Federal News Service August 19, 2004 Thursday
HEADLINE: PANEL II OF A HEARING OF THE HOUSE INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS COMMITTEE
SUBJECT: DIPLOMACY IN THE AGE OF TERRORISM: THE STATE DEPARTMENT'S STRATEGY
CHAIRED BY: REPRESENTATIVE CHRIS SMITH (R-NJ)
WITNESSES: PATRICIA DE STACY HARRISON, ACTING UNDERSECRETARY OF STATE, PUBLIC DIPLOMACY AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS; J. COFER BLACK, STATE DEPARTMENT COORDINATOR FOR COUNTERTERRORISM; FRANCIS X. TAYLOR, ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE, DIPLOMATIC SECURITY; MAURA HARTY, ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR CONSULAR AFFAIRS; EARL ANTHONY WAYNE, ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR ECONOMIC AND BUSINESS AFFAIRS; CHRISTINA B. ROCCA, ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR SOUTH ASIAN AFFAIRS; CAROL RODLEY, PRINCIPAL DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR INTELLIGENCE AND RESEARCH; JAMES W. SWIGERT, PRINCIPAL DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATION AFFAIRS; DAVID M. SATTERFIELD, DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR NEAR EASTERN AFFAIRS; PHILO DIBBLE, ACTING ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE, NEAR EASTERN AFFAIRS
REP. SMITH: I'd like to now welcome our second panel to the witness table, beginning with Ambassador J. Cofer Black, the Department of State's coordinator for counterterrorism. Prior to joining the Department of State, Ambassador Black was the director of the CIA Counterterrorist Center. And we will put more extensive biographies into the record, but in the interest of time, we'll do a shorter version.
We'll then hear from Secretary Patricia De Stacy Harrison, who serves as the acting undersecretary of State for public diplomacy and public affairs as well as assistant secretary of State for educational and cultural affairs. Secretary Harrison previously served on the United States Trade Representative's Service Policy Advisory Council and was co-chairman of the Republican National Committee.
Ambassador Maura Harty became the assistant secretary of State for consular affairs on November 21st, 2002. Prior to assuming this position, Ambassador Harty served as the executive secretary of the Department of State.
We'll then hear from Ambassador Francis Taylor, who is the assistant secretary of State for diplomatic security, and director of the Office of Foreign Missions. Prior to his appointment in 2002, Ambassador Taylor served as the Department of State's coordinator for counterterrorism.
Earl Anthony Wayne was sworn in as assistant secretary of State for economic and business affairs on June 1st, 2000. Secretary Wayne previously served as the principal deputy assistant secretary for European affairs.
Secretary James W. Swigert is the principal deputy assistant secretary of State in the Bureau of International Organization Affairs. Mr. Swigert previously served as director of the Offices of South Central European and North Central Europe, and as deputy assistant secretary of State for Europe.
Carol Rodley serves as deputy assistant secretary of State in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research. Ms. Rodley was previously the deputy executive secretary in the Executive Secretariat of the State Department.
Christina Rocca is the assistant secretary of State for South Asian affairs. Prior to joining the Department of State, Secretary Rocca was the foreign affairs adviser to Senator Sam Brownback.
Philo Dibble has served as deputy assistant secretary of State in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs since May of 2003. He was previously the deputy chief of mission in Damascus, Syria.
We are all honored to have you here today. Your insights, your written statements all will be made a part of the record, and this willi become very crucial in our deliberations, full committee and for the Congress, in devising what we hope will be a wise strategy going forward.
Ambassador Black, if you could begin.
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REP. SMITH: Thank you so much, Mr. Dibble, for your testimony and insights.
Let me just begin the questioning. I'll lay out a few questions, and some will probably ask some-a few of you might want to respond. But let me begin with one I know that Ambassador Black would want to respond to. And you know the national strategy for combatting terrorism, which was released on February 14th of '03, looks an awful lot like what was finally produced by the 9/11 commission-denying access to or sanctuary for terrorists, and all of the other mutually reinforcing policies that are contained within it. And, in a way, I was struck by the sense that that might have been like a blueprint for the blueprint, which is fine, that ideas be borrowed, and that we get the best possible strategy.
But, I have a couple of questions specifically, would the NID and the National Counterterrorism Center be responsible for developing a strategy to deny sanctuaries to terrorists, or would the State Department take the lead in that effort? Are there any recommendations that you have looked at made by the Commission with which you don't agree? Are there some of those that you said this just wouldn't work, if you could touch on those as well.
