Skip to main content

We will keep fighting for all libraries - stand with us!

tv   Defense Secretary Joint Chiefs Chair Testify on Presidents 2023 Budget  CSPAN  May 24, 2022 4:53pm-7:02pm EDT

4:53 pm
i believe in january, but i have an optimistic view. >> i can't think of a better place to end. thank you all very much indeed. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2022] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] ♪ announcer: a house panel investigated the financial burden of people with disabilities, specifically those with long-term covid-19. you can watch the financial services subcommittee hearing at 7:00 p.m. eastern on c-span, c-span now, or anytime online at announcer: there are a lot of places to get political information. but only at c-span do you get it straight from the source. no matter where you are from or where you stand on the issues, c-span is america's network, unfiltered, unbiased, word for word.
4:54 pm
if it happens here or here or here or anywhere that matters, america is watching on c-span. powered by cable. ♪ announcer: next, lloyd austin and general mark milley reiterate u.s. support for ukraine against russia's invasion. the comments are part of a budget hitting before the house appropriations subcommittee on defense.
4:55 pm
4:56 pm
>> this meeting will come to order. there is a slight delay before you are displayed on the main screen. speak into the microphone, because it will activate the camera and activate the speaker on the main screen. do not stop your remarks if you are not immediately seeing the screen switch. if the screen does not change after several seconds, please make sure you are not muted. to minimize background noise and ensure the correct speaker is being heard and displayed, we ask that you remain on mute unless you have recognition. i will call on you if you need to seek recognition. you can mute the participant
4:57 pm
microphone when not under recognition if there is background noise. members who are virtual, i want to remind you that you are responsible for muting and un-muting yourself, unless we have a technical issue. if i notice when you are recognized and having a technical issue and you have not an muted yourself, i will ask the staff to send you a quest to unmute yourself. please accept the request so you are no longer muted. and finally, house rules require me to remind you that we have set up an email address in which members can send anything they wish to submit in writing to any hearing. email address has been provided in advance to your staff. this morning subcommittee will receive testimony from the honorable lloyd austin, secretary of dissent, general mark milley, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, and to help answer any extremely technical questions come up are
4:58 pm
joined today by the undersecretary. thank you for participating and i welcome you to our subcommittee. the administration released its fiscal year 2023 budget request in march, as always, the subcommittee will have an aggressive schedule to review it and make adjustments and pass the bill out of committee in june. our goal will be to go to the floor with the appropriations bill in july, and to get it to the president's desk by october for his signature. we both know that this is that the essence because here at home and around the world, democracy and democratic values are under threat. congress must make every effort to pass this appropriations bill on time. for fiscal year 2023, the president has proposed $762 billion within our subcommittee's jurisdiction, a
4:59 pm
$33 billion or 4.6 percent increase over what was enacted in fiscal year 2022. make no mistake, we will ensure that the department of defense has the resources it needs to protect our country. but, this topline number when you put it into perspective, let's think about it for a minute, 2015, when we were fighting in afghanistan, the department received an increase of spending over $200 billion. yes, the world has changed and has changed rapidly in recent years and we have learned a lot, the war in ukraine that it is not only important that we have strong military deterrent, but we also must have a robust diplomatic effort to rally the world in opposition to authoritarianism. we must ensure that we have both
5:00 pm
in order to protect our national security. it is our responsibility of congress to strike the balance between defense, diplomacy and development the war in ukraine has also made it clear the foundational task of properly maintaining, training, and equipping a modern military is essential to our success in the 21st century conflicts. the poor performance in russia and their military has highlighted this very fact. equipping a modern military is essential to our success in the 21st century conflicts. the poor performance in russia and their military has highlighted this very fact. taking care of our personnel, their families, providing their service members with the best training possible, ensuring logistics, challenges can be overcome and given decision-makers the best intelligence. these are all vital components
5:01 pm
of making sure that our military can win in any conflict. procurement, modernization, of course are important, but we will always want to have the edge over our enemy. it doesn't matter if we have 355 navy ships with the most advanced against we cannot perform basic maintenance and keep the ships in service. investments in personnel and operation and maintenance and help don't always drive the defense budget debates, but last year they made up 63%, 63%, of our bill. we all know there's no more critical investment than the health and safety of our service members. members have been particularly alarmed with recent events. the uss george washington where there have been several deaths, including investigations into suicide. the navy has launched this investigation into what led to
5:02 pm
these terrible tragedies. this sub committee stands ready to work with you for any additional funding for mental health services and any suicide prevention programs that you should want more resources for. we look forward to hearing from our witness, and our people, which are the backbone of our force. i want to commend the department for proposing a $3.1 billion in this budget for increasing resiliency at installations for energy efficiency, for its research and development into clean energy. as the largest consumer of fuel in the federal government, the department needs to do more to lower emissions, lower the cost of energy and fight climate change. and our sub committee wants to work with you on these shared goals. and we all know that climate change and addressing it is part of our national security agenda.
5:03 pm
finally, civil of us have had the opportunity to travel to eastern europe in the last month to see first hand the importance of working with the soldiers and sailors and marines, airmen and guards who are all doing whatever they can to help ukraine defend and as you know, we have sent over to the summit the supplemental support for ukraine last night. secretary austin, i want to thank you again for your service and the service of your families to our country and for being here ready to answer any questions we might have. before we hear your testimonies, i would like to recognize our distinguished ranking member for any opening comments he might have. >> thank you. i want to thank you for being here today to testify in the department of defense budget request. though i look forward to hearing about your priorities for the coming fiscal year, i must note
5:04 pm
my disappointment in the request both in the announced -- amount and substance. i believe it is critical we fund the dod at 3% to 5% above inflation to meet our national defense requirements. the 4.6% requested for fy 23 would be sufficient, historic levels, but due to this administration's spending, inflation, spending is soaring at rates we have not seen in years. the dod wrongfully budgeted for a 2.2% inflation rate in a time where we must increase defense spending to keep pace with peer adversaries. this administration is effectively proposing to cut the department of defense. america must continue to enforce the rules-based order we have led in the enduring global security that we are involved in. as we have seen in ukraine, the looks -- the world looked to the u.s. to stand by democratic allies around the world. this comes at a cost of doing so
5:05 pm
as in our own national security interest. republicans in the house and the senate are united just as we were in fiscal year 2022, to ensure our war fighters have the tools they need to be ready, modernized, and lethal. it is my hope the majority follows that fiscal year 2022 conference framework and provides sufficient funding to dod, and that we pass our bills on time this year. along with my disappointment the top line funding level, i also have serious concerns about some of the proposals by the administration. first, many of these services are continuing to pursue to invest strategy. in some cases like the marine corps i think this is appropriate. in others i fear some proposals are shortsighted and leave layering capability gaps. we cannot simply hope that the programs will meet the needs of the war fighters. china, russia, iran, north korea, nonstate actors are continuing to invest in capabilities that threaten our
5:06 pm
stability as well as those of our allies. i failed to understand how decommissioning 24 newsy ships by divesting hundreds of aircraft helps us with our military -- we must be ready for a variety of complex to breakout in multiple were fighting domains. though i expect much of the discussion today to be focused on the situation in ukraine. i do not want us to lose sight on what happened in the withdrawal from afghanistan. not only did this decision weaken our strategic footprint in the region, it led to the deaths of 13 u.s. service members. i look forward to hearing from you about what are enduring requirements in this region are along with what capability we should be focused on in fy-23 appropriation bills. thank you for being here today and i look forward to taking time to question you and i yield back my time. >> thank you.
