Saturday, May 25, 2013

From Russia With "Love"

From Family Security Matters.

From Russia with Love, Again

National Defense Industrial Association, Reserve Officers Association and Air Force Association Capitol Hill Breakfast Forum with Mark Schneider, Senior Analyst, National Institute for Public Policy, and Stephen Blank, research professor of National Security Affairs, Army War College, on "Future Russian Strategic Challenges." (For additional information on NDIA/AFA/ROA seminars contact Peter Huessy at

MR. PETER HUESSY: I want to thank you all for being here at the next in our seminar series on nuclear deterrence and missile defense. We're honored today to have two much respected l speakers. Our first speaker is going to be Mark Schneider, who is the senior analyst with the National Institute for Public Policy. And as you know, he and I wrote a piece on Russian missile defense that appeared in Gatestone Institute about six weeks ago. Steve Blank is our other speaker, and he is research professor of national security affairs at the Army War College. And Steve's going to be here in Washington with the American Foreign Policy Council in August.

So, on behalf of ROA and AFA and NDIA, I want to thank you two gentlemen for coming down to talk to us about what I think is a very serious issue. And that is - I remember Dr. Kissinger once quipped that the reason we have arms control in the United States is so we can argue about what American military nuclear forces to eliminate, as opposed to what Russian forces should be eliminated. So would you please welcome our friend from NIPP Mark Schneider?


MR. MARK SCHNEIDER: Thank you. I'm going to speak today about the strategic challenge that Russia poses to the United States, and it's a quite serious one. Russia is increasingly anti-democratic and hostile to the United States. Xenophobia is widespread in Russia. The Kremlin is currently encouraging nationalism and militarizing the country. It constantly attacks the West. And a sizable number of the Russian population sees neighboring countries as part of the Russian zone of influence.

Now this is not me speaking, this is taken from a recent statement by Alexei Kudrin, who until September of 2011 was the finance minister of Russia, and who has just been publicly offered a cabinet position by Vladimir Putin.

The most serious aspect of the Russian threat to the United States is their nuclear use doctrine. They have the lowest nuclear use threshold in the world. Russia reserves the right to introduce nuclear weapons into conventional warfare, and they characterize this, amazingly, as "de-escalation" of the conflict.

In December 2012 the U.S. National Intelligence Council in a report stated, quote, "Nuclear ambitions in the United States and Russia over the last 20 years have evolved in opposite directions. Reducing the role of nuclear weapons in U.S. security strategy is the U.S. objective, while Russia is pursuing new concepts and capabilities for expanding the role of nuclear weapons in its security strategy."

In 2009 the then-commander of the strategic missile force, Lieutenant General Andrey Shvaichenko, outlined what Russian nuclear targeting was about. And actually, there were two or three similar statements made by other generals in roughly the same time period. What he said was, "In peacetime they [he means the strategic nuclear missiles] - are intended to assure deterrence of large-scale non-nuclear and nuclear aggression against Russia and its allies. In a conventional war they ensure that the opponent is forces to cease hostilities on advantageous conditions for Russia by means of single or multiple preventive strikes against the aggressors most important facilities. In a nuclear war, they ensure the destruction of facilities of the opponent's military and economic potential by means of an initial massive nuclear missile strike and subsequent multiple or single nuclear missile strikes."

According to then-chief of the general staff General Nikolai Makarov in 2009, quote, "The strategic nuclear force is for us a sacred issue," unquote. And he said they will provide them whatever level of funding is necessary. Senior Russian officials, including both military and civilian, routinely make nuclear threats, including direct targeting threats against the United States and our allies and threats of preventive or preemptive nuclear attack. That's very common. Indeed, Putin has done that on several occasions when he was president.

There are only two countries in the world that make these types of nuclear threats routinely, and they are Russia and North Korea. In this regard, China is a poor third, but it's apparently catching up because it has just dropped "no first use" from its white paper on national security that was released in the last couple of weeks.

Russia routinely exercises its strategic nuclear forces very openly against the United States in a variety of conflicts, scenarios ranging from strategic nuclear exchanges to theater nuclear exchanges. Russian strategic nuclear forces engaged in a major exercise two weeks before the U.S. presidential election in 2012, when the Kremlin announced a strategic nuclear exercise in which Putin personally directed the nuclear missile launches.

