Defcon 3 7-18-2012
What foreign policy challenges is the White House dealing with today? Plus – What impact could defense cuts have on our military?
- Duration 26:05
- Date Jul 18, 2012
What foreign policy challenges is the White House dealing with today? Plus – What impact could defense cuts have on our military?
Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
And death -- -- this time each week.
Here on foxnews.com.
Live where we dig deeper into the national security issues of the day.
I'm Kate Taylor brown and we want you to join in the discussion too so buys Twitter it KT McFarland -- bar live chat.
First up today sequestration.
Big word big cuts at the automatic.
500 billion dollar defense budget cuts that are set to begin January 1.
The house or services committee is holding hearings this week and my command -- following the -- capital held Mike what can tell.
That's right with that facing a half trillion dollars in defense cuts other alive people here on Capitol Hill asking.
What precisely is the administration's plan in terms of what is going to be cuts -- right now on the house floor lawmakers taking up a bill asking for the administration to be more transparent about.
Precisely which programs they're looking to -- As sequestration is due to start to kick in in the new year and so some leading lawmakers are expressing a lot of frustration.
How would this huge cut about to come.
How we heard this from a key -- short time ago.
The United States here that aren't really experience seamless would be -- his political -- It is today.
Also today were expecting the governor of Virginia Bob McDonnell on the Virginia delegation here in congress.
That have an event talking about the impact on Virginia was 27.
Military bases many defense contractors there's great concern in states like Virginia what all of this is going to need to that State's economy.
-- One more thing because I was watching the hearings along with you this morning one of the things I found interesting is that there's apparently.
A law that says the defense contractors.
Have to tell their employees sixty to ninety days before.
January 1 that they may have to be let -- -- in other -- pink slips are gonna go out in the mail right before the election what was -- reaction about.
What's fascinating because I actually have a neighbor who works for Lockheed Martin told me that he expects virtually every employee there to get a pink slip.
Because they don't know exactly which programs are going to be cut in so you can imagine the political impact as well if pink slips are gonna go out to all these defense contractors.
In battleground states like Virginia.
And what the impact will be in terms of politics but also the economy.
What lawmakers heard today is that.
These potential cuts are already having an impact take a listen.
On I think the very simple and logical premise that if we're going to engage in significant reductions in the workforce in January it's imprudent to bring people on for six months.
Concern about jobs in the United States.
These defense contractors are warning that there are already.
In effect freezing jobs because.
They're worried that there won't be work.
In six months -- T.
Well I have Michael what are they talking about for that number of people who potentially are unemployed once these cuts Pickens.
I've heard estimates of anywhere from one point five to two million people when -- take -- account the government jobs that would be lost also the defense contractor jobs and also peripheral businesses.
Around those industries small businesses that may contribute parts for example.
To a defense contractor in -- It should have quite a ripple effect which is why a lot of people are starting starting to feel the heat here on Capitol Hill to find alternate cuts a different way of doing this.
To try to make sure there's not an economic disaster -- -- Okay I'm gonna ask him -- toughest question in Washington right now you've been covering this after decades what's your gut tell you will they find a way.
Around sequestration costs or raise your neighbor going to be unemployed like you think you'd like -- Well -- I gotta say I thought that there was some momentum building to everybody realizing they've got to get something done but.
When you consider the senate majority leader Harry Reid.
And the Republican leader Mitch McConnell had a 45 minute fight on the senate floor this morning.
Over who's to blame for this stalemate this deadlock on Capitol Hill he makes you wonder if they're gonna find any common ground to get this done.
The White House today said that.
They would like action now to try to address these cuts in a better way.
But if not they're gonna have to do it during the lame duck session when there's a lot of other financial issues and -- There's definite reason for anxiety at this point because -- but he seems to agree these cuts are not good.
-- you know where's the way out.
Okay and I can rack I capital -- that might if there's something to bite on the floor of the senate next time we see you.
I want you to be wearing a helmet and a flak jacket because you're gonna yeah you're going to be in -- battleground.
Thank you -- and take a break and then be back and.
I welcome back to Jeff country -- -- your questions.
On Twitter or dirt or during a live chat on get them to our guests.