5:07 pm
the chairwoman will be joining us later but now it is my pleasure to recognize the former chair of the subcommittee, and now the full ranking member of the committee, ms. garanger. >> thank you. i appreciate that very much. i would like to thank the witnesses for appearing before us today. the past several months have highlighted how important it is congress prioritizes our national security and adequately funds our military. russia's unprovoked, illegal, and appalling invasion of ukraine must continue to be met with strong resistance from the united states and our allies. adversaries like china and iran and north korea must know that america will stand firmly with its allies and we have the ability to win any fight. so i commend the department's swift response to the ongoing
5:08 pm
situation in ukraine. inflation continues to increase costs for all sections and the defense industry is not immune to its effects. despite increased aggression from our adversaries and once again the biden administration is shortchanging defense. i hope we can reach a bipartisan consensus similar to the one that led to the final passage of the fiscal year 2022 appropriation bill. this includes robust defense spending at a rate much higher than requested by the administration. congress must ensure that our men and women in uniform have the tools and resources to meet and defeat our enemies. now is not be time to underfund the military. i think -- thank each of you for your service. and thank you madam chair. i yield back. >> gentlemen, your full written
5:09 pm
testimony will be posted in the record. members have lots of questions as you can imagine. so feel free to give a summarized form of your statements. secretary austin, the floor is yours. sec. austin: good morning. all the distinguished members of the committee. thank you for the chance to testify today in support of the president's budget request for fiscal year 2023. it is great to be here with general milley who has been an outstanding partner. i'm also pleased to do be joined by the comptroller. we are still focused on three key priorities at the department of defense. defending our nation, taking care of our people, and succeeding through teamwork. and our budget request helps us meet each of those priorities. our budget request seeks more
5:10 pm
than $56 billion for air power platforms and systems and more than $40 billion to maintain our dominance at sea, including buying nine more battle force ships. and almost $13 billion to support and modernize our combat credible land forces. our budget request also supports modernization to maintain a safe and secure and effective strategic term. and of course none of these capabilities matter much without our people and their families. so we are seeking your support for a 4.6% pay raise for our military and civilian personnel and other special pay and benefits. we also plan to invest in outstanding and affordable child care, and in the construction of on-base child development centers, and in ensuring that all of our families can always put good and healthy food on the table. we're also deeply focussed on
5:11 pm
the terrible problem of suicide in the u.s. military. so we're increasing access to mental health care, expanding telehealth capacities, and fighting the tired old stigmas against seeking help. and with your support, i've just ordered the establishment of an independent review review committee to help us grapple with suicide, to help us better understand it, to prevent it, and treat the unseen wounds that lead to it. at the same time, we're still working hard to implement the recommendations of the independent review commission on sexual assault. we know that we have a long way to go to rid ourselves of this scourge. and our budget request seeks nearly $480 million to do just that. this is a leadership issue and you have my personal commitment to keep leading. you are also seeing how much our leadership matters when it comes to ukraine. and last month, i convened the
5:12 pm
first meeting of what's now the contact group on ukrainian security. it's a group of defense leaders from around the world committed to supporting ukraine after russia's unprovoked and unjust invasion, and it is an important new way for nations of goodwell -- goodwill to intensify their efforts to help ukraine better defend itself, rule for today's urgent needs and for the long haul. now with the help of congress, the united states has been able to deliver security assistance to ukraine with unprecedented speed and resolve. and that's made a huge difference on the ground. and president zelenskyy made that clear when i met with him last month in kyiv along with secretary of state blinken. since january 2021, the united states has committed $4.5 billion insecurity assistance to ukraine, which includes the $150 million authorized by the president last friday. our most urgent goal is sending
5:13 pm
ukrainians the capability they need most, right now, as the war has shifted to the donbass and to the south. the coming weeks will be critical for ukraine. next week, we expect to exhaust a drawn out congress approved in march. as you know, the president submitted a supplemental budget request to congress so we can continue to meet ukraine's urgent requirements without interruption. and i deeply appreciate the house's vote yesterday to approve that request with bipartisan support. and i hope that the senate quickly follows. the supplemental will provide funds for additional drawdown authority and provide more resources for the ukraine security assistance initiative for critical investments and for covering the operational costs of bolstering nato's eastern flank. i want to thank all of you for your strong leadership toward our shared goal of helping ukraine defend itself and support nato.
5:14 pm
now, let me briefly mention a few other major efforts department is focused on. as you know, the department's challenge remains countering aggression and china. so this budget invests some $6 billion in the pacific deterrence initiative. and in keeping with our new national defense strategy, we are going to enhance our force posture, our infrastructure, our prisons, and are written -- our presence, and readiness in the region. at the same time we must be prepared for threats that pay no heed to borders, from pandemics to climate change. and we must tackle the persistent threats posed by north korea, iran, and global terrorist groups. so i am proud our budget seeks more than $130 billion for research development testing and evaluation. that is the largest r&d request this develop -- department has ever made. this includes $1 billion for artificial intelligence, $250
5:15 pm
million for 5g, nearly $28 billion for space cap abilities, and another $11 billion to protect our networks and develop a cyber mission force. madam chair, this budget maintains our edge, but it does not take that edge for granted. so i ask this committee to support the president's budget, and with the help of congress, we will continue to defend this nation, take care of our people, and support our allies and partners. thank you, and i look forward to your questions. to support the president's budget, and with the help of congress we will continue to defend this nation, take care of our people and support our allies and partners. thank you, and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you, mr. secretary. general milley, the floor is yours. >> chairman and ranking members, i am indeed privileged to be here alongside the secretary of defense and secretary mccord to represent the soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines and joint force.
5:16 pm
power troops are the best led, best equipped, most capable military force in the world, largely due to your continued support. alongside our allies and partners, at any given time, approximately 400,000 of us are currently standing watch in 155 countries and conducting operations every day that keep americans safe. currently, we are supporting our european allies and guarding nato's eastern flank. in the face of the unnecessary war of aggression by russia against the people of ukraine. and the assault on rules-based international order.
5:17 pm
in order to protect the homeland. in coordination with the and if necessary to fight against. >> to ensure we have the resource in order to be ready. we thank the congress for last fiscal year's level of military
5:18 pm
funding and look forward to your support for this year's budge its. the joint force will deliver modernization and readiness for the people of the united states at the fy 23 budget request of $773 billion. it will enable the modernization and transformation to meet the conditions of the operating viermts environment we are likely to see in 2030 and beyond. we will work diligently to ensure the resources the american people entrust to us are spent prudently in the best interests of the nation. in alignment, this budget delivers a ready, agile and capable force. we are currently witnessing the greatest threat to the peace and security of europe and prance
5:19 pm
perhaps the world in my 42 years. the war in ukraine is undermining global peace and security, the one that my parents and generations of americans fought so hard to defend. the islands in the pacific and beaches of normandy bore witness when nations seek power. despite this horrific assault on the institutions of freedom. it's hard to see. not only in the european continent but a peace that ensure global stability and international order for all nations to prosper in peace. we are also prepared and need to sustain our capabilities in the
5:20 pm
asia pacific region. we must maintain competitive match in all of the domains of war, space, cyber, land, sea and air. the united states of america is at a very critical and historic geostrategic inflection point. we need to pursue a clear-eyed strategy of maintain being the peace for the unambiguous capability of strength relative to china and russia. this requires that we simultaneously maintain current readiness and modernize for the future. if we do not do that, then we risking the security of future generations, and i believe their this budget is a major step in that direction. >> thank you. i have three questions and succinct answers. i want to be a good steward of
5:21 pm
time for my colleagues here at the podium. yesterday president biden referred to combating inflation as his top domestic policy. would you please share with the committee, the fy 23 budget request and how it was built in the amount of program and cost, growth and how you worked inflation into that. secretary austin, if you'd start out with that and turn it over to mr. mccord at any point, please do so. >> well, thank you, chair mccollum, and i will provide some comments and i certainly will invite secretary mccord to make some comments as well. we built this budget based upon our national defense strategy, which we just released, as you know, in classified form. we were very diligent, careful to make sure that we went after the capabilities that we needed to support that strategy. and i'm confident that we were
5:22 pm
successful in doing that. and this budget provides us significant capabilities. and, again, as we match those capabilities to what's needed to be relevant in the work that we're pursuing in the indo-pacific and also in europe, i think that, again, this is a very healthy budget and provides a significant capability. we built the budget, we had to snap the chalk line at some point in time, as you always do when you build a budget. and at that point in time we made some key assumptions. and i'll let secretary mccord speak to that. >> mr. secretary? >> thank you. yes, as the secretary said, the first line of effort of course was building the budget to support the strategy and implement the strategy, but parallel with that, i was conducting the team on what
5:23 pm
inflation was doing in calendar year '21. we came in with the assumption that the gdp we used would be about 2. we basically doubled it to 4, 3.9% as we built that price increase into '23 and going forward. if you look at the last six months of data that we didn't have then but do have now, we were at 5. we did the best we could with the information we had. we recognize things have changed a little since then. as i described in my rollout briefly when the budget came out, we put about $14 billion a year additional pricing increase into each year of our five-year plan for goods and services, another $6 billion for higher compensation, so about $20 billion per year from last year's plan to this year's plan, just for the pricing increase on top of the strategy-driven choices. >> thank you for that.
5:24 pm
so it's inflation as i said the president is focussed on combating it. and i know you will work diligently with both sides of the aisle as well as our staff as we move forward, if we have any inflation issues that need to be addressed. >> but thank you for that answer. the run up to the russian invasion of ukraine, the biden administration engaged in an unprecedented campaign to dee classify intelligence, one i fully supported, knowing what i would being briefed on and what i thought the american public and the world should know. could you maybe expand to this committee how important the role of intelligence diplomatsy has been in ukraine and working with our european allies as the russians prepared its unnecessary aggression against the people of ukraine. and are there any areas in the defense intelligence enterprise that you would recommend for
5:25 pm
additional investments or for this committee to focus on? >> well, thank you, chair mccollum, you make a great point. what we did in terms of sharing intelligence with our allies and partners was very, very helpful to demonstrate that we wanted to be transparent. and this is a tribute, a credit, to the president. it was his decision to move forward. and make sure that we shared as much information as possible. that created trust amongst our allies in a more meaningful way. and that trust create -- allowed us to create a greater unity. so from the very beginning, you've seen the president, myself, secretary blinken, work hard to make sure that we united the alliance, as much as we could. and they have -- we have been
5:26 pm
united from the very start. we hope to be that way going forward. but to answer your question, the sharing of intelligence was a key element in getting us to where we are right now. >> and then, my last question, i know i'll probably get a brief answer because we're going to be talking to your staff as we move forward. but there's a lot of focus on the indo-pacific and rightly so. but then what is happening with climate change, the natural resource, the shipping, the distance that united states is from russia. china and russia working together and china is considering effort a near arctic nation, as a science teacher that baffles me but they oftentimes say things that baffles me. here in the arctic, with our
5:27 pm
allies, near allies, and any resources you would want us to be focused on that are included in this budget? >> we are an arctic nation, this is a region that is very important to us. and you've seen us address the arctic in our strategy, our national defense strategy, that just came out. you've seen us most recently open up a center that's focused on arctic issues. and we continue the work of making sure that we have that center properly manned and focused on a number of issues. we've conducted a number of significant exercises in the arctic most recently. as a matter of fact, there's a substantial exercise going on up there right now with ericsson and we'll continue throughout doing that work. we've recently had two combat
5:28 pm
commanders visit the arctic, simultaneously. so, i think is this a focusarea for us, as you point out, it's important and we'll continue to resource it appropriately. >> thank you for that. and i look forward to being a person from the bold north, as many of this committee are, not the gentleman next to me from florida, however, to work with you on this. mr. calvert. >> thank you, madam chair. >> secretary austin, i think we're all in agreement regarding the threats facing our nation. china is ewing all the instruments of national power to erode america's standing in the world. we received your new national defense strategy and your fy 2023 budget analysis, first, how does this align with your strategy? and secondly, how does it deter china and russia with only eight
5:29 pm
shims as i read in the budget, requested with the budget of 24 ships, i have a very big concern that we're not taking the threat of china aggression in the south china sea seriously. especially when china is building 22 ships this year. retiring 24 and only building eight. how does this budget ensure that we're balancing the ability to fight tonight with a much needed moderation across the armed forces? >> well, thank you, sir. again, we built this budget. we built it based upon our new national defense strategy. and there is significant investment in a number of issues, a number of capabilities, that are absolutely relevant to the competition with china. as you know, we have to be relevant in all domain, all war-fighting domains, air, land, sea, space and cyber.