And, if I could, to some of our other witnesses, Mr. Swigert, are there any U.N. conventions against terrorist financing? We know there are other U.N. conventions that worked very effectively in other areas. But on financing, we know there are on financing, are there any on travel? The 9/11 Commission report made a very important point in that for terrorists travel documents are important weapons, and I wonder where we are perhaps in creating such a convention if one does not exist, or there might be something that we're unaware of?
Let me ask some of others, Secretary Wayne, who is responsible for terrorist financing policy in our government? Because there are, obviously, Treasury, and there is a whole group of people at Justice that have a share, who actually leads when it comes to that issue?
I would say to Secretary Harrison, I think it's-I appreciated your testimony and the importance of public diplomacy in trying to mitigate these terrorist acts, more importantly winning over people to democracy and tolerance. I would point out that the House Appropriations Committee passed its bill by the House, Congressman Frank Wolf, the Chairman of that Committee, he provided $65 million for radio and TV in Arabic for Fiscal Year '05, a substantial boost, and I know it's separate, but the broadcasting board of governors will get about $601 million, which is another substantial boost. So, I think we're getting it, and certainly Chairman Wolf should be commended for grabbing this brass ring, public diplomacy and broadcasting and satellite television, and the like, and running with it so effectively. We on this committee deeply appreciate that. Maybe you want to comment on that as well.
And then to Mr. Swigert, two questions, you heard perhaps earlier, if you were here when I asked the earlier panel, about the advisability of the OSCE model and perhaps the OSCE itself. As you know, there are five Mediterranean partners now that are participating. They are part of our deliberations, and I interface myself with many of these individuals, and that's about the only time I really get to speak to some of those folks. And I think the more contact, the better. The more engagement, the better. Whether or not this might be suitable. Our hearing we had on the 15th of June, at which we heard from a number of individuals, including Ambassador Max Kampelman, was very insightful, and while there may be some glitches, there were glitches when the final act was being considered back in 1975, and many thought it was a sell-out to the Soviet Union, that they would get everything, and it turned out to be a human rights, democracy promoting document, and process, more importantly, does this fit?
And let me ask you, UNESCO, you know, Jim Leach, Chairman Leach, one of the leaders in ensuring that we rejoined, along with President Bush, UNESCO, it seems to me we're now paying some $70 million into it. Does that provide a venue for the Middle East and this constructive engagement.
And, finally, you mentioned in your testimony about the summit, the G-8 Summit that was held just a few months ago. One of the things that struck me, while a lot of good, important initiatives were discovered there, microfinance, economic development, what seemed to be lacking to me was the importance of fundamental systemic change in the area of democracy, political parties, real elections, a fair and independent-minded judiciary, and it seems to me that very often with some countries of the world we seem to want to stand off on those issues, we've done it with the PRC, the People's Republic of China for years talking about economic engagement, but not necessarily that they need to have free and fair elections, and things of that kind. Perhaps that's an oversight, maybe it's a stepping process towards that, but maybe you might want to comment on that as well, Mr. Swigert, and anyone else.
Ambassador Black, if you could begin.
MR. BLACK: Sure, I will begin, and then we'll sort of go down the row so it's convenient. Those here who are interested in my views on the NID, and also some proposals of the 9/11 Commission that I might not support as whole-heartedly as the others, I personally support the concept of a National Intelligence Director. I think the idea is very sound. It is an individual that can pull together various elements of the community to develop effective warning products, and to take action. For me, the most novel aspect is to bring the domestic and the foreign, essentially, closer into context in one team.
This in no way affects the preeminence of the Secretary of State in the foreign policy arena. Having served in both capacities, both intelligence and now in foreign policy, this, I think, too, the people that do this kind of work would be very clear, intelligence is to collect information, and to prevent terrorists from conducting actions against innocent men, women, and people. It is the preserve of the Department of State to initiate, maintain, and nurture foreign relationships. That in these relationships are various, clearly stated objectives, under the strategy of the national strategy for combating terrorism is essentially to defeat terrorist organizations, to deny them the ability to establish sanctuaries, to diminish the underlying conditions that terrorists seek to exploit, and through that to defend the United States.
It is the State Department that creates and encourages the will of foreign countries to resist terrorism, and it is also the State Department, as a foreign policy organization, that assists in capacity building with those states that have the will, but do not have the capacity.
I'd take the last opportunity, Mr. Chairman, on this subject, to say that, I think I have some perspective in this area, having spent a 28-year career in the CIA, and I have been very grateful in seeking out, coming to the State Department. I did this, essentially, for three reasons. One to help to defend my country. Two was to work for a man I admire greatly, the Secretary of State, Colin Powell. And third is a full appreciation, as a practitioner of counterterrorism overseas, of the absolute, critical, unequivocal need for an effective, robust, American foreign policy that supports, and enables the practitioners, whether they be intelligence, law enforcement, or the military.