Right Alec our congressman Mo Brooks -- Republican from Alabama and most importantly he's -- on the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Or sorry the house armed services committee and he was just -- Wheeling some of those people you've just heard about I'm hearings this morning.
Congressman thank you so much for joining us now I -- here's a story we're -- pretty significant and they were talking.
You have the defense industry executives were telling you when you when you've heard them.
While this is it continuing.
In a series of house armed services committee hearings that we've had going back to last year.
Where we try to emphasize to the public the adverse affect the sequestration can have.
On our national defense today's hearing was getting his best we could it.
Testimony from individuals and the private sector who could best describe the adverse effect on America's industrial base that supports our national offense.
And also how badly misguided the sequestration policy -- Yeah I was watching the -- this morning as well I saw you asking some questions.
-- one of the things that they were discussing is when you put the national security part of it aside forget about you know how do we defend the country.
They -- talking about new massive defense cuts.
That are gonna result in layoffs.
And people are going to have to employees and defense contractors.
Or even Defense Department employees -- just gonna start getting pink slips in the mail.
And the next week or two what what policy implication that they were giving you have that this is gonna have on the economy and on the politics your congressman Europe for reelection.
What happens come November if -- a lot of people -- some of those districts have just been told they're out of a job.
Well first let me talk about the numbers.
House armed services committee is estimated that one of the options under sequestration.
Is strictly personnel cuts.
Under that scenario you're talking about 700000.
DOD civilian support workers and private sector support workers losing their jobs 700000.
To put that into perspective last month our economy generated watch -- thousand jobs and so this is at least a ten month period time.
In which we would at best be holding her -- The -- into that the multiplier effect with the national association of manufactures talking about.
Over a million private sector jobs that will be lost so we're here talking about a big hit only American economy.
-- sequestration goes into effect for example in Virginia alone over a 100000 jobs are estimated that to be lost now the political consequences of all that.
-- that depends on how the public interprets what's going on.
I hope they'll adopt the view that I -- with many other conservatives in the United States congress.
And that is national offense is the number one priority of the federal government it's in the constitution it's our obligation.
Yet we have a White House -- United States senate that readily.
Want to put our national security at risk and cost America in excess of a million jobs.
They hearings today we're focusing on the defense industry and the cuts and -- the personnel and defense industry ramifications but as you said you've been having a series of hearings.
On the national security implications of this.
-- 'cause you're talking about -- credit capabilities are we gonna do without.
If we have these cuts you know we're pivoting to Asia but at the same time in the last week -- the last 48 hours with our crisis in the Persian golf.
And yet we're gonna talk about a much smaller navy.
Walk us through that.
Sure you're talking about America having the smallest army since -- to the smallest navy.
Since World War I.
And the smallest air force in the history of our country those are big impacts on our ability to project power and influence.
As we try to preserve peace around the world.
One analogy is to look at the capabilities.
The United States and our defense.
Estimates are that this sequestration.
Or reduce America's national defense capabilities -- roughly 25%.
That's up big hit.
Okay congress -- and when you're out taking part and add 20% to experiment right.
This is I'm targeting you just like I'm right you're -- television news but we have an audience that participates in the conversation.
So one of Arab viewers -- sent me a question to ask you.
He says I've got a question for the congressman.
What is the effect of China's action with all of our allies in the South China Sea what every time we have a fleet exercise.
They sailed -- up uninvited -- worries were conducting.
A military exercise right now our around Hawaii once they effect of the Chinese may be -- our western Pacific and South China Sea as abilities.
Well due to bad economic policies by this administration and this congress over significant number of years.
We have strength in the Chinese economy.
As a Chinese economy has strengthened that is enabled them to flex their muscles so to speak as they build up their military.
And what you're seeing are signs of that in the western.
-- excuse -- the western Pacific Ocean.
And the gentleman who are lady I can't tell who made the caller -- -- that.
Presidents are -- and it came from Atlantic okay well.
What is transpiring as America's growing weaker.
Because of unsound economic policies because of deficits and debts that are accumulating.
Other nations are going to flex their muscles and trying to increase their sphere of influence as America's sphere of influence declines.
