defense wants to talk to the president about subject a and you figured out the positions. the positions are different between the secretary and the other. do you as national security advisor tried to resolve the problem first or do you eventually make a value judgment that actually these have to be given to the president. give us a hypothetical answer to that type of question. mr. hadley: that is a great question. it is one of the things that the president has to decide, what
kind of nsc process they want and he needs to be explicit about it. early on i think there is attended say, and there were certainly was in the bush administration, that when the the nationals as security advisor i have a problem and the advisor says let me get the principles together and we will come up with a recommendation. there is a tendency to force a consensus. there was a lot of discussion in the first term as to whether condi was knocking heads to force a consensus. she was a powerful figure in known to be one and close to the president. the national security pressed wool came in when i became advisor and said -- if condi rice with her close access to the president and her strong personality was not able to force a kansas -- consensus, how are you, wimpy steve hadley
going to do it? -- i don't have any intention of knocking heads among the 600 pound gorillas. because i have a 1200 pound gorilla down the hall who loves to make decisions. so i said that we will have a good airing among the principals and we will go down the hall and present them to the president. i think that is the preferable model. it is easier to do in the second term because in the second term, the president has been through a couple of crises, he knows the world leaders. it is harder to do in the first term. there may be a tendency by a president -- we will see what the consensus comes up with but my only advice is that i think you should care on the side of bringing issues to the president. mr. stimson: at the risk of playing lawyer and cross-examining you for a
interview onid an the council of foreign relations talking about this issue. back on july 29, 2014, and you said -- only the most important issues are the ones -- so, the ones that are most important have the most interagency aspects get to the white house. talk more about that. mr. hadley: if you think about what the national security staff should be doing -- i would say it's purpose -- its purpose. remember, there is the national security advisor, the council, there is a national security staff, a couple hundred people that support the president and then there are interagency committees at the area's levels that do things. what is the whole purpose of that?
three purposes. one, particularly on the nationals -- national security staff, to support the president in his unique role in national security. right speeches and prepare him for trips. secondly, it is to be the advocate for the president's initiatives within the government as a whole. if the staff working with the president does not advocate's initiatives or her initiatives, things won't happen. thirdly, it requires various agencies to work together and accomplish a coordination function. that is really what you do. if you are sucking up into the white house, the white house review, issues that are a province of a single agency, stop. do not substitute the white lion staff for the
responsibility of the cabinet secretaries. that is why i say it is the interagency thing -- things that require coordination or that are important issues for the president or these kinds of transcending issues of war and peace. that is what should go to the president and that is what the interagency organizations and staff should be focusing on. mr. stimson: you describe your job to chris wallace as a job that requires you to work off stage. is that what you're talking about in terms of how you approached your role? mr. hadley: i think that is right because it if you think about it the national security advisor is not senate confirmed. and doesn't go testify before the congress. why is that? that was an issue that was litigated in 1987 under the tower commission report which was the result of the disclosure that arms were being basically
traded for hostages with iran. structuredson it that way is so the national security adviser and nsc staff are completely independent of congress and are part of the executive staff and enable the president to carry out his or her roles in confidence. if the national security advisor then starts talking publicly and acting like a surrogate secretary of state, and particularly if they start doing operations out of the white house which is a dangerous matter, the congress of the united states can rightly say -- if you have a substitute secretary of state, they should be confirmed. i think the president and the national security advisor need to be offstage. reinforcing the authority of the cabinet secretaries, both publicly and with the president. and when the national security
advisor speaks publicly, he or she should never say -- i think. it is always -- the president has said -- because you're a authority simply calms at the fact of the president. -- simply calm at the fact of omes from the president. mr. stimson: let us which focus slightly to the nsa. what is the role of the nsa from the perspective of the national security advisor? you have two functions, one is the honest broker function. you are running in interagency process and bringing matters to the president for decision in this open and transparent way. once the decision is made, you need to major that it is actually being executed.