Russia has virtually eliminated its reduction of legacy nuclear forces. Information that was released by the State Department - this is Russian data - in April of 2013 indicate that the number of Russian delivery vehicles actually increased in the two years that New START has been in effect. The number of warheads has declined by 57, but that's apparently just the result of different counting rules that were used in New START compared to the original START Treaty. New START rules don't count in New START submarines going into overhaul.

Russian nuclear modernization programs are amazingly broad by post-Cold War standards. Russia has actually announced the complete modernization of its strategic missile force, both submarines and ICBMs, by 2021. Putin, in April 2012 announced the procurement of 400 new ICBMs by 2020. The Obama administration has said that they are in the process of developing and deploying several new MIRV'ed strategic missiles, both ICBMs and SLBMs, including a new heavy ICBM. And they're currently deploying a new long-range nuclear ALCM.

Reportedly, the new Russian heavy ICBM will carry 10 to 15 warheads. In May 2012 Russia announced the testing of a "new" ICBM. This is apparently the Yars-M, which the commander of the Strategic Missile Forces has just announced will be deployed this year.

The Russians are also talking about something called the Avangard. Now this may or may not be the same missile as the Yar-M, or it may be a further development of the Yar-M. The title of the missile, or the name of the missile, Yar-M, translates into a major modernization or improvement of the MIRV'ed version of the SS-27, which the Russians initially deployed in 2010. So they're already modernizing a missile that's three years old, which is amazing.

They've announced that they're going to develop and deploy a new heavy bomber, a stealthy B-2-like bomber. Recent press reports suggest that the first one will be available in 2020. Now we don't really know whether that's the first prototype or the first production airplane, but in any event in the 2020s they're going to be introducing a major new bomber.

They're in the process of introducing the new Bulava SLBM and the new Borei-class submarine. This year they announced that the fifth and sixth of these submarines will be laid down this year. That's literally the first time since the end of the Cold War that more than one ballistic missile submarine has been laid down in a single year.

They've also announced there will be what they call fifth generation missile submarine carrying both ballistic and cruise missiles that will be available by 2020. And the Russians have announced the development - and press reports say the decision has been made to deploy - a rail mobile ICBM, apparently another version of the SS-27. The problem is that the New START Treaty doesn't say a word about rail mobile ICBMs and this is clearly, at least in the Russian view, in my view as well, not limited by the New START Treaty.

So we are seeing a major modernization program. In comparison, Acting Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottemoeller, summed up what we are doing. And this is a direct quote.

"We are not modernizing. We are not modernizing. That is one of the basic - basics I would say -- principles and rules that have been part of our nuclear posture review and part of our policy."

And that's a remarkably candid description of current policy, which basically at best only partially modernizes our force and replaces systems when they're 40 to 80 years of age, literally. And we have not yet committed to continuing the ICBM force beyond 2030. And none of this takes into account the impact of sequestration, which has got to hurt the possibility of actually implementing the program, such as it is.

What is the administration's reaction to this unprecedented in the post-Cold War period enhancement of Russian nuclear capabilities? Basically, it's more nuclear reductions. We're making nuclear reductions, according to the information released by the State department, much faster than is necessary to comply with the New START Treaty.

We are pursuing minimum modernization programs and we're going to do more arms control. Well, what is this new arms control known to be about? Well, the administration describes it as an intent to negotiate with the Russians further reductions in deployed strategic nuclear systems and limits on both non-deployed nuclear weapons of all types and tactical nuclear weapons.

According to press reports, they are considering numbers in the 300 to 1,100 range for deployed nuclear warhead. Recent reports have suggested about 1,000. The State department advisory committee said 700.

And there are press reports, including in the New York Times, that they intend to evade advice and consent, that they are going to propose to the Russians a political commitment, non-legally binding. And I think the obvious reason for this is they don't expect a good outcome in this negotiation of something that could get serious Congressional support.

And I suspect they will have big problems with the Russians in doing this. The Russians have repeatedly announced they have no interest in post-New START nuclear arms control. This includes Sergei Lavrov, the Foreign Minister, who said this three times during the Russian ratification procedures relating to the New START Treaty. He said also that they intend to increase their number of delivery vehicles and deployed nuclear warheads. And he gave dates for those developments.

Assuming the Obama administration somehow or other gets the Russians to agree to anything like near-term nuclear negotiations, the question is can they come up with anything that meets their objectives or anything that is remotely verifiable? I'm very pessimistic on both of those issues. Their reported desire to evade Congressional oversight suggests that they don't expect to come out with something that's any good or in any real sense of the word "verifiable."