I'm one of those -- again very strongly that we have to have.
As -- national offenses is necessary to ensure without doubt that America secure in the things that we do not only at home but also abroad.
This sequestration that has been foisted upon us by Harry Reid and the senate Democrats along with the president states.
It's very counterproductive it puts us at risk in enables our photos.
To do what you're seeing now with China.
-- -- good to us about the crisis in -- and AM Persian -- very we're sending a not an aircraft carrier their earlier than anticipated there ahead of schedule.
In order to keep two carriers in the region as we rotate two of them out.
-- -- be able to do this sort of thing have a kind of defense we're talking about defense budget we're talking about.
-- say five years from now.
-- sequestration does in fact take place you're looking at the cancellation or moth -- of one maybe two carrier battle groups not just the aircraft carrier.
But all the supporting vessels.
When you lose those kinds of capabilities.
You also lose the capability heard -- have a diminished capacity.
Protecting the sea lanes in places like the Persian -- that supply so much oil that is vital to the world's economy.
I don't know what's gonna happen.
If the United States no longer has the capability.
Of influencing Persian gulf events and keeping that supply of oil available.
To everyone that concerns that -- -- the -- A -- will be talking to congressman now works Republican of Alabama house armed services committee member in what is a very busy day and I know you've carved out the time for us.
-- between votes in between hearings and been on the hot seat so thank you so much for your time and come back and talk to us again but we figure out whether sequestration is gonna happen.
Was my pleasure and thank you for what you're doing in helping to better educate the public about the threat of sequestration.
There -- national security and our economy.
Thank you congressman.
-- take a break and then come back and talk about some good years which is a fantastic.
Navy exercise and Hawaiian -- -- Hi welcome back to death country you know -- and twelve other nations are taking -- in the world's largest international maritime exercise.
Off the coast of Hawaii it's a unique training opportunity involving disaster relief.
Maritime security -- control and war fighting.
Our own Adam Housley is covering the operation from pearl are over alum Adam I understand that -- They don't call -- enemy I used to fight but we're just taking part in this exercise for the first time we're gonna tell us.
They -- something else -- is kind of interesting to see here is you know coming of Pearl Harbor of course -- -- Pearl Harbor memorial they Arizona.
And just down the dock for me is a Japanese warship.
Only a few hundred yards away from that memorial so what a difference just a couple of generations and makes the C a Japanese warship -- very close.
To where the the Arizona still rests with was with so -- of -- sailors in the bottom of the of the harbor here quite interesting -- cooperation taking plays at that right now we're getting in front.
-- Canadian warship on its way over to the Persian gulf to.
Help with the war on terror over there of course we know what's happened in the last couple of days in that region and the ongoing tensions that have been there for.
A very long time we also is going on the Pacific in the continued buildup of China back -- on the carrier on the C a lot of smaller nations like Malaysia Vietnam.
Now adding to their navies in responsible -- -- This -- a bi annual exercise takes place every two years this year more nations and ever before twenties you're taking part including Russia including Japan.
And a smaller countries like Vietnam as I mentioned or even -- got.
And what's happening what's happening is is an incredible support network being set up here a lot of communication we had a chance to go out.
Off the coast here of Oahu -- -- is firsthand.
Here's what we found.
Air operations from the deck of the amphibious assault ship the USS Essex.
Sailors or Marines on board along with the military personnel from countries like Malaysia Canada and even Tonga -- -- -- you -- wolf the big nation like America.
Get it out as good as this and they -- -- and this is where impact the world's largest international maritime exercise.
With 22 nations 42 ships 200 aircraft.
People all taking part in the number of off of the coast of Hawaii.
One of the operation for -- packets all the -- back.
The ability of the countries within the region.
To bring their capabilities together benefits not only the United States but the region -- And everybody -- a little differently everyone has techniques that are different they have different terminology different procedures different standards and in -- these operations -- very complex.
And it's the complexity along with the military buildup in the Pacific any increased pressure to respond to humanitarian crisis.
That means cooperation now amongst allies is more important than ever.
We're -- interoperability were -- the ability to work together.
You know along the way we're making lifelong friends.