In that vein, I'm sure many of your previous speakers have said this, but I think the panel you have before you would underscore the importance of what it is that we do at the State Department. It is crucial to enabling the others to do their job to protect the American people.
Lastly, the question you asked about what recommendations of the 9/11 this morning, coming in the car this morning, listening to National Public Radio, I heard Senator Rockefeller essentially respond to the same question, and I essentially would like to encapsulate what he said. We have the greatest military on the planet, they operate effectively in what it is we taught them to do. The proposal to subsume the paramilitary units of the Central Intelligence agency into the military, I personally believe is a bad idea. The CIA has unique capabilities, and unique strengths, I think, that should essentially be left intact and used in coordination with the military. What's important here is effectiveness for the American people. I fear, unless there was very careful integration and nurturing of this very special capability, that it would turn the CIA paramilitary unit essentially into just another military unit, and it would lose its unique capability that it has currently, under the Director of Central Intelligence.
Thank you, sir.
MR. SWIGERT: Mr. Chairman, if I might turn first to the question on whether there is a necessity for a new legal convention on preventing the movement of terrorists. I just flipped through the 12 legal conventions related to terrorism that are out there, there is not a specific convention that I'm aware of that relates to this issue.
However, resolution 1373, which is binding on all member states of the United Nations, states specifically that all states shall prevent the movement of terrorists, or terrorist groups by effective border controls, and controls on the issuance of identity papers, and identity documents, and through measures for preventing counterfeiting, forgery, or fraudulent use of identity papers and travel documents. So I think the issue here is not so much of a lack of authority, or a lack of a binding requirement on all states, it's a question of compliance. And as is often the case with Security Counsel resolutions, another question that arises is that of enforcement.
That's where we have tried, working with our partners in the Security Counsel, working with other interested states in the U.N. system, to build up this counterterrorism committee to put a spotlight on what's going on, in terms of states and their implementation of resolution 1373.
REP. SMITH: I'm sorry, if I could interrupt you, if you don't mind on that, wouldn't there be some value added to boost compliance if it were raised to the level of being a convention, where member states would have to accede, and there would be more openness, and those who could be held to account by a panel of experts could be, as opposed to a resolution?
MR. SWIGERT: I agree with you. There may be some utility to having another international convention, and that's an issue I'll take back to look at with our experts. I just wanted to underscore the point that it's really-the authority is out there. All states are under the requirement to prevent the travel of terrorists, or terrorist groups, the question now is how can we get effective pressure on them to do so?
We've tried to work through this 1267 Committee in identifying al Qaeda, and al Qaeda-linked groups, and naming them, and then publicizing those names throughout the U.N. system, as one way to focus greater attention on who it is you must prevent travel by. As I said earlier, that is an area where we're trying to do a better job. There have been some reports that people have traveled, that we've seen in the press, despite being listed by the 1267 Committee, and we diplomatically have engaged throughout our missions overseas to try and ensure that all countries take steps to implement those measures, and we've also taken steps to ensure that they're doing a better job than before in reporting on their implementation of those measures.
But, I agree with you, this is an idea where it's looking at, and I'll get back to the committee with a more concerted answer after we've had a chance to consult with others in the administration.
If I could turn to UNESCO, perhaps, I agree with you that there are a lot of opportunities in UNESCO, and that we should be looking at UNESCO, and our return to UNESCO in light of the change to the international situation, the challenges of the war on terrorism, the need to engage in all organizations to try and prevent the emergence of terrorism. I mentioned this in my oral statement, perhaps if it would be useful to the committee I could mention some of the specifics we have been pursuing.
We now have as an ambassador a very active ambassador, Louise Oliver in Paris, representing us in UNESCO, and she has made it one of her priorities to pursue UNESCO programs and action that will stamp out, if possible, educational systems that preach hatred against any other ethnic group, or religion, or whatever it may be.
There are specific actions that UNESCO has taken to date, to engage in reviving educational curricula. They've done this in Iraq, they've done it in Afghanistan, and we think that that's a very effective way of making sure that you do not create an environment of hatred that could later lead to people turning in the direction of extremism. So we are very eager to use UNESCO, and our new participation in UNESCO to address this problem, and are very open to other suggestions on where we might focus our efforts.