that is your honest broker role. put that aside, you are also an advisor and counselor for the president. tricky role. because you have to balance that with your requirements to run a transparent process in which everyone is participating. in my own caset is the following. i would never express my views in a large meeting. when the nsc meetings would express aould not substantive view. i would sit in those meetings in such a way that i could watch everyone and watch the president's interaction with everyone. my job was to make sure the that that meeting produced all of the information that the president needed and so he got a good view of the views of his principles. it was not for me to express my views. one-on-one with
the president in confidence. i would not talk with others about my views that i did do one thing -- in meetings with my national security colleagues, i would not tell them what i was going to advise the president but i would tell them very clearly where i was leaning and how i viewed the issue so they would know that was probably going to be what i was telling the president. and if they disagreed, the vice president and other principles would have an opportunity to put that in their briefing. that is how i tried to balance the roles between honest broker but also confidential advice. we prepared for this discussion, we talked about can division of time and i tell you that i was thinking the first time you and i met when i came over to the white house. i remember the first thing you said was that -- the president thinks we should x or y.
i never heard you say -- steve hadley thinks this or that. retrospect, now that you have had many years back out in the private sector, what things would you have done differently? none of us does our job perfectly. we try our best and keep plodding forward but what would you have done differently if you had a chance to do it again with the circumstances being the same? mr. hadley: we all come in with limitations from our own experience. time withry little the congress in my career. i think that was a limitation. i was creative but i, and it is risky, don't think we were creative
enough in using the congress in our diplomacy. what do i mean by that? when a congressional delegation invitinggoing out, them to come in, talk about the countries they were going to and suggesting some messages that would be useful for the country that they would then deliver. and when the trip was over, ask them to come in and briefed me on what they heard so i could pass that to the president or better yet have a session where they could sit down with the president. you have the tendency to let congressional relations handle congress and i think i should have been more active. i did a lot of briefing of the congress but i don't inc. i was thinking how to use the congress affirmatively to advance the foreign policy of the united states. mr. stimson: let us which focus again to intelligent -- intelligence assessments. intelligencee
community says x at a topic and that is the reason to judgment. how much did president bush pushed back and why might a president push back? mr. hadley: my sense is and david shed and others can talk about this but the intelligence community puts a lot of weight on what is the judgment of the intelligence community. the community assesses that x or y or its judgment is x or y. the path, particularly once a president has been in office for a while, they are less concerned about the bottom line judgment and more about what is it they know and how do they know it and what don't they know. i think that is the grist of the interaction between the president and the intelligence analysts. at the end of the day, particularly a second term president, they will make their own judgments.
i think the interaction is heavily on the issue of what do they know and how do they know it. all, there is a phenomenon that comes in. there would be prefers that come in with an intelligence report and the report would go like this -- a reliable source who works next to someone who reports to a third level physician in the iraqi willnment says that maliki not agree to the agreement that allows us to keep forces in iraq after 2008. this is briefed to the president spoke toys -- i just him on a secure video yesterday and we talked about this year he issue and he says that he wants the agreement. so one of the problems in some sense and it is a dilemma that
david shed and i tried to fix but we never really did is that there is a lot of intelligence. there is intelligence being gathered by the president of the united states and the vice president and that is not shared down to the analysts. you are putting the analysts in a very difficult position. the analysts is dealing with the sources and does not know the intelligence that the president of the united states is gaining from his direct interactions with his other heads of state. we never fixed that problem. if you make someone play a card game and you don't give them half the deck, they will not be as productive. mr. stimson: in one sense, when we talked to prepare for this, we talked about how obviously the intelligence community and -- theycies there are are under influence but the president also influences.
put more words around that. people miss that the president is a president -- is a person intends to be inquisitive. how does that shape or influence the intelligence community? briefers ofwhen the the various principles who take the pdb, the president's daily brief to brief the president and vice president and others, i am told that at the end of the day, they all get together and they and about what they learned what questions were raised by the president and vice president and various principles. presumably, that causes them to do more digging. secondly, president can ask for information. i remember one instance when a briefers said -- in iran there are 80 families that control everything and make all of the decisions. and the president said -- oh really?