5:30 pm
and you see us investment $27 billion in space. another $11 billion in cyberspace. $24 billion in missile defense and defeat. $7 billion in long-range fires. $4 billion of that invested in hypersonics. so, we're investing in significant capability with this budget. and there's an additional $6.1 billion invested in our pacific defense initiative. so, we believe that, again, this is going after the right capabilities to ensure that we remain, not only competitive, but we maintain that competitive edge that we spoke of earlier. >> well, obviously, from my perspective, and from the perspective of many of us on this side, obviously, all of the things that you talked about were supportive of that. but at the same time, numbers do matter. and right now, as you know, the chinese have what, about 360
5:31 pm
shims to our 280 ships. and they're building significantly almost 3 to 1 to our capability. so, that's a big concern. one other quick question on the issue of civilian personnel. i know i bring this up to you and others often. i have a historic trend sheet here that i'd like to submit for the record. and in the year 2000, there were 651,000 civilians. and 134,000 active duty military. today, 100,000 more civilians, 753,000 civilian employees to 1.350 million active duty. so, we've dropped active duty by 50,000. and increased civilians by 100,000. and the ratio, obviously, is out of sync to historic average.
5:32 pm
i think i mentioned to you, if we went to the business council recommendation to bring that back to historic ratio, we would save $125 billion over five years, which we could keep in the department and spend on procurement of building the ships that we need. and building the new air frames that we need. and assisting the army and all the rest of the service in capabilities that they desperately need. so, again, i would take a look at reforms that are necessary to bring this back into -- back into some historic ratio, where we spend the money where it needs to be spent. and, madam chair, i'd like to submit this chart for the record. >> without objection. >> anything you'd like to address on that, mr. secretary? >> well, thank sthanks. as i mentioned to you before, maintaining the right balance, as you pointed out, is a key objective of mine.
5:33 pm
and we'll stay sighted on this and make sure that we do in fact have the right balance. we've taken on a number of new initiatives. we're doing things in space, cyberspace, and other areas that require additional staffing. but to your point, we have to make sure that we keep our staffs lean. and that we're, you know, we have what we need. and not more than what we need. so, i'm committed to you to continue to work this. >> ms. delauro is fine. >> mr. secretary, the bill requires you along with secretary blinken to report to
5:34 pm
the congress on articles of majors sent to ukraine, particularly those that require enhanced and use monitoring. look forward to your report. is there anything you can share with us today about actions you are taking, while having more of a diplomatic presence in ukraine even if it was less than before of the russian invasion helped. and how is the department ensuring that the equipment is reaching the right ukrainian units and used for their intended purposes? the 2022 omnibus provided an additional $300 million for u.s. allies and partners in europe. and created 180 million for the baltic, 30 million for poland, 30 million for romania, 20 million for bulgaria, and 20 million for georgia. how will the department use this to shore up their defenses? >> thanks, representative delauro.
5:35 pm
accountability is an important issue for all of us. as you know, we don't have people on the ground so that makes it a bit difficult. but this is an issue when i met with president zelenskyy and minister of defense reznikov in kyiv about two weeks ago, i emphasized the importance of accountability. the chief of defense was also in that meeting. and how important it is to make sure that they are tracking, you know, the disposition of our sensitive equipment that's being deployed. and they assured me that they were focused on this. now, we visited this again with minister of defense a week ago, two weeks ago, and when i met with him in germany. and as late as yesterday. and in terms of the disposition, the actual disposition of the equipment, whether or not it's getting to the people that need it, this is something that the chairman and i check every time that we talk to our
5:36 pm
counterparts. and we talk to them weekly. and again, we visited this issue with minister reznikov yesterday. and again, we'll continue to emphasize this very, very important point. >> and i'm presuming that we are working with these other countries, in essence, to bolster their resources as well in terms what they need, bulgaria, romania, poland? >> we continue that work, you're right, chair. >> thank you. >> if i can -- >> please. >> a quick question. you know, there's a great focus on the total amount of funding for the department of defense. i'd like to focus on two other aspects. consistent and timely funding from '21 to '22 for programs within the subcommittee's jurisdiction the department received a 4.7% increase. the budget proposes a nearly identical increase for 2022 to 2023. we have already started the
5:37 pm
process of having four committee counterparts that need to come to an agreement on overall spend which would greatly facilitate the enactment of the 2323 bills. how important are predictability and steady increases in funding? how helpful would it be for the department, for congress to enact spending bills before october 1st? and can you describe the negative consequences of another? >> first of all, representative delauro, let me thank you for your work in this issue. you've done a lot of work in the past and i anticipate what you'll continue to do in the future. thanks for everything. this is really important. and if i could ask for, you know, anything, it's for both sides to lean into this. and get the budget passed as quickly as possible. and i know it's important to everybody. but as you know, without a
5:38 pm
budget, we can't do new starts and some of the things that we want to invest in which will give us that capability that helps us maintain that competitive edge, you know, we're late in some cases getting started. so, getting a budget by september would be great. and, again, if i could ask for everyone's help on that again, that's one of the most important things that you can do to help us, aside from passing the budget itself. >> thank you very much. thank you for your help. the last time. i just might conclude by saying two of these supplementals both in march and the one we passed last night, we're talking close to $30 billion for defense. so, i think we are keeping our commitment in that endeavor. as we move forward. and so that what we're looking at in terms of the increased percentage in the president's budget is such it should be in line with where we can try to move forward.
5:39 pm
thank you very, very much all of you, for your service and all of your efforts, to keeping our national security secure. thank you. thank you, madam chair. >> thank you for working it in. i know how busy everybody is. >> i'm going to dash next door. >> next, four questions, we will hear from the full ranking member of the appropriations committee, ms. granger. >> thank you. the military services wants to retire equipment well before the end of their useful lives. the capabilities lost by retiring these assets will not be replaced until future systems come online. one example of this is the navy's combat ship. general milley, please explain how the department determines what amount of risk is acceptable when considering these types of retirements? >> the way we evaluate risk is
5:40 pm
risk to the mission, primarily, we take inputs from the combatant commanders for that. and secondly evaluate risk to service. and those come into me and i compile that for the secretary and provide a risk assessment. with respect to the combat navy marine program, there's an ongoing study for amphibious warfare, and that was mentioned by ranking member calvert on shipbuilding we base a lot of our analysises on inputs from the navy and marine corps. >> so, if you don't have replacement for it and you're still considering it, why would you moth-ball it, as we call it, at this time? >> well, it comes down to balance. in terms of what's affordable
5:41 pm
and what the navy can afford and what the department of defense can afford. so there's risk calculations on whatnot to fund. and what to fund. and the overall assessment was to go ahead and fund the eight ships that we're buying, and not to continue to fund the lcs for this particular budget. >> i have serious concerns about the way it was determined. i have another question. secretary austin, the conflict in ukraine has placed a high demand on our supply of javelins. seniors and others u.s. missions. this demand has highlighted the capacity issue for the defense industry. how can we best support a robust and flexible capacity for our defense ministry? and how can we ensure that we have stockpiles sufficient to meet demand for critical items needed in ukraine for future conflicts? >> the stockpiles are something that the chairman and i monitor
5:42 pm
routinely. where we have input from each of the services. and in terms of working with industry to get them to open up lines and increase production, as you know, we met with industry early on, they have committed to doing that. we saw the president was just down at one of the -- one of the javelin -- one of the places where we're producing javelins here, just recently, and got a thorough lay-down. so the defense ministry is leaning into this. it will take a little bit of time to get some of these opened up. to the degree that we want them opened up but that work is ongoing. and i have to admit that the industry is meeting us more than halfway on this issue. >> thank you. >> next, we'll go to mr. wolmac.