We have two basic problems with verification of the type of agreement the administration has announced that it has been trying to achieve. The first one is the old problems, how do you count deployed nuclear warheads and delivery vehicles? We have a very poor base for this in the New START Treaty because everything is degraded that was in the original START Treaty, which in turn was never designed to deal with numbers this low. And the cheating potential is significant as you have with what is apparently going to be proposed to the Russians.

The number of inspections has been reduced considerably. The types of inspections have been reduced. The number of notifications have been considerably reduced. Almost the entire mobile ICBM verification regime that was in the START Treaty is gone in New START. The telemetry regime is virtually gone in the New START Treaty.

So for the old problems, we have a seriously degraded verification potential and there's no indication the administration will seek to try to fix any of these problems. One of the biggest traditional problems is the administration - as Paula DeSutter, the former Assistant Secretary of State for Verification and Compliance pointed out - we've got the same regime as in the old START Treaty for counting warheads despite the fact that the Russians violated it from day one in the START period to the end of the expiration of the START Treaty.

On top of this we have the much more difficult problem of counting nuclear weapons or tactical nuclear weapons. That problem is really two-fold. First, we don't really know how many nuclear weapons or tactical nuclear weapons the Russians have. Estimates are - including the administration's estimates - are ten-to-one Russian advantage in this area. Undersecretary of Defense for Policy James Miller says they have from 2,000 to 4.000 tactical nuclear weapons. Now the problem with that is that Russian sources very frequently have much higher numbers.

So we start out by not really knowing what they have. And another big problem is, how small have they gotten? We know what they were in the 1980s. We were really doing a lot of work on Russia in the 1980s. We knew they had very small nuclear weapons, 155-mm nuclear shells, nuclear backpacks, small strategic nuclear weapons.

We have pretty good information from Russian statements and Russian press sources that they've gotten smaller since the end of the Cold War, but we don't really know how much smaller. But let's assume best case they're as big as they were in the 1980s. Well, we are starting out with the problem of trying to monitor and control things which are one to two orders of magnitude smaller and lighter than anything that has been subject to strategic arms control monitoring under any previous treaty. And worse than that, we have no experience whatsoever in doing this sort of thing because of the fact that Russia has rejected every proposal that we've every made to establish any form of transparency or verification regime relating to or involving such nuclear weapons. So we've got a real problem.

And how is the administration setting about to deal with this? Well, we do know, if you track their statements, that they very rarely talk about "verification." They talk about "transparency." Now transparency is a much lower standard because almost anything can be deemed to be transparent whether or not it has any serious effect in giving you a verification capability.

You hear some really goofy statements out of the senior levels of the State department verification bureau about verifying nuclear weapons numbers by social media. Now I don't think that's a particularly effective way to do this. So basically, I think they're going to fail in their efforts with the Russians. I don't even think that it's technically possible to do some of the things that they claim they're going to do, and that they expect to fail and that's why they're talking - at least that's what their friends are saying - about evading Senate oversight.

Thank you.


MR. STEPHEN BLANK: I'm going to give you the bad news.


Thank you very much, Peter, for having me again. This might be the last time in Washington that I say I'm not speaking on behalf of the Army, the Defense Department or the government. These are my personal views. And it's difficult to add much to what Mark has said because it's been a remarkably thorough and incisive performance. But I hope I can answer some more questions of relevance to these issues for us today.

First of all, I want to talk about the Russian mindset going into these things, not just what they're doing but what they're thinking, to the extent that they reveal that, and then talk about some current issues. For example, the March 15 decision to - well essentially it's going to mean the termination, at least under this administration, of the fourth phase of the EPAA. What happens after 2017 when we have a new government is anybody's guess.

After you've heard what Mark had to say, you might want to ask yourself, why? Why is a country, who when the deputy foreign minister gave an interview in 2011 saying luckily we have no major enemies, building so many nuclear weapons? Neither are they only building all these nuclear weapons and installations? We are currently witnessing a 33 trillion ruble overall rearming of the Russian military by 2020. That's about $800 billion, depending on the exchange rate.

Now there is no doubt that between 1990 and 2008 essentially there was a procurement holiday, for all intensive purposes, in the Russian military. The military was busted. They need to recapitalize their military, and that's an unarguable proposition.