so bring me a list. it took a couple of weeks and a list came back and there were 86. and the president said great. now coming if me a list of all of the contacts of these families in the united states. i want to know where their children are going to college. i want to know what real estate a have here. because he was thinking about potential pressure points. it was a big list. the intelligence community never came back with that list. one of the things the president can do is task. thinks --when people think there is an intelligence failure, he can set up a commission. he did so after 9/11. to take a hard look and come up with recommendations in order to try to help the intelligence community improve its performance. it is a dynamic and inner -- and
interactive relationship. my stimson: i won't tell kids that even the cia does not do its homework assignments. mr. hadley: there were a couple of incompletes. [laughter] mr. stimson: let us jump into some of the myths about the nsa and the nsc process that you and i spoke about earlier. one is that the antecedent makes decisions -- the nsc makes decisions or the nsa is a cabinet officer. runsnally come at the nsa intelligence and military operations from the white house. pick up on any of those myths that you want to debunk. mr. hadley: you have to remind me -- you will have to remind me. of 1987, we issued a report out of the tower commission which reviewed the arms for hostage activity under
the reagan administration. what turned out to happen is the nsc was running on behalf of the operationsigence with respect to iran. that is a very dangerous thing to do out of the white house. it is not with the nsc is supposed to do. it does not have the operations to do that. it was one of the things that really was at the center of that tower commission report. you do not do operations out of the white house. we talked about the national security advisor, not a cabinet agency, not confirmed by the senate, does not testify before the senate -- the congress and therefore has to be self-limiting in the role which is the way you avoid the conflict with the secretary of state. if the national security advisor is operating mostly offstage and behind the scenes, and let's the
secretary of state be the face of the foreign policy of the administration to the american people and the world, that is the right relationship. again, when the national security advisor does come forward, the national security advisor should be speaking only in the name of the president. finally, the national security advisor as i said early on can secretariese other and i will give you the easiest example. up at 4:30 a.m. in the morning and you are in your office at 5:30 a.m. and you are looking at the newspapers and you see there is a leak on the front page of the washington post. out of the state department. ways you could handle it. you can wait. you can go into the president at 7:05 a.m. and say mr. president,
i'm sure you saw the front page of the washington post today. there is a leak out of the state department. to getcondi rice she has a hand on it but don't worry, i will call her and fix it. that is a prescription to make yourself look good in the secretary of state look bad. that is not i would say the recommended practice. the recommended practice is that you would call condi rice at 5:30 a.m. and she would be on the elliptical. she would pick up the phone out of breath and i would ask her if she has seen the washington post. i would tell her to take a look and call me back. she would call me back 20 minutes later and say -- yes, this is how it happened and this is what i'm doing. and then she would ask -- would you like to tell the president or should i? and i would suggest that she called the president and tell him what she is doing about it. then you come and speak to the
president at 7:15 a.m. he is on the phone. and he puts his hand over the phone and says -- i am talking to condi about the leak this morning. -- yes iyou don't say told her to call you. your job is to encourage the president to have confidence in the secretary. until they cannot do their job and then you tell the president there is a problem. mr. stimson: how do you know that they are not able to do their job? there was no course in college or law school and there is no book about how to be the national security advisor, the golden rule book. i take it from your life experience. you were secretary of defense previously. how do you know that? these are tough jobs. i don't think people appreciate how difficult and demanding these jobs are. in themeone is drowning
job, it becomes apparent. it becomes pretty apparent. that it will probably be apparent to the president. in some sense, you're telling the president something that the president already knows. the other thing i would say is that the national security advisor is not the only voice. one of the things that something like by cheney did for president -- he had wide experience. when they would have lunch together, the vice president could say -- the president could say to the vice president -- how is this person doing? in my time at the pentagon, i came over to the white house a bunch of times and oneetary rumsfeld was plus
-- the additional person at the table for those of you know have not -- for those of you who have not done that those are principal and deputy meetings. there is a lot of policymaking that goes on behind the scenes, inter-agency, and in preparing for principles meetings, how do you go about getting the whole intelligence picture to prepare for that meeting? what role does the president play in those principal meetings? mr. hadley: one of the things we tried to do is that if there was a principals meeting coming up -- it included the cabinet secretaries and the vice president with the national security advisor in the chair, meeting without the president. the way a principals committee then becomes the nsc or national security council meeting is that it is the same cast of
characters with the president. in some sense, the principal committee meetings is an opportunity to work through issues and get them all on the table and prepare to go to the president. do is thatld try to when there was an nsc meeting, we would try to have the president's daily brief, provide relative intelligence on the morning of the day before and nsc meeting that was going to address the issue of kosovo or something like that. secondly, most nsc meetings would begin with the president turning to the director of director of the national intelligence or ci and say today's subject is -- or let us have an initial scene setter. and i would do that in the principals meeting. framee would stand up and the issue in terms of what we knew regarding the intelligence
of what was happening on the ground. thedly, when you got into policy discussion, and even though the director of national intelligence or director of cia was not supposed to do policy, i would usually invite george give us hisample to view about what the policy should be. and he would always say -- i am director of cia and we don't do policy but if you ask my opinion -- i was thought it was helpful. have i missed something? mr. stimson: shaking his head no. in one of the panels this morning, they discussed at length overseas collection of intelligence. they talked about it in various contexts but they also talked about it in the context of section 70 two and expires next year and hopefully will be reauthorized.