5:43 pm
>> the first thing i will acknowledge mr. secretary, general, your competence, your leadership throughout the years. i've been working here working national security and i think you both are excellent leaders during very difficult times. and i think you have the right team to move forward in what your mission is. so, thank you for your service. i'm going to get into more specific area, ukraine cyber security posture. over the last few weeks we have publicly learned more and more about how our nation's cyberspace operations have both aided allies and partners like ukraine. and our own understanding of our adversary's capabilities and techniques in cyberspace. how important is persistent engagement with maligned actors
5:44 pm
in cyberspace? and how do you assess the u.s. cybercommand capacity to build more partnerships like we have with european nations and other parts of the world? >> in terms of importance, it is absolutely critical. and that's why early on, we partnered with the ukrainians and helped them with training and helped them to outline issues associated with network. that's paying dividends for them, as we speak. it also allos us to get early warning, if we see something developing that could be a threat to our allies, or us. so that's been very helpful to us. in this budget, sir, you've seen that we've invested over $11 billion in cyber. that helps us to modernize the force. but it also helps to increase the size of the force. and that will help in our
5:45 pm
efforts to partner with additional nations, not only in europe, but most importantly, in the indo-pacific as well. so, to answer your question, it's critical. we are building more capacity to be able to do that as we speak. >> the other question, how much flexibility do you have in your posture, based on the department's fiscal year 2023 budget to account for possible increased risk to national security systems and defense critical infrastructure, here in the united states, given the white house's public acknowledgement of evolving intelligence that the russians are exploring options for cyber attacks? >> again, i think we have -- we have significant capacity. we need more capacity. and we're investing in that. in terms of threats to the homeland, as you know, sir, dhs is the lead agency for that. but we are doing everything
5:46 pm
within our power to be ready to assist dhs with anything that they need help with. and so that coordination is ongoing. we've leaned forward on this quite a bit and i think it's been very helpful. so, we'll continue those efforts. >> and i know nsa does a lot in this regard. chris english who was deputy director, very qualified and competent is really heading up the domestic side now. and i assume you all come together as a team to share information to protect us? >> absolutely. absolutely. that's routine coordination. and, you know general nakasone, he's actually focused to be ahead of the need and there's a great relationship there. >> that is a really good team in my opinion. yield back. >> thank you. mr. womack. >> thank you, madam chair, thank
5:47 pm
you, gentlemen, for your service to our country. i want to follow up on a question that my colleague, mr. calvert had asked about the indo-pacific strategy. the budget request has forced rotations but no new permanent increases in combat capable military forces in the region. instead, seems to be betting on more innovation and soft power in that strategy. in my opinion, the need for military power is not decreased, but we're choosing to plug in gaps with nonmilitary capability. so, mr. secretary, help me understand, you know, where i'm wrong on this. and where this department is trying to go in meeting that -- that very complicated strategy.
5:48 pm
>> and i don't think there's a right or wrong here, sir. what i would like to say is, number one, i think we have a very sound strategy. you've just seen us roll out that new national defense strategy. it focuses on making sure that we employ capability in all five the war fighting domains. space and cyberspace. and it also focuses on making sure that we leverage the capability resident in our allies and partners. and i think that's really important. and as we continue that work, i think we're seeing some great opportunities. but as we look at our strategy, making sure that we are in fact getting the capabilities of space and cyberspace, integrated into our efforts, i think is really, really key. we, again, with a pacific deterrence initiative, we have
5:49 pm
invested specifically in making sure that we increase our rotation, our training rotations in the theater that we're investing in some infrastructure and doing some other things. so, i think it's a sound strategy. i think what we've asked for enables us to accomplish that strategy. >> has the unanticipated, extraordinary cost to deal with what was going on in eastern europe right now, has that -- has that cost impacted what we're needing, or what we're trying to do in this budget for our biggest pacing threat which is china? >> i would say, no, i think that, you know, as we've taken on our efforts to help the ukrainians, we certainly have invested quite a bit, as you heard me say, earlier, sir, $4.5 billion over the last couple of
5:50 pm
years. but we've also seen investment from our allies and partners. our major efforts here are, you know, with nato. and with the allies and partners that are in the region. we're also investing in providing equipment and training to the ukrainians as well. and it's that combination of effort that i think has been very meaningful. to answer your question, we've maintained our pace, our efforts, in the indo-pacific. all the while we were engaged in our current efforts in ukraine. >> i've got a question for general milley. the president's budget request a cut restraint by 12,000 soldiers. i want us to be very careful not to allow the army be a bill payer. and i'd like to specifically focus on the cuts to the army.
5:51 pm
that the army's requested redukz is based on reis assessment of recruitment, potential and attainable goals. you can speak to the pipeline and the impact it's having on our ability to meet our objectives on the recruiting and retention front? >> i can. overall, recruiting has actually gone well for the navy and air force and mall marine corps. they're meeting their goals in space force. army is a little behind that. the army hasn't graduated, they're coming up. so that will be leaving out a little bit in the coming months. we project that the army will come below what their desired recruiting goals are. relative to what they're focused on is quality of the force. they want to make sure they're bringing in high-quality individuals into the military, so they determine -- in order to do that, they want a cut in
5:52 pm
strength. it's a modest cut. i don't think it will have a significant overall impact in the overall security of the united states. take, for example, what you mentioned about in the pacific. we've got 350,000-plus troops in the pacific coast, all the way to the forward station west of mbl. we've got a pack fleet you've got a corps in a couple divisions and you've got a tremendous amount of fourth and fifth generation aircraft together with cyber and defense capabilities. relative to the pacing threat, the strategic goal for the united states military, that is clearly in the pacific. so, even though we're incurring additional capabilities in investments what we're doing with ukraine, it's not having a significant negative effect on our ability to keep pace with china. and i think the cuts to the army, for example, are quite modest, relative to the whole. >> thank you, general. >> next, from mr. aguilar, and
5:53 pm
then mr. chryst. mr. aguilar, you're recognized. >> thank you, chairwoman. and general, you spoke about the need to track and understand and respond to activities in the gray zone including the need to invest in regular warfare capabilities. what is the ukrainian crisis teaching the nation about the importance of irregular warfare and a near peer fight? >> again, i think this is a thing that we need to be capable of addressing, going forward. and that we account for that in our strategy. we've seen the russians engage in this type of activity, in a consistent fashion throughout, since 2014, we've watched this continue to unfold. so, we'll need to make sure we have the right capabilities. and the people with the right skills, to be relevant in this kind of activity going forward. >> how are we thinking about
5:54 pm
future policies, existing policies, that will enable us to compete effectively in this climate moving forward? >> policies -- our policies, we need to make sure that they support speed of effort. and that we are -- we have the authorities necessary to get after the things that, again, will be effective, in this fight. and i think, as with anything, these -- our policies and authorities will evolve, as we, you know, as we continue our efforts in this and other places around the globe. >> thank you. mr. secretary, i wanted to shift topics and talk about domestic violence extremism in expressed with my support in continuing to address extreme violence in the
5:55 pm
military. you expressed that 99.9% of troops serve with dignity and honor. but a small number could have an impact on a great organization. you talked about including reworking existing screening procedures for recruits and partnering with other federal agencies and revamping programs. and general milley, you spoke about these as well, these programs. secretary, you can talk about how the fiscal year 2023 budget request continues support for these efforts? >> it certainly does allow us to continue to support the policies and procedures that we put into place. and, again, i would echo what you said earlier. my firm belief has been and remains that 99.9% of our troops are focused on the right things. and are doing the right things each and every day. we certainly -- as you pointed out, need to do a good job, a better job of screening people
5:56 pm
as they come into the military. and also as they're in the military, making sure that they remain focused on supporting those values that they've sworn an oath to uphold. so -- but we have, in this budget, we've asked for an ample amount of funds to support our efforts. that you asked about. >> general, domestic line extremism, and you have spoken to this committee in the past and we appreciate your comments. what more can we do? how should we be thinking through future insider threats and some of the, you know, policies that might need to be addressed and changed? >> a couple things. first of all, i think the size, scale and scope of problem is very, very small inside the military, as the secretary just said, 99.9% of those in uniform serve their country faithfully
5:57 pm
and faithful in the oath to the united states constitution. having said that, small numbers can make a difference if they choose to use violence in some manner, shape and form so it all comes down to good discipline on the force and that comes down to the chain of command. the best thing we can do is reinforce authorities of the chain of command, educate the chain of command, on extremism. and then to take appropriate action if they identify someone who displays that behavior. we're into behavior, not thought. that's an important distinction. we're not out to govern people's thoughts, but behavior is a different matter. and that's what the code of military justice is all about. and that's one of the key roles with the chain of command. >> i appreciate the leadership that both of you have shown in this regard and thank you for continuing to work with this and others moving forward. like you said, an incredibly
5:58 pm
small number, but we want to make sure we're doing everything we can to protect the workforce and protect the country. thank you so much. yield back, madam chair. >> thank you. >> thank you. secretary austin, general milley, secretary mccord, thank you all for being here today. my first question deals with some mineral issues that we've potential could have -- that we could have in this country. of course, the russian invasion of ukraine has demonstrated how europe has been effective on our lives like oil and gas but a recent geological report indicates that united states has relied on russia and china for some of the most critical mineral needs. and i, too, have concerns about the defense industrial base being too reliant on countries that probably don't have our
5:59 pm
best interests at heart. and i think, general, we all should agree that the time to address this and look at this now as opposed to waiting until a crisis occurs. i work to have my colleagues try to address this problem. my question to you, let me just address this to you, secretary austin, how concerned are you about the risk posed to the defense industrial base by continued reliance on strategic adversaries for our critical minerals? and what else can we do to try to address this issue? >> you raised a very good point, sir. this is an issue that's very important to us. it's also important to our country. it's important to our president, as you've seen, the president adopt an initiative that causes us all to focus more on our supply chain vulnerability. dod certainly has a key part of
6:00 pm
that. we're concerned about making sure that we have the right capabilities with respect to micro electronics. casting and forging. battery and energy storage. critical materials, as you pointed out. i want to make sure that we have the right amounts of stockpiles to be able to support our efforts. so, dod is focused on this as a part of the overall government's effort. but your point, this is very, very important to us. >> so, this is something that you do have some great concerns about at this point. >> it is. it is. >> general milley, do you have anything you want to add to that? >> i concur 100%, concerned about us being reliant on raw material, critical minerals, to any country that is an adversary. to any extent as humanly possible that stuff should be
6:01 pm
produced in the united states and under our control. >> let me just mention something that's been asked about that we've talked about how we've done so much to send equipment to ukraine. of course, we can always debate whether we've sent enough and that. but there's no doubt that the success they've had has been because of our helping in the process. but to follow up on a question that ranking member granger, much of the equipment that has come out of our own defense stockpiles. and i'm glad that congress has already appropriated $3.5 billion to dod to backfill the transfer of equipment. of course, last night, the house passed legislation for additional support for ukraine. it is clear that dod's equipment stocks could prove vital, if a similar situation would arise in the pacific and taiwan.