Never -- began the end of June is the first week of August.
They start of the first couple weeks it'll come robbery building exercises here at Pearl Harbor a lot of classroom work gonna go out on the water -- -- -- maritime.
And also some land components as well.
I you know besides the buildup in the Pacific -- so many nations are concerned about you also have with a -- and humanitarian response.
And there's also one more aspect being worked on today of course we're here doing live reports so we -- have a chance to see yet.
-- the green fleet it's something that the US navy is really putting a lot of effort into its.
Trying to turn a lot of the ships and and a lot of our planes.
In -- using other fuels not do really rely so much on petroleum products.
-- so far there admit having some success with that in case the case -- you know a lot of times what happens with.
The military in the space program eventually -- itself down into what we uses consumers so if that is something they can do it over that would benefit us as a whole city.
I'm Adam -- stands is big is it with the groups that you're talking to the very all the nations.
You know when you have a military exercise it's a military exercises designed to look at.
An enemy or potential conflict you mention.
That you're looking at everything from coastal to fans to humanitarian relief.
-- -- proper ability but you're also looking at a potential war game who's the enemy in this case Adam.
And absolutely it's a very good points of the we brought up and talking about.
You know they don't want to ever tell you who the enemy is bomb what did you prepare for what the enemy might do.
I had a means anything from a small -- attack like we've been up thoughts on the front of that you know over in the Persian gulf just couple of days ago to something much larger.
I'm very well off camera talk to -- about the concern that they have at least a large nations will.
By the cancer and they have for China they ability at the China has to do basically shut down parts of the South China Sea and -- waters that -- you believe or not theirs and that's pretty much something that's.
It pretty well widely held as you know KG.
The smaller nations will also talk about that because they're the ones that can be bullied around a little bit we -- the Philippines specifically have.
Openly talked about the fact that they -- here.
And they -- -- -- come anyway but they're definitely -- paying more attention before.
Because of what they're dealing with right now with -- so while they won't say -- enemy for example or they won't say.
That Iran's -- any -- they will say that they have to prepare in case.
-- nations such as that might do something so yeah it is a war game.
Absolutely -- offensive and defense have different maneuvers out there.
-- but they are bring in the humanitarian part not to downplay anything but because it has become such a significant part of what we do.
And audiotape -- percent experience we've seen this -- -- In Haiti.
In Japan in southeast Asia back in 2005 after that tsunami there -- There is really three strong component series you mention the whole idea of war games is really the first one.
A camera Adam Housley in Hawaii thanks so much for -- -- -- had to -- They attempted -- -- and our -- -- our resident.
Been referred to as a national.
By someone -- has -- General David Petraeus.
We're gonna talk to doctor herb London -- -- in the studio now and I figured that with national security issues having no part in this presidential campaign.
Probably a mistake because we all know that there's an October surprise that often happens in presidential years.
And we do now that any new president is gonna walk -- with his hands full of issues so doctor London herb -- -- Chairman and our president Harrison has an institute now the Manhattan institute tell us what you think if you're advising the president -- -- -- whoever years.
What is he gonna face when he walks into the Oval Office.
Let's not question this is a turbulent period that could be an attack in Iran obviously one launch by the Israelis.
The the so called Arab Spring looks more like a nuclear winter every day.
With a lot of imponderables associated with that we don't know what's gonna happen in Syria 171000.
Syrians have been butchered by the -- administration.
So I think that there are many issues and a new president will have to confront and it fits this president the President Obama is an awful lot that's going to be on his plate as well.
Now this administration quite obviously seems perplexed about what's going on.
My hope is that there is a Romney administration they will come and giving very clear fought.
The sort of things that the United States should be doing in these areas and keep in mind with sequestration.
One of the issues that you have is how do you project American power with the kind of retrenchment that is occurring.
Which becomes 1 of the central issues for any new administration.
-- topic -- regions are Middle East right now.
What advice would you give joining new president what options that we have a first of all -- one of the things is we've given an awful lot of talk to sanctions.
-- and the reason why sanctions haven't work.
Is because there's no teeth in the sanctions between nations.