REP. SMITH: Before going to our next panelist, just if there's a lesson to be learned, if we look at the textbooks that UNRA has permitted to be used for the Palestinians, and I actually did an amendment on it not so long ago, and spent hours pouring through textbooks, English translations, that demonized Israel, and carried very clear anti-Semitic references. You don't teach a generation of 8, 9, and 10-year-olds hate, and then expect them to be accepting and tolerant when it's actually in the textbook. It would seem to me that UNESCO could play a very leading role, and I appreciate your thoughts on that.
Mr. Wayne, did you want to speak on OSCE?
MR. WAYNE: On OSCE I was going to, with your permission, turn to some of my colleagues perhaps for a reaction, since I've had experience working in the European bureau with OSCE, very positive, and I think the concept is a very interesting one. I've heard Max Kampelman's ideas on this, but as it pertains to a part of the world that is not my area of expertise, perhaps I could turn to Mr. Dibble.
MR. DIBBLE: Certainly, I think the principles that animate OSCE, and the Helsinki Final Act are applicable in the Middle East. The idea that there should be a systematic, cooperative effort between the countries in the region, and outside, to achieve certain political objectives is an important one. But, I think the beginnings of such an effort are contained in some of the communications from the Sea Island Summit, and the Initiative on the Broader Middle East and North Africa.
I think that free and fair elections, and democracy are what was on people's minds when they went into Sea Island, and as they came out. I think the reason it may not be as specifically addressed in the communique as we might want, I think there are a number of reasons for that. First of all, It's clear from our own experience, and what we're seeing in Iraq that democracy is a messy prospect, it's hard to do if you're starting from scratch, as we are in Iraq, even under relatively good conditions, as we are in Iraq.
Second, what we are looking for, what I think is important is that pressure for this kind of reform, not just reform, but democratic reform, needs to come from the inside, from the population, from organizations, within each country. That itself is difficult, because people do not necessary see democracy as achieving what their immediate objectives might be, which are such things as education for their kids, employment for themselves, justice, lack of corruption, things like that, which are pretty concrete things. How do you-how does democracy automatically get you those things? That-that message has to sink in first, I think before we can start getting very specific about what happens next.
The final point I would make is that it's important also to foster a diversity of views outside-within what we will call the opposition in many of the countries in the region because many people will argue that really there are only two choices. There is the regime or the government, and there is extremist Islam, and those are the choices you have if you open us up now. There's-there clearly needs to be more political space and more political organization, and that takes time. But that's I think the direction where everybody intends to go, and for that reason, we do have a basis for cooperation among ourselves.
REP. CHRIS SMITH: Do you want to comment on the OSCE?
MR. DIBBLE: I have no expertise to comment on.
REP. CHRIS SMITH: Mr. Wayne-Secretary Wayne.
MR. WAYNE: On OSCE I would just add, from my European experience, sir, there certainly is a lot that can be learned, tremendously positive through the history of that organization and the continuing work of that organization. We've also looked at the OECD as an organization on the economic cooperation side that we think can share some lessons. And, in fact, they have a very interesting initiative they've just started on the whole investment area, working with the countries of the Middle East.
But on your question about terrorist financing, we have a policy coordinating committee, a PCC, that's been established under the auspices of the National Security Council, and we bring together there on a regular basis the intelligence, the law enforcement communities, State, Treasury, Homeland Security, Justice and Defense, and we sit together, we look through strategic targets, look at the tactics, decide what looks like the best set of kinds of activities to take, what information is available. It's a process that we've developed over the last three years that has brought this group of agencies and individuals in different departments together and really forged a very good set of team working activities. And we're-we continue to perfect it as we go along, but we've actually made a lot of forward- looking progress, again at making sure that we select the right set of tools to try to disrupt terrorist financing networks.
REP. CHRIS SMITH: And that's chaired by who?
MR. WAYNE: It's under the auspices of the National Security Council.
REP. CHRIS SMITH: Is there one person that the buck stops with him or her?
MR. WAYNE: At the National Security Council, I think what we've done is made it work in parallel to the CSG that Frank and Cofer attend. So, we have a synergy between the overall counterterrorism effort and the financial part, which is really a subgroup of that broader effort.
REP. CHRIS SMITH: Ambassador Harty, just very briefly, and Secretary Harrison, you might want to comment on any of the public diplomacy thoughts, but the Commission does talk about significant improvements and that, you know, gives, I think, a very, very encouraging read on what you're doing. We appreciate your testimony, especially your written submission that elaborated on a number of specifics.