6:02 pm
i'd like to get your thoughts on whether the department of defense level of stockpiled equipment, and munitions, should be grown to levels larger than they were prior to russia's invasion? >> thanks, sir. and again, thanks for your support in getting the legislation through yesterday. that's very helpful to us. as you know, we base our decisions on the size of the stockpile, on our requirements. as we look around to the global requirements to support our plans. we believe that the stockpiles are adequate. and if we believe that we need to grow them based upon changing situations or changes in our plans, then, certainly, we'll do that. we'll take that on and make sure that we advise the president that that's a necessity. but right now, again, our requirements put us in a place where we have the stockages that we have.
6:03 pm
and we think it's about right. >> so, do you think if we increase our stockpiles it would deter aggression by china toward taiwan? >> you know, our adversaries don't really know what we have in our stockpiles, nor should they. so i'm not sure that would act in itself as a deterrent. they'll judge -- i mean, they'll base their judgment on our actions. and our demonstrated commitment, more so than what they believe are stockpiles to be. >> thank you. i yield back. >> thank you, mr. aderholt, mr. chryst, ms. kirkpatrick. >> thank you, madam chair. i want to express my gratitude to you, mr. secretary, and general, to you as well, as member rappersburger referenced
6:04 pm
in the beginning comments. the service that you provide to our country has been extraordinary and god bless you for your dedication to protecting america and freedom. so, i was curious, i read about the hypersonics that were used against odesa. obviously, that's very disconcerting. i wondered if you had any commentary, if we should expect more of that, or what your view of it is, either one of you. please. >> i would -- a couple comments. one is the russians have used several hyper sonic missiles. obviously, the distinguishing factor of the hypersonic missile is the speed at which it travels. we've analyzed each of these shots that they've taken. and i'd like to go into a classified session to discuss any specific details. other than the speed of the weapon, in terms of its effect on a given target, we're not
6:05 pm
seeing really significant or game-changing effects to date with the delivery of the small number of hypersonics that the russians have used. but i can elaborate further in a classified session if you'd like. >> sure. i appreciate that. mr. secretary do you have any comment? >> i absolutely agree with the chairman. they have used a number of them, ukrainians are still fighting, and i'll leave it at that. >> very well. is this the first time we know they have decided to utilize hyper sonics in this war? >> this, to my knowledge, the first time of use of hypersonic munitions in a combat situation. >> ever? >> as far as i know. >> i understand. >> but the russians have used them several times in this conflict and again not a major game-changer to this point. >> i know you don't have a
6:06 pm
crystal ball and it's hard to read putin's mind, i'm sure, given the fact that he's utilizing these weapons, these missiles, do you think that exacerbates the potential for nuclear or not? or can you tell? >> it's very difficult to predict, or to say what mr. putin is thinking. but i don't -- i would not say that because he's used the hypersonic weapon that that's going to cause him to be willing to elevate to use a nuclear weapon. you know, again, he used hypersonic weapons weeks ago. and i think he's trying to create a specific effect with the use of that weapon. and as the chairman has pointed out, it moves at a speed that makes it very difficult to interdict, but it hasn't been a game-changer. he has options. you know, he can -- i mean, he
6:07 pm
can launch a cyber attack. he can employ chemical weapons. those kinds of things that we're all on the lookout for, to see if, you know, he makes those kinds of decisions. but i don't think this necessarily takes him to the use of a nuclear weapon. >> so, we voted last night, the house, for $40 billion to help ukraine. hopefully, the senate will do that soon. are we doing enough to keep ukraine free and protect our allies as much as we should be? >> we're doing a lot. and, you know, our allies are doing a lot. and we're going to continue to do everything that we can for as long as we can, to help them defend their sovereign space. and so, i think the ukrainians are very grateful for what we're doing for them. it has made a significant
6:08 pm
difference in their ability to blunt the advance of superior russian force. and so, again, their needs will change as this war evolves. at the beginning of the fight, sir, you remember, we were focused a lot on providing anti-armor, and anti-aircraft weaponry. that really put them in a good place. it helped to -- it helped them win the battle of kyiv in the north. but as the fight has shifted to the south and to the east, we now see that they have more of a need for long-range artillery tanks and armored vehicles, and those sorts of things. in working with our allies, we're talking to ukrainians routinely. and we're trying to provide them exactly what they think they need in the fight. >> thank you both again very much for what you're doing, and protecting this democracy and great ally of the u.s. thank you, madam chair.
6:09 pm
>> you're welcome. mr. carter, ms. fitzpatrick, and mr. diaz-balart will be joining us by video. >> thank you for having me here. with a conversation i had last week, in my district, you all know that, i'm very, very proud of the commitment of men and women who serve in uniform. i commend you for trying to give them the very best. but we also, as we take care of our war fighters, we have to remember the burdens, the things in the real world have and the economy. and all of the families of these war fighters. right now, what's going on in our part of texas is our mobile
6:10 pm
population is america. americans are migrating to texas in gigantic numbers. carrying large amounts of money from real estate sales they made in other states they left. so not only are they driving up the cost of housing, ridiculously high, a house worth $350,000 real worth, is selling for $1 million. and so forth. therefore, even though smaller homes might be available for service men and women off post, being driven up to 700,000 to $900,000. and then with the benefit of a va loan, they can compete in that market. the buyers -- i mean, the sellers, don't want va loans
6:11 pm
because the other guys are offering cash. that drives our -- all of our military families into the real market. the real market is growing at the same rate. so something that six months ago was $250 -- $2,000 a month is now $4500 a month. and something that was like $1,000 a month is now $2,500 a month. now, i realize you're giving them a raise, and i'm really happy about that. and have you asked increasing vah levels to meet this type of inflationary challenge that we're seeing around our posts, not just in texas, in many other parts of the country? i'd like to hear your comments, mr. secretary. and also general milley. >> thanks, sir.
6:12 pm
and thanks for your tremendous support of our troops and families in the ft. hood area. that's a pretty important part of our overall structure in the military here. big installation. this is a very important issue to me, you know, the health and well-being of our family members and our troops. you saw us take some action last year, or this year, to increase vah in certain areas that were challenged by the forces that you just mentioned. what we're asking for in this budget is help to do more of the same going forward. i think this is really, really important. you know, that the strain caused by rising rent costs and, you know, a number of other things, really created adverse effects on the lower ranking enlisted.