how valuable is information about foreign leaders to the president and what role does positive foreign intelligence play in the run-up to those types of bilateral or multilateral meetings? usually come up when the president would meet with the foreign leader or go on a trip, there would be a one-to page document for the president which was helpful for the president that has not met those leaders. in the second term, it is probably less important. have met those leaders. secondly, my sense of what would be useful for the president, these are political animals that become president of the united state and they are dealing with political leaders. one of the questions they always ask is what are the political
problems that the leader i am going to meet with are working with. what are their issues and what are their constraints? the president i worked for was always interested in that. i do not recall and others can comment but i don't recall . that theaha intelligence community said the leader x was going to raise issue y. that rarely happens. i think generally the intelligence community knew in advance what issues would come. you would occasionally see the --lth or piccadilly leader --ly's -- of a i didn't think that was helpful. mr. stimson: did the president ever get mad at you? mr. hadley: yes. [laughter] mr. stimson: you don't want to
say more about that? mr. hadley: early in my tenure, we were getting the president ready for a speech and there was an issue we did not get resolved. i thought we could do it at the last minute. at that is not how president bush wanted his beaches prepared. he walked in and he's that -- you guys did not get this agreed? let me show you where that is going to go in the speech. he flipped through and came to a black page and said -- that is because you guys did not do your job in a timely fashion and this is not going to happen again. do you read me? and i said -- yes mr. president, loud and clear and it did not happen again. mr. stimson: two more questions and then i want to open it up to questions from our distinguished audience. serviceur years of
including several transitions, what advice can you give the incoming national security advisor in terms of structure, lessons learned, things to avoid or how best to serve his or her boss. them toey: i can give the president and the national security advisor. one of the things i would say to nsc issident is -- your a team sport. one of the considerations, two of the considerations of the people that you ask to serve on your national security council and in your senior cabinet positions is one, it is good that you know them and you -- they had your confidence because particularly, historically, the state department early on, has
disappointed a lot of presidents. if theery helpful president has a strong relationship with their cabinet secretary. secondly, it is a team sport. select people that know each other and have each other's confidence and can work together. , for me, i have worked for vice president cheney known bobears, i had gates for 40 years, i had known condi for 20 years. peoplee a comfort with and you have confidence with them and there is a presumption of good faith and it really helps that things done. secondly, i would say the president and the national security advisor, the interagency process is the 's process and if it is not working, the president needs to fix it because no one else will be able to.
thirdly, i think i would say to consensus ifget you can on lower-level issues among the principals but take it check president as a because the president may not agree with the consensus. the national security council again does not make decisions. it prepares decisions for the president to make. who the country has elected to decide. work on consensus at the lower levels but on the big issues, bring him or her options. let us have the president make the decision. that is the way the system should work and how it works best. when other, there are two ways of doing business in the white house in my experience. one is how the mystic policy tends to get done which is a processte house-centeic
-- white house-centric process. there is a train going down the track and the president is in the locomotive driving the train and this is where it is heading -- let us talk about how we are going to implement it. we have a different model on the national security side which is to involve the cabinet security -- secretaries in the policy from the get-go. this developed better policy. this is who the president has chosen and who has been confirmed. if they feel like they are part of the process they have ownership in the initiatives. they tend to be more enthusiastic about processes and decisions you have been a part of. i would say use that model in terms of running the staff.
again, for the national security advisor, do not try to substitute for the cabinet secretaries and do not undercut the cabinet secretaries. be modest. stay in your lane. and work off stage. mr. stimson: great advice. has to do withn young professionals. internshipreat paid program here at heritage and we bring in a lot of bright minds every trimester. a lot of them who we have had the pleasure of working with say -- how did this person get to be with this or have a they get into that position in the government. a lot of them are interested in security matters. 40m sure a lot of them in years would like to be national security advisor to the president.
regardless of party ideology because that is irrelevant to the question, what advice you have for the young then and women here at heritage and elsewhere on how they can position the elves as young to takeonals to be able advantage of opportunities that you had. you went to or knell undergrad, yell law school, and then onward and upward. how does one position oneself to do that sort of thing? mr. hadley: five things. one, what do you study? read history. understand economics. law.nderstand the how we organize our society is really between the economics and the market and laws and regulations and statutes. history. read enough i was a government major. that was fine. i took too many government courses and not enough history courses.