Have the ability to overcome the sanctions when he nations if there's a modest production.
In the kind of activity economic activity they -- with Iran.
That allows them to continue trade negotiations -- nation so we don't really have a sanctions policy.
Number one number two I would freeze all Iranian assets worldwide certainly something that could happen.
With the Europeans coming to the understanding that if there is an Iran with a nuclear weapons he can reach every single European capital.
Number three I would start giving very serious consideration.
To what a military maneuver might look like.
We're not going to sit back the nuclear program and definitely.
But if we can send it back to two with three years that provides us with a window of opportunity and the reason why that window of opportunity becomes so important.
Is because this could lead to regime change if we had a CIA with -- The CIA that could play the role internally.
And again this is another controversial subject that we had a real CIA we could do a lot Syria we could do a lot in Iran.
But unfortunately the CIA has personally don't care what you give me I'm talking about subversive activity within the country fairways -- EIA agents to Syria to Iran which would.
Provide communications network and allow for the people who were dissatisfied with the existing regime to find a network.
What we these people very -- put their lives on the line as Iranians did after the last election but there was no American assistance we didn't even -- -- from the president.
So there's an awful lot that could be done without necessarily putting troops on the ground.
But unfortunately we don't have those capabilities at the moment.
This -- Garth what Israel might deal with Iran progress well.
Israel really faces its existential threat.
In Iran that nuclear weapons could indeed be the final game changer for the Israelis they cannot tolerate a situation with a ran in that position.
Several years ago I met them the minister of -- foreign affairs in Iran.
And I sit -- -- is the goal the anti Shia crescent this desire to spread Iran -- the region he looked and he said.
-- -- -- we want the full moon.
Now that that was very very informative.
What he was really getting at is nuclear weapons -- not only as a military weapon but as a political weapon away at intimidating nations and that part of the region.
And keep in mind what is -- going to do well if they can buy nuclear weapons they're gonna have to have what do Saudi Arabia to do.
Obviously the Sunnis are gonna have to develop their own nuclear weapons capability so there's no question we're going to see the liberation.
Does this nation have an understanding of what that means how our -- our interest affected by this kind of liberation.
And I don't think sufficient thought has been given to that subject -- -- John Bolton on a regular basis I think John is one of the few people who doesn't understand what's at stake here.
This is a very real problem that -- -- going to have to deal with and the -- of operation question I think he's been put on the back burner largely because people do not want to address this issue.
Right okay let's talk about trying to -- -- attract few minutes ago.
What do we do with China well China has a blue water navy and then exercising that -- Taking control over a large part of the region and putting an awful lot of pressure on Japan operating in the China Japan see.
And not only operating in the -- -- -- -- working with the Russians in the kuril islands and other islands that are controlled by the Filipinos why because of the assets of those islands gallons a rocky.
Little plateaus they're not meaningful what they're meaningful because in the case of the Philippines there's natural gas.
In the -- in many -- the cure -- they're also resources that the Russians wanna get the hands of what that the Japanese do the Japanese have only one major ally they can rely on the only counterweight to the Chinese and to the Russians is the United States.
We need to carry a force there to say to the Japanese you're not on your own.
I mean you are you you don't have to go this by yourself go with this by -- the United States is going to provide whatever kind of military support is necessary in this region.
So for the Japanese have not heard that message they want to hear that desperate to hear it.
The Japanese have built up a very significant military force but as the constitution in Japan allows its it's a defense of -- cannot be used for offensive purposes.
The line between offense -- defense is not always clear and at some point.
Section nine of the Japanese constitution is gonna have to be revised they gonna have to develop nuclear weapons even though the constitution at the moment prohibits the Japanese from doing so.
Okay well I certainly -- whoever's the next president of United States calls doctor herb London into the Oval Office and says sit down Herman has have a serious conversation.
Thank you so much for -- always a pleasure to be with you keep.
Well thanks for joining us on a whirlwind tour of the flashpoints around the -- we talked to some of the leading experts saying that they don't.
People like doctor herb London and we -- you into this into the discussion with your questions so.
That's for -- -- National security prices will no doubt continue.
But in -- I think at this time around trying to -- amount.