6:13 pm
and we remain sighted on this. we're asking for help in this budget. we're also asking for $2 million to support the construction of family housing. military family housing and the improvement of military family housing as well. so, thanks for your support thus far. and i believe this is really, really important. and so we're asking for more help, so we can do more of the same in the future. >> and i would echo anything the secretary said, congressman. i've known you for a long time and have many fond memories of ft. hood, and i heard congressman calvert saying most of us coming from california, without question, texas, having the right choice there, but having said that -- that was meant to be funny -- soldiers don't ask for much. they want good housing, good health care, good education and safe environment for their family. i believe, i know the secretary
6:14 pm
of defense has the entire department focused on it. and i will personally take a hard look at bh numbers to see if it's appropriate to make recommendations on further increases, in terms of housing allowances specific to the ft. hood areas or other areas. >> thank you. >> i have another question. >> well, make sure it gets submitted for the record. thank you, and as you know, there's a freeway that connects texas and minnesota, we have better fishing. so, ms. kirkpatrick, we're going to go to you, mr. diazdiaz-bala if you wouldn't mind getting ready to turn on your video. ms. kirkpatrick. >> thank you madam chair, my first question has to do with climate change. mr. secretary, i'm pleased to see the converted effort in the
6:15 pm
budget addressing climate change. the department of defense has recognized that a changing environment will have significant impacts across the road. lead to food security issues and potential shifts in regional balances. the department of defense is proposing to invest 3.1 billion in this conduct for increased generators, storage and resiliency at military installations which is a top priority for fort huachuca and days base. this program would go through logistics and research in reducing energy demand, improved storage and other energy
6:16 pm
supplies. secretary austin, what are your goals as you direct the department's efforts to meet the climate challenge? >> well, thank you. and i think you nailed right away when you mentioned this does affect not only our installations, as we look at our stallations in the coastal regions with the effects of rising water levels. the effects of severe weather, as we've had to deploy troops with a greater frequency to address the aftermath of severe storms. we're deploying troops to fight fires. but to your point you made earlier. in the regions that we operate in, we're seeing climate change cause migration in some cases and competition, increased competition. so dod is the largest consumer of energy in government.
6:17 pm
you know, our goal is to make sure that we reduce our carbon footprint by reverting to, you know, our installations using more electric vehicles. i've challenged our installation commanders to find ways to be more efficient in energy usage. so, we have a number of ongoing projects and efforts to reduce that carbon footprint and be better stewards of our resources here. but i, again, to the point that you've made, we're asking for $3.1 billion in this conduct, to help with our efforts in addressing installation resiliency, and energy storage. >> thank you. my second question is for general milley. it has to do with military medical reforms. the military health system is undergoing its most significant transformation in decades.
6:18 pm
merrill reforms have included a transition of military treatment facilities from control of the services to the department of health agencies. and reducing military manpower in support of the services that is priority. general milley, are you concerned about the direction of military medical manpower? are efforts being coordinated across the military services and with the joint staff, and what are the concerns with the medical manpower reductions the services are anticipating? >> thanks for the question. the key issue is readiness of the force, medical readiness of the force. do we have enough medics and
6:19 pm
nurses to handle combat conditions. and are there enough doctors and nurses available to man combat field hospitals? and candidly, i do have concerns about that. it's a very challenging subset, overall, of our military challenges but that one in particular causes great attention, because in time of war as we all know there will be significant casualties. in peace time, you're manning these treatment facilities, these hospitals and clinics. but at wartime, you're going to go forward. and that is where the readiness issues will show up. right now, we're okay on a day-by-day basis. but i do have concerns if we can have a significant conflict in terms of military personnel and the act to deploy. >> madam chair, i have another question i'm just about out of time. i'll submit that for the record and i yield back. thank you. >> thank you, ms. kirkpatrick. and we're going to be having a
6:20 pm
military health hearing where we'll get in more depth in that. mr. diaz-balart is submitting questions for the record. he had to leave. we're going to turn to mr. rodgers. mr. rodgers. >> mr. secretary, undersecretary. >> mic on? >> do you hear it -- and general. welcome, and thank you for your lifetimes of service to the country. it's appreciated. by millions of americans. let me bring up a topic that is tough to deal with. and that's escalation, or the possibilities of escalation in ukraine. i know it's our policy to not be directly involved. and you've maintained that distance. however, the russians have no
6:21 pm
compunction about the morals of fair play or rules of war, if you will. and are demonstrating that daily. suppose for a moment, that the russians decide to go after the missile sites in poland. or in the region of any sort. what do we do? what are the rules of the game that we're into here in this -- in this battle? >> well, thank you, sir. and to your point, it's always dangerous to go down the road of hypotheticals. but this is an issue that's very, very important. if russia decides to attack any nation that's a nato member, but
6:22 pm
that's a game-changer, then, you know, by -- with respect to the article 5 commitments, certainly, nato would most likely respond as a coalition in some shape, form or fashion. this is a thing that nato has looked at, what it takes to defend nato countries. it's a thing that's important to us as well. but if you look at putin's calculus, my view and i'm sure the general has his own, russian doesn't want to take on the nato alliance. he's got a number of troops arraigned in the region in the ukrainian border. and he had some in belarus and still has some there. but there are 1.9 million forces in nato. nato has the most advanced
6:23 pm
capabilities of any alliance in the world, in terms of aircraft, ships, you know, types of weaponry that the ground forces use. so, this is a fight that he really doesn't want to have. and that would very quickly escalate into another type of competition that no one wants to see. >> general. >> i would just say, congressman rogers, that we monitor this literally every day. it's one of the most significant things we're doing. is monitoring the potential risk of escalation in any domain. and by geography, by type weapon, et cetera. and it's something that the secretary has us laser focused on, the president has us laser focused on and the national security establishment is monitoring it very closely. we can give you more thorough briefings in a classified
6:24 pm
session but you mentioned that's special. there are contingency plans that we monitor every single day very closely. >> are we prepared to respond in some fashion? >> i would say that it depends on, you know, the situation. type weapon, nature of escalation. where was it, was it article 5, was it not? there's a laundry list of questions. and depends what the answers to those questions are. but the short answer is, yes, of course, we are. militarily, we're very capable of responding to any form or fashion of escalation, if directed by the president. >> and, sir, you heard the president say we will defend every inch of nato. and you saw that resolve demonstrated shortly after putin launched his invasion into ukraine. we deployed forces to reassure our allies in the baltic states and on the eastern front of nato, and the president's been very clear about his resolve
6:25 pm
throughout this. he is committed to defending every inch of nato. >> thank you, gentlemen. >> thank you, mr. rogers. i'm going to read the next four speakers. however, i will recognize mr. cole, should he walk in immediately after miss bustos. he is ranking member. with that will be miss bustos, miss kaptur, mr. ryan and mr. kilmer. >> thank you to our distinguished panel, appreciate your service to our country. i -- the congressional district that i represent is in the entire northwest corner of the state of illinois, includes the rock island arsenal. and so i would like to ask a question around that. we talk a lot about ships and planes and space capabilities when we look at our national defense. but the majority of the
6:26 pm
sustainment burden for prolonged conflict is going to rest with the army, specifically the sustainment command. and obviously that is part of the arsenal that leads to my question. if you look at history, we know the pivotal role that the army played in, in our victories in the pacific during world war ii. wondering about the -- how we prioritize an account for this in the army's budget and planning, if we assume significantly larger investments in the departments of air force and navy, and maybe we'll start with you, general austin, if you could address that, please. >> of course. we start with the strategy, as we have said earlier. and then we make our investments based upon what it takes to do support that strategy. and you are correct. the army has played a critical role in the past. it is playing a critical role as we speak and then it will always
6:27 pm
play a critical role. if you look at what the secretary of the army and the chief of the army is -- what they're trying to do in terms of making sure that they can meet their requirements, and also modernize the force going forward, you know, they're basing their requests for resources on that. and we think as you heard me say earlier, i mean, there is $13 billion or so focused on in this budget focused on making sure we can maintain a combat credible land force for both the army and the marines. and i really like what we see both the army and the marines doing, in terms of their investment in modernization, and their focus on making sure that they're relevant in any competition, especially any anticipated competition with the indo pacific. >> general milley, anything to add to that? >> the army -- relative to the pacific and relative to some
6:28 pm
sort of scenario against the people's republic of china, it is our estimation that the weight of effort would likely be air and sea, maritime and air forces. but having said that, the marines and army play a very, very critical role in either of those scenarios, as they did in world war ii. even though that was a maritime theater, there was a tremendous amount of island landings and seizures and so on and so forth. it is not a singular service. it is always a joint force. executing minor arms operations and all the demands of war to achieve integrated deterrence before war, or to achieve victory in the conduct of war. the army plays a very critical role there. so some of the things the army is doing in this budget, and in their modernization programs, long range precision fires is really critical to any type of conflict in the pacific. another one is the transformation of a bunch of their formations into multidomain task forces as
6:29 pm
another example. they are making some fundamental changes in the development of aircraft and future vertical lift. there is a whole series of modernization initiatives as we move into the future into the change of the character of war into the future operating environment the army is doing to transform itself so they can achieve an effect not only in the pacific, but anywhere else in the world. >> modernization efforts are exciting. i co-chaired the army depo and arsenal caucus, i co-chair that, we were briefed recently on the modernization efforts and i'm going to get into that a little bit as well. so also at the rock island arsenal, we're designated as the army's advanced manufacturing center of excellence. we're very proud of that. and obviously supporting the army's overall goal of modernization. so i would like to get your thoughts on the importance of advanced and additive manufacturing to the defense department. that is what is being centralized through the arsenal. general? >> thanks. thanks for your support throughout. this is a very important
6:30 pm
capability. if you look at additive manufacturing, it enables us to produce some exquisite types of components and we can do that forward. and save time and stress on our logistical chains and so i think as a great capability and as this continues to develop, i'm pretty excited about the possibilities. but we know that a lot of that is playing out in your home state, and we appreciate the support that you provided them. >> 13 seconds left, general milley, anything to add to that? >> it is a great capability and we appreciate what is happening in rock island for the entire force. >> you guys come over and see us. you're invited. thank you. i yield back, madam chair. >> thank you. mr. cole, unfortunately will not be joining us, so it will be miss kaptur, mr. ryan, mr. kilmer and mr. calvert and i will wrap up the hearing.
