Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
The the debate between the Republican presidential hopefuls.
Last week regarding foreign policy and the number of -- aspirants want to be very aggressive with Iran.
We keep hearing reports about Israel and the fact that there may be a preemptive strike because of the nuclear potential capability of Iran.
What do you think's gonna happen.
Well -- modernize in the intelligence business we game we always used to divide everything went wanted to know into two categories secrets and mysteries.
Secrets -- those things that were ultimately knowable mysteries half from the protagonists themselves to know what's gonna happen I think that's where we are with Iran.
I think the Israeli government has divided in some respects like our -- over the the right approach to take.
Former head of Mossad has been saying what a terrible mistake military strike -- others.
The site the existential threat than a nuclear armed Iran poses for Israel.
So I think -- they're both sides of the issue and that the problem is this is a really tough problem for which there are no easy answers and we've learned anything from Iraq and Afghanistan and it is the uncertainty.
Of war once it started.
The other side of that coin though is that we also have to recognize that a nuclear armed Iran.
Is likely to spark a -- a nuclear arms race in the Middle East.
And if Ron will be further emboldened to -- act aggressively both in Iraq and Afghanistan but all across the entire region.
I think we have a little more time they have got in -- enough enriched uranium probably for several weapons.
But it's still low enriched uranium.
They're still working on their weapons design so I think we have some time and the question is.
How -- how much harder can you squeeze the regime in Tehran.
I know there's a debate going on about whether to -- central bank for example.
And I think that's a very legitimate question.
For the first time we've seen some of those involved in the Green revolution.
Pressing against the regime on the nuclear strategy so is there more we can due to empower them.
Opposition in Tehran Iran Iran without discrediting them because they're associated with -- -- This is a tough problem and and frankly I think those who think there's an easy answer to this.
At -- -- when you do defense planning.
And and you think of the next generation or couple of generations are your grandchildren.
Who who will they be facing in a lot of us think.
That China with their growing power in the world is going to be also one that we're gonna have to tackle Sunday.
President just said he's gonna send some troops to Australia.
For our security in that region.
Could do you understand that I don't what that what that's all about.
It especially when you have a country with more than a billion people I was a couple of troops and Australia help -- out and is China.
In your estimation of future problem for.
-- -- Well first of all I think one of the -- and things that I -- it was clear to me as secretary of defense.
On a number of business -- Asia is that all the countries out there would like to have a greater US presence.
Naval presence forward basing and Marines and song.
And it's true of people that.
Five or ten years ago we wouldn't have -- like that like Indonesia and Malaysia Vietnam.
And so on and so it's not so much a matter of you have enough troops there to be able to face off with China -- is they re if half reaffirmation.
Of US interest.
Hand the fact that the US will maintain a presence both naval and on the ground.
In Asia but I would say this in terms of future threats.
When it comes to predicting where we will use military force next.
Our record since Vietnam is perfect.
We've never once got -- right.
Somalia Haiti the Balkans Iraq twice Afghanistan.
Libya twice the list goes on and on.
In not one of those places -- we know six months before him that we would be deploying US forces there.
And so what I've tried to do what I tried to do a secretary defenses to get the services to think about.
How we build the maximum possible versatility.
Into the equipment and training we have.
For the broadest possible range of conflict because we just don't know.
Last question the the budget super committee deadlines coming up very quickly.
You know what the rules are that defense will -- a huge hit.
Your successor secretary -- talking about the fact it would reduce -- capabilities to prior to World War II.
What's your take on can we handle large defense cuts.
-- If you take the program.
Cuts -- -- -- of programs that were over budget way overdue.
Application no longer -- Or the concept of what how we would use in compliance.
That if those have been built to completion that's about 330 billion dollars.
We then cut another.
178 billion dollars over the last couple of years in terms of efficiencies and -- I gave a hundred and I told the services I'll give -- a hundred billion of that back you find a hundred billion in savings.
Any -- in -- I'll let you invested in -- So if you add the 330 in the 78 there's a little over 400 billion that's already in the program to be cut.
Over and -- Croat president directed another 40450.
The defense department's already had between 80900.
Billion dollars in cuts that have been identified and direct it.
And I believed and I think Leon.
Beliefs that we over -- ten year period we can figure out a way to accommodate that as long as.
President and the congress understands there are gonna be some limitations in terms of what we can.
If this super committee does not do its work.
That will cut defense another 600 billion dollars and that will be catastrophic.
And I would just add an editorial -- I think frankly that creation of this -- company was a complete abdication of responsibility on the part of congress.
It basically says this is too hard for -- Give us a brat.
Gives a package where all I have to do is voted -- -- voted down and I don't have to take any personal responsibility for any of the tough decisions.
So now we're left with this this sword of damocles.
-- hanging over the government hanging over defense.
And -- if these cuts are automatically made.
-- I think that the results for our national security will be will be --
Filter by section