But, have any of those individuals been reprimanded who may have processed those earlier applications that had "Destination: Hotel, USA" and things of that kind? I mean, I've actually looked at a lot of those myself and was surprised that such a glaring omission, or even commission, where foolish things were put into the-in the area where, you know, a more meaningful statement could have been made about the college you're going to attend, or where you're going to go, weren't there. I mean, it's almost like 101, it should have been caught. Has anyone been held to account on that?
MS. HARTY: Sir, thank you for the question. We have a system in place that requires every single visa applicant's name to be checked against our class database, almost 18 million names in it. And that if that is not in fact done, then an officer is formally written up, castigated. That has happened several times over the years. But for the specific example of whether or not somebody failed to get more information on the destination hotel or what address they might be going to, I can't actually quantify that for you. Supervisors are required to review both issuances and refusals, and supervisors will, around the world in all 211 posts, certainly make sure that people are doing the most assiduous they job they can in doing the job, but I can't quantify how many numbers that might have come down to.
REP. CHRIS SMITH: For the record, could you provide us some amplification on what may or may not have happened to those who process these applications in Jeddah?
MS. HARTY: Absolutely.
REP. CHRIS SMITH: Thank you. Mr. Menendez.
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REP. SMITH: If the gentleman would yield just for one second, I would hope, Mr. Dibble, in addition to the reforms you talked about Saudi Arabia continues to be a CPC country, country of particular concern, because of its ongoing religious repression. So I would hope that would be added to the list.
REP. LEACH: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. First as kind of an aside, because the issue of UNESCO has been raised, I want to compliment the administration. We spent over a decade not being a member of UNESCO-one of the least responsible circumstances that I know of for one of the least dangerous international organizations ever developed. How to lead it constructively is really of great interest, and this administration has chosen to return to UNESCO, and I think that is quite proper.
I would like also to say, on behalf of I believe the American people-the first lady of the United States is the honorary ambassador for UNESCO's Decade on Literacy, and I think that is an extraordinarily appropriate way to lead. And I think we all ought to respect that. The other thing-as I'm listening to Secretary Swigert I want to comment on, because it's kind of awkward for us, and yet it may interestingly have some pluses for the United States that our perceived brooking of the United Nations has caused many other countries to suggest that they want to rely more on the United Nations. And this may have some dismaying implications from time to time. On the other hand, it may have implications that the United States can constructively lead with. After all, we have a vested interest in expanding international law. We have a vested interest in seeking greater allegiance to international law. And to the degree that the U.N. is wisely led, this can be helpful to the United States, and here I think I speak for virtually all my colleagues in saying we have a great deal of respect and confidence in Ambassador Danforth. And so this gives us some prospect of helping lead in modest kinds of ways to a better world.
Now on a little more difficult set of theoretical notions, I'd like to ask Ambassador Black-here we're-this is 8/19/04, which is almost three years from 9/11/01. Are we safer today?
MR. BLACK: Well, that's the excellent question that all of us think about. You know, when my mother, when she asks me the question, my answer to her is, Yes, you are-you're a lot safer. And I've been there --
REP. LEACH: Where's she hiding?
MR. BLACK: Sorry? Undisclosed location. When it comes to counterterrorism I always told people, you know, I used to do country before country was cool, and I was back in the beginning and I've seen it come forward, and I absolutely guarantee you that the procedures and processes that have been put in place and the attention that has been devoted to this make us a lot safer. And I think one of the reasons we have been struck is that we have combined enhanced capabilities in both offense-whether it's America on its own, but primarily the United States working with others. That's where the real success is. And if you look at numbers of terrorists arrested and detained and the like, you'll find that the cutting edge in a lot of these activities are foreigners-not even Americans-we have been supporting their activities. That blended in with more coordinated intelligence and a stronger defense here at home. So for a potential terrorist the hurdles and sequence that they have to come are harder, higher, and they are always changing and becoming more formidable. So the answer is yes.
The secondary answer is, unfortunately, which I would like to tell my mother, is that, no, we are not absolutely safe. This is an ongoing process. We have to keep at it. If you stop-sir, if you stop, then the probability of going struck goes up geometrically. You have to stay ahead of them, you have to keep on them, you have to give them no quarter, and you have to stop them before they're able to circumvent these hurdles. So I think we're a lot better off and we're on the right track, and I feel a lot better about it. Well, that's not to say we can't be struck, but we're a lot safer than we were before.
REP. LEACH: Well, I appreciate that, and I certainly hope you're right. The fact that I'm not perfectly convinced is just a personal thing, but I think all of us hope you're correct.
Do you-can you assess to the committee do you think there are more or fewer terrorists or sympathizers to terrorists let's say in relationship to the time period of 9/11 in the world environment?