But to the extent that they are building this kind of military, it is clearly intended to take on, on the one hand, the U.S. and NATO; and secondly, the enemy that they will never speak about in public but which does preoccupy a lot of military thinking, namely China. Now if you look at a map, the Russian Far East, which directly adjoins China, is what we call an economy of force theater. It is a theater than can only survive by self-sustaining itself.

If a war broke out between Russia and China, and now and then Russian military and political officials actually allude to the possibility of a Chinese threat, within a day the Chinese could take out the Trans-Siberian Railway and essentially isolate the area from the rest of continental Russia. Therefore, the only recourse that the Russian military has in a contingency with China is nuclear.

Now because of its conventional nuclear inferiority to NATO and the United States, despite this enormous conventional rearmament program, nukes are the priority. And given the fact that as we know in the Russian military 20 to 40 - if not more - 20 to 40 percent of the budget is stolen -- last year they fired the defense minister who himself was in on it, some of the graft -- it is more than likely that the conventional goals will not be completely met and that the reliance on nuclear weapons will therefore continue to a greater degree than other nuclear powers of a comparable nations, namely the U.S. and China, rely on nuclear weapons for their defense programs. That's pretty obvious.

Now, beyond that, we have reasonably good evidence - I was just in Helsinki two weeks ago and talked to a Finnish analyst who does this - we have reasonably good evidence that short-range nuclear weapons are deployed with the Russian army in the west strategic direction. That's basically facing Poland and the Baltic states. We have been told that tactical nuclear weapons are going to be deployed with cruise missile on ships. That was stated openly a few years ago. We don't know a lot about tactical nuclear weapons as Mark said, but that's an example.

Again, why? Fundamentally, this is a government that has what the German philosopher Carl Schmidt called "a presupposition of conflict." It sees itself as threatened on all sides. I have, in a study that's coming out, an article I've written. And you can see this if you go the Russian foreign policy concept. It's in English on the foreign ministry's web site, maybe on the president's web site as well, a threat assessment that essentially NATO and the U.S. are advancing, are creating threats to strategic stability - that's missile defenses - and that the likelihood of war in and around Russia's frontiers is growing.

And they've been saying this kind of thing for about five or six years now. It's not just a new wrinkle in Russian thinking. Putin, on February 27 speaking to a Ministry of Defense colloquium, quote, "We see instability and conflict spreading around the world today. Armed conflicts continue in the Middle East and Asia, and the danger of the export of radicalism and chaos continues to grow even in our neighboring regions"

Note that Syria is a neighboring region. That's a Soviet border, not the Russian Federation's border. In other words, Russian defense planning starts with the idea that the Soviet border is still our frontier and therefore we do not fully accept the sovereignty and territorial integrity and independence of the post-Soviet states.

Later, Putin said, "At the same time we see methodical attempts to undermine the strategic balance in various ways and forms," missile defense. "The United States has essentially launched the second phase of its global missile defense system. There are attempts to sound out possibilities for expanding NATO further eastward."

That tells me that they have bought an intelligence assessment that doesn't exist, that is basically fabricated. There's nobody in this town or in Brussels talking about expanding NATO. It's not going to happen anytime soon. Yet Russian intelligence and the government obviously believe this, and that's already a sign of something dangerous.

"There is also the danger of the militarization in the Arctic. All these challenges, and they're just a few of the many that we face, are a direct concern to our national interest and therefore also determine our priorities." And you get dozens of such statements from Russian officials of this kind.

And the foreign policy concept is also essentially one that talks about the decline of the United States, the rise of Asia, economic chaos as a result of the current global crisis, the scramble for resources and so forth. If you read the foreign policy concept, you will understand - and especially if you've studied Russian history, and one of my sins is I did - this is essentially a threat assessment that derives from Lenin's 1916 book "Imperialism: The Highest Stage of Capitalism." What we are dealing with, even though this is not a Soviet government, it is a government that still has a Leninist mentality with regard to national security stripped of the Marxism.

There are internal enemies, i.e. those who want reform; and there are external enemies, and they're the same people. Not only that, the external enemy, the United States, is threatening us militarily. And as a result, we have to be able to deter the United States. We cannot have a relationship of cooperation, with cooperative security, with one of deterrence. Deterrence presupposes hostility.