second, travel and live outside of the country. there is no substitute for having the perspective of the rest of the world when you are conducting foreign policy. we do not do that enough. as broad a set of experiences as you can. be more of a risk taker. i was very cautious. be more of a risk taker and gather as much broad experience as you can. begin gives you a broader perspective. fourth, take time to get to know your colleagues. particularly in the early jobs a you have at the he come in the national security business. you will get to know a here group, and these are people who will live -- likely be your or 40gues for the next 30 years. i was not a shining star as a young person. i never had a mentor. i did not impress anyone enough. every job i ever got was because
someone i had worked with new what i could do and recommended me for the job. that is how it worked for me. so take time to get to know these people and build confidence with these people because when you arrive at the peopleu are working with that you know and trust and have confidence in and who know and trust and have confidence in you. and fifth, be smart. that how far you go in your career will be more determined by your character. i think that character counts. -- ask that it means someone said, character is what you do when no one is looking. and i think that -- washington is a small town. forwant to get a reputation
integrity, a person who has principles, a person who says what they are going to do, and always does what they say. and person who treats people with respect, whether those above you or those low you. david beers and used to say, always answer your phone calls and always return your mail. say, inc. about your reputation, think about character. i think those things at the end of the day matter. that is what i would say. mr. stimson: thank you very much. i think we have time for some questions if you would be so kind to raise your hand. name andyourself by affiliation and wait for the microphone. ahead, mr. johnson in the front. mr. johnson: thank you.
could you speak about the tension between open source information, your press shop is getting called because there are tweets about something happening in the ukraine versus what you can get from the intelligence and official channels. how that informs our presidents decision-making decisions. how does that impact the senior leaders? mr. hadley: the good news is that there has been a huge explosion of information from a lot of sources and the agency i and isnderstands that using open source is. i have seen wonderful programs of people, the data collecting from social media in real time. and in election situations being able to detect weekly where electoral violence is starting to happen and deploying some
forces or deploying a counter twitter or text message campaign to calm down the violence. these are wonderful tools that allow us to know in real time what is going on. the challenges for the intelligence community -- you become an information community and incorporate these into the kinds of information support that goes to principles. there is a tendency to think that the only reliable information is the information that you steal. i don't think that is right. a lot of the things that you know are hiding in plain sight. if you look historically, particularly at some of our more nefarious world leaders, they tell you exactly what they are going to do, it is in their speeches, and we just did not read them. there is a great opportunity for open source and big data. is aroblem is that there
lot more information than there is understanding or knowledge. the trick of it is not getting overwhelmed by it. of thatlem with all information and the availability of it to senior-level decision or's is that -- decision-makers it invites them to get down into the weeds. you have to step out of the weeds and ask the strategic. when of the great stories if you read the book by george scholz called "things on my mind." he said once a week he would go to the folks outside of his office and say -- i am going to go in and sit down and close my door and i do not want to be disturbed unless my wife calls or the president calls. that domestic policy is more important than foreign
policy. they also thought he was going to go in there and take a nap. he would take a yellow pad and a pen and take the issue of the day and i would say -- what is the issue? what is the real issue we are thinking about. what are we trying to do? bulletn in simple points, how are we going to do it? what is the strategy? we don't do that enough. there is so much information and so many events and so much press of business -- we are fighting fires. we are managing crises. if all you do is manage crises, all you will get is more crises. because of you would not be putting into place strategies and policies that you need to shape events and avoid crises. that is the real challenge for people in senior and national
security positions today in my view. mr. stimson: this gentleman in the back. >> reporting for the voice of american news. we know that members of the u.s. congress, sometimes do not go overnight on capitol hill because they are too busy. present inn duty or the white house ever required more than 24 hours, navy in a time of crises, and what was the reason? after 9/11, i cannot remember when i finally went home but it was not for a while. remember one night in
particular, the president has written about it, the president and the national security adviser and secretary of state had all gotten onto the airplane to go to china. it by you to dexter around the white house detected botulism and toxins. the president clearly had been exposed. before he left. we did not know if it was a false alarm or real indicator. i was back and worked with the and the attorney general and head of homeland security and tried to manage that crisis. we were up all night. quite frankly, figuring out how medicalo get some support to the president but also waiting for the report because they were going to test the sample on some rats.