MR. BLACK: Yeah, the al Qaeda organization clearly we remain the most interested in has been devastated as a result of international action against them. I mean, if you're interested, I can go in through some statistics, but they're all very impressive. That's good news. The bad news is that we don't have them all. Until we catch them all we have a problem. Although they are less efficient and they are increasingly defensive to overcome our efforts to catch them-that's all to the good news-the challenge is that there are a significant number, and comparatively in terms of direct threat-I think an increasing number of lower skilled more localized individuals that have been victimized by incitement and to other extents influenced by other factors-economics, lack of education, other factors come into play. So I think essentially the counterterrorism picture is tending to change from one organization that we certainly are getting on top of. There are no absolutes in counterterrorism. If there's one of them left you still have a problem and they can get through. But in the aggregate a very good-that group is being engaged. Now what we need to look at and which is so positive, sir, Mr. Chairman, is having a distinguished group like this is that the fight increasingly will be taken on by the people that are represented by their functions at this table. Consular, international organizations, and efforts in public diplomacy will become increasingly important as we maintain the classical sort of counterterrorism press.
REP. LEACH: Well, I appreciate that. And again I hope your perspective is correct, and I stress that in hopefulness, although one of the things we've learned is that a free society and a sophisticated society is probably more vulnerable to terrorism than other kinds of societies, and perfect defense is difficult.
I'd like to ask one final question to Ms. Rodley. One of the aspects of intelligence-and there was a lot of the 9/11 report that relates to how we structure intelligence-that in a time of war it's natural that disproportionate governmental decisionmaking goes to the Department of Defense. In a non-war setting or pre-war setting one would think in international relations the principal locus of decisionmaking would be the Department of State. One has a sense-and I cannot assert this with total confidence-but one has a sense that in the post-9/11 world disproportionate shifts in intelligence emphasis was given to a small group at the Department of Defense that may have been misled, and that there is a very strong feeling that the Department of State and the CIA have a better sense for the Muslim world than some that were advising DOD. And that one has a sense that there was an over reliance at DOD on kind of proxy intelligence gatherers-that is on the expat community from Iraq. Is this a perspective that is shared by you, and does this have any implications for how intelligence is intended to be gathered under new arrangements that are on the table?
MS. RODLEY: Thank you very much for that question. That's an important question, and something that we've spent a lot of time thinking about and discussing. One of our key concerns in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research as we participated in the process to talk about the details of intelligence community reform is the need to preserve competitive analysis. And I think this gets at your question. The U.S. intelligence community has been structured for a long time around the concept of competitive analysis-smart, dedicated people in different places looking at the same sets of information, and sometimes coming to the same conclusion and sometimes coming to different conclusions. And our concern is that any reforms that do take place not remove this essential feature that the intelligence community has. If anything we would like to see this feature enhanced.
One of the things that the Bureau of Intelligence and Research is famous for is for having a relatively large number of dissenting views relative to our size. We think that in this way we add value to the intelligence community, to the community products to which we contribute. And so that's where I would like to see a lot of the focus of the community reform be placed.
REP. LEACH: Let me --
REP. SMITH: Would my friend yield briefly on that answer?
REP. LEACH: Of course.
REP. SMITH: Ms. Rodley, would you then suggest that perhaps DEA should be brought in earlier? I asked the question of the 9/11 panelists, the commission panelists, about whether or not they ought to be part of this sharing of information, because obviously drug financing is a major part of this effort. I thank my friend for yielding.
MS. RODLEY: If I understand your question, it's should DEA become part of the intelligence community?
REP. SMITH: Yes.
MS. RODLEY: I'll have to take that question, because I really haven't thought about it. But I would say more generally that we support all of the efforts that the community is making right now to make sharing of intelligence easier, faster and more routine. The intelligence community is undergoing a huge cultural shift. We're moving away from the organizing principle of "need to know" which is how we always thought about classified information, to "need to share" as the organizing principle. And that's a shift of tectonic proportions. So I think that sharing can be done without people necessarily being co-located, although in some cases co-location will be the right answer. But sharing can be done in a variety of ways.
REP. LEACH: Well, just to return, I share agreement with your observations, although they have very little to do with the precise question, but I appreciate the observations. And I would also point out that having had some experience with working with INR that INR is an entity into itself that has a client base that you described earlier. But it derives a lot of information from its clients; that is, posts in the field. And that is a very important function, and it means that if you were to weaken the State Department's bureau you'd be really weakening the government's capacity to develop intelligence in a credible way.