The same is true with regard to China, even though China is our closest friend and so forth. Nonetheless, the nukes are there and the Chinese know it. And when the Chinese say something or do something that's antithetical to Russian interests, they remind them.

For example, in 2010 the Chinese government got up and said basically the Arctic belongs to mankind and not to any particular state. The Russian commander-in-chief of the navy at that time, Admiral Vysotsky reminded the Chinese that the Arctic is indeed Russian, so they claimed, and that the navy was prepared to enforce that claim. And when the prime minister Wen Jiabao came to Moscow they took him to visit the nuclear command complex, just in case.

We do the same thing. I mean, that's a kind of psyop. Just remember who you're dealing with here, sir.

The point is, this is a government with a Leninist threat assessment and cast of mind regarding the outside world. This defense buildup, part of which Mark described - the convention one has been published essentially and is available in various articles and statements -- was suppose to last until 2020. But now, the government is talking about achieving a breakthrough comparable to that of the 1930s. In other words, Stalin's five-year plans.

And as the Deputy Minister of Defense Rogozin jokingly said, he sent the defense industries that aren't keeping up with requirements a copy of a letter that Stalin wrote to the defense industry in the 1940 basically saying that if you don't shape up we'll shoot you. Now thankfully we are beyond those days, but this is the kind of people we are dealing with.

What is essential here to understand is that therefore we have a skewed threat assessment -- we have a semi-Stalinist or wanna-be Stalinist industrialization drive - in which nuclear war is not unthinkable. If you read enough Russian military literature, Mark knows this very well, Russian commanders now and then are perfectly frank in talking about nuclear - not only exercises, but operations. As I said, short-range nuclear weapons - the Iskander, and the Iskander missile comes both as a conventional ballistic missile or it can be converted from conventional to nuclear. And if you fly it at low trajectory it can become a missile under the INF category in distance. Those are probably - those are deployed in the western strategic direction opposite Poland and the Baltic states and Finland as well.

We just had an incursion into Swedish airspace two weeks ago, which the Swedes did not pickup. NATO did, but the Swedes didn't and it was very embarrassing. We have a new base being built in Belarus which the Poles say will be used for offensive purposes.

We have continuing nuclear exercises. The Zapod 2013 exercise with Belarus - Zapod means west in Russian - there will probably be a nuclear component, just as Zapod 2009 was. And that ended with a simulated nuclear strike on Warsaw. Vostok 2010 - Vostok is east - ended with a simulated tactical nuclear strike against a Chinese army group in the Far East.

We have an administration that, as Mark said, has an ostrich-like policy. Or, if you like the three monkeys: hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil. We have the abiding belief in many quarters in town, which is a belief that we would all, I think, like to share - going back to Robert McNamara if not before - that nuclear weapons serve no useful military, strategic or political purpose. You can't use them.

Now that has become an article of faith in many quarters and it's a wonderful idea. It would be nice if the world were so constituted that we could believe it. But if you look at the facts, it ain't so.

Now this is not to say that I am going around advocating nuclear use or that other states are. So far, we haven't gotten that. But, everybody who has nuclear weapons, if they have not taken a holiday from reason, understand perfectly well what the benefits are to them in both the political and military sense.

And it is imperative for us, if we're going to understand how to deal with Russia -- and for that matter any nuclear power whether it's Pakistan, North Korea, Israel if they have nukes, and so on -- that we understand the way they think about it. This kind of idealistic ethnocentrism distorts policy. It distorts strategy and undermines our efforts to achieve our goals because it not only corrodes our ability to get arms control agreements and defend the interest of the United States and its allies, it undermines our ability to secure our regional security interests as well.

The reset with Russia, for example, aimed not only to alleviate tensions in a general sense with Russia, but in the belief that the Russians could contribute to issues that are important to us if we understood issues important to them. We buried NATO enlargement. Now, NATO enlargement wasn't going to happen even if John McCain had been elected president because Germany and France were dead set against it. And there's nothing anybody here could do to change that opinion. Nevertheless, we shelved it.

On human rights - and I think to our everlasting shame -- we have been basically silent. And I'm old enough to remember when that was not the case. On regional security issues, this administration has basically neglected Eastern Europe, as East Europeans will tell you. We really do not have much of a policy in the Caucasus, except essentially waiting on events.