i spoke with the president. the president asked what we were going to do and i said we were going to test the rats. and we should have some antitoxin coming your way on the airplane. the question will be -- the next morning how will the rats do. will they be dead or not? we stayed up all night and we got the report and it was a good report so i called over and asked them to pull condi rice meeting inut of a beijing. went by the president and he asked what it was and she said it was a call from hadley and we will find out the news. she got on the phone and i said -- good news. she walked back into the room and the president said, condi? and she shared the good news. that was a long night. mr. stimson: this young man in
the front with the striped tie. army captain currently attending georgetown. you mentioned that you don't think the nsc should be running operations out of the white house. side ofcomment on the the nsc right now and what that does for inter-agency relations? mr. hadley: the nsc has gotten larger over the years and there are some reasonable explanations for that. after 9/11, the whole homeland security piece he came much more important. we did not have the kind of interagency process to coordinate the domestic side that we had on the foreign policy side. some of the growth made sense. what is the role of the nsc staff?
one of the things you have got to try to do is remember, it is in the 47 act about ordination. the government is very stovepipes. agencies have their own interests. they don't always communicate the way they should do. what the tennessee has to do for operations is require -- is coordinate and interact across the stovepipes. if you are going to do that, you want to have a small group of people, you want to be organized so you are leading in task force formed. i would have the task force in and have five or six offices to get the full perspective. if you're nsc gets too big however and you get stovepipes within the nsc that nearer the stovepipes in the government agencies, you will not be able to integrate the process. you are just re-creating at the white house the stovepipes. it is your job to try to
overcome that. my preference was always to try to have more information in fewer heads because it allowed you to integrate and allowed you to see connections between things and overcome the stovepipes. i think one of the challenges get backew team is to to a smaller, leaner, nsc that supports the president on the functions but with the presumption that less is more and smaller is better. mr. stimson: steve, we will end where we started. and that is, the title of this presentation is "how intelligence is used by the president." give us your thoughts. how is it used by the president? is an input to the president. isis both information and it
an interaction with the people in the intelligence community who have spent their lives studying these problems. it is one of the things i think that makes our government unique. we have this phenomenon that a president cons in and brings a lot of people who share the political agenda of that president. they then interact with the permanent government. the military, the foreign policy. the foreign service officers and the intelligence officers. they are the repository of knowledge and experience. and our government puts them in dynamic tension. where the political appointees are trying to him puke some of the president's priorities on the permanent government and the permanent government is trying to take those priorities and filter them through their knowledge and experience. if it is a mutually respectful
relationship and interactive relationship, the country is the better for it. the intelligence community plays a part in that. but they are only an input into the president. and there are judgments the president has to be that transcend the intelligence community. there are some people that think use the president can never military force unless the intelligence community has told him or her with a high level of confidence that there is an imminent threat to the people of the united states. and i think that giving the intelligence community that kind of check off which i think some people -- it is not how our system of government works. -- governance works. the person that the people of the united states elected -- intelligence is often wrong.
intelligence, the the president when they make hard decisions, are taking into account a lot of other factors. their sense of history. their sense of politics. their sense of where the country is. their sense and judgment about the political leaders. all of these kinds of intangibles that really contemplate to play when the president has adjourned the meeting of his national security nationaltaff -- security council principles and is thinking overnight about a decision that he or she will announce the next day. it is in that timeframe that all of the issues come into play. i think it is important to recognize that that is the process. the intelligence community is an input but only an input. at the end of the day, those are hard decisions that the president has to make.
>> today on c-span, washington journal is next, live with your phone calls, tweets, and facebook comments. at the brookings institute in washington. we will have live coverage of the wife of senator ted cruz and carly fiorina as a campaign in wisconsin. later, the spotlight on the supreme court nomination process. timn rights campaign and scholz of the first amendment partnership on the religious freedom laws passed by legislatures in north carolina and georgia and the backlash from opponents who say the new
laws legalized discrimination. then efforts by republican presidential candidate to unbound convention delegates. we will speak to alex rogers. host: good morning. it's thursday, march 31, 2016. on today's "washington journal," we'll discuss the religious freedom laws making their way through several state legislatures and the pushback they're receiving from gay rights groups. we'll also take a look ahead at the republican national convention and the race for so-called unbound delegates. but we begin this morning on the debate over raising the minimum wage in california today. the state assembly could approve a deal to raise the state's minimum wage to $15 an hour over the next six years. meanwhile, new york state governor andrew cuomo continues to push his own package for an