Now, likewise at the Department of Defense there are specific interrelationships with military forces abroad and with militaries of other governments abroad that provide ties that are very interesting and important, and I think it's a reason why the Department of Defense should have an intelligence capacity too, and at the same time that you should have overriding coordination. And I personally like the way the 9/11 report has cut the apple, as long as it's understood that institutions of our government have specific ties that can be-that are based on those institutions, not simply that they have a body of people that happen to be interested in the subject. It's the way the Department of State is structured with information going down and coming up that doesn't well deal in an outside the Department of State environment. And that's why it's very critical that your particular bureau be maintained in a very strong and powerful way and why it's very critical that the Department of Defense has its own intelligence- gathering capabilities, and at the same time to keep, as Ambassador Black who comes from the CIA notes, the Central Intelligence Agency being at the crux of so much of its own gathering capacities and coordinating capacities. Then the question becomes how you better coordinate all this and how you better shift it down. And anyone that's ever worked in one of these departments-and I spent five years of my life in your institution-it has always struck me how much incredible information comes through, and yet there are so few people that can utilize this at any given point in time-so how you focus it. And Ambassador Taylor has outlined some coordinating efforts within the department, as Mrs. Harrison has, that are very impressive, and I think are interesting for the public to think through of the nature of structured meetings and their import. And it's good to know that the department is not asleep. And that is not a modest insignificance. It's of startling international concern.
In any regard, I want to thank all of you for your inputs, and I'm appreciative of the perspective that you brought before us. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
REP. SMITH: Thank you very much, Chairman Leach. Mr. Green. And I want to appreciate Mr. Sherman's courtesy in allowing Mr. Green to precede him. He has a flight to catch, and I thank you very much, Mr. Sherman.
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REP. SMITH: Thank you very much, Mr. Pence.
Just to conclude with some final questions and any comments any of our panelists might want to provide. Again, this will provide I think this committee and the Congress, the House especially, with some very useful insights as we craft our legislative response to the 9/11 commission in that ongoing effort to be as safe as we possibly can for Americans at home and abroad.
Let me just ask first, Secretary Harrison, to you, as we all know you and your shop, as well as the 9/11 commission, put the heavy emphasis on public diplomacy. One of the aspects that I've noticed for a long time is that some of our ambassadors are not always as proactive, or even reactive, as they could be in telling this story. We don't want spinmeisters, we don't want spin doctors. We want honest presentation, and to be done so aggressively. What can be done to further that, you know, in terms of getting all of our-some ambassadors do an exemplary job, others are more laid back and less effective, as are their missions, because very often the zeitgeist of a mission is set from the very top by an ambassador.
Secondly, let me just ask you, Ambassador Taylor, how many DS agents are dedicated full time-at least on paper-to visa and passport enforcement? And one of the concerns all of us have had in the past is that many-I don't know how many-I would look to you to tell us-of those get called off those kinds of investigations for security details and other kinds of-important, but it dilutes our ability to do what we have to do?
I'd say to Secretary Rocca one of the findings in the commission was that-and I just would repeat it briefly-we heard again and again that the money for assistance-this is Afghanistan of course-is allocated so rigidly that on the ground one U.S. agency cannot improvise or pitch in to help another agency even in small ways when a few thousand dollars would make the difference. We know the Afghan Freedom Support Act sought to convey or to empower or to enable that kind of ability. What can be done? What's your recommendations on that?
And, finally, just a-maybe Ambassador Black might want to touch this-or anyone else-is there any consideration of reorganizing the security intelligence and law enforcement and/or the counterterrorism to respond to the 9/11 commission recommendations? Will there be a reorg? We all know reorganizations are very often-we went through that-Chris McGilly (ph), our staff director here, when we were doing the rewrites back in the mid 1990s-and just doing the State Department-whether it be USIA and all the other agencies, and that was a mammoth undertaking. It took years, because there were interest and authorities and important functions that could get diminished if you didn't do it right, if you just moved the boxes around what have you accomplished. But is that reorg something that's being actively looked at right now? Ms. Harrison or Secretary Harrison, if you could begin?
MS. HARRISON: Thank you very much. If I may just take a minute to respond, Mr. Chairman, to your question earlier in terms of Chairman Wolf and really thank him so much, not only for his support of the strategic need to broadcasts, but also for his interest in public diplomacy and really being the spearhead for the first advisory group on public diplomacy headed by Ambassador Djerejian. And many of the recommendations in the September 11th report were foreshadowed by what Ambassador Djerejian put in place, and in fact went a long way in helping us to guide a lot of the things that we wanted to have to strengthen public diplomacy.