And in central Asia we talk about the so-called - and so far the money isn't there. It's a bluff. And what we got out of Afghanistan - we're going to be out of Afghanistan and have basically lost a lot of leverage with regard to Central Asia - and we don't have the money to invest there the way Russia and China do.

On Syria, we have an administration that appears to be paralyzed in the face of a true disaster: 70,000 people killed, over two million, maybe 2.5 million refugees. The alternative to doing absolutely nothing is not necessarily sending in the U.S. army. There's an array, a spectrum of things that could be done and none of them have been.

And as a result, we have paralysis here because everybody is bewitched by the Iraq example. Syria is not Iraq. That doesn't mean we just blindly send in the troops, but again, you have to understand what you're dealing with, and we don't. We are paralyzed by this example and we have no clarity of what we want or whom we want to support to get whatever it is that we might want.

As a result, Russian obduracy has prevailed. This horrendous decision to arrange for a conference, which probably will hopefully never come off because the rebels and Assad won't sit down with each other, is another example of a unilateral and unreciprocated concession to Russia. So is, in my view, the decision on March 15 to terminate the fourth phase in Europe and relocate much of the missile defense structure and infrastructure to the Asia Pacific to deal with the North Korean threat.

Whether or not North Korea actually has the means to threaten U.S. territories, let alone CONUS, the continental United States, I can't say. The Pentagon says yes, and we can go with that. They certainly can threaten Japan and South Korea, and they always need to be reassured.

Nevertheless, and even if you take the argument that both the Bush and the Obama administration have made, that the missile defense system is not intended against Russia and that it can't be intended against Russia if you know elementary geography and physics and because of the size and diversity of the Russian nuclear arsenal, the termination of the fourth phase was a most unfortunate decision. Now again, if we were aiming to stop Russian missiles, the interceptors that are going to be on the fourth phase or were supposed to be on the fourth phase of the EPAA, would have had to travel 50 percent faster than they can, traveling six kilometers a second rather than four. That's 50 percent faster, to intercept Russian missiles, and they won't be able to do that.

So there's no threat to Russia. There never has been a threat to Russia. We have said this to the Russians going back to Bob Gates and Condi Rice and maybe even before that. And yet, the Russians continue to insist and believe otherwise.

As I mentioned to you, we have a system in Russia where the intelligence apparatus is out of control. And we know from Russian history, innumerable times, where these guys deliberately inflate the threat. If the military says it's a threat, it's a threat.

Now in this country that kind of stuff wouldn't be allowed for a minute. Part of my job is to contribute to the gathering of intelligence - not intelligence, but information and research as to what constitutes the threat. And all of us know that every day in this town and throughout the country the nature of the threat assessment confronting the United States is a matter of public debate. And we don't simply take the Pentagon's assessment for granted or the NIC's assessment for granted and accept it. And then the Congress has its say and the academic and expert community and private industry, all those people contribute to this.

In Russia, if the intelligence community says it's a threat, and they obviously are going to make it a threat, it's a threat. So you have a (government ?) threat assessment, a lack of democratic control over the means of force, a presupposition of hostility to the West, an attempt to create a quasi-Stalinist military buildup, in the belief that Russia is facing greater threats than it ever has, which is the exact opposite of the truth, and greater reliance on nuclear weapons. In the face of that, unreciprocated concessions, such as the withdrawal of the EPAA fourth phase.

While the things that Mark talked about in his discussion should fill us with foreboding because, as Donald Kagan memorably wrote, peace does not preserve itself. If we have the illusion that nuclear weapons have no useful strategic military or political purpose - even though, god forbid they should ever be used, and that we are going to essentially unilaterally disarm in a kind of graceful glide path - we are creating a condition where peace cannot be preserved, whether it be at the regional or, god forbid, at the global level.

And when we have an administration that has made it clear that intends to make promises to Congress and then go back on them, as has been the case, that's also troubling. As you all know, regardless of who the president is and which party dominates the White House or Congress, if the president writes a letter to Congress saying I'm going to do X and I promise you that, it's not smart or good politics to go back on that. But that's what's happening, as Mark talked about.

So I think this is a time when we should be increasingly anxious strategically; not panicked, but we should begin to get up there and start saying, exactly where do you intend to take us and why and how, to the White House and demand explanations. Not only do we have the right as citizens, we have the obligation to do so. And what's more, we need to bring back the strategic community in this country in all of its components to the ability to think like the other guy thinks.

Thank you.


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