6:31 pm
miss kaptur. >> thank you, madam chair. secretary austin, general milley, thank you for your exemplary lifetime of service to the people of our country, what a great example each of you are to the young people aspiring in our country. i'm going to make just a couple little short statements and then i will focus on naval readiness. but i come from the four sea coast. as the department of defense considers deploying various assets and i just ask you to please don't forget the defense industrial base of the country, which congresswoman bustos referenced right now. both in terms of manufacturing capacity as well as energy. we are often overlooked as the four sea coast, as we look at just washington, d.c. area, for example, and so i just want to point you to that four sea coast. secondly, in terms of issues, i'm very concerned about our military and then the nutritional value of food served to our military personnel having just come back from poland.
6:32 pm
and i would like you to find someone in the department that could come to my office, and we could discuss this. i would be very grateful for that. and then secondly, the question of russian vulnerabilities, in terms of ukraine, right now i don't want to talk about it here, but i hope someone somewhere in the defense establishment would be able to brief us on that. as well as the global energy supply issue and how that relates to what is happening on that continent far from here. thirdly, i just wanted to mention the issue of behavioral health and i was down at southcom with some of our members years ago, and shortly thereafter, the topic of the meeting was behavioral health, extremely high ranking individual took his life in bahrain, someone i had met down there. and so i can put this on the record as a member of the mental health caucus here in congress, we're 100,000 neuropsychiatrists
6:33 pm
short as a country, 400,000 behavioral nurses short. so how do we attempt to help the people of our country, whether they are principals in schools or commanders of units in the military when we don't have the personnel to do it? i would urge you it consider uniformed services university of health services as a portal, where we could create a program that would draw people in. they're not going into this field because they earn more operating on people's knees than they do taking care of their neuropsychiatric conditions, but maybe we could have a combined military civilian program that would draw people in to this so we could help the people of our country. i want to put that down. finally, in terms of naval readiness, i have to say i'm terribly concerned about what happened on the george washington, and on the wasp. i know that one of my other subcommittees we deal with nuclear weapons, and the time it is taking both to retool the weapons, and as well as repair ships is creating a dispirited
6:34 pm
situation for some of our naval personnel, for example, who thought a ship would be repaired by -- if it is sitting in newport news, a year ago, a year and a half ago, for hundreds of those sailors, they have no access to housing or "car and and they're stuck on the ship. this is demoralizing. i'm troubled by the defense submission on the navy because i see it getting worse. and so i just wanted to point "flashlight at this part of the budget and say we got to do something. i'm not sure what it is. but we can't keep trying to do everything and not doing it well, and not taking care of those who are in service to our country right now, and the equipment that we are using and to try to get a faster pace to repair. the george washington is go to be up there in dry dock for another year. it was supposed to be finished in 2022. i'm really worried about this issue. and i'm hoping at another
6:35 pm
briefing or somehow we can get greater clarity on where we're headed on this. so if you have any comments about naval readiness and the backlog of repair, its impact on morale, and where we head, your budget makes me even more nervous. >> mr. secretary, i'll yield miss kaptur an additional minute so you can start answering that question and the rest we'll take for the record. mr. secretary. >> okay. well, certainly i share your concern on the issue of mental health and, you know, our access to resources. and that's why we're asking you for -- in this budget, additional resources to help us provide greater access to our troops, which includes telehealthcare, opportunities as well. but this is a really, really important issue. i certainly will take on your recommendation to take a look
6:36 pm
at, you know, our uniformed services piece here and what can be done there. we'll have somebody come talk to you on the other issues that you raised as well. if you want to talk on global energy supplies, we'll liaise with the doe as well to make sure they're -- they know you have an interest here. the repair of a nuclear carrier is very, very sophisticated when you -- especially that level of repair that is ongoing. the pressure that covid has put on, on all of our enterprise is significant. but, you know, that work has continued. certainly not at the pace that we like to see it continue. you know there is two investigations ongoing by the navy, on the george washington issue. and i look forward to seeing the results of those investigations
6:37 pm
and i think the secretary of the navy is headed down to visit with the george washington chain of command here on the 17th. and should have greater insights to provide that visit as well. there are choices that have been made or will be made in the future in terms of how you billett sailors when that repair is ongoing. whether or not we made the right choices is left to be seen. certainly there is a problem there. we have to understand what the problem was a bit more. and then we have to figure out what to do to ensure that we don't have these kinds of problems in the future. again, i don't think it was anticipated, certainly was not anticipated that the ship would be in repair cycle this long, but nonetheless, i expect the leadership to maybe the right decisions, and i look forward to seeing what the investigations are going to show us here. >> thank you, mr. secretary. mr. ryan, and mr. kilmer.
6:38 pm
>> thank you, madam chair. let me extend my thanks as well. i can't imagine how many sleepless nights you had over the past few months and we appreciate it. you're the defenders of freedom in this country and we're try to help and support the best we can. i'm going to kind of go through a few things, comments before i have my question. first, let me just say my own personal opinion, we know this ultimately is going to be the decision of ukraine and their leadership. but i don't think that the russians should be allowed to have an inch of territory in that country. i just don't think we can reward this kind of behavior. and i know it is clearly more complicated than that, but i think it is important that you know where we stand. to get to some of the issues, place kaptur brought up around the mental health, having worked on these issues for a long time, and mr. secretary, you mentioned the suicide issue, which is pervasive across our society now, one of the recommendations i would give is in the -- we have been trying to work on
6:39 pm
this, how do you evaluate people who are coming into the military? one of the more recent analyses of this issue is around adverse childhood experiences, where people coming into the military are bringing trauma from their childhood, could be multiple adverse childhood experiences, but in each one of these experiences it increases the rates of depression, increases your rate of mental health issues, increases your rate of suicide. if you go at this thing, really trying to get some knowledge about the person before they even step foot in the military and that will help, i think, begin to try to address some of those issues. i also want to mention having more of a whole of government approach, you look at the problems that we have now, in eastern europe, a lot of this is because of the energy issue. and the overreliance on russia for oil and gas, and i think a
6:40 pm
whole of government approach, we have gas in eastern ohio, western p.a., marcellus shale, how do we build the infrastructure to get this gas, liquid, natural gas, whatever it is, out of eastern ohio to eastern europe? and having obviously not necessarily a short-term solution, but a mid to long-term solution to help our allies in europe be more reliant on american energy than on vladimir putin, which could, i think, you know, knock the legs out from under him. lastly, and miss kaptur brought this up too, she mentioned it around the issue of food, and it may seem like an ancillary issue in the military, but we have seen from recent studies, multiple studies showing increased rates of obesity, increased rates of diabetes in the military. a few years ago i sat on the va
6:41 pm
committee. so we're seeing, like what are we feeding our troops when they're active and now we have obesity and diabetes when they go to the va have which driving up costs. i've been working on this issue for a couple of years and we had the army make promises about a campus dining pilot, the air force academy in good faith got shut down because of the pandemic, but the superintendent there promised -- air force promised to expand their food 2.0 modernization to 3.0. none of the services mentioned fulfilled their assurances. navy and marine corps did not break any promises because they didn't make any promises. but to me, the -- when you see the recently published report on the military food system, the go found that each services abysmally managed its food systems and i think this is something that is so complicated, my staff brought me a flow chart of how the food
6:42 pm
system works in the military. it is insane. there is no flow. and i just want to be very clear this is not a food -- this is a food management and operations problem. this isn't a nutrition problem. everybody knows what we should be eating. it is pretty common knowledge. so in '22, we passed legislation of a food transformation cell, which within the office of the secretary of defense and if you could tell us what the status of is of that cell and how you can assure us that as we move towards food transformation there is not going to be more broken promises. this is a very important issue for us to save money that we can then put into, you know, a lot of these other programs. >> once again, i'll give you a few extra moments here to answer the question. >> i thank the chair for her generosity. >> thank you, sir. let me thank you for your interest in this and the work you've done in the past.
6:43 pm
and i would -- i would like to say i share your concerns on the importance of this. and i think that the food transformation cell will provide significant benefit in terms of assisting us and coordinating our efforts here. that cell will be stood up in september. and then in october we'll submit a report to you on how we stood it up, and the progress that has been made to date. so we're -- it is a work in progress, but september is a date when that cell will start. >> thank you. >> mr. kilmer? >> thank you, madam chair. thank you both for being with us. and for your service to our country. last year when you were in front of the subcommittee i asked about the shipyard infrastructure optimization program, the siop, an investment in modernizing and optimizing
6:44 pm
our shipyards. i was pleased to hear both of you say very positive things about that, about the importance of that, in terms of the capacity of the navy to meet its mission, and just understanding how critical that was and i want to thank you for that, not only for your support of siop, but our public shipyards too. having said that, i am a bit worried that the program is falling behind in terms of cost and time. not to put too fine a point on it, but this really matters. we don't have a shipyard on the west coast that can afford a class carrier. time is of the essence and would gleefully invite you to come visit puget sound naval shipyard in our neck of the woods. the siop relies on area development plans to inform the optimization program portions of the siop and provide accurate schedule and cost estimates. those were originally scheduled to be completed at the end of this fiscal year. it looks like that's going to slip to the end of next fiscal year. the -- or even later.