In terms of ambassadors being engaged, one of the things I found out-and I've traveled a lot in this job, because I feel if you don't go you really don't know beyond the brochure-is that you have very different personalities, and what our ambassadors need in terms from us-it's the information, it's the speakers, it's that constant contact. What they are doing, and which we haven't really publicized a great deal, and they have, the majority of them are doing this-they are now moving beyond what I call the traditional Rolodex and going out and speaking to schools. If I can reference the former undersecretary of public diplomacy and public affairs, Margaret Tutwiler, when she was ambassador to Morocco, really set the stage for that kind of activity. And when I was in Islamabad, our ambassador there would leave what's basically a fortress to get out and to interact with the community. We are helping our ambassadors through structures called "American Corners," because as security is required we also have to make sure that that security does not prevent us from connecting at a grass-roots level. And I know that in terms of the ambassadors that e-mail me directly that I talk to, they want to do this. And I think perhaps we have to do a better job giving them the materials, the speakers, the programs that will enable them to get out. And I am not a Foreign Service officer, but I just wanted to say right here that I have been just amazed and impressed by the dedication and the bravery-especially within this environment that we are operating now of our Foreign Service officers and our ambassadors. Thank you.
MR. TAYLOR: Yes, sir, thank you for the question, Mr. Chairman. It's a-I have 1,400 special agents, and any day any one of them could be involved. But I-the question you-the problem you refer to is one that I addressed very early on in my tenure as the assistant secretary after speaking to my good friend -- (laughter) -- Maura Harty. We decided that visa fraud was a priority. And if it's a priority you have to dedicate resources to it. And I directed a minimum-a minimum-of 129 DS special agents would be full-time available to do visa and passport fraud in the CONUS. That doesn't count for the 400 that I have overseas that work that on a day-to-day basis.
We have gotten rave reviews back from our U.S. Attorneys about that commitment. Agents are available. They are working those cases. I think our arrest statistics demonstrate the results that come when you dedicate resources to that. And we will dedicate as much as we need, both within our own resources, but I think it's also important to point out the outreach that we've done with the FBI, with ICE, to leverage their capability and bring their capability to bear with our capability against this program. And I think it has had the kind of results that we were looking for.
Mr. Chairman, if I might, you asked earlier about DEA, and I think we often get caught up in words about intelligence and information. I like to use the term "information." And every law enforcement agency in this country has information that can help us in the counterterrorism fight. Our challenge is how do we get that information into the intel analysts in a way that protects the rights of our citizens from exposure to-or their personal information being used in an inappropriate way. But DEA, state and local law enforcement all have very important information, and the challenge we face and what TTIC has I think begun a very important process in doing is to integrate information-not just intelligence, but all the information that we have that will allow us to be more effective in spotting these things before they happen and taking action. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
MS. ROCCA: Mr. Chairman, on the question of the AFSA money, we have used mover $300 million of it for the drawdown authority. I think the problem that the 9/11 commission raised essentially has to do with the fact that in the field the language of AFSA-this is not a complaint about AFSA at all, because I think we've fixed the problem, so let me-but the language-the money that comes from AFSA seems to be tied, or we interpret it as being tied to a military- related endeavor-building roads, bridges, or drawdown authority. So what we have happening now in the field to correct this problem is the Commanders Emergency Preparedness Fund is working very well to take care of exactly the problems that the commission raised.
We're also working better-the country teams that are out in the PRTs that we now have DOD, AID and State Department working together to get the funding, we have been using the ESF for democracy, humanitarian and other non-military related. And sometimes there have been to constraints in terms of how you-constraints on AID spending the money. Now the country teams are working better so that the flow-we believe the flow is working better, but it's something that we're keeping very close track of. Thank you.
MR. BLACK: Yes, sir. In terms of potential reorganization, we have no imminent plans to do that from a counterterrorism standpoint. But since our mission is to enable others, we are looking very closely at how your recommendations vis-a-vis the 9/11 commission report play out, because since our mission is to help them to do their job, it will be very important to us to see the role of the national intelligence director, how the intelligence community is formulated out, how it interacts with homeland security. So essentially from a counterterrorism standpoint we'd look to see how they are going to organize themselves; and then we will adjust of necessity, so that we can help them to do their job.
REP. SMITH: Thank you. Would anyone like to add anything before we conclude? If not, I would like to thank you wholeheartedly for your very significant counsel and recommendations. There's an enormous wealth of talent sitting at that table. This is an historic hearing having so many people from such disparate walks-different assistant secretaries and the like. So we were very grateful, and it helps us to do our job better. So we are very deeply appreciative. The hearing is adjourned.