6:45 pm
the navy also promised to provide a siop strategic framework to coincide with the release of the president's budget, but congress still hasn't received that plan. that guidance aligns all the siop activities and provides overarching framework to implement. siop as it moves from planning to execution phase. so i'm just concerned that the delays both to the area of development plans and to the siop strategic framework could postpone implementation of some investments that really need to happen for the navy to meet its mission. so i guess i want to hear from you sort of what the plan is just for making sure that this program stays on track, and what your office is planning in that regard. >> thank you. again, thank you for your support and your focus on this. it is truly important in terms of making sure that we maintain world class capability that we had, and will continue to have,
6:46 pm
with our united states navy. we invested in this last year. we're asking you for $1.7 billion to put toward this work, going forward. it is -- that's an historic amount, twice the amount that we invested in last year. it certainly helps to get a budget passed on time so that we can make sure that we're, you know, implementing our plans on time. and clearly i believe that going forward, without the impacts of covid and some other things, that we'll be able to come closer to meeting our goals and objectives. but, again, we're not where we want to be. this is important to the navy, and, again, we'll make sure that the navy is doing everything it can to maintain pace and we're going to have to pick up the pace here, so -- >> do you envision future in which we have to -- you have to set specific targets and met
6:47 pm
metrics and timelines to make sure the navy is keeping on track? >> the navy has those. but certainly making sure that they execute in accordance with the plan is important. and if those goals and objectives are insufficient, then, you know, we'll revisit that. >> let me ask with the time i have left, i know manned vehicles are a key part of the cutting edge technologies that dod is using now and in the future to combat threats from russia and china and elsewhere. the navy's 30-year ship building plan calls for an increase in unmanned assets, to grow the fleet of unmanned subsurface vehicles from zero to potentially 50 by fiscal year 2045. growth in these technologies will lean on installations including key port in my neck of the woods, which is one of the leaders in new uvs, underwater manned vehicles. how can congress ensure the navy is ready to operate this
6:48 pm
technology alongside manned vehicles? >> well, you know, we're still learning a lot. i point to some of the work that the fifth fleet commander is doing out in the middle east. it -- this is tremendous capability that we just have begun to scratch the surface on. and in terms of what it is going to take to fully develop this, there are a bunch of unknowns now. it is, you know, i believe that this is -- this say capability that we need to go after faster, further, and so i'll work with the cno to ensure that they're identifying what their needs are going forward, and that this capability is fully integrated into, you know, our manned surface and underwater capabilities as well. >> thank you. thank you, madam chair. i yield back. >> mr. calvert, any closing
6:49 pm
remarks? >> yes, thank you, madam chair. i'm going to submit a number of questions for the record, and regarding innovation, hypersonics, taiwan, fuel costs, a whole bunch of things that we didn't have time to cover today. but general milley, we had discussed this the other day, and i -- after our hasty exit from afghanistan, i'm concerned about taking our eye off that region. obviously it is still a problem. and as you know three of the 13 service members killed in afghanistan were either in or near my district. in california. lance corporal kareem nakui, lance corporal dylan narula. the families of these folks, these heroes want justice and accountability. we can discuss this more in a classified setting. but as you know we're doing -- what you're doing to find and
6:50 pm
prosecute these terrorists, that conducted that suicide attack at abbey gate is extremely important. not just to the families, but to the morale of the united states marine corps that obviously went there and did their duty. also, i'm concerned about the limitations presented over the horizon counterterrorism capability that potentially will allow isis-k and al qaeda to regroup. i don't think we should take our eye off the ball on that. and as much as you can say in this setting, to ensure that afghan never becomes a haven for terrorists again, i would love to hear that, and what kind of capability have we lost to conduct counterterrorism missions in the future. >> well, first, congressman, let me say how deeply i feel personally and i know the secretary does as well, and all of the senior leaders in uniform feel about the loss of any of our soldiers, sailors, airmen,
6:51 pm
marine, and particularly those at abbey gate, we feel that personally and none more personally than the families of the fallen. so we owe them not only a great deal of gratitude, but we owe them accountability for those that killed their loved one. we know that. and we have not forgotten. and we will not forget. not until justice is served. with respect with the horizon capability, i would like to go into some detail in a classified session, but you and the american people should know that we remain committed as a military to the very first mission statement that we got in afghanistan, which was to ensure that the afghanistan never again becomes a platform from which terrorists will -- the united states. they couldn't done that since 9/11, and we're committed to making sure that never happens again. we do maintain surveillance, and i won't go into the details of how or what forms or america nixes and we have the ability to
6:52 pm
conduct strike mechanisms. but i would prefer to tate rest of it into a classified session. >> thank you. i think you heard quite a bit from this committee, concerns about the navy. and ship building. and then a number of ships, and we're going to have secretary of the navy in front of us, i'm sure he's got a preview of what's -- what will be coming their way. one point i spoke with you, secretary austin, when we met over a couple of months ago in the senate and you, general milley, is the role of any, if possible, to repurpose maybe even work with the coast guard with any of the combat ships in the atlantic. china is making inroads and wanting to be in the atlantic and there might be a mission that they can be refitted for, repurposed for, not all of them,
6:53 pm
but working together with you and i know that's going to be -- pencil to paper to figure out if that's smart and if that works and working with africom and the commander in latin america. but there is a simple fact here, the united states does not have the ship building industrial base to manufacture, let alone maintain a navy that can completely numerically compete with china. but quantity alone is not the point. it is quality and capability that matters as you gentlemen pointed out. china might have 500 ships, but half the ships are small support vessels with no qualitative edge over a u.s. combat ship. the debate, i believe, needs to be very substantiated and not just picking a number that we think might be for the right number of ships for the u.s. to have. that's why the concept of an integrated deterrence is so important and the new national
6:54 pm
defense strategy talks quite a bit about this. the idea that is necessary to confront china is the united front, with our pacific allies. that we do not do it alone. we have the support of the japanese, the south koreans, and the australians. and only by leveraging our collective strength as democracies, as democratic nations, as we have done with nato, and as we are doing right now, in the battle for ukraine to be a free and sovereign nation, we need to bring all our assets together. so for the record, china as i said has about 500 ships, 230 are smaller support vessels. the united states has 2 90 combat vessels. japan has smaller support vessels, but they have 154. south korea has 160 ships, some are small support vessels.
6:55 pm
and australia has 43. so as we talk about how to right size the number of ships we have, but also repair the ships that need to come in, we're going to have some real in depth discussions with secretary of the navy about what is happening in our shipyards. another item that this committee needs to work on, and ship building involves the public private partnerships that we have, it also involves melcom and the authorizers. we don't just do this alone. we have to have more robust discussions. another place where robust discussions have to take place because at the end of the day, we're the bill payer, needs to be on base realignment. once again, that's the authorizers, it needs to be melcom and our committee. these are uncomfortable discussions to have, i realize it. but brack under the review of the authorizers and the military
6:56 pm
construction subcommittee have to start working with us to address these issues. i want to fully state my support for new round of brack. the department has stated in recent years it has nearly 20% access infrastructure and we pay for that infrastructure to be maintained, and it is doing nothing. many of our insulations were aligned and built in the wake of world war ii, and as we have clearly discussed today, the world has changed. a new round of brack is necessary and i believe it could save taxpayers billions of dollars and it could also save the department a lot of time and energy expenditures maintaining something that is not useful to the department anymore. i'm not asking you to comment on these issues, we will be submitting questions for the record, and questions for the secretary. i want to thank you both for coming. i want to thank you for answering our questions live today and taking all the questions that are coming your way in written form. and i also want to give a
6:57 pm
special thank you with -- i think you'll agree with me, to mr. mccord. you are on call, you are in my office frequently, you take questions that this committee staff works on, as we prepare the budget, and so that we have the best bill possible to make sure that our national defense needs are met. so thank you, again. thank you for all those who serve under you, with you, and your families. and this will conclude today's hearing. and the committee, the subcommittee stands adjourned.
6:58 pm
6:59 pm
announcer: president biden has been briefed on the mask school shooting today in texas. at least 14 students and one teacher are said to have been killed. the president is traveling back to the white house and is
7:00 pm
scheduled to speak at 8:15 eastern. watch the president's comments live on c-span, on c-span now, or online at announcer: on wednesday, a house hearing on the shortage of baby formula in the u.s., with the head of the fda and others. live at 11:00 a.m. on c-span, c-span now, our free mobile video app, or anytime online at announcer: after months of closed-door investigations, the house january 6 committee is not to go public. starting june 9, questions of key witnesses about what transpired and why. during the assault on the u.s. capitol. watch live coverage beginning thursday, june 9 on c-span,
7:01 pm
c-span now, or anytime online at c-span, your unfiltered view of government. ♪ announcer: listen to c-span radio with our free mobile app, c-span now. get complete access to what is happening in washington wherever you are with floor proceedings and hearings from the u.s. congress, white house events, the courts, campaigns and more plus analysis of the world of politics with our informative podcasts. c-span now is available at the apple store and global play. -- the apple and google play. download it free today. c-span now, your front row seat to washington anytime, anywhere. ♪ announcer: next, a hearing looking at the inequities in the financial system for people with disabilities. a panel love disability rights advocate -